While You Were Out

Yes, more has been happening in the world than the Iowa caucuses. (Am I the only one bored out of my mind by horse-race coverage? Do we really have ten months to go?) Some other recent news includes:

  • Spain's same-sex-marriage law makes politicians proud:

Newly departed Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero says that the ruling he’s most proud of from his nearly eight years in office is the passage of full marriage rights for his gay and lesbian countrymen.

  • The Mexican state of Quintana Roo joined Mexico City, where more than 1,000 same-sex couples have married, and will marry same-sex couples. Thanks, capitalism!

Cancun and other resort areas on the Mexican Caribbean will have a new attraction for gay and lesbian couples from the United States, Canada and Europe, allowing them to legalize their unions thanks to a quirk in the local civil code. ...

“This market niche ... is very attractive for European, Canadian and American (homosexual) couples,” said the spokesperson for Colectivo Diversidad.

  • Meanwhile, in Michigan, state employees can't even get their same-sex partners covered under their health-insurance plans. Don't even think the word "marriage," y'all!

Many government employers in Michigan will be barred from providing health-care benefits to the domestic partners of public employees under legislation signed by Gov. Rick Snyder on Thursday.

  • And CNN Money reminded us married homos how much DOMA is costing us, compared to our heterosexual siblings. Of course, we don't care, because we're all rich. I mean, think of all the female writers married to female state workers and raising a child (cough, cough)—we wouldn't even notice the extra money. 

Same-sex spouses are paying as much as $6,000 a year in extra taxes because the federal government doesn't recognize gay marriage, according to an analysis conducted for CNNMoney by tax specialists.

  • But here's something genuinely cheery: I'm not the only one who believes that the transgender column of the LGBT movement has reached breakthrough status, with genuine hopey-changiness on the horizon. In The Advocate, Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, lays out 14 reasons that 2011 was great for transfolks, from improved health-care policies to increased visibility and understanding:

2011 is especially marked by victory after victory. Most Americans now know a little bit more about the struggle trans people face. Every day people are becoming stronger trans allies. From the trans actors we are finally seeing on movie and television screens, to local nondiscrimination laws, and to the global call for LGBT rights, there is real change in nearly every facet of our lives.

  • Chaz, by the way, is only one of the newly out transgender celebrity offspring. Did you know that Warren Beatty and Annette Bening's child is transitioning to male? I didn't, until I read in the Globe & Mail Online that the former Kathlyn is now Stephen. (Could having a transgender child have influenced Bening's willingness to play the butch mom in The Kids Are All Right? She was brilliant.) Stephen sounds great:

Stephen is currently embroiled in a war of words with Chaz Bono, who she branded a 'mysogonist' after he claimed being transgender as effectively having a 'mismatched' brain and body, akin to a 'birth defect like a cleft palate'.

Warren's son said in his blog: '[Chaz] has appointed himself as the representative of a group of people who are not all like him.

'He has said misogynistic ... things about gender. I take particular issue with his comments on trans embodiment and on women.'

 

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