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WHITE HOUSE SUCCESS & NEXT STEPS: The 2014 Equality Poll. WHO supports Equality?

Hello Equality Seekers,

This update is in a blog format to share the two-day journey from NYC Pride to the White House to Rev. Dr. MLK Jr.’s Memorial where we launched the “Add 4 Words” campaign in community.

Things are going great on so many fronts! There was lots of exciting and useful interaction in D.C. with the White House and President, our Vigil at the MLK Memorial was moving and inspiring; and the movement conversation is at last veering toward demanding Full Civil Rights Equality.

Next our sites are set on conducting The 2014 Equality Poll – to ask every Congressional candidate where they stand on LGBT equality. But more on that soon.

First, I have to thank Richard Noble who invited me as his guest to the White House Pride reception. I had no desire to join the glad-handing until we had a full-equality bill to sign. But I went and networked our campaign, asked tough questions during the 3 hour morning briefing, and ended up unexpectedly speaking directly to President Obama about our bill.

Before that engagement, during his remarks I held up a sign, standing politely to the side of the room: “ADD 4 WORDS”. I could not let the moment go by without protest. Yes, I admire President Obama immensely. But the White House is the seat of our oppression by our government, and it is the job of the presidency to lead us to equality under the law, not just administratively, albeit that admirable. His new angle is to advise us to focus first on inter-sectionality of oppressions as he said at his gay fundraiser in New York, and again at the White House Pride event. It is a good idea to work across oppressions, obviously, for lots of reasons. Yet he fails to even mention that we are left out of the civil rights laws that cover everyone else already. Everyone but us. He could include a call to action to fix that issue – “all working together” – first or sometime soon. But he doesn’t.

Tif White House Add 4 Words Flyer Obama


So when I saw him working the rope line after his remarks, I worked my way up and tried to give the hastily made poster “Add 4 Words” to him, but the secret service grabbed it, so I gently prolonged our handshake, and said “we need you to help us file an equality bill” and he said “file it” and I said “the DNC or the LGBT Caucus is blocking us” and as he maneuvered away he snapped back, “I’m not blocking anyone from filing any bill.” It all happened so fast.

At first I thought this was a fumbled moment on my part, but later I realized he gave me invaluable information. The blockage is not coming from the White House. So it must be coming from the LGBT movement itself as long suspected. I told his senior LGBT policy person this exchange, and he agreed to have a real conversation, without the run-around. We’ll see.

Later, Richard and I spoke with the LGBT Caucus Executive Director, Brad Jacklin, formerly of HRC & NGLTF. For over an hour we explained the inherent value of a full equality bill, while he questioned why they haven’t heard any “grassroots demand” for an equality bill, or why a bill was even necessary for organizing. Ha. I explained that the LGBT Caucus was not elected by the LGBT community, so it needed to listen more and question less. We agreed to plan a Congressional teach-in on “full equality.” More on that later.

Back to the White House, in the morning there was a 3 hour briefing by Administration officials from various agencies from the Department of Justice to the Department of Agriculture. There I asked many questions. I asked about the religious exemptions and the pending EO, which they refused to discuss, so I told them “better no EO, than a regressive one”. I explained how internationally the U.S. has no credibility on LGBT human rights, since it doesn’t protect us from discrimination here domestically. They replied with an unconvincing distinction between life-time incarceration abroad and suicide at home. So I also gave a brief overview of “minority stress” and urged them to do a PSA campaign targeting our community directly about this.

I asked each a question (or two) with humor, after bending the ear of Tobias Barrington Wolff, a close academic advisor to the President on LGBT issues, who happened to be sitting next to me. He said “You’ll be happy with my article in the Nation” which he suggested was against the religious exemptions, and I said “Where is your article on full equality?” and gave him a sparkle of glitter that was lingering from NY Pride the day before.


Here is a picture of us marching down 5th Avenue NYC with our “SEEK FULL EQUALITY” banner, made by the Radical Faeries and my husband Giovanni. In this shot, we’re together with Queer Nation’s banner, made by Gilbert Baker, the creator of the original rainbow flag: “ENDA IS NOT EQUAL!” Before this shot, we had book-ended the HRC contingency, which turned out to be a corporate sponsor doing HRC’s parade walking for them. But I’m sure they got our message.

Pride 2014 Enda is not equal seek full equality

At sunset, after nibbling the White House sweets selection, I was off to the Vigil. As an aside, the WH pastry chef was retiring and gay, I guess, since he was there, and the President was teasing him as a farewell, and the President said, “I think he put crack in those pastries.” I couldn’t believe it. But it was hilarious. And I felt better about taking my sign out, since we were clearly being informal.


The Vigil was very special. The mixture of our circle was lovely, deep and profound. Together we were assembled: amazing activists and allied faith leaders, the first “out” Teachers-of-the Year from Oregon and Wisconsin, three powerful trans voices spanning generations, an activist who had walked across America on foot for equality, and another who in retirement, has made D.C. her home to be a full time activist for our cause. We were all united, and as we sang “We Shall Over Come,” lead by a black lesbian faith leader, Mr. Bayard Rustin and Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt were summoned with all our lost children to the dance ahead for full equality.

For an end to homophobia.

For freedom for transgender people everywhere.

The call went out “Add 4 Words”. “Add 4 Words.”

MLK Group Picture

Thank you to all involved.

Stay tuned for next steps: The 2014 Equality Poll.

We need a committee for this, and volunteers are welcome from every state.

Let’s figure out where they stand, and the road ahead will be clear(er).

Equality Now!

Todd “Tif” Fernandez, LLM
Campaign Manager,
The Equality Pledge Network
New York, New York

p.s. Here is a great article by Chuck Colbert, a long-time activist in Boston, on our launch and the MLK Vigil. And a pic of us with the 44th President.
Tif President Obama

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New Nationwide Campaign Demands LGBT Rights Be Added to 1964 Civil Rights Act. Vigil June 30th @ MLK Memorial Will Launch Campaign.

Add 4 Words

The Equality Pledge Network – a new campaign for full LGBT equality backed by over 245 organizations – will officially launch with an LGBT Civil Rights Vigil at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in D.C. beginning at 8:30 p.m., Monday, June 30th. The event theme is “Add 4 Words” reflecting a call for four words to be added to the 1964 Civil Rights Act: “sexual orientation-gender identity” (SO-GI). The event also celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Act, on July 2nd, marking 50 years and counting until the day LGBT Americans are equally protected from the scourge of discrimination.

A new organization, LGBTequalityNOW.org, has been created to facilitate the Network, led by a wealth of veteran experience and diversity, including Erica Keppler, Chair of the Arizona Stonewall Democrats and co-founder of the Arizona TransAlliance; Cathy Marino-Thomas, former chair of Marriage Equality USA; Veronica Eady, a straight-ally and African-American civil rights attorney currently at the Conservation Law Foundation; Josef Pons de Jesus previously with ACT-UP NY, Human Rights Campaign, and the National Latino Lesbian & Gay Organization; Pablo Colon, former community outreach and advocacy director at the Gay Men’s Health Crisis NY; Attorney Yetta Kurland, former candidate for City Council in NY and a human rights advocate; Michael Miller, formerly with the AIDS Action Committee of Boston and Harvard AIDS Institute; and Executive Director and Board Chairperson, J. Todd Fernandez, Esquire, former Ombudsman to the Governor and General Council and Legislative Director for Economic Affairs of Massachusetts.

Building a powerful team, the new network is uniting the grassroots and state groups like never before, breaking the corporate insider mold with direct empowerment of local experts. Over 40 activists in 22 states are serving as volunteer state leads, including Attorney Peter Sergienko working with his gay son Eugene in Oregon; Richard Noble, from the Walk Across America; Attorney Stephen Zollman of the National Equality March; Jeff White-Perkins from Mississippi Gulf Coast Rainbow Center; straight-ally Jean Kryean of Pennsylvania, and Mika Covington and Ken Ritter, who have joined forces in Iowa and Nebraska (quotes below).

The unifying statement of principle for the over 245 groups in 44 states is The Pledge for Full LGBT Equality, which calls on the LGBT Caucus to file a one-bill strategy to add SO-GI to all the civil rights laws at once. The breadth of this community mandate spans sixteen statewide equality organizations from Equality Hawaii to Equality Illinois to Equality South Carolina; transgender groups such as Gender Rights Maryland and the Tennessee Trans Political Alliance; POC groups including LGBT Caribbean and the NYC Black Justice Alliance; PFLAG chapters from Pasadena to Ann Arbor; the ACLU of Mississippi, The Unitarian Universalists Association; Metropolitan Community Churches; The United Church of Christ; LGBT Democrats of Virginia, Palm Springs and Florida, 23 LGBT Community Centers from New York to San Francisco; LGBT Pride groups from New Orleans to LosAngeles to the Outer Banks; and InterPride, and over 11 City Council Proclamations from West Hollywood to New Orleans and Tallahassee.

The new strategy is in sharp contrast to the Human Rights Campaign’s push for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (bill), now embroiled in community dissent because of the religious-exemptions that would leave our most vulnerable children behind. Groups including the ACLU, Lambda Legal, Equality California, Queer Nation NY, Equality Illinois, and others, strongly oppose the Senate version of ENDA, which would ensconce in federal law anti-LGBT discrimination in taxpayer-funded programs, as a concession for Republican votes, that entirely misses the point of organizing for social change.

“Seeking full equality is not just a legislative agenda, but is the antidote to the vast harm LGBT Americans endure under discrimination, which causes children to commit suicide, and keeps 53% of LGBT workers in the closet, living in daily fear,” said Todd Fernandez, campaign manager for The Equality Pledge Network. “The ENDA compromises are a sign of our movement’s strategic weaknesses, and they should not be accepted until we have first united in full force nationwide. We won this debate in Arizona with Republican Senators’ support, and it’s the debate we need to have as a nation to heal homophobia and transphobia in our culture.”

The Network’s information-filled website advances two main arguments: 1. That international law requires Congress to outlaw SO-GI discrimination, and 2. That the vast harm caused by discrimination, known as “minority stress,” makes this a public health emergency. As support, the site includes the United Nation’s Free & Equal campaign, the historic speech by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton proclaiming “gay rights are human rights,” and congressional expert testimony of Dr. Illan Meyers of the Williams Institute, backed by official reports of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, the American Psychological Association, and others.

The 2014 Campaign goals include 1. Increasing Pledge support from 245 to 500 organizations, 2. Establishing state leads in all 50 states, 3. Conducting a 2014 Equality Poll to map support in Congress, and 4. Mounting a PSA campaign about the “minority stress” impact including suicide and mental health disparities, such as depression, anxiety, and hypervigiliance. LGBT Americans are suffering from these, unaware that societal discrimination is the cause, and this simple awareness could save lives and prevent suffering, while changing hearts and minds.

The vigil will feature pictures of LGBT Americans lost to suicide and murder, also honored on the website, to prevail upon the greater conscious of our nation to outlaw this societal abuse. Activists and religious leaders will carry rainbow flags and herald the contributions of LGBT civil rights heroes Eleanor Roosevelt, who led the way on the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, and Bayard Rustin, the gay human rights leader who was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work leading to the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which his community yearns to join.

The Equality Pledge Network
Website: www.LGBTequalityNOW.org
Twitter: @EqualityPledge
Facebook: http://bit.ly/Add4WordsDCjune30


Veronica Eady, Board Member, LGBTequalityNOW.org, Civil Rights Attorney: “As an African American woman, I understand why only fully inclusive nondiscrimination laws meet the standard for basic human dignity in our nation. The inclusion of LGBT American in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is right and necessary.”

Jeff White-Perkins, President Mississippi Gulf Coast Rainbow Center:
“We in Mississippi support this pledge because throughout the history of our state, we have learned the lesson of how inequality can cause the destruction of the human spirit and how that can last for hundreds of years within the hearts and minds of our citizens. We hope to end that here and now.”

Cathy Marino-Thomas, Board, LGBTequalityNOW.org, former Board Chair, Marriage Equality USA: “Marriage equality, although important for our families, is not full federal equality. The time to be fully equal is now!”

Ken Ritter, Nebraskans for Equality: “Nebraskans for Equality is proud and excited to be part of a new dialogue for LGBT equality. It is time LGBT people learn about other areas of their rights as Americans that deserve full equal attention under the law.”

Marcinho Savant, Entertainment Chair, Equality Pledge Network: “The Pledge is a no-brainer. There is no gray area, in equality. Either we are EQUAL, or we’re not. The constitution has already answered in the letter and the spirit of the document. I choose equality. Equality now.”

Attorney Stephen Zollman, formerly of the National Equality March. “As Northern California’s State Lead for the Equality Pledge Network, and Founder of Guerneville’s Next Steps Towards Full Legal Equality, I would like to say that every one needs to do this for your youth! None of our youth should ever feel lesser than. Full Federal Equality Now!!”

Erica Keppler, Chair, Arizona Stonewall Democrats, Board Member, LGBTequalityNOW.org: “For too long we have settled for pursuing piecemeal solutions to systemic cultural bigotry. It is time to deal with the entire problem head on. It is time for full federal equality.”

Joyce Arnold: “With the state of inequality the reality for millions of us, residing in every state (including here in Texas), full equality at the federal level is crucial to advocacy efforts.”

Keri Kidder, Florida State Pledge Lead: “Jacksonville, Florida is still behind in Equality and we will continue to fight until everyone is equal.”

Mika Covington, Iowa State Pledge Lead: “”As an new Iowan, I have come to experience equal rights here in Iowa. They are awesome. However, they are constantly under attack and we have to constantly fight to keep them. This is why it is more important than ever to get full federal human rights for everyone no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity. The fight forward is not over until all humans have full and equal human right.”

Pablo Colon, LGBT Activist, Board Member, LGBTequalityNOW.org: “We LGBT people, your sons, daughters, brothers and sisters demand to be equal under the law as we are under God! Join the Equality Pledge Network and be on the right side of history.”

Jean Kryven, Pennsylvania State Lead: “Friends and family suffering discrimination and violence inspired me to volunteer with Equality Pledge Network. As a middle-aged straight ally, I was alive when Americans were killed while working for Civil Rights. From child labor laws at the turn of the century to the Equal Pay Act, mobilization and legislation are what expand good health, joy, and prosperity for all Americans.”


TAKE ACTION for equality now

EMAIL the Religious Groups Opposing UAFA & LGBT Equality

EMAIL: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

OR CALL: NAE: 202-789-1011
SBC: 202-547-8105
USCCB: 212-371-1000
NHCLC: 916-919-7476

Re: Stop Hurting Gay People

Dear Religious Leaders:

Rev. Leith Anderson, National Association of Evangelicals
Mr. Barrett Duke, Southern Baptist Convention
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Rev. Samuel Rodriquez, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference

I am writing to ask that your organizations please cease and desist from opposing legislation to end discrimination against gay families in immigration reform and generally stop all efforts against LGBT equality and justice.

As you currently oppose gay couples in immigration reform, our bi-national gay families suffer immeasurable harm and anxiety under existing law, facing forced separation and life uncertainty, despite being legally married and in committed relationships. This harm is man made and can be ended by you.

Moreover, as evidenced by the recent murder of Mark Carson in NYC and anti-gay attacks around the world, cultural and religious advocacy against the LGBT community causes severe psychological and physical suffering for our people. And this must stop.

Neighbors murder and rape us because you tell them to disrespect us. And our children commit suicide because they are taught to hate themselves and are not safe at home or school. Where do the children go to hide from this? Where do our souls go to be safe?

Your position is literally killing us. And your political advocacy blocking our efforts to protect ourselves means that this harm continues unchecked. Division and judgment, not love and compassion, prevail in this context.

With love guiding us all forward, the majority of people of many faiths now support LGBT couples, and all faithful, including your own, increasingly support our equality and dignity as equal human beings and co-habitants of earth. All souls are equal, are they not?

In this spirit, we beseech you to seek the greater goodness in your heart and to end the active persecution and political lobbying against LGBT happiness and safety.

The religious freedom of other faiths dedicated to performing our unions depend upon your standing down. The end of our vast suffering depends on your standing down. And the love of humankind for one another depends on your standing down.

We look forward to a public announcement that your organizations will no longer oppose our political quest for protection from discrimination and equality, so we can all live peacefully and with love, across all faiths and all peoples, in all of our glorious diversity.

Respectfully yours,


p.s. Working together, you all could end LGBT persecution around the globe if you chose to do so.

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A New Initiative: Loving Everywhere

For the first time in a decade, on March 26th and 27th, the Supreme Court will hear two cases about LGBT equality. Their rulings on these two cases will likely direct same gender marriage laws for the next decade(s).

The cases are ably handled by two civil rights organizations: The ACLU LGBT project and the American Foundation for Equal Rights.

But you can do your part to ensure a positive ruling. So, we have started the Loving Everywhere project. We are asking couples to send a picture of themselves with a thoughtful letter to each Supreme Court justice explaining the importance of having their marriage recognized not only by the federal government, but also by all 50 states and territories. (This can be achieved by requiring that all states either allow same gender marriages or recognize out of state marriages.)

We all understand the importance of our marriages being valid everywhere. We know of the problems that occur when you travel or relocate and suddenly you are not considered married.

Loving Everywhere is a connection to the 1967 Loving v. Virginia case, in which the Supreme Court ruled that interracial marriages should be valid everywhere. At that time the majority of Americans opposed interracial marriage (while today most Americans support same gender marriages). At that time, contrary to today, interracial couples legally married could be imprisoned just by moving to a state that did not allow such marriages. When President Obama was born in Hawaii to an interracial couple, their marriage was illegal in many states.

The purpose of Loving Everywhere is to inform justices of the need for our marriages to be recognized everywhere, not just by the federal government or a few states.

The personal touch of a picture and a thoughtful letter has a unique impact. Go to LovingEverywhere.com to get the names and address and start writing! Remember, the cases will be heard at the end of March.

Please tell your friends and family to do the same!

TAKE ACTION for equality now

GAY THE VOTE: House & Senate Races That Need LGBT Support

Hey everyone.
Here is a list of various House, and some Senate races, that are in play. Some tossup, some leaning D or R.
Please check whether your state is listed, and then please help spread the word and encourage involvement in these races.
The prospects of a major LGBT civil rights bill next Congress varies widely on whether Democrats are in charge.
So this is where intention and effort is needed whether you FB it, donate it, or volunteer in person to help Get Out The Vote.
The list of 79 races in 34 states, includes 23 women, and 7 gay/lesbian Democrats, and 1 gay Republican.
Gay candidates are in Arizona, California, Idaho, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, and two in Wisconsin.
Toss up Presidential states are indicated where Obama support is needed in particular.
There is geographical info provided for each district listed, but check the Election Guide with your address/zip to find your own district.
Please post on your FB pages links to the candidates in your states that need support.
With LGBT 6% or more of the population, we could be the margin of victory, if we register and vote.
Voting is one of the strongest non-violent direct actions we have available.
So Vote early and help others vote!. And who knows, we could retake the House! Hold the Senate!!! And the Presidency!
Please send any corrections and please share this with local LGBT and other relevant groups.
We can Win 2012! Equality Next!

AZ-1: Ann Kirkpatrick (D) vs. Jonathan Paton (R). (open seat; rural areas of northern and eastern Arizona).
AZ-2: Ron Barber (D) vs. Martha McSally (R) (open seat, formerly Gifford; northwestern corner; Phoenix).
AZ-9: Kyrsten KINEMA (D, Gay) vs. Vernon Parker (R). (new: near Tuson)
AZ Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/az

CA-3: John Garamendi (D) vs. Kim Vann (R) (most of Sacramento County, part Solano County, Alpine, Amador and Calaveras counties)
CA-7: Ami Bera (D) vs. Dan Lungren (R) (Contra Costa County; Solano County; Richmond, Pittsburg, Vallejo, Vacaville, Concord)
CA-9: Jerry McNerney (D) vs. Ricky Gill (R) (Stockton and surrounding areas)
CA-10: Jose Hernandez (D) vs. Jeff Denham (R) (the East San Francisco Bay Area region)
CA-21: John Hernandez (D) vs. David Valadao (new: Tulare County eastern half of Fresno County)
CA-24: Lois Capps (D) vs. Abel Mondonado (R) (Ventura and inland Santa Barbara counties)
CA-26: Julia Brownley (D) vs. Tony Strickland (R) (open seat; foothills San Gabriel Valley from La Cañada Flintridge to Rancho Cucamonga)
CA-41: Mark TAKANO (D, Gay) vs. John Tavaglione (R) (Riverside County, Riverside, Jurupa valley, Moreno Valley, Perris)
CA-52: Scott Peters (D) vs. Brian Bilbray (R) (San Diego County, suburbs, Lakeside, Poway, Ramona, La Mesa, and Spring Valley)
CA Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/ca

COLORADO (Toss Up Presidential)
CO-3: Sal Pace II (D) vs. Scott Tipton (R) (western and south central Colorado, rural Western Slope, cities Grand Junction and Durango; southern portions of eastern plains, Pueblo).
CO-6: Joe Miklosi (D) vs. Mike Coffman (R) (central, southern part of Denver-Aurora Metropolitan Area, suburbs: Littleton, Centennial, Aurora).
CO Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/co

CT-5: Elizabeth Esty (D) vs. Andrew Roraback (R) (from Meriden and New Britain in central Connecticut, to Waterbury, the Litchfield Hills, and the Farmington River Valley).
CT-SENATE: Christopher Murphy (D) vs. Linda McMahon (R).
CT Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/ct

FLORIDA (Toss Up Presidential)
FL-13: Jessica Ehrlich (D) vs. C.W. Bill Young (R) (Sarasota, DeSoto, and Hardee counties; most Manatee County, some Charlotte county)
FL-16: Keith Fitzgerald (D) vs. Vern Buchanan (R) (Charlotte, Glades, Hendry, Highlands, Okeechobee, St. Lucie, Martin, Palm Beach counties; Port Charlotte, Port St. Lucie, and Palm Beach)
FL-18: Patrick Murphy (D) vs. Allen West (R) (most of Miami, South Beach, Coral Gables and Coral Terrace)
FL-22: Lois Frankel (D) vs. Adam Hasner (R) (open; coastline northern Broward County, Palm Beach County, West Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Boca Raton, Deerfield Beach, Coconut Creek, Fort Lauderdale, Oakland Park, Cooper City).
FL-26: Joe Garcia (D) vs. David Rivera (R) (all of Monroe County, portion of Miami-Dade County).
FL-SENATE: Bill Nelson (D) vs. Connie Mack (R).
FL Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/fl

GA-12: John Barrow (D) vs. Lee Anderson (R) (eastern and southeastern parts, Augusta, Dublin, Douglas, and Statesboro)
GA Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/ga

HI-SENATE: Mazie Hirono (D) vs. Linda Lingle (R)
HI Candidate Details: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/hi

ID-2: Nicole LeFAVOURE (D, Gay) vs. Mike Simpson (R) (longshot; Eastern Idaho and the Magic Valley region)

IL-8: Tammy Duckworth (D) vs. Joe Walsh (R) (northern suburbs of Chicago, Lake, McHenry and Cook counties; northwestern suburbs, such as Hoffman Estates, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Gurnee, Palatine, Mundelein, Zion, Barrington, Cook County portion of Elgin, McHenry, and Woodstock)
IL-10: Brad Schneider (D) vs. Robert Dold (R) (northern suburbs of Chicago)
IL-11: Bill Foster (D) vs. Judy Biggert (R) (Joliet, Bloomington, Normal, Kankakee, LaSalle, Ottawa and Streator, Will, Kankakee, Grundy, LaSalle, Bureau, Woodford and McLean counties)
IL-12: William Enyart (D) vs. Jason Plummer (R) (open; Madison county, Alexander, Franklin, Jackson, Jefferson, Monroe, Perry, Pulaski, Randolph, St. Clair, Union and Williamson counties, Belleville, Cahokia, Carbondale, Collinsville, Granite City,Herrin, Marion, Mt. Vernon, O’Fallon, Shiloh and Swansea)
IL-17: Cheri Bustos (D) vs. Bobby Schilling (R) (much of west central Illinois)
IL Candidates: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/il

IN-2: Brendan Mullen (D) vs. Jackie Walorski (R) (in South Bend, north-central, Indiana portion of the Michiana region, Elkhart)
IN-8: Dave Crooks (D) vs. Larry Bucshon (R) ( in Southwest and west central, Evansville, Terre Haute, Vincennes and Washington)
IN-SENATE: Joe Donnelly (D) vs. Richard Murdock (R-Tea Party)
IN Candidates: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/in

IOWA (Toss up Presidential)
IA-2: Dave Loebsack (D) vs. John Archer (R) (southeastern part, Iowa City and Cedar Rapids)
IA-3: Leonard Boswell (D) vs. Tom Latham (R) (Des Moines to Cedar Falls-Waterloo Metropolitan Area, outskirts Cedar Rapids, to Lucas and Monroe counties).
IA-4: Christie Vilsack (D) vs. Steve King (R) (north-central, Ames and Fort Dodge)
Candidate Info: http://www.congress.org/election/guide/ia

KY-6: Ben Chandler (D) vs. Garland Barr IV (R) (Central Kentucky, Lexington, Richmond, and Frankfort, the state capital)

MD-6: John Delaney (D) vs. Roscoe Bartlett (R) (northwest, Garrett, Allegany, Washington, Frederick and Carroll Counties, Montgomery, Baltimore, and Harford Counties)

MA-6: John Tierney (D) vs. Richard TISEI (R, Gay) (most of Essex County, North Shore and Cape Ann)
MA-SENATE: Elizabeth Warren (D) vs. Scott Brown (Polling 48-48)

MI-1: Gary McDowell (D) vs. Dan Benishek (R) (entire Upper Peninsula of Michigan and part of the Lower Peninsula)
MI-3: Steve Pestka (D) vs. Justin Amash (R-TeaParty) (counties of Barry, Ionia, Kent)
MI-11: Syed Taj (D) vs. Kerry Bentivolio (R-TeaParty) (northwest of Detroit, northwestern Wayne and southwestern Oakland counties)

MN-8: Richard Nolan (Democratic Farmer Labor) vs. Chip Cravaack (R) (Duluth, Mesabi and Vermilion iron ranges)

MO-SENATE: Claire McCaskill (D) vs. Akin (R) (Polling: D-39; R-37)

MT-SENATE: Jon Tester (D) vs. Denny Rehberg (R)

NEVADA (Toss up Presidential)
NV-3: John Oceguera (D) vs. Joe Heck (R) (suburbs of Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas and Summerlin, Clark County)
NV-SENATE: Shelley Berkley (D) vs. Dean Heller (R)

NEW HAMPSHIRE (Toss up Presidential)
NH-1: Carol Shea Porter (D) vs. Frank Guinta (R) (Greater Manchester, the Seacoast and the Lakes Region)
NH-2: Ann Custer (D) vs. Charles Bass (R) (western and northern parts, Nashua, Concord)

NJ-3: Shelley Adler (D) vs. Jon Runyan (R) (Burlington County, Ocean County, Camden County (Cherry Hill Township))

NM-SENATE: Martin Heinrich (D) vs. Heather Wilson (R)

NY-1: Timothy Bishop (D) vs. Randy Altschuler (R) (Central and Eastern Suffolk County, Smithtown, Brookhaven, Riverhead, Southold,Southampton, East Hampton, and Shelter Island)
NY-11: Mark Murphy (D) vs. Michael Grimm (R) (Brooklyn, neighborhoods Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Kensington, Park Slope, Prospect Heights, and Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Prospect Park)
NY-18: Sean MALONEY (D, GAY) vs. Nan Hayworth (R, freshman) (Westchester County, Rockland County, Larchmont, Mamaroneck, New Rochelle, Ossining, the Town of Pelham,Scarsdale, Tarrytown, White Plains, New City and Yonkers)
NY-19: Julian Schreibman (D) vs. Chris Gibson (R, freshman) (north of NYC, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Westchester Counties, Putnam County)
NY-21: Bill Owens (D) vs. Matt Doheny (R) (Albany, Fulton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, and Schoharie counties; Schenectady, Troy, Amsterdam, Cohoes, Watervliet, Gloversville and Johnstown)
NY-24: Dan Maffei (D) vs. Ann Marie Buerkle (R) (Broome, Cayuga, Chenango, Cortland, Herkimer, Oneida, Ontario, Otsego, Seneca,Tioga and Tompkins counties)
NY-27: Kathy Hochul (D) vs. Chris Collins (R) (Chautauqua County, Erie County, Buffalo, Jamestown)

NORTH CAROLINA (Toss Up Presidential)
NC-7: Mike McIntyre (D) vs. David Rouzer (R) (Bladen, Brunswick, Columbus, Cumberland,Duplin, New Hanover, Pender, Robeson, and Sampson counties)
NC-8: Larry Kissell (D) vs. Richard Hudson (R) (from Charlotte to Fayetteville, Concord, Albemarle, Monroe, Wadesboro, Troy, Rockingham, Laurinburg, and Raeford, Anson, Hoke, Montgomery, Richmond, Scotland, and Stanly counties, Cabarrus, Cumberland, Mecklenburg, and Union counties).

ND-SENATE: Heidi Heitkamp (D) vs. Rick Berg (R)

OHIO (Toss up Presidential)
OH-6: Charlie Wilson (D) vs. Bill Johnson (R) (southeast, Lucasville, Athens, several Ohio River industrial towns)
OH-16: Betty Sutton (D) vs. James Renacci (R) (Stark County, Canton area, Wayne County, Medina and Ashland counties)
OH-SENATE: Sherrod Brown (D) vs. John Mandel (R)

OK-2: Rob Wallace (D) vs. Markwayne Mullen (R) (some of Rogers County; Adair, Nowata, Craig, Ottawa, Mayes, Delaware, Cherokee, Okmulgee, Muskogee, Sequoyah, Okfuskee, McIntosh, Haskell,LeFlore, Hughes, Pittsburg, Latimer, Coal, Atoka, Pushmataha, McCurtain, Choctaw, Bryan, and Johnston)

PA-8: Kathy Boockvar (D) vs. Michel Fitzpatrick (R) (Bucks County, portion Montgomery County and Northeast Philadelphia)
PA-12: Mark Critz (D) vs. Keith Rothfus (R) (Greene County, Allegheny, Armstrong, Cambria, Fayette,Indiana, Somerset, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties)

RI-1: David CICILLINE (D, Gay) vs. Brendan Doherty (R) (Providence Count, Burrillvile, Central Falls, Cumberland, East Providence, Lincoln, North Providence, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, Providence, Smithfield, Woonsocket; Bristol Count, Newport County)

TX-14: Nick Lampsen (D) vs. Randy Weber (R) (south/southwest Greater Houston region, Galveston)
TX-23: Pete Gallego (D) vs. Francisco Canseco (R) (across southwestern Texas)

UT-4: Jim Matheson (D) vs. Mia Love (R) (parts of Utah County and Salt Lake County)

VIRGINIA (Toss up Presidential)
VA-2: Paul Hirschbiel (D) vs. Scott Riggell (R) (Accomack and Northampton Counties, Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Hampton)
VA-SENATE: Tim Kaine (D) vs. George Allen (R) (statistical match 44-44)

WA-1: Susan Delbene (D) vs. John Koster (R) (north and east of Seattle, Shoreline, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Mountlake Terrace, Bothell, Kirkland, Redmond, Bainbridge Island, Kitsap Peninsula).

WISCONSIN (Toss up Presidential)
WI-2: Mark POCAN (D, Gay) vs. Chad Lee (R) (southern; Dane County, Green County; Columbia County, portions Jefferson County, Sauk County, Rock County, Walworth County)
WI-7: Pat Kreitlow (D) vs. Sean Duffy (R) (counties: Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Chippewa, Clark (partial), Douglas, Iron, Langlade (partial), Lincoln, Marathon, Oneida (partial), Polk,Portage, Price, Rusk, Sawyer, Taylor, Washburn and Wood)
WI-8: Jamie Wall (D) vs. Reid Ribble (R) (northeast, Green Bay and Appleton)
WI-SENATE: Tammy BALDWIN (D, Gay) vs. Tommy Thompson (R)

House: http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/race-ratings/214115-house-ratings-gop-favored-to-keep-majority
House: http://atr.rollcall.com/race-ratings-changes-indiana-senate-moves-to-tossup-mix-of-house-moves/
Senate: http://www.rollcall.com/politics/2012_race_rating_map.html?pos=opol
Senate: http://www.dscc.org/races
Gay Candidates: http://www.buzzfeed.com/chrisgeidner/record-number-of-out-gay-candidates-run-for-congre
Power of the LGBT Vote! http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/2012/07/how-important-is-the-gay-and-lesbian-vote.html

Ohio, TAKE ACTION for equality now

OHIO Activists Counter Protest Family Research Council Bus Tour at Every Stop! GO OHIO.

Here’s a list of counter-protests by GetEqual Ohio & Freedom to Marry-Ohio to the Family Research Council’s “Values Bus Tour”.   Go grassroots!!!

COLUMBUS: Tuesday, April 10 — 12:00pm until 1:00pm
Ohio Statehouse, 1 Capitol Square, Columbus, OH 43215
Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/275962982484168?

FAIRFIELD: Wednesday, April 11 — 3:00pm until 5:30pm
6320 South Gilmore Road, Fairfield, OH 45014
Event page:

FINDLAY: Friday, April 13 — 5:30pm until 6:30pm
1031 Interstate Court, Findlay, OH 45840
Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/274631955948213/

TOLEDO: Saturday, April 14 — 9:00am until 11:00am
105 Front Street, Perrysburg, OH 43551
Event page:

WESTLAKE: Sunday, April 15 — 8:30am until 1:30pm
Church on the Rise, 3550 Crocker Road, Westlake, OH 44145
Event page:

CUYAHOGA FALLS: Sunday, April 15 — 3:00pm until 6:00PM
River Square (Rockin’ on the River), Cuyahoga Falls, OH
Event page:

Thank you to GetEqual OH and the Freedom to Marry Ohio Coalition and other groups and individuals WILLING TO TAKE A STAND !!!


FOR BACKGROUND INFORMATION on the Family Research Council which is A DESIGNATED HATE GROUP by the Southern Poverty Law Center, see: http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-files/family-research-council

New York, TAKE ACTION for equality now

TAKE ACTION: Protest NYPD and Homophobic Discrimination This Saturday at the NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade

(RePosted for: Tommy News Thomas and Irish Queers)

“Traditional Family Values”? NO!
This parade is Homophobic Discrimination!

New York City residents should call 311 and register a complaint.

Sat. March 17 @ 11am to end of Parade, about 4 PM
Fifth Ave. between West 56th and 57th St, New York City

Protest NYPD, Mayor Bloomberg, City and Church sanctioned homophobia
This Saturday!

Take Action: NYC Saint Patricks Day Parade sends Message of Hatred and

Recently, Irish President Mary McAleese turned down an invitation to
be the Grand Marshal of the NYC St. Patrick’s Day parade. Irish
Central, the Irish Voice’s website, says it was because of the
parade’s explicit anti-gay stance. The parade now represents the same
intolerance and bigotry that the Irish immigrants have fought for over
two centuries.

A 1995 conservative U.S. Supreme Court decision allowed the private
sponsor of the Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade to exclude a group of
gays and lesbians.
The 9-0 SCOTUS decision said that parades are a “form of expression”
protected by the First Amendment and that organizers could not be
compelled to include groups whose messages they did not favor. A
second, inclusive parade will take place in Boston, following
a mile behind the first parade.

In New York, gays have again been banned from marching in the parade
on the 17th.
For over 20 years the Ancient Order of Hibernians, and NYC SAINT
PATRICK’S DAY PARADE, Inc. which organizes the
parade, have barred LGBT and Irish gay groups from marching. They
claim the parade is a private, religious procession “Traditional
Family Values”? in
order to to justify keeping LGBT groups out.
New York Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who has compared
homosexuality to alcoholism, has expressed his disapproval of marriage
equality and “homosexuals”. He has pledged to fight Marriage Equality
in New York and in places out of his jurasdiction.

In the parade, public employees such as on duty uniformed police and
firefighters, public school employees and students, and many
secular groups participate in the parade. Public funds are used for
setup, cleanup, security, etc. A private parade, can’t take public
money or allow public employees to participate.

Therefore, we must protest not only the discriminatory exclusion of
LGBT groups from the parade, but also the use of public funds and
public employees. Any event that discriminates against people because of who
they are should not be publicly supported.

The inclusive St. Patrick’s Parade in Queens, held before
St. Patrick’s Day is the only one in the city that allows gay groups
to march openly. The other parades should be boycotted and protested.
Staten Island Pride was banned from the Staten Island St. Pat’s parade
again this year, and gay groups such as Irish Queers are again banned
from marching the big parade on Fifth Avenue this week.

We must protest as long as these homophobic and discriminatory
policies continue. Openly lesbian New York City Speaker Christine
Quinn said: “‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ has been repealed. The military is
no longer
discriminating against LGBT people, but yet parades in New York City
are. It baffles the mind.”

We insist the NYPD, NYFD, public schools, public agencies and
accomodation, sanitation, The Mayor and all New Yorkers immediately stop
participation in the NYC St. Patrick’s Parade and any other such
explicitly anti-gay event. We protest.

From Irish Queers http://irishqueers.blogspot.com/

On Saturday, March 17, the NYPD takes off the mask.
Separate church and state… Separate bigots and public servants!
Sat. March 17 @ 11am to end of Parade, about 4 PM

Fifth Ave. between West 56th and 57th St @ The St. Patrick’s Day parade

This Saturday, tens of thousands of cops will march in an explicitly
anti-gay parade of hate – Mayor Bloomberg, too. The NYC St. Patrick’s
Day parade, once a celebration of Irish New York, is now a “solemn
procession” of the religious right. It was redesigned so that anti-gay
bigots could parade using the church’s special right to discriminate.
The parade officially sends an “anti-gay message” – and the NYPD is
its biggest participant.

How much does the NYPD support religious anti-gay bigots? The NYPD
actively fought to keep Irish queers out of the parade, fought queers’
right to protest the parade, and now sends thousands of officers to
march in NYPD contingents. Most recently, when a dozen queer rights
and immigrant/cultural groups joined forces to tell NYPD Commissioner
Kelly that police endorsement exacerbates anti-queer violence, and to
demand that the NYPD pull out of the parade, Commissioner Kelly didn’t
even bother to respond.

Separate church and state… Separate bigots and public servants!
Sat. March 17 @ 11am
Fifth Ave. between West 56th and 57th St



Write, Email, and Call The Parade Organizers Here:


St Patrick’s Day Parade & Celebration Committee

P.O. Box 295 Woodlawn Station,

Bronx, NY 10470

Phone Number: 718-231-4400 718-231-4400

Fax: 718-231-4401

Web Site: NYCStPatricksParade.Org

Web Site Information: [email protected]

General Info:[email protected]

Chairman: Chairman-NYC-St-Patrick-Day-Parade.Org

Scholarship: [email protected]
Chairman of Bands: [email protected]

FAQ or Information requests
please contact
Hilary Beirne
[email protected]

New York City residents should call 311 and register a complaint.

Contact New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg here:


Phone: (212) 639-9675
Fax: (212) 788-2460

City of New York City
1 Centre Street
New York City, NY 10007-1200

Contact New York Governor Andrew Cuomo here:


Albany Office:

State Capitol
Albany, New York 12224
Phone: (518) 486-4623
Fax: (518) 486-4170

Contact NBC and other Media here:



Website: www.msnbc.com/news
Phone: (212) 664-4444
Fax: (201) 583-5453
Address: 30 Rockefeller Plaza New York, NY 10112

Contact the Ancient Order of Hibernians Here:

Greater Gospel Temple Aoh
2408 E 83rd St
Cleveland, OH 44104
(216) 231-6068


New York City residents should call 311 and register a complaint.

Contact and Boycott the Parade Sponsors:

Quinnipiac University

275 Mount Carmel Ave.
Hamden, CT 06518-1908
Telephone 203-582-8200 203-582-8200
Admissions and Financial Aid: 800-462-1944 800-462-1944

Manhattan College


Irish Connections Visa

Empire City Yonkers Raceway




Group Photos, Inc.

Ireland Calls Radio Show

Pride of Irish Heritage

The Irish Examiner

Tourism Ireland

Turtle Wax


Sponsor links here:


TAKE ACTION for equality now



Please email the Pope via Cardinal Dolan, his chief envoy:

[email protected]

and/or: St. Patrick’s Cathedral: [email protected]

With the words: GLITTER, glitter, GLITTER, glitter, GLITTER

Or Call: St. Patrick’s Cathedral: 212.753.2261

And say: Glitter, Glitter, Glitter, Glitter, Glitter.


The Catholic Church is on full attack with its ANTI-GAY CRUSADE in America. And make no mistake: this is politics.

The Activist Priest leading the political attack against gay Americans is Timothy Dolan,220px-Archbishop_Timothy_Dolan_20090519head of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York, and the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, which marshals the Church’s political activities.

Last Saturday, the Pope rewarded Activist Priest Dolan with a promotion to Cardinal for his full-fledged anti-marriage equality and pro-DOMA onslaught – which recently went so far as to threaten President Obama with a holy war if he did not submit to the Pope’s will (see clips below).

This Saturday, at 4 p.m., Timothy Dolan will host a mass in his own honor to herald his ascendency – on our backs – to higher office.

Please join in the festivities, by sending an email or calling with the message:


By lobbying government to deny us our civil rights, the Church is breaching the fundamental social compact in America – by which we agree to create a safe haven for each of us – and all of us. Their religious freedom is based on this, and so are our civil rights.

So this a GLITTER warning to LET GAYS BE.

More info on the first 7 Crusades:

Join action on FB here.


Timeline on Dolan’s Anti-Gay Crusade and Corresponding Promotions:

FEB 23, 2009: DOLAN APPOINTED ARCHBISHOP OF NY – St. Patrick’s Cathedral.





AUG 2011: DOLAN ON 60 MINUTES (i.e. anti-equality media campaign).


SEPT 22, 2011: DOLAN WARNS PRESIDENT OBAMA of “a national conflict between church and state of enormous proportions” if he supports DOMA repeal.







JAN 6, 2012: DOLAN NAMED CARDINAL BY POPE (Ceremony Feb 18, Rome).

NYC Ceremony at St. Patrick’s Cathedral: SATURDAY FEB. 25th. 4 p.m. (tickets only). SEND GLITTER

TAKE ACTION for equality now

Protest the Elevation to Cardinal of New York Arch-Homophobe Timothy Dolan This Weekend

(Posted for: Tommy Thomas of “Tommy News”)

-By Tommy News

Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan, who has led the Roman Catholic
Archdiocese of New York for nearly three years, will be named a
cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI, at the Vatican on Saturday morning.

Sunday masses will then celebrate this elevation of church sanctioned hatred and homophobia against gays, womens rights, and against full civil rights equality including same-sex civil marriage. Dolan has even gone so far as to petition the President of The United States to take anti-gay action. We must protest.

From our friend Tif:

Timothy Dolan is the chief architect of the Pope’s anti-gay crusade in America.

He arrived in NYC spewing homophobia rhetoric, and was quickly
rewarded with an appointment as President of the United States
Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) which is leading the political campaign against us.

He has broken every basic social compact – by taking his church’s views into the political arena. He has violated the basic tenet of creating a safe space for all of us – all people and all religions – in America.

From Truthdig:

New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan is a man of the world in some
senses, showing his love of cigars and beer in this “60 Minutes
Overtime” clip, but he’s all about strict adherence to Catholic
doctrine when it comes to some hotly contested issues: gay marriage, female priests, abortion.

Here, he takes up a disappointingly common rhetorical tool to explain the church’s aversion to gay marriage, asking Morley Safer, “Where would, then, the tampering stop? I mean, I love my mom. I don’t have the right to marry her.” Sigh. —KA

Video Here:

From The New York Times:

Archbishop Dolan Condemns “Sexual Immorality” in Sunday Homily

Archbishop and Cardinal-to-be Timothy Dolan gave a stern homily on morality on Sunday at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, telling church attendees that sex outside of marriage is still a sin, despite what popular culture would have society believe.

“The one who, with God’s grace and mercy, tries his or her best to be pure and chaste is often thought of not as a hero, not a saint, but as a freak in our culture today,” Archbishop Timothy Dolan said at St. Patrick’s, reported the Daily News. “The biblical teaching on sexual responsibility is countercultural,”

Dolan continued to say that teaching abstinence is countercultural. Those who try to live according to the teachings of the bible including devout Catholics, he said, will face “ridicule and criticism.”

Dolan called on priests to do a better job in guiding their parishes to live a virtuous life. He linked societal crimes, such as violence, sex crimes, disease and broken homes and divorce to “sexual immorality,” reported the Daily News.

“The church has at times in the past, sadly, come across as, as some naysaying, puritanical nag, always giving a big ‘no, no, no’ to one of life’s greatest joys,” he said.

Dolan is set to become cardinal in a ceremony on Feb. 18, 2012 in Rome.


The Pope has called gay people “intrinsically disordered”, and his misguided homophobia works to surpress gays and women. Jesus never once mentioned homosexuality, and may have been gay or bi himself. In fact, Jesus said that gays as opressed persecuted people are Blessed!

The Pope and Arch-Homophobe Dolan really need to read their Bibles.

This is the word of Jesus, from the Sermon on The Mount.

MATTHEW 5:10-13 Blessed are they which are persecuted

5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

5:11 Blessed are you, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

5:12 Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

5:13 You are the salt of the earth: but if the salt has lost its savour, with what shall it be salted? it is thereafter good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

That is the word of Jesus.

The Archdiocese of New York is widely considered the spiritual heart of the American church. It counts about 2.6 million Catholics in a sprawling jurisdiction that includes includes Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island and several suburban counties.

Timothy Dolan opposes Marriage Equality in New York, and has pledged to work to oppose marriage equality, persecute and oppress gays in New York and in places out of his jurisdiction. This directly contradicts the teachings of Jesus.

The Pope and Timothy Dolan must learn what great harm is caused by their homophobia, which is defined as the irrational fear of, aversion to, animus or discrimination against gays, homosexuality or homosexuals.

However, anti-gay hate speech leads directly to animus, bullying, hate crimes, depression, confusion, low self esteem, and suicide. We must protest. Now is the time.

Ways to Protest:

1- Occupy The Church

The message is simple, yet loud; Equal Rights for All.
Get out over the weekend and go to your church. Make signs, bring whistles, pots and pans. Bring friends and
family. Those in New York City can do this at Saint Patrick’s
Cathedral on 5th Avenue at 51st Street. Even one or two people, or a small group can do this with great effect.

Sign suggestions:


Stop The Hate

Let Gays Marry

Church Homophobia Must End!

Cardinal Dolan Hates Gays

Gays are God’s Children Too

Blessed Are The Gays

Jesus Loves Me Too

Vote For Civil Rights

2- Write, call, email, weform and Fax your elected representatives, newspapers and media outlets, and pass this message on to everyone in your address book.

Get contact information here: www.congress.org

3- Write, call, email, webform and Fax your clergy, friends, and family

4-Write, call, email, webform and Fax Pope Benedict and
Cardinal-elect Timothy Dolan

Timothy Dolan’s Office
1011 First Ave
New York, NY 10022

Contact: Timothy Dolan
Phone: 212-371-1000

email [email protected] or [email protected]

More Here:


The Pope’s regular mailing address is:

His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI
Apostolic Palace
00120 Vatican City

email the Pope at [email protected] (English) or
[email protected] (Italian)

Call The Vatican Basilica Switchboard + 39 06 6982

More Here:




More from Tif:

Timothy Dolan TIMELINE:

FEB 23, 2009: DOLAN APPOINTED ARCHIBISHOP OF NY – St. Patricks Cathedral.





AUG 2011: DOLAN ON 60 MINUTES (i.e. anti-equality media campaign).


SEPT 22, 2011: DOLAN WARNS PRESIDENT OBAMA of “a national conflict between church and state of enormous proportions” if he supports DOMA repeal.







JAN 6, 2012: DOLAN NAMED CARDINAL BY POPE (Ceremony Feb 18, Rome).

(Here is what the Chicago folks did last week with their Cardinal Francis George:

Please take action and pass this on to everyone in your address book.

TAKE ACTION for equality now


NOTE:  CORRECTION: the source of the information has since said there was a misunderstanding, and that HRC, NGLTF & NCLR are not operating in coalition on the omnibus and have not opposed Title VI inclusion.  For a subsequent note on these conversations, see this post.  As the writer, I maintain this is what I was told, and regret any confusion.


In a shocking bit of news, it appears that the main LGBT organizations are blocking the inclusion of Title VI in the “Omnibus” equality bill being developed by Representative Polis for filing in January.

The outline shared by Polis’ office is sweeping, but clearly omits Title VI, which pertains to all federally funded programs, and marriage equality, which is not even on the table.

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act reads:

Sec. 2000d. Prohibition against exclusion from participation in, denial of benefits of, and discrimination under federally assisted programs on ground of race, color, or national origin.
No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Including Title VI in a true omnibus would add “sexual orientation and gender identity” to this list, as has been proposed regularly since the omnibus idea first emerged in 2009, and would effectively end federally subsidized discrimination.

It appears, however, that a long-needed coalition of LGBT corporations has formed, and is now speaking with one voice against an inclusive omnibus.


The pro-offered argument is “pragmatism.” In other words, as the story goes, the Omnibus will be more viable legislatively if Title VI is not included.

Of course, this sounds immediately fishy. It would almost be better to hear them say: “We don’t want to put Title VI in play in 2012 because it will force Obama’s hand, and the opposition will be saying: ‘Look they want to force homosexuality on your community. Boo.’ So, since this is an election year, let’s file w/out Title VI, and then we’ll add it later, after the next election.”

It’s actually a convincing argument and we’ve heard ones like it before, like when they sought to leave transgendered people out of ENDA. It’s a politics of compromise whereby we negotiate against ourselves, before the game even starts, compromising principle, deflecting the call for equality.


If this is remotely true, filing an omnibus without TITLE VI sure doesn’t cut it.

Think about it. Title VI, by making it illegal to discriminate using federal money, enlists an enforcement army of thousands of contract managers, managing over $3,400 billion dollars, to stamp discrimination out. It is the mechanism by which our federal non-discrimination policy becomes a social norm via the vast economic power of the United States. This is how the money talks.

Of course, Gay Inc knows all of this. Representative Polis knows all of this. The DNC knows all of this.

So WHY does the outline Rep. Polis issued NOT INCLUDE TITLE VI?

Title VI, which has been in the eQualityGiving.org Omnibus since 2009, and the American Equality Bill from the outset. Title VI which puts “non-discrimination based on race, color, and national origin,” on every contract to every school, to every homeless youth program, to every police department, state, city, town, hospital, etc.

Title VI, which gives the 1000s of lawyers in the Department of Justice’s offices the power to sue to stop discrimination everywhere in America.

To many, this is where “pragmatism” comes into the picture, not in defining the goal. Because there is a reason the various non-discrimination laws exist, and their benefits will be of equal value to our community, and their exclusion our equal loss.


Possibly, but is that the appropriate standard? What is pragmatism anyway?

Pragmatism is the obstacle of choice in politics. It lives within the now, or even the past, but not the future. It says: yes your equality may be what you want, but do not seek it. It is the voice of the impossible blocking change.

From 1974 to 1994, LGBT organizations backed a Civil Rights Bill. In 1994, weary from a decade of AIDS, we made the pragmatic decision to drop an equality bill, and thereby, separated ourselves from our Civil Rights heritage. We decided to seek only an end to employment discrimination in a deal with potential allies, and for 17 years, have fought that pragmatic fight, unbeknownst to society at large.

Meanwhile, the world has passed us by. Marriage is legal in Argentina and South Africa where “sexual orientation” is protected in the Constitution. Our plight is recognized by the United Nations Human Rights Council and the Organization of American States, which has made explicit the duty under international law to “prevent, punish and eradicate” discrimination based on SO&GI.

The United States pushed those international resolutions under President Obama and Secretary Clinton, and is bound by them. They know that Title VI is the fulfillment of this duty. Everyone does. Surely pragmatism cannot dictate that we not seek its protection. The protection of human rights, under a clear duty to act, but not for us?


Because HRC, the NGLTF, NCLR, and a confidential list of others, led by an invisible hand, managed behind closed doors in secret and in concert, like only corporations can, have decided that it is not “pragmatic” to even file a bill for Equal Civil Rights protections. That we should not seek equal protection under the law, not now, not yet. That we should wait, and follow, with no public open conversation about the entire matter.

Of course it does depend on WHY WE ARE EVEN FILING AN OMNIBUS BILL?

NO ONE THINKS we are filing this bill to pass in this Congress. That is not the point.

The point of the omnibus, like the AEB, is to put EQUALITY on the table. To take OUR stance. To reflect OUR dignity. Not as a statement of the possible, but as a statement of collective intention to manifest our liberation.

It is an opportunity to be the change we seek. It is the chance to make our equality a major issue in the 2012 race, by giving our own people a beacon.

This is the “intangible” that pragmatic legislative or corporate analysis fails to grasp: The power of Collective Intention to manifest change beyond the possible in today’s terms. The power of a shared dream.


Our movement is ultimately about love. And two-spirited people have long been the shamans and visionaries, still dancing among us today. When Richard Noble takes to walking across country for Equal Civil Rights, he points the way. When the Mayor of West Hollywood and the City Council, as duly elected officials of a city that is 40% LGBT, issue a Resolution for the AEB, they declare it. When the Mayor of Salt Lake City calls upon the U.S. government for Equal Civil Rights for LGBT Americans, the way is clear.

Like this, we need Congressman Polis to be a representative visionary. As a rather pragmatic truth, the LGBT community has no directly elected representatives, neither among its organizations nor in Congress. So as a community and people, we rely on surrogates, custodians of the public trust to do the community bidding.

In this spirit, the call for the Omnibus has repeatedly come from the community. When eQualityGiving put forth the original draft in 2008, and The Dallas Principles spoke the truth of unity. When the National Equality Marchers demanded “Full Federal Equality.” When The American Equality Bill Project encamped for 37 days, and activists fasted. When hundreds chanted “CIVIL RIGHTS NOW” in Grand Central Terminal.

The community has spoken. When the Mayors of Oakland, Reno, Boulder, Salt Lake City and West Hollywood issue Proclamations. When the LGBT Community Centers in Denver & Boulder – the Congressman’s own district – issue Resolutions explicitly calling for Title VI and EQUAL Civil Rights.

When the Wall Street Occupiers say no more corporate control of politics and take to the street for the voice of the people, they speak for our movement as well. The legitimacy of our movement depends on it, and our destiny is tied to it. Corporations cannot set the dreams for all of us.

Our movement is spiritual. We seek to free people from discrimination that binds their very being, denying their soul’s journey on earth and the safe haven to become their authentic self. We are liberating all of society by securing the acknowledgement by this Government of its primary duty: to protect us as we are, not as someone else would have us be.

Ultimately our cause is a focal point of today’s holy wars, calling the ultimate question of love or anger, compassion or judgment.  And we should no longer hide from this responsibility or avoid this role.

When we INCLUDE TITLE VI we start a macro conversation about WHY LGBT PEOPLE ARE NOT ALREADY COVERED EQUALLY by federal non-discrimination laws, WHY we are not treated with dignity, and WHY discrimination is wrong.

When we INCLUDE TITLE VI we announce what we intend to accomplish, and that YES we are speaking to everyone, everywhere in this Country.

When we INCLUDE TITLE VI we are saying we are equal, and we expect our POLITICIANS to say so too.

We have had decades of pragmatism, while societal acceptance has over shot our own organizational expectations.

We’ve bowed to allies and other minorities, denying our own dignity in the process.

We’ve seen more and more teenagers taking their lives because we won’t force the macro conversation we need to have to address a societal wide illness of homophobia and transphobia, cultivated by our own Government and propagated by its laws, that leads to barbaric acts like parents rejecting their own offspring or people tied to fences and beaten to death.

We see exponential mental illnesses among our people, spiking under anti-gay referendum, police abuse, killings, political ostracizing, families torn apart, and the generalized rejection of an entire segment of society by their own community, not as a group, but individually in a forced emotional isolation born of fear.

The Civil Rights Act can’t change this. But the debate over our Equal Inclusion can. And then, after we win the legislative battle, after we build a chorus so loud we can no longer be ignored. Title VI will push that conversation deeply into every corner of this country, leaving no child behind and no dream deferred.

We’ve seen a sea change in public opinion ushered in by television programming, but not by a mass movement.

It’s time to find our common intention to liberate ourselves as a matter of entitlement.

It’s time to find our voice as a community entitled to respect as a matter of consciousness.

It’s time to file a bill for equality that says: WE ARE EQUAL & WE ARE NEXT.

For AN INCLUSIVE OMNIBUS, email: [email protected] Your input is invited.