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View Article  ENDA national day of action
Don't get fired -- get fired up! Join Pride at Work in a national day of action, Tuesday May 18th. If you've ever made a phone call, written a letter or attended a lobby day in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), if you have ever stood up for fair treatment for all workers, LGBT workers need you to make one more phone call today.

Please urge your representatives: "Pass ENDA now."

In a majority of states, workers can be legally fired simply because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. Employment discrimination for any reason is wrong, and it's that simple.

Please call your Representative by dialing the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and asking to be connected to their office. When you reach the office or their voice mail:

* Tell them you support inclusive ENDA, HR 3017;
* Urge them to pass it now, without amendments; and
* Ask your member of Congress to call their leadership to bring ENDA up for a vote.


Peggy Shorey, Executive Director
View Article  Mel Marin in the 3rd Congressional District -- Dear Lord, He's Serious

From the Tribune Review's coverage of a Democratic challenge to Congresswoman Dahlkemper who has been in office for less than one term.  I shake me head to think that people actually believe this hate and fear based rhetoric.

Marin cited three stances that would be important to him if elected:

? Denouncing the "homosexual agenda" -- his belief is gay couples adopting children would be "legalized molestation."

? Saving seniors from "execution" -- he believes the elderly are victims of a government program that sends seniors who experience memory loss to hospice care.

? Increasing government spending in the district to stimulate the economy.

Legalized molestation is so incredibly offensive that I'm sputtering. How can someone be serious about this stuff?  How can you claim to be focused on jobs when you actually believe there is a homosexual agenda, much less one that involes hurting children?  It is sickening and disgusting.

Congresswoman Dahlkemper is uncommitted on the inclusive ENDA legislation. How are we as a community doing to persuade her that people don't believe this rhetoric unless they are simply filled with ignorance and hate? 

I can't even muster up the outrage.  He's a small-minded bigot that reminds us why we need to keep pushing our party to the left, to the left, to the left.  Sigh.



View Article  Elections n'at

Here's the finalized Steel City Stonewall 2010 Primary endorsement slate.

Here's the finalized Gertrude Stein Political Club of Pittsburgh slate.

Here's the Democracy for Pittsburgh slate.

Here's the slate from the Pennsylvania NOW PAC.



View Article  The Dyke March is on ....

Just got word that Dyke March permit is in Eli's hands so we are all set.  Here's the route:



The speaker will be Miranda Vey of the Pittsburgh Dykes on Bikes. She's an articulate, insightful woman with a wonderful ability to inspire.  I think it will be a great event. 

Here's hoping the police show up as promised.

View Article  Of Bloomfield and bases ... courtesy of the City Paper

Lots of LGBTQ love from the City Paper.

I know the man called Potter loves a letter to the editor and he has one today from Steel City Stonewall President, Dana Elmendorf.  She believes the paper unfairly described Onorato's LGBTQ support.  Potter disagrees. Go read for yourself.

Speaking of Bloomfield, the City Paper provided coverage of a LGBTQ rally against gay bashing. They have an excellent quote on the realities many queer people face from one of our favorite dykes, Eli Kuti.

Some people just don't blend in or can't blend in," says Eli Kuti, organizer of the city's Dyke March. "You should be able to walk down the street and feel safe."

But some don't, she says, in part because they feel they can't turn to police for incidents of anti-LGBT or domestic violence because "they aren't taken seriously." Those concerns lead to victims not filing police reports, she says.

Kuti acknowledges "many cops don't have prejudices and just don't know what to do."

But still, the victim's fear of reporting crimes, she observes, sometimes outweighs the risk of it happening to someone else. 

I hope someone moves us from talking about talking with the police to making it happen.  People don't want there to be gay bashing.  Most cops agree.  It shouldn't be 2010 and we are still looking for a mechanism to make these conversations happen. 

Somewhere in between the anger and the power, there lies the ability to generate change.

It is going to take one hell of a leader.


View Article  Stop recruiting me.

I don't like being told what to do. 

I support Joe Hoeffel and I think an impressive turnout from the progressive base will help Sestak AND send a message that we are a force.  I get that there are progressives who support other candidates and believe sincerely they are doing the right thing.  Which they are.  For them.

Regardless of the outcome, my admiration and respect for Joe as a statewide leader will not diminish.  I'm not that kind of progressive.

I get that we have to hit the ground running on May 19 to ensure Corbett doesn't become the Governor, but you aren't going to win me over by pounding that in my head.  I'm stubborn.  And I have enough common sense that if Joe wins, I will be incredibly happy but not expect you to embrace him right off the bat.

I think the entire state is best served by a progressive candidate like Joe ... not just on social issues, but as a womb owning lesbian ... those issues matter. I've also connected the dots from social issues to economic issues a thousand times.  I want to control my body and my future. 

Regardless of the outcomes, progressive of all stripes will be part of the momentum toward November.  Let's be adult enough to recognize the consensus is the tool, not demands.  I honestly think Sestak changes the game and I'm really intrigued to see what shakes out. 

I'm not retreating from my positions. Someone told me I've been hard on Onorato.  I believe my opinions are based on his voting record and certainly do not stem from personal animosity -- I've never met him in person.  It is my job to advocate for the candidate that will best serve my community -- my queer community and my community of women and my community of working and lower rung folks.  That's doesn't make me mean, just insistent.

I invite all comers to continue the dialogue.  I hope I've convinced you to vote and I appreciate the feedback that one lesbian can make an impact by simply refusing to be silenced.  We need more LGBTQ voices to engage the system, not duck underneath it.  That helps no one. 

Holding elected leaders accountable is part of our job as advocates and activists. I hope Get Equal rolls into Pittsburgh and generates the connection between the queer community through the power of activism.  Rest assured, we have battles left to fight.  We have meetings with waffling legislators, but maybe we have a need for direct action as well.  Maybe we need to sit in Joe Markosek's office instead of fruitlessly trying to get a meeting.

Marriage?  Posh, let's be realistic.  I want to preserve my job (HB 300), deal with bigots who hate on us (Hate Crimes), eliminate unfair taxes that keep me financially oppressed (Domestic Partner Equality Act) and protect LGBTQ kids (Foster Care Bill of Rights).  Marriage equality could do a lot of that, tis true. 

But I'm a realist.  I wish to God Senator Daylin Leach was using his considerable skills to champion a Senate companion bill to HB 300.  We need to freakin figure that dynamic out.

Enough for tonight. Vote. 





View Article  Don't we all have a Kevin from Kindergarten?
View Article  I made the list ...

I don't know what the list means, but I'm connected to Bruce Kraus so it must be good. 

I also received my Lesbian of the Year award in the mail.  Now I have to figure out where to hang it ...

View Article  Celebrate Life, Celebrate Art - part deux

I took a stroll around the auction. I'm awed by some of the artwork. A painting called "Dell's" caught my eye, but I didn't catch who created it. 

I think Persad is awsome and amazing. I donate to them through the United Way each year.  I refer many, many people there for all sorts of services.

Things are quiet here right now.  People are mingling, enjoying the entertainment and bidding away on the art. 

This event supports the organizations "Free Care Fund" which serves people in our community who couldn't otherwise access these services.  Since you know LGBTQ folks are disproportionately represented among the uninsured ...good thing this event has raised more than $3 million over the past twenty years.

That's a lot of $200 bids.


View Article  Celebrate Life, Celebrate Art Begins

For the second year in a row, we are live blogging from Celebrate Life, Celebrate Art -- Persad's annual art auction and reception.  This is the final year the event will be held at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Oakland due to renovations at the museum. 

Next year they may be at the August Wilson Center, according to inside sources.  That would be very cool.  And closer to my house.

More than 200 artists have donated.  More than 1800 guests are expected.

And @Ledcat is tweeting. 

Hold on. 

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The Correspondents