Weekly Political Roundup

Flags

  • National Guard Lt. Dan Choi and former Army Capt. Jim Pietrangelo were arrested Thursday after chaining themselves to the White House fence to protest Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT). Pietrangelo was discharged under DADT in 2004, and Choi is in the process of being discharged under it now. Also arrested was activist Robin McGehee of GetEqual.org, who helped Choi and Pietrangelo with their protest.
  • Earlier in the day, the Senate Armed Services Committee held another hearing to discuss DADT. Former NATO commander John J. Sheehan asserted that the presence of gay troops was one reason the Dutch army had been unable to defend Srebrenica during the Bosnia war, a charge denied by the Dutch ambassador.
  • Will the studies launched by Defense Secretary Robert Gates helped justify a repeal of DADT, or are they just a way to stall? Lisa Keen investigates.
  • Activists held sit-ins at the Washington, D.C., and San Francisco offices of U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, demanding that she bring a vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to the floor by the end of the month. Ten were arrested, fined, and released.
  • Rev. Mary D. Glasspool was elected by a majority of bishops and dioceses of the Episcopal Church to be a suffragan bishop of Los Angeles, the church’s second openly gay or lesbian bishop and first lesbian one. The Archbishop of Canterbury, head of the worldwide Anglican Communion, called her election “regrettable.”
  • After the New Hampshire state House defeated two anti-equality bills in February, 80 out of 139 communities (57.6 percent) considered and rejected non-binding resolutions to create a statewide vote on the matter. Nine more have yet to consider the issue. (Via GLAD e-mail; not yet on Web site.)
  • Lambda Legal has filed a motion with the New Jersey Supreme Court seeking marriage equality on behalf of the plaintiffs in the original Lewis v. Harris lawsuit. The original lawsuit led to a ruling that said it was unconstitutional to treat same-sex couples differently, but left the remedy to the Legislature, which enacted civil unions.
  • The New York supreme court appellate division ruled that the state may annul a civil union from another state.

Around the world:

  • Three weeks after allowing Norrie mAy-welby to receive a new birth certificate with a “not specified” gender, the Australian government has changed its mind, and now says the certificate is invalid.
  • The New York Times profiles the gay men’s community in Cambodia.