News & Notes

HEADLINES: Maine’s Catholics, Jamaica’s Bad Boycott?, Baghdad’s Gay Bash

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JAMAICAN BOYCOTT Is the ban on all things Jamaica doing more harm than good? Says Gareth Henry, former program manager and co-chair of the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-sexuals and Gays: “This boycott is a slap in the face and will force the (GLBT) community into hiding and increase the level of violence. Already the boycott is being used as ammunition towards the gay and lesbian community. While intentions are good, its also hurting good people on the ground.”

BAGHDAD PRIDE While Iraq’s gays fear having their anuses glued shut, the U.S. Embassy will host gay pride next Friday for its own diplomats. [WaPo]

CATHOLIC CRUNCH The Roman Catholic Diocese of Maine stands accused of violating its tax-exempt status by helping collect signatures for a ballot measure to repeal same-sex marriage. [AP]

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GOING SOLO Scissor Sisters lead guitarist Del Marquis just dropped his own solo album. “I never really knew I was going to do music. I started off in design and being in the [Scissor] Sisters was a really fortuitous accident. I’ve fulfilled so many fantasies with that band that left me with a hole saying ‘What haven’t I done? What would I like to do before its all over?’ because you never know when it might end. I felt like this was necessary and I need to do this.” [The New Gay]

GAY INDIANS “A Coquille Indian Tribe law allowing same-sex marriage took effect this week, and two women plan to marry Sunday on the tribe’s Coos Bay reservation. Tribal member Kitzen Branting, 26, and her partner, Jeni Branting, 28, who now live in Edmonds, Wash., will become the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Oregon, though their marriage will be recognized only by the tribe. … The tribe wanted to work out laws governing child support issues before activating the law. It took effect Wednesday, said Melissa Cribbins, assistant tribal attorney.” [The Oregonian]

AUSTRALIA Gay advocates blast the Rudd Government for refusing to recognize civil unions. Says Australian Coalition for Equality spokeperson Corey Irlam: “The reason the ACT doesn’t yet have the type of civil union scheme it wants it that successive federal governments don’t want same-sex relationships officially solemnised and celebrated. It’s prejudice pure and simple.” [SX]