Matt Baume’s Marriage News Watch – January 26th

Written by scott on January 26th, 2015

Matt BaumeThere’s a big fight underway right now in Alabama, with a Judge overturning a marriage ban and state officials refusing to obey the order to issue licenses.

Anti-gay politicians are threatening to ban all marriage licenses if the Supreme Court rules in favor of equality.

And one lawmaker even wants to send clerks to jail if they issue licenses to anyone — gay or straight.

Authored By Matt Baume – See the Full Story at AFER

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Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 25th

Written by scott on January 25th, 2015

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

Gambia: LGBT advocacy groups on Friday called upon the Obama administration ban Gambian officials responsible for human rights abuses from entering the U.S. full story

Ireland: Health minister Leo Varadkar, who came out as gay last week, is likely to relax the country’s blood donation ban on gay men within the year. full story

Italy: A man who lost his driver’s license after coming out 15 years ago finally won it back in court. full story

Russia: Lena Klimova, the founder of LGBTI kids’ support group Children-404 in Russia, has been fined close to $800 for supposedly violating the controversial “anti-gay propaganda law”. full story

UK: A senior general in the British Army who is married to a woman and has kids has revealed to a newspaper that he is gay, and is deciding whether to publicly out himself. full story

UK: Actors and activists are calling on the government to pardon the tens of thousands of British citizens who were persecuted under draconian anti-gay laws of the past. full story

USA, Alabama: The Alabama Probate Judges Association is trying to limit Friday’s marriage equality decision to just the plaintiffs. full story

USA, Alabama: Sharon Steinmann at looks at Friday’s marriage equality ruling. full story

USA, Iowa: Saturday’s Iowa Freedom Summit was missing a key ingredient – any discussion of same sex marriage. full story

USA, Louisiana: Gov. Bobby Jindal, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, mendorsed a federal constitutional amendment to ban same sex marriage. full story

USA, Michigan: GOP Senator Mike Shirkey has reintroduced a “right to discriminate” bill, which would allow individuals or businesses to seek exemptions to government regulations they feel may substantially burden their sincerely held religious beliefs. full story

USA, New Jersey: Same-sex couples who want to end their civil unions have the same right to no-fault divorce as married couples, a New Jersey trial judge has ruled. full story

USA, Oklahoma: Monica Hesse at The Washington Post looks at how the state is dealing with the sudden arrival of marriage equality. full story

USA, Tennessee: A private, non-denominational Christian-based school in Nashville has turned away prospective students because their parents, one of whom is a local pastor, are gay. full story

USA, Virginia: State senator Janet Howell’s bill that would have allowed unmarried gay couples to adopt children has been shot down by Republicans. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 24th

Written by scott on January 24th, 2015

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

USA: 73% of Americans say they would support a professional sports team signing a gay or lesbian athlete. full story

USA: Now that Alabama has marriage equality, we have a new Wikipedia map. full story

Wikipedia Marriage Equality Map

USA: Some states that have marriage equality still forbid teaching about gay sex. full story

USA: Human Rights Campaign has published its annual State Equality Index and warns that despite marriage equality in most states, other inequalities still exist. full story

USA: Will Chief Justice Roberts side with marriage equality – so he can limit the scope of the decision? full story

USA: George Takei has put out a hilarious new video “My Husband’s Not Straight”, lampooning TLC’s show about (not) gay Mormons. full story

USA, Arkansas: Attorney General Leslie Rutledge asked the state Supreme Court to hold new oral arguments in the lawsuit over the state’s marriage equality ban because two new justices weren’t at a hearing on the case last year. full story

USA, California: State judges will no longer be allowed to participate in nonprofit youth groups, such as the Boy Scouts of America, that discriminate against LGBT people. full story

USA, Florida: A Duval County lawyer will file a lawsuit to reverse Duval Clerk of Courts Ronnie Fussell’s decision to close the county’s wedding chapel. full story

USA, Florida: Marriage equality in the state should make adoption easier for same sex couples. full story

USA, Texas: HRC won’t defend Plano ordinance, calling it transphobic. full story


Federal Judge Strikes Down Alabama Marriage Equality Ban With No Stay

Written by scott on January 24th, 2015

Alabama mapThe number of states with marriage equality just jumped to 37.

The Washington Blade reports:

A federal judge in Alabama has become the latest to strike down a state ban on same-sex marriage, ruling against the Yellowhammer State’s prohibition on gay nuptials on the basis that it violates the Fourteenth Amendment. In a 10-page decision on Friday, U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade, an appointee of George W. Bush, issued summary judgement in favor of a plaintiff same-sex couple, finding Alabama marriage laws violate the couple’s right to due process and equal protection under the U.S. Constitution.

“There has been no evidence presented that these marriage laws have any effect on the choices of couples to have or raise children, whether they are same-sex couples or opposite-sex couples,” Granade writes. “In sum, the laws in question are an irrational way of promoting biological relationships in Alabama.”

We’re guessing that, absent a stay, couples will start Monday morning, unless a county clerk decides to open on the weekend. AG Luther Strange has asked the judge for a stay.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Alabama.


Featured Gay Friendly Wedding Vendor: Paradise Dream, Kihei, Maui, Hawaii

Written by scott on January 23rd, 2015

Paradise Dream, Kihei, Maui, Hawaii

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.

Gay Wedding Planners in Kihei, Maui, HI, USA. Picture this … bare feet on sand the texture of ground sugar, the fragrance of tropical flowers borne on gentle trade winds caress your skin, as the Maui sun bids Aloha to another day in paradise.

See the Paradise Dream Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in Hawaii


Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 23rd

Written by scott on January 23rd, 2015

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

International: LA Galaxy player Robbie Rogers doubled down on his criticism of FIFA and its decision to hold the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in Russia and Qatar respectively. full story

International: Actor Patrick Stewart says “Supporting gay rights is natural.” full story

Ireland: Top Irish LGBT equality and civil rights groups from Dublin have been holding meetings with influential and supportive community leaders in New York and Washington seeking their support. full story

Portugal: Parliament rejected draft laws that would have allowed gay couples to adopt children for the third time, although the vote margin was smaller than ever. full story

Singapore: Singaporean LGBT rights activist and blogger Alex Au has been found guilty of contempt for a post critical of the city’s anti-gay law. full story

Spain: Spain’s King Felipe VI, 46, has posed for the cover of a local gay magazine as a show of support for the LGBT community. full story

King Felipe V! of Spain

Uganda: The Ugandan Refugee Law Project, accused of promoting homosexuality, has now re-opened. full story

UK, England: A transgender woman has alleged that insurance company Aviva fired her because she refused to stop using the women’s restrooms. full story

USA: David Taffet at The Dallas Voice lays out the Supreme Court schedule so far – plaintiff briefs due 2/27, state responses 3/27, reply briefs 4/17, and speculates on a 6/29 ruling. full story

USA: Amazon Prime is making all episodes of its hit series ‘Transparent’ free for Saturday only. full story


USA: The “satisfaction with the acceptance of gays and lesbians” is the same this year as last year – 53%. Whatever that means. full story

USA: US Catholic and Evangelical leaders are to publish a statement about the “threat” of same-sex marriage called “The Two Shall Become One Flesh”, the culmination of three years work. full story

USA: Only 13 states give transgender students the right to use the correct bathroom. full story

USA: Rpbert Barnes at the Washington Post looks back at the last year in marriage equality, and what has changed between Supreme Court rulings. full story

USA: David J. Herzig at Slate argues the Supreme Court will rule in favor of marriage equality because not doing so would have a host of practical negative implications in 16 states. full story

USA: Danielle Paquette at The Washington Post says we need more data on transgender lives. full story

USA: Ted Cruz is still pushing a federal anti-marriage equality amendment. full story

USA: US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is paling around with NOM co-founder Robert George ahead of the marriage equality hearing. full story

USA: The game show Jeopardy poked fun at marriage equality opponents with this clue: “Some opponents of same-sex marriage say, hey gay folks, how about these? Wouldn’t these be good enough?” The question: “What are civil unions?” full story

USA: Dave Yoshida at LGBT Weekly looks at the tax implications for the many newly married same sex couples this year. full story

USA: A new poll shows that almost 35 percent said they would be somewhat or much less likely to vote for a candidate who opposed marriage equality, while on;ly 31% were more likely to support them. full story

USA, Illinois: Chicago’s city council has banned the profiling of people who are transgender. full story

USA, Kentucky: The Advocate checks in on the marriage equality situation in Kentucky. full story

USA, Missouri: State officials have filed a motion to put the marriage case on hold in the Eighth Circuit until the Supreme Court rules. full story

USA, Missouri: The Eighth Circuit denied the state’s request, saying the litigation will proceed despite the U.S. Supreme Court’s agreement to take up the issue. full story

USA, Nebraska: State officials want their marriage case put on hold too until the Supreme Court issues its decision. full story

USA, Nebraska: A large crowd gathered at the state capitol to show their support for LGBT protections. full story

USA, Oklahoma: Republican Oklahoma lawmaker Todd Russ, R-Cordell, has introduced a bill that would do away with all marriage licenses in the state. full story

USA, Oklahoma: Anti-gay legislator Sally Kern (R) introduced three new bills – one to cut off pay from clerks who issue marriage licenses to same sex couples, one to confirm the legality of “conversion therapy” for youth, and a “right to discriminate” bill for state businesses. full story

USA, Virginia: A Virginia Senate committee on Thursday struck down a bill that would have banned “conversion therapy” for minors in the state. full story


Featured Gay Friendly Wedding Vendor: Weddings A La Heart, Kailua-Kona, Big Island, Hawaii

Written by scott on January 22nd, 2015

Weddings A La Heart

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.

Gay Wedding Officiants in Kailua-Kona, Big Island, HI, USA. Aloha Gay beloveds. I warmly welcome you to Weddings A La Heart and eagerly await creating a one-of-a kind sunset soul ceremony for you both, to touch your hearts deeply. Complete wedding services and civil unions with gracious personal service from beginning to end. Gorgeous private and public Hawaiian beach venues. We also travel anywhere in the world bringing the sacred and romantic traditions of the gay Hawaiian ceremony to you.

See the Weddings A La Heart Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in Hawaii


Marriage Equality Round-Up – January 22nd

Written by scott on January 22nd, 2015

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

Egypt: The country’s government is telling the media to boost its anti-gay coverage, an editor has claimed. full story

France: Three Parisians were fined this week for inciting violence against LGBTI people on Twitter by using a “burn the gays” hashtag, the first time a French court has convicted for anti-gay abuse on the social network. full story

Ireland: The wording of the marriage equality referendum in Ireland is now agreed upon: “Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex.” full story

Ireland: “Mrs Brown’s Boys” star Eilish O’Carroll has urged people to back marriage equality in the country’s upcoming referendum. full story

USA: Japan’s best-known living author Haruki Murakami has said he supports marriage equality. full story

Mexico: Five same-sex couples applied for marriage licenses in Tijuana and were denied. full story

Ukraine: A look at the LGBT community’s fight for rights and acceptance in the country. full story

UK: A McDonald’s branch in Leicester has suspended a security guard after he demanded that two men stop kissing, and has apologized to the couple. full story

UK, England: Irish politician Dominic Hannigan has become the first member of the Irish parliament to enter into a same-sex marriage, marrying his partner in London. full story

USA: Philadelphia’s William Way LGBT Center has created a 50-year timeline of important moments in LGBT rights activism. full story

USA: When President Obama celebrated the rapid advances of marriage equality across the country during his State of the Union address, House majority leader John Boehner remained seated, unamused. full story

USA: Mike Huckabee is thumbing his nose at the US Supreme Court, saying states can ignore a possible pro marriage equality decision. full story

USA: NOM has been busted once again for photoshopping a rally crowd to make it appear bigger. full story

NOM Fake Photo

USA: Likely Republican Presidential candidate Ben Carson spoke with Iowa talk radio host Steve Deace last night and suggested that Congress should oust judges who rule in favor of same-sex marriage. full story

USA, Colorado: Senate Republicans killed a Democrat-sponsored bill aimed at fixing a consequence of the state’s overlapping recognition of both civil unions and gay marriage, which currently requires same-sex couples who have entered into both to get divorced twice. full story

USA, Colorado: The identity of the man who asked a bakery to make an anti-gay cake and has now filed a complaint against it has been revealed. full story

USA, Connecticut: A transgender police officer fired last June has filed a lawsuit alleging discrimination based on sexual orientation and wrongful termination. full story

USA, Florida: A Jacksonville wedding planner told a lesbian couple she could not plan their wedding because of her Christian beliefs. full story

USA, Florida: HRC Orlando/Central Florida is hosting a discussion panel tonight about the impact of Florida’s marriage equality ruling. full story

USA, Georgia: The state has asked a federal judge to halt a marriage equality case until the Supreme Court rules. full story

USA, Idaho: The state’s House of Representatives will review an amendment to the state’s non-discrimination bill that would add explicit protections for sexual orientation and gender identity. full story

USA. Michigan: Governor Rick Snyder is urging the GOP-led Legislature to keep alive a bill that would amend Michigan’s civil rights law to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation. full story

USA, Mississippi: The Starkville board voted 5-2 to override Mayor Parker Wiseman’s veto of its previous vote to repeal the pro-LGBT resolution, and voted to override Wiseman’s veto of its vote to repeal domestic partner benefits for city employees, which passed in September. full story

USA, Mississippi: Joe.My.God has the video of a state Supreme Court hearing on a same sex divorce case. full story

USA, Nebraska: Nebraska Democratic lawmakers introduced three bills Wednesday that would ban discrimination against LGBT residents. full story

USA, New York: Leythe Jamal, the transgender woman suing Saks Fifth Avenue for discrimination, got help from the Human Rights Campaign and the National Center for Lesbian Rights in the form of an amicus brief. full story

USA, New York: Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in his state of the state speech Wednesday that the Legislature should pass a bill to add “gender identity or expression” as a protected class. full story

USA: A candidate to lead the North Carolina Democratic Party has apologised for calling her transgender opponent a “man”. full story

USA, Ohio: The Athens City Council became the second city government in the state to unanimously approve a resolution supporting marriage equality during council’s meeting on Tuesday. full story


Featured Gay Friendly Wedding Vendor: Rabbi Jeffrey Kurtz-Lendner, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Written by scott on January 21st, 2015

Rabbi Jeffrey Kurtz-LendnerPeriodically 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.

Gay Wedding Officiant in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA. Rabbi Kurtz-Lendner is a member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis and will perform Jewish ceremonies for gay and lesbian couples in accordance with his religious policies for all couples. He is most delighted to welcome all people and recognizes the fundamental humanity of all individuals.

See Rabbi Jeffrey’s Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in Fort Lauderdale.


Chile: House Passes Civil Unions Bill

Written by scott on January 21st, 2015

Chile FlagThe bill had previously been passed by the Senate on a 28-6 vote in a slightly different version.

The Washington Blade reports:

The Chilean House of Representatives on Tuesday approved a bill that would allow same-sex couples to enter into civil unions. La Tercera, a Chilean newspaper, reported the measure passed by an 86-23 vote margin with two abstentions. “People of the same-sex will have the opportunity to demonstrate that they have the right to be happy,” said gay Congressman Claudio Arriagada Macaya after the vote, according to La Tercera.

Rolando Jimenez, president of the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation, a Chilean LGBT advocacy group, also praised the vote. “We dedicate this day, this moment, to the gay and lesbian families that have suffered a historic burden of misunderstanding and prejudices,” he said in a statement. “Today it will be the state’s turn to strengthen them and protect them on equal terms.”

Some opponents cried foul, claiming God had sparked a forest fire last year in protest.

President Michelle Bachelet says she will sign the bill when it reaches her desk.

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