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  WINDY CITY TIMES

NATIONAL Marriage video, non-binary person killed, memo, Buttigieg, Fauci
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2020-07-13

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U.S. District Judge William Orrick, a federal judge in San Francisco, ordered videos of a landmark 2010 trial that led to the striking down of California's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage be released next month, Politico reported. Orrick ruled that the videos of the case initially called Perry v. Schwarzenegger be unsealed Aug. 12, rejecting arguments from social conservatives who wanted to keep the recordings under wraps. A coalition of news media outlets, including Politico, urged the court to make the videos public because of the public interest in the case about Proposition 8, which was approved in 2008.

Summer Taylor, a non-binary 24-year-old, was hit and killed by a car at a Black Lives Matter protest in Seattle on July 4, PinkNews reported. Taylor was participating in a peaceful protest against racism and police brutality when a car plowed into the crowd, striking two of the protesters. Taylor and Diaz Love ( the other person who was hit ) were taking part in the Black Femme March, which had closed down a section of Interstate 5. Dawit Kelete was charged with two counts of vehicular assault.

U.S. Sens. Kamala Harris ( D-California ) and Patty Murray ( D-Washington ) are leading a new effort calling on U.S. Attorney General William Barr to rescind a memo against protecting transgender people in the workforce in the wake of the recent landmark Supreme Court decision prohibiting anti-LGBTQ discrimination, The Washington Blade noted. In a joint letter, the 27 Senate Democrats who signed the letter wrote the 2017 memo signed by former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions "misstates the law, poses an ongoing threat to the well-being of transgender workers and invites liability for employers that misguidedly rely upon it."

Former presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg has signed with CAA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners, which will work with him to amplify his series of public policy initiatives, Deadline noted. CAA and Brillstein represented Buttigieg in the deal for his next book, Trust: America's Best Chance, which Liveright Publishing will release Tuesday, Oct. 6. After his presidential campaign, Buttigieg formed a group called Win the Era, focusing on supporting and endorsing down ballot candidates and the next generation of leaders, with some emphasis on contenders in typically conservative areas.

Dr. Anthony Fauci said it remains unclear if people with HIV are more vulnerable to the coronavirus, The Washington Blade reported. "The story is not yet completely out in individuals with HIV," he said during a panel that took place on the final day of the 2020 International AIDS Conference. "Those with HIV that's not controlled in the sense of controlled viremia as opposed to those with good control. That knowledge store is still evolving." The International AIDS Conference was to have taken place last week in San Francisco and Oakland, California, but it happened virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Nathan Ivie, a Utah county commissioner who came out as gay last year, lost in a primary election, Queerty noted. Ivie came out in 2019 as a way of showing the world that a gay man could be accepted within ultra-conservative Utah. Ivie ( who separated from his wife prior to coming out0 lost to a conservative challenger, former Marine Lt. Col. Tom Sakievich, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.

Grindr received between $1 million and $2 million in loans from the federal government's paycheck protection program ( PPP ), Out.com noted, citing the New York Post. In its inception, the protection program was aimed specifically at small businesses that had to shut down because of social distancing. The company was recently bought for $608 million. Previously owned by Kunlun Tech, this summer Grindr officially became the property of San Vicente Acquisition and put in place Jeff Bonforte and Rick Marini—two cisgender, heterosexual, self-proclaimed allies—as CEO and COO, respectively.

Christian Cooper, the Black man who filmed a white woman ( Amy Cooper, no relation ) calling the police on him while he was birdwatching in Central Park in May, has not cooperated with the Manhattan district attorney's investigation, CNN.com noted, citing The New York Times. "On the one hand, she's already paid a steep price," Christian ( who's openly gay, according to media reports ) said in a statement, according to the Times. "That's not enough of a deterrent to others? Bringing her more misery just seems like piling on."

With in-person health services limited due to COVID-19, Greater Than AIDS, a public information initiative of San Francisco-based KFF ( Kaiser Family Foundation ), and Walgreens announced a new program to provide 10,000 OraQuick In-Home HIV test kits to support expanded testing options in high-need areas, a press release noted. Local health agencies and community-based organizations are distributing the FDA-approved, self-administered tests at no cost to those unable to get tested in person.

While in the midst of campaigning for re-election after winning the 2018 Democratic primary bid for state House representative for the 181st District in Pennsylvania, Philadelphia native Malcolm Kenyatta proposed to boyfriend Matt Miller, Ph.D., Instinct Magazine noted. The two then had a quick photoshoot to share the happy event with the rest of the world. Among those congratulating the couple were former Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg and his husband, Chasten, as well as state Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon.

Former Fox News personality Shepard Smith is joining CNBC as anchor of an evening news program, Deadline noted. The newscast, The News with Shepard Smith, will air Monday through Friday starting in the fall. Smith is now based at CNBC's headquarters. Smith also will take the title of the network's chief general news anchor and chief breaking general news anchor, as well as executive editor of the nightly newscast. Smith ( who happens to be openly gay ) abruptly left Fox News in October, after 23 years at the news channel.

A man was arrested for allegedly spraying anti-LGBT graffiti on the walls of a Palm Springs community center, MYNewsLa.com reported. Charinda Godakanda, 45, was arrested outside the James O. Jessie Desert Highland Unity Center and booked at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning on suspicion of felony vandalism, a "misdemeanor hate crime," plus alleged weapons crimes.

A man seen in a viral video delivering vulgar and racist comments toward an Asian family celebrating a birthday at a restaurant in Carmel Valley has been identified by multiple publications as Michael Lofthouse, CEO of San Francisco cloud computing firm Solid8, CBS San Francisco reported. The woman who posted the video told KION the incident happened as her family was celebrating her aunt's birthday on the Fourth of July and that man was insulting and harassing her family with racist language, saying, "F— you Asians," "Go back to whatever f—— Asian country you're from" and "You don't belong here." Lofthouse later apologized and resigned from the company.

The organizers of Key West's Fantasy Fest costuming and masking festival announced that the 2020 festival, originally scheduled Oct. 16-25, would be canceled to protect against the potential spread of COVID-19, a press release noted. The festival typically draws some 60,000 people to Key West's Duval Street for its highlight parade, as well as several thousand for its annual Masquerade March, Zombie Bike Ride, street fair and costume competitions. Fantasy Fest 2021 is scheduled Oct. 22-31, 2021.

In Georgia, four Jimmy John's workers were fired after a social-media video was posted that customers said was "racist" and "hateful," The Charlotte Observer reported. The incident occurred at a store in Woodstock, where the employees filmed themselves playing with a noose that appears to be made of bread dough, the video showed. One employee draped the "noose" over the neck of another and yanked it repeatedly as the others watched and laughed.

Describing it as a "small first step," the group responsible for administering official competitive tournaments for Scrabble in the United States is considering removing slurs and other offensive words from its list of words acceptable for game play, Out.com noted. The North American Scrabble Players Association posted an open letter to its members and asked the group's advisory board to reconsider the use of words like bulldyke, faggot and blowjob, as well as the N-word.

The board of directors of San Francisco Pride said that more than 50,000 viewers tuned in for the official Pride 50 online celebration that took place June 27—28, a press release noted. With concurrent live streams across two virtual stages, Pride 50 offered 26 hours of programming. The event amplified Black voices with headliners Big Freedia and Thelma Houston, paid homage to the history of San Francisco Pride, and offered words of inspiration and hope for the future.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said during a CNN interview that the Trump administration still has no plan to secure the safe return of students to school this fall—underscoring the administration's position that school districts are basically on their own and that students should return to classes in person, regardless of the risks, CNN.com noted. DeVos refused to say whether school districts should follow the guidelines set out by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to keep children safe, which Trump has described "as very tough and expensive."

The U.S. Navy celebrated a historic moment as it announced Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle was set to become its first Black female tactical fighter pilot, ABC News reported. Swegle has earned her wings as a U.S. Navy fighter pilot and will receive her "Wings of Gold" in late July, according to a tweet posted on Thursday by the Chief of Naval Air Training.

Fox News host Tucker Carlson's top writer, Blake Neff, resigned after CNN Business discovered that he had been posting racist and sexist material in an online forum under a pseudonym, Yahoo! News reported. According to CNN Business, Neff disparaged Black and Asian people and derided a woman for being a "megashrew" in multiple pseudonymous posts. Comments include, "Black doods staying inside playing Call of Duty is probably one of the biggest factors keeping crime down," which CNN said Neff wrote last month.

Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn just beat their own record by another year, People.com noted. The former president and first lady marked 74 years of marriage July 7. Last October, they became the longest-married presidential couple, breaking the previous record set by former President George H. W. Bush and Barbara Bush, who were married 73 years and 111 days at the time of the former first lady's death in 2018.


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