Chely Wright opens Kansas City youth center
KANSAS CITY — Lesbian country music star Chely Wright has worked with her non-profit foundation to open the LIKEME Lighthouse LGBT community center in Missouri’s largest city.
“This just gives so much hope to these outlying areas, that your major metropolitan area has a gay and lesbian center,” Wright told the Washington Post. “That would have meant everything to me had I been a kid growing up in Wellsville, knowing that there is a beautiful facility in our major city, that that was OK.”
Wright married her long-time girlfriend, LGBT activist Lauren Blitzer, in 2011.
State Dept. condemns anti-gay violence in Iraq
WASHINGTON — On the heels of reports that police in Iraq have been turning their back on honor killings targeting gays and those perceived as gay, advocates are applauding the U.S. Embassy in Iraq and State Department for a rapid condemnation of the killings.
“When NGOs here in Iraq first brought this issue to our attention, we immediately expressed our concern to the Government of Iraq, urged immediate measures to combat this violence, and undertook to try to ascertain the details of these attacks,” a representative from the embassy wrote veteran gay blogger Michael Petrelis, after an inquiry. “Along with the Embassy, the U.S. Department of State strongly condemns the recent violence and killings in Iraq by groups who appear to be targeting individuals based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, or personal expression. These acts of intolerance should have no place in any society.”
The New York Times reported this week that death squads in Iraq were targeting not only gays but also those being described as “emos” and “goths.” Reuters confirmed with hospitals the deaths of 14 under such circumstances with rights groups putting the number closer to 40.
North Carolinians oppose anti-gay amendment
RALEIGH, N.C. — A new Elon University poll released this week shows that a 54.2 percent of respondents in North Carolina either oppose or strongly oppose the proposed constitutional amendment that would bar recognition of same-sex couples, LGBT website Pam’s House Blend reported.
On the question of specifically banning civil unions and domestic partnerships, which the amendment would compel the state to do, the number opposed rises to 56.9 percent. The poll found that only 37.8 percent of respondents supported the amendment, indicating support for the ballot measure is still tenuous.
Anti-gay groups behind ‘Kony 2012’ video
LOS ANGELES — Though the video racked up tens of millions of views, and become a subject of concern among socially conscious celebrities, Alternet has reveled that the foundation funding the ‘Kony 2012’ viral video campaign about Ugandan strongman Joseph Kony, is an anti-gay organization with ties to California’s anti-gay amendment, Proposition 8.
The group Invisible Children produced the sleek video about the leader of anti-government guerrilla group Lord’s Resistance Army and its use of rape, murder and forced enlistment of child soldiers in his rebellion against the government of Uganda.
Alternet reveals that the producers of the film are funded by a group called The Caster Family Foundation, one of the biggest financial backers of the efforts to pass Prop 8. Invisible Children is also connected to other anti-gay groups, such as Lou Engle’s ‘The Call,’ Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, and others, some specifically tied to what has become known as Uganda’s “kill the gays” bill.