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by Rex Wockner - SGN Contributing Writer

Milk Gays the Oscars
The Academy Awards offered some Gayer-than-usual moments February 22 as the movie Milk snagged two Oscars.

Accepting the award for best actor, for his portrayal of Gay icon Harvey Milk, actor Sean Penn said: "You commie, homo-loving sons of guns. ... For those who saw the signs of hatred as our cars drove in tonight, I think that it is a good time for those who voted for the ban against Gay marriage to sit and reflect, and anticipate their great shame and the shame in their grandchildren's eyes if they continue that way of support. We've got to have equal rights for everyone."

And openly Gay Dustin Lance Black, accepting the trophy for original screenplay, gave a shout-out to Gay kids.

"When I was 13 years old, my beautiful mother and my father moved me from a conservative Mormon home in San Antonio, Tex., to California, and I heard the story of Harvey Milk," Black said. "And it gave me hope. It gave me the hope to live my life. It gave me the hope one day I could live my life openly as who I am and that maybe even I could fall in love and one day get married.

"If Harvey had not been taken from us 30 years ago, I think he'd want me to say to all of the Gay and Lesbian kids out there tonight who have been told that they are 'less than' by their churches, by the government or by their families, that you are beautiful, wonderful creatures of value and that no matter what anyone tells you, God does love you, and that very soon, I promise you, you will have equal rights federally across this great nation of ours."

In Singapore, where Gay sex is illegal, MediaCorp TV deleted portions of Black's and Penn's speeches from its rebroadcast of the awards.

MediaCorp/Channel 5 censorship manager David Christie said the broadcast "would have been in serious breach of the MDA [Media Development Authority] Programme Code if such controversial content was not editorially managed."

"The code explicitly disallows content that sympathizes with, promotes or normalizes such a lifestyle from being broadcast," he said.

The Asian satellite TV service STAR also censored the two men's speeches, dropping the audio each time the word "Gay" or "Lesbian" was uttered.

STAR beams into more than 50 countries to some 300 million viewers.

Drag queen elected homecoming queen
Students at George Mason University in Fairfax County, Va., elected a Gay drag queen as homecoming queen February 14.

Senior Ryan Allen, who ran for the honor as Reann Ballslee, beat out two women for the crown.

"It was just for fun," Allen told the Washington Post. "In the larger scheme of things, winning says so much about the university. We're one of the most diverse campuses in the country, and ... we celebrate that."

Utah senator demoted for anti-Gay remarks
Utah state Sen. Chris Buttars was ousted from two committees by Republican leaders February 20 after he made homophobic remarks to a documentary maker.

Buttars spoke in January to TV reporter Reed Cowan, who is making a documentary on the Mormon church's involvement in the passage of California's Proposition 8.

The senator's comments included: "Homosexuality will always be a sexual perversion. And you say that around here now and everybody goes nuts. But I don't care. ... They're mean. They want to talk about being nice, they're the meanest buggers I've ever seen. ... It's just like the Moslems. Moslems are good people and their religion is anti-war. But it's been taken over by the radical side. ... What is the morals of a Gay person? You can't answer that because anything goes. ... They're probably the greatest threat to America going down I know of. ... They want superiority. It's the beginning of the end. Oh, it's worse than that. Sure. Sodom and Gomorrah was localized. This is worldwide."

According to Salt Lake City's KTVX, which broke the story: "Buttars also talks about a certain type of reported Gay sexual activity which he claims is taking place. But ABC 4 does not consider that appropriate for its news content."

Colorado senator in anti-Gay rant
Colorado state Sen. Scott Renfroe, R-Greeley, unleashed a six-minute anti-Gay diatribe on the floor of the Senate February 23 during debate on a bill to allow Gay state employees to share health benefits with their partners.

He equated Gay sex with murder and adultery and seemingly suggested that people who engage in Gay sex commit "detestable" acts worthy of "death."

Renfroe said: "Homosexuality is seen as a violation of this natural creative order, and it is an offense to God. ... Leviticus 18:22 says: 'You shall not lie with a man as one lies with a female. It is an abomination.' Leviticus 20:13 says, 'If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act, and they shall surely be put to death.' ... When we create laws that goes [sic] against what biblically we are supposed to stand for, I think we are agreeing, or allowing to go forward, a sin which should not be treated by government as something that is legal. ... We are taking sins and making them to be legally OK, and that is wrong. That is an abomination. ... And I'm not saying that this is the only sin that's out there. Obviously, we have sin. We have murder, we have all sorts of sins. We have adultery. And we don't make laws making those legal. ... All sin is equal. That sin there is as equal to any other sin that's in the Bible."

The bill passed.

With assistance from Bill Kelley

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