Week of April 3–7, 2006

Task Force salutes U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold for supporting marriage equality

In an April 4 statement, U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) announced that he supports giving same-sex couples the freedom to marry. He becomes the fourth U.S. senator to do so.

The Associated Press carried Executive Director Matt Foreman’s response: “This kind of statement is something we have been yearning for — at long last we have a fair-minded progressive leader taking an ethical and moral stance. No hair splitting, no waffling, no equivocating.”

Policy Institute report unmasks right wing’s courtship of African-American vote

On April 4, the Rev. Dr. Yvette Flunder, presiding bishop of Refuge Ministries, and National Black Justice Coalition Executive Director H. Alexander Robinson joined the Task Force for the report’s release and both had strong words to share about the unconscionable Republican right-wing courtship of the African-American vote.

National Religious Leadership Roundtable boosts Equality Ride

Task Force National Religious Leadership Roundtable members joined with Soulforce's Equality Riders in an April 4 action at California Baptist University in Riverside, Calif. They spoke with students one on one and challenged them to engage in conversation about LGBT people and what their religion teaches them about LGBT lives. The action was peaceful. As the Equality Riders walked onto campus, security guards and local police asked them to leave. They peaceably continued walking, were not stopped and were able to engage in a productive dialogue with students. Clergy members of the Roundtable wore their collars in a show of support for the action.

Task Force’s Midwest Power Summit draws record attendance

“Wisconsin is in a strong position to be the breakthrough state in this struggle our community is facing to defeat anti-gay ballot initiatives at the polls.” — Dave Fleischer, director of Organizing & Training

More than 165 LGBT activists and allies from 19 states and the District of Columbia converged in Milwaukee, Wis., April 7–9, for the Task Force’s tenth Power Summit — the largest Power Summit ever. We’ll have a full report for you next week.

San Francisco gay population surges in Bush years

According to a study by the San Francisco Department of Health, the gay population in the city has increased by 25 percent since 2001. Are LGBT people voting with their feet and leaving parts of the country that have become increasingly hostile?

Minority couples have the most to gain/lose in the marriage fight

The Seattle Gay News publishes an op-ed from the Task Force: Black, Latino, Asian same-sex couples have most to gain, lose from marriage fight