Major League Baseball to ban anti-gay discrimination after letter from Resource Center

Rafael_McDonnell

Rafael McDonnell

Major League Baseball is set to ban anti-gay discrimination as part of a new collective bargaining agreement to be released today, following a request from Resource Center Dallas.

Last month, after the National Football League added sexual orientation to its nondiscrimination policy, Resource Center’s Rafael McDonnell penned a letter to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig calling for pro baseball to follow suit.

McDonnell received responses from both Selig and MLB Executive Vice President Robert Manfred Jr. (Read their letters here and here.)

“While it is my policy not to comment on matters currently on the table, I think it is safe to say the issue you have raised will be addressed in a positive way,” Manfred wrote to McDonnell on Nov. 3.

Today, the New York Daily News is reporting that the new MLB collective bargaining agreement — which is set to be released this afternoon — does in fact ban anti-gay discrimination. From the Daily News:

Major League Baseball, which saw Jackie Robinson break the color barrier in 1947, Tuesday will announce incremental progress in another civil rights issue. The new collective bargaining agreement adds “sexual orientation” to its section on discrimination, a person with direct knowledge of the agreement told the Daily News.

Article XV, Section A of the MLB’s expiring Basic Agreement, in effect from 2006-2011, states: “The provisions of this Agreement shall be applied to all Players covered by this Agreement without regard to race, color, religion or national origin.”

In the new agreement, which will be made public Tuesday afternoon, the words “sexual orientation” will be added to the equivalent section.

McDonnell has also written a letter to the National Basketball Association calling for the NBA to ban anti-gay discrimination, but he said he has yet to receive a response.

Major League Soccer added sexual orientation protections in 2004, while the National Hockey League did so in 2005.

—  John Wright

UPDATE: New York Assembly passes gay marriage bill — again

As David Taffet noted here earlier today, New York’s Senate appears to be one vote shy of the number needed to pass a bill legalizing same-sex marriage in the state. But the New York Daily News is reporting that the state’s Assembly has voted again to approve the legislation.

The Assembly has voted three times before to legalize gay marriage. In today’s vote, the measure passed 80-63, the lowest margin by which it has passed since it was first approved in 2007.

 

—  admin

Gay co-producer of ‘Narnia’ films dies at 39

Perry Moore

Associated Press

NEW YORK — Perry Moore, a co-producer of The Chronicles of Narnia film series and the author of an award-winning novel about a gay teenager with superpowers, was found unconscious in his bathroom and died later at a hospital, police said. He was 39.

His father, Bill Moore, told The New York Daily News newspaper in Saturday editions that an initial autopsy was inconclusive. “I have no clue what happened. The examiner said he was in good condition,” Bill Moore said. His father and friends said he suffered from chronic back pain.

Moore was found unconscious in the bathroom of his Manhattan home Thursday, and doctors couldn’t save his life, police said. The cause of death will be determined by the city’s medical examiner, but no foul play was suspected.

Moore had a varied career in television and in film, as producer, screenwriter and director. His 2007 novel, Hero, won the Lambda Literary Award for best novel for young gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender children or adults.

Moore, who was gay, said in an interview on his website that in writing the novel, he had wanted to tell the story of his father, a Vietnam veteran, “and his son.”

“Like most young people, I grew up feeling alienated and different — for very specific reasons in my case — in a place that didn’t value differences,” he said. “I also have this borderline-crazy belief in the power of literature to change the universe. So I’d always wanted to tell this story.”

Moore was an executive producer on all three hugely successful Narnia films, and authored a best-selling illustrated book for the first film, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. He directed a 2008 drama with Sissy Spacek called Lake City and co-directed a documentary about children’s book author Maurice Sendak with Hunter Hill and Spike Jonze. He scored a “Sexy Man of the Week” rating by People Magazine in 2007.

But it was his novel about a super-powered teenager that seemed to focus his passions. With Hero, he said he hoped to create a gay superhero who was not, he said, a supporting character, victim or token. “I decided I would write the definitive coming-of-age story of the world’s first gay teen superhero,” he said.

It was the death of one of the first prominent gay heroes in the Marvel Comics universe, Northstar, at the hands of X-Men‘s Wolverine, that spurred him to finish the book. He slaughtered the X-Men‘s token gay hero,” Moore said. “I found this story be disturbing, to say the least.”

—  John Wright