Speed Read: Thursday 12 December 2013


SURVEY BACKS ENDA: A survey of 1,002 adults December 5-8 by an independent polling firm for the National Journal found 66 percent think Congress should pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), 28 percent think it should “block” the legislation, and five percent gave no opinion. Those who said ENDA should be passed, were then asked whether ENDA should “include protections for transgender people –in other words, men who identify as women and women who identify as men,” 84 percent said yes, 14 percent no, two percent offered no opinion.

ONE PERCENTERS: An independent survey December 4-7 for NBC/Wall Street Journal found very few of 1,000 adults factored in President Obama’s position on same-sex marriage when deciding whether they were “proud” or “dissatisfied with” his presidency. Only one percent of the “proud” respondents and the “dissatisfied” ones cited the marriage issue as a factor in their feelings about the presidency.

UNAPOLOGETIC PROGRESSIVE: Openly lesbian gubernatorial candidate Heather Mizeur of Maryland told MSNBC host Chris Jansing (of Jansing & Co.) Wednesday that she would use tax revenues from the sale of marijuana to pay for universal pre-kindergarten classes. Mizeur, a Democratic state delegate, says marijuana laws have been “enforced with racial bias” and “detract” law enforcement from more serious crimes. She’s also proposed hiking the minimum wage to $16.70 an hour by the year 2022. She noted that, as an openly gay candidate who has chosen an African American minister as her running mate, her ticket offers a “very unique combination of people who are civil rights activists.” “In years past, that would seem like a very odd pairing but together, we are standing up to make sure that…everyone is treated equally, everyone has a voice.”

INDIA SLOGS BEHIND: The U.S. overturned laws banning sexual intimacy between same-sex partners in 2003. But the India Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld laws criminalizing same-sex relations. The court ruled that if the law, which calls for up to 10 years in prison for persons who engage in sex “against the order of nature,” should be changed, India’s Parliament should change it. Gay civil rights activist Gautum Bhan told the New York Times blog “India Ink”: “Ten years ago, the gay community might have hidden and gone undercover. This will only bring us out. Protests are happening simultaneously in cities across India right now. This is proof that the gay community in India is not going anywhere.”

PERSON OF THE YEAR: Time magazine’s “Person of the Year” for 2013 is Pope Francis. According to the article explaining the magazine’s choice, the decision was made in part because “how he is heard in countries where being gay is a crime and educating women for leadership roles is a heresy may have the power to transform cultures in which Catholicism is a growing, even potentially liberating force.” “Rarely has a new player on the world stage captured so much attention so quickly,” notes the article. … In his nine months in office, he has placed himself at the very center of the central conversations of our time: about wealth and poverty, fairness and justice, transparency, modernity, globalization, the role of women, the nature of marriage, the temptations of power.”

RUNNERS UP: As “runners up” for Person of the Year, Time named classified document leaker Edward Snowden, DOMA plaintiff Edith Windsor, Syrian President Bashar Assad, and right-wing Senator Ted Cruz.

One Response to Speed Read: Thursday 12 December 2013

  1. I’m the person of the year, just me being me!

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