National

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By the numbers: Tyler Clementi

18

Age of Tyler Clementi when he committed suicide last fall by jumping off the George Washington Bridge after learning that fellow Rutgers University students filmed him having sex with a man and webcast it.

3

Years of a pre-trial intervention program that Molly Wei, 19, accepted when she pleaded not guilty May 6 for her role in the webcast. If she completes the program, charges against her will be dropped.

300

Hours of community service Molly Wei must also complete, in a deal accepted by Clementi’s parents. She must also testify against Clementi’s roommate, Dharun Ravi, who faces 15 counts of invasion of privacy and bias intimidation.

10

The length of the hearing, in minutes.

5

Maximum years in prison under New Jersey law for a count of secretly collecting images of nudity or sexual contact, then distributing them.

 

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Bill Clinton supports New York same-sex marriage movement

Former President Bill Clinton

Former President Bill Clinton favors New York allowing gay couples to marry, according to a press release issued by the Human Rights Campaign earlier today.

The HRC says that Clinton made the statement last week.

"Our nation's permanent mission is to form a 'more perfect union' - deepening the meaning of freedom, broadening the reach of opportunity, strengthening the bonds of community. That mission has inspired and empowered us to extend rights to people previously denied them. Every time we have done that, it has strengthened our nation. Now we should do it again, in New York, with marriage equality. For more than a century, our Statue of Liberty has welcomed all kinds of people from all over the world yearning to be free. In the 21st century, I believe New York's welcome must include marriage equality," Clinton's statement says.

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By the numbers: Your tax dollars at work

$520

Hourly rate the U.S. House planned to pay law firm King & Spalding to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal ban on gay marriage.

$500,000

The initial cap on congressional payments to King & Spalding, which could be negotiated higher.

$193.3 million

What the military spent from 2004 to 2009 to replace gay troops discharged under ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ The policy is now being repealed.

$125,000

Estimated cost of one congressional hearing. Since resuming control of the U.S. House, Republicans have held three on gay issues: Two on repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and one on DOMA.

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Breaking: King & Spalding attorney Paul Clement leaves firm to keep defending DOMA

Paul Clement, the attorney hired by the U.S. House to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, has resigned his position at King & Spalding after the law firm decided not to defend the case, according to Politico.com, a website covering politics and other news.

Politico writer Josh Gerstein shares part of Clement's resignation letter:

"I resign out of the firmly held belief that a representation should not be abandoned because the client's legal position is extremely unpopular in certain quarters. Defending unpopular clients is what lawyers do ... I recognized from the outset that this statute implicate very sensitive issues that prompt strong views on both sides. But having undertaken the representation, I believe there is no honorable court for me but to complete it," writes Clement.

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Breaking: King & Spalding announces it will not defend DOMA

Les Zuke, director of communications for King & Spalding, issued a statement this morning that the firm founded in Atlanta would no longer defend DOMA.

“Today the firm filed a motion to withdraw from its engagement to represent the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group of the House of Representatives on the constitutional issues regarding Section III of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. Last week we worked diligently through the process required for withdrawal," Robert D. Hays Jr., the firm's chairperson, said in a statement.

“In reviewing this assignment further, I determined that the process used for vetting this engagement was inadequate. Ultimately I am responsible for any mistakes that occurred and apologize for the challenges this may have created," Hays added.

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Lee Farkas found guilty of ‘one of largest bank frauds in history’

Lee Farkas, former manager at a company that owned Blake's on the ParkLee Farkas, once a manager of the company that owned Atlanta gay bar Blake's on the Park, was found guilty Tuesday of being the "mastermind" in a $2.9 billion fraud trial that officials said was "one of the largest bank frauds in history."

The Justice Department's criminal division chief, Lanny Breuer, said Farkas, 58, was "one of the masterminds in one of the largest bank frauds in history" and that his misconduct "poured fuel on the fire of the financial crisis," according to a report by the Associated Press.

In June, Farkas, who is gay, was indicted on one count of conspiracy, six counts of bank fraud, six counts of wire fraud and three counts of securities fraud. Farkas was found guilty of 14 of these counts.

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Emory receives ‘historic’ grant to study how black LGBT and civil rights movements intersect

Emory University has received a two-year $234,000 grant to explore how the civil rights movement intersects with today's black LGBT movements.

The grant is the largest awarded to Atlanta-based Emory from the Racial Justice, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity program of the Arcus Foundation, "a global foundation dedicated to advancing equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people," reports the Emory Report.

"It is historic that the Arcus Foundation has taken this step," Rudolph P. Byrd, the Johnson Institute's founding director and Goodrich C. White Professor of American Studies, told the Emory Report.

Ten national scholars and civil rights and LGBT experts will comprise the first-of-its-kind working group will begin meeting this week "to present papers and establish a dialogue with faculty and students," according to the Emory Report.

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[Video] Georgia transgender woman speaks out on discrimination

A new video is out from In the Life Media featuring two transgender woman — Ja'briel from Hinesville, Ga., located just more than four hours south of Atlanta near Savannah, and Michelle, who is from Los Angeles — speaking out about the discrimination they face.

The video is being released to highlight the findings of the first national report on transgender discrimination released in February by the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force.

"Everything is kinda of taboo in the South and instead of trying to understand, people tend to go off hearsay … they tend to construct things in their minds an image of what they think a transgender person is," says Ja'briel, who is a school bus driver.

As an African-American trans woman in the rural South, Ja'briel said finding a job is also difficult.

“I went to school and earned a degree, but because of discrimination I’m limited in my employment options, and so it’s been very troubling to know that this is an extra burden on me financially and in other ways,” Ja’briel says.

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‘Historic’ report calls for LGBT data in health research, records

IOM Chair Robert Graham

To better understand the health of LGBT people, questions about sexual orientation and gender identity should be included in federally funded surveys and electronic health records, according to a new report from the Institute of Medicine.

The groundbreaking report, considered “historic” by some, is another step in the federal recognition of LGBT people as a population who has its own specific health needs.

“It’s easy to assume that because we are all humans, gender, race, or other characteristics of study participants shouldn’t matter in health research, but they certainly do,” IOM Committee Chair Robert Graham said March 31, when the report was released.

Graham is a professor of family medicine and public health sciences at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati.

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Interview: How Atlanta changed the heart of gay marriage opponent Louis Marinelli

Louis Marinelli, former NOM strategist, recently came out in favor of same-sex marriage

When the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage brought its “Summer of Marriage” tour to the Georgia Capitol in August 2010, more than 300 counter-protesters gathered across the street to show support for same-sex marriage.

The vibrant counter-protest was a stark contrast to the NOM rally, which drew only about 35 attendees, including the event’s organizers. Among them was Louis Marinelli, a self-described conservative Republican who spearheaded the tour.

On his website, Louis recently came out of his own closet with the revelation that he now supports civil marriage for gay couples.

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Service Chiefs: DADT repeal implementation ‘going very well’

Military Chiefs at a Don't Ask, Don't Tell hearing before the House Armed Services Committee

The House Armed Services Committee held a hearing today on the implementation of the repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell.” For the first time since the repeal was signed into law by President Barack Obama late last year, the military's service chiefs were called before Congress to testify on the anti-gay policy's repeal.

Though no firm date for full repeal was given, several service chiefs said their branches are aiming to complete training before mid-summer and that most were on track or ahead of schedule with regard to training.

Today's hearing featured Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz, Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos and Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Peter Chiarelli, who represented the Army in the place of Gen. George Casey, who was tending to family matters.