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washingtonblade.com - vol. 41, issue 51, december 17, 2010

washingtonblade.com - vol. 41, issue 51, december 17, 2010

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House Vote on 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell', Lexington's Gay Mayor, Marriage in Maryland, Twisty Nutcracker, Holiday Gift Guide, Gay News, Gay Entertainment, Gay Nightlife
House Vote on 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell', Lexington's Gay Mayor, Marriage in Maryland, Twisty Nutcracker, Holiday Gift Guide, Gay News, Gay Entertainment, Gay Nightlife

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Published by: Washington Blade Newspaper on Dec 16, 2010
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Supporters optimistic, but 2012 referendum expected
 By LOU CHIBBARO JR.lchibbaro@washblade.com
Advocates or same-sex mar-riage in Maryland, including theseven gay and lesbian memberso the state legislature, are op-timistic that the legislature willpass a marriage equality bill in2011 but they are less certainabout the prospects or a trans-gender rights bill.The gains in the number o supporters o a same-sex marriage bill in the November election andcommitments by top leaders o the legislature to name marriage equality supporters to the commit-tees that must clear them appear to have tipped the balance in avor o the bill passing, according toadvocates and lawmakers.
Meet the new (gay)mayor o Lexington, Ky.,who is preparing totake oce Jan. 2.
Chris Dyer stepsdown, city to getnew GLBT Aairsdirector under Gray.
the lgbtq community news source
washingtonblade.com • vol. 41, issue 51 • december 17, 2010 • Still sharp after 40 years
Time is the enemy, as momentumbuilds to ditch gay ban
By CHRIS JOHNSONcjohnson@washblade.com
The U.S. House on Wednesday approved by a75-vote margin a measure that would repeal “Don’tAsk, Don’t Tell” as attention shits once again to theSenate to see i the chamber will act to lit the mili-tary’s gay ban.The measure to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”passed by a vote o 250-175 ater more than anhour o foor debate in which lawmakers engagedin oten passionate discourse both in avor and inopposition to the 1993 law.Ater lawmakers cast their votes, Rep. BarneyFrank (D-Mass.), the longest-serving openly gaylawmaker, banged the gavel at the podium anddeclared the nal vote tally or the bill.During debate, those who spoke in avor o re-peal said liting “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” would enda discriminatory policy, while opponents o repealsaid open service would jeopardize military eec-tiveness.
Marriage in Maryland?
House votes again to repeal ‘Don’t Ask’
Last chance to catch two shows, ‘Wie Swappers’ and ‘Golden Boy.’
PAGE 29Continues on page 14Continues on page 8
U.S. ambassador creates stir in Italy with his ‘It Gets Better’ video.
Nancy Pelosi
, speaking at a news conerence ollowing a House vote to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ called the law ‘a unda-mental unairness in our nation.’
Washington Blade photo by Michael Key
nutcrackerwith a twist
Go backstage withGay Men’s Chorusas members prepare orclassic holiday show.
Heather Mizeur
said she is ‘cautiously optimistic’ that the state legis-lature will approve a marriage equality bill early next year.
Washington Blade fle photo by Michael Key
2 washingtonblade.com • december 17, 2010
Dyer out as head ofGLBT Affairs Office
Christopher Dyer, who has served as director o thecity’s Ofce o GLBT Aairs since 2007 under MayorAdrian Fenty, was notifed last week that Mayor-electVincent Gray will not be retaining him or the post whenGray takes ofce in January.Dyer was among more than a dozen high-level Fentyappointees to receive a notice rom the Gray transitionteam accepting the written resignations they submittedater Gray won election as mayor in November.Under longstanding city protocol, all political ap-pointees o an outgoing mayoral administration sub-mit letters o resignation to the incoming mayor. Theincoming mayor usually accepts the resignations omost o the ofcials but oten chooses to retain someo them—either as interim or permanent appointees inthe new administration.Like other Fenty appointees to be replaced, Dyer isexpected to remain in ofce until Dec. 30. Gray is to besworn in as mayor Jan. 2.“Its been an honor to serve the mayor and LGBT resi-dents o the District o Columbia,” Dyer said this week.“This has been an amazing experience or me and Iam very ortunate to be given the opportunity to worka dream job. I look orward to providing whatever helpappropriate to the incoming administration.”Gray said last week that he expects to name a new heado the GLBT Aairs Ofce within the next week or two.Sources amiliar with the Gray transition team sayJerey Richardson, president o the Gertrude SteinDemocratic Club, which endorsed Gray or mayor, andChristopher Fitzgerald, head o Gray Pride, an LGBTarm o the Gray election campaign, are among thoseGray is considering or the LGBT Aairs post.LGBT and AIDS activists were also waiting to seewho Gray names as head o the city’s Human Rights O-fce and AIDS ofce and whether he retains or replacesD.C. Police Chie Cathy Lanier.
Family of slain gay principalpushes hate crime prosecution
Lawyers representing the amily o murdered D.C.middle school principal Brian Betts, who was gay, metwith ofcials at the U.S. Department o Justice on Dec.7 to reiterate an earlier request that the department in-vestigate whether the murder should be declared a ed-eral hate crime.Los Angeles attorney Gloria Allred, who has repre-sented celebrities in high-profle cases, said ater themeeting that she and co-counsel Rene Sandler askedmembers o the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division to determinewhether at least one o the our teenagers charged inthe murder violated the Matthew Shepard and JamesByrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act o 2009.Allred noted that deendant Alante Saunders, 19,pled guilty to frst-degree elony murder or shootingBetts to death and has been sentenced to 40 years injail. But she said his use o a gay sex chat line to meetBetts and target him or a robbery could be grounds orinitiating a hate crime prosecution.“It is clear to us that a person who participates in amale-to-male sex-chat line would be perceived as gayand may be thought to be an especially vulnerable tar-get or a criminal,” Allred said.Sandler said the Justice Department ofcials prom-ised to review the case and make a determination inthe near uture on whether to open a hate crime inves-tigation in the Betts murder case. She said the meetinglasted more than an hour.Betts was ound murdered in his Silver Spring, Md.,house in April. In addition to Saunders, two other youthsimplicated in Betts’ murder pled guilty to lesser charg-es. A ourth youth is scheduled to stand trial but is saidto be considering accepting a plea bargain oer romprosecutors.The chie prosecutor in the case has said the evi-dence doesn’t support a hate crime prosecution.
Gag order request
denied in Wone case
The judge presiding over a $20 million wronguldeath lawsuit fled against three gay men or the 2006murder o local attorney Robert Wone denied the men’srequest that all lawyers in the case be barred romspeaking to the media.Lawyers representing Joseph Price, Victor Zaborskyand Dylan Ward argued that remarks made to the pressby at least one o the attorneys representing KathyWone, wie o the slain attorney, were highly prejudicialand would make it difcult to obtain an impartial jury inthe case.They were reerring to a comment by attorney PatrickRegan outside the courtroom earlier this year related tothe deendants’ stated plan to invoke the Fith Amend-ment to allow them to reuse to answer nearly all ques-tions at their trial next spring.Regan told members o the media that, “deendantsdon’t assert their fth amendment rights i they are notguilty o something.”The deendants are expected to argue that answer-ing questions in the civil trial or during pre-trial deposi-tions could incriminate them in a possible uture crimi-nal prosecution.The three were ound not guilty on charges o con-spiracy and evidence tampering in connection with theWone murder in a criminal trial earlier this year. No onehas been charged with the murder.In addition to denying the deendants’ gag order re-quest, Judge Brook Hedge also denied a deense mo-tion to dismiss the entire case.Hedge denied a third motion by the deense request-ing that the deendants’ lawyers rather than the deen-dants themselves be allowed to recite the Fith Amend-ment as grounds or not answering a question each timethe plainti’s lawyers fre questions at the deendants.Under this ruling, Price, Zaborsky and Ward muststate or themselves—while on the witness stand or inpre-trial depositions—that they are invoking their FithAmendment right not to answer a question.Robert Wone was ound stabbed to death in a guestbedroom in the Dupont Circle area home o the threemen in August 2006. The men have said an unidentifedintruder killed Wone ater entering the house through arear door. Police and prosecutors disputed this claim,saying evidence showed that no one entered the homeat the time o the murder and that the three men knowwho the murderer is but are covering up or that person.A D.C. Superior Court judge, who presided over thenon-jury criminal trial, ruled that the government did notprovide sufcient evidence to prove beyond a reason-able doubt that the three men committed the oenseswith which they were charged—obstruction o justice,conspiracy to obstruct justice and evidence tampering.Legal experts have said civil cases require a lowerthreshold o proo, making it possible that the threegay deendants could be ound responsible or RobertWone’s death rom a civil standpoint. A jury must de-cide the amount o monetary damages the men wouldbe responsible or i ound guilty.
Christopher Dyer
has served as director o the city’s Ofceo GLBT Aairs since 2007.
Washington Blade fle photo by Michael Key
D.C. middle school principal
Brian Betts
was murdered in April.
Washington Blade fle photo
december 17, 2010 • washingtonblade.com 3
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