John Shields

The DC Radar Screen: July 2009

Filed By John Shields | August 09, 2009 12:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, The Movement

July was, without a doubt, a busy month for the LGBTQ community. We witnessed some gains, as well as more than our share of losses. Below you will find just a few stories that hit the Bilerico-DC airwaves in July.

My choices that follow come from the Bilerico-DC site, and it is in no way meant to be a comprehensive list of the important LGBTQ stories from last month. It's just what I grabbed as a cross-section of July 2009, in chronological order.

Tag the main Bilerico site, as well as the state sites, daily for some hard-hitting LGBTQ stories of interest. We're the comics and the op-ed pages wrapped in a nice online multimedia format.

You'll know more than you knew before, thanks to our diverse and esteemed group of national and international contributors that drill down on the LGBTQ issues that affect our community - every day. Tip of the hat to all of them.

July is toast. Welcome to August, circa 2009.

My Pride Party & the White Elephant by Keri Renault

Tuesday night over dinner conversation at a friend's home near Capital Hill, my partner and I recalled the memorable highlights of our Maryland housewarming. Our social event the previous Saturday was more a celebration of newfound friendship than a newcomer's party after 10 months on the Chesapeake Bay.

The Ins and Outs of the HIV Travel and Immigration Ban

On Friday, June 26, at the behest of the Office of Management and Budget (see announcement), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was asked to proceed with publication in the Federal Register of the long-anticipated rule to lift the HIV travel and immigration ban. This move marks the next-to-final step in removing this decades-old, discriminatory prohibition placed on HIV-positive individuals.

Question: What Did We Expect? Answer: More Than This.

Barack Obama has been criticized for what he has not done as President on the myriad LGBTQ issues that he addressed during the campaign. I don't have much to add to the "what," but I have a thought about the "why."

Healthcare Reform for LGBT Americans

The healthcare reform debate has become so fluid and has moved so quickly as of late, that trying to follow along is akin to taking a proverbial drink from a fire-hose of health policy. Currently, there are five committees in Congress working on healthcare reform - three jointly in the House and two separately in the Senate, which are now appearing far less likely to cooperate than originally thought.

O'Malley, Favorable Opinion May Pave Way for Civil Marriage

Legislation in support of same-sex marriage in Maryland has hit political roadblocks time and again. Apathetic sub-committees have proven a common dead-end.

The Brüno Effect

I'll admit, I laughed my ass off throughout Brüno, Sacha Baron Cohen's latest shockfest. Opening this weekend to equal amounts critical acclaim and scorn, the movie is a giddy mash-up of social, sophomoric and startling humor.

Art and Stereotypes: What is a Gay Character?

A female friend turned to me a few years ago and said, "You're a dancer! That's so great that you're in touch with your feminine side." It reminded me that my profession is embedded with expectations of gender and sexuality. Dance is not masculine, feminine, straight or gay, but it seems like most people think it is. Why do we see dance as feminine, or gay?

What Does Virginia Governor Tim Kaine and the DNC Have in Common with "Gay Rights" Groups? Not Our Interests.

I have written about the recent Virginia Court decision involving Michael W. Moore - a former resident of Martinsville, Virginia, who was forced to resign from the Virginia Museum of Natural History because he is gay - in numerous places, including legal briefs.

Where's My Gay Tennis Player?

As a young kid playing tennis on the cracked and ill-kept public courts of rural Western Kentucky, I had my idols who inspired both how and why I played. I loved Bjorn Borg, despite my great aunt's admonishment to "always root for the American" (had she ever seen a John McEnroe temper tantrum perhaps it would have changed her mind, though I doubt it). Borg's topspin and two-handed backhand were things I tried to copy into my young game, elements of which are still with me 30 years later (e.g. my anachronistic loopy backswing).

One Pissed Off District

Washington D.C.'s Human Rights Act includes protections for gender identity and expression - and the law is supposed to extend to public accommodations. But a not-so-funny thing is happening on the way to the restroom. Rampant discrimination remains in play.

Richmond Newspaper Regrets Role in Support of Segregation

Virginia - which gave the early years of the nation many brilliant, enlightened and dynamic leaders - has for more than the last 125 years become a bastion of reactionary thought where discrimination against targeted groups of its citizens has been and continues to be embraced.

A "New Era" for the White Attire Affair

What a night to remember! Decked out from head-to-toe in full white regalia, I ventured to the Southeast on Saturday evening to attend the 10th Annual White Attire Affair, produced by the newly formed non-profit, the Al Sura Foundation.

Those are just a few of the stories that hit the Bilerico-DC wire in July, not counting our daily and weekly reports, as well as my Radar Screen post from the main Bilerico site earlier this month.

Welcome to the dog daze of August. Enjoy the rest of your summer, and don't forget the Great Nationwide Kiss-in set for this Saturday at 2pm EDT.

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