California Gov. Gray Davis, as expected, signed into law California's extensive domestic-partner's bill, according to the Chronicle. Davis' commitment to the bill was voiced before he was thrust into his current situation of potentially being recalled. The law, which gives many of the rights and responsibilities of marriage, goes into effect in 2005—giving time for currently registered domestic partners to opt out if they believe they cannot live up to the new responsibilities of legal domestic partners. Davis does not support gay marriage, which was prohibited by voter action.
An Ohio man served four months in jail for a law that did not exist, reports the Gay People's Chronicle. Keith Phillips was arrested in December, 2002 for breaking Ohio's 'importuning' law. The law made same-sex propositions illegal if the person being propositioned could be offended. The law was struck down by the Ohio Supreme Court earlier in the year, but Phillips plead no contest and received a suspended sentence, paid a $600 fine and attended sex offender classes. In April, Phillips was arrested again on the same charges and spent four months in jail.
Meanwhile, the Ohio legislature is quickly pushing forward with a 'Super DOMA,' according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Hearings were held last week to explore the new bill that would outlaw all forms of same-sex domestic partnerships in Ohio. The hearings come to the state at the same time the state celebrated ratifying the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution—the equal protection and due process Amendment. Ohio was the only state not to have ratified the 1868 Amendment.
San Francisco is home to more queer eyes for straight guys. Jumping on the publicity bandwagon of the hit Bravo/NBC series, a group of entrepreneurs in San Francisco are now offering fashion, culture and design advice for straight men. Guerilla Makeovers provides several gay self-proclaimed fashion and culture elites to accompany straight guys in need of a new wardrobe, hair, and spa treatments. Clients leave with a new look and a notebook full of fashion tips.
A group of law schools is suing the Department of Defense (DOD) over coercive on-campus recruiting techniques, reports The New York Times. In the past, Harvard, Yale, Columbia and several other universities banned military recruiters on campus because of the military's discriminatory Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. The DOD advised the schools that they could lose federal funding if they refused military recruiters. The new lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of the Solomon amendment that passed in 1995. The law withholds federal monies from being disbursed by Departments of Defense, Transportation, Health and Human Services, and Education to schools who do not allow military recruiting on campus.
Miami-Dade County employees may soon have domestic partner benefits, reports the Sun-Sentinel. School employees and employees of Miami Beach already have the benefits, but Miami-Dade mayor Alex Penelas said it makes sense that the county join surrounding counties that provide similar benefits.
Our friends north of the border (the Wisconsin border) oppose gay marriage by a margin of 2-to-1, according to a study by the University of Wisconsin. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that 58% of respondents find homosexual activity 'basically wrong.' When it comes to civil unions, nearly half of the respondents supported that idea. A Defense of Marriage Act is currently under consideration in Wisconsin.
A former San Francisco health commissioner was jailed last Wednesday after being charged under the law making it a crime to intentionally infect someone with the HIV virus, reports the Chronicle. A grand jury found substantial evidence that Ronald Gene Hill, 46, engaged in a pattern of soliciting sex and telling partners he was not HIV positive. Assistant District Attorney Greg Barge said the law requires that the perpetrator knows he has HIV, fails to disclose his status, and intends to transmit the virus to others.