Fired for Being Too Much Like ‘Ellen,’ Court Rules Employee Can Sue

That “Ellen” thing. That is essentially why Heartland Inns of America fired Brenna Lewis, according to Ms. Lewis. But, as reported last week by the Courthouse News Service, Ms. Lewis may have the last word.

An Iowa hotel clerk who describes herself as “slightly more masculine” can sue her former employer for allegedly firing her because she wasn’t pretty enough and she lacked “the Midwestern girl look,” a panel of judges on the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled.

Twenty years ago, it would not have happened, but last week the nation’s top military officer declared to Congress that permitting gay servicemen and women to openly serve is “the right thing to do.”

Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and chief military adviser to President Barack Obama, acknowledged that while there are many opposing viewpoints about ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ (DADT), its day has come. It’s time to play Taps.

No one except a few insiders has seen it. Yet a ``Celebrate Family, Celebrate Life'' ad featuring football star Tim Tebow and paid for by a conservative Christian group is already perhaps the most hotly debated Super Bowl commercial ever.

When the 30-second ad finally airs in the first quarter of Sunday's CBS telecast _ at a cost estimated at $2.5 million _ it's expected to show the devout quarterback and his mother, Pam, sharing the story of how she gave birth to him in the Philippines in 1987 after spurning a doctor's advice to have an abortion for medical reasons.

The 22nd National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change was held this past weekend at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel in, Texas.

Produced by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the annual forum has come to be known as the Creating Change Conference. LGBT leaders consider it the nation’s pre-eminent political, leadership and skills-building conference for the social justice movement.

The biggest open secret in the landmark trial over same-sex marriage being heard in San Francisco is that the federal judge who will decide the case, Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker, is himself gay.

Many gay politicians in San Francisco and lawyers who have had dealings with Walker say the 65-year-old jurist, appointed to the bench by President George H.W. Bush in 1989, has never taken pains to disguise - or advertise - his orientation.

The bullying by classmates and taunts of ``homo'' only got worse after Jacob began dyeing his hair and wearing eyeliner in eighth grade. One student scrawled ``I hope you die'' on his shoe, he said; another drew a pocket knife on him.

Jacob's grades dropped, and he missed school from fear. His father tried repeatedly to get school officials in their working-class village in upstate New York to help protect his son from harassment. The response by the Mohawk Central School District, according to a federal lawsuit, was to do ``virtually nothing.''