Marriage Equality Round-Up 9/23/14

Written by scott on September 23rd, 2014

Gay Wedding - HandsHere’s our daily quick round-up of the marriage equality and LGBT rights stories that don’t warrant a full posting on the blog, or that we just didn’t have time to add. We’re able to get more news and analysis to you this way every day – enjoy!

Burundi: A Vietnamese man was arrested last week in Burundi for having sex with another man, a crime punishable with 3 to 24 months in jail and a small monetary fine. full story

Egypt: a group of men who are arrested for attending a same-sex wedding are facing trial today. full story

France: The rabidly gay Manif Pour Tous is planning another massive march for October 5th. full story

Ireland: A group in Ireland is offering the country’s first seminar on transgender equality and diversity to local companies. full story

Russia: An anti-gay lawmaker showed up at a gayrights event and apparently gassed a group of gays in a room. full story

USA: LGBT activists are worried that South Africa is becoming less gay friendly. full story

USA: The National Law Journal profiles the handful of attorneys fighting against marriage equality. full story

USA: Reality star Honey Boo-Boo’s gay uncle is engaged to marry his partner. full story

Alicia Keyes for Gay RughtsUSA: Singer Alicia Keys has stripped for LGBT rights. full story

USA: A new marriage equality poll shows an unexpected sudden drop in support in the US, and may be an outlier. full story

USA, Florida:The New Times profiles the lesbian couple challenging the state’s marriage equality ban in Broward County. full story

USA, Iowa: A Des Moines Democratic politician has warned that marriage quality could be in danger if the GOP takes over the state. full story

USA, Maryland: Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan just became the second sitting US Supreme Court Justice to officiate at a same-sex wedding. full story

USA, North Carolina: An anti-gay group wants to stop the city of Winston-Salem from recognizing same-sex marriages. full story

USA, Pennsylvania: A hate crimes bill could be close to passage, Representative Brendan Boyle says. full story


State Judge Strikes Down Louisiana Marriage Equality Ban

Written by scott on September 23rd, 2014

Louisiana mapJust a few weeks after a federal judge upheld the marriage equality ban in Louisiana, a state judge has struck it down.

The Washington Blade reports:

Judge Edward Rubin of the 15th Judicial District Court made the decision on Monday in the courtroom in Lafayette, La., according to KATC. According to reports, the decision itself won’t be made public until Tuesday morning because it concerns the adoption of a child. It wasn’t clear at the time of this posting whether the ruling would take effect immediately, not whether the decision would affect the entire state, or the just the Lafayette region. Multiple media outlets reported the office of Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell confirmed the ruling and has already issued an appeal. The office of the state attorney general didn’t immediately respond to the Washington Blade’s request to comment.

So even in the one state where they had eked out a victory, marriage equality opponents can’t sustain a streak anymore.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Louisiana.


Seriously? What Marriage Equality Opponents Are Saying

Written by scott on September 22nd, 2014

Seriously?Here’s the the latest in our ongoing series of some of the crazy things the anti-gay marriage equality opponents are saying and doing around the world.

Gay Marriage Vote Would Make Us Bigots Look Bad

Here’s a novel reason not to vote for marriage equality in Australia – it would make the bigots in the country look bad when they voted against it. Seriously, that is MP David Leyonhjelm’s argument against having a free vote on the issue:

“[The issue] is so emotive and so important to particular people that if we were to go down that path [of a free vote], we are the ones that become vilified. That’s not what our forefathers had in mind when they came up with a conscience vote.”

If public opinion is that strongly against you on the issue, maybe you need to rethink your position? Or to put it another way, if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

full story

Bigotry Won in Louisiana, So US Supreme Court Will Follow Suit

The National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown is totally sure his side will win at the US Supreme Court. Because they won one case at the state level:

“Oh, you didn’t hear much about the Louisiana decision? No surprise. Here’s what happened. U.S. District Court Judge Martin Feldman, following extensive briefing and argument, ruled that the U.S. Constitution does not prohibit the state of Louisiana from defining marriage solely as one man and one woman, nor refusing to recognize so-called same-sex marriages performed elsewhere. He found that the state had several valid reasons for having adopted this position, which was approved by 78 percent of its voters. One reason, Feldman wrote, was to encourage children to be raised by their mother and father in an intact family. Another was to ensure that any change in such a foundational issue as marriage should only be considered via the democratic process and not be judicially imposed. [snip] We’re probably 10 months away from the Supreme Court issuing a definitive ruling on whether defining marriage in state law solely as the union of one man and one woman violates the Constitution. When that ruling comes, many people will once again be shocked that the ‘inevitable’ didn’t happen because they hadn’t heard much about Feldman and his prescient ruling in Louisiana.”

So the group that’s been on the losing side of more than 30 cases in the last year says it’s inevitable that marriage quality will be overturned? We’ll see who surprised when the Court rules.

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Gay Marriage Humiliates Families, Unlike My Two Divorces

thrice married and twice divorced French ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy detests marriage equality:

“[The government is] humiliating families and humiliating people who love the family.”

I can only speak for our own families, both of which were totally supportive and in no way humiliated when Mark and I married. In fact, our marriage has made our relationships with most of the members of our family stronger. I wonder if Sarkozy has any LGBT family members, and if so, how they feel about the fact that he’s humiliated by their very existence?

full story

Gays Will Cause the Collapse of Civilization

A Devon newspaper columnist in the UK says that the acceptance of homosexuality will cause the collapse of civilization:

“So there you have it. In this country, homosexuality has gone from persecution, to permission, and thence promotion. When parliament passed the law making homosexuality legal, a well known figure was heard to remark “Knowing that lot, it’s a wonder they didn’t make it compulsory! It was not homosexuality per se that caused the collapse of the great civilising empires of Greece, Rome, Britain, et al, but rather public acceptance of it was the exclamation mark that signalled the end of empire. With it came the weakening of the disciplined social structures that support law and order. Slowly, but surely, anarchy will take over.”

Nice of him to knowledge that gays didn’t cause the collapse of the Roman Empire – only the acceptance of them did. *snark*

full story

The Howling Gays Demonized Our Noncontroversial Family Event

Janet Crouse, a part of the Concerned Women of America, blames the gays for making a “family” conference in Russia controversial:

“Having swept all before them in the aimless societies of the west, the LGBTIQ crowd is in a howling fury with Russia’s pro-family movement for its refusal to capitulate to their gay marriage agenda. They are calling for federal investigations of Americans participating in what should have been a non-controversial international pro-family celebration, honoring an institution that has been the backbone of virtually all societies throughout thousands of years of history.”

We should note that this supposedly “non-controversial” meeting of people who only wanted to talk about how wonderful “the family” is also included a resolution to export Russia’s anti-gay laws to the rest of the world. You attack us, we stand up for ourselves.

full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up 9/22/14

Written by scott on September 22nd, 2014

Gay WeddingHere’s our daily quick round-up of the marriage equality and LGBT rights stories that don’t warrant a full posting on the blog, or that we just didn’t have time to add. We’re able to get more news and analysis to you this way every day – enjoy!

Worldwide: Marta Mauras, the Chilean Ambassador to the United Nations, is tabling a resolution calling for human rights for everyone regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. full story

Australia: Ex Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who blocked marriage equality in the country for years, says she accepts that it will happen in Australia. full story

Australia: Prime Minister Tony Abbott has responded to a child’s letter about marriage equality. full story

Australia: A transgender teenager is filing a complaint after a supermarket cashier laughed in his face when looking at his ID. full story

India: Padmini Prakash Is the first transgender TV news anchor in India. full story

Mexico: The first gay couple has married in the state of Coahuila. full story

New Zealand: A new study has been launched to examine the prevalence of homophobia in New Zealand sports. full story

UK: Some UK gangs are reportedly selling sham same-sex marriages to help immigrants enter the country. full story

USA: The US Census Bureau says that more than 250,000 gay couples married in the first decade of marriage quality in the country. full story

USA, Arizona: A group called Why Marriage Matters Arizona is working to engage the Latino community for marriage equality. full story

USA, Missouri: A judge will hear a marriage equality case in Missouri on Thursday. full story

USA, Nevada: Ed Sheeran and Macklemore performed “Samelove” together at the iHeartRadio Festival in Las Vegas. full story

Virginia:The House of Delegates has approved a resolution that would allow them to bypass the state’s Attorney General to defend the marriage equality ban in court. full story


Matt Baume’s Marriage News Watch 9/22/14

Written by scott on September 22nd, 2014

Matt BaumeA surprising reveal this week from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg about the court’s plans for taking up a marriage case — or maybe not taking up any.

An Arkansas clerk breaks ranks with top state officials, declaring for the first time that the state’s marriage ban is unconstitutional.

Plus: numerous states freeze their marriage lawsuits while they wait for a Supreme Court ruling.

Authored By Matt Baume – See the Full Story at AFER

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.


After Transgender Girl Fined By School, Boys Wear Skirts in Protest

Written by scott on September 21st, 2014

Brazil Protest

My favorite story of the week:

Nine days after transgender student Maria Muniz was fined by school officials for wearing a skirt, a group of her Colegio Pedro II classmates decided to stage a protest: both male and female students would all wear skirts on the same day. Soon after their demonstration an ecstatic Muniz learned that the school’s decision was overturned, reports the UK’s Orange News. Pedro II’s principal told Brazil’s Globo that the school will consider relaxing their dress code. After the protest, school officials posted a picture of their male and female students wearing wearing skirts to social media, where it became widely shared. Supporters have been writing their support to Muniz using the hashtag #VouDeSaia.

I mean, how cool is that?

Authored By Mitch Kellaway – See the Full Story at The Advocate

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.


Marriage Equality Round-Up 9/21/14

Written by scott on September 21st, 2014

Gay Wedding - HandsHere’s our daily quick round-up of the marriage equality and LGBT rights stories that don’t warrant a full posting on the blog, or that we just didn’t have time to add. We’re able to get more news and analysis to you this way every day – enjoy!

Australia: The Australian Football League just asked a partnership with Brunei Airlines over the country’s anti-gay policies. full story

USA, Indonesia:The Aceh Province in Indonesia is ready to introduce a law that would punish gay sex with 100 lashes. full story

Mexico: Graham Gremore at Queerty profiles the life of LGBT Mexicans. full story

USA: The group Freedom to Marry commissioned poet Richard Banco, who was Barack Obama’s second inauguration poet, to write a poem about marriage equality. full story

USA: A new study says that ending the ban on blood donations from gay men in the US could potentially save more than 1 million lives. full story

USA: The Human Rights Campaign just released a new report on bisexual youth. full story

USA, Illinois: Pope Francis selected a moderate to lead the church in Chicago. full story

USA, Pennsylvania: Tom Wolfe, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate, has just endorsed a hate crimes bill for the state. full story

USA, Texas: a Texas woman who changed her last name after marrying her partner in California has been refused a new driver’s license in Texas. full story

USA, Utah: LGBT groups condemned the organizers of an anti-gay Salt Lake City rally for using pictures of two gay families to attack gay marriage. full story


Expect a US Supreme Court Ruling in Marriage Equality Soon

Written by scott on September 20th, 2014

US Supreme Court bw

Over the last year, lower federal court judges have removed most of the suspense from the questions of whether and when the Supreme Court might rule marriage equality to be a federal constitutional right. In case after case, in red states and blue, judges have ruled that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional. This makes it very likely that the Supreme Court will grant review in such a case this year, and even more likely, assuming it does, that it will rule that the Constitution requires states to extend marriage equality to gay couples.

Just one year ago, I wouldn’t have been nearly so confident in making such predictions. In June 2013, the court by a vote of 5 to 4 invalidated the federal Defense of Marriage Act, under which the federal government declined to recognize even those marriages between gay couples that were valid under state law.

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy’s majority opinion in United States vs. Windsor was a masterpiece of intentional ambiguity, providing roughly equal amounts of support to two very different interpretations. On one hand, Kennedy’s opinion seemed to be grounded in concerns about the limited power of the federal government over marriage, a ruling that would have had no implications for state bans on same-sex marriage.

On the other hand, language in Kennedy’s opinion regarding the equal dignity and respect to which gay couples were entitled and the important interests of their children suggested that state prohibitions on gay marriage were vulnerable to constitutional challenge. One might reasonably have predicted after Windsor that lower federal court judges, who are no less politically polarized than the rest of the nation, would have divided roughly down the middle on how to interpret Windsor.

Authored By Michael J. Klarman – See the Full Story at the LA Times

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.


US Marriage Equality Support Reaches 56%, Opposition Drops to 37%

Written by scott on September 20th, 2014

titleA new poll shows that opposition to marriage equality has dropped to a new low.

Pink News reports:

The New York Times/CBS poll, released this week, asked voters: “Do you think it should be legal or not legal for same-sex couples to marry?” The long-running poll recorded 56% of people in favour of same-sex marriage across the US, while just 37% now oppose it. The poll, which has run with the same wording for several years, registered a three-point drop in opposition from a similar poll conducted in July this year, when 40% of people had still opposed same-sex marriage. The 37% finding also demonstrates a sharp fall in opposition from just two years ago, with a July 2012 poll finding 44% opposition.

I wonder what those 7% in the middle are thinking?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.


Seriously? What Marriage Equality Opponents Are Saying

Written by scott on September 20th, 2014

Seriously?Here’s the the latest in our ongoing series of some of the crazy things the anti-gay marriage equality opponents are saying and doing around the world.

We Enjoy the Freedom to Fire Gays

North Carolina Representative Robert Pittenger was asked if he supports the Employment Non-Discrimination Act:

“It’s like smoking bans. Do you ban or do people have the right to private property? I think people have the right to private property. … If you have a business, do you want the government to come in and tell you you need to hire somebody? Why should government be there to impose on the freedoms we enjoy?”

This very white representative was then asked if he would support a company’s ability to fire someone for being black. He would not answer the question.

full story

Being Gay Is Fine, As Long As You Don’t Have Sex

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, responding to critics who don’t like the fact that he will still march in next year’s St. Patrick’s Day parade after a gay group was allowed to march as well, said:

“…the most important question I had to ask myself was this: does the new policy violate Catholic faith or morals? If it does, then the Committee has compromised the integrity of the Parade, and I must object and refuse to participate or support it. From my review, it does not. Catholic teaching is clear: “being Gay” is not a sin, nor contrary to God’s revealed morals. Homosexual actions are–as are any sexual relations outside of the lifelong, faithful, loving, lifegiving bond of a man and woman in marriage–a moral teaching grounded in the Bible, reflected in nature, and faithfully taught by the Church.”

While we appreciate the fact that Cardinal Dolan has conceded that being gay is not a sin, it is a little ironic that the Catholic Church wants to withhold marriage from gays, and then wants to say they’re committing a sin because they are having sex outside of marriage.

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