A few items from round and about—but check out the bonus deal after the jump.
Schools and Youth
- Amanda, an incoming freshman at “a tiny high school in a tiny town in Massachusetts,” writes a letter about being the daughter of two moms and committing to creating change at her school and in her community.
- New York Gov. David Paterson signed the Dignity for All Students Act, making New York the 10th state to enact an anti-bullying law that includes specific protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression, among other characteristics.
- The Irish organization Marriage Equality has issued a new report called Voices of Children, documenting the experiences of 12 children growing up in Ireland with lesbian parents.
- Christopher Nordquist of Domestic Daddy writes at the Advocate of coming out—again and again—as a gay dad. (Thanks, Ryan!)
Custody, Visitation, and Parentage Cases
- Lesbian moms Vanessa Alenier and Melanie Leon spoke before the Florida Third District Court of Appeal, fighting to preserve Alenier’s adoption of her young nephew. The Department of Children and Families has requested the adoption be overturned because of the state law that prevents any lesbian or gay man from adopting. In January, a Miami-Dade circuit judge allowed the adoption, saying the ban was “unconstitutional on its face.” The more well known Florida adoption case of Frank Martin Gill was heard by the same court last August, and a ruling is still pending.
- The North Carolina Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case of Julia Boseman, the only openly gay member of the state legislature, who is fighting with her ex-partner Melissa Jarrell over the second-parent adoption Jarrell had consented to before the couple broke up. Jarrell now claims that state law prevents second-parent adoptions when one person is the biological parent. WWAY reports, however, that the state has allowed more than 200 such adoptions, and that if the Supreme Court upholds the lower court decision in the Boseman case, “more district court judges could allow these adoptions to take place.”
Politics and Law
- The Legislative Assembly of New South Wales, Australia, passed a bill to allow same-sex couples to adopt children. Faith-based adoption agencies may still refuse to place children with same-sex couples, and birth parents may still specify that they want their children to be raised by opposite-sex parents. The bill now goes to the upper house.
- Jenis av Rana, leader of the Faroe Islands political party Miðflokkurin, has refused an invitation from the Danish province’s prime minister to dine with Iceland prime minister (and mom) Johanna Sigurdardottir and her wife because their relationship violates the Bible’s teachings. (Wait. Even if one believes that same-sex relationships are a sin (and I don’t), didn’t Jesus make a point of dining with sinners?)
- Get the DVD of Our House, an award-winning documentary that profiles five gay and lesbian families with teen or preteen children, for 50 percent off—only $12.48 plus shipping—for a limited time from First Run Features. (Here’s my interview with filmmaker Meema Spadola. I receive nothing from these purchases.)