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2012 Olympics: Who Are The LGBT Athletes? Day Nine – Pia Sundhage

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This is the ninth in a series of articles profiling known out and proud Olympic athletes who are openly LGBT. The New Civil Rights Movement will publish one article each day as we move into the London 2012 Olympics.


June 30, after the U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) defeated Canada 2-1 in a 2012 Olympic Send-Off Match in Sandy, Utah, Pia Sundhage said, “We are ready… I only have good things to say about the team. We are full of confidence and we’ll have fun at the Olympics.”

In June, 2010, it was the same confidence that led then 49-year-old Pia Sundhage, the Swedish head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, to come out as gay on Swedish TV. After singing Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are a-Changin,” Sundhage said, “There has been no problem for me to be openly gay as head coach in the U.S.” During her interview with TV host Lasse Bengtsson, she also disclosed that she has a girlfriend named Mari.

Well, times sure have changed since Sundhage began kicking the ball around. “I started when I was five or six and had to play with boys because there were no girls’ or women’s teams. But I was always one of the first to be picked.”

Her playing skills earned her a place on the national squad when she was only 15. “It was in 1975 against England and we won 2-0 in Gothenburg. The national coach rang me up and I read a report in the paper too, which was obviously a very big thing for me at 15. But I wasn’t nervous because I had quite good technical skills, more so than some of the others, and that made me comfortable with the group.” She went on to become a national hero.

The confidence and talent that distinguished Sundhage’s playing is reflected in her coaching. After a distinguished career in her native Sweden, she became an assistant with the Philadelphia Charge in 2001. A year later she was named head coach of the Boston Breakers, only the second female coach in Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA) history. Sundhage was named Coach of the Year in her first season.

After a short time as an assistant to the Chinese National Team In 2007, Sundhage became the first foreign head coach of our WNT. Under Sundage, the team won the 2008 Algarve Cup in Portugal as well as the gold medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

And it is Sundhage’s determination and confidence in her players’ abilities that has helped make the USWNT, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association’s (FIFA’s) top-ranked women’s soccer team with a great chance to win the Gold again in 2012.

Follow our series: “2012 Olympics: Who Are The LGBT Athletes?” as we profile all the out LGBT athletes playing in the London 2012 Olympic games.

 

Stuart Wilber. Photo by Mathew Ryan Williams

 

Stuart Wilber believes that living life openly as a Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender or Allied person is the most powerful kind of activism. Shortly after meeting his partner in Chicago in 1977, he opened a gallery named In a Plain Brown Wrapper, where he exhibited cutting edge work by leading artists; art that dealt with sexuality and gender identification. In the late 1980’s when they moved to San Clemente, CA in Orange County, life as an openly gay couple became a political act. They moved to Seattle 16 years ago and married in Canada a few weeks after British Columbia legalized same-sex marriage. Although legally married in some countries, they are only considered domestic partners in Washington State. Equality continues to elude him.

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BREAKING NEWS

Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor

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Donald Trump‘s attorney Evan Corcoran, who allegedly directed another Trump attorney to draft the false statement claiming all classified and sensitive documents had been returned, has been ordered to testify before a grand jury and hand over documents and records to Special Counsel Jack Smith in the Mar-a-Lago classified documents criminal investigation.

Trump appealed U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell’s decision ordering Corcoran to testify and hand over documents, including handwritten notes. The Appeals Court in light speed mode, rejected Trump’s appeal.

Corcoran will be testifying before the grand jury on Friday, CNN reports.

RELATED: ‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs

One former top DOJ official, Brandon Van Grack, says the “Special Counsel is about to get access to the most critical evidence in the case. Should allow DOJ to make a charging decision without significant delay.”

He did not define what “without significant delay” means in terms of days, weeks, or months.

Van Grack served at Main Justice for eleven years, including as a lead prosecutor in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, and later, as the Chief of the DOJ’s Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) Unit.

“The announcement from a panel of three judges in the appeals court – less than a day after Trump sought to put Corcoran’s testimony on hold – adds momentum to the special counsel investigation as it seeks to secure evidence that could make or break a federal criminal case against Trump,” CNN explains. “The Justice Department has successfully argued in court that prosecutors have enough evidence that Trump’s interactions with the lawyer were part of a possible crime that they can pierce the confidentiality of the conversations between the two.”

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BREAKING NEWS

‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs

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A former top Dept. of Justice official says a federal judge’s expedited ruling ordering an attorney for Donald Trump to testify against his client before a grand jury and hand over documents very well may be related to “national security.”

U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell ruled that DOJ Special Counsel Jack Smith had successfully made the case Donald Trump may have committed a crime, via his attorneys, in his classified documents case. That finding allowed her to invoke the crime-fraud exception, and order Trump attorney Evan Corcoran to testify before the grand jury investigating the ex-president’s unlawful retention and refusal to return hundreds of classified documents.

Former FBI General Counsel Andrew Weissmann, who also worked for Special Counsel Robert Mueller and headed the DOJ’s Criminal Fraud Section, Wednesday afternoon on MSNBC said it’s possible Judge Howell’s expedited decisions were related to national security.

Tuesday night Judge Howell ordered DOJ to provide information by 6:00 AM Wednesday.

READ MORE: Jim Jordan’s Attack on Manhattan DA Will ‘Backfire’ and Allow Democrats to Expose Coordination With Trump: Columnist

Trump appealed Howell’s ruling, and Wednesday afternoon the Appeals Court denied his appeal related to the documents, Politico reports.

“I’ve never seen anything that quick. It’s very hard to know why. I have to say, to me, when I think about what can be a plausible reason– and this is pure speculation – is that there must be something in the papers that gave the judges concern about national security implications, because it’s such a short timeframe.”

“The reason this is a bombshell is you could end up with Evan Corcoran as a key, fundamental witness against Donald Trump in an obstruction of justice case and a false statements case,” Weissmann adds.

According to Politico, Wednesday’s appeals court ruling “effectively permits the Justice Department to circumvent Trump’s attorney-client privilege after a lower-court judge found that the documents likely contain evidence of a crime.”

NEW: Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor

 

This article was updated to correctly spell Andrew Weissmann’s last name.

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Trump Appeals After Judge Agrees With Special Counsel on Crime-Fraud Exception and Requires His Attorney to Testify

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Donald Trump’s attorneys have appealed a ruling that requires one of his lawyers to testify before a grand jury investigating his unlawful removal, retention, and refusal to return classified documents from the White House.

Attorneys for the Special Counsel “said there is evidence of a deliberate effort not to turn over all the material covered by the subpoena,” The Washington Post reports, citing people familiar with the matter.

U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell had reportedly agreed with Special Counsel Smith that there is sufficient evidence proving Donald Trump may have committed a crime via his attorneys, and ruled his attorney must testify before a grand jury. The ruling, which was not made public, was handed down Friday night, NBC News reported Wednesday afternoon.

Judge Howell “ruled in favor of applying the ‘crime fraud’ exception to Trump’s attorney-client privilege and ordered Trump lawyer Evan Corcoran to testify before the federal grand jury.”

READ MORE: ‘On Standby’: Experts Say Manhattan Hush Money Grand Jury Delay ‘Not All That Surprising’

Trump’s attorneys have already appealed the ruling.

“People familiar with the matter said an appeals panel has already begun reviewing the decision, after Trump’s lawyers appealed,” The Washington Post adds. “The extraordinarily quick timeline suggests that the judges — all nominated by Democratic presidents — intend to rule swiftly.”

Trump could take his case all the way to the Supreme Court, but The Post says it’s “not clear he would have a much better chance of success there.”

According to an NBC News report from October, Corcoran directed another Trump attorney, Christina Bobb, to sign the letter claiming a thorough search of Mar-a-Lago had been made and all classified or “sensitive” documents had been returned. That was proven untrue after federal agents, executing a search warrant, recovered hundreds of documents with classified markings.

NEW: ‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs

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