Gay and Lesbian Update

This monthly column features news and issues affecting gays and lesbians in Canada and around the world. Look for it on the second week of each month, only in The Voice.

A Cornell University expert says the term “gay adolescent” will soon disappear. According to Ritch Savin-Williams, professor and chair of human development in Cornell’s College of Human Ecology, “the new gay teenager is in many respects the non-gay teenager.” He asserts that the label of “gay” is inadequate to describe adolescent sexuality. Ritch believes fewer teenagers want or need to identify with the label. He contends that most adolescents do not link sexuality and identity.

Q Television Network (QT) is making a bid to buy Canada’s PrideVision television station. The station was the world’s first gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender television station broadcasting 24/7. Frank Olsen, President and CEO of QT, is optimistic the bid will be successful. He foresees economic benefits for QT attributable to the acquisition.

An amendment to the US constitution to ban gay marriage has been re-introduced in the House of Representatives. It was put forward only days after a judge in San Franscisco ruled that the ban is unconstitutional. If the amendment is enacted, the Constitution would provide for the unequal treatment of a subset of the population.

Alberta has spent $110,000 in legal fees to fight same-sex marriage. Most of the Progressive Conservative Members of the Legislative Assembly are opposed to same-sex marriage.

Two gay men were executed in Saudi Arabia recently. The men allegedly beat to death a Pakistani man to stop him from exposing their homosexual relationship. Homosexuality is a criminal offense in Saudi Arabia.

Judge Richard Kramer has ruled that California’s voter-approved Defence of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. He said that there was “no rational purpose” for denying same-sex couples marriage rights. The state’s Supreme Court is expected to settle the issue.

New York City is going to recognize certain same-sex marriages. The marriages must have been legally performed in an out of state location where the marriage or civil union is legally recognized. Special Counsel to Mayor Bloomberg made the proactive announcement. Courts in the state of New York are currently examining if same-sex marriages will be performed and legally recognized in the state.

Without prodding from a court, Connecticut’s state Senate approved a bill to legalize same-sex unions. The bill provides for Vermont-style civil unions. The Governor has expressed support previously for civil unions in the state. The bill must now be voted on by the state’s House.

Quote of the Month

“From this whirlwind comes a campaign against fellow citizens trying to find in this difficult world a measure of happiness through a singular commitment to another human being. But try to find a compelling state interest in denying two adults the fundamental right to marry because of their sexual orientation. There is none.”

Steighner, G. (2005, March 19). Saturday essay: Legal reason. Pittsburgh Tribune Review. Retrieved on April 10, 2005, from