Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« Academy Awards Live-Blog | Fucking Celebrities »

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Sunshine Hate

posted by on February 25 at 5:17 AM

Gay couple? Well, scratch Florida off your list of possible vacation options.

Janice Langbehn and Lisa Pond had planned to take their three children on a family cruise. The Olympia, Washington couple had been together 18 years and with their children were looking forward to the holiday.

But just as they were about to depart on the cruise from Miami, Florida. Pond, a healthy 39-year-old, suddenly collapsed. She was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami with Langbehn and the children following close behind.

But once Langbehn and the children arrived at the hospital the hospital refused to accept information from her about Ponds’s medical history. Langbehn says she was informed that she was in an antigay city and state, and she could expect to receive no information or acknowledgment as family.

A doctor finally spoke with Janice telling her that there was no chance of recovery.

Other than one five minute visit, which was orchestrated by a Catholic priest at Langbehn’s request to perform last rites, and despite the doctor’s acknowledgement that no medical reason existed to prevent visitation, neither she nor her children were allowed to see Pond until nearly eight hours after their arrival.

Soon after Pond’s death, Langbehn tried to get her death certificate in order to get life insurance and Social Security benefits for their children. She was denied both by the State of Florida and the Dade County Medical Examiner.

From the Olympian

Pond suffered the aneurysm just before the R Family Vacations cruise ship left Miami for the Bahamas in February, Langbehn said. After Pond was taken to the emergency room, Langbehn said she was informed by a social worker that they were in an “anti-gay state” and that they needed legal paperwork before Langbehn could see Pond.

Even after a friend in Olympia faxed the legal documents that showed that Pond had authorized Langbehn to make medical decisions for her, Langbehn said she wasn’t invited to be with her partner or told anything about her condition.

Langbehn is suing.

RSS icon Comments


Just when you think the state of Florida couldn't be more stupid, this shit happens. Since Florida is anti-gay, does this mean if I go to Disney World for vacation, Mickey Mouse is going to assault me with homophobic slurs?

Posted by Eddie | February 25, 2008 5:46 AM

That's really, really heartbreaking. I can only hope that the kids are too young to understand the social implications of what happened until much later in life--because, damn. Pass the salt and the lemon juice, please.

Posted by Christin | February 25, 2008 6:03 AM

Jesus Christ! Fuck you Florida.

Posted by Michigan Matt (soon to be Baltimatt) | February 25, 2008 6:12 AM

GALA, the worldwide gay and lesbian chorus association, is holding its international convention in Miami in July. Swell.

Posted by MyDogBen | February 25, 2008 6:23 AM

As a former Agent (and then Executor) of a couple's estate, I would think Ms. Langbehn has considerable cause for a suit - providing her Durable Powers were Broad (as well as Medical) as per the instructions of Ms. Pond, the Principal. My attorney advised no less than four signatures of witness on any such document for gay couples for the very reason(s) of this sad story.

Posted by Laurence Ballard | February 25, 2008 6:30 AM

....pouring my Orange Juice down the sink in preparation to boycott all things Florida.

Posted by Bryce Beamish | February 25, 2008 6:30 AM

It can be easy to forget sometimes, with their mad scramble for tourist dollars, but Florida is still very much the South.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | February 25, 2008 6:33 AM

What the fuck? How messed up is this country where things like this still happen? It's sickening and heartbreaking. I hope she sues their dumb asses and wins.

Posted by ms bono | February 25, 2008 6:40 AM

And speaking of tourist dollars, if you're gay, you would be well advised to give Jamaica a wide berth as well.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | February 25, 2008 6:48 AM

isnt that a fuckin gay cruise? why are they leaving out of florida?

Posted by um | February 25, 2008 6:55 AM

Focus on the family and please think of the children! Unless of course those children happen to have two mommies. In that case, fuck'em!


Posted by bearseatbeats | February 25, 2008 6:56 AM

My condolences to the Langbehn-Pond family. What a horrible loss.

Posted by Charity Froggenhall | February 25, 2008 7:07 AM

And well she should sue. This makes me so angry.

Posted by Greg | February 25, 2008 7:24 AM

Fuck Florida. Omg, coffee.

Posted by Mr. Poe | February 25, 2008 7:30 AM

The 49 states and Florida. They should change their name to Jebland.

Posted by Heather | February 25, 2008 7:35 AM

Another reason for universal, government regulated health care. This would never happen in Canada where hospitals don't behave like their own private little fiefdoms.

I can't fathom this gay hatred, I really can't. I'm not usually in favour of lawsuits (since it will be the passed on the the people paying for healthcare) - I hope this story is horrible enough that it creates the political will FEDERALLY so that this never happens again. Who in congress would champion this cause?

Posted by DCrowe | February 25, 2008 7:41 AM

"Anti-gay city and state" Holy Shit, did they really say that? Sadly this changes nothing about my opinion of Florida.

Posted by gillsans | February 25, 2008 7:46 AM

@17 - I agree. I can't fucking believe they actually said that...that anyone could say that to someone, much less a medical professional saying that to someone whose wife is dying. Fuck!! I hope she wins and fucks Florida the fuck over.

Posted by Elizabeth | February 25, 2008 7:58 AM

this later bit from the Olympian article is the creepiest:
"Langbehn said attitudes changed when doctors in charge of organ donation recognized Langbehn and Pond as a couple. They accepted Langbehn’s signature on the consent forms, she said. They also allowed the children to visit with their mother, who was kept on life support while organ matches were found."

Posted by ironymaiden | February 25, 2008 7:58 AM

Vicious cruelty is the "Christian" way people. Read your history books. This is the kind of America we've been voting for. And now, thanks to that knuckle head Nader, we'll be getting more of the same. Question is, who's next? They never stop at persecuting just one group.

Posted by Vince | February 25, 2008 8:05 AM

See people? This is why we need a litigious society. Because we have no government group that will force people to respect the rights of others as well as a lawsuit will.

The government no longer cares about the violation of personal rights, as it is so busy eroding them. Illegal wiretapping anyone?

Oh yes, and Fuck Florida.

Posted by Just Some Guy | February 25, 2008 8:08 AM

(an image from the old Warner Brothers cartoon of Bugs Bunny sawing off the state of Florida and letting it float away comes to mind...)

Posted by Andy Niable | February 25, 2008 8:11 AM

Sue the living fuck out of 'em. That is reprehensible.

Posted by Rujax! | February 25, 2008 8:20 AM

Y'know, it's not like you can't read about the state's regressive, homophobic laws in about 40 million places.

I've got friends who visit the state with their kid semi-annually. They can rationalize around all the crap directed at gays at even the state level.

I wouldn't set foot in it, personally.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | February 25, 2008 8:24 AM

GALA needs to make a decision. Publicly. Shame the asswipes, and hurt them financially. Florida is a toilet, and people need to hear why.

Posted by Fnarf | February 25, 2008 8:47 AM

What makes this even more cruel is that if it had just been two presumably straight women or men traveling together, they would never have pulled this shit.

Just the thought that they would let someone die alone because of their objection to their "lifestyle" shows how fucked in the head they are.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | February 25, 2008 9:10 AM

Climate change can't accelerate fast enough to put that shithole under water for good.

Posted by Joe M | February 25, 2008 9:14 AM

Sue all responsible until the hospitals are forced to change by their own insurance companies.

Posted by LMSW | February 25, 2008 9:34 AM

Wow, this just makes me lose all hope for humanity. It's bad enough that our government finds it acceptable that a class of people could be denied these rights, but to imagine a human being looking another person in the face and saying, no, I'm sorry, we cannot tell you what is happening to your partner, nor will you be allowed to see her before her death. It's just heartbreaking....

That being said, I have to wonder whether there is a way around these regulations. How closely do hospitals check the identity of relatives? Could she have just said that she was her sister? Ridiculous that you would have to do such a thing, of course, but then at least she would have been able to see her immediately.

Posted by Julie | February 25, 2008 9:42 AM

And how does this story relate to Ralph Nader?

Posted by KeeKee | February 25, 2008 9:42 AM

If bigots like Ken Hutcherson had their way, this sort of incident would be occurring here in Washington all the time.

Posted by Hernandez | February 25, 2008 9:49 AM

Okay, while this is reprehensible, it is NOT strictly a "Christian" ideal. It is an EXTREMEIST "Christian" ideal. Because if you READ your textbooks, you would make note that in the Middle Ages Christianity was actually quite friendly to both women and gays. If anything, you should be blaming the Puritians. It is the Puritians who are to blame!!...

Or, hell, this stuff happens. It's sad and reprehensible, but it's also just how red tape and legality work. The hospital is following procedure. Seriously, it's sad, not saying it's not! Not saying the woman SHOULDN'T sue, she should! But red tape abounds everywhere....

Posted by Marty | February 25, 2008 9:51 AM

I'm so disgusted by this story. Their new Gov., Charlie Crist, is rumored to be gay. That didn't stop him from signing on to the anti-gay marriage amendment. I don't understand this world. I don't understand how health care professionals, in the business of healing, could be so cold-hearted and cruel.

I'm going back to bed.

Posted by ahava | February 25, 2008 9:51 AM

@10 If you want to take a Caribbean cruise, particularly a seven day one, you have to leave out of the South. If you've got a couple weeks, you can leave out of New York or other cities in the Northeast.

However, if you're gay, the Caribbean is a pretty shitty place to go in general. Former Dutch colonies are working damned hard to avoid recognizing gay marriages, Jamaica is violently anti-gay, and the rest are just generally unfriendly. If you really want a cruise in a sunny place, do a Mexico cruise. It'll leave from California, and Mexico is significantly more gay friendly than any Caribbean island nation.

Posted by Gitai | February 25, 2008 9:59 AM

Mmm, Mexico IS a Caribbean nation. The "Riviera Maya" is lovely, and gay-friendly.

Posted by Fnarf | February 25, 2008 10:07 AM

My boyfriend, in a fit of unhappiness at the gray Seattle winters, said something offhand about moving to Florida. And I freaked out and told him not to even joke about that, that I wouldn't even VISIT Florida, much less ever live there. He was kind of shocked at how adamant I was, I think.

(We're a straight couple, BTW. But I won't go to a state like this).

Posted by exelizabeth | February 25, 2008 10:14 AM

I hope she bankrupts that backwater.

Posted by Michael | February 25, 2008 10:17 AM

I am a gay athiest living in South Florida. I dont like Florida for many reasons but I have the opposite hospital experience. Two years ago I drove my partner to Holy Cross hospital in Fort Lauderdale. In the emergency room they said he needed immediate surgery. We were both treated with dignity, respect and compassion the entire time. I was with him every moment including visitation hours, and in the emergency room and the pre-op room right up until he went into the OR. Throughout the experience I signed paperwork, discussed options with doctors, was given his jewelry and personal effects to hold and never once was made to feel uncomfortable. Also, he did not have insurance at the time. If two gay men (one without insurance) could have such a positive experience in a Catholic hospital in Florida, then I have to think hospitals must vary greatly here. Perhaps someone should compile various stories and make a list of gay friendly hospitals so that no one else has to go through what these women did.

Posted by I know, I know, but... | February 25, 2008 10:29 AM

Did they get married in Canada and then sue under NAFTA?

That's the only way to have it enforced - international treaties trump both federal and state laws - it's in the US Constitution.

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 25, 2008 11:33 AM

I hope she takes them for a billion dollars--they wouldn't even take a *medical history*! That's criminal negligence, even if they'd just been a pair of friends you should get as much knowledge of the patient as she had.

Fah! This is why we need gay marriage, so these families cannot be discriminated against; and we need it at a federal level to force the states to acknowledge it.

All that said, it's also reprehensible to wish destruction on all Floridians for the actions of some of them. This type of thinking is "us vs. them" tribalism without thought or rationality. Admittedly your wishes can't affect reality, but they make you petty people. Staying out of Florida, pressuring GALA to withdraw their dollars--those are rational and appropriate responses. Death for all, is not.

Posted by SpookyCat | February 25, 2008 1:30 PM

Damn, I guess that nurse - or whoever that was that said that - has never, EVER been to South Beach...

Posted by Geni | February 25, 2008 1:38 PM

While this is absolutely disgusting, and while I think FL politics are ass-backwards, I think the focus should be on the hospital itself. FL didn't deny the woman, the hospital staff did. It would be interesting if an investigation into this revealed the hospital has a policy against allowing same-sex partners in private areas. It would also be really sad if her partner had medical information that would have clued the staff in on her current condition to save her life.

This hospital should be deluged with emails and letters voicing disgust.

Side note: my partner of 10 years and I just booked a week vacation to FL to meet up with family at Easter. Too bad FL is going to see almost none of our money! We're staying at a relative's place, have use of their cars, and will be eating most meals in. Thanks for the sun and beaches, here's next to nothing in return! Screw you Jebland!

Posted by Compy | February 25, 2008 2:29 PM

I just don't get it... I just don't get how people can behave that way.

Posted by Samantha | February 25, 2008 3:21 PM

I'm originaly from florida-born and truly is a disgusting degenerate dark swamp ogf a place. a land of cultural desolation and hopelessness

I'm never going back

Posted by linus | February 25, 2008 3:32 PM

I don't blame anyone here for hating Florida. I know you're not wishing for my death. It's sad but true that the way things are done here is a crime. I moved here from Philly. I was warned once "not to get used to being here." They call northerners who move here "Damn Yankees." I didn't know about the prejudice here. I'm talking about racial, religious, geographical and all prejudices. Even Degrees from Northern Universities are disregarded here.

While only 1 story of many, what happened to this family is the worst. They should get billions and it should be national news.

The reason some are against FL is that these stories are becoming more common. Last year(?) there was a woman in Tampa who was raped. An attending nurse realized she had an arrest warrant (for something stupid) and called the police. She was arrested and a rape kit was not done. When asked why she didn't give the woman the Morning-After Pill, as prescribed by law, she replied, "I don't believe in that."

I know there are people like this all over the country but there seems to be a concentration of them down here. Employers included. It's all a power trip.

I'm so disgusted at the lack of humanity, I could just cry.

Posted by DamnYankee | February 25, 2008 7:37 PM

WHY the FAWK are ANY GTLB folk paying taxes?! I stopped in 2003, and will resume paying when I (we) have equal rights. We seriously need a national gay tax boycott.

Posted by John | February 26, 2008 9:58 AM

This story sickens me but sadly I am not surprised. Florida is Texas, Jr., with Jeb Bush and many of GWB's administration and campaign managers having been political figures in Florida. Texas and Florida are the two biggest anti-homosexual states. As Governor, GWB prosecuted homosexuals for sodomy, and Florida (with the exception of Dade County) is filled with aging retirees and Christian extremists. I do not understand why the gay population has been booming in either state, especially given the current Governor of Texas's latest remarks that "if homosexuality isn't just about sex, why is sex in the name". Simplistic, dumb, hate filled people...

@ exelizabeth, it is people like you that give me hope in humanity. Thank you for speaking and acting for a community that only wants to be accepted and loved, I wish more heterosexual couples and individuals were as intelligent and compassionate as you. God bless. :)

Posted by Cory | February 26, 2008 10:09 AM

This past Xmas my partner suggested a gift for us both a "Vacation"...3 choices....Europe...Great but, too expensive now
...Florida..I said HELL NO...If they want discrimination in thier Constitution, then we'll NEVER go there again,EFF them! So we're goin to Cancun.

Posted by Disgusted American | February 26, 2008 10:12 AM

Every time I hear about something like this, I thank God I moved out of Florida ten years ago.

And, yeah, she should sue them into oblivion. Both the hospital, and the specific staff members who did this to them.

Posted by hikitty | February 26, 2008 10:13 AM

Nothing but white trash, wrinkled skin, strip malls and small minds (oh and Ann Coulter).

I'm embarrassed by this state. I'll never visit again.

Posted by Chicago Jeff | February 26, 2008 10:21 AM

This is why you force your way into the room, WITH the children, and if necessary, get arrested.

Look up the phone numbers for the local TV stations' newsrooms to call when the police arrive. Use your cellphone's video camera. Alert the media that a couple WITH CHILDREN wasn't allowed to be together during the last minutes of life.

The video could be useful if you need to sue later.

My husband and I always travel with copies of our legal documents, and keep copies in our cars' gloveboxes, in case of an accident.

But I will also bitch and complain and kick and scream to high heaven if some pathetic little doctor or some mighty nurse thinks he or she can keep me away from my partner in a hospital. Hell yeah, I'll make a scene. And unless he's incapacitated, he will too.

Posted by tjc | February 26, 2008 10:36 AM

Jesus God. Call me a traitor or what have you. I want out of this country. What the hell is going on when people can be so completely lacking in compassion?

Posted by John the Craptist | February 26, 2008 10:37 AM

Living here in S. FL., I can appreciate the sentiment on here. But fact is that S. FL in all it's oddness and I'll admit some weird backwards ways of dealing with things, is pretty much it's own place compared to the rest of the state. What the lady was told about this being an "anti-gay" state, tells me that that person saying that to some extent was sympathetic but couldn't do anything because of hospital protocol. Does it make it right, no. But the fact is that a lot of us here are really trying to turn the rest of the state around, and MANY people in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale area are pretty live and let live. Sure S***t happens, s***t happens everywhere though.

Posted by C. Rangel | February 26, 2008 10:38 AM

Alternatively, you lie and say you're brothers or sisters. Or just leave it at "yes, we're family."

Posted by tjc | February 26, 2008 10:42 AM

I live in Fort Lauderdale right now. In the past week we've had at least 2 hate crimes. A 16-year-old man, well boy, who was gay and was wearing women's clothes was killed on the street. Also a gay couple were attacked outside of an all-night restaurant.

Be careful if you come here.

Posted by Sad_in_South_Florida | February 26, 2008 10:43 AM

This just doesn't sound right. I have been an ER nurse for over 12years...worked all over the country, including the deep south.
I have never heard anything like this. Esp in cases where death is eminent.
Every patient, except in cases of cardiac arrest or severe trauma where lots of activity are occurring, or if family is causing disturbances, is allowed at least 1person to be at their bedside.
Even working in Mississippi, gay partners are allowed at the bedside. I can't fathom someone, esp in Miami, saying "sorry you are in an antigay city." Miami is as gay as they come.
Where I work now...even husbands/wifes, adult children of invalid parents are not allowed to sign medical forms for each other without a valid power of attorney.
I just think there is something missing to this story. An ER would never keep children from a dying parent.

Posted by Phillip | February 26, 2008 10:43 AM

If this story is accurate you may want to contact Marvin O’Quinn at

Marvin O’Quinn is the president of the Public Health Trust and chief executive officer of Jackson Health System. He earned his master’s in health administration and his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Washington in Seattle.

Posted by Rev. James W. Hensley | February 26, 2008 10:44 AM

New Jersey may have its problems but at least I feel fairly confident that I would never be treated like that in a hospital. Even if a hospital did, I know I at least I have some recourse since sexual orientation has been part of law against discrimination since 1972 here.

We may not be the prettiest or the cleanest but at least I feel treated like a human being here. I can't imagine living somewhere where they have such a callous and blatant disregard for human life.

Posted by Ed | February 26, 2008 10:47 AM

My hubby and I always travel with our legal documents -- in the suitcase. Best to have them on us somewhere instead. All you have to do is show them the document then start moving towards your spouse. They cannot deny you access to them to ascertain their care to make informed decisions. If you need others' (family) support to make those decisions, then anyone else must be allowed access (within reason as you can't have forty people in a tiny hospital alcove).

Alas, a power of atty is probably useless in a foreign country.

Posted by Pecos Bill | February 26, 2008 10:52 AM

Ok, that's just fucked up! I must live in the nice part of FL then, because I've never seen that sort of thing happen here, and my gay friends all say they like living here. One of my friends moved to NYC when he was in his 20's to be on Broadway, but is now back here in Orlando. He had a blast living in NYC and starring in some Broadway shows (some of those shows won Tony's!), but that he's glad to be back home. He seems to think that there are lots of neat things here. I guess a person's opinion of FL really depends on where you live/visit.
The closest I've ever come to seeing discrimination was when this religious prep school (I think they were Baptist, but this was a while ago, so I don't really remember) wouldn't allow it's high-school students to put on "La Cage aux Folles", since the school said it "promoted homosexuality", which was considered a sin. But people in the theatre community all banded together, and these kids were allowed to do their show in another theatre that wasn't associated with the school, so it all ended well.

Posted by Anna | February 26, 2008 1:36 PM

I think that it is sad to read all of these comments bashing Florida in a Seattle newspaper blog when a very similar thing happened in Seattle last year:

"Water flooded the basement of the couple's Madison Valley house last Dec. 14, and trapped Fleming in her recording studio.

Medics rushed the 41-year-old to Harborview Medical Center, where a social worker followed state law and barred Strong from entering Fleming's room.

While Fleming and Strong had celebrated their love in a commitment ceremony, they were not legally related."

I'm proud to live in Key West, FLORIDA. Our official motto is "One Human Family," we have domestic partnerships through the city that are recognized by the hospital, we had the nation's first openly gay elected mayor, were among the first in the nation to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and have over 500,000 GLBT tourists a year.

Judging an entire state by one person's very unfortunate experience in a hospital ignores the significant amount of progress made in both Florida and the Seattle area for gay and lesbian people.

Should the world judge Seattle by this?:

February 14, 2008
Antigay Attacks on Rise in Seattle

The Capitol Hill section of Seattle has seen a recent spike in malicious harassment incidents targeting gays and transgender people, according to The Seattle Times.

In October, a transgender woman was walking down Broadway Avenue when she was approached by a man. He immediately demanded to know whether she was "a man" and proceeded to call her names and motion as if he were going to hit her. The man, later identified as Charles Schewe, has been arrested and is awaiting sentencing.

Several other incidents in which perpetrators have shouted antigay epithets or assaulted gay men have been reported in the past 12 months and are being investigated. (The Advocate)

Posted by Ian | February 26, 2008 1:43 PM

I would hope that besides suing, a complaint is filed with the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, requesting a review of the hospital for both egregious patient rights violations and for failure to adequately assess a patient. JCAHO accreditation is necessary for a hospital to receive payment from Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurers and can be lifted if a hospital is in violation of their standards. Perhaps if the hospital becomes aware that it will need to justify this behavior both to the public and to the Joint Commission, it will discourage both it and other hospitals from behaving so terribly, and, of course, fears of losing insurances may cause them to rethink their homophobia.

Posted by silverkjk | February 26, 2008 2:49 PM

Here is Jackson Memorial CEO's email to flood him with complaints:

Posted by johnny | February 26, 2008 2:57 PM

Florida is definitely anti-gay--and proud of it.

Believe it or not, I find Little Rock, my hometown, far more tolerant. Here, my partner and I have never had the experience of being yelled at as we ride bikes in our neighborhood. In one horrible year in Florida (never again!), we had f----t slurs yelled at us while biking. And we found that neighbors who harassed us about lawn care (while ignoring lawns much less tended than ours) had signed the petition to ban gay marriage in the state.

Worst of all, we had our jobs ended with no recourse for legal action in a Methodist-affiliated university. Florida is the pits for gay folks--no legal protection at all in most areas against discrimination, and churches that, on the whole, support the homophobia.

I'll take Little Rock any day.

Posted by Bill | February 26, 2008 3:00 PM

#41-- or Key West. Miami and KW are two of the gayest cities around.

But I agree with everyone else...FUCK FLORIDA.

Posted by weetabix | February 26, 2008 3:46 PM

Florida- this country- this government, it just all needs to end. It all appears uncorrectable when I see shit like this. Anyone else ready for a new United States?

Posted by brandy | February 26, 2008 5:26 PM

The University of Miami recently bought Jackson under the leadership of University President Donna Shalala. A long time advocate for gay & lesbian rights, Shalala should be making a public statement about this atrocity. Let her know you care

Posted by Ask | February 26, 2008 10:09 PM

This is absolutely awful and moral reprehensable! Though I am not gay, I support the rights and beliefs of others as I hope for the same in return. Luckly while I have been here in Orlando I have not seen the ugliness of the rest of Florida and being from Texas the same kind of ugliness in first right but I understand it being a black woman and I wish the best for those who have experienced such hate and hopefully justice will prevail!

Posted by Danielle | February 27, 2008 6:33 AM

This kind of thing can happen anywhere. Its horrible. "Fuck Florida" is just stupid. Florida is one of the most gay populated states. Use your anger to make a change. Write letters to lawmakers, make phone calls, become politically active. Support the gay community.

Posted by PLo | February 27, 2008 10:39 AM

I agree with #69. While many of you don't like FL don't say "Fuck FL". There are many that live here that enjoy it. I personally live in the Orlando area and work for a company that employs many gays and gives the same benefits to domestic partners as to those of us who are married. Personally I feel that all the anger should be directed at the person who spoke to the partner and the hospital. The hospital is the one saying that they don't recognize the partnership not the state of FL. I think this could have happened to any couple that may not be legally married in the eyes of the law.
I would like to send my condolences to the family, especially the children.

Posted by Jenn | February 27, 2008 11:04 AM

Living in Florida, I find this hilarious. There's enough queers in South Florida to fill Dolphin Stadium several times over. Gay clubs, restaurants, and other businesses are everywhere, some so open that they paint their facades in rainbow colors. Disney has an annual "Gay Day" that draws many thousands. How the hell is this not gay-friendly?

This is a tale of ignorance and pettiness by the hospital staff. They should be strung up and given the lash.

Posted by Alex | February 27, 2008 3:02 PM

Yeahaaaww.... I usually have a problem jumping on the mob bandwagon, but this time I've got no annoying moral voice saying "no". Sue the shit out of them; the Lesbians are more Christian then the hypocrits working in that hospital... lets keep these jokes and parodies going on. Can't wait for Bush to get kicked out and see America return to the separation of Church and state.

Posted by Dave | February 27, 2008 5:01 PM

I am a gay resident of Tampa, Florida and have to say that every single comment made in reference to Florida is totally dignified. What happened in Miami was an embarassment to every Floridian that lives here! Rest assured, I will provide both positive and negative in this and also I will not begin to tell anyone to change their vacation plans or their ideas of Florida.

Both my partner and I have lived here for the last 4 years. In living here, we have found some real assholes and then we have found some of the most kind, genuine, and endearing people you would ever wish to meet. In stating this, you can find this anywhere, as I am sure you could find this in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, New York, or wherever your trip takes you.

Just in Tampa, we have vibrant neighborhoods that the gays have brought up. Hyde Park, Seminole Heights, and now Ybor City (which is almost a throw back to San Francisco's Castro).

In all of this, we have supportive city leadership. The link enclosed can show you how our city's mayor made a quick stand in support of gays and told the county to go eff themselves.

This story is one of the many heartbreaks that have occur and this is where I start the negative slant. Florida has the extremely ugly, anti-gay adoption ban. This came about because of fear and intolerance from the hateful bigot, Anita Bryant. We have had to live and deal with this for years.

The governor, Charlie Crist, of our state has stated that issues of property tax and insurance should be more of a focus with Amendment 2 hitting the ballots.

Don't know what Amendment 2 is? Well, I am sure you are all educated enough to do the research and from there, I know what you want to do.

Onto some positive. My partner and I have been able to walk hand in hand in Ybor City, Epcot-Disney World, and in Key West. No one has uttered a word. People see it and no one cares.

Anyway, I thought I would relay this. What happened does not diminish the fact that it was wrong. When all the facts come out, a lawsuit should be the first thing to happen. Suing the state will also send the strong message, straight to governor's office. But whether you hate Florida or not, we are all gay and we all have to fight the same fight.

Posted by Steven | February 27, 2008 5:15 PM

Oh, and did I happen to leave out something very pertinent? I think I did. My partner works, as an RN, for one of the largest and most reknown hospitals in Tampa. It is Tampa General Hospital. It is the largest hospital between Atlanta and Miami and they happen to respect their gay staff so much that they offer domestic partner benefits. Not all hospitals are bad and rest assured, if you or your partner ends up in our neck of the woods and have to go to this hospital, the staff will not treat you as dismally. Oh yes, the city of Tampa has domestic partner benefits, but I digress far too much. You can really make up your own mind on things.

Posted by Steven | February 27, 2008 5:31 PM

I fucking hate Florida, and I'm ashamed I was born there.

For those that have never been to Florida, YES, 99% of them are hatemongering prejudiced racist homphobic asshole MORONS. The other 1% are only hatmongering racist asshole morons, because they live in Key West.

Posted by L | February 27, 2008 6:21 PM

It is so sad that children would be denied seeing a parent they love just because that parent is gay. Shame on Florida but most importantly SHAME ON the nurses and doctors involved. No matter the rules you don't keep a child from a dying parent unless it would cause harm to the child. In this case it sounds like they purposely did something that will definitely cause harm to the children for a lifetime. Hatred has been instilled in them and hopefully their remaining parent will be able to help them through this life altering experience. It is sad that society has become such that we have so many rules and laws that we can use to hide behind while discriminating against another human being.

Posted by tess1960 | February 27, 2008 7:07 PM

I personally think it's a great idea for homosexuals and liberals to boycott Florida. If you don't come down here, we don't have to put up with you. We both win.

I question the accuracy of the info presented here, and note that there can be other explanations other than the "ZOMG HICKS!!!1" knee-jerk response. For instance, note that there are no direct quotes. That means that the anti-gay statement which has caused so much angst is a paraphrase. Seriously people!

Posted by InRussetShadows | February 28, 2008 6:57 AM

Re InRussetShadows

"I personally think it's a great idea for homosexuals and liberals to boycott Florida. If you don't come down here, we don't have to put up with you. We both win."

You are so right! Maybe we wont have to wait in line so long when we go to Disney World, Sea World, or Bush Gardens :-)

Posted by Billy | February 28, 2008 10:27 AM

Dont know but South Florida seems to overly gay, The counties allow same sex registration, many of not most offer some sort of same sex benefits. So, how is a place like Seattle better in terms of gay rights and advancement?

Posted by danny | March 3, 2008 6:41 PM

Comments Closed

In order to combat spam, we are no longer accepting comments on this post (or any post more than 14 days old).