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Celebrating Harvey Milk Day (Or Not)


By Julia Rosen

Tomorrow is Harvey Milk’s birthday. It’s also the first annual official state holiday Harvey Milk Day. There are celebrations going on around the state, from parties, to prayers, to rallies and canvassing. Harvey Milk Day like Martin Luther King Jr Day was intended to also include school lessons about the life and achievements of Harvey.

But some people are refusing to honor Harvey. The Kern High School board of trustees in Bakersfield voted earlier this week to refuse to commemorate him, banning classrooms from “recognizing” Harvey. Despite organizing from local activists, the board voted 3 to 1 on the motion.

It gets worse, when you read the reasoning, from Ken Mettler Vice President of the board who said:

“We should recognize individuals based on their achievements, not based on their sexual orientation.”

It’s not surprising to then hear that Mettler was Mettler the Kern County chairman for Prop 8. He also bragged about his advocacy to get Easter and Christmas celebrated in Kern public schools. So Easter bunnies are ok, just not Harvey Milk.

People’s attitudes don’t automatically change just because a law is passed. We have a lot of work to do and Testimony is an important piece of the puzzle.



  • 1. Ronnie  |  May 21, 2010 at 9:43 am

    "The Life and Times of Harvey Milk"….the complete documentary….enjoy…If you haven't seen it yet….<3…Ronnie

  • 2. James Tuttle  |  May 21, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    Thank-You! I just watched the entire documentary. I Didn't know it existed. I'm going to watch it again tomorrow with my boyfriend. How can being gay not be a suspect class?

  • 3. PamC  |  May 21, 2010 at 11:46 pm

    I watched this documentary not long after coming out to myself in '92; really moving, I cried (of course) but I also felt so proud of us, and the movie introduced me to the possibility of finding my larger family–I was pretty isolated when I first came out, and still dealing with a messy divorce and post-evangelical guilt. Harvey is still my role model, the kind of selfless, humble, compassionate and actively loving human I would like so much to be.

  • 4. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 22, 2010 at 1:02 am

    Ronnie, thanks for posting this, and also for sending me the link in my personal email. I just finished watching it, and we really need to keep on fighting for our rights so that Mayor Moscone's and Harvey's deaths are not in vain. We must continue to let people see us for who we are, so that, like the union man whose opinion of us changed after becomeing involved with Harvey, we can educate others to the truth. However, we must still continue to fight in the courts, in the legislatures, and in other fields as well. We have to continue because like Harvey said, "YOU GOTTA GIVE 'EM HOPE!"

  • 5. Ronnie  |  May 22, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    @ James T. and Richard W….you're welcome…I have not watched the whole movie yet….I've been back and forth to the computer all day….but I'm glad you enjoyed it….<3…Ronnie

  • 6. Sagesse  |  May 22, 2010 at 3:48 am

    I'm old enough to remember Harvey Milk, and saw the movie, but I've never seen the documentary. Unfortunately this particular video is blocked in Canada. Any of the Canadians here have a link that would work? Watching would be a nice project for a holiday long weekend.

  • 7. Bob  |  May 22, 2010 at 4:05 am

    Sagesse, I haven't tried downloading this particular video, but I'm sure if you go to your local gay video store (you are in Montreal right) you'll find it.
    I live on Salt Spring Island, we are a small community but a large number of gays, last spring it was featured in our local community film fest, and we had discussion group after, it was so amazing to see the movie in that setting, of neighbours.
    And I'm sure it's also available at any video store because it won awards at the oscars, so it did hit main stream.
    Pam C. I bawled too, and yes it makes us aware of our larger family, I like when we are referred to as The Rainbow People, we can more readily identify with indeginous peoples, cause they too are in every part of the globe, and especially the fact that (in Canada they are referred to as First Nations) they honor gay people very highly, calling them two spirited, we hae the same struggles to maintain our personal identity, and fight against religion imposing itself on us, almost anielating Native Spirituality, but it is coming back strong. We belong to a faimly called the Rainbow People, We bring full spectrum to reality.

  • 8. Kathleen  |  May 22, 2010 at 4:19 am


    Are you able to watch videos at Hulu?

  • 9. Sagesse  |  May 22, 2010 at 4:48 am

    Thanks for the link, Kathleen. It's blocked on all the video sites I've checked because the production company has not licensed it for broadcast in Canada. Happens fairly regularly here. I'll find it eventually :).

  • 10. Kathleen  |  May 22, 2010 at 5:07 am

    I've run into that when I'm visiting family in England. I often can't view the video episodes from my local PBS station when I'm outside the US.

    And, for the record, I'm old enough to remember Harvey, too. I remember my children asking me why I was crying, on the day I heard he'd been assassinated.

  • 11. Ronnie  |  May 22, 2010 at 5:26 am

    If anybody has iTunes….you can rent "The Times of Harvey Milk" for $2.99 or buy it for $5.99

    You don't get a tangible product…but it is more affordable..and you don't have to pay shipping….

    I found it today….just thought you would like to know….<3…Ronnie

  • 12. fiona64  |  May 24, 2010 at 3:22 am

    This film is an amazing, moving testament to a man who was a whole lot more than his "sexual orientation," as the Kern County idiot wants to reduce him.


  • 13. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 21, 2010 at 10:29 am

    Here in our house we will be celebrating Harvey Milk Day, whether anyone else in HOpe Mills, Fayetteville, or ny other part of Cumberland County or North Carolina is. Harvey is an important part of the civil rights movement, whether the haters want to believe that or not.

  • 14. Felyx  |  May 21, 2010 at 11:14 am

    I agree with Mettler…we should stop honoring those with sexual orientation like Washington. Lincoln, King, et als and only celebrate religious asexuals like St. Valentine, St. Patrick, the Easter Bunny and the Pope's Nose….and of course the most specialistest religulous one of them all….that guy who managed to piss off so many people that he got himself beaten, humiliated and speared to death so that his self-righteous advocates could torture others and still celebrate his fictitious birthday with opulent gift-giving and pagan ritual yule trees with well hung large low-hanging balls…..

    ….Got Milk?

    May you all have a Merry Milk Day! <3 Felyx

  • 15. L.K. Louise  |  May 21, 2010 at 1:57 pm

    Tomorrow I'll be wearing my anti-prop 8 shirt to my north Texas brunch group (2 liberals, the other regulars are all republicans). I'm excited to talk more Harvey Milk, as none of them ever read a biography or saw a movie. two of my strongly conservative friends have enthuiasiastically embraced participating in a script with me. Honestly, coming out was the hardest thing I may have done, but it makes me excited for times like these, when even those who theoretically disagreed realized that I was a person deserving of equal and full rights with my partner. Testimony works. It may have not changed my mom, but it did allowmy dad to love me as me, openly. It may have upset my sorority advisors, but my 200+ sisters supported me.
    This is the first day to be open with people I've never met, but it's only the first of many, and I'm excited. An early (and unfortunately late) Happy Birthday to Harvey Milk from Texas!

  • 16. Lora  |  May 21, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    Good for you! I was just in Texas a few weeks ago…my family moved there…and I don't know how you do it, unless you were born there.
    Being from California and going to Texas is a definate culture shock. My parents are FAR, FAR right wing…it's hard.

    What a great day to be open in public for the first time…
    Have a great day tomorrow and hopefully educate a few people along the way!!

  • 17. Bob  |  May 21, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    you go Louise, MILK that party, thanks for sharing, and especially for having the couragwe to come out.

    sending love , the source of all energy for times like these.

  • 18. Dpeck  |  May 21, 2010 at 2:17 pm

    There are going to be a lot of activities in the Castro tomorrow on Harvey Milk day, some silly and celebratory, some more serious and political, and I'll be attending as many as possible. I'll be sporting my favorite Harvey Milk T-Shirt with a picture of Harvey on the front and his famous quote "YOU GOTTA GIVE 'EM HOPE" in huge block letters on the back. I wore it to work earlier this week (I work in silicon valley, an hour's drive away from San Francisco) and when a coworker asked me about it I took the opportunity to tell them about Harvey and what was happening this weekend and why.

    At some point during the day, between the street parties and the political speeches, I'll take a minute to stop by the site of Harvey's old camera shop with the mural painted on the apartment wall above, showing Harvey looking through the window and smiling down at the folks on the street. There's a small bronze plaque set in the sidewalk there, with a dedication to Harvey. I'll offer a moment of silence and then it's back to the party and back to the political action. I think Harvey would approve.

  • 19. Pam  |  May 21, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    August 18 2006 was the day I loaded up a moving truck and got out of Bakersfield… and I have never looked back.

  • 20. ParisLV  |  May 21, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    Whether the school board agrees or not, teachers CAN stlll mention it at least, LOL.. I know I would!! I know I did today, hehe…

  • 21. Michelle Evans  |  May 21, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    In celebration of Harvey Milk, Cherie and I just returned from a major event in Santa Ana, CA, this evening. We had several parts to the event and several hundred people attended. I was part of the Orange County Equality Coalition Storytellers group, and got up on stage to tell people a small bit of my story as a transgender person, along with four other friends who told their stories as gays and lesbians. Our overriding theme was appropriately: HOPE.

    We were all amazed at the positive response to all we did this evening, and from a personal perspective is was absolutely wonderful to be a part of it all. I had people coming up throughout the rest of the night telling me how they had been moved by my story, and those of my friends.

    In addition to the Storytellers group, we had several others give presentations, including a local politician who has fought for LGBT rights, and truly wonderfully, a priest from Uganda, speaking about the importance of what we are doing here to support those in Uganda who are under threat. And then we had a performance from the beautiful singing group, Men Alive, which really got everyone energized. The finale for the evening was a big screen showing of "The Times of Harvey Milk."

    Wish all of my friends here on the Trial Tracker site could have been there with us tonight. It was a most memorable evening and a great way to celebrate Harvey's birthday.

  • 22. Kathleen  |  May 21, 2010 at 5:45 pm

    It sounds wonderful, Michelle. Next time something like this comes up, let us know. I'm close enough that I could have come and certainly would have if I'd known about it!


  • 23. Michelle Evans  |  May 22, 2010 at 2:13 am

    I'm sorry you didn't get the word about the event. One of the main sponsors of the event was the OC Equality Coalition (OCEC) and I believe you can sign up for email notifications through their web site:

    I'll try to remember to post something on the Trail Tracker site next time, too. Just so busy getting ready for it this time that it never occurred to me to do that here. I'm not really sure how the word was gotten out to the people in the area. I think there was a facebook page or something like that set up, but I don't use that, so not sure.

  • 24. Paul Cook-Giles  |  May 21, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    Joe and I walked down to the Yost theatre (we live just a few blocks north) for the Milk celebration– wonderful to see so many people celebrating civil liberty and Harvey's achievements and dream. Just one note: Santa Ana's City Council — in the heart of conservative Orange County– was the first in the OC to pass a resolution declaring today Harvey Milk Day. Little by little, we're making progress.

  • 25. Joel  |  May 22, 2010 at 2:12 am

    Funny that Santa Ana came up! I was born and raised behind the Orange Curtain, my parents are probably the only liberal Jews in Huntington Beach. Mark and I were married in County Courthouse in Santa Ana on August 28, 2008.

    Happy Birthday, Mr. Milk!

  • 26. Gina  |  May 21, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    What ca I do to recognize the day? I can't go to a party or throw one. I'm a mom of three and have soccer games all day. Should I wear a rainbow lapel pin? Or a "got Mllk?" pin? On Memorial Day we place flags outside the house, on Christmas we wear red and green…I need a simple subtle way to recognize. One that may just encourage one of the other soccer parents to ask me about it…

  • 27. Straight Ally #3008  |  May 22, 2010 at 3:21 am

    [youtube =]

  • 28. Michelle Evans  |  May 22, 2010 at 10:49 am

    Love this video. We showed it last night at our event in Santa Ana to kick off our Storytellers segment. We then used the theme of hope throughout our stories to tie into what he had to say.

  • 29. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 22, 2010 at 11:41 am

    Thanks, Straight Ally #3008. This is twice today I have cried. The first was earlier when I watched the documentary Ronnie was so kind as to post the link for, and again just now.
    We truly need another Harvey Milk to step up, to man up in the truest sense of the word (rather than the distorted, often haterist form of the word) and stand up for our community–for our ENTIRE community, whether the gay men, the lesbians, the bisexuals, the transgenders, the questioning, the intersexed. We ALL need the hope Harvey gave us in 1977 when he was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Yes, even I took hope when he was elected. I hoped that I would be able to come out of the closet then, and have a safe place to go to if I were driven from my home. I was planning out how to come out and had even set the date, but then the very day I was originally planning to come out, Dan White assassinated Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk.
    I kept the closet door shut for many years after that, until I was already out on my own and working with a steady paycheck. I hope that in honor of Harvey's momory, we all finally unite in one accord to fight for FULL EQUALITY and political power so that no other teenager has to endure what I endured.
    No one should have to live his or her life in the closet for any reason whatsoever. But it is up to us to pull together and take action to make this become a reality.
    And I know we can do it. The question is, are we man and woman enough to do it? Will we step up as a community, put our divisiveness behind us, and instead, celebrate our community's full diversity in order to finally bring Harvey's dream to its full fruition?
    I think we can, and we will. Please prove me right on this everybody.

  • 30. Straight Ally #3008  |  May 22, 2010 at 3:32 am

    This November will be the THIRTY-SECOND anniversary of the defeat of Prop 6, the "Briggs Initiative" that Harvey Milk was instrumental in defeating. Think about that…a lot of posters in our community here weren't even born yet. I look at it as a sort of Moon landing for civil rights, a feat that that is truly astonishing given that Prop 8 would pass 30 years later.

    Is seems darkly symbolic to me that Harvey Milk is gone, but Briggs himself is still with us, pushing 80.

  • 31. Ronnie  |  May 22, 2010 at 8:13 am


    Please join Madonna and I, in saving the lives of these two innocent men by adding your name to Madonna's statement…Thank you…<3…Ronnie

  • 32. Kathleen  |  May 22, 2010 at 10:06 am

    Has anyone else heard this?

    Media Coverage Of Malawi Convictions Erases Chimbalanga’s Identity As A Woman

  • 33. Michelle Evans  |  May 22, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    It is a horrible thing, but also very common, that a trans person is dismissed as being irrelevant. In this case, to have the gay media change the status of the trans woman to gay to fit their own agenda is even worse. We are all having a tough enough time to be accepted throughout the world, but to ignore the fact that someone is trans by the LGB community, is something beyond words.

    I will give a specific example that really bothered me a couple of years ago. When Lawrence King was murdered in his classroom by another student, the media (to this day) portrays him as a gay young man. It doesn't matter that he was experimenting with girl's clothing and makeup–a sure sign that he was most likely exploring the fact of being transgender. Yet, not once in any media coverage–straight or gay–was there any mention of the fact that he might actually be trans.

    Right now, the religious zealots are using the "horrors" of transgender people as the rallying cry to defeat ENDA. They use stories that talk about how if it were to pass that drag queens would be allowed to teach their children in school, and things of a similar nature.

    We are vilified by most everyone, and to be so even within the supposed LGB and T community we are all a part of, just shows how far we really have to go yet for acceptance in this world.

  • 34. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 22, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Michelle, you are so right. That is why I was very proud of our local LGBT newspaper QNotes, with regard to their coverage of a transwoman who was murdered in Charlotte on 3 April. QNotes led the charge to the Charlotee-Mecklenberg Police Department to begin referring to the murder victim in the feminine rather than using masculine pronouns. This is one of the few times I have ever seen an LGBTQQI newpaper do this. What will it take before EVERYONE in the LGBTQQIA community is accepted as living, breathing, human beings with feelings, emotions, thoughts, and a desire to live in peace and be who they are born to be?

  • 35. Michelle Evans  |  May 22, 2010 at 5:04 pm


    It is wonderful that there are groups in the media and elsewhere that do try to get it right. It is so important for trans people to be recognized as the people they are–by using the proper pronouns and proper name. My own mother still doesn't get this and hurts me almost every time we speak because she doesn't want to understand, even four years after coming out to her, and two years after surgery.

    Speaking of which, on a personal note, today would have been Harvey's 80th birthday, and it just happened coincidentally that this is also the anniversary of the date I had my surgery and completed my transition. Somehow seems appropriate, but it was never planned, just serendipitous.

  • 36. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 23, 2010 at 9:39 am

    Michelle, I think Harvey would have been very proud to know you, and to see your courage. I think it is very appropriate that you finished your transition to be fully yourself on the anniversary of Harvey's birthday. And I hope that in honor of both these momentous occasions being on the same day, that you were did something extra-special for yourself. You deserve it.

  • 37. Kathleen  |  May 24, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Here's additional information in follow-up to these story:

    Also discusses how people can help.

  • 38. Dpeck  |  May 22, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    ….. A follow – up to post #16: I just got home from the Castro and it was a great day. Large crowds of people at all the events, with coverage on every major TV station here in the bay area. And my idea of observing a moment of silence at Harvey's old shop? Well, it turns out that several hundred other people had the same idea 🙂 We started as a crowd in front of some political speeches near the huge rainbow flag at Market and Castro, and then the entire crowd marched down Castro with a brass band playing as we went, in an informal parade down the sidewalk to Harvey's old shop. Then some more speeches and the whole crowd observed a moment of silence just before a new, larger plaque was unveiled as the TV cameras recorded it all.

  • 39. Santa Barbara Mom  |  May 22, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    Thanks for sharing! I've haven't talked to my son yet today, but am anxious to hear all about how he celebrated in the Castro. We were in SF last week end for the Bay to Breakers Race, so couldn't go back up this week-end. It's definitely humbling to stand in front of Harvey Milk's old shop and see him looking down at you. Always puts a lump in my throat.

  • 40. Ed  |  May 23, 2010 at 7:47 am

    Michelle, Congratulations on your second anniversary of becoming yourself fully! You have shows tremendous courage by making your transition in the face of resistance from both family and society. Your patience in educating us in the LGB community is appreciated. Future generations will look back to you as one of the pioneers of our society learning to accept the reality of different biologies and different psychologies- My best to you!


  • 41. Michelle Evans  |  May 23, 2010 at 9:30 am

    Thanks Ed. Yes, it has been an incredible journey, to say the least. At one point in my life I was so afraid of moving forward, and also facing the possibility of losing Cherie, that I wished that there was some sort of a pill I could take that would somehow make me be okay with my male body and just be able to forget all of the conflict in my brain. The only thing that would have done that would have actually been a frontal lobotomy! 🙂

    Now that the hardships and trauma of the years it takes to transition are long past, I am absolutely glad that no such magic pill to "cure" transgenderism exists. I feel I now have a very unique perspective on the world that few others have experienced, because of all I went through.

    I slept-walked through most of my life hating myself, yet the rest of the world treated me great because I was a middle-class white male. After transition, I can see everything from literally the opposite end of the spectrum as a transgender female. I am pretty much the lowest on the totem pole nowadays with regard to how most of the world perceives me. But even with all the hatred, I can finally live with myself, and Cherie is still here beside me, knowing too that I did the only thing I could to stay alive.

    In a few days, I am making my final attempt to reconnect with my mom. She has always canceled out of any trip I had planned, and the continued attempts are wearing me out. So please all wish me luck on Wednesday that she doesn't cancel again before I hit the road to head to her place.

  • 42. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 23, 2010 at 9:35 am

    Here in Hope Mills, NC, we will be praying for the best for you, Michelle. Yes, you do have a very unique perspective on life, and one that is very valuable and needs to be shared with everyone. We do pray that your mother will finally accept you for who you are, and realize that you are the same person, but now you are in the proper physical body. Please let us know how it goes.♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

  • 43. Ronnie  |  May 23, 2010 at 9:44 am

    Good luck….mmmmuah…<3…Ronnie

  • 44. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 23, 2010 at 9:42 am

    Off-topic, but just wanted to share with everybody here. I just found out a little bit ago that I have been cast in a locally produced short film called "Food," It is a horror flick, and will be part of a feature film that the writer/director/producer is planning to take to several major independent film festivals. Thanks for all your kind wishes and support. You guys have really been great, and I look forward to being able to let you in on the release date when I find out about it.

  • 45. fiona64  |  May 24, 2010 at 3:26 am

    I am so excited for and proud of you, Richard.

    That's my Big Brother!

    Love you,

  • 46. christina  |  May 23, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    off topic as well @ Michelle. my ex recently lost her insurance because she turne 21. she's been on hormones for over a year (she's mtf trans) i was wondering if you know any insurance that pays for the surgery? if sh doesnt get it, she will kill herself in the end….

  • 47. Michelle Evans  |  May 24, 2010 at 4:22 am

    Christina, it depends on the state and the employer. There are numerous companies that now provide full insurance benefits for surgical procedures for transgender individuals. Some examples are Disney and Bank of America, as well as working for the City of San Francisco.

    For those not working, if you happen to be in California and eligible for Medi-Cal, there was a court case several years ago which came down in favor of them having to cover surgery. I don't know how difficult it is to use that system for something like this, but I know it has been done on at least a few occasions. And if you are outside California, each state has their own version under the federal Medicaid program, but I have no idea if the court ruling was just applicable here, or if it covers the entire US.

    I hope this info is of assistance. It is still a rare thing to find an insurance that covers this, but it is up to the company, and not just a specific insurance carrier. In other words, two different companies could have identical insurance carriers, such as Kaiser, Blue Cross, etc, yet the actual coverage offered by each company could differ widely depending on the policy they have purchased.

    It is still a basic rule of thumb for transgender individuals that most of us have to pay for any surgery out of our own pocket. This is the reason that places like Thailand are so popular because they do excellent surgery, yet cost a fraction of what it is here in America or Canada.

  • 48. Tony Douglass in Ca  |  May 23, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    Actually, she may want to do some checking, some of the new healthcare legislation brought about by Obama covers that specifically. A quick Google search showed this article that seems to give an unbiased view, including the ability to keep "adult children" on the insurance. There is a chance they could pay more, but that's nothing compared to her trying to find her own insurance. Here's the article:

  • 49. Ed  |  May 24, 2010 at 1:45 am

    Michelle, I will be thinking of you between now and Wednesday. I hope your mother is able to stop hurting herself (and you) by rejecting you. And Christine, the relationship between your ex and her parents is critical there as well. I was trying to get my 24 year old son back on my coverage until he is 26 (he is starting grad school overseas in September) but I cannot add him until the new policy year in January- which is not what the law appeared to envision.

  • 50. christina  |  May 24, 2010 at 4:09 am

    ok. we've both been looking for insurance. im scared for her, because she needs this. we even had an appointment with Dr. christine something in Philly last month. She's a trans woman herself who preforms 2 sex-change operations a week. She seemed very helpful and kind when talking to us avbout everything.

    she had everything she needed signed in case her insurance (gateway) fought against the surgery. then she lost her insurance cause her family is low income and had free insurance. but she's 21 now and got dropped. she needs her hormones every month, and her job does not give her the hours. we only dated a short while and yes iv'e known her only since march, but im trying desperatly to help find information to help her. so far iv'e come up with ZIP. Except U of Penn collage which their studant insurance plan covers the surgery.

    sol if anyone on here can help me and her with info, thank you

  • 51. Michelle Evans  |  May 24, 2010 at 4:29 am

    Christina, this is a difficult dilemma to say the least, and there is unfortunately not a simple answer. With regard to hormone treatment, that is something that is much more common and easier to get through insurance than surgery itself. I also know that there are some insurance carriers that also will offer a partial surgery (usually an orchiectomy–which removes the source of testosterone in MtF clients), which can greatly aid the situation for those unable to pay for the entire surgery.

    And you are correct that many colleges also offer surgery now as part of their student coverage, but again would be on a school by school basis.

    Just staying on a parent's policy may not help, except to keep the hormones, as there is a good chance that the surgery would not be covered on their plan as well.

  • 52. Andrea  |  May 24, 2010 at 4:40 am

    Another option might be the old-fashioned "Run away to San Francisco" idea. SF has its own universal insurance plan, and IIRC, its youth services ( runs up through age 24 so she'd still be eligible for help there.

  • 53. Kathleen  |  May 24, 2010 at 5:59 am

    UPDATE: Proponents' attorney Charles Cooper has written a letter to Judge Walker, objecting to public broadcast of the closing arguments. Letter available here:

  • 54. Sagesse  |  May 24, 2010 at 6:27 am


    What is gratifying is that it is the mainstream media making the request. There would be major visibility if it happens. That said, my bet is that the 9th circuit will pick its battles, and will not pick this one. It's a diversion, and could potentially delay the proceedings or antagonize the Supreme Court, without a whole lot of benefit.

    The judge making the call will be the chief judge of the 9th Circuit, Kozinski, which distances Walker from the decision. He did his best.

  • 55. Kathleen  |  May 24, 2010 at 6:37 am

    While it's true that Kozinski would need to approve, I think procedure requires that Walker make a formal request before Kozinski can say yea or nay. So, I think the decision will be seen as Walker's.

  • 56. Sagesse  |  May 24, 2010 at 6:01 am

    White House and Congress Meet on ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

    Here's hoping they don't gut the repeal legislation in the process.

  • 57. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 24, 2010 at 7:23 am

    Here's what I just found about the DADT talks on Yahoo from the AP:

  • 58. fiona64  |  May 24, 2010 at 8:04 am

    In the spirit of Harvey Milk and "you've got to give them hope" …

    Last night at MCC San Jose, we were fortunate enough to have Rev. Elder Freda Smith present her "purple grass" sermon. Many people present had heard it before, but I was not one of them. Let me tell you something — I sobbed. This was a beautiful, moving story about hope and being different.

    As I think most of you know my ideas about "god" do not coincide perfectly with Christianity. Nonetheless, this sermon spoke to me — to the little girl who had been shunned for being different.

    This site has links for the sermon (it's in 5 parts because of the file size, I would guess). It really is worth listening to. I think you all know by now I'm not one to proselytize, and I don't think I'm doing that here.

    It's a beautiful story about hope, really.


  • 59. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 24, 2010 at 8:08 am

    And keep your fingers crossed for all of us in North Carolina who will be going to Raleigh for the ENC Day of Action with our General Assembly. After we get home tomorrow evening, if I find any of our news agencies here covered it, I will put up a series of posts with the links to each part of the coverage. And I will als have them available on my blog if this happens.

  • 60. Sagesse  |  May 24, 2010 at 9:35 am

    "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: Allied Military Leaders Navigate Gay Military Service"

    This has gotten very little press. On Thursday, the Palm Centre brought together generals from the 25 countries that allow LGBT servicemembers to serve openly. Bottom line, which has been reported by Palm before…. it had no effect on enlistment, morale or unit cohesion, there were no mass resignations. Furthermore, they all implemented the change without delay or deliberation, and it went fine. General Sheehan tried to say the Netherlands was not an elite fighting force, but the Brits and the Canadians in particular are recognized as formidable partners to the US in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • 61. Bob  |  May 24, 2010 at 10:31 am

    Formidable for sure, but partners welll, it's a screwed up relationship, the U.S. calls the shots, we pick up the pieces, Hillary, honored us and admitted they couldn't go it alone,

    But as ally forces we have no say , or as of yet have not taken a stand about who we're fighting with, let alone what we're fighting for.

    We are the silent partner, working alongside and for a boss, that discriminates, while saying nothing, I think only the Brits so far have spoke out about this.

    As Canadians, what would it take to get our government to make a simillar statement,

  • 62. website  |  May 17, 2013 at 4:52 pm

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