Facebook is apologizing to drag queens and the transgender community for deleting accounts that used drag names like Lil Miss Hot Mess rather than legal names such as Bob Smith.
The world's biggest online social network caught heat recently when it deleted several hundred accounts belonging to self-described drag queens, other performers and members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Facebook has long required its users to go by their "real names" on the site for security purposes, to stand out from other social networks and so it can better target advertising to people. Now, the company says the spirit of its policy doesn't mean a person's legal name but "the authentic name they use in real life."
Citizens, not the courts, should decide whether the definition of marriage includes same-sex couples, the state of Alaska said in court papers filed late last week.
The state is defending in federal court an amendment to Alaska's constitution that bans gay marriage.
Three people are charged in connection with an attack on a gay couple outside a Philadelphia restaurant earlier this month.
The assault, which resulted in hospitalization for the gay men, became a focus for amateur investigators who responded via social media to requests for leads from Philadelphia police.
Same-sex couples in 11 more states would win the right to marry, but the issue would remain unsettled nationwide if the Supreme Court were to surprise everyone and decline to take up gay marriage right now.
A decision by the justices to reject calls from all quarters to take up same-sex marriage would lead to gay and lesbian unions in 30 states and the District of Columbia, up from 19 states.
The United Nations’ Human Rights Council on Sept. 26 adopted a resolution condemning discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
“The Human Rights Council has taken a fundamental step forward by reaffirming one of the United Nations’ key principles — that everyone is equal in dignity and rights,” said Jessica Stern, executive director of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission. “This resolution puts the UN on a trajectory to address the discrimination and violence LGBT persons suffer daily across the world.”
Authorities say the Lakeland Eye Clinic in Lakeland, Florida, discriminated based on sex in violation of federal law by firing an employee because she is transgender, because she was transitioning and because she did not conform to the employer’s gender-based expectations, preferences or stereotypes.
The charges are made in a lawsuit filed on Sept. 25 by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The complaint is one of the first two lawsuits ever filed by the agency alleging sex discrimination against transgender individuals. The other case, EEOC v. R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. also was was filed on Sept. 25.
The fate of Texas' tough voter ID law moved into the hands of a federal judge this week, following a trial that the U.S. Justice Department said exposed another chapter in the state's troubling history of discrimination in elections.
State attorneys defending the law signed by Republican Gov. Rick Perry in 2011 urged the judge to follow other courts by upholding photo identification requirements. The most recent such case came this month when a federal appeals panel reinstated Wisconsin's law in time for Election Day.
Police say a dog was found drowned with a bowling ball tied to it in a Northern California river and they're looking for a suspect.
The Sacramento Bee reported on Sept. 28 Sunday that the 12-year-old border collie named Zelda was found in the American River with a leash on its collar tied to a bowling bag with a ball and a rock inside.
The International Olympic Committee will require future Olympic host cities to abide by rules that forbid any kind of discrimination, a move prompted by the outcry caused by Russia's adoption of a law banning so-called gay "propaganda" before the Sochi Winter Games.
The International Olympic Committee sent a letter to the three candidates for the 2022 Winter Games specifying that the host city contract will include new wording on non-discrimination.
This weekend's crossover episode of Fox's "Family Guy" and "The Simpsons" has received criticism for a scene where a character uses rape as a punchline for a joke.
It's not the first time the animated "Family Guy" has gotten its creators in hot water. Here are some other examples:
A federal judge on Sept. 23 reinstated federal protections for gray wolves in Wyoming, rejecting the state's "wolf-management" plan that allowed them to be hunted as unprotected predators.
U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled in favor of national environmental groups that said protections were severely lacking for the wolf, for years considered an endangered species threatened with extinction.