TV & Radio
ロバーツ氏の公聴会延期 長官葬儀やハリケーンで (共同 2005/09/06)
Gays Live a Difficult Life under Social Bias
2005-09-06 09:18:59 CRIENGLISH.com
Gu Du was the victim of extortion. He was blackmailed, as well as being chastised by his employer and almost fired.
The reason: Gu is gay.
Gu worked in machine design for a Chengdu company. His father used to be head of this State-owned enterprise and his mother works in the trade union of the same company. He shared a company dormitory room with a few co-workers and surfed the Internet on his own computer after work.
One night about six months ago, he was spotted browsing a gay website by his roommate co-worker. Confronted by him, he initially denied he was gay. But his roommate knew better.
The roommate offered him a choice: Gu could pay him 5,000 yuan (US$616) in hush money or he would tell the boss.
Gu was agitated, but thought the man was bluffing. A few days later, he was called to see the head of the company.
"I heard you have been engaged in hooliganism," said the boss, using a term that covers conduct as severe as rape and as light as saying four-letter words, or "shua liu mang" in Chinese.
Gu denied doing anything wrong, but upon interrogation he admitted he was a homosexual and had been leafing through a few gay-themed websites in his spare time. He said he did not look at porno sites, however.
But his boss was not interested in such technicalities. He threatened to slap him with some kind of penalty.
Before that materialized, Gu was faced with the biggest penalty he could imagine: the incident was reported to his parents.
His father was so furious he disowned the son. "I wish I'd never had you as my son," he yelled.
The news struck Gu Du's mother as a bolt of lightning from the sky. She fell sick and had to be hospitalized. His brother and sister refused to talk to him any more, saying they were "ashamed of having a sibling who's abnormal."
In despair, Gu Du thought of killing himself. "I couldn't go to work again. Even though they didn't fire me, I had to suffer the looks from all my colleagues," he told China Daily.
He ended up leaving Chengdu for Hangzhou, a city where he didn't know anyone and nobody knew he was gay.
Last November, government agencies published a report that put the number of gay men in China who are "of a sexually active age" at 5-10 million. Scientists say this is the low end of the estimate. They figure that there are around 30-40 million homosexual men and women in total.
In 1997, China's Criminal Law decriminalized sodomy. In 2001, homosexuality was removed from the list of mental disorders by health authorities.
But the changing law does not necessarily change public perception. Most gay people interviewed for this story agree that the single biggest source of pressure and stigma comes from their own families. "My employer doesn't care about my private life, and the neighbourhood grandma is not nosy any more. But there's no way I can get past my own mum and dad," said Lu Youni, a Guangzhou high school teacher.
Most parents cannot imagine in their wildest dreams that their children could be gay. They usually do not pick up the subtle signals that hint that their kids may be attracted to those of their own sex. When revelation dawns, it is normally such a shock that it feels like falling into a vortex of tongue-tied humiliation.
"They'd rather I became paralyzed, so that they could give me unconditional love and sympathy. If I became an alien, at least they would be curious about me," said Gu Du.
Unlike Gu, a few people take the calculated step of "coming out" to their parents. Fei Xue, a Jiangsu man who works in a local tax agency, had maintained a very close relationship with his father, who is a medical expert. Believing he was in a better position than most gay men whose parents are "less educated about these things," Fei showed his diary to his father, in which he detailed his emotional life. Father thumbed through each page, and then left his room quietly.
The next day, his father told him to cut off all connections with his gay friends and forbade him to leave his hometown for work elsewhere. "Now I advise others to be extremely cautious before they come out," he sighed.
There are occasional reports of parents who acquiesce or look the other way. Some are well - informed enough to know that their gay children do not have any "disease," they are just different from the majority. Others can accept it as long as their gay children are happy. But insiders suggest that these "Wedding Banquet" scenarios are few and far between.
The pitfall of marriage
The film "Wedding Banquet," directed by Ang Lee, portrays a gay son who is coerced into marriage. This is the fate of 80-90 per cent of gays in China, according to research.
Traditionally, the Chinese did not frown upon homosexuality as much as those in Christian countries in the West. In some dynasties such as Han, it was viewed almost as a "chic lifestyle." On the other hand, the Chinese place a tremendous emphasis on "carrying on the family line." If a man remains unmarried at the age of 30, his parents fret and nag and devote a significant amount of time to finding a spouse for him.
"What can I do? If I don't marry, I will break my parents' hearts. If I do marry, I'll ruin the life of an innocent girl," lamented Lu Youni, the Guangzhou teacher, who was, in the end, dragged into matrimony.
Some men search for lesbians in order to feign marriages that can be mutually beneficial. But since finding a lesbian is much harder than finding a gay man in China, most settle into a "marriage of convenience" in which the other party is kept in the dark. Many also want to believe that they can change their sexual orientation if they try hard enough.
These marriages invariably end in tragedy. However, they do take off much of the pressure from the family. Parents tend to believe that gay children do not remarry because they are heart-broken from their failed marriage, and if the marriage results in offspring, so much the better.
However, more and more young people oppose these arrangements on moral grounds. Unless their spouses know the situation when tying the conjugal knot, it is unethical to involve them in these cover-up schemes, they insist.
The more imminent danger is not moral, but physiological. Gay men who lead double lives are far more likely to spread the HIV virus to their families and to the heterosexual community, doctors maintain.
"Discrimination has made life difficult for gays in China," said Cai Yumao, a medical expert in Shenzhen involved in the Rainbow Work Team, a community outreach programme that helps gays on health matters. "Because they cannot lead a normal sexual life, some of them are tempted to live on the edge and take risks when it comes to sexual practices."
Cai did not deny that gays also have responsibilities and should refrain from unsafe practices no matter what. But he cautioned against the fallacy that homosexuality somehow equals AIDS or sexual diseases. "Metaphorically brushing homosexuals under the rug or throwing mud at them won't solve the problem. Rather, it will exacerbate the problem," he warned.
Another hazard of shaming gays back into the closet is the emergence of "gay for pay", or "money boys" who are not really gay but offer sexual services for money and are often involved in extortion schemes. These people take advantage of gay people's fears that their true identity will be uncovered. As a consequence, robberies and even murders have been reported.
According to Zhang Beichuan, a Qingdao-based expert on the issue, 38 per cent of gays have been hurt because of their sexual encounters; 21.3 per cent have been hurt by straight lovers and 21 per cent have been victimized when their identity was exposed, suffering insults, beatings or blackmail.
For all the negative news, life for gays in China has improved on the whole. The Internet plays a big part. Gays used to believe they were the only ones in the world who were different, and now they can turn to online communities for help, to socialize, and date. Many love stories have been posted on the net, and many people find that homosexual love can be just as romantic, passionate or heart-breaking as a heterosexual affair.
Gay bars have sprung up all over the metropolitan landscape. Here people can mingle in a normal setting, away from sleazy bathrooms and dirty public toilets where they are putting their health at risk. But "money boys" often mar the scene instead.
Most encouraging are the hotlines and health centres that have cropped up in cities like Shenzhen, Chongqing and Hangzhou. Homosexuals can consult specialists for psychological and medical help. Tests for HIV and venereal diseases are offered free, with guaranteed anonymity.
Meanwhile, Gu Du has not given up hope of his parents' acceptance. But each time he calls them, they hang up.
He should probably send them a book by Li Yinhe, China's top expert on homosexuality, or words by Wang Xiaobo, Li's late husband who was himself a renowned social commentator: "Any sexual relationship that is long-term, stable and built on love should be respected. Gays should take a positive attitude towards life."
Source: China Daily
Schwarzenegger Mum Ahead Of Gay Marriage Vote
by Mark Worrall 365Gay.com San Francisco Bureau
Posted: September 5, 2005 5:00 pm ET
(San Francisco, California) California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is refusing to tip his hand ahead of Tuesday's landmark vote in the Assembly on legislation that would allow same-sex couples to marry.
The Senate passed the bill on a 21 to 15 vote last Thursday. (story)
The measure failed by four votes in the Assembly earlier this year when a quarter of the Democrats voted with Republicans to reject it and a handful abstained from voting. (story)
This time, Equality California, the state's largest LGBT rights group, believes it has the votes to pass the bill. The organization has been focusing its lobbying effort on the four assemblymembers who abstained.
Called the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act, the bill would require local clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples but allow people opposed to gay marriage to refuse to conduct weddings.
If the bill makes it through the Assembly, California would be the first state to pass gay marriage equality legislation. In Massachusetts, the only state where same-sex marriage currently is legal, it was the state Supreme Court that made the decision.
Whether Schwarzenegger will sign it into law is another matter.
Unlike his counterpart in Massachusetts, Mitt Romney, who has pushed for a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, Schwarzenegger has sent mixed signals.
In a January meeting with the editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle Schwarzenegger suggested that this may not be the best time to push gay marriage, saying that a legislative push to fully recognize marriage rights for gays might backfire.
"Eventually in a few years from now, you can readdress it again and see what the people of California think,'' he told the paper. "You cannot force-feed those kind of things.''
Last year in a Tonight Show appearance Schwarzenegger said gay marriage would be "fine with me" if it were enshrined in state law or ruled legal by the courts. (story)
The issue of same-sex marriage also is slowly heading toward the California Supreme Court. Last month a San San Francisco judge ruled that state laws preventing gay marriage are illegal. (story)
Meanwhile, a conservative group called the "Voters' Right to Protect Marriage Initiative" has begun collecting signatures to have a proposed amendment to the California Constitution banning same-sex marriage placed on the 2006 ballot. (story) If approved by voters it would not only bar gays and lesbians from marrying but also void the state's landmark domestic partner law.
A new poll, released on the weekend, shows that California voters are equally divided on the issue of same-sex marriage. The Public Policy Institute poll shows that 46 percent are in favor of allowing same-sex couples to marry and 46 percent are opposed.
The result is a slight increase in the number supporting gay marriage over the last poll on the issue, but has given Equality California reason to believe that if the proposed amendment makes it to voters a majority would reject it.
"This poll reflects the tremendous education Californians have received by knowing our families who live their lives, raise children, and contribute to their communities despite the stigma of discrimination," said Equality California Executive Director Geoffrey Kors in a statement.
"It is heartening to see solid movement in the direction of equality and away from discrimination."
The Washington Post
A Nominee for Chief
Tuesday, September 6, 2005; A24
PRESIDENT BUSH lost no time in naming a successor for Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist. If confirmed, Judge John G. Roberts Jr. will bring the same virtues to the job of heading the country's judiciary as he would have brought to the job of associate justice. A highly regarded former appellate lawyer and current appeals court judge, he is a modest, smart lawyer who, unlike some of the president's judicial picks, is generally well regarded across party lines. Mr. Bush deserves credit for acting with dispatch. The Senate should do so as well and, giving a full airing to the issues, should make a point of voting on the nomination before the court reconvenes in October.
In most respects, the change in position ought to signify little in terms of how senators regard Judge Roberts. The difference between the chief justice and the other members of the court, after all, is largely administrative, not substantive; all justices have only one vote. Judge Roberts is, to be sure, on the young side for the job of chief. At 50, he will have, if confirmed, the odd distinction of being the youngest member of the court he heads. On the other hand, his easy manner and collegiality ought to serve him well.
Yet his nomination as chief justice nonetheless raises the stakes in the discussion of what Judge Roberts actually believes -- a subject about which a great deal more has been said than is really known. Liberal groups that feared what a Justice Roberts might do can only fear a Chief Justice Roberts all the more. The hearings will provide an excellent opportunity for the Senate Judiciary Committee to explore -- and for Judge Roberts to address -- a raft of important questions: What is his attitude toward what is called stare decisis , the doctrine of generally letting past cases stand even if wrongly decided? How does he regard the balance of power between the federal government and the states, an ongoing debate in which a new justice could play a dramatic role, either constructive or unfortunate. What does he believe about privacy rights?
Documents from Judge Roberts's service in the Reagan administration -- in the Justice Department and in the White House counsel's office -- have raised fears that he might harbor reactionary views on a range of civil rights questions. Some of this is overblown; opponents have tried to make controversy out of reasonable positions Mr. Roberts took against policies few still advocate today. On the other hand, Judge Roberts opposed changes to the Voting Rights Act that had broad bipartisan support, as well as affirmative action programs and the proposed Equal Rights Amendment. He seemed deeply suspicious of federal review of state convictions. He seems to have objected to decades of Supreme Court rulings restricting the role of religion in public life. Judge Roberts was quite young when these memorandums were drafted, and his views may have evolved as he matured. Which part of this record as a young lawyer does he stand behind now, and which part does he not? All of these questions take on a greater sense of importance -- at least symbolically -- with Judge Roberts now nominated to be chief.
In one critical respect, however, moving Judge Roberts to the chief's slot may actually reduce his impact on the court's ideological balance. Chief Justice Rehnquist, unlike Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, was not often a swing vote on the court. In replacing him, Judge Roberts will be very unlikely to move the court substantially to the right. He would not have to prove all that surprising to move it to the left on certain issues.
This fact, in turn, puts a heavy premium on Mr. Bush's choice regarding a new replacement for Justice O'Connor -- whose decision to stay on the court until a nominee garners confirmation is proving invaluable at a delicate transitional moment. Before nominating Judge Roberts, Mr. Bush consulted widely and emerged with a candidate Senate Democrats have -- by and large, anyway -- treated with respect. As he once again considers a nominee to replace Justice O'Connor, Mr. Bush would do a public service by consulting widely and meaningfully.
The New York Times
September 6, 2005
John Roberts's Rapid Ascension
President Bush surprised many with his swift decision to nominate Judge John Roberts Jr. to be the next chief justice of the United States. If Mr. Bush thought Mr. Roberts had already impressed both the public and the Senate with his intelligence and sincerity, he figured correctly. But if he regards the judge as a known commodity whose confirmation should be a shoo-in, he is wrong. The Senate did not have enough information to make an informed judgment about Mr. Roberts when he was the nominee for just one of the nine seats on the court. Now it simply becomes more important than ever that he be questioned thoroughly about his views.
Besides his long and stellar résumé, Mr. Roberts, who was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit less than two and a half years ago, has an extremely short and thin record of actual decisions. Those two attributes may be equally desirable for a Supreme Court nominee these days. The résumé attests to his right to be considered, and the lack of a real judicial record makes it hard for potential critics to guess how he might rule on controversial issues.
Like the president, this page worries about activist judges who might use the Constitution as a cloak for their desires to remake society in the mold of their own political preferences. Unlike Mr. Bush, we believe the record now shows that most of those jurists are conservatives, who strike down laws that do not fit their political philosophies or their extremely narrow view of governmental power.
The Senate has a duty to find out whether Judge Roberts has that kind of mind-set. There are troubling hints that he may. If the coming confirmation hearings were important before, they now become crucial. The chief justice is in many ways positioned to have more long-term influence over the nation than any other person. Given a lifetime appointment, Mr. Roberts, 50, could lead the court through the administrations of a half-dozen presidents.
The Bush administration could make the Senate's job easier by handing over all the documents Mr. Roberts prepared when he worked for the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. And when Judge Roberts is questioned at his confirmation hearing, he should speak candidly and at some length about his views on important legal issues and precedents. The president could also help by giving the country a fuller idea of how he intends to shape the court. Some Democrats have urged that he make his second nomination, for the seat occupied by Sandra Day O'Connor, before the Senate takes up Judge Roberts's nomination. That seems reasonable. Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who died on Saturday, was a very conservative jurist, and from what we know about Judge Roberts, it is clear that President Bush has nominated a very conservative man to take his place. It is also important to know the president's plans for filling the seat held by the more moderate Justice O'Connor.
Posted 9/5/2005 9:41 PM
How would Roberts, as chief justice, affect you?
By all accounts, John Roberts is the kind of guy you might want your daughter to bring home for dinner: brilliant, personable, possibly destined for greatness. Even the sternest father — if he's not too liberal — would probably grant nodding approval, as the Senate is likely to do in the next few weeks, seating Roberts on the Supreme Court.
The positive reaction to Roberts since President Bush first nominated him to the court in July undoubtedly contributed to Bush's decision to choose him Monday to succeed William H. Rehnquist, who died Saturday after nearly 19 years as chief justice.
But as impressive as Roberts has appeared, the most important question about him remains largely unanswered: How would a Chief Justice Roberts affect the country? As the youngest chief justice since 1801, Roberts, 50, would be a potent influence on society for a generation or more.
Would he, for instance, vote to reverse existing law on abortion or, more sweepingly, the right to privacy? His record suggests he might. Would he limit Congress' ability to protect the environment, public health and civil rights? That, too, is open to question.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will plumb for answers in hearings that may begin as early as Thursday, and it needn't linger long on basics. Roberts easily surpasses the threshold qualifications for justices.
By all accounts, he is a brilliant lawyer with a forceful intellect suited to the court. The American Bar Association calls him "well qualified."
Politically, he's conservative but not an outspoken ideologue, with little history of brash pronouncements. But which of the several sharply opposed conservative camps he falls into is in doubt, and the difference stands to affect every American.
Roberts' public record — inconclusive but provocative — raises questions whether he prefers limited government and cautious change, or whether he is an activist who would seek to overturn important Supreme Court precedents and legal protections:
Right to privacy. In memos written when he was in the Reagan administration, he disparaged the notion that there is a constitutional right to privacy. He wrote approvingly of the dissent in the landmark 1965 case that firmly established that right and overturned state laws against birth control. Reversing that decision would reopen the door to government meddling in the most private aspects of life, again criminalizing abortion, gay sex, even contraception.
Abortion. As deputy solicitor general for the first President Bush, he signed a government brief urging reversal of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that state laws banning abortion were unconstitutional. The court has since reaffirmed that decision.
Civil rights. Roberts argued for standards that would make it easier for school districts to evade desegregation orders. He also disparaged affirmative action — still sanctioned by the court in some circumstances — as "recruiting of inadequately prepared candidates" and argued that it is unconstitutional. That record raises questions about whether he would restrain the ability of Congress to help those victimized by discrimination.
Powers of Congress. Roberts parted company with the majority of conservative judges on his appeals court two years ago to take a swipe at the constitutional basis of the Endangered Species Act. The narrower interpretation he seemed to suggest could also limit the reach of federal laws regulating health, safety, civil rights, commerce and the workplace.
Freedom of speech. He argued that a federal law prohibiting flag burning did not violate the First Amendment, even after the Supreme Court had already declared a nearly identical state law unconstitutional.
Freedom of the press. Roberts wrote a memo challenging the 1964 Supreme Court decision New YorkTimes v. Sullivan, a cornerstone of the freedom to report aggressively on public officials. He suggested reverting to an earlier standard that gave officeholders greater ability to prevail in libel suits.
Church-state entanglement. He argued for lowering the wall between church and state and allowing officially led prayers at public school graduations. He criticized the Supreme Court's decision in another school prayer case as "indefensible."
Women's rights. Roberts ridiculed the notion that women are subject to workplace discrimination or entitled to constitutional protection. He also argued for narrowing the government's ability to enforce the ban on gender discrimination in education.
Roberts' defenders point out that most of his statements challenging the legal status quo were made while representing either the interests of a private client or the political commitments of an earlier administration. They might not represent his personal views — and many are more than 20 years old.
Both assertions are accurate. Less defensible is that the Bush administration has spurned Senate requests for records later in Roberts career. Senate questioning will have to fill in those blanks.
Much will be made at the hearings of the doctrine that Roberts should not be asked to say how he might rule in cases coming before the Supreme Court. But that should not deter senators from demanding to know how he views issues more generally and cases already decided — and the standards he would use to overturn settled law.
To suggest that the Senate should simply ignore the impact Roberts would have on constituents is to suggest that it stick its collective head in the sand.
From Buffalo to Washington
1955-72: Born in Buffalo, N.Y.; grew up in Long Beach, Ind., son of steel-mill executive; attended Roman Catholic prep school.
1976-79: Graduated from Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
1980: Appointed clerk to Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist, who became chief justice in 1986 and who died Saturday.
1981: Joined the Reagan administration's legal staff.
1986: Joined Washington law firm Hogan & Hartson.
1989: Joined George H.W. Bush administration as principal deputy solicitor general.
1993: Returned to private practice with Hogan & Hartson.
2003: Named to U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
2005: Nominated in July to succeed Justice Sandra Day O'Connor on the Supreme Court; nominated Monday to succeed Rehnquist.
Posted on Mon, Sep. 05, 2005
Success seen in bid to ban sexual-orientation bias
By Joseph A. Slobodzian
Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer
It's been a rough 12 months for many in the gay community after last year's national elections, in which some politicians used same-sex marriage as a polarizing - and sometimes effective - campaign tactic.
So Malcolm Lazin, executive director of the Equality Forum, the Philadelphia-based advocacy group for sexual minorities, often takes his victories where he finds them. And this Labor Day, Lazin says, there are reasons for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender workers to celebrate.
After just two years, the Equality Forum and several companion groups have obtained commitments from 92 percent of the Fortune 500 companies - or 460 of the 500 companies - that their corporate policies prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation.
Gains in the last two years mean an additional 10 million U.S. workers - and the sexual minorities among them - are now governed by policies barring sexual-orientation bias.
Many people do not realize that sexual orientation has never been added to civil-rights laws prohibiting employment discrimination. The courts have thus far declined to infer that Congress intended to bar sexual-orientation discrimination, and these days amending the law is not anywhere near the top of Congress' agenda.
Sixteen states have laws prohibiting sexual-orientation discrimination in the workplace. New Jersey prohibits such discrimination for both public and private employees. Pennsylvania and Delaware protect only public workers.
Dan Miller, 49, a Harrisburg accountant, learned that the hard way in 1990 when he was fired from a private firm after being seen on television as a spokesman at a gay civil-rights event.
Not only did Miller have no ability to sue - his boss said he was fired because he had publicly acknowledged his homosexuality - but Miller himself was sued for opening his own firm.
Miller wound up paying a $153,400 jury award to his former boss for violating a broad "no-compete clause" in his contract, an award affirmed through the U.S. Supreme Court.
"I was very naive," said Miller, who has his own accounting firm in Harrisburg and this year was nominated by both parties for a seat on Harrisburg City Council. He will run as each party's candidate in November.
Lazin said he hoped the Equality Forum's Fortune 500 Project helped to end the legislative inertia.
"Congress clearly is not in the lead on this issue, although public-opinion polls show that 77 [percent] to 88 percent of the American people support laws barring workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation," Lazin said. "Now we have 92 percent of the Fortune 500 companies saying they believe it's a good business practice."
When the Equality Forum first contacted the 500 largest U.S. companies on Fortune magazine's list, in 2003, Lazin said it found that 323, or 65 percent, already prohibited sexual-orientation discrimination.
Within six months, 78 percent of the Fortune 500 were on board, Lazin said, and by last Labor Day, the number had crept up to 80 percent.
Of those companies that do not prohibit sexual-orientation discrimination, Lazin said, the greatest percentage is in Texas (11 of 48 Fortune 500 companies).
All 27 Fortune 500 companies in Pennsylvania include sexual orientation in antidiscrimination policies, as do all 24 in New Jersey and both in Delaware.
Lazin attributes much of this year's increase in "compliant companies" to a collaboration the Equality Forum began in June with two nationally known corporate-management experts: Louis Thomas, a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and Ian Ayres, William K. Townsend Professor at Yale University Law School.
They had research showing that a corporate policy banning sexual-orientation bias was good for business - and shareholders.
And they came equipped with graduate students who researched the Fortune 500 holdouts to learn who were the best company officials to contact on the issue.
"Clearly, we reached the right people," Penn's Thomas said.
In a few cases, Lazin said, the Equality Forum got more than it asked for. When officials of Philadelphia-based Aramark Corp. called last year, Lazin said, they told him they had adopted the policy and would begin offering domestic-partner benefits.
About half of the Fortune 500 companies offer such benefits, Lazin said.
Thomas said his research showed that gays and lesbians are happier and more productive in the workplace when they are sure that knowledge of their sexual orientation will not hurt their careers.
And in a tight market, Thomas said, such a policy can reduce a company's recruitment costs.
"I think we were able to prove this was not a form of corporate largesse but an issue in the best interests of the shareholders," Thomas said, adding, "You can't afford to have high-quality senior employees leave over this."
Lazin said the Equality Forum had not given up on the final 40 on the Fortune 500 list. Among the research conducted by Thomas, Ayres and students were corporate and shareholder rules for submitting proxy statements to shareholders at the companies' annual meetings.
Lazin said the forum had already contacted the 25 largest institutional investors, mutual funds, investment managers, university endowments and pension funds to support proxy statements requesting sexual-orientation protection.
Thomas said the proxy statements would at least force corporate officials to address the issue.
And Thomas said he thought the Equality Forum's publishing of the list of "compliant" and "noncompliant" companies on its Web site - www.equalityforum.com/
fortune500/ - "will make the task of saying 'no' more difficult. It's like peer pressure: Why am I not doing this when my own competitors are?"
No Protections For Gay Workers
Only 40 companies in the Fortune 500 do not include "sexual orientation" in their employee nondiscrimination policies. Among them are:
• Advance Auto Parts
• AK Steel Holding Corp.
• Anadarko Petroleum Corp.
• Collins & Aikman Corp.
• Cooper Tire & Rubber Co.
• EchoStar Communications Corp.
• Eastman Chemical Co.
• Exxon Mobil Corp.
• Family Dollar Stores Inc.
• Halliburton Co.
• Kerr-McGee Corp.
• Liberty Media Corp.
• Liberty Mutual Insurance
• Micron Technology Inc.
• Pilgrim's Pride Corp.
• Wendy's Int'l Inc.
• Yellow Roadway Corp.
Contact staff writer Joseph A. Slobodzian at 215-854-2985 or email@example.com.
Heroes and Villains: Kanako Otsuji
29 August 2005 - Rainbow Network
We take a look at some of the heroes and villains of the gay world. This week a Japanese politician who shocked her colleagues - and risked career suicide - by coming out at a local Pride event.
Not to be confused with…
Jenny Shimizu, the Japanese-American model who's dated everyone from Madonna to Rebecca Loos.
Best remembered for…
Coming out. Otsuji is a member of the Osaka Prefectural Assembly. At Tokyo's recent Lesbian and Gay Pride she announced to reporters that she is a lesbian. Otsuji, who became an Assembly member in 2003, explained that she had not previously said anything about her sexuality because she was afraid that voters would not support her. Her prefecture has a population of 8.84 million, the largest after Tokyo, and she is still a junior politician, in her first four-year term.
What's she up to now?
Fighting off nosey reporters, no doubt.
Couldn't be higher.
Anything else we should know?
If you think it's hard to come out in the West, it's nothing compared to the pressures facing lesbians in Japan. It is extremely rare for a Japanese politician to come out, especially a woman coming out as a lesbian.
Otsuji said: "Homosexual people have often kept silent for fear of discrimination and prejudice. By declaring I'm homosexual, I would like to highlight the problems and put an end to a vicious circle of discrimination and prejudice."
In addition to her statement, Otsuji has written an autobiography about her experiences as a lesbian.
Hero or villain?
A true heroine, of course!
By: Charlotte Cooper
Last Updated: Monday, 5 September 2005, 16:13 GMT 17:13 UK
Transsexual and family attacked - BBC
(Photo)James Harries was on television as a ten-year-old antiques expert
A former child antiques expert who had gender realignment surgery to become a woman, was attacked in her home by a gang of youths, a court has heard.
Lauren Harries, from Rumney, rose to fame as 10-year-old antique expert James Harries, before she underwent a sex change operation in 2001.
A 17-year-old youth admitted head-butting Lauren's father when eight youths broke into the home in July, assaulting her and her family.
The teenager will be sentenced soon.
Cardiff Youth Court was told that the youth - who cannot be named for legal reasons - had been drinking when he and a jeering gang banged on the family's front door before carrying out an "absolutely hideous" attack.
They were shouting and swearing, the court heard and were heard to shout out the word "tranny" - a term of abuse associated with hate crime.
Lauren's 63-year-old father Mark Harries described the defendant as "like a violent bull" when he challenged him and the rest of the group.
(Photo) Lauren Harries and her brother, Adam, were attacked at home
After head-butting Mr Harries, magistrates were told that the 17-year-old tried to kick him as he lay on the ground and then attacked his son, Adam Harries.
Lauren Harries was also beaten in the attack. None of the other attackers have been traced.
Leanne Jonathan, prosecuting, told the court how the Harries family had suffered for Lauren's "notoriety" after winning national fame in the 1980s and 1990s as the child antiques expert, James Harries.
She said: "The Harries family are well known in the area and indeed the country. Lauren has achieved a certain notoriety.
"She was born James Harries but she underwent gender realignment surgery and the family has received a good deal of nuisance in the area."
Stephen Jones, defending, said that his client did not know the family and had been drinking with friends when one of the group decided to bang on the family's front door.
He said: "There is no question that other people used the words, "tranny" but my client never used those words. It is a quantum leap to say this is a hate crime."
The youth pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm on Mark Harris and actual bodily harm Adam Harries, and throwing a brick through the window of the family car.
Magistrate David Ford described the crime as "absolutely hideous" and adjourned the case for two weeks to consider whether to impose an order which would require the defendant to be tagged.
WIN WIN ニュースレター No.70/2005.09.04
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