Lesbian faculty membersnamed as ‘instigators’ forplacing McCaskill on leave
By LOU CHIBBARO JR.firstname.lastname@example.org
ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Gallaudet University’s chief diversity ofﬁcer said her reputation was unfairly“tarnished” last week when the university placed her onpaid administrative leave for signing a petition in July toplace Maryland’s same-sex marriage law on the ballot ina voter referendum.At a news conference outside the Maryland State CapitolBuilding in Annapolis, Angela McCaskill, who served asGallaudet’s Associate Provost of Diversity and Inclusion,identiﬁed two out lesbian faculty members as the ones sheclaims persuaded Gallaudet President T. Alan Hurwitz tosuspend her from her job.She identiﬁed the faculty members as Martina “MJ”Bienvenu and Kendra Smith, saying the two are partners andwrote a joint letter to Hurwitz asking that she be reprimanded.Bienvenu and Smith couldn’t be immediately reachedfor comment.“I was shocked, hurt, insulted. I was humiliated,”McCaskill said, adding that Hurwitz sought to punishher for merely exercising her private right as a Marylandresident to sign a petition to allow voters to make theﬁnal decision on whether the same-sex marriage lawshould be retained or overturned.“They have attempted to intimidate me and tarnishmy reputation,” she said.McCaskill, speaking in sign language, delivered hercomments through an interpreter.She declined to disclose her position on same-sexmarriage or whether she will vote for or against themarriage equality law in the Nov. 6 referendum.McCaskill’s news conference came hours after the
OCTOBER 19 2012 VOLUME 43 ISSUE 42 •
OUR COMMUNITY, OUR STORIES SINCE 1969
Invigorated Obamatakes on Romney inspirited town hall
By CHRIS JOHNSONcjohnson@washblade.com
The town hall presidential debate onTuesday night included references to socialissues, such as women’s rights, immigrationand gun violence but as in the previousdebate, there was no explicit mention of LGBT issues.During the debate at Hofstra University,Republican presidential nominee MittRomney brought up his belief in marriageas a means to reduce the culture of violence in response to a question aboutbanning assault weapons, saying “weneed moms and dads helping raise kids”and espousing “the beneﬁt of having twoparents in the home.”“A lot of great single moms, singledads,” Romney said. “But gosh, to tell ourkids that before they have babies, theyought to think about getting married tosomeone — that’s a great idea because if there’s a two-parent family, the prospect of
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Gallaudet University chief diversity ofﬁcer
this week denounced a decision by theschool to put her on leave after she signed an anti-gaypetition in Maryland.
WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY
Gallaudet ofﬁcial blastsschool, hints at lawsuit
Fight Heats Up
NAACP president talksmarriage support;opponent in Md. hashistory of IRS run-ins.
LGBT issues absentfrom prez debate
Gay biographer William
Mann deconstructsBarbra Streisand’s ascentto superstardom.