The Arkansas Supreme Court decision to keep medical marijuana’s legalization on the ballot introduces some unpredictability to the November election and shifts attention to an issue that might not be easily defined by party labels.
That’s no small feat for an Arkansas election dominated by predictability when it comes to national politics and partisan bickering when it comes to the state level. With Republicans aiming to win control of the state Legislature for the first time since Reconstruction, this may be one of the few issues where Arkansas voters won’t hew to traditional party lines.
California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed legislation barring state-licensed therapists from using so-called ex-gay therapy on LGBT youth.
California state Sen. Ted Lieu introduced the bill with co-sponsors National Center for Lesbian Rights, Equality California, Gaylesta, Mental Health America of Northern California, Lambda Legal and the Courage Campaign.
There was a time when a Vatican trial could end with a heretic being burned at the stake. Paolo Gabriele doesn't risk nearly as a dire fate, but he and the Holy See face a very public airing over the gravest security breach in the Vatican's recent history following the theft and leaking of the pope's personal papers.
Gabriele, the pope's once-trusted butler, goes on trial Saturday, accused of stealing the pope's documents and passing them off to a journalist – a sensational, Hollywood-like scandal that exposed power struggles, intrigue and allegations of corruption in the highest levels of the Catholic Church.
The Supreme Court term now getting under way holds the prospect for major rulings about affirmative action, gay marriage and voting rights.
A look at cases the court already has agreed to hear and other top cases in the pipeline:
Thousands of right-wing Christian zealots gathered Saturday on Independence Mall in Philadelphia to pray for the future of the United States in the weeks before the presidential election.
Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson and Tony Perkins, president of the hate group Family Research Council, topped a full day of speakers at “The America for Jesus 2012” prayer rally.
A judge on Sept. 27 tossed out charges against 92 Occupy protesters arrested in a Chicago park last October, severely criticizing what the city had proudly held up as a better way for dealing with demonstrations.
Cook County Associate Judge Thomas Donnelly ruled that the city’s curfew law was unconstitutional and that the city selectively enforced it. He noted police had cracked down on the protesters’ tent camp when the park closed at 11 p.m., but had not moved against others who stayed in the same park past that hour at other times – including those who had come to see Barack Obama after he won the presidency three years earlier.
Rock music veteran Patti Smith will be honored by Bryn Mawr College for her artistic accomplishments and pioneering spirit.
The women's liberal arts school near Philadelphia announced that Smith will receive the 2013 Katharine Hepburn Medal.
The Department of Homeland Security is setting a new policy that illegal immigrants with American same-sex partners are eligible to have their deportations put on hold under a federal program designed to focus resources away from low-priority cases.
The move had been sought by gay rights activists and their allies in Congress before Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced plans for the policy this week in a letter to 84 Democratic lawmakers.
The word “faggot” has been tweeted more than 2.5 million times since July 5, according to researchers at the University of Alberta’s Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services.
The phrases “so gay” and “no homo” have been tweeted nearly one millions times.
More than four of every 10 Illinois voters now support legalizing gay marriage, a 10-point increase in just two years, according to a poll released Sept. 26.
Forty-four percent of those polled said they believe gay and lesbian couples “should be allowed to legally marry,” according to Southern Illinois University's Paul Simon Public Policy Institute. When the same institute asked that question in 2010, only 34 percent backed gay marriage.
The Austin City Council has voted to make the capital city of Texas the first in the state to formally endorse the legalization of same-sex marriages.
The vote this week was unanimous.
Christian conservatives, blaming “moral depravity” for everything from the recession to terrorism, are converging on Philadelphia for a mashup of a religious revival and election rally.
Called “America for Jesus 2012,” the assembly is attracting support across a spectrum of Protestant clergy and activists. Among the scheduled speakers are far-right religious broadcaster Pat Robertson and Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, along with preachers such as Cindy Jacobs of Generals International ministry who say they’re prophets with a direct line to God.