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SOLIDARITY Contingent in the Gay Pride Parade!

Meet at 11 AM, Sunday, June 25 in front of the Uptown Target  4466 N. Broadway (details below)

The election of Donald Trump has heralded a climate of open bigotry against immigrants, Muslims and other groups already facing discrimination in the United States.

Following on the heels of declining living standards during the Obama years, with their unchecked police brutality targeting Blacks, Latinos, Native Americans and other people of color, the United States has now slipped even deeper into a downwards spiral of vicious fear-mongering against those already most victimized by it.

Trump does not represent some unstoppable fascist advance. Several of his obnoxious initiatives, most notably his Muslim ban, have been blocked (at least temporarily) by people pouring out into the streets and demonstrating at airports.

Make no mistake: it wasn’t the courts or the Constitution that saved the day. It was the popular outpouring in the streets – Muslims, immigrants AND those in solidarity with them – raising their voices in unity. Read the rest of this entry »

Join us for an intergenerational event to celebrate the accomplishments of True Colors’ Youth Leadership Team! The night will include free food, community and an opportunity to learn about the work of the Gay Spirit Radio Archive Project. This year, our team has archived 11 years of local queer history! Come learn about how you can get involved, and about upcoming True Colors programs including Queer Academy!

Friday, June 30th
6:30 – 8:30 PM
30 Arbor St, Hartford
Food from Bear’s Smokehouse Barbecue!

Brought to you by the Gay Spirit Radio Archive Project, find out more at gayspiritradio.net

The facebook page for this event go to HERE.

For information on how to donate to keep the Queer Academy afloat please call Kamora at True Colors. This is a very important summer even for our queer youth.

 (1)

Here is a leaflet and sign posting we did a few years back. These leaflets were posted around downtown Hartford and passed out in the streets. We said why not post it again 17 years later.

Notes:

(1)  From the Black Orchid Collective is Queer Liberation and Class Struggle. JOMO says about this flag, “my friend, Sarah Hopkins, made this flag after we watched “Flag Wars,” a film about middle class, white gay men gentrifying a black neighborhood. The rainbow flag became a symbol of gentrification, so we realized we need to make our own flag which symbolizes working class, queer liberation.”

(2) Photo outside of the Stonewall Inn, June 1969. Fred Mc Darrah NYC.

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Image  —  Posted: June 24, 2017 in Call to Action, for your reflection, Quote of the week, Real Food For Thought, Saying it like it should be said.

Let’s start this dreadful article with a song written many years ago and sung by Phil Ochs. Here’s to the state of Mississippi. Don’t get us wrong and take a listen. Our title from Phil’s song says it all. You know Mary not much has changed in all of these years, not much at all.

and here is the dreadful article.

Appeals Court Allows Worst Anti-LGBTQ Law Ever To Go Into Effect In Mississippi

A three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals this week lifted a lower court injunction that had stopped the implementation of what many legal observers and LGBTQ activists view as the worst, most dangerous legislative attack on LGBTQ people yet.

Mississippi’s HB 1523, the “Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act,” signed into law by Gov. Phil Bryant in April of 2016 but put on hold by a federal judge, allows for the most far-reaching religious exemptions of any bill we’ve seen in the states. And it could eventually be the first big test of the Supreme Court’s newest justice, Neil Gorsuch, who has been a staunch defender of “religious liberty” and, by his own description, is in the mold of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, yet who has gay friends who claim he’s been misunderstood.

The law allows for businesses and government employees to decline service to LGBT people, and that includes bakers, florists, county clerks and even someone working at the department of motor vehicles, based on religious beliefs. It allows for discrimination in housing and employment against same-sex couples or any individual within a same-sex couple. Businesses and government, under the law, can regulate where transgender people go to the bathroom. The law allows mental health professionals and doctors, nurses and clinics to turn away LGBT individuals. It also allows state-funded adoption agencies to turn away LGBT couples.

The law could have a wide impact beyond LGBTQ people as well, allowing for broad discrimination against many people.

This bullshit law gets even better as the article goes on to say:

According to Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, under the law:

  • a government clerk could refuse to issue a marriage license to a couple because one person had been previously divorced;
    • a taxpayer-funded adoption agency could refuse to place a child with a happy and loving family because the parents lived together before they were married;
    • a taxpayer-funded organization that provides shelter to kids who have suffered child abuse could turn away a pregnant teenager;
    • a counseling group practice could refuse to see a mother and her teen who is experiencing severe depression because the woman is unmarried;
    • a counselor could refuse to help an LGBT person who called a suicide hotline;
    • a fertility clinic could refuse to treat a veteran and his partner because they are not married;
    • a car rental agency could refuse to rent a car to a same-sex couple on their honeymoon; and
    • a corporation could fire a woman for wearing pants.

    U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves had ruled the law unconstitutional ― a violation of the Establishment Clause ― in July of 2016 in a consolidated case, the plaintiffs in which included the Campaign for Southern Equality and LGBTQ-affirming churches and ministers. He issued a preliminary injunction. The 5th Circuit this week lifted that order, in a unanimous decision of the three-judge panel. Judge Jerry Smith, writing for the court, basically argued that the plaintiffs do not have standing because they have not yet experienced discrimination ― which, of course, wouldn’t happen until after the law is in effect, which makes it a bizarre ruling:

    he Establishment Clause is no exception to the requirement of standing. It is not enough simply to argue that there has been some violation of the Establishment Clause; The plaintiffs claim they have suffered a stigmatic injury from the statute’s endorsement of the Section 2 beliefs. That stigma can be a cognizable Establishment Clause injury, but even such stigmatic injury must be concrete and particularized.

    The court allowed that “a future plaintiff may be able to show clear injury-in-fact” but until then it did not see discrimination. That’s appalling, since the law on its face is all about discrimination and exclusion.

    Roberta Kaplan, lead counsel in the Campaign for Southern Equality’s case and the attorney who successfully argued against the Defense of Marriage Act before the Supreme Court, issued a statement saying she would seek to have the entire circuit court hear the case, an “en banc” review.

    No matter the outcome, the case will likely be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court (which, of course, may or may not take it up).

    In its 2014 Hobby Lobby decision, in which the Supreme Court ruled that the arts and crafts chain, and thus any closely-held corporation, could refuse to offer certain forms of contraception in its employer health care plan based on the religious beliefs of the owners, Justice Anthony Kennedy, in his concurrence, appeared to limit “religious liberty” claims in a way that some LBGT legal experts believed would protect LGBT people and other groups from discrimination.

    The high court had in that case affirmed a decision by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. But Justice Neil Gorsuch, who then was on the 10th Circuit and wrote the Hobby Lobby decision, unlike Justice Kennedy later on, was very broad in his decision favoring “religious liberty,” offering no caveats, prompting Lamda Legal to deem him “unacceptable” and “hostile” to LGBT rights. For that reason he’s been viewed as a threat to LGBT rights on the Supreme Court, even though some of his former clerks and friends are gay and have implied he would protect LGBT rights.

    Thus, it could be a test for the Supreme Court and the issue of religious exemptions to LGBT rights, as well as the first indication of the reach of Gorsuch’s view of religious liberty.

    Follow Michelangelo Signorile on Twitter:

Read the rest of this entry »

Food Served with Justice – Boycott Hamden Townhouse!
Public · Hosted by Unidad Latina en Acción – ULA

Sunday June 25, 11AM-1PM

Hamden Town House Restaurant, 2260 Whitney Ave. Hamden Ct.

Facebook page HERE.

Join six workers as they announce a lawsuit against Hamden Town House Restaurant. They were paid as little as, in some cases, $3.14, $4.20, or $5.97 per hour. They worked between 52 and 72 hours per week.

According to Connecticut law, they should have been paid the Connecticut minimum wage (currently $10.10 per hour). According to Connecticut and federal law, they should have been paid overtime when they worked more than 40 hours per week.

Wage theft is everywhere, and Connecticut is doing very little to stop these abuses. It’s up to us as a community to say NO MORE. Join the workers this Thursday as they courageously break the silence!

Nearly half of restaurant workers (46.3%) experience overtime violations, according to a national study (“Behind the Kitchen Door Multi-Site Study” 2011). While some restaurant workers earn a living wage, people of color are systematically confined to the lower paying and “back of the house” jobs like dishwasher, even when they have the same qualifications as white workers. Restaurant workers of color earn 56% less than white restaurant workers and experience poverty at twice the rate (“The Great Service Divide” 2014).

Police literally drag people away from McConnell’s office as protests break out over GOP bill

People are removed from a sit-in outside of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's office as they protest proposed cuts to Medicaid, Thursday, June 22, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)