Anti-Transgender losers lose again I-1552 fails to qualify for November ballot

by Mike Andrew – SGN Staff Writer Once again, the campaign to deny basic rights for Transgender people has failed. The Washington Secretary of State’s office announced on July 7 that the I-1552 campaign cancelled its 3pm appointment to turn in the petitions that would have put the measure on the November ballot. July 7 was the last day to submit petitions to put the measure before voters. I-1552 would have repealed 10-year-old legal protections for Transgender people and denied them the right to use gender-appropriate restroom facilities. HRC said the initiative’s failure was ‘a victory for equality and validation for Washington’s non-discrimination laws that ensure fair and equal treatment for LGBTQ people in housing, employment and public accommodations.’ According to the initiative’s backers, they fell 20,000 signatures short of the number required to qualify for the ballot, in spite of spending m

Your own Bi Diary 10-16 July

It’s a new bisexual week in our calendar of bi events – and it’ s a active week. Tuesday night in London Bisexual Underground meet at The Blue Content, 81 Newman Street, London. It’s a pub meetup and; get more information here. Also that night it’s Brum Bi Group, a community-centre space group at the LGBT Centre, 38 Holloway Circus, Birmingham. […]

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What will happen if and when anti-Trans groups submit I-1552 petitions?

by Mike Andrew – SGN Staff Writer By the time you read this, we’ll know whether I-1552 petitions have been submitted to the Secretary of State’s office. Just Want Privacy – the inaptly named group that’s backing the initiative to take restroom access away from Transgender people – has an appointment with the Secretary of State for 3pm on Friday, July 7. If they don’t show up, they’re done. No initiative goes on the ballot in November and Transgender people can continue using gender-appropriate restroom facilities. If they do show, however, things have only just gotten started. We may not know for a long time whether I-1552 will be on the November ballot. First, the Secretary of State will decide if there are enough valid signatures – 259,622 – for the initiative to qualify for the ballot. Of course, the state won’t examine each and every signature. ‘We’ll take a random sample,’ the Se

WorldPride 2017 in Madrid a Pride trifecta

by Ed Walsh – SGN Contributing Writer More than a million people flooded Madrid amid tight security last weekend for WorldPride 2017, which for the first time combined WorldPride and EuroPride with Madrid Pride going along for the ride effectively making it a Pride trifecta. The festivities lasted ten days, ending on Sunday July 2, with the passing of the baton to New York City, which will host WorldPride 2019, during the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. The closing ceremony also included a memorial tribute to gay flag creator Gilbert Baker, who died in March. The WorldPride parade began on Saturday, July 1, at 5pm and didn’t conclude until after midnight. Organizers had expected as many as three million people would attend at least some of the 10-day celebration (June 23-July 2). Two TV stations broadcast the entire parade live. Local media reported that 1.5 million turned out to watch or participate in Saturday’s parade. Tourists f

END OF AN ERA: Two Seattle LGBTQ landmarks demolished in one week

by MK Scott – SGN Contributing Writer We knew this very day was coming, but to lose not just one, but two buildings, that each meant so much to many in the Seattle LGBTQ Community (during Pride Week, no less): I am talking about the house on 303 17th Ave. E. (home towards the Seattle AIDS Support Group, later on called Dunshee House, and then Seattle Area Support Groups and Community Middle for 26 years) and the previous Brass Door and later Metal Connection and later incarnations (a Gay bar and dance membership with various owners and titles for over 20 years) at 722 E. Pike St . For SASG, who vacated the house and moved in late 2015 to its present location on 15th Ave. E. between E. Denny Way and E. John St ., it was not clear that the 2, 460 SF home that was built in 1906 would actually be torn down. So last week’s demolition surprised even personally. Even when Seattle had its LGBT Community Center from 2002 in order to 2008, SASG House (also called Dunshee House, from 2004

Watch with Pride in London

On Saturday 8th July, tens of thousands of people will join the London LGBT Pride parade. Pride in London, to use its formal name, has strict restrictions on taking part in the parade (as we understand it, they have to book the roads to be closed for a certain amount of time and an extra couple of thousand people rocking […]

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Members of Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS quit Trump ‘does not care,’ they charge

by Mike Andrew – SGN Staff Writer Six of the 18 members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) resigned June 13, saying that Donald Trump ‘simply does not care’ about fighting the disease. In a June 16 op-ed in Newsweek magazine, Scott Schoettes, Counsel and HIV Project Director at Lambda Legal, explained why he and his colleagues quit PACHA. ‘As advocates for people living with HIV, we have dedicated our lives to combating this disease and no longer feel we can do so effectively within the confines of an advisory body to a president who simply does not care,’ Schoettes wrote. ‘The Trump administration has no strategy to address the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic, seeks zero input from experts to formulate HIV policy, and – most concerning – pushes legislation that will harm people living with HIV and halt or reverse important gains made in the fight against this disease… ‘While man

SGN exclusive interview: Mayoral candidate Jenny Durkan

by Mike Andrew – SGN Staff Writer Mayoral candidate Jenny Durkan is running for office for the first time, but she’s no stranger to politics. A lawyer, former US attorney, family friend of the Gregoires, member of two police review boards, Mike Lowry staffer, and daughter of an 18-year veteran of the Washington state legislature, Durkan knows her way around the corridors of power. She announced her candidacy for mayor only three days after incumbent Ed Murray dropped out of the race in the wake of a sex abuse scandal. According to two recent polls, Durkan is likely to be one of the two candidates who will make it to the general election in November. Nevertheless, she has struggled to distinguish herself from her competition. ‘We are all varying shades of blue,’ she told the SGN. Asked explicitly what makes her different from the five or six other candidates who have a chance to make it through to Nov

Your own Bi Week: 19-25 June

It’s a new bisexual week within our calendar of bi events – and there’s lots on around the country. Things get started on Tuesday whenever from 7. 45pm it’s Swansea Bi Group at Mozarts, Walter Road. Which is in Swansea, certainly. Also that night it’s the monthly bi pub meet for Manchester BiPhoria. 8pm at the Waterhouse on Princess Street; they […]

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Ed Murray accuser drops lawsuit Mayor considering write-in campaign

by Mike Andrew – SGN Staff Writer Delvonn Heckard, the man who accused Seattle Mayor Ed Murray of paying him for sex when he was underage, has dropped his lawsuit against Murray. Heckard’s attorney, Lincoln Beauregard, filed a motion to withdraw the complaint on June 13, and it was granted by a King County Superior Court. Beauregard filed the suit on Heckard’s behalf in April. Murray, who always denied Heckard’s allegations, dropped his run for re-election last month. At a June 14 press conference, Murray said he’d been ‘vindicated’ by withdrawal of the lawsuit and did not rule out running for re-election as a write-in candidate. Heckard’s suit was dismissed ‘without prejudice,’ meaning he can still file additional complaints against Murray, and Beauregard said his client would definitely refile his suit after he completes his drug rehab program next year. Beauregard also said his client would stand a better chance afte

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Is ANY sexual desire a “choice”?

Sexual orientation has a strong physiological component. It appears to be influenced by both genetic and hormonal factors.

• The trait is similar to being left or right-handed; the genetic influence on
both traits is estimated at less than 50%; and both seem to be established at an early age or before birth.

• A same-sex orientation is held by approximately 3-5% of the world’s population. There are twice as many homosexual males as females.

• Sexual orientation is a complex trait which appears to have multiple
mechanisms acting upon it. It is unlikely that there is a single cause,
although it is quite clear that the primary roots of the trait lie in biology.

• Gay men and lesbians are more likely than straight men and women to be left-handed. Since hand preference can be observed in the womb, this suggests a prenatal influence.

• Gay men’s object location memory skills exceed that of straight men. Gay men’s skill level in this involuntary indicator of brain organization between the sexes approaches that of straight women.

• Both lesbians and gay men outperform heterosexual men and women in verbal fluency from early childhood.

How can you explain it?

Which sexual orientations are “ok”?

"All of this logic goes for the sexual paraphilias, too, which are primary patterns of arousal that lie outside the norm. The paraphilias, of course, are less tolerated as a whole than simply being gay, straight, or bi, and we argue over which groups get to use the term sexual orientation, but I see no rational reason not to regard the paraphilias as their own distinct sexual orientations."

"“I don’t ‘hate’ gay people,” they say. “I just disagree with them, that’s all.” By “disagreeing,” either you’re willfully ignoring the obvious fact that sexual orientation is not a choice (which indeed makes you a bigot), or you’re simply unable to grasp the obvious fact that sexual orientation is not a choice (which makes you stupid)."

Great comments from Jesse Bering