Presidential Proclamation: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, 2013

A Proclamation

From generation to generation, ordinary Americans have led a proud and inexorable march toward freedom, fairness, and full equality under the law not just for some, but for all. Ours is a heritage forged by those who organized, agitated, and advocated for change; who wielded love stronger than hate and hope more powerful than insult or injury; who fought to build for themselves and their families a Nation where no one is a second-class citizen, no one is denied basic rights, and all of us are free to live and love as we see fit.

California Gov. Jerry Brown declares June "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month"


Our nation was founded on the principle of equal rights for all people, but the fulfillment of this promise has been long in coming for many Americans. Some of the most inspiring moments in our history have arisen from the various civil rights movements that have brought one group after another from the margins to the mainstream of American society.

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COMMENTARY: Harvey Milk Day highlights LGBT issues

(This post originally appeared HERE in Assemblymember Toni Atkins newsletter.)

Harvey Milk Day is celebrated each year on May 22, the birthday of the slain gay civil rights leader. The day was established in 2009 by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and is recognized in California as a day of special significance for public schools.

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COMMENTARY: Republican Party stubbornly opposes same-sex marriage

The Republican National Committee has again aggressively affirmed its party’s permanent opposition to marriage equality. On Friday the RNC unanimously adopted a resolution declaring that mixed-gender marriage is holy, but same-gender marriage is un-holy. 100 percent of the Republican Congressional leadership – Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Virginia), House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-California), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) – and 98 percent of all other Republicans in Congress – oppose marriage equality.

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Ivan “Max” Flores Acosta, 26, of New York City is the poster boy for what’s wrong with immigration reform in the United States, particularly in how it pertains to the LGBT community.

Acosta is one of an estimated 1 million LGBT adult immigrants living in the U.S. and he is one of an estimated 333,000 LGBT adult immigrants who are undocumented; the figures are provided by the Human Rights Campaign. Many of these immigrants are natives of nations where gays are discriminated against, persecuted, or even imprisoned, tortured or killed by homophobic regimes.

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COMMENTARY: Building bridges in District 4

Editors note: Following Tuesday night's City of San Diego special election, Dwayne Crenshaw and Myrtle Cole - who are both vying for the District 4 city council seat - will advance to a run-off election, which will be scheduled within 49 days.

It’s no secret that I get excited about things and invest myself it something very much.

Most recently I have been working to help Dwayne Crenshaw win election to the open Fourth District City Council seat.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Dwayne Crenshaw responds to anti-gay "Voice & Viewpoint" editorial

Editor's note: Dwayne Crenshaw is a candidate for the City of San Diego District 4 City Council seat in the special election being held Tuesday, March 26. The letter below is Crenshaw's response to an editorial in "The San Diego Voice & Viewpoint," a local publication that reports "on news from an African-American perspective and African-American communities of San Diego County, from small church gatherings to major political campaigns." The portion of the editorial that discusses Crenshaw's candidacy is copied below, followed by Crenshaw's response.

COMMENTARY: Politicians seek to "double dip" at City Hall

City politicians already have voted themselves the richest pension benefits of any city employees, but under a new proposal by Mayor Bob Filner, city politicians will have even more to look forward to once they leave office.

Mayor Filner is asking the City Council to pass an extraordinary law this month to allow former city politicians to "Double Dip" by collecting full city pensions while being eligible to be rehired by the city with full salaries simultaneously.

Letter to the President: Please file amicus brief in Prop 8 case at Supreme Court

(Editor’s note: Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA), an openly gay Asian American from Riverside County, has sent this letter to President Barack Obama to encourage him to submit an amicus brief to support marriage equality in the Proposition 8 case that the U.S. Supreme Court will take up on March 26. Obama has until Thursday to file a “friend of the court” brief.)

Dear Mr. President:

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Secretary Napolitano: End sexual abuse of LGBT people

The National Center for Transgender Equality urges Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to strengthen the standards to end sexual abuse and violence in immigration detention facilities.

Those standards would have protected people like Juan, a gay man, who was detained by DHS where he was sexually assaulted by two other detainees.