Red Lodge Ski Event to Raise Money for Scholarship


Billings Group Hopes to Establish LGBTQ Scholarship for Montana

RED LODGE, MT — The Billings-based group TAP 365 will bring Slide 4 Pride to the Beartooth Recreational Nordic Center on Saturday, March 17, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  This family-friendly cross-country ski event aims to raise money to start a scholarship fund for a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or straight-allied Montana student, and will also accept donations for the Beartooth Recreational Trails Association.

“Gay students are more likely to lose family support and even face homelessness after they come out,” explained Suzie Eades, a volunteer with TAP 365 and Pride Foundation who is planning the ski event after two successful 4 Pride fundraisers earlier this year in Billings. “It’s important that our community step up and show these students that we believe in them and know they can succeed in college.”

TAP 365 is a new nonprofit aimed at raising awareness about LGBTQ issues east of the Continental Divide and to build bridges with heterosexual allies. TAP 365 hopes the 4 Pride events will raise enough money to endow a scholarship fund, which will be managed by Pride Foundation and perpetually support a Montana LGBTQ student who is pursuing a degree or post-secondary certification in Montana.

“We are thrilled to partner once again with TAP 365 and the 4 Pride Event Series,” said Caitlin Copple, Montana’s Regional Development Organizer for Pride Foundation.  “It’s great to see the energy and enthusiasm coming out of the Billings community for LGBTQ equality, thanks to the work of these volunteers.”

Slide 4 Pride is a free event featuring beginning cross-country ski instruction, food, and music under a heated tent. All donations are tax deductible, and sponsorships from the Pride Foundation, Jason Webinger of Farmers Insurance in Billings and Café Regis of Red Lodge helped underwrite event costs.

Pride Foundation provides grants and scholarships to strengthen the LGBTQ equality movement across the Northwest states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana.  It is the single largest provider of scholarships for LGBTQ students in the nation, and will give away $380,000 in community scholarships this year.  To learn more, visit www.pridefoundation.org or email Caitlin@pridefoundation.org or call 406.546.7017.

“Kill every last gay person”‏

Citibank and Barclays could save the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in Uganda.

The Ugandan legislature could vote any day on a so-called “Kill the Gays” bill that could result in legalizing the death penalty for any LGBT person in the country. But Citibank and Barclays together have hundreds of millions of dollars invested in Uganda and wield significant influence in the country, just as banking lobbyists wield influence with Congress in the US. If Citibank and Barclays speak out against the “Kill the Gays” bill, Ugandan legislators will take notice in a hurry.

Collin Burton is a Citibank customer — he’s also gay. Collin started a petition on Change.org asking Citibank and Barclays to speak out against the “Kill the Gays” bill. Click here to sign Collin’s petition right now.

Citibank and Barclays are both big supporters of LGBT rights for their own employees, yet they invest money with a government that is threatening to execute LGBT people. “I expect Citibank and Barclays to live up to the values of equality and fairness, not just list them on their websites,” Collin says.

If Citibank and Barclays speak out against the “Kill the Gays” bill, Ugandan legislators will see that they are risking the business relationships that keep their government afloat.

Click here to sign Collin’s petition asking Citibank and Barclays to issue strong statements condemning Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill. The bill could come up for a vote any day, so swift action is essential.

Dutch Outraged Over Santorum’s Euthanasia Claim

More Santorum leaking.

Check this out. From Buzzfeed:

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...

Image via Wikipedia

Rick Santorum’s invocation of a nightmare of mass murder of the elderly in the Netherlands has provoked a storm of incredulity and criticism in the Western European country, where the local press say his statistics are wildly inflated.

“Rick Santorum Thinks He Knows the Netherlands: Murder of the Elderly on a Grand Scale” is Saturday’s headline in the daily newspaper NRC Handelsblad.

“Rick Santorum is an arch conservative. The most conservative of all candidates in the Republican primaries. He loathes abortion and euthanasia. So now he loathes the Netherlands. Because in the Netherlands we kill the elderly like there’s no tomorrow,” reads the story, according to a translation provided by BuzzFeed’s Low Country correspondent, and author of a Dutch blog on American politics, Bertine Moenaff. The story quotes Santorum, before concluding: “This man is really imaginative. It would be a laughing matter, if he weren’t in the race for the Republican nomination to take on Barack Obama in the race for the presidency of the most powerful country in the world.”

Santorum said in an interview with social conservative leader James Dobson earlier this month that euthanasia makes up “ten percent of all deaths, and half of those people are euthanized involuntarily, because they are old or sick. And so elderly people in the Netherlands don’t go into a hospital. They go to other country.”

The Dutch public broadcaster Radio 1 described Santorum’s remark as “fact-free politics,” and the comments have gotten wide play, leading this evening’s broadcast of the country’s popular current-event’s show De Wereld Draait Door and drawing reports all over the national media.

The Dutch sources estimate that legal euthanasia is the cause of what the Christian paper Nederlands Dagblad put at 3.2% fo deaths at the most liberal estimate, and others put around 2%. Public statistics, which have been reported since the practice was legalized in 2002, cite 3,136 reports of euthanasia out of a total of 136,000 in the Netherlands in 2011, a bit more than 2%.

The Dutch were also flummoxed by Santorum’s claim that Dutch elderly wear “Don’t Euthanize Me” bracelets.

Other reports label Santorum a “crazy extreme Catholic” with “a surreal view of the Netherlands.”

Tester Meets with Constituents, Rehberg Continues Invisibility Plan

From The Montana Democrats:

While multimillionaire Congressman Dennis Rehberg continues to hide from the public (see ‘Related Articles’ below), Jon Tester  hosted his 10th public small business workshop, following months of meetings with Montanans across the state.

Denny Rehberg - Caricature

Denny Rehberg - Caricature (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

As for Congressman Rehberg?  He cancelled his latest scheduled appearance–at a Republican Party fundraiser he was supposed to headline Sunday in Havre.  And Congressman Rehberg has held virtually no public meetings with Montanans since November.

After 35 years in politics, Congressman Rehberg no longer thinks he’s accountable to Montana,” said Ted Dick, executive director of the Montana Democratic Party. “Congressman Rehberg gave himself five pay raises in Congress, but he votes to cut funding for our public schools, cut Pell grants, and cut health care for our veterans.  His 35-year career in politics is marked by irresponsible decisions like tax breaks for fellow millionaires and corporations that ship jobs overseas—at the expense of Montana families, education, Medicare and Social Security.”

Congressman Rehberg has avoided accountability for the last year, hiding the donations he takes from lobbyists, refusing to meet with Montanans, and giving his full endorsement to the Citizens United ruling that allows big corporations to spend unlimited money on dishonest political attack ads.  Here’s more:

Hiding Campaign Cash from Lobbyists:  An investigation by the Associated Press found Congressman Rehberg refused to disclose the identities of 189 lobbyists on his financial disclosure reports. Rehberg hid more than $20,000 he took from Washington lobbyists.

Dodging Public Meetings with Constituents:  Congressman Rehberg went 6 months without holding a public townhall meeting, and when he finally scheduled one, he watched a Sheriff removed someone from the meeting.

Siding with Anonymous Corporate Cash in Elections:  Following his endorsement by Citizens United, Congressman Rehberg gave his full endorsement to the secretive organization’s Supreme Court Ruling, which allows big corporations to spend unlimited to buy elections.

Items From New Ways Ministry

New Ways Ministry Blog offers some items of interest to LGBT-inclusive Christians:

1) Sister Maureen Fiedler, who blogs for the National Catholic Reporter, comments on the passage of the Maryland marriage equality bill by suggesting that “Catholic bishops should read the writing on the wall for same-sex marriage.”

2) In a HuffingtonPost.com essay, Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director of DignityUSA, observes that “Same-Sex Marriage IS Dangerous — to Church Workers .”  She is commenting on the recent firing of a Catholic parish’s music director, whichBondings 2.0 reported on here.

3) North Carolina’s two Catholic bishops are among the supporters of a proposed state constitutional amendment to define marriage heterosexually, according to “Both sides gear up in N.C. gay marriage fight,” which appeared on The Washington Post website.

4) Maryland’s Martin O’Malley and New Jersey’s Chris Christie, two Catholic governors who have opposing views about marriage equality for lesbian and gay couples, will square off on TV’s “Face the Nation,” Sunday, February 26, 2012, on CBS.  While the topic for their segment is the 2012 presidential race, since both governors have been so visible about marriage equality, it will likely come up as a topic of discussion.  For more details, check out The Washington Post’s article  “O’Malley, adversary Chris Christie booked on ‘Face the Nation.’ “

–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry

‘The Lorax’ Is Brainwashing Our Kids Says Fox News

It was just a matter of time.

What with Santorum’s matter-of-factness about the Republican agenda, Gingrich’s out-of-touchness, and Romney’s resolutely-stoic-good-looks, there had to be something crazy going on out there.

Not one to disappoint, Lou Dobbs has jumped on the conspiracy theory bandwagon by accusing Dr Suess of being a tree-hugging lefty brainwashing child indoctrinator:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

“Aspirin” Billionaire To Bankroll Rehberg

From the Montana Democrats:

via Wikipedia

Foster Friess–the billionaire donor who said women should use aspirin “between their knees” as birth control–is considering a massive contribution to Crossroads GPS, Karl Rove’s secretive front group that has already spent over $600,000 to support multimillionaire Congressman Dennis Rehberg.

According to the New Republic, Rehberg is one of Friess’ “favored candidates.”  Friess is also considering “a six- or seven-figure donation to the conservative Super PAC American Crossroads or its sister organization, Crossroads GPS.”

Crossroads recently aired an ad attacking Jon Tester that was so false, a Montana cable company pulled it off the air.

“Congressman Rehberg has earned support from Wall Street billionaire Foster Friess because they share an out-of-touch, extreme agenda,” said Ted Dick, Executive Director of the Montana Democratic Party.  “Thanks to the Citizens United decision, Friess can spend whatever he wants trying to buy votes for Dennis Rehberg.  That’s because Congressman Rehberg supports tax loopholes that benefit millionaires–even when it means cutting Medicare, Social Security and education.”

Crossroads GPS has already spent hundreds of thousands to pay for false attack ads in Montana, following the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling.

Congressman Rehberg supports secret financing of elections. The organization Citizens United endorsed Rehberg in September, giving him a $10,000 contribution. And earlier this month, Rehberg was caught hiding more than $20,000 he took from Washington lobbyists.