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Friday, July 23, 2010

Sonoma County Settles Law Suit With Elderly Gay Man

This past April I blogged about a lawsuit in Sonoma County where an elderly gay man, Clay Greene was prevented from visiting his partner of 20 years, Harold Scull, as he lay dying in a hospital bed.

The lawsuit stated that officials had denied visitation and ignored signed wills, medical declarations and powers of attorney, naming each as the other's spouse.

Today it was announced that the Sonoma County has decided to settle out of court, just days before the trial was set to begin. They have agreed to pay Clay and Harold’s estate $600,000, and the defendant, Agua Caliente Villa, has agreed to pay an additional $53,000.

The county's lawyer, Gregory Spaulding, maintained there was never any discrimination but admitted the county made some mistakes. The law allows for the sale of property worth $5,000 or less to cover the cost of care. But Greene and Scull's property fetched more than $25,000 at auction.

In addition to paying out a substantial sum, as a result of Clay and Harold’s lawsuit, the County has changed or modified many important policies in its Office of Public Guardian, including requiring employees to follow protocols before seizing private property, preventing employees from relocating elders or others against their will, and prohibiting employees from backdating information in their guardianship databases.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

New Lesbian Flick: The Kids Are All Right

From the 2010 Sundance film festival comes a new lesbian move which has just hit the big screen, The Kids Are All Right. It is the newest comedy from acclaimed director Lisa Cholodenko (High Art and Laural Canyon) staring Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, and Mark Ruffalo. The plot is that two teenagers, Mia Wasikowska and Josh Hutcherson, get the crazy idea to seek out their biological father and have him join their family, which presently consists of the 2 teenagers and their lesbian moms (Bening and Moore). But, of course, things don't work out exactly as the kids had planned.

I haven't seen it yet, but the trailer looks pretty good, check it out...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Washington DC Court Rules Against Foes of Marriage Equality

HRC just announced a big victory for marriage equality in DC. Today the DC Court of Appeals ruled against foes of DC marriage equality who had wanted to put an initiative on the ballot to invalidate same-sex marriages entered into in the District.

Click here to read the whole story.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Melissa Etheridge's Ex Takes Her to Court

Tammy Lynn Michaels has accused her ex-wife, Melissa Etheridge, of not paying enough money each month for her to afford necessities for herself and their two children.

Michaels was requesting that Etheridge pay her $25,000, on top of another $25,000 for legal fees.

Neal Hersh, attorney for Etheridge, proved she was giving Michaels $2,000 a month for bills, housing, food and care for their three-year-old twins.

Hersh stated that, "Tammy is being completely supported by Melissa and has been since they separated. She's being well-provided for and then some, as are the children, which are Melissa's first priority."

Los Angeles County Superior Court judge has turned down Michael's demands for more money after ruling that Etheridge is already paying for her expenses.

Another hearing between the couple is scheduled in September.

Along with more money, Michaels is seeking full legal and physical custody of their two children, Miller and Johnnie. Etheridge is seeking joint custody.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Today Show's Marriage Contest To Allow Same-Sex Couples

After a meeting with the GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), NBC announced that they would allow same-sex couples to participate in the Today show's wedding contest and have extended the deadline for contest entries to Monday, July 12, 2010.

Originally the Today show had argued that it couldn’t include same-sex couples because gay marriage is not permitted under New York law, where the Rockefeller Center wedding is set to take place. “Our intent was not to be discriminatory or exclusive. Moving forward, we ensure that our future wedding contests will be inclusive of all couples.”

The contest, now in it's eleventh year, allows viewers to vote on every detail of a couple’s wedding, which is then broadcast live on the show. Even though same-sex couples will be allowed to apply, it does not guarantee they will be on the show. The Today show producers sort through all the contest applications and pick four couples, then it is up to the viewers to vote for which couple will win the wedding and the all-expenses-paid honeymoon. The winning couple's ceremony will take place on the Today show in New York in October.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lilith Fair 2010: My Experience

If you haven't heard of the Lilith Fair, here is a quick "Reader's Digest" version to catch you up...

Lilith Fair is a traveling music festival that was founded by Canadian musician Sarah McLachlan and originally took place during the summers of 97, 98 & 99. It consisted entirely of female solo artists and female-led bands. In its 3 years, it attracted over 1.5 million fans and raised over $10M for women's charities throughout North America.

After a ten year break, the ladies of Lilith are back on the bus, once again led by founder Sarah McLachlan and 90's Lilth tour regular, Sheryl Crow. And although I never had the opportunity to attend the original Lilith Fair in the 90's, I was lucky enough to attend this year's Lilith Fair last weekend at the Shoreline amphitheater in Mountain View, CA. And let me say, it was an AMAZING event... and that's not just because I had third row seats, although I am sure that didn't hurt.

The event was set up with 3 smaller stages outside of the main stage, each with different bands playing at different times throughout the afternoon until 5:50 when the main stage was set for the larger acts to begin.

If you do have the change to catch the Lilith Fair this summer, I highly recommend it. Other then the amazing bands, the crowd was mostly women with a large percentage of them being lesbian...always a bonus!

Here are a few images I took last weekend, I hope you enjoy them.

In order from top to bottom: Marie Digby, Susan Justice, A Fine Frenzy, Colbie Caillat, The Bangles, Miranda Lambert, Heart & Sarah McLachlan

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Google Offers Compensation to Gay & Lesbian Employees

Joining a fledgling group of companies trying to address the disparity in how workplace health benefits for same-sex and heterosexual married couples are taxed, Google said Thursday it would compensate its gay and lesbian employees for the extra money they currently must pay the federal government each year.

Click here to read the full article from the Mercury News.


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