Washington becomes seventh state to recognize same-sex marriages

Washington State's Gov. Christine Gregoire

Washington became the seventh state to allow same-sex marriage today after Gov. Christine Gregoire signed into law a bill that will allow full marriage rights to same-sex couples. New Hampshire, Iowa, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Vermont and the District of Columbia also allow same-sex marriage.

Gregoire called the law’s passage “historic.”

“I commend our House members and thank Rep. Jamie Pedersen for sponsoring this bill,” Gregoire said last week. “Our legislators showed courage, respect, and professionalism. I look forward to signing this piece of legislation, and putting into law an end to an era of discrimination.”

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Keisha Waites sworn in as fourth openly gay Ga. representative

You can now call her state Rep. Keisha Waites.

Waites took the oath of office today to become the state representative for District 60. The ceremony took place at the Georgia State Capitol with Fulton County Superior Court Judge Doris Downs swearing her in.

Standing with Waites as she took the oath of office were her mother, Christine Harden, and her nephew, Elias Muhammad, who held the Bible.

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Atlanta Police Department seeking a few good men and women — yes, including you

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There is definite tension between the Atlanta Police Department and the city’s LGBT residents — the unconstitutional raid on the Atlanta Eagle continuing fallout and accusations the department didn’t hire an applicant because he is HIV positive, just to name a few of the reasons for the bumpy relationship.

But there is a strong gay presence on the force as well, with two LGBT liaisons and Deputy Chief Renee Propes, a lesbian, heading up a major division of the force. The police have also made one arrest in the anti-gay beating of Brandon White.

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Brutal attack becomes rallying cry to renew hate crimes legislation in Ga.

Inside the JVC Grocery & Deli, a large jar of pickled eggs sits on the front counter next to a window filled with lottery tickets. On a recent evening, a young woman puts in an order of hot wings. A piece of fried chicken — a wing — sits alone on the warming shelf behind the glass in the deli area of the store to the left of the entrance.

Three men in the back right corner of the store, wearing winter jackets, concentrate on gambling machines. Two-liter bottles of Fanta, Sprite and Coca-Cola line the floors along the racks holding typical grocery store stock — candy bars, potato chips, milk, eggs, laundry detergent, dishwashing liquid.

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