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February 5, 2011

NBJC e-digest




NBJC E-Digest

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NBJC On the Move

NBJC Board Member, Kylar W. Broadus, Recieves The Susan J. Hyde Activism Award for Longevity in the Movement

Take Action!

CDC Fact Sheet: HIV and AIDS Among African Americans

Get Tested: Know Your Status

Highlights of the Week

"LGBTs Mark Black History Month" –

The Rev. Irene Monroe Writes About the Omission of LGBT People from Black History Month

Black LGBTs Among First 20 Honored in Castro History Project

David Kato: Man Arrested Over Murder of Ugandan Gay Activist

Remembering David Kato, a Gay Ugandan and a Marked Man

Why Homosexuality in Africa is a Death Sentence

Cleric Disrupts Funeral for Murdered Gay Activist

Black Leader Condemns Kato Murder

DADT Repeal to Move Quickly

Gays Seeking Asylum in U.S. Encounter a New Hurdle

Governor Signs Gay Civil Unions Law

Eddie Long's "Speak No Evil" Strategy Seems to be Working

A Chicken Chain’s Corporate Ethos Is Questioned by Gay Rights Advocates

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Mission Statement

The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) is a civil rights organization dedicated to empowering Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. NBJC's mission is to eradicate racism and homophobia


Dear Tom,

“Let each person do his or her part. If one citizen is unwilling to participate, all of us are going to suffer. For the American idea, though it is shared by all of us, is realized in each one of us.”

Last year, NBJC opened Black History Month with that quote from the venerable heroine Barbara Jordan, and its words are particularly relevant as we reflect on our challenges and look ahead with hope.

Last week, Ugandan LGBT activist, David Kato, was brutally murdered, and his death continues to weigh heavily on all of our hearts. The New York Times called Kato the “founding father of Uganda's nascent gay rights movement,” and he was a proud, openly gay voice in a country whose LGBT population is under siege by violent, deadly anti-LGBT violence.

Next week, we will recognize National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on Monday, February 7. HIV/AIDS continues to disproportionately impact the African American community, further proving the old saying that “when White America has a cold, Black America has the flu.”

NBJC shares Barbara Jordan’s vision. We are actively participating in coalitions and joining partnerships to produce affective ways to assist our Black LGBT brothers and sisters in Uganda and to increase education on HIV/AIDS in the African American community, especially among young people. To keep up with NBJC's work on these and other issues, please visit or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Onward and upward,

lettman signature



Sharon J. Lettman-Hicks

Executive Director


edigest on the move

NBJC Board Member, Kylar Broadus, Receives the Susan J. Hyde Activism Award for Longevity in the Movement

[object Object]Kylar W. Broadus–a professor, attorney and activist–is on the faculty at Lincoln University of Missouri, a historically black college, where he previously served as chair of the business department. Kylar maintains a general practice of law in Columbia, Missouri. He served as chair of the Board of Directors of the National Black Justice Coalition from 2007 until 2010. He has served on the Board of Directors of the National Stonewall Democrats since 1998. He wrote the essay “The Evolution of Employment Discrimination Protections for Transgender People,” published in “Transgender Rights,” edited by Currah, Juang, Minter, 2006. He is a founding board member of the Transgender Law and Policy Institute and speaks and lobbies on the national, state and local levels in the areas of transgender and sexual orientation law and advocacy.  Kylar founded the Trans People of Color Coalition, the only national social justice organization serving transgender people of color. He served three terms on the City of Columbia Human Rights Commission and two terms on the board of the statewide GLBT advocacy group. While on the Human Rights Commission, Kylar worked for passage of a transgender-inclusive nondiscrimination ordinance. Kylar is featured in the film “Still Black: A Portrait of Black Transmen” and is a 2010 Rockwood Institute LGBTQ Fellow.  The award will be given on Sunday, February 6, at the National Conference on LGBT Equality–Creating Change–in Minneapolis, MN.


edigest take action

Monday, February 7, is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Visit the Center for Disease Control’s website to learn more about the impact of HIV/AIDS on the African American community.

CDC Fact Sheet

[object Object]HIV is a crisis in African American communities, threatening the health, well-being and potential of African American men and women across the United States. While prevention efforts have helped to maintain stability in the overall level of HIV infection among African Americans for more than a decade, African Americans continue to face the most severe burden of HIV and AIDS of all racial/ethnic groups in the nation. We cannot allow this crisis to continue.



Get Tested: Know Your Status

[object Object]“One of our greatest challenges with this initiative is to not only get Blacks tested, but to get them to come back for the results. We know how afraid someone feels if they have put themselves at risk and need to get in and take a test. We have to be brave and strong and walk in our fear and get the test and results.”

Find a testing center near you.


lgbt news this week

"LGBTs Mark Black History Month"

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February is Black History Month, and LGBTs in the Bay Area are among those reflecting on what's happened and where things are going in the broader community.

An upcoming event at the San Francisco LGBT Community Center will mark the month and celebrate the lives of figures who have paved the way.



The Rev. Irene Monroe Writes About the Omission of LGBT People from Black History Month –

[object Object]Black History Month is that time of year when the achievements and courage of people of African descent are acknowledged and celebrated. However, for decades now, Black History Month has not once acknowledged or celebrated the contributions of its lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities.

Our omission from the annals of black history would lead you to believe that the only shakers and movers in the history of people of African descent in the U.S. were and still are heterosexuals. And because of this heterosexist bias, the sheroes and heroes of LGBTQ people of African descent — like Pat Parker, Audre Lorde, Essex Hemphill, Joseph Beam, and Bayard Rustin, to name a few — are most known and lauded within a subculture of black life.



Black LGBTs Among First 20 Honored in Castro History Project –

[object Object]Fourteen men and six women have been chosen to be the first group of 20 LGBT luminaries to be honored with plaques along the sidewalks of the Castro, San Francisco's gay neighborhood, the Bay Area Reporter has learned.

The steering committee strived to select a representative sample of the LGBT community's gender and racial diversity. The honorees also represent a wide variety of backgrounds, from artists and activists to musicians and scientists.

The list includes three black men: civil rights activist Bayard Rustin; disco drag star Sylvester James (pictured); and the author James Baldwin.



David Kato: Man Arrested Over Murder of Ugandan Gay Activist – Guardian UK

[object Object]Police in Uganda have arrested a man over the murder of the activist David Kato, saying the killing was not related to his campaign for gay rights.

Enock Nsubuga was arrested yesterday in Mukono, outside Kampala, not far from where Kato was bludgeoned to death with a hammer in his home last week. A police spokesman said Nsubuga's confession proved the killing was unrelated to Kato's work as a campaigner in Uganda, where homophobia is widespread.


Remembering David Kato, a Gay Ugandan and a Marked Man – NY Times

We will not forget David Kato and his bravery. His life, his spirit, his work will reverberate throughout Africa, America, and everywhere justice is in need of brave hearts and gentle souls.



Why Homosexuality in Africa is a Death Sentence –

[object Object]Whether a person is openly gay or lesbian or not, in Uganda they face the threat of death. Ever since Christian evangelicals went to Uganda to teach them how to “cure” homosexuals, LGBT Ugandans have been threatened, attacked, and murdered. The Christian evangelicals had no real understanding of African culture and the consequences they unleashed have been lethal.



Cleric Disrupts Funeral for Murdered Gay Activist –

[object Object]The funeral for slain Ugandan activist, David Kato, was disrupted by a minister who yelled out homophobic phrases during the services. Hundreds of people attended, but “police had to intervene after a homophobic outburst from Anglican priest Thomas Musoke led to a scuffle midway through yesterday’s funeral, and Mr Musoke was escorted away.”



Black Leader Condems Kato Murder –

[object Object]Prominent pastor Calvin Butts of Abyssinian Church in Harlem has condemned the murder of David Kato and the rampant homophobia and anti-gay violence in Uganda. Rev. Butts is also Chairman of the National Black Leadership Commission and connects the dots between homophobia, stigma and the transmission of HIV. NBJC salutes Rev. Calvin Butts for standing up to injustice and standing on the side of love.



DADT Repeal to Move Quickly – Huffington Post

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Pentagon officials said Friday that the Department of Defense is moving to speed the rollback of "don't ask, don't tell," and that Defense Secretary Robert Gates has asked a top official to deliver a plan to "facilitate the timely and orderly realization" of that process by Feb. 4.

That plan will launch a lengthy waiting period before the military's ban on openly gay service members is fully erased, however, and in the meantime, gay service members may still be discharged. 



Gays Seeking Asylum in U.S. Encounter a New Hurdle – New York Times

[object Object]The very notion of “gay enough,” of course, or proving one’s sexuality through appearance, dress and demeanor, can be offensive — and increasingly androgynous fashions and the social trend known as metrosexuality have blurred identities in many people’s minds.

“Judges and immigration officials are adding a new hurdle in gay asylum cases that an applicant’s homosexuality must be socially visible,” said Lori Adams, a lawyer at Human Rights First, a nonprofit group, who advises people seeking asylum based on sexuality. “The rationale is that if you don’t look obviously gay, you can go home and hide your sexuality and don’t need to be worried about being persecuted.”



Pat Quinn Signs Civil Unions –

[object Object]Gov. Pat Quinn on Monday signed a law legalizing civil unions in Illinois, while some 900 members of the gay community and their supporters stood by. The bill gives homosexual couples recognition from the state and many marriage rights, including the power to decide medical treatment for a sick partner and the right to inherit a partner's property. Illinois law, however, still states that marriage is between a man and a woman and the civil unions are not recognized by the federal government.



Eddie Long's "Speak No Evil" Strategy Seems to be Working –

[object Object]The Bishop Eddie Long scandal presented a prime opportunity to openly address homosexuality in the black church as well as sexual misconduct and sexual molestation in the larger African-American community. Instead, it's being swept under the rug like so much other so-called "dirty laundry." Like the many other scandals, this one is also showing signs of fizzling out.



Chick-Fil-A – New York Times

[object Object]Nicknamed "Jesus chicken" by jaded secular fans and embraced by Evangelical Christians, Chick-fil-A is among only a handful of large American companies with conservative religion built into its corporate ethos. But recently its ethos has run smack into the gay rights movement. A Pennsylvania outlet’s sponsorship of a February marriage seminar by one of that state’s most outspoken groups against homosexuality lit up gay blogs around the country. Students at some universities have also begun trying to get the chain removed from campuses.


NBJC News is distributed by the National Black Justice Coalition.

For more information, please visit


The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) is a civil rights organization dedicated to the empowerment of Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and same gender loving (LGBTQ/SGL) people, including people living with HIV/AIDS.