Commonwealth of Kentucky Header with Children

We hope you enjoy our Newsletter and Updates. If you ever have content you want us to consider including, please contact us!  Kentucky Equality Federation is the Commonwealth's largest all-volunteer organization with 3 Independent member organizations and an additional 5 organizations as coalition partners!

Kentucky Equality Federation Public Relations and Media Director Josh Koch
Joshua Koch, the new President of Kentucky Equality Federation (read below)
The Commonwealth of Kentucky has been the focus of the nation and the world as the 1st Federal Hate Crimes Conviction was secured after Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer requested federal intervention.


The story made every major news outlet in the nation.  President Palmer gave his only on camera interview exclusively to Lex18 News. "I've spoken to newspapers and television stations nationally and globally that I didn't even know existed," stated Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer.


Kerry Harvey the U.S. Attorney stated:  "I think the case's notoriety may have derived in large part from the Kentucky Equality Federation efforts."



In November 2011 Kentucky Equality Federation, U.S. Department of Justice, and Kentucky prosecutors met in private about hate crimes in Southeastern Kentucky.  The U.S. Department of Justice - Community Relations Services provided mediation for Kentucky Equality Federation and the "media war" with Harlan County Commonwealth's Attorney Henry Johnson
"Kentucky Equality Federation will continue to monitor the conduct of everyone involved and will report any indifference to enforce the laws of this Commonwealth both to the U.S. Department of Justice as well as the Kentucky Court of Justice Judicial Conduct Commission," stated Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer. "Violent hate crimes do not just devastate the victim, they also send the message that some of our citizens are expendable, a message which will not be tolerated in our Commonwealth. We will not tolerate the slippery slope of allowing certain segments of our population to be victimized." 

The Kentucky Equality Federation demands that the Commonwealth of Kentucky defend Pennington, an innocent citizen who was kidnapped, beaten, threatened with rape, and who must now live in fear of his attackers, who are free to do as they please with no sort of restraint or intervention. 

"The integrity of Kentucky's criminal justice system is now under a microscope and jeopardized by abandoning such a man to the whims of four individuals with a demonstrated propensity toward extreme violence," stated Kentucky Equality Federation Vice President of Policy and Public Relations, Joshua Koch. "Pennington reports that attorneys for the defendants have badgered Pennington to drop charges or accept a summary judgment from the bench rather than seeking a jury trial, Pennington has been prevented from seeking an emergency protection order." 


Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer and Vice President of Policy & Public Relations Joshua Koch chastised the Harlan County Commonwealth's Attorney, Henry Johnson.  
--> Coincidentally, in the May 2012 primary, Mr. Johnson was unseated as the Commonwealth's Attorney after twenty (20) years of service.
Kentucky Equality Federation warns schools about school bullying
Kentucky Equality Federation warned Red Bird Mission School, Clay County Schools, and Grayson County Schools that immediate action must be taken to bring themselves into compliance with Kentucky school-bullying laws. 
"Kentucky Equality Federation has received multiple reports from each school," said Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer. "The problem is the lack of enforcement and an lack of understanding of existing Kentucky school bullying laws. From Principals and Guidance Counselors to Teachers, they are not aware of the Commonwealth's existing school bullying laws, which was confirmed today after speaking to multiple parents and a County Attorney."

Palmer continued:  "We have reports that some children have attempted suicide: School officials have contacted parents stating they found razor marks on a teenager's arm. Another was preparing to take a lethal dose of acetaminophen, along with other deliberate self injuries. These students are being offensively labeled as fat, fa--ot, grease monkey, wetback, sl-t, and ni--er just to name a few. As if this hate speech wasn't enough, some victims are also being pushed into lockers, held against their will in restrooms, and tripped down stairs. The situation has gotten out of control, and, if these school authorities will not protect their students, we will seek legal protection for them. That this goes on unchallenged by authority figures is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated any further." (press release) 
Kentucky Equality Federation condemns Clear Channel Radio; apologize to the gay community for comparing them to the KKK; Board of Directors overrides the Office of the President

Kentucky Equality Federation management had no intention of filing an FCC complaint since the radio host resigned.  However, Kentucky Equality Federation's Board of Directors overrode the decision of the Office of the President (the President, Vice President, and Senior Political Consultants) and ordered an FCC complaint:

On March 26, 2012, Leland Conway, spoke in favor of permitting Hands On Original to refuse service to another organization which hosts the Lexington Pride Festival, comparing the entire LGBTI community of Kentucky to a hate group, and not just any group, a group responsible for cross burnings, beatings, Black community suppression, intimidation, and terrorism. 

Kentucky Equality Federation Central Kentucky Regional Director Jeff Johnson reiterated that Kentucky Equality Federation has no intention of getting involved in a dispute between the Gay and Lesbian Services Organization (GLSO) and Hands On Original. A complaint was filed and is best decided by the Lexington Human Rights Commission of any legal wrongdoing. The LGBTI community will however remember the decision of Hands On Original ownership whether or not they are found to be in violation of a local city ordinance.

At Kentucky Equality Federation the six (6) member Board of Directors is an independent supervisory Board. The President is an ex-officio member of the Board but may only vote to break a tie. Both Republicans, Democrats, and Independents voted unanimously to order the Office of the President to file a complaint.

The complaint was filed today electronically in accordance with the U.S. Paperwork Reduction Act: Acknowledgement of Submission from Kentucky Equality Federation on 04/05/2012, Reference Number: 12-C00387121.  FCC Submission Confirmation: 2000E

Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer stated:  "The Office of the President will enforce and follow Board policy, resolutions, and administrative regulations regardless of personal feelings, that is our job as officers of the corporation as well as volunteers. The LGBTI community is not a hate group, we never have been and any comparison is unacceptable. However, after Conway announced his departure, management decided to drop the issue because our resources are spread to the limit with multiple hate crimes, multiple school bullying complaints in which the Principal did not follow Kentucky law and report the bullying to the County Attorney, and over a dozen discrimination complaints in employment around the Commonwealth. However, we will proceed as ordered and redistribute resources accordingly."

The Board of Directors deferred to an original internal statement from the Office of the President by Vice President Joshua Koch to proceed:

Clear Channel Radio is the corporate operator of the Lexington cluster of stations in question. Under normal circumstance, an individual is entitled to free speech and assembly. However, there are limits to this. For instance, slander, libel, and incitement to violence cross the line. How much more so on a radio station? While the LGBTI community cannot be slandered, in the legal sense, due to its size, comparing the community as a whole to a hate group such as the KKK is decidedly not "in the public interest," the terms of the broadcast license. At Kentucky Equality Federation we are obligated, for the community, to respond.

Such terms are loaded with implicit connotation and cultural coding. Whether or not this is "inflammatory" entertainment or not, it denigrates a vast swath of innocent people that Kentucky Equality Federation defends. 

This is demagoguery, but it is worse than simply overstating a case to the court of public opinion. This was done under the cover of an analogy, but there is no excuse for this behavior.

This is the purposeful use of a monopolized radio market, supposedly administered in the public interest, for the targeting and smearing of an entire community. Such outlandish behavior will not be tolerated.

Kentucky Equality Federation Vice President of Policy & Public Relations Joshua Koch stated: "As part of the Office of the President I respect and support President Jordan Palmer as well as our Board of Directors and we will proceed as ordered. (press release)
Michigan-based neo-Nazi group's rally at Kentucky's Capitol
The Kentucky Equality Federation did NOT participate in the counter-protest of the neo-Nazi group, the National Socialist Movement from Michigan on April 21.

"We agree with Governor Beshear that they have a right to rally, according to the Constitution, but their appearance is certainly not welcome," stated Kentucky Equality Federation Vice President of Policy & Public Relations Joshua Koch.

Koch continued: "It should be noted that this roving band of miscreants are not native to the Commonwealth of Kentucky. While we will continue to confront and have confronted active hate groups here in Kentucky, we see no need to give this out-of-state sideshow any more attention than it has already received.

This group is a foreign nuisance and does not embody Kentucky values nor is it representative of typical Kentuckians. As such, we will choose to ignore it and work on real issues impacting the Commonwealth such as continuing to prepare our lawsuit against multiple Kentucky school districts, existing and pending hate crimes, and dozens of other school bullying and discrimination reports across the Commonwealth.

We ask other community members to refuse the confrontational environment which will give them the attention they crave. If no one shows-up to counter protest, it will be an embarrassment to the National Socialist Movement.

As a matter of policy we treat all hate groups, including last-years visit by the Westboro Baptist Church the same, we ignore them and deny them the attention they so desperately seek.

We ask the media to accurately portray them as a non-native street-theater act trying to foment discord in a state far from their own homes. Again, we ask all other citizens of Kentucky to ignore them for what they are: Foreign hatemonger's with nothing better to do on a Saturday afternoon than invade our Capitol with the sole purpose of being confrontational and obnoxious."

Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the Southern Poverty Law Center in Alabama described the group as the nation's largest neo-Nazi movement. "These are people who do nothing but go around and stir up trouble." (press release)
Pastor's support of gays, lesbians leads to church leaving Baptist association
Kentucky Equality Federation applauded the decision of the Central Baptist Church of Lexington to end its affiliation with the Elkhorn Baptist Association, a member of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) due to the Convention's position on gay and lesbian people. (press release) - (news story)
Statement from Kentucky Equality Federation President Joshua Koch:

Lexington drivers have been subjected to an offensive and divisive message. Bluegrass Church of Christ posted a billboard condemning the LGBTI community and abortion using Old Testament references.

While we respect the right to free speech, we condemn Bluegrass Church of Christ for leaving out other parts of the Bible, a practice known as "prooftexting" in some Christian circles. There are plenty of passages extolling good behavior, such as helping the widow and orphan, aiding the sick, and forgiving others.

Likewise, there are portions of the Bible which also contain stories of graphic violence and practices which we question today. For instance, there are plenty of passages which describe beating people to death with rocks for minor crimes, amputating limbs for petty offences, endorsing polygamy, allowing incest to go unpunished, and recommending genocide and repression of women and certain ethnic groups. Is the Bluegrass Church of Christ prepared to endorse these Bible passages?

This is a grandstanding attempt by a local church to divide Lexington's community and to provide moral cover for discrimination, asserting that homosexuality is somehow anti-God and making a vague comparison of homosexuality to murder.

Recently, a lesbian couple was kept out of a prom at a religious school for having the bravery to acknowledge their own identities. If the faith community of Lexington continues to silently tolerate this public humiliation and discrimination of the LGBTI community in our area, it will have abandoned Christ's commandment to love your neighbor. 

We call on religious congregations and groups of all faiths in the Lexington area to forsake and condemn these discriminatory actions.

We, as the Kentucky Equality Federation, condemn this ongoing pattern of persecution which is being carried out in the name of religion.  (press release) - (news stories) 
Kentucky Equality Federation confirmed the following new volunteers:

 - The Interim Committee of Official and Permanent Membership seated Mr. Joshua Koch as President of Kentucky Equality Federation and its affiliates
 - Attorney Jillian Hall, Legal and Allies Outreach Director
 - Jody Gregory, Board of Directors
 - Fran Everage, Board of Directors

Thank you for your time, attention, and dedication to equality! 

Please forward this email to as many people as possible!  We need them on our email list!

For Equality,

Todd H. Melton, Jr.
Interim Chairman of the Board

Joshua Koch

Click here for a complete list of management and volunteers.
In This Issue:
First federal hate crime indictment handed down based on sexual orientation due to Kentucky Equality Federation president Jordan Palmer
Kentucky Equality Federation warns schools about school bullying
Kentucky Equality Federation condemns Clear Channel Radio; apologize to the gay community for comparing them to the KKK; Board of Directors overrides the Office of the President
Michigan-based neo-Nazi group's rally at Kentucky's Capitol
Pastor's support of gays, lesbians leads to church leaving Baptist association
Lexington police investigate disappearance of anti-gay, anti-abortion sign from billboard
Kentucky Equality Federation names NEW volunteers
Public Advocate
Financial Help

NOTE: You must subscribe to our official press releases and our official blog separately.

Follow Us
Find us on Facebook   Follow us on Twitter

View our videos on YouTube   Visit our blog

View my photos on flickr

Make a Donation   


Discrimination Reports III

Join Our Mailing List
Public Advocate
Part of Kentucky Equality Federation's Mission is to act as public advocate for citizens of the Commonwealth who suffer from discrimination, hate crimes, school and workplace bullying.  If you or someone you know needs our assistance, please contact our Discrimination, Hate Crimes, and School Bullying Committee directly.  Kentucky Equality Federation will be your advocate!
Financial Help
Kentucky Equality Federation also offers financial assistance to qualified individuals who need help paying for rent, utilities, life-saving medications, and other essential items as our budget permits.
Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer wrote an editorial to the Louisville Courier-Journal and the Lexington Herald-Leader.  Both editorials have been published. (more)  
Governor Beshear, DADT, and Love is Love:

 - Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear responds to Kentucky Equality Federation about the Equality Bill currently being considered by the Kentucky House and Senate. (more) 


 - Artist shares "Love is Love" music video with Marriage Equality Kentucky. (more) 

Support Equality

Kentucky Equality Federation Online Store 

Show your pride and support for equality by visiting our online store or making a donation below.  A portion of all purchases from our online store benefit Kentucky Equality Federation and we have hundreds of selections!

Make a Donation