5 YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF CALIFORNIA MARRIAGE DECISION
Yes, five years ago today, the California Supreme Court opened a brief windo for marriage equality in the Golden State. Shumway reports:
As the L.A. Times noted, the ruling was the most historic and sweeping decision of its kind to date: The court was poised 4 to 3 not only to legalize same-sex marriage but also to extend to sexual orientation the same broad protections against bias previously saved for race, gender and religion. The decision went further than any other state high court’s and would stun legal scholars, who have long characterized George and his court as cautious and middle of the road.
EXPERTS WEIGH IN ON PROP 8
Equality on Trial recaps some of the latest analysis on the Prop 8 case at the US Supreme Court:
Greg Stohr, writing in Bloomberg News, takes a look at the looming decision in Hollingsworth v. Perry, the Prop 8 case. The Justices are widely expected to issue the decision in late June, possibly in the last days of the Term. The piece examines the issue of the Prop 8 proponents’ legal standing to appeal the case, an issue that was briefed and argued in the case and is a threshold issue the Justices will need to decide before reaching the merits. The issue of Article III standing is important in the case because none of the government defendants appealed the district court’s decision striking down the initiative, and that left only the ballot initiative proponents to appeal.
DOES ROE V. WADE MEAN A CAUTIOUS RESPONSE ON PROP 8, DOMA?
Over at Slate, they’re looking at Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s statements about Roe v. Wade:
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg doubled down over the weekend on her ongoing criticism of Roe v. Wade. Ginsburg’s concern is about backlash: She says that by issuing the ruling that legalized abortion across the country in 1973, a group of “unelected old men” stopped the momentum that was building among the states. “That was my concern, that the court had given opponents of access to abortion a target to aim at relentlessly,” she said at the University of Chicago Law School. “My criticism of Roe is that it seemed to have stopped the momentum that was on the side of change.”
OLDER AMERICANS PUSHING UP SUPPORT OF MARRIAGE EQUALITY IN USA
Think Progress has another take on that Gallup poll yesterday showing 53% support for marriage equality:
For example, that 41 percent for 65 and over sounds, and is, low compared to the 70 percent figure for the 18-29 demographic. But that 41 percent is also 27 points higher than the figure for 65 and over in 1996 (a mere 14 percent supported legal same-sex marriage then). Essentially none of this change is accounted for by the entrance of younger cohorts into the 65 and over group because 50-64 year olds in 1996 were just as conservative (15 percent support) as those 65 and over.
ONLY 18% OF REPUBLICANS THINK AMERICANS SUPPORT MARRIAGE EQUALITY
Another interesting number from the poll – just a small percentage of republicans think Americans support marriage equality. On Top Magazine reports.
Less than half of Democrats (43%) and independents (30%) believe the public supports marriage equality. And 18 percent of Republicans say the public supports gay nuptials, while 77 percent say the public is opposed. For roughly two years, polls have found that a majority of Americans support marriage equality. Gallup’s poll found 53 percent of respondents support its legalization, while 45 percent remain opposed.
VIRGINIA SENATOR LAUNCHES PETITION TO REPEAL DOMA
Virginia’s Senator Mark Warner is launching a petition to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act. Joe.My.God reports:
Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) has launched a petition to the Supreme Court demanding the overturn of DOMA. Via email from Warner’s office: “Even though many states now recognize the rights of committed same-sex couples to marry, the federal government continues to discriminate. Same-sex couples are denied all sorts of legal rights – like access to their spouse’s insurance benefits and Social Security survivor benefits – because of an outdated law called DOMA. That’s just wrong.”
WHAT DO AMERICANS ON THE STREET THINK ABOUT MARRIAGE EQUALITY?
Next up from Towleroad.com, a fun video where Susie Sampson asks Americans on the street what they think about marriage equality (spoof).
SOME SPECULATE NORTH DAKOTA COULD BE NEXT
OK, it’s a long shot, but it’s amazing progress that we’re even talking about marriage equality and North Dakota in the same sentence. Watermark reports:
Voters would have to approve same-sex marriage in North Dakota because marriage is defined in the state’s constitution as being between a man and a woman. Tom Freier, executive director of the North Dakota Family Alliance, which favors that view of marriage, said he doesn’t think much has changed in voters’ minds in the past nine years. He said he doesn’t think the state’s political views align with Minnesota or the other states that recently legalized same-sex marriage. UND law professor Steven Morrison said North Dakotans’ views on marriage laws won’t change overnight, but he believes “the tide is shifting” nationally and change eventually will come to North Dakota. “You’re going to see a lot of North Dakotans who know people (in Minnesota) who are gay or lesbian and who are married,” he said.
MARRIAGE EQUALITY TESTIMONY FRON THREE YOUNG PEOPLE IN NEVADA
The Advocate flags videos of three young people in Nevada who gave testimony last week in favor of marriage equality:
The Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada has released a handful of videos from last week’s testimony regarding a resolution that would remove language from Nevada’s constitution that limits marriage to opposite-sex couples and replaces it with language recognizing all marriages.
ANG LADLAD FAILS TO WIN SEAT IN THE PHILIPPINES
The world’s first LGBT party, Ang Ladlad, failed to get enough votes to win a seat in the House. Gay Star News reports:
The early results for the Philippines’ midterm elections suggest that Ang Ladlad, the world’s only LGBT political party, has failed to win a seat in congress. Official election results report that the party got 75,913 votes, only 0.37% of the vote. A party needs at least 2% (570,112 votes at this election) of the vote to get a seat under the Philippines’ partylist system.
CHINESE LGBT ACTIVISTS PUSH FOR RIGHTS
Over at SDGLN, they’re reporting on a push for LGBT rights in China:
Xiao Tie works at Beijing’s LGBT [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender] center, working to end discrimination against homosexuals in China. Last February the battle became personal, when Xiao tried to marry her partner, Elsie Liao. She went to the local Civil Affairs Bureau to apply for a marriage certificate. “When we went to register, the local officer was a man, he was very impolite and very bad to us. He kept saying ‘it’s not possible, the marriage law says no’ and told us to go elsewhere. But when we decided to do that we knew it would never happen, our main aim was to express our need,” she said.
GLOBAL KISS-IN PLANNED FOR MAY 17TH
Gay Star News reports on a gloabl kiss-in planed for IDAHO day, May 17th:
It does not matter whether you are gay, bisexual or straight, there is a worldwide call to combat homophobia with a kiss this week. Across the globe, there will be several ‘kiss-ins’ promoting the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. In the UK, Manchester’s Lesbian & Gay Foundation will ‘Kiss Hate Goodbye’ with a flash mob on 18 May.
Finally, three transgender-related stories for you:
NEVADA ASSEMBLY PASSES HATE CRIME BILL
Edge Boston reports on a bill to protect transgender citizens:
The Assembly passed SB139 by a 30-11 margin Tuesday. The bill already cleared the Senate and now heads to Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval. The bill adds “gender identity or expression” to the list of motivations deemed to be hate crimes already in statute. Violators would be subject to the penalties for the actual crime committed and additional penalties because of the motivation.
TEXAS PROPOSES BILL TO BLOCK TRANSGENDER CITIZENS FROM MARRYING
Texas is going in the opposite direction with a late-session bill that would require ID for getting married. The Dallas Voice reports:
The Texas Senate on Tuesday passed SB 1218, which would prohibit anyone from obtaining a marriage license with a document that lacks a photo, including an affidavit of sex change. Daniel Williams, field organizer with Equality Texas, said the bill’s author, state Sen. Donna Campbell, R-New Braunfels, stated that her intent with the bill was to require a photo be shown to get a marriage license. However, removing an affidavit of sex change from the list of documents that can be used to obtain marriage licenses could bar transgender people from marrying people of the opposite sex.
NEW REPORT TO DETAIL SUFFERING OF EUROPE’S TRANSGENDER CITIZENS
And finally, a new report is due to be released on IDAHO day, as Gay Star News reports:
Trans people are still suffering from discrimination, prejudice and persecution in Europe, a new report has found. Published on the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (17 May), it will expose the ‘bleak’ legal challenges trans people face across 49 countries in Europe. Transgender Europe (TGEU) will show which of the countries require sterilization in legal gender recognition and which do not provide for any procedures.
Whew – what a day!