Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 7th

Written by scott on February 7th, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

PEOPLE: Hollywood stuntman and stunt coordinator Shawn Balentine has come out publicly as a gay man in a deeply personal Facebook post. full story

INDIA: An Indian filmmaker has locked horns with the country’s tax office over a film about gay people. full story


UK: UKIP has selected a proponent of gay ‘cure’ therapies as a candidate for the London Assembly. full story

USA: Supporters of Hillary Clinton on Saturday pounced on a newly unearthed resolution signed by Bernard Sanders in 1982 affirming marriage is between “husband and wife,” asserting the document undercuts the notion he’s been a longtime supporter of same-sex marriage. full story

USA: Hillary Clinton’s State Department emails got her into trouble last year with same-sex parents, and the campaign is showing its support now by sharing a letter from an anxious gay father who is “scared of what a Republican president will mean for my family.” full story

USA: At the GOP debate, on same-sex marriage, Marco Rubio was emphatic about his opposition, but also left room to “respect” those who may have a differing views in the aftermath of the U.S. Supreme Court decision extending marriage rights for gay couples across the country. full story

USA, ARIZONA: A trans man has been shot and killed by police in Arizona only weeks after announcing he was transitioning, and then the media misgendered him. full story


USA, IDAHO: When the U.S. Supreme Court last summer gave same-sex couples the right to marry, Republican Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho said Congress should move quickly to protect the religious liberty of citizens who believe in traditional marriage. full story

USA, NEW YORK: New York is taking steps to stop therapists from trying to change young people’s sexual orientation, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday. full story

USA, TENNESSEE: One Washington County commissioner is speaking out against the anti marriage equality resolution, and asking for it to be removed. full story

USA,TEXAS: A change in Texas prison system policy means transgender inmates who hadn’t started hormone therapy before incarceration can do so behind bars. full story

USA, TEXAS: Dallas Democrats are demanding the resignation of a Dallas County justice of the peace who says he won’t perform same-sex marriages despite the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling allowing gay couples to wed. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 6th

Written by scott on February 6th, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

GENERAL: Here’s a guide to words well-known throughout the transgender community and yet misunderstood, misused, or unknown in the world outside the T. full story

PEOPLE: Chelsea Manning has released her own podcast from prison – in which she opens up about her life, from being the victim of homophobic bullying to her transition.
full story

AUSTRALIA: A senior policeman in Coolangatta, Australia has had to write a junior officer a written apology after making a ‘gay’ notation next to the latter’s name on a workplace roster left on his desk in open view of anyone entering his office. full story

GREENLAND: Following unanimous approval in both the Greenlandic and Danish Parliaments, the same-sex marriage and adoption bill was given the ceremonial Royal Assent on Wednesday, and will take effect April 1st. full story

KUWAIT: The family of a US soldier have claimed that she and her girlfriend were jailed for 25 years on “false” charges because of their sexuality. full story

Lesbian Couple Kuwait

MEXICO: A decision by the Mexican Supreme Court could pave the way to marriage equality in all 32 of its states according to the Yucatan Times. full story

MOROCCO: Two men accused of being involved in a secret gay relationship have been sentenced to 18 months in prison in Morocco. full story

ROMANIA: In November 2015, the so-called Coalition for Family started a nationwide campaign to ban same-sex marriage in the Constitution, by narrowly defining marriage as the union between a man and a woman. full story

RUSSIA: Prosecutors have begun considering whether media coverage of the unexpected friendship between a male tiger and goat at a safari park in the country’s far east counts as gay propaganda. full story


USA: Four men talked with Buzzfeed about their experience being gay and serving. full story


USA: Hillary Clinton took a swipe at rival Bernie Sanders during the recent Democratic debate – after he claimed she “insulted” all gay people. full story

USA, FLORIDA: A Sarasota, Fla., suburb is waiting for its school board to meet and vote on potentially expanding a new transgender-inclusive bathroom policy, following a packed hearing on the issue. full story

USA, GEORGIA: The “Pastor Protection Act,” the first of several proposed religious exemptions for opponents of the marriages to gain any traction this year, won approval Thursday in a House Judiciary subcommittee and was sent on for a full committee vote. full story

USA, INDIANA: House Minority Leader Scott Pelath is vowing the gay rights debate isn’t over during the legislative session, even though an anti-discrimination bill was abandoned this week in the Republican-dominated Senate. full story

USA, NEBRASKA: A federal judge has issued a permanent injunction striking down Nebraska’s now-negated ban on gay marriage and civil unions. full story

USA, NEW YORK: Ali Forney Center has already raised $186,073 towards buying antigay ‘Harlem hate church’, which will be sold in a foreclosure auction Feb. 24th. full story

USA, NORTH CAROLINA: Meet Joe Parrish, he’s like any other 24-year-old political science graduate at the start of his career – and he’s asexual. full story

Joe Parrish

USA, NORTH CAROLINA: North Carolina legislators and a magistrate who won’t issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples are asking a federal court to let them defend a religious exemption law challenged as discriminatory. full story

USA, TENNESSEE: Former Tennessee state Sen. David Fowler, now head of his state’s Family Action Council, has filed a lawsuit against a second county clerk which intends to nullify the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling. full story

USA, TEXAS: A judge in the US state of Texas is being urged to step down after revealing that he would not perform a same-sex marriage. full story

USA, UTAH: A group of LGBT-affirming mothers in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are alarmed because they say youth suicides in the church are up since leaders condemned LDS gay couples in November full story

USA, WEST VIRGINIA: West Virginia bill would give Christians a “get out of jail free” card. A sweeping religious freedom bill promoted by Republicans in West Virginia would allow people of faith to illegally discriminate against others, as well as break any other law that violates their sincerely held religious beliefs. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 5th

Written by scott on February 5th, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

PEOPLE: Steve Pauwels – a pastor in Londonderry, New Hampshire – is not very happy about the inclusion of gay and transgender characters in superhero comic books. full story

Captain America

INTERNATIONAL: The UN Postal Administration has released six new postage stamps promoting equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. full story


CHINA: study commissioned by independent statutory body Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC), and conducted by the Gender Research Centre of the Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies of The Chinese University of Hong Kong, found out that 55.7% of telephone survey respondents support anti-discrimination legislation on the grounds of sexual orientation, gender identity (SOGI) and intersex status – almost a twofold increase from the findings in a 2005 government survey, where 28.7% supported such a measure. full story

COLOMBIA: Colombia is on the brink of joining Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay as South American countries that allow same-sex couples to legally marry as its Constitutional Court is set to decide the issue as soon as next Thursday. full story

INDIA: Cardinal Oswald Gracias, the country’s most senior Catholic priest, has called for gay sex to be made legal. full story

ISRAEL: A group of Jewish so-called gay ‘conversion’ therapists have set up shop in Israel – after coming under fire in the US. full story

UK, NORTHERN IRELAND: Police in Northern Ireland are on the hunt for whoever is responsible for the incendiary leaflets that have been distributed throughout Derry which claim that homosexuals have the “longest child abuse record in history” and that Adolf Hitler used his “homosexual formation” the SS to “commit almost the whole Holocaust.” full story

UK, NORTHERN IRELAND: Trans people living in Scotland still face long delays and discrimination on the NHS, politicians have heard. full story


USA: The National LGBTQ Task Force has launched a groundbreaking income tax preparation guide for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people. The new taxpayer resource is intended to guide LGBTQ people with questions they might want to ask when sitting in front of their tax preparer or program. full story

USA: Hillary Clinton on her litmus tests: “We have to preserve marriage equality. We have to go further to end discrimination against the LGBT community. We’ve got to make sure to preserve Roe v. Wade; not let it be nibbled away, or repealed. We’ve got work to do,” she added. full story

USA: In an interview with NBC’s New England Cable News, yesterday Donald Trump vaguely promised “forward motion” on LGBT issues should he be elected. full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: A gay professor claims he was fired for sexual harassment due to a “misunderstanding” that stemmed from telling a student he would “ride them hard.” full story

USA, FLORIDA: After more than an hour of debate and public testimony, the Florida House Judiciary committee voted to advance the so-called “Pastor Protection Act,” which purports to protect clergy from having to perform same-sex weddings. full story

USA, FLORIDA: Feb. 4 marks the first of three “committee of the whole” meetings, where the Jacksonville City Council will discuss a proposed LGBT-inclusive Human Rights Ordinance. full story

USA, INDIANA: Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg told reporters that LGBT civil rights is high on his agenda and blamed Pence, whose actions last year surrounding an anti-gay “religious freedom” law brought the state national attention, boycotts, and economic disadvantage. full story

USA, MAINE: Governor Paul LePage is blocking rules to protect transgender students. full story

USA, TEXAS: An elected judge in the US state of Texas is refusing to grant same-sex marriages, claiming he spoke with God and set everything straight. full story

USA, VIRGINIA: A Virginia House of Delegates subcommittee on Thursday approved a bill that would require people to use restrooms in schools and public buildings that correspond to their “biological gender.” The subcommittee on Thursday also approved state Del. Bob Marshall (R-Prince William County)’s House Bill 385, which would ban municipalities from enacting measures against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. full story

USA, WASHINGTON: Washington state Republican Graham Hunt, a ‘war hero’ lawmaker who tried to ban trans people from going to the bathroom, has resigned – after it emerged he isn’t who he claimed to be. full story

USA, WASHINGTON: A surreal anti-trans bill has progressed in Washington state – which could enforce ‘genital-checking’ for public bathrooms. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 3rd

Written by scott on February 4th, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

GENERAL: A new video presented by BBC Raw sheds light on what it’s like to be asexual. full story

PEOPLE: Jussie Smollett: “I am a gay man with an extremely open heart. God, I’ve never had to talk about this, so I’m trying to find the words. If I had to label myself, I would label myself as a gay man.” full story

PEOPLE: Theodore Shoebat’s latest video features the unhinged antigay activist declaring that Jesus Christ would personally kill gay people with his bare hands, so gentle and merciful in his grace. “Jesus Christ took up a whip and beat people up in his Father’s temple. Now imagine if sodomites were in his Father’s temple. Jesus would have killed them all. He wouldn’t just have hit them; Jesus got violent!” full story

POP CULTURE: Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy has said he plans to diversify his team of directors by the end of this year. full story

POP CULTURE: fter outraging some conservatives last November by featuring a boy in one of their adverts for Barbie (‘Moschino Barbie is so fierce!’), toy makers Mattel may face further backlash with the news that they’ve created a brand new Barbie version lesbian US soccer star Abby Wambach. full story


USA: Play School, Australia’s favourite television show for pre-school children, is searching for two gay dads to feature in an episode aimed at educating youngsters on diversity within the family. full story

RELIGION: Take a look at the actual facts that should have homophobes who pick and choose what to preach quaking in their boots. full story

ANGOLA: The Angola United Methodist Church condemns marriage between people of the same sex, said Methodist Church bishop, Gaspar João Domingos, who mentioned doctrinal principles. full story

AUSTRALIA: The Recognition of Foreign Marriages Bill 2014 was re-introduced in the senate Thursday (4 February), after a British gay man who died on his honeymoon in South Australia was listed as ‘never married’ on his death certificate. full story

INDIA: Just as we were getting ready to dress up with dramatic colourful saris on the Delhi gay scene and show off our bhangra and dandiya dance moves we learnt from our Bollywood dance class, we discovered that being gay in India has become illegal, again. full story

ITALY: A civil union law wouldn’t go unnoticed among gay travelers, said LoAnn Halden, a spokeswoman for the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association, an umbrella organization of gay-friendly tourist companies. full story

RUSSIA: Russia’s most vitriolic and homophobic lawmakers has offered gay rights activist Nikolai Alekseev a one-way ticket out of the country. full story

UK: Pro-LGBT lobbyists within the Church of England have called for ‘affirmation’ services for people who have changed gender. full story

UK, NORTHERN IRELAND: An appeal by the bakers at the centre of the “gay cake” discrimination battle has been adjourned for three months. The adjournment follows a last minute intervention by Northern Ireland’s top legal advisor, Attorney General John Larkin QC, to investigate concerns the country’s equality laws conflict with human rights legislation. full story

USA: Marriage Equality USA on Feb. 3 announced that it would close down later this year. full story

USA: When asked about what she’s looking for in a potential Supreme Court justice, Hillary Clinton took a stand for LGBT rights. full story

USA: A proposed rule would require military health care provider TriCare to cover hormone therapy and counseling for transgender spouses and other dependents of uniformed military personnel. full story

USA: Franklin Graham appeared on CNN today where he declared that the US government has only been secular for “the last few years.” He then called for a national referendum on same-sex marriage. full story

USA: Anti-LGBTIQ former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum is ending his presidential bid, and is expected to make the announcement on Wednesday evening, and has endorsed Marco Rubio. full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) in partnership with the Equality Federation, today released its second annual national report assessing the status of state legislation affecting LGBT equality across America, including in California. full story

USA, INDIANA: Gov. Mike Pence isn’t saying whether he would have signed the state Senate’s failed proposal for extending anti-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay and bisexual people. full story

USA, MONTANA: Denise Juneau, the first Native American woman to win a statewide elective office, has become the first openly gay candidate in Montana. full story

MSU photo by Kelly Gorham

MSU photo by Kelly Gorham

USA, SOUTH DAKOTA: Today, South Dakota lawmakers moved forward with two more pieces of discriminatory legislation targeting LGBT South Dakotans – HB 1112 and HB 1107. Both passed through the House State Affairs committee today by a vote of 10 to 3. HB 1112 could ban transgender students from participating in athletic activities consistent with their gender identity and HB 1107 seeks to explicitly authorize taxpayer-funded discrimination against LGBT South Dakotans and single mothers. full story

USA, TENNESSEE: The Washington County Commission will consider an anti same sex marriage resolution again on 2/22. full story

USA, TENNESSEE: Nashville’s Metro Council is now on record requesting the city’s delegation in the Tennessee legislature to oppose state bills that are anti-gay marriage. full story

USA, WASHINGTON DC: The D.C. City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to give final approval of a bill that requires continuing education programs for licensed healthcare professionals that include LGBT-related “cultural competency” training. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 3rd

Written by scott on February 3rd, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

INTERNET: Users of the hashtag #TweetLikeAWhiteGay are turning the tables by poking fun at certain members of the gay community who decry prejudice while simultaneously discriminating against other minorities. But is the hastag itself racist? full story

PEOPLE: “It’s not neat and clean and tidy,” Mennonite pastor Pieter Niemeyer says of his decision to come out after 20 years of lying to his wife, and a lifetime of lying to himself. full story

Mennonite pastor Pieter Niemeyer

PEOPLE: A young girl scout has sold thousands of cookies despite receiving abuse from a neighbour because she is trans. full story

PEOPLE: George Shelley, the I’m A Celebrity star, appears in an emotional video and reveals he has dated men as well as women in the past. full story


POP CULTURE: Bi YouTuber Eliel Cruz just made a witty video on just why bi representation is so important in media. full story

POP CULTURE: As the specter of Valentine Day’s looms, Hallmark have decided to promote their line of greeting cards with a series of videos that highlight real-life couples and their love stories; a gay and lesbian couple among them. full story

POP CULTURE: The Christian Post says: Fans of the TLC series “19 Kids and Counting” will be happy to know that the series will be back for another run. full story

POP CULTURE: Over at The Friendly Atheist, Hemant Mehta believes the Christian Post‘s story about TLC bringing back 19 Kids & Counting is bullshit. full story

AUSTRALIA: An anti-gay Australian MP has suggested he would probably just ignore a proposed public vote on same-sex marriage. full story

AUSTRALIA: “The ‘think of the children’ argument is among the most hurtful in the marriage equality debate,” Senator Wong wrote in the essay. “It posits that gay and lesbian relationships harm children, that gay and lesbian parents are bad parents.” full story

AUSTRALIA: The Turnbull government could still walk away from its plan to hold a plebiscite on same-sex marriage, opening up the prospect of Parliament voting on same-sex marriage before the federal election, Liberal MP Warren Entsch says. full story

AUSTRALIA: Greens senator Robert Simms has ripped into former prime minister Tony Abbott for speaking to an ultra-conservative anti-LGBTIQ group in the U.S. last week. full story

ITALY: Cardinal Velasio Di Paolis has said that a proposal for legal recognition of same-sex unions would be “fundamentally against the Italian constitution.” full story

MOROCCO: Two Moroccan youths have been jailed for one and a half years and fined 2,000 dirhams each on charges of homosexuality. full story

RUSSIA: The government has given a gay rights activist the maximum fine just for giving advice to LGBTI teens on social media – Sergei Alekseenko, director of the LGBTI group Maximum, was found guilty of violating the country’s ‘gay propaganda’ law in Murmansk, north-western Russia, and has been ordered to pay 100,000 rubles ($1,300, €1,200). full story

UK: The Christian Institute claim 8,000 people have signed a petition supporting the anti-same sex marriage Ashers Bakery. full story

UK, NORTHERN IRELAND: Leaflet have been distributed in Northern Ireland linking gay people to child abuse and Nazis. full story

USA: Despite outrage at Germaine Greer’s anti-trans comments, the 77-year-old picked up the ‘Iconoclast’ prize at the Oldie of the Year awards full story

USA: Both Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio have vowed to pass the First Amendment Defense Act in their first 100 days, a vile bill, introduced by bigot lawmakers Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho), and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), that would allow businesses and individuals to discriminate against gay people in the guise of ‘religious liberty’. full story

USA: Brian Brown on Cruz’s Iowa win – Senator Cruz is a champion for marriage and religious liberty and his victory last night sends a powerful message to the nation’s elite that the American people utterly reject the anti-constitutional, illegitimate ruling of the US Supreme Court redefining marriage. full story

USA: More than one third of gay men have been treated badly due to their weight, results of a new survey show. full story

USA: The Advocate profiles the clients of the anti-LGBTIQ Liberty Counsel. full story

USA, ALASKA: Sen. Bill Stoltze, R-Chugiak, an Alaska state senator, suffered from a case of misidentification during a committee hearing Tuesday, introducing assistant Attorney General Bill Milks (one of the state’s attorneys who defended Alaska’s ban on same sex marriage) as “Attorney General Harvey Milk.” full story

USA: Boys wore dresses and girls wore men’s collared shirts to school this week at Buchanan High School this week in Clovis, California after the Clovis Unified School District trustees ignored recommendations and held on to a restrictive dress code – trustees went against recommendations that would have allowed boys to wear long hair and earrings and removed language that says dresses and skirts are for girls. full story


USA, FLORIDA: A bill that makes it easier for both same-sex parents to appear on their children’s birth certificate clears a committee in the Florida House. full story

USA, ILLINOIS: Chicago Catholic priest Rev. Michael Shanahan comes out in an interview on the open secret of gay Catholic clergy. full story

Rev. Michael Shanahan

USA, INDIANA: Republican lawmakers in the Indiana senate have killed a civil rights bill that would have offered non-discrimination protections to gay, lesbian and bisexual Hoosiers. The bill, however, would not have provided protections for the state’s transgender citizens. full story

USA, INDIANA: Indiana corporate leaders warned that the failure of the Republican-controlled Legislature to enact a law protecting gay, lesbian and bisexual people from discrimination could rebound on businesses. full story

USA, IOWA: Phil Robertson, the gay-hating right-wing patriarch of TV’s Duck Dynasty clan, showed up at a rally in Iowa to say “We have to run this bunch out of Washington, D.C., rid the earth of ‘em.” full story

USA, NEW YORK: The widespread discrimination and mistreatment transgender individuals face in the healthcare system could be alleviated with specialized provider training to increase knowledge about transgender health and needs, and to promote positive attitudes. full story

USA, NEW YORK: Activist Scott Wooledge has created a video about Pastor James David Manning for the Ali Forney Center, whose campaign to buy Harlem’s hate church continues to gather steam and garner notice in the mainstream press. full story

USA, NEW YORK: The Ali Forney Center’s campaign to buy Harlem’s hate church got a huge boost this morning when Dan Savage spent the the first five minutes of his widely followed podcast on the story. full story

USA, NEW YORK: “This is the lord’s house! This ain’t no damn bathhouse! It ain’t no fag house! And before you can ever own this property – hook or crook – men who are fags with testicles will be carrying babies in their testicles and giving birth to them through their anus. That’s how impossible it is for you to get this house. When you start carrying a baby in your bags and birthing that baby through your ass, THEN you can own this house! But until I see you pull a baby out your ass, you ain’t gonna pull this church out from underneath us. And boom shaka-laka goes right there! And all you fags can go to hell! I’m James David Manning, everybody. I’m the LORD’S servant!” – Harlem’s hate pastor in a clip titled Foreclosure Message To My Enemies. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 2nd

Written by scott on February 2nd, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

GENERAL: Buster Books has announced plans to publish all future books under gender neutral titles. full story


HISTORY: SheWired lists 10 historical bisexual women artists that you should know. full story

PEOPLE: Patti Davis, once regarded as the renegade daughter of Ronnie and first lady Nancy, speaks with activist James Duke Mason, son of pop star Belinda Carlisle and Reagan’s former Chief of Protocol Morgan Mason, about her father’s abject failure in regards to the AIDS crisis. full story

PEOPLE: I was born into a traditional, conservative Sikh family, where neither of my parents spoke English very well. full story


PEOPLE: UK Newsnight presenter and Dragon’s Den host Evan Davis has opened up about staying in his closet earlier in his career – and how it was a “terrible mistake”. full story


PEOPLE: After a very public coming out for skier Gus Kenworthy, last weekend’s Aspen X Games provided the perfect opportunity for his boyfriend, Gayby actor Matthew Wilkas, to cheer him on loud and proud on television. full story

Gus Kenworthy

AUSTRALIA: Members of The Nationals party have rejected the notion of a plebiscite on marriage equality and instead support a parliamentary vote on the matter, according to an Australian Marriage Equality (AME) poll. full story

INDIA: The Indian Supreme Court today heard a curative petition by gay activists to reopen consideration of Section 377, the colonial-era penal code which criminalizes homosexuality, and address its legality. full story

UK: Leading UK gay activist Peter Tatchell has come out in support of a Belfast baker who was found guilty of discrimination for refusing to bake a cake with the slogan “Support Gay Marriage”. full story


UK, SCOTLAND: On the first day of LGBT History Month in the UK, SNP MSP Kevin Stewart has lodged a motion with the Scottish Parliament calling for greater LGBTI inclusivity in workplaces. full story

USA: President Barack Obama is the most progressive President for LGBT rights that has ever occupied the oval office, and he took the time to open up about his passion for the issues during his annual YouTube Interview. full story

USA: The Department of Defense announced today, Feb. 1, a proposed rule change extending benefits to transgender troops and their families as part of a comprehensive change in mental health and wellness benefits. full story

USA: You will no doubt be shocked, shocked, to hear that Donald Trump has said something terrible. full story

USA: Bryan Fischer on same sex weddings: “If you have a biblical worldview, you’d be grieved for them,” he said. “You’d be grieved for what they’re heading into, grieved for the way in which homosexual behavior separates them from God, the risks that it’s putting them at, the risk that it’s going to put children to if they’re adopted into that household. So the proper response would not be joy, it would not be celebration; the proper Christian response would grief and sorrow over what these two people are doing to themselves and also to others.” full story

USA: Want to know if transphobic legislation has been introduced in your state? The Advocate has a list. full story

USA: Former Arkansas Governor turned Fox News talking head Mike Huckabee has announced he has ended his bid to become the 2016 Republican presidential nominee. full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: The US Department of Justice will launch a probe of the San Francisco Police Department – after a homophobia scandal and a number of race-related incidents. full story

USA, FLORIDA: A Catholic high school in South Florida was vandalized over the weekend and spray-painted with gay slurs and anti-gay images according to local news reports. full story

USA, GEORGIA: A little publicized hearing Monday on legislation that would allow religious non-profit organizations to opt-out of serving gay couples or follow government anti-discrimination requirements has stoked the fears of opponents that Senate Bill 284 may be on a fast track in Georgia. full story

USA, IOWA: Two Massachusetts students say they staged a marriage proposal at a Ted Cruz rally in Iowa as a demonstration against the Republican presidential hopeful’s stance on gay marriage. full story


USA, NEW YORK: Harlem hate Pastor James David Manning today posted a 13-minute rant in which he declares that the coming public auction of his church is illegal because he’s already won court cases exempting ATLAH from paying water and sewage bills. full story

USA, NEW YORK: The Ali Forney Center is already 50% toward the $200k goal to purchase the Harlem hate church at auction, which AFC hopes will help obtain additional support from local government and foundations to close the deal. full story

USA, TEXAS: LGBT groups plan a petition drive to revive the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, but don’t expect the nondiscrimination law to appear on the ballot again anytime soon. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – February 1st

Written by scott on February 1st, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

PEOPLE: Titan Men has offered to help Former US congressman Aaron Schock to pay off his huge legal costs following a federal investigation, if he will star in a gay porn video. full story

POP CULTURE: Five more countries – United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain, Jordan and Kuwait – have banned British trans drama The Danish Girl over ‘moral depravity’. full story

POP CULTURE: Arguably half a dozen characters who have dabbled with bisexuality, and three shows with major bisexual themes were honored over the weekend at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, making it one of the most bi-friendly awards shows ever. full story

INTERNATIONAL: Freedom To Marry has relaunched its website to serve as an instructive tool for overseas activists pursuing marriage equality in their own nations. full story

INDIA: The out lesbian Premier of Ontario has been honoured at a holy Sikh gurdwara in India, in a hugely poignant moment. full story

UK: Merseyside Police have announced plans to replace their uniform’s black boot laces for rainbow-coloured ones to mark the start of LGBT History month. full story

UK: Lib Dem leader Tim Farron has been asked again whether he thinks that gay sex is sinful – and he declined to answer the question. full story

Lib Dem leader Tim Farron

USA: Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump said Sunday he wished the U.S. Supreme Court had left the issue of gay marriage to the states instead of making it legal across the board in its landmark ruling last year. full story

USA: In a landmark decision, the United States Department of Health and Human Services has ruled for the first time that a transgender person is entitled to gender-confirming surgery under Medicare, according to a statement sent to The Advocate by the case’s attorney, Ezra Young. full story

USA: Phil Robertson spoke out about same sex marriage at a Ted Cruz rally: “It’s sickening. It’s repulsive,” he said, referring to same-sex marriage as “depravity” and “perversion.” He called it sinful for the Supreme Court to have legalized same-sex marriage last year. “And they want us to swallow it.… We have to run this bunch out of Washington, DC. We have to rid the earth of them. Get them out of there.” full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: AB1732 would help transgender people, parents with children of different genders, and adults caring for aging parents without putting much of a burden on businesses. full story

USA, FLORIDA: Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen represents South Florida including Key West through the keys and parts of Miami. She scores 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign’s Congressional scorecard. full story

USA, INDIANA: Indiana lawmakers have days to decide whether to keep alive a bill this legislative session that would extend civil rights protections to gays and lesbians, but not transgender people. full story

USA, NEW YORK: Late Friday afternoon the Ali Forney Center, which serves homeless LGBT youths, announced a campaign to buy the building and the donation drive has already rocketed above $75,000. full story

USA, WASHINGTON: YouTuber Rachel Whitehurst, 23, of Seattle, Washington, is one of thousands of Americans to identify as bisexual, and recently decided to use her popularity to help herself and others fight against prejudice from others over their sexuality with her #ByeBiphobia campaign. full story

Rachel Whitehurst


Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 31st

Written by scott on January 31st, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

POP CULTURE: Jeffrey Tambor won the Screen Actor Guild Award on Saturday for his performance as a transgender woman on the series Transparent. full story

Jeffrey Tambor Transparent

AUSTRALIA: A poll of voters in the prime minister’s own electorate found a majority wanted a vote for marriage reform to go straight to parliament. full story

AUSTRALIA: Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says a marriage equality bill would pass if it were presented in federal parliament this week. full story

AUSTRALIA: Bill Shorten has urged the Turnbull government to drop the $160m plebiscite on marriage equality and allow members to vote on the issue in parliament, predicting it would pass if the Liberal party allowed a conscience vote. full story

AUSTRALIA: The Australian state of Victoria will become the second to issue an apology for historic gay sex convictions, it has been announced. full story

BOTSWANA: The LGBT group LeGaBiBo (Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals of Botswana) is seeking to register with Botswana government. full story

EUROPE: With claims from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) that the word ‘GAY’ is “not a well-known abbreviation for the community of LGBTQIA people,” the international organization responsible for maintaining the Internet’s global domain system has denied dotgay LLC’s community application proposal to operate the .GAY top-level domain (TLD). full story

INDIA: India’s colonial-era law criminalizing gay sex was restored in a shocking ruling by the Indian Supreme Court in 2013 after being struck down in 2009. India’s Supreme Court is set to take up the matter again this week full story

INDONESIA: Mayor Ridwan Kamil of Bandung, capital of Indonesia’s West Java province, has ordered the Islam Defenders Front (FPI), a hardline Islamic group, to take down ‘provocative’ banners targeting lesbians and gay men, local news reports quoted officials as saying on Friday. full story

Screen Shot 2016-01-30 at 8.19.21 PM

ITALY: Thousands of people opposed to gay rights gathered in Rome’s Circus Maximus to protest against legislation that would permit marriage-style unions for same-sex couples and grant them legal recognition as families. full story

USA: Despite supposedly only opposing civil unions, many of the protesters were openly homophobic – with signs even likening gay people to Nazis. full story

USA: A soldier who was discharged from the US Army 60 years ago for being a ‘Class II homosexual’ has finally been granted an honourable discharge. full story

USA: As presidential Democratic Party presidential candidate Hillary Clinton makes a final push before the Iowa caucus, she faces fire from the Log Cabin Republicans. The LGBT GOP organization’s web ad takes the candidate to task for her stance against marriage equality, which is ironic, because they gave Mitt Romney a pass on the same issue in 2012. full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: For the first time, the military spouse of the year nominee at Naval Base Coronado is gay. full story

USA, IOWA: Rep. Bobby Kaufmann, who has initiated an investigation into an LGBT youth conference, took offense at the suggestion that he and another male lawmaker are lovers. full story

USA, TEXAS: A trans woman has been shot and killed in Texas – but police officials referred to her as a man. full story

USA: Legislation that would require Utah judges to favor heterosexual couples over same-sex couples in adoptions or foster care placements is blatantly unconstitutional, say gay rights advocates. full story


Same Love, Better Wedding – Lesbian Owned New York City Wedding Planner

Written by scott on January 30th, 2016
Same Love, Better Wedding

Periodically we’ll feature one of our vendors here to let our readers know about some great people who can help you plan the perfect wedding.

Same Love, Better Wedding is NYC’s premiere LGBTQ wedding and event planning company. Run by LGBTQ people for LGBTQ people, SLBW will make your dream wedding a reality. We specialize in gay weddings and events in the NYC area, and in gay destination weddings in Italy. If a romantic Italian destination wedding is what you desire, we can take you to the most stunning corners of Italy, where we already have a team in place to make sure that your wedding is a success. So sit back, relax, and let us do the work! , Same Love, Better Wedding (SLBW) is the quintessential, same sex, luxury wedding planning company. Brought to you by Gioia Grabos and her team of dedicated, passionate global citizens, SLBW will create the gay wedding of your dreams.

See the Same Love, Better Wedding Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in New York City


Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 30th

Written by scott on January 30th, 2016

Here’s our daily round-up of the marriage equality / LGBT rights stories from all around the internet. If we missed anything, let us know. Enjoy!

PEOPLE: Michael Sam has not yet given up his dream of playing in the NFL. full story

Michael Sam kiss

AUSTRALIA: The Miss Gay and Ms. Transsexual Australia 2016 offers gender reassignment surgery as their grand prize, and they’re taking a lot of heat from people who think they’re trivializing a major surgery. full story

AUSTRALIA: Sydney councillor Christine Forster has sent two pretty pointed tweets to her big brother Tony Abbott after the former prime minister spoke against same-sex marriage to a conservative group in the U.S. full story

Christine Forster tweets

ITALY: Hundreds of thousands of Italians were expected to descend on Rome on Saturday to protest a bill that would legalize same-sex unions across the country. full story

ITALY: It seems that Dolce & Gabbana is stitching a different tune when it comes to same sex marriage. full story


NIGERIA: In what may be a first, a Nigerian podcast features a conversation between a bisexual man and a gay man, and debunks some myths about being bisexual. full story

PAKISTAN: The Pakistani printer of The International New York Times removed a photograph showing a gay kiss from the front page of Friday’s paper in what critics are characterizing as a blatant act of censorship. full story

Pakistan NYT

china kiss

UK: A Manchester pastor is offering a special service for transgender Christians – allowing them to get baptised again after changing their gender. full story

UK: The Church of England is growing drastically out of touch with its members on same-sex marriage, a poll has found – 45% of C of E members now support same-sex marriage, with just 37% opposed. full story

UK: The Speaker of the House of Commons has warned about the rise in homophobic violence – and promised a debate on global LGBT issues. full story

USA: The U.S. Department of Justice has made a move toward establishing that discrimination based on sexual orientation is sex discrimination, already banned by federal law. full story

USA: Ben Carson’s campaign chair Robert Dees said in a radio interview Thursday that gay men and women in the military have been militaristically flaunting their sexuality since the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Dees says this poses a threat to unit cohesion. full story

Robert Dees

USA: The Democratic National Committee announced on Friday it has named the lesbian former mayor of Houston and a longtime HIV/AIDS advocate to chair a new LGBT advisory board. full story

USA, IDAHO: The Idaho House has cleared a new federal tax conformity bill that says the state considers marriage to be between a man and a woman but will recognize same-sex marriage for tax purposes. full story

USA, MICHIGAN: The proposal to add civil rights for LGBT people to Michigan’s constitution will no longer aim for the 2016 ballots, its organizer announced. full story

USA, NEW YORK: The Ali Forney Center, whose Harlem based programs provide 50,000 meals a year for homeless LGBT youth and offers interventions such as medical and mental health care, case management, educational and career services, hopes to buy the Harlem hate church site to provide housing to LGBT youths. full story

USA, UTAH: Since a severe new anti-gay policy was enacted in the Mormon Church last fall, 32 LGBTI people between the ages of 14 and 20 have committed suicide. full story

USA, VIRGINIA: The Virginia Senate on Friday approved two bills that would ban anti-LGBT discrimination – one to codify into law Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s 2014 executive order that bans anti-LGBT discrimination against state employees, and the other to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the Virginia Housing Law. full story