Transgender Officer Living His Dream — As a Cop and a Man

December 1, 2009

by Rosemary Winters | Salt Lake Tribune

As a child, Kerry Bell dreamed of growing up to become a policeman — both a police officer and a man.

Becoming a cop was relatively simple — Bell joined the Bountiful Police Department 14 years ago. Becoming a man took more time.

Born female, Bell came out as transgender about a year and a half ago and started a transition to a new life as a man. He always had felt male, but did not think switching genders was a viable option until he saw transgender people gaining wider acceptance, along with advances in medical technology.

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President Obama’s World AIDS Day Proclamation

December 1, 2009

Our Nation joins the world in celebrating the extraordinary advancements we have made in the battle against HIV and AIDS, and remembering those we have lost. Over the past three decades, brave men and women have fought devastating discrimination, stigma, doubt, and violence as they stood in the face of this deadly disease. Many of them would not be here today, but for the dedication of other persons living with HIV, their loved ones and families, community advocates, and members of the medical profession. On World AIDS Day, we rededicate ourselves to developing a national AIDS strategy that will establish the priorities necessary to combat this devastating epidemic at home, and to renewing our leadership role and commitments abroad.

Though we have been witness to incredible progress, our struggle against HIV/AIDS is far from over. With an infection occurring every nine-and-a-half minutes in America, there are more than one million individuals estimated to be living with the disease in our country. Of those currently infected, one in five does not know they have the condition, and the majority of new infections are spread by people who are unaware of their own status. HIV/AIDS does not discriminate as it infiltrates neighborhoods and communities. Americans of any gender, age, ethnicity, income, or sexual orientation can and are contracting the disease.

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Watch Rachel Maddow on Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill and Rick Warren

December 1, 2009


Transgender Protections Win Unanimous Passage

December 1, 2009

by Brian Patrick Thorton | Spangle Magazine

On a night when the soaring Glenville High School football team generated a more raucous discussion than significant civil-rights legislation, Cleveland City Council voted unanimously to extend the existing nondiscrimination ordinance to transgender people.

As many as 100 supporters filled the cavernous council chamber with applause — twice. President Martin Sweeney wryly explained to audience members that the first round of cheers accompanied a motion to suspend the rules, so moments later — upon actual passage — supporters upped their joyous expression with a standing ovation.

By adding the words “gender identity or expression” to a criminal law that provides protection in areas of employment, housing and public accommodations, council members took a huge step forward, supporters said.

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My Gay Thanksgiving

December 1, 2009

by Linda Villarosa | The Root

A few months ago over dinner with my mother, I leaned across the table and asked, “Do you wish I was straight?”

During a pause that seemed at least nine months pregnant, I felt myself dancing with the demon I thought had left my party long ago.

Over the past 20 years, my mother has moved from standing over me and shouting, “You are NOT gay because no daughter of mine would ever be a lesbian,” to assuming her place at the head of the large and colorful network that we call our family.

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DC Council Takes First Vote on Same-Sex Marriage

December 1, 2009

from the Associated Press

In the first of two votes on allowing same-sex marriage in the nation’s capital, the District of Columbia City Council has passed the bill 11 to 2.

The D.C. Council voted for the first time Tuesday. The bill has been expected to pass, as 10 of the 13 council members co-sponsored its introduction. A second, final vote is expected for later in the month, and D.C.’s mayor has promised to sign the bill.

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