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US Senate Approves Openly Gay Army Secretary

Eric Fanning's case was held up for 8 months

(Newser) - The Senate confirmed the long-stalled nomination of Eric Fanning to be Army secretary, making him the first openly gay leader of a US military service, the AP reports. The unanimous voice vote approval on Tuesday came after Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., dropped his opposition to Fanning after a senior Pentagon... More »

Charges: Father Murdered Son for Being Gay

And police are investigating the death of his wife, as well

(Newser) - A 69-year-old Southern California man has been charged with murdering his 29-year-old son for being gay, the Los Angeles Times reports. Police say Shehada Issa killed his son Amir Issa with a shotgun outside their home on Tuesday. The district attorney says Shehada had threatened to kill Amir for being... More »

FDA Lifts Ban on Gay Blood Donors

But new policy does come with restrictions

(Newser) - The nation's three-decade-old ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men was formally lifted Monday, but major restrictions will continue to limit who can donate. The Food and Drug Administration says it is replacing the lifetime ban with a new policy barring donations from men who have had... More »

Study Sees Roots of 'Gay Lisp' in Boyhood

It may explain the stereotype, says researcher

(Newser) - A documentary that's new on Netflix called Do I Sound Gay? explores the controversial topic of how some gay men sound, well, stereotypically gay. When it comes to the gay voice, Medical Daily notes that "as a society we associate" a lisp with being gay, though the lisp... More »

Study: DNA Test Can Predict Whether You're Gay

Potential for misuse troubles lead scientist, who's just left the lab

(Newser) - UCLA scientists think they've developed the first test that can accurately predict whether a man is gay based on his DNA, and all it takes is a swab of saliva, reports New Scientist . The researchers examined 400,000 epigenetic tags—"chemicals that latch onto DNA and help turn... More »

After SCOTUS Ruling, Shop Posts 'No Gays Allowed'

'I don't want them around me,' says hardware store owner Jeff Amyx

(Newser) - While many celebrated Friday's SCOTUS decision to legalize gay marriage in all 50 states, one Tennessee store owner wasn't flying any rainbow banners. Instead, Jeff Amyx—a "self-described 'blunt' man," per the New York Daily News —put a different sign up Monday at Amyx... More »

Washington, Lincoln, Nixon Were Gay: New Book

Larry Kramer's new book is ruffling feathers, dividing critics

(Newser) - George Washington and Abraham Lincoln were gay. So were Alexander Hamilton, Herman Melville, and Richard Nixon—at least according to a new book that the author considers true but his publisher is selling as fiction to avoid legal problems, the Guardian reports. Needless to say, Larry Kramer's 800-page The ... More »

Boy Scouts Chapter Flouts Ban, Hires Gay Adult Leader

National organization is 'looking into the matter'

(Newser) - In what advocates are calling a "watershed moment," the Boy Scouts' New York chapter said yesterday that it has hired the nation's first openly gay Eagle Scout as a summer camp leader, a direct and public challenge to the national Scouting organization's ban on openly gay... More »

Arkansas Passes Own 'Religious Freedom' Bill

Despite criticism that it's a cover for discrimination against gays

(Newser) - Indiana might be backing away from its controversial religious freedom law, but Arkansas is embracing one of its own. State lawmakers today approved the bill and sent it along to Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who is expected to sign, reports Arkansas Online . Arkansas lawmakers rejected attempts to include a clause that... More »

Indiana Businesses Could Now Refuse Gay Customers

Gov. Mike Pence signs Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law

(Newser) - Indiana Gov. Mike Pence today signed the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law—in a ceremony that was held behind closed doors for "no particular reason," says his rep . What it is, and what it means for Indiana, per the AP and Indianapolis Star :
  • What the new
... More »

Surveys Show Where LGBT Americans Live

Western cities top the list, and here's why

(Newser) - Want to meet Americans who tell pollsters they're gay? Then try metropolitan areas out West—including, oddly enough, Salt Lake City—even over East Coast or Midwestern cities, Vox reports. Drawing on surveys of more than 374,000 adults in 50 US cities, Gallup says the top five for... More »

NYC's St. Paddy's Parade Lets Gay Group March

OUT@NBCUniversal will carry own banner

(Newser) - For the first time, New York City's St. Patrick's Day parade, the biggest in the world, will allow a gay group to participate with a banner of its own, the AP reports. Previously, gay groups had only been allowed to join in combination with other groups, and their... More »

Rick Perry: Being Gay Like Being an Alcoholic

Perry's comment 'drew murmur of disbelief'

(Newser) - Rick Perry met with the Commonwealth Club of California yesterday and spoke on everything from Eric Cantor's defeat to homosexuality—in particular, sharing his belief that the latter can be overcome. "Whether or not you feel compelled to follow a particular lifestyle or not, you have the ability... More »

'Quarantine' Gays? Lawmaker Stands by His Book

Wyoming Rep. Troy Mader self-published nearly 30 years ago

(Newser) - Do gays demand the right to have sex with kids? Should gays who have sex be quarantined? That's what new Wyoming state legislator Troy Mader wrote in a book about AIDS nearly 30 years ago, and he still stands by at least some of it, the Casper Star-Tribune reports.... More »

NYC, Boston: Banning Gays at St. Pat Parades 'Obscene'

It's long past time, writes Michael Tomasky

(Newser) - The New York City and Boston St. Patrick's Day parades have received quite a bit of negative publicity this year for not allowing openly gay groups to march—a practice that Michael Tomasky calls "grotesque," "obscene," and "an abominable disgrace." In 2014, it'... More »

'Secret Gay Society' Imperils Pope: Ex-Swiss Guard

Elmar Mader accepts homosexuals but questions their loyalty

(Newser) - A gay lobby indeed exists at the Vatican and may pose a threat to Pope Francis, a former commander of the Swiss Guard tells a Swiss newspaper. "I cannot refute the claim that there is a network of homosexuals," said Elmar Mader, a Guard commandant from 2002 to... More »

Two Public Figures Come Out, One Loses Job

WWE wrestler Darren Young gets friendly reception, but...

(Newser) - Two gay men came out publicly this week and received totally different reactions. With Russia's anti-gay law making headlines , Russian TV personality Anton Krasovsky made his declaration on air, the Independent reports. "I’m gay, and I’m just the same person as you, my dear audience, as... More »

NJ Looks to Ban Gay Conversion Therapy

Would join California as only states to do so

(Newser) - California may soon have an ally in its battle against anti-gay psychological therapy. The New Jersey Assembly voted 56-14 yesterday to ban licensed therapists and social workers from pushing gay and lesbian young people to alter their sexuality, Reuters reports. The state Senate is likely to approve the measure Thursday.... More »

Obama: Scouts Should Let In Gays and Lesbians

The president urges group to drop longstanding ban

(Newser) - President Barack Obama says the Boy Scouts of America should open its membership to gays and lesbians when its national executive board discusses the issue this week. Obama praised the scouts as "a great institution" that promotes young people, giving them lifelong leadership training and opportunities. During a pre-Super... More »

Preacher Blames Sandy on Gays and Obama

Romney also at fault, blogs John McTernan

(Newser) - The real cause of Hurricane Sandy has nothing to do with weather patterns: It's the fault of gay people and President Obama, who supports marriage equality, writes an extreme-right Christian preacher on his blog . "God is systematically destroying America," writes John McTernan, according to the Huffington Post... More »

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