Marriage Equality Round-Up 5/23/13

Written by scott on May 23rd, 2013

you tube bigSo much news today – here’s a recap of some of the stories that don’t merit a full posting of their own (or that we just ran out of time for).

BALTIMORE MAYOR WILL MARRY GAY/LESBIAN COUPLES AT PRIDE

If you’re headed to Baltimore for Pride, why not get married too? The Washington Blade reports:

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake will serve as grand marshal of next month’s Pride parade and will officiate at a mass wedding of gay and lesbian couples at the Pride festival the following day, organizers announced this week. “Mayor Rawlings-Blake’s commitment to the LGBT community has been undoubtedly one of the best records in Maryland and for the City of Baltimore, from her early position in supporting marriage equality in Maryland to her commitment to combating gender identity anti-discrimination and violence in the city,” said Matt Thorn, interim executive director of the Gay & Lesbian Community Center of Baltimore, which organizes Pride.

OHIO CHURCH CAUSES CONTROVERSY OVER STRAIGHT MARRIAGE REWARD

If you live in Dayton, Ohio and are a straight couple, you can get a reward at a local church. The Christian Post reports:

As America waits with bated breath for the Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage, one Ohio church became the target of gay marriage supporters after it advertised an event celebrating biblical marriages that promised to reward husband and wife couples with free $25 Chick-fil-A gift cards. In the advertisement of the event hosted by the Cornerstone Baptist Temple in Dayton, Ohio, and boasting Chick-fil-A’s logo, the church noted: “We have been given a donation to provide a $25 Chick-fil-A gift card to honor every visiting husband and wife.” The ad also listed the church’s pastor, Jerry Siler, and Tom Raper as special speaker.

GAY MAN PROPOSES TO PARTNER IN CENTRAL PARK

From New York, we have a YouTube video of a gay man who proposed to his partner voa Flash Mob. LGBT Weekly reports:

May 11, New Yorker Carl Marucci insisted that his mother bring his boyfriend Drew Marsenison to Bethesda Fountain in Central park. Drew had no idea what was waiting for him … watch the video!

ELLEN AND PORTIA DISCUSS THEIR MARRIAGE

In California, Ellen Degeneres had her wife, Portia, on the show, and the two discussed their marriage. On Top Magazine reports:

Actress Portia de Rossi and Ellen DeGeneres talked about their marriage during Wednesday’s Ellen. De Rossi, 40, who will reprise the role of Lindsay Funke in Netflix’s upcoming fourth season of Arrested Development, and DeGeneres, 55, married in 2008 in California.

IS MARRIAGE EQUALITY MOMENTUM IN THE US ABOUT TO STALL?

As the Huffington Post reports, we’re almost out of states that don’t have marriage equality bans – where do we go from here?

But 36 states still ban such unions, and there’s little sign of change in those states anytime soon. While national public opinion polls show Americans warming to same-sex marriage, voters in many states remain staunchly opposed. And even where the politics and sentiment have changed, bans enshrined in many state constitutions could prove especially difficult to overturn — exactly the reason opponents pushed for constitutional measures in the first place.

Colorado, which legalized civil unions earlier this year, is a key example. Voters there approved a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage in 2006. Changing it requires either a signature drive to get a referendum on the ballot or a supermajority in each chamber before it could go to voters. Those hurdles mean that despite Democratic majorities and public support for same-sex marriage in the state, advocates had to settle for civil unions this year. House Speaker Mark Ferrandino, the state’s first openly gay lawmaker, said that a same-sex marriage referendum optimistically could be sent to voters by the end of the decade.

SENATOR CHUCK SCHUMER EXPLAINS THROWING BINATIONAL COUPLES UNDER THE BUS

No explanation needed. The Advocate reports:

The bottom line is that in the political reality in which we operate, the Senate and more broadly, the U.S. Congress, those who disagree with me have more than enough power to prevent passage, either as a stand-alone bill or as part of the immigration bill. And if we added it to S.744 in committee, they would have walked away and the bill would have failed. They have said it publicly, they have told me privately, and I believe them. The result: no equality, no immigration bill. Everyone loses. What can be accomplished via this comprehensive bill for 11 million people in the shadows, for the security and prosperity of our nation is too vital, too rare to let fail. I know that this provides little comfort. But I want you supporters of this amendment to know, I will be here and ready to work with you to advance the cause of legal equality. This is far from the last battle.

FRENCH ANTI-GAY GROUP DISTANCES ITSELF FROM MAN WHO KILLED HMSELF AT NOTRE DAME

The anti marriage equality group in France, la Manif pour tous, denided being connected with a man who shot himself in protest over the country’s new marriage equality law. Joe.My.God reports:

Yesterday a well-known anti-gay marriage activist shot himself in the head at the altar of Notre Dame Cathedral hours after writing a blog post denouncing France’s legalization of same-sex marriage. The French press, quite naturally, wants to know if the man was affiliated with Manif Pour Tous. Their leader Frigide Barjot says he was not: “This was a personal, isolated act. This man was part of a movement called the French Spring, which has nothing to do with us and we have condemned a long time ago. I did not know this man who belonged to the extreme-right. I pray for his soul.”

We also have a couple transgender updates:

TRANSGENDER ACTIVISTS FEEL BETRAYED BY GAY ALLIES OVER MARRIAGE EQUALITY BILL

After an amendment was defeated that would have aided transgender citizens who transition and have to divorce, transgender activists are feeling betrayed. Gay Star News reports:

Trans activists say government proposals went a little way to fix what were widely seen as anomalies in the treatment of trans individuals when it came to marriage. But plans were rejected to compensate trans people for ‘stolen marriages’, where a husband and wife in a loving relationship are forced to divorce when one transitions. And the government failed to use the bill to rectify other aspects of already existing marriage law that trans people see as ‘offensive’.

CANADA: TRANSGENDER WOMAN FILES COMPLAINT AGAINST BRIDAL SHOP

A transgender woman who was thrown out of a Saskatoon wedding shop is filing a complaint against the business. Gay Star News reports:

Rohit Singh, from Saskatoon in southern Canada, says she asked to try on a dress in Jenny’s Bridal Boutique and was refused. The shop owner thought Singh was a man and said other people in the store would be uncomfortable with Singh trying on a dress, CBC News reports. ‘She said, “Sorry we don’t allow men to wear dresses here”,’ Singh said. ‘I said I’m not a man, I’m transgender.’

 

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