Minneapolis Pays Off The Psychologist It Fired For Teaming Up With Illinois Family Institute

Michael Campion, a psychologist fired from his job to screen potential Minneapolis police officers because of his ties to the anti-gay Illinois Family Institute, will receive a 0,000 settlement (which includes legal fees) from the city, whose City Council voted not to take the case to trial, which would have begun next week. Something about the court telling the city that Campion has a strong First Amendment argument or something.


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Queerty

—  John Wright

Capitol Resource Institute Urged Phone Calls To Cali Gov & Attorney General To “Do Their Jobs”

Sometimes it’s hard not to recognize that the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community, as well as our friends, family, and allies, don’t seem as good at organizing as those on the religious right — as least with regards to phone and letter campaigns.

California’s Capitol Resource Institute (CRI) sent out an email blast yesterday, entitled “Defend Prop. 8!” It’s a call to their conservative, religious base to call the Gov. Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Jerry Brown to get on their phones and start calling. How CRI framed the issue in their e-blast:

Jerry Brown is not appealing.  Put another way, Jerry Brown has refused to file the appeal of the recent federal trial court decision declaring Proposition 8 unconstitutional.  Yes, it is his responsibility as the Attorney General (AG) to defend voter-approved measures, but he does not agree with Proposition 8.  

And his failure to do his duty may end this battle right here.

As John Eastman points out in the Flashreport, unless the official government defendants file a notice of appeal the issue may end with the decision of one judge in San Francisco.   The proponents of the measure may not have standing to file the appeal.

Thumbnail Link To The Capital Resource Institute's E-Blast, Entitled 'Defend Prop 8!'But, as Eastman also points out, the Governor can file this appeal.  While the Governor also opposes Proposition 8, we hope that he is fair minded enough to realize that the people of California deserve a full hearing in the courts on this important measure.

Governor Schwarzenegger, under Government Code (GC) Section 12013 has the authority to direct AG Jerry Brown to appear on behalf of the State.  If the Attorney General refuses, then the Governor has the right to and should file the notice of appeal.  He may also employ additional counsel, as he deems expedient.  The lawsuit against Proposition 8, Perry v Schwarzenegger, even includes the Governor’s name because the lawsuit is against the State.  GC Section 12013 further reads that the Governor has the right to demand the AG’s appearance and supply additional counsel when suit or legal proceeding is pending against the State.  

We join John Eastman and the 7 million Californians who voted in favor of marriage in 2008 in strongly urging the Governor to file the notice of appeal and allow committed counsel to continue to defend Proposition 8.

Their call to action:

we need your help to pressure Governor Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Brown to do their jobs;  We have created a website asking them to defend Prop. 8.

Please sign our online petition, call and fax the Governor and Attorney General, and join our Facebook page. And forward this e-mail alert to family and friends and ask them to do the same.  

We need to flood the phones/faxes all day long.  

It is time we stand up and tell those who represent us to do their job and defend Prop 8

Call the Governor!

Phone: 916-445-2841

Fax: 916-558-3160

Talking Points When You Call the Governor:

• You were elected by the same people who amended our State Constitution to define and recognize marriage between one man and one woman.  Please represent us by defending Proposition 8.

• If you are not going to enthusiastically defend Proposition 8 in the courtroom then file the appeal so the supporters of Proposition 8 can do so.

• Even though you don’t agree with Proposition 8, it is only fair that you give the 7 million Californians who voted for this measure an opportunity to defend marriage in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Call the Attorney General

Phone: 916-324-5437

Fax: 916-445-6749

Talking Points When You Call the Attorney General:

• It is your Constitutional duty to defend Proposition 8.  Please do you job as California’s top law enforcer.

• If you choose not defend the Constitutionality of Proposition 8, then at least file an appeal and move out of the way.

• You are running for governor.  How can voters expect you to do your job as governor if you do not even do your job as attorney general?

In all the calls and faxes that went to California’s Governor and Attorney General’s offices yesterday, I know I asked myself “How many calls went to these offices in support of California’s stand not to appeal Prop 8?”

Well, I was in communication with a staffer from Equality California yesterday. That staffer informed me that when someone from their organization asked the Governor’s office that question regarding calls there, the answer to how many who called the Governor’s office California’s Governor and Attorney General’s position on not challenging the Prop 8 ruling made by Judge Walker, the answer was one…one phone call.

Yee-ouch. Maybe we all need to make some calls too.
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  John Wright

Reflecting on HRC’s Religion & Faith Summer Institute

Historians will cite a few transformational gatherings as defining the shape and future of any given justice movement.  The Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 was such a gathering for women’s suffrage and we believe that HRC’s Summer Institute for Religious and Theological Study will create its own lasting impact on the future of religious studies. 

Under the searing heat of a Nashville summer in the last week of July, the Summer Institute brought together 14 graduate students from seminaries and universities around the country engaged in LGBTQ scholarship.  These students were taught and mentored by some of the most renowned scholars and religious opinion leaders in the country.  Along with their instructors and mentors, they bonded over the nexus of theology, religion and queer identities; they navigated collectively the pitfalls of an often harsh and unwelcoming profession; they even tackled media training; and through it all they came away envisioning a new framework for LGBTQ religious scholarship.

Theirs is a vision that begins with the premise that LGBTQ studies cannot succeed if it does not embrace the diversity of all of us in the LGBTQ and allied communities.  As one of the instructors, Dr. Rebecca Alpert points out in her powerful forthcoming essay for Religious Dispatches, these students created “a coalition on the axes of race and sexuality” that was nothing short of extraordinary.   The students, predominantly women and people of color, theorized the relationship between race and sexuality in ways that will have lasting influence on our understanding of LGBTQ studies and religion.  Our work in the Religion and Faith program was transformed by this gathering and we know our movement will be as well.  We could not be more proud of this gathering. 

Sharon Groves is deputy director, HRC Religion and Faith Program and convener for the first Summer Institute for HRC’s Scholarship and Mentorship Program for Religious and Theological Study.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  John Wright