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Atlanta LGBT Civil Rights March participants urged to play role in upcoming elections

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Approximately 50 people marched from Woodruff Park to the state Capitol on Saturday, April 21, as part of the 2012 Worldwide LGBT Civil Rights March that was to take place in cities across the country and world, according to organizers.

At a rally at the state Capitol following the march, numerous people spoke about the challenges lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people face in Georgia and around the world in their fight for full equality.

But they also urged people to be committed and dedicated to achieving equality because the opposition works every day to plant obstacles, target gay-friendly politicians and strategize politically to bring the LGBT movement to a standstill.

One way to show the commitment is to work for candidates who believe in LGBT equality and vote on July 31 in the primary for state and local elected officials.

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Atlanta prepares for 2012 Worldwide LGBT Civil Rights March

2012 Worldwide LGBT Civil Rights March

Atlanta is one of more than three dozen cities participating in a global march for LGBT equality on Saturday, April 21.

Organizers hope the event, billed as the “2012 Worldwide LGBT Civil Rights March,” will draw thousands of LGBT people and their allies to the streets to demand full equality and to raise awareness of ongoing LGBT issues.

The marches are the brainchild of Joe Knudson, an author based in Oklahoma City. Knudson said in a phone interview that the idea for a worldwide event came to him about a year ago when he created a Facebook campaign to draw attention to the struggle for LGBT equality.

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[Photos] Atlanta commemorates MLK Day

11th annual Bayard Rustin/Audre Lorde Breakfast

Bayard Rustin/Audre Lorde Breakfast

The 11th annual Bayard Rustin/Audre Lorde Breakfast was held Jan. 16, 2012, at St. Mark United Methodist Church as part of the official Martin Luther King Jr. march's events. More than 250 people attended the breakfast with the theme "Setting Our Agenda for Justice" and included food as well as discussion surrounding such issues as reproductive rights, gender equality, HIV stigma and economic disparity.

Founded by Craig Washington and Darlene Hudson, the breakfast is a way for black LGBT people "to take the lead in bringing all groups to remember the contributions of lesbian poet activist Audre Lorde and civil rights activist and aide to Dr. King, Bayard Rustin," says Hudson. (Photos by Dyana Bagby)

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Low turnout cancels Savannah March for Equality

Savannah March for Equality called off

Only 15 people gathered in Johnson Square in downtown Savannah on Saturday afternoon to March For Equality. The turnout for the Sept. 24 march was so disappointing, the event’s organizers, Act Out Savannah, decided not to march at all.

“I am ashamed of my own community here today,” said Cody Patterson, executive director of Act Out Savannah, “because they had a chance to actually make their presence known and let it be known that they are here to fight for full federal equality, and they’re willing to do what it takes, and yet as we can tell they are completely absent.”

Act Out has been a part of several rallies and protests in Savannah since forming last summer, typically seeing much larger crowds turn out to show their support. Last year the group gathered almost 100 to rally in response to an alleged attack on a young gay man by two U.S. Marines.