Tuesday, July 22, 2014

BREAKING: Federal Judge To Strike Down Colorado's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Tomorrow But He Is Mulling A Stay

A federal judge this afternoon declared that tomorrow he will issue an injunction to overturn Colorado's ban on same-sex marriage. But he added that he has still not decided whether to stay his decision pending a ruling by the US Supreme Court.
Colorado Republican Attorney General John Suthers is not opposing the injunction, but wants it to be stayed until the nation's highest court decides the issue. However, the attorney for the gay couples told the judge repeatedly that "justice delayed is justice denied." "Fundamental rights cannot be stayed," said Mari Newman, one of the attorneys filing suit on behalf of the six couples. The judge said he is going to issue a ruling Wednesday. A ruling in favor of the plaintiffs, without a stay, would open the door to allowing clerks statewide to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. But Michael Francisco, the assistant solicitor general arguing on behalf of Suthers' office, said they will continue to pursue a stay with a higher court if the judge denies it. Francisco noted there's legal precedent where stays have been issued when courts in other states have found same-sex marriage bans unconstitutional. "The reason is that the stays are appropriate to preserve the status quo while the appellate courts hear these cases," he said.
Colorado has been going through one of the most convoluted marriage battles yet seen, and that is saying something.
Clerks in Boulder, Denver, and Pueblo counties have already issued licenses to gay couples after court rulings saying same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional. However, the Colorado Supreme Court last week ordered Denver to stop while the state ban remains in place, and the Pueblo clerk stopped on Monday because of that ruling. The state's attorney general applauded Pueblo's decision. The state Supreme Court ruling did not apply to Boulder's clerk, however. A district judge ruled in the clerk's favor this month, allowing same-sex marriage licenses to continue. Clerk Hillary Hall has issued 172 licenses to gay couples over the past month. She began issuing the licenses in late June after the 10th Circuit ruled on Utah's ban, saying states cannot prevent people from marrying based on their gender.

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FAA Bans US Flights To & From Tel Aviv

Via the Washington Post:
The Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday afternoon ordered U.S. carriers to stop flying to or from Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv, prohibiting them from traveling through Israel’s largest airport after a rocket landed nearby. Airlines were banned from flying to Tel Aviv for a 24-hour period beginning on Tuesday at 12:15 p.m. The FAA said it will issue additional guidance by the end of that period.  This prohibition came after a rocket landed about a mile away from the airport, the FAA said. “The FAA immediately notified U.S. carriers when the agency learned of the rocket strike and informed them that the agency was finalizing [the notice],” the agency said in a statement. “The FAA will continue to monitor and evaluate the situation.” Even before the FAA’s notice was sent out, several U.S. airlines began canceling flights on Tuesday morning and afternoon.
United has suspended all service to and from Tel Aviv until further notice.

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One Million Moms Vs Black Jesus

Just in via email:
The late night programming on the Cartoon Network, known as Adult Swim, plans to air the non-animated show "Black Jesus" portraying Jesus as a "black guy living in the hood." The show depicts him living in Compton Gardens and makes a mockery of our Lord. The foul language used in the trailer, including using the Lord’s name in vain, is disgusting. In addition, there is violence, gunfire and other inappropriate gestures which completely misrepresent Jesus. This is blasphemy! "Black Jesus" is set to premiere on August 7 at 11:00 pm ET/ 10:00 pm CT, unless we intervene. Adult Swim plans to blaspheme Jesus on a weekly basis. This mockery will be similar to "South Park" and "Family Guy," but much worse since the entire program will be based on lies about Christianity.

1MM will defend our Savior because He is Holy! Adult Swim is obviously not a family network, and this program is set to air later in the evening when children should be asleep, but that is no excuse. Adult Swim has crossed the line by belittling the Christian religion with foul jokes. We need to send a loud and clear message to Adult Swim, its owner Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. (a Time Warner Company), and all potential advertisers of "Black Jesus" that this kind of programming is insulting and completely unacceptable. Adult Swim is not ridiculing any other religion currently and wouldn’t dream of mocking Mohammed or Muslims.

If we speak with one voice now, we can keep this program from ever seeing the light of day. Christians must take a stand and not be silent. Networks like Adult Swim continue to mock Christianity, and we will not stand for it. Christians should no longer sit idly by and allow this blasphemy to continue without speaking up in protest. “Black Jesus” is another attempt to distort the truth about Christianity. There is power in numbers! Forward this to everyone you know in a fight to keep this show off the air.
I considered posting the trailer for Black Jesus a few days ago, but decided it looked deeply unfunny and laden with the predictable cardboard cutout characters one finds in uncountable direct-to-video flops that never even see the light of middle-of-the-night basic cable. But now that the Handmaids of the Republic of Gilead have sicced the Eyes Of God upon the show, you go Black Jesus.

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AFA Email Campaign To Obama: Your LGBT Executive Order Has Stolen Our Religious Freedom To Be Total Douchebags

From the American Family Association:
Defying the Constitution, which gives only Congress the authority to make laws, President Obama decreed that anyone who does business with the federal government must adopt written policies that specifically mandate special protections for “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.” Obama’s love affair with homosexuality will impact some 24,000 companies with 28 million workers, or one-fifth of the U.S. workforce. More alarming, his order discriminates against Christians.

In most cases, the government uses private and locally-owned civilian businesses to provide services. Examples include construction companies (carpenters, plumbers, electricians, etc.), health care professions, retail vendors (Walmart, Menard’s, restaurant chains), hotels and airlines. Without an exemption, Obama is ordering Christians to embrace sin and forfeit their faith convictions if they want to have the same business opportunities as non-Christian businesses. Obama has overstepped his authority and treats Christians as second-class citizens.
Read the email that the AFA is urging its followers to send:
I am deeply concerned by your executive order this week giving minorities the same rights and privileges that Christians have enjoyed for half a century, based solely on who they have steamy, wildly inventive, and deeply satisfying sex with. I believe all minorities should be treated as non-white, non-Christians were treated during the Middle Ages, but you have given preferential treatment to a fabulous lifestyle and not our chosen philosophy. More concerning is your decision to ignore the numerous pleas from KKK-affiliated hate groups to include exemptions for those who hold deep religious prejudices. In essence, you are discriminating against bigots and placing them at a great disadvantage when bidding to do business with the federal government. I am sending a copy of this message to my members of Congress, urging them to overturn your executive order by whatever means necessary, including fasting and holding their breath, to rein in your totally legal order and insure that Christians are free to practice their faith while pushing lesser Americans to the side.
I substituted a few words above, but hey, the AFA's action alert does invite one to "edit or add your own text." Hit the link for the original suggested message. (I did leave "insure" as is because ha ha.)

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NOM: Chase Bank Doesn't Give A Shit About What Anti-Gay Hate Groups Think

Brian Brown would like you to know that a whopping 5000 actual human type people have signed NOM's wildly viral boycott campaign against JPMorgan Chase. And therefore it's fucking bewildering that a multi-trillion dollar corporation with operations in dozens of nations hasn't suspended international trading to return his foot-stompy calls.
It's been nearly a week since we announced our boycott and petition against JP Morgan Chase. Since then, over five thousand activists have signed up at www.VoidChase.com to demand answers and an apology from the bank for the invasive and inappropriate survey issued to employees that sought to discover whether they were in step with the bank's pro-LGBT agenda. But we still have not gotten any response from the bank about how this information was handled and what it could be used to accomplish. Nor has the bank's leadership owned up to the wrongness of their actions and issued a necessary apology to their employees and customers.

So I need you to take action today, if you haven't already done so, and join the VoidChase movement! Visit www.VoidChase.com right away and sign your name to this important cause. You may have read that yesterday President Obama signed an executive action ostensibly aimed at preventing workplace discrimination against LGBT persons, but which could in reality be used as a weapon to punish and harass individuals and groups who support marriage as the union of one man and one woman. In the context of such action by our government, it is more important than ever that we let corporate America know that thought-policing in the workplace and the enforcement of political agendas through discrimination against pro-family employees is unacceptable.
I like to imagine that the boards of Chase, Starbucks, and General Mills have shared a snickering group conference call. That's how my SNL skit would play.

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TOMORROW: World Premiere Of Pet Shop Boys' Alan Turing Opera In London

Tomorrow night at London's Royal Albert Hall, Pet Shop Boys will perform with the BBC Concert Orchestra in the world premiere of their Alan Turing opera, A Man From The Future. Via the Guardian:
"For one night only, I'm one of the BBC singers!" marvels Pet Shop Boys frontman Neil Tennant – he is adding his voice to the 18-strong chamber choir. "I can't imagine he'll blend in," deadpans his colleague Chris Lowe, who is usually found hiding behind a bank of synthesisers at their shows. He is worried about the lack of dry ice and lasers at the Royal Albert Hall. "The lights are always on [at classical concerts], aren't they? I personally am going to feel very exposed." It is not the first time a pop group has featured at the Proms. From Soft Machine's 1970 set (later turned into a live album)to last year's 6 Music and 1Xtra specials, pop and rock acts have often played a part in the two-month series. But Tennant and Lowe are doing something different this year: performing the world premiere of an ambitious new work, A Man From The Future. Based on the life of the extraordinary mathematician and Enigma code-cracker Alan Turing, it's an orchestral pop "biography" in eight parts for electronics, orchestra, choir and narrator.
Late last year Turing was granted a posthumous royal pardon for the 1952 homosexuality conviction that ultimately led to his suicide. The pardon prompted Tennant to change the closing of the opera.
"We had to [rewrite the ending to] point out that the convictions of tens of thousands of other men remain, and that hasn't really been discussed," says Tennant. However, the finale has a celebratory feel, and recognises the changes in attitudes towards homosexuality, globally. Tennant lists these happily: a 2013 US poll in which 52% of Americans were shown to approve of same-sex marriage, the moment in 1994 when John Major lowered the age of consent to 18 ("everyone forgets it was him that started things off").
Tomorrow's event will begin with Chrissie Hynde providing vocals on orchestral versions of several Pet Shop Boys classics, including Rent and Love Is A Catastrophe. The Turing opera will follow. The concert begins at 5:15PM New York City time and I'll post a live stream if one is available.

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TRAILER: The Imitation Game

Opening on November 21st:
In THE IMITATION GAME, Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Alan Turing, the genius British mathematician, logician, cryptologist and computer scientist who led the charge to crack the German Enigma Code that helped the Allies win WWII. Turing went on to assist with the development of computers at the University of Manchester after the war, but was prosecuted by the UK government in 1952 for homosexual acts which the country deemed illegal.

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RUSSIA: St. Petersburg Court Rules That Local LGBT Group Is A Spy Organization

A court in St. Petersburg today ruled that Coming Out, a local Russian LGBT rights group, is a de facto spy organization because it receives funding from outside the country. Via Buzzfeed:
The group is one of hundreds of human rights organizations that has had this label slapped on them or been taken to court by government officials for failing to register voluntarily under a 2012 law that requires NGOs who receive funding from abroad to declare themselves “foreign agents.” The Justice Ministry registered five new groups as foreign agents this week alone. Coming Out had been fighting the designation in court for 16 months. “[Printing] the label ‘foreign agent’ on all the public materials of the organization would be a sign for wider society that the idea of protecting the rights of LGBT people is something ‘foreign,’ and, therefore unnecessary and even harmful,” said the group in a statement on its Facebook page.
The judge's ruling reportedly declares that Coming Out violates the rights of "persons with a traditional sexual orientation." Coming Out plans to appeal the decision.

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Today In Christian Love™: Popular Religious News Site Says Gays Are Possessed By Putrid-Smelling Demons
And Are Worse Than Pigs

"Here's the raw, naked truth: Homosexuality is actually a demon spirit. It is such a putrid-smelling demon that other demons don't even like to hang around it. A genuine prophet of God told me that the Lord allowed him to smell this demon spirit, and he got sick to his stomach. And yet as humans, many embrace this demon. Yes, you heard me right: Being gay is demonic. There is an account in the Bible where Jesus casts 2,000 demons out of a man. The demons came out screaming and begged Jesus to send them into the pigs. The pigs didn't want them, so they ran down a steep hill and were drowned in the sea. Pigs have more sense than some humans. Some people embrace homosexual demons, but the pigs would rather die than be possessed with demons." - Pastor Bert Ferias, in a lengthy and jaw-droppingly vile essay published today by Charisma News, one of the most popular Christian news sites in America. The above-linked article invites you to follow Ferias on Facebook and Twitter.

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Basement Jaxx - Never Say Never

Via Stereogum:
About a month ago, UK dance duo Basement Jaxx shared the towering disco-house track “Never Say Never,” the third single from their upcoming album Junto. Today, it’s been given a spectacularly insane video thanks to writer/director Saman Kesh. In a world where 72% of humans have stopped dancing, Jaxx Industries sets out to “stimulate the world to dance again” by inventing and perfecting the Bluetooth-enabled, iTunes sync-able TW3RK-BOT, complete with self-lubricating, machine-washable Jaxx Buttocks.
Possibly not office-friendly.

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FLORIDA: US Rep. David Jolly (R-FL) Becomes Eighth Sitting GOP Member Of Congress To Back Same-Sex Marriage

US House Rep. David Jolly (R-FL) has become the eighth sitting GOP member of Congress to endorse marriage equality.
When asked by The Washington Post whether he supports gay marriage, in light of a Florida judge's decision last week to overturn the state's ban, Jolly said that his personal views on marriage are that it should be limited to one man and one woman. But, he added, states should not be defining the "sanctity" of marriage. “As a matter of my Christian faith, I believe in traditional marriage," said Jolly in a statement to The Post. "But as a matter of Constitutional principle I believe in a form of limited government that protects personal liberty. To me, that means that the sanctity of one’s marriage should be defined by their faith and by their church, not by their state. Accordingly, I believe it is fully appropriate for a state to recognize both traditional marriage as well as same-sex marriage, and therefore I support the recent decision by a Monroe County Circuit Judge.”
Among those eight Republicans is Jolly's Florida colleague, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who represents portions of Miami and Hialeah.

RELATED: Jolly represents the Tampa Bay-area's Pinellas County, which includes St. Petersburg and Clearwater. In his first bid for public office, Jolly was elected to the House in January of this year in a special election following the October 2013 death of 22-term GOP Rep. Bill Young.  Jolly, an attorney and former lobbyist, barely squeaked by Democrat Alex Sink, who lost by less than 2% after losing the 2010 Florida gubernatorial race by 1% to Rick Scott. While freshman Rep. Jolly now supports same-sex marriage, he holds traditionally GOP positions on Obamacare, abortion rights, military support for Israel, and gun control.

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GOP Web Ad: Fire Sen. Harry Reid

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FLORIDA: Motion To Lift Stay On Monroe County Same-Sex Marriages Is Denied

In a ruling that only applies in Florida's Monroe County, last week a county circuit judge overturned the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Yesterday that same judge refused to lift his stay on the ruling and allow marriages in the Keys to commence today.
In the emergency motion, the couple’s attorney argued gay couples should be allowed to marry starting Tuesday because of the initial ruling and because the state is unlikely to ultimately win an appeal. Gay marriage proponents have won more than 20 legal decisions against state marriage limits around the country since the U.S. Supreme Court last year struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act. “Every day that goes by, plaintiffs and other same-sex couples are being deprived of important constitutional rights and suffering additional serious, ongoing, and irreparable dignitary, legal and economic harms,” the motion says. Huntsman and Jones are still optimistic, “In the long run we’re going to be victorious,” said Jones, “whether the state attorney general likes it or not.”
The Monroe County case was won by two Key West bartenders who have been a couple for 11 years.

RELATED: In the same CBS Miami report linked above, we get this quote from Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski:
"While Judge Garcia spoke of  'rights,' the Catholic Church speaks of 'right.” As I have said on other occasions, marriage, a union between one man and one woman and any children that arise from that union, is an institution that precedes Church and state; therefore neither Church nor state has any authority to change the nature of marriage. Since time immemorial, marriage has been primarily about the raising of children, who seem to be hardwired to be best raised by a father and a mother who are married to each other. Regardless of Catholic moral teaching on the subject, society has a legitimate interest in preserving marriage as a way of investing in the future of society by providing for the human flourishing of upcoming generations.”
The Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops has filed an opposing brief in a separate case that could overturn the marriage ban statewide. A ruling in that case is thought to be imminent.

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IDAHO: "Add The Four Words" Protesters Given Light Sentences By Cheering Judge

Via Idaho's Spokesman-Review:
The last of more than 100 Idahoans arrested this year in gay-rights protests at the state Capitol were sentenced in a four-hour-plus hearing Monday, and the judge had this message for them: “I respect your courage in doing what you did.” The protesters took part in “Add the 4 Words” demonstrations during this year’s session of the Idaho Legislature, standing silently, hands over their mouths, and refusing to leave until lawmakers agreed to hold a hearing on legislation to amend the Idaho Human Rights Act – or until they were arrested. No hearing was held. The protesters want the words “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” added to the types of discrimination banned by the act. Lawmakers have refused to hold a hearing on the proposed legislation for the past nine years.
The vast majority of the protesters, who were arrested only once, had their charges dismissed. Another two dozen activists who had been arrested multiple times were fined $10 per arrest plus court costs. (Tipped by JMG reader Javier)

RELATED: The entire national LGBT movement should heed the actions of our heroes in Idaho. Adding those four words (sexual orientation and gender identity) to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is our only way forward after the crumbling of ENDA.

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Seriously, Todd Starnes Tweeted This

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Tony Perkins Has Executive Order Sadz

"This action is wrong on the merits, because it accepts the premise that distinctions based on actual conduct -- such as homosexual behavior and cross-dressing -- should be treated the same way as distinctions based on immutable and innocuous characteristics like race. This order gives activists a license to challenge their employers and, expose those contracted employers to threats of costly legal proceedings and the potential of jeopardizing future contracts. The order further burdens contractors by stripping away their right to set dress and grooming standards. All this amounts to viewpoint blackmail and bullies into silence those contractors and subcontractors who have moral objections to homosexual behavior. This morning President Obama told the assembled group of activists, 'We're on the right side of history.' Mr. President, being on the wrong side of the natural law is never being on the right side of history. The President is placing at risk not only faith-driven employers but religious groups such as relief organizations which sometimes put government dollars to work in uniquely effective ways. The President's refusal to completely exempt religious businesses from this executive order betrays his true agenda -- forcing his own conformist views upon everyone else, and making America less free in the process." - Hate group leader Tony Perkins, via email.

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Weird Al - Lame Claim To Fame

Via Rolling Stone:
Another day, another new and hilarious "Weird Al" Yankovic music video. The Mandatory Fun release party continues with "Lame Claim to Fame," which takes aim at all the name-droppers as well as boasters of viral achievements. ("I posted 'First!' in the comments of a YouTube video.") Inspired musically by Southern Culture on the Skids' "Camel Walk," the trucker hat-wearing star of Yankovic's stop-motion animation video brags about having jury duty with Art Garfunkel and sharing an elevator with Christian Slater. "My best friend's brother was an extra in Wayne's World 2," Yankovic sings. "I got me an email from the prince of Nigeria… well, he sure sounded legit."

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Tweet Of The Day

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FLORIDA: Tea Party Speaker Says Public Execution Is Too Good For Obama

Brian Tashman writes for Right Wing Watch:
A senior policy analyst for the Center for Immigration Studies, which bills itself as the think tank of the anti-immigrant Right, told a Florida-based Tea Party group last week that President Obama not only deserves impeachment, but that “being hung, drawn and quartered is probably too good for him.” The Center for New Community’s Imagine 2050 blog first reported on Stephen Steinlight’s remarks. Steinlight also said that John Boehner’s lawsuit against the president is a “political loser” and claimed that while Obama deserves to be impeached, such an effort would backfire on Republicans.

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Brian Brown Has The Executive Order Sadz

"The fact is that non-discrimination rules like the order issued by President Obama can become a weapon used to punish and harass individuals and groups who support marriage as the union of one man and one woman. As with the flawed ENDA legislation that was rejected by Congress, President Obama's order has the great potential of putting employers in the position of standing up for their faith values or violating the new order. This will unnecessarily subject people of faith to harassing complaints and lawsuits. All manner of frivolous lawsuits could result from an action like this, and that's a dangerous thing when the courts have already shown such a lack of restraint when it comes to the question of the definition of marriage. This is nothing more than an agenda to create a cultural narrative wherein the belief in marriage as the union of one man and one woman becomes the legal and social equivalent of bigotry or hate speech. It is the next step on a path we've already seen this administration proudly pursuing, a path toward a new thought-policing state where those who hold traditional values about marriage and family are to be marginalized." - Hate group leader Brian Brown, in a post calling for Congress to overturn today's executive order.

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WATCH: Obama Signs Executive Order

LGBT history made in a room full of LGBT activists.

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Two & A Half Men Stars Kutcher & Cryer To Gay-Marry In Upcoming Episode

ABC News reports:
Two people will tie the knot during the 12th and final season of CBS' "Two and a Half Men," and you may be surprised who they are and why they're getting married. CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler confirmed to ABC News that Ashton Kutcher's character Walden will pop the question to Jon Cryer's Alan. Tassler confirmed that Walden will have a health scare that causes him to make the commitment. "Walden, in having kind of an existential crisis, he has a near-death experience and he is evaluating the meaning of life. He wants to adopt a child and it is particularly challenging to do so as a single male. So he decides that he and Alan should get married and they will adopt a child as a gay couple," Tassler said Thursday, while at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in Beverly Hills.
Didn't we already go through this with I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry?

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Röyksopp & Robyn – Do It Again

Director Martin De Thurah explains the clip's concept:
“The video was filmed over three days in four Mexican states – Mexico City, Vera Cruz, Puebla and Hidalgo. The stories we worked on and the world we created was much more interesting and captivating than just to focus on (the artists’) performance. I worked with the idea of ‘what is our heart’s desire?’ – and I realised that no one in the world truly gets to live out their passions. We are all under some construct, whether you’re an atheist living in Denmark or a gay person in Russia.”

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Telegraph: Israel Bombs Gaza Hospital

The Telegraph reports:
A dozen shells hit the Al Aqsa hospital in the town of Deir el-Balah, Palestinian health official Ashraf al-Kidra said. He said four people were killed and 60 wounded when the shells landed in the administration building, the intensive care unit and the surgery department. A doctor at the hospital, Fayez Zidane told Al Aqsa TV station, a broadcaster affiliated with Hamas, that shells hit the third and fourth floor as well as the reception area. Meanwhile, United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon and US Secretary of State John Kerry headed to Cairo to try to renew cease-fire efforts aimed at ending the Israel-Hamas fighting that has killed at least 530 Palestinians and 20 Israelis and displaced tens of thousands of Gazans in the past two weeks.

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JMG Commenting Reminder

As I regularly do, today I again caution you that even the most idle and "jokey" threats of physical harm to any person or property are completely unacceptable on JMG.  Also strongly discouraged are expressed wishes of physical harm to others by any means, including natural ones. Please remain aware that JMG comments are often scoured by the enemies of civil equality who look for any opportunity to republish ill-considered reactions to the news reported here.

We sometimes see more than 50,000 - 100,000 comments per month and I cannot personally read but a fraction of them. Therefore I must rely on the JMG community to stay self-policing and notify me by email should any comment concern you. Be advised that in many cases these comments are posted by drive-by trolls in order to grab triumphant screen-shots for use elsewhere. You've been remarkably great about observing these very few commenting rules and I thank you for that.

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Bryan Fischer Has Executive Order Sadz

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FRC Has The Executive Order Sadz

"President Obama has ordered employers to put aside their principles, and practices in the name of political correctness. This level of coercion is nothing less than viewpoint blackmail that bullies into silence every contractor and subcontractor who has moral objections to homosexual behavior. This order gives activists a license to challenge their employers and, expose those employers to threats of costly legal proceedings and the potential of jeopardizing future contracts.

"Religious faith is not simply a matter of intellectual affirmation but of active practice. A religious organization which is denied the power to require its employees to conduct their lives in a way consistent with the teachings of their faith is an organization which is being denied the right to exercise its religion, period. People with deeply held convictions regarding the morality of certain types of sexual behavior should not be bound by the dictates of President Obama's agenda.

"The President's policies are keeping the economy in the tank. He strangled the financial and health sectors by passing a health care law that's trampling employers' freedom and crushing their bottom lines. Now, as if those burdens weren't enough, the President's party wants to tell companies how they should run their businesses, and how they can and cannot practice their moral convictions and religious faith. President Obama is legislating without Congress. Now, the American people will be left to sort out the costs to religious and constitutional liberties resulting from this rule by decree." - Family Research Council vice president Peter Sprigg, via press release.

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HRC Praises Obama's LGBT Record

DADT, hate crimes, marriage, and much more.

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LIVE VIDEO: President Obama Signs LGBT Employment Executive Order At 10AM

UPDATE: The ceremony has concluded.

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FL Gov. Rick Scott Waffles On Marriage

So this happened on Friday.
Fox 4 reporter Warren Wright asked the Governor, "Are you and Pam Bondi going to challenge the same sex ruling on Gay Marriage in Monroe County?" Governor Scott said, "People have different views. In 2008, Florida decided it would be a traditional marriage state. So the Attorney General will make the decision to go forward. But from my standpoint and probably hers, nobody wants discrimination. We have a court system that people have an opportunity to go to court and make sure their views are expressed." Fox 4 followed up, asking, "Are you saying you would like for Pam Bondi to refrain from pursing this?" "Well, its completely Bondi's decision what she does," replied Governor Scott.
When pressed further by reporters, Scott insisted on talking about his job creation plan.

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HomoQuotable - David Kyle Foster

"For over 10 years I lived the homosexual lifestyle, and for 34 years I have not. And there are very good reasons for that difference. To those who suggest that I never was homosexual, my response is, 'Does sleeping with over 1,000 men count?' Oh yes. I was homosexual, though like most, I never wanted to have such attractions. I saw the narcissism and arrested emotional development all around me, and in me. Guys flitting around like Peter Pan were sometimes cute and funny, and certainly nonthreatening, but I wanted to be a grown up. I wanted to be a man. I wanted to be strong, solid, stable and reliable. I recognized the obsession with youth and beauty that drove their fantasies and lusts and knew that once I entered my thirties, the thrill of being wanted would quickly come to an end. I cringed at the epidemic of perverse sexual behaviors commonly practiced and celebrated by gay culture and wanted nothing to do with them." - David Kyle Foster, opening a lengthy piece for Charisma News. Foster, you will be shocked to learn, has a new book and movie to sell.

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STUDY: New HIV Infections Drop In All US Groups Except Young Gay & Bisexual Men

According to an AMA study published this weekend, over the last decade new HIV infections have dropped by one-third. The decline was seen in all demographics except young gay and bisexual men.
The study is based on HIV diagnoses from all 50 states’ health departments, which get test results from doctors’ offices, clinics, hospitals and laboratories. The data span a decade, making this a larger and longer look at these trends than any previous study, said another study author, Amy Lansky of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The findings: 16 out of every 100,000 people ages 13 and older were newly diagnosed with HIV in 2011, a steady decline from 24 out of 100,000 people in 2002. Declines were seen in the rates for men, women, whites, blacks, Hispanics, heterosexuals, injection drug users and most age groups. The only group in which diagnoses increased was gay and bisexual men, the study found. The diagnosis rate is a direct measure of when people actually tested positive for the virus. The diagnoses may be identifying infections that happened recently or years before.
According to the CDC, only 45% of American adults have ever been tested for HIV.

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LEAKED: Draft Text Of President Obama's LGBT Workers Executive Order

This morning President Obama is expected to sign the executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT employees. Chris Geidner at Buzzfeed has an advance, but unconfirmed, copy of the text:
Further Amendments to Executive Order 11478, Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government, and Executive Order 11246, Equal Employment Opportunity

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act, 40 U.S.C. 101 et seq., and in order to provide for a uniform policy for the Federal Government to prohibit discrimination based on gender identity and take further steps to promote economy and efficiency in Federal Government procurement by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Amending Executive Order 11478.
Executive Order 11478, as amended, is hereby further amended as follows:
(a) The first sentence of section 1 is amended by substituting “sexual orientation, gender identity,” for “sexual orientation”.
(b) The first sentence of section 7 is amended by substituting “sexual orientation, gender identity,” for “sexual orientation”.

Sec. 2. Amending Executive Order 11246.
Executive Order 11246, as amended, is hereby further amended as follows:
(a) The first sentence of Section 202, paragraph (1) is amended by substituting “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin” for “sex, or national origin”.
(b) The second sentence of Section 202, paragraph (1) is amended by substituting “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin” for “sex, or national origin”.
( c ) The first sentence of Section 202, paragraph (2) is amended by substituting “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin” for “sex, or national origin”.
(d) The first sentence of Section 203, paragraph (d) is amended by substituting “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin” for “sex, or national origin”.

Section 3. General Provisions.
(a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an agency or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

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Matt Baume: Marriage News Watch

Clip recap:
Another week, and another win for marriage equality. This time, it's Florida. But the freedom to marry is in jeopardy in Colorado. Meanwhile an appeals court has set a date for oral argument in two states, but then said never mind. And the Department of Justice has indicated its plans for addressing the freedom to marry before the Supreme Court.

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Cardinal Francis George: America Is Being Destroyed By Tyranny Of Gay Marriage

"The imposition of a definition of marriage that destroys the natural meaning of marital union is becoming another test case for religious liberty. The law now holds that men and women are interchangeable in marriage, as if children did not need both a mother and a father to be born and raised with some security. These are laws that mark societies in decline, demographically as well as morally. What has happened to our vaunted American liberties? Except for property rights, they are all being traded off in favor of freedom of sexual expression.That 'freedom' has become the trump card in almost every social dispute. While the public conversation plays the game of liberal versus conservative, there is really only one issue: freedom versus tyranny, a tyranny masquerading as compassion and suppressing legally differences that seem to threaten abstract 'equality'. Americans are concerned about the economy, and rightly so. We are concerned with the loss of our place in the world, and rightly so. We should also be concerned that we are on the wrong side of what nature teaches us and therefore, at least over the long run, headed for historical failure as a society. - Cardinal Francis George, in a Catholic New World column republished by NOM.

PREVIOUSLY ON JMG: In January 2013, Cardinal George demanded that every Catholic in Illinois oppose same-sex marriage. In December 2012, Cardinal George declared that there is no such things as gay marriage because it cannot be consummated. In 2011, Cardinal George compared Chicago's gay pride parade to a parade of the Ku Klux Klan.

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SLOVAKIA: Anti-Gay Group Pushes For Referendum To Ban Gay Marriage

Via the Slovak Spectator:
The constitutional definition of marriage, which some gay-right-advocates openly called a ban on same-sex marriages, does not go far enough, some conservative activists say, as they gather signatures to force a referendum that would make the laws even stronger. Behind the referendum initiative is the Alliance for Family (AZR), which declares itself a non-partisan and non-religious organisation and which emerged during the preparations for the September 2013 March for Life as an alliance of dozens of pro-family organisations. It has collected over 300,000 signatures under its petition, which needs to be signed by 350,000 citizens in order to be binding for the president to hold a referendum. The AZR hopes to achieve this aim by the end of this summer, the Sme daily reported. The referendum could possibly be held together with the November 15 municipal elections.
The petition is being backed by Catholic bishops.

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Today In Creepy Robots

He'll order your Chinese takeout AND be your wingman.

(Tipped by JMG reader Ray)

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

MINNESOTA: Vikings Coach Suspended For Anti-Gay Remarks, Kluwe Vindicated

Early this year former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe declared that Vikings Special Teams Coach Mike Priefer had called for rounding up all gay people, putting them on an island, and "nuking it until it glows." Kluwe has contended that his departure from the team came, at least in part, because Priefer objected to his nationally famous advocacy for LGBT rights. On Friday, the Vikings announced that their investigation showed that Priefer had indeed made the anti-gay remarks and that he has been suspended for three games. Via CBS Sports:
The Vikings said that three-game suspension could be reduced to two games provided that Priefer "also attend individualized anti-harassment, diversity and sexual-orientation sensitivity training." Priefer also apologized in a statement. "I owe an apology to many people -- the Wilf family, the Minnesota Vikings organization and fans, my family, the LGBT community, Chris Kluwe and anyone else that I offended with my insensitive remark," Priefer said. "I regret what has occurred and what I said. I am extremely sorry but I will learn from this situation and will work on educating others to create more tolerance and respect." The team announced that it would donate $100,000 to LGBT rights charitable and educational organizations.
The Vikings report also contains "negative information" about Kluwe, prompted him to threaten to release more "dirty" stories about the Vikings. He also said that his $10M lawsuit against the team will continue. The Vikings' action against Preifer is being denounced as "homofascism" across Teabagistan.
More from Think Progress:
The Vikings lawyers acknowledge that Kluwe was encouraged by Vikings management to scale back his activism in support of LGBT rights, but insist it was completely unrelated to the substance of his activism. The analysis claims that “players and management were concerned about the distraction that Kluwe’s activism was creating, as opposed to the nature and content of his activism.” Of course, it was the “nature and content of his activism” that ultimately created the “distraction.” It’s hard to image if Kluwe was speaking out to reduce childhood obesity that it would have become an issue.

Although the full investigation has not been released, the Vikings lawyers did make sure to include information that casts Kluwe in a negative light. Specifically, the analysis alleges that Kluwe made crude jokes about the Penn State rape scandal. Kluwe appeared to confirm the allegations were true on Twitter but that the jokes were pervasive throughout the entire team. No one claims Kluwe was fired for the jokes so it’s unclear what relevance they had to the investigation.

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NEW JERSEY: Suspect Captured In Hook-Up Murder Of Two Seattle Gay Men

Early this month two Seattle gay men were found shot to death after meeting with a man they reportedly met on a hook-up app. On Friday the suspect in the murders was captured near Newark.
Ali Muhammad Brown, 29, was taken into custody in West Orange, N.J., Seattle police said. No other details about the arrest have been given. Brown faces two counts of aggravated murder in the first degree in connection with the deaths of 23-year-old Dwone Anderson-Young and 27-year-old Ahmed Said. According to the charging documents, a resident in the 500 block of 29th Avenue South heard gunshots around 2:30 a.m. June 1 and saw someone drive off in a silver car. Officers arrived and found the victims lying in the street dead from multiple gunshot wounds.
West Orange police say that Brown is wanted locally for the armed robbery of a convenience store and an attempted carjacking. Seattle police say they are investigating the murders as a possible hate crime. It's unclear when Brown might be extradited to Seattle as the local charges might be prosecuted first. (Tipped by JMG reader Frank)

RELATED:  Last month Philadelphia police arrested a man suspected in the rape, robbery, and beating of a tourist who met his assailant on Grindr. In a separate case, a Philadelphia-area man was reportedly beaten to death in May by someone he met on Grindr. There has been no arrest in that case.

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NEW JERSEY: Attacker Of Gay NYC Bartender Has Yet To Be Extradited

Two weeks ago New York City Eagle bartender Paul Martone was left in critical condition after a Hell's Kitchen street altercation involving his dog. Martone's attacker, Corey Pohan, 32, fled to his mother's home in suburban New Jersey where he remains in jail pending a hearing on local disorderly conduct charges for climbing onto the top of the Lincoln Tunnel toll plaza after leaping from the car of the NYPD detectives who were transporting him back to Manhattan.
During his appearance on a disorderly conduct charge, no-nonsense Judge Karen Boylan asked the surfer dude if he knew when he was going to be extradited to New York to face an assault rap. “No, I just walked up this ramp and sat here. I haven’t talked to anyone other than the public defender, and he said no,” Pohan whined. Boylan then told him she didn’t have enough information on the Jersey charge to proceed with the case. “It looks like we’re going to have to hold you over until next week“ she said, news that also sent the bruiser’s mom Barbara Pohan into hysterics. “Next week? Can’t we handle this today if he pleads guilty?”she cried out. “Mrs. Pohan, he has criminal contacts in Colorado. He has an extradition here to New York. He hasn’t spoken to the detectives who made the arrest here in Jersey. I have no discovery, so we’ll see you on the screen next week,” the judge replied. Pohan, dressed in green prison scrubs, sobbed uncontrollably as he left the chair in the video room in another section of the courthouse and walked out of view of the monitor.
The judge did not elaborate on Pohan's "criminal contacts" in Colorado. The NYPD has not yet disclosed what charges Pohan may face in Manhattan. Martone remains hospitalized. The incident spawned international headlines and a social media furor on whether Martone instigated the fight.

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Actor James Garner Dies At Age 86

Via the New York Times:
James Garner, the wry and handsome leading man who slid seamlessly between television and the movies but was best known as the amiable gambler Bret Maverick in the 1950s western “Maverick” and the cranky sleuth Jim Rockford in the 1970s series “The Rockford Files,” was found dead in his California home on Saturday night, the Los Angeles Police Department confirmed on Sunday. He was 86. Mr. Garner was a genuine star but as an actor something of a paradox: a lantern-jawed, brawny athlete whose physical appeal was both enhanced and undercut by a disarming wit. He appeared in more than 50 films, many of them dramas, but as he established in one of his notable early performances, as a battle-shy naval officer in “The Americanization of Emily” (1964) — and had shown before that in “Maverick” — he was most at home as an iconoclast, a flawed or unlikely hero.

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Sears Promotes Marriage Equality

Via Dan Avery at NewNowNext:
Four same-sex couples got married aboard a float sponsored by Sears at the recent Chicago Pride Parade. In the video below, the newlyweds discuss the unique experience and Sears reminds customers that its gift registry can help anyone get started on a new life together. (Nothing wrong with a little self-promotion.) The 121-year-old retailer, which was bought by KMart in 2005, joins Macy’s and JC Penney in launching public campaigns that embraces the LGBT community.

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