Marriage Equality Round-Up – March 28th

Written by scott on March 28th, 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!

Pop Culture: Out entertainer Steve Grand says it’s time for trans people to stop taking the back seat. full story

Israel: The 40 Years of Pride conference, organized by The Aguda and A Wider Bridge, will bring together a diverse group of LGBTQ leaders from around the world this summer in Israel from June 9-11. full story

Italy: Italy’s neo-Nazi New Front Party will stage a public burning of LGBT children’s books in Milan today. full story

book burning

Jamaica: LGBT rights advocates on Thursday interrupted Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller’s speech to members of her country’s diaspora who were meeting at a New York church. full story

Japan: Tokyo is moving to be more LGBT-inclusive by the 2020 Olympics. full story

Philippines: Anti-gay Christian activist Bill Whatcott has moved to the Philippines after claiming that he was forced to leave Canada. full story

UK: UKIP trans politician Kellie Maloney has u-turned to support same-sex marriage and families and says her party must do the same or they are ‘cavemen’. full story

UK: David Cameron has said that he has personally raised the issue of Russia’s poor record on gay rights with Vladimir Putin.
full story

UK: The Lib Dems have pledged to extend same-sex marriage law to allow any UK national to marry a non-UK national same-sex partner at embassies.
full story

USA, Northern Ireland: A bakery which declined to make a cake with a pro-equal marriage slogan has denied that it discriminated against a customer, but was asked why it makes cakes for Halloween. full story

USA: The Sharon Herald looks at which protestant churches now support marriage equality and which still oppose it. full story

Protestant Churches

USA: The Family Research Council is calling for an army of God to rise up to fight the evil gay rights movement. full story

USA: The National Black Church Initiative today declared that they are furious with the Presbyterian Church’s decision to endorse same-sex marriage. full story

USA: Fifty-seven senators voted that legally-married, same-sex spouses should have “equal access to the Social Security and veterans benefits they have earned and receive equal treatment under the law pursuant to the Constitution of the United States,” including all 46 Democrats and 11 Republicans. full story

USA: State officials in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee are filing their merits briefs in four Supreme Court challenges to their same-sex marriage bans. The states are filing in defense of the bans. full story

USA: ABC News looks at the rash of anti-gay right to discriminate bills across 16 states. full story

USA: Likely Presidential candidate Rand Paul claimed marriage equality was the result of a moral crisis in the country. full story

USA: Gant Daily asks if the Indiana law signals the start of another culture war in the 2016 election. full story

USA: The Williams Institute at UCLA is partnering with Columbia University and the Fenway Institute to conduct what they hope will be one of the most comprehensive studies of the US’s transgender and gender non-conforming populations to date. full story

USA, Arkansas: An Indiana-style bill allowing individuals to discriminate based on religious beliefs has just passed the Arkansas Senate. full story

USA, Arkansas: The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and HRC Arkansas on Friday condemned the Arkansas Senate’s passage of HB 1228 and urged the Governor to veto it. full story

USA, California: Hundreds of alumni of Costa Mesa High School have signed an online letter condemning CMSH graduate Matt McLaughlin, a mysterious recluse and postal-box lawyer who wants to circulate a California initiative called the “Sodomite Suppression Act.” full story

USA, Idaho: Republican state representative Paul Shepard compared gay people to slave owners: “[Slave owners] weren’t terrible rotten horrible people”, explaining that they just made bad choices. And that’s how I see gay people. full story

USA, Indiana: http://www.sharonherald.com/community/faith/presbyterians-s-ok-solidifies-gay-marriage-support-among-mainline-protestants/article_0abccad9-a0bb-5de0-b518-e370f9bd336a.html full story

USA, Indiana: Gogobot, the travel research and planning site has updated both its Indiana state destination page, and also all 400 plus of its city destination pages in Indiana including Indianapolis, Fort Wayne and Evansville with a warning about traveling to the state. full story

USA, Indiana: Erik Deckers, a travel writer for the Indiana Office of Tourism Development, is resigning from his job in an act of solidarity with those who will be affected by the discriminatory new law. full story

USA, Indiana: The White House slammed Indiana for passing the state’s new right to discriminate law. full story

USA, Indiana: The State of Indiana’s website was apparently hacked in response to Gov. Mike Pence’s signing of a controversial “religious freedom” bill. full story

USA, Indiana: Celebrities are helping the hashtag #BoycottIndiana pick up steam on twitter. full story

USA, Indiana: Apple’s chief executive, Tim Cook, has joined other tech firms in denouncing a law passed in the US state of Indiana, which some argue could allow businesses to discriminate against gay and lesbian customers. full story

USA, Indiana: A restaurant owner called in to a local radio show to say he is glad the right to discriminate bill has passed and that he already refused to serve gay couples. full story

USA, Indiana: Ellen DeGeneres slammed Indiana on Twitter. full story

Ellen Degeneres tweet

USA, Texas: Dallas mayoral candidate Rich Sheridan has been arrested in connection with an anti-gay graffiti case from June 2014. full story

USA, Washington: A Washington state florist who refused to provide flowers for a same-sex wedding was fined $1,000 Friday, plus $1 for court costs and fees. full story

USA, Wisconsin: The state’s attempt to ban same-sex marriages will cost taxpayers more than $1 million in legal fees. full story

 

Featured Gay Wedding Vendor: Princeton Manor, Princeton, Massachusetts

Written by scott on March 27th, 2015

Princeton Manor

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.

Princeton Manor is a country summer estate an hour from Boston. Lawns, gardens, views, and the associated farm combine to make this a peaceful, spiritual venue. We are best suited to intimate events from two to seventy five. Located in Central Massachusetts, Princeton Manor is perched on the side of Wachusett Mountain, convenient to Boston and other Massachusetts locations. Goat Ridge Farm is part of this country estate.

See the Princeton Manor Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in Massachusetts

 

Marriage Equality Round-Up – March 27th

Written by scott on March 27th, 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!

Pop Culture: The TV show “Scandal” is featuring a same sex marriage. full story

Pop Culture: Zack Ford at Think Progress looks at where LGBT representation in TV is going. full story

Cameroon: Cameroonian lawyer Alice Nkom says her country will never get on top of its HIV epidemic if it continues to prevent gay citizens from accessing healthcare through repressive laws. full story

Ireland: The government has indicated that there will be no religious opt-out clause for businesses that do not want to provide goods and services for same-sex weddings, reports the Independent. full story

Italy: By a vote of 14-8 Italy’s Senate Judiciary Committee today advanced a civil unions bill that would also allow gay couples to adopt each others’ children and visit each other in the hospital. full story

Slovenia: The Slovene National Assembly today approved a bill that bans the proposed referendum on repealing same-sex marriage. full story

UK: Ed Miliband has said among the two things he most admires about David Cameron is his commitment to same-sex marriage. full story

UK: Microsoft’s UK Chief Marketing Officer, Philippa Snare, has questioned the ice-cream company, Ben & Jerry’s, for marketing itself as a supporter of gay marriage – despite the fact that Microsoft has itself featured a same-sex wedding in one of its marketing campaigns. full story

USA: Televangelist Pat Robertson told a father that his gay son’s plan to adopt a child with his husband was “wrong.” full story

USA: Anti-gay campaigner Peter LaBarbera has compared the work of LGBT activists to recruiting children like Hitler. full story

USA: Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly said that state governors should “refuse to enforce” a Supreme Court decision striking down bans on same-sex marriage, reports Right Wing Watch. full story

USA, Alabama: Pike County Probate Judge Wes Allen called the fight against marriage equality a “spiritual battle”. full story

USA, Arkansas: An effort to prevent Arkansas government from infringing on someone’s religious beliefs was revived on March 24, with a state Senate panel advancing a bill that critics have called a thinly veiled endorsement of discrimination against gays and lesbians. full story

USA, Arkansas: Gov. Asa Hutchinson says he would sign into law a right to discriminate measure that opponents have said would open the door to state-sanctioned discrimination against gays and lesbians. full story

USA, Arkansas: The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) President and Arkansas native Chad Griffin announced that the organization will run a full-page ad in the San Jose Mercury News spotlighting pending legislation in Arkansas targeting LGBT people and religious minorities. The ad will also run in the Wall Street Journal. full story

USA, Arkansas: Dr. Julian Bond, a major leader in the American civil rights movement, expressed outrage at discriminatory anti-LGBT legislation in Arkansas full story

USA, California: Christian activist Matt McLaughlin, author of the Sodomite Suppression Act, graduated from law school at Virginia’s George Mason University, which just said it will not condemn the odious initiative. full story

USA, Colorado: A bill to allow transgender people to change the gender listings on their birth certificates without undergoing sex reassignment surgery has passed its first test in the Colorado Legislature. full story

USA, Florida: Discrimination against LGBT workers in Florida costs employers more than $362-million a year, according to a report released today by Equality Means Business, a coalition of major employers in the state. full story

USA, Florida: There was a brief meeting at the Metro Wellness Center in St. Petersburg on March 24 in support of opposing the Transgender Discrimination Bill full story

USA, Florida: A new poll says that 67% of Floridians agree that marriage equality had absolutely no effect on their lives. full story

USA, Georgia: Members of a Georgia House panel made some changes to a divisive “religious freedom” bill, but left opponents who say it could provide legal cover for discrimination against gays and transgender people dissatisfied. full story

USA, Georgia: A divisive religious freedom bill stalled Thursday in a Georgia House committee after a Republican member of the panel successfully added anti-discrimination language to the proposal. full story

USA, Indiana: The Human Rights Campaign has condemned Indiana Governor Mike Pence for signing the state’s right to discriminate law. full story

USA, Indiana: Lambda Legal also slammed Pence for signing the bill. full story

USA, Indiana: The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana says a religious objections bill that Gov. Mike Pence signed is a backlash to same-sex marriage in the state. full story

USA, Indiana: SalesForce.com’s Marc Benioff: “We are forced to dramatically reduce our investment in Indiana based on our employee’s & customer’s outrage over the Religious Freedom Bill.” full story

USA, Indiana: George Takei, who earlier this week threatened to boycott Indiana if the state’s anti-gay “religious freedom” bill became law, tore into Gov. Mike Pence on Facebook today after Pence added his signature to the bill. full story

USA, Indiana: A gay top official with the Democratic National Committee in New Hampshire on Thursday slammed the recently signed religious discrimination law in Indiana as “outrageous,” warning 2016 presidential candidates that supporting such measures won’t fare well in New Hampshire’s early primary. full story

USA, Indiana: The NCAA is expressing concern about the new law ahead of next week’s men’s basketball Final Four in Indianapolis. full story

USA, Indiana: San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has decided to sever ties with Indiana, issuing a public statement forbidding city employees from using public funds to travel to the state of Indiana. full story

USA, Indiana: Broadway star Audra McDonald sent a series of messages through Twitter to Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, chastising him for signing the right to discriminate bill. full story

USA, Indiana: Likely Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton denounced the new right to discriminate law as an attempt to enable discrimination against LGBT people. full story

USA, Indiana: In reaction to the new law, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman says the company will not expand in states that pass right to discriminate laws. full story

USA, Indiana: The Advocate rounds up some of the other reactions to the new law. full story

USA, Maryland: State lawmakers on Wednesday approved two separate bills — Senate Bill 743 and House Bill 862 — that would remove the expensive roadblocks facing trans individuals born in Maryland in an effort to update their birth certificates. full story

USA, Montana: A Republican lawmaker proposed Wednesday that the Legislature ask voters if they want additional religious protections in Montana’s constitution. full story

USA, Ohio: At their March 16 meeting, the Yellow Springs Village Council unanimously passed a resolution supporting marriage equality, making the Village the third municipality in Ohio to endorse same-sex marriage. full story

USA, Puerto Rico: The Liberty Counsel filed a motion seeking permission to file a brief at the First Circuit Court of Appeals in defense of Puerto Rico’s ban on marriage equality. full story

USA, Texas: A federal judge has temporarily blocked the Obama administration from implementing a new rule to ensure married same-sex couples have access to the Family & Medical Leave Act even if they live in non-marriage equality states. full story

USA, Texas: A bill seeking to continue Texas’ ban on gay marriage, no matter how the courts rule, received strong opposition during a late Wednesday public hearing — much of it from religious leaders and believers who said conservative Christians do not have the sole perspective on marriage. full story

USA, Washington DC: The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington signed on to a letter to members of the U.S. Senate on March 20 calling for Congress to block a D.C. bill that would protect LGBT students from discrimination at religious schools operating in the city. full story

 

Governor Mike Pence Gives Indiana the Right to Discriminate Against Gays

Written by scott on March 27th, 2015

Governor Mike PenceGovernor Mike Pence opened the floodgates to anti LGBT discrimination, signing a right to discriminate bill yesterday.

Think Progress reports:

As expected, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) signed into law the so-called “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” (RFRA) Thursday morning in a private ceremony. Proponents of this bill had openly admitted that its intent was to enable businesses to discriminate against same-sex couples, but Pence dismissed those claims in a statement he issued about the bill. “This bill is not about discrimination,” he said, “and if I thought it legalized discrimination in any way in Indiana, I would have vetoed it. In fact, it does not even apply to disputes between private parties unless government action is involved. For more than twenty years, the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act has never undermined our nation’s anti-discrimination laws, and it will not in Indiana.”

Somebody has his head, um, let’s just say in the sand.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.

Image via FB – Governor Mike Pence

 

Featured Gay Wedding Vendor: David Gordon Photography, New York, New York

Written by scott on March 26th, 2015

David Gordon Photography

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.

Don’t settle for boring straight wedding photography. (pun intended :-) I’ve been shooting events for over twenty years, but like most other photographers no doubt, same sex weddings have always been a relatively small part of my business. It certainly hasn’t been for lack of interest on my part. As a gay male and photographer in New York City, I’m absolutely thrilled about the legalization of gay marriage in New York, and look forward to photographing lots of NY same sex weddings for couples who have been waiting a long time for this to come about.

See the David Gordon Photography Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in New York

 

Marriage Equality Round-Up – March 26th

Written by scott on March 26th, 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!

Australia: A much anticipated debate on gay marriage in Australia’s Senate was postponed indefinitely because the majority Liberal Party refused to allow a conscience vote. full story

UK: The British Social Attitudes report shows 48% of conservative UKIP supporters back same-sex marriage. full story

UK, Northern Ireland: A legal case involving a Christian baker who refused to make a cake bearing a pro-marriage equality slogan goes to court this week. full story

USA: Defense Secretary Ash Carter has gotten pushback from senior military leaders on whether the Pentagon should lift its ban on transgender people serving in the armed forces. full story

USA: Pat Robertson appears to be giving up the fight against marriage equality: “You better get on your knees and pray and let the Lord take care of it because there isn’t a whole lot else you can do.” full story

USA: Metro Weekly has gathered 10 of Presidential Candidate Ted Cruz’s anti gay statements. full story

USA, Alabama: Several marriage equality and adoption cases may soon be dismissed because the couples are now married. The Federal case continues. full story

USA, Arkansas: A Senate panel advanced a right to discriminate bill that would ban state and local government from taking action that would burden someone’s religious beliefs unless a “compelling governmental interest” is proven. full story

USA, California: California Attorney General Kamala Harris on Wednesday moved to block a proposed ballot initiative that calls for gays to be executed. full story

USA, Colorado: After the pent-up demand was released with the passage of marriage equality in the state, the pace of same sex weddings has slowed. full story

USA, Connecticut: Connecticut’s Legislative Regulation Review Committee approved a regulation that repeals the ban on coverage for the treatment of gender dysphoria, the diagnostic term used to refer to discomfort or distress caused by a difference between a person’s gender identity and their sex assigned at birth. full story

USA, Florida: Watermark takes a look at the anti-gay bills making their way through the Florida legislature even as an LGBT rights bill languishes in committee. full story

USA, Idaho: An Idaho Republican lawmaker’s political website domanin, which had expired, has been snapped up by a group claiming to be gay rights activists, decorated with rainbows and replaced with text requesting that the legislature meet with same-sex marriage supporters. full story

Idaho Lawmaker's new Rainbow Website

USA, Indiana: Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard is slamming the right to discriminate legislation passed by the state House and Senate that Governor Mike Pence has said he is “looking forward” to signing into law. full story

USA, Indiana: Leaders of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) wrote Wednesday to Gov. Mike Pence urging him to veto the right to discriminate bill. So proud – my Grandpa was a DoC minister. full story

USA, Indiana: A broad and growing chorus of voices including human rights groups, over 30 law scholars, NBA star Jason Collins, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, SalesForce, and Gen Con – Indianapolis’s largest attended conference, is urging Indiana Governor Mike Pence to veto the anti-lgbt religious exemption bill, SB 101. full story

USA, Indiana: Governor Mike Pence is ignoring them all, and will sign the bill today at a private ceremony. full story

USA, Kentucky: A bill proposing to offer cash rewards to people who reported trans students using the “wrong” bathroom has failed to pass. full story

USA, Missouri: At least four southeast Missouri Presbyterian churches have received letters threatening to burn their buildings to the ground following the Presbyterian Church USA’s decision last week to amend its constitution to perform same-sex marriages. full story

USA, North Dakota: LGBT rights supporters will once again try to pass a bill banning discrimination. full story

USA, Ohio: On Wednesday, the Cincinnati City Council passed a resolution supporting marriage equality and appreciation for the work of Why Marriage Matters Ohio, a grassroots public education campaign to build support for marriage equality in Ohio. full story

USA, Puerto Rico: Today, several senators and representatives in Puerto Rico filed a request to allow them to file an out-of-time friend-of-the-court brief defending the marriage ban. full story

USA, Texas: Late last night a committee of the Texas House took public comments about Rep Cecil Bell’s bill that would forbid county clerks from issuing any marriage licenses full story

USA, Texas: The Texas Legislative Board released one fiscal impact analysis that indicates a bill to strip county clerks from issuing marriage licenses and cede control to the Texas Secretary of State office would cost $2.4 million in the first two years. full story

USA, Virginia: Parental complaints have prompted a Virginia school board to reverse a decision that respected a fourth grader’s gender identity, forcing her either back into the boys’ bathroom, or into single-stall or staff restrooms. full story

USA, Washington DC: At an event hosted by the Heritage Foundation, John G West (right) from creationist organization the Discovery Institute spoke out in favor of “ex-gay” therapy, saying the bans harm young people. full story

 

Featured Gay Wedding Vendor: Superior Sounds, New York, New York

Written by scott on March 25th, 2015

Superior Sounds

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.

Our professional DJ setups are equipped with only the finest state-of-the-art digital CD sound systems. They produce clear, quality sound at a comfortable volume level. Our equipment is carefully adjusted to the acoustics of your room. The speakers are strategically positioned so that your guests can effortlessly socialize at surrounding tables.

See the Superior Sounds Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in New York

 

Marriage Equality Round-Up – March 25th

Written by scott on March 25th, 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: The United Nation will now give benefits to all spouses of gay U.N. staffers who are legally married after Russia and other opponents of same-sex marriage failed Tuesday in an attempt to scuttle the plan by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. full story

Pop Culture: Gay Country Star Steve Grand is speaking up for transgender rights as his new album releases. full story

Australia: The federal Coalition party room did not discuss a free vote on marriage equality in a Tuesday morning meeting, despite a concerted email campaign from both sides of the debate. full story

Australia: A pro-marriage equality Senator received a nasty bit of unsigned hate mail, which he then posted on his Facebook page. full story

Hate Mail

Sweden: The official dictionary of the Swedish language will introduce a gender-neutral pronoun in April, editors at the Swedish Academy have announced. “Hen” will be added to “han” (he) and “hon” (she) as one of 13,000 new words in the latest edition of the Swedish Academy’s SAOL. full story

UK, Northern Ireland: The Christian owner of a bakery due to go to court over the refusal to bake a pro-same-sex marriage cake has said he will not back down. full story

USA, Northern Ireland: Hundreds of people including three senior DUP politicians had to be refused entry to a full-to-capacity Waterfront Hall in Belfast last night as thousands of Christians turned up for a rally in support of the Newtownabbey bakery firm which is going to court to defend their refusal to bake a cake for a gay activist. full story

USA: The American Family Association today published a full-page message to the Supreme Court in the Washington Post. full story

AFA Letter to Supremes

USA: Truth Wins Out announced the release today of the second video in its “Flipping the Script on Religious Freedom” campaign, to highlight the real-world consequences of laws that purport to protect religious liberty, – See more at: http://sdgln.com/commentary/2015/03/24/video-spoofs-dramatizes-unintended-consequences-religious-freedom-bills#sthash.zcysKMej.dpuf full story

USA: Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson has some advice for gays – find you a woman and marry her. full story

USA: Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK) introduced a bill that would endorse the idea that businesses and organizations should be allowed to use taxpayer funds to discriminate against married same-sex couples. full story

USA, Alabama: A new hearing in Federal Court on the marriage equality case is scheduled for 3/26. full story

USA, Alabama: Republican Sen. Gerald Allen of Tuscaloosa introduced the bill last week specifying groups that could refuse to participate in adoptions and foster care placements that violate their religious beliefs. full story

USA, California: A California activist says she is “fighting fire with fire” by proposing an “intolerant jackass” ballot initiative, which would require anyone proposing a ballot measure involving killing gay people to be punished with a year of sensitivity training and a significant donation to an LGBT rights group. full story

USA, California: In response to the proposed Sodomite Suppression Act, California state Assemblyman Richard Bloom (photo) and Assemblyman Evan Low, both Democrats, have introduced a bill that would raise to fee to file for a ballot measure from $200 to $8000. full story

USA, Indiana: The Gen Con gaming convention has sent a letter to Indiana governor Mike Pence threatening to pull its $50M convention, with a weekend turnstile attendance of 184,699 and unique attendance of 56,614, out of Indianapolis should Pence sign a bill headed to his desk that would allow businesses to discriminate against LGBT people based on religious beliefs. full story

USA, Indiana: Openly gay Star Trek actor George Takei promises to boycott Indiana if Governor Mike Pence signs the pending right to discriminate bill. full story

USA, Kansas: Equality House, located across the street from the Westboro Baptist Church compound, home to anti-gay extremists famous for their “Gods Hate Fags” protests, celebrated its second anniversary over the weekend with one big smooch. full story

USA, Maryland: Female same-sex couples in Maryland would have the same health care benefits for artificial insemination as heterosexual couples, under a bill passed by the state Senate. full story

USA, Michigan: A woman who was kicked out of her gym for complaining about a trans woman using the locker room is now suing the gym. full story

USA, Michigan: The state’s civil rights law doesn’t include protections for gay and transgender people, but the Michigan Civil Rights Commission has endorsed a model non-discrimination ordinance that does cover sexual orientation. full story

USA, Michigan: There are 37 states with marriage equality and the fact that Michigan isn’t one of them hurts the tourism industry’s bottom line, said a market researcher at the Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference on Tourism this week. full story

USA, Texas: A contentious debate is expected as a Texas House committee hears a bill barring state and local employees from licensing or recognizing same-sex marriages – even if the U.S. Supreme Court authorizes them. full story

USA, Washington: August Easton-Calabriaand has launched a Change.org petition asking the BSA to end its policy, which does not allow someone who is openly gay to participate in the organization once they turn 18, so his gay twin brother can stay in scouting. full story

USA, Washington DC: The second annual Ignatian LGBTQ and Ally Conference is scheduled to be held March 27-29 on the campus of Georgetown University, according to an announcement on the website of the New York-based group GLAAD. full story

USA, Washington DC: NOM has revealed the details of its third planned hate march in the US capital on 4/25. full story

USA, Wyoming: Plaintiffs who were successful in legalizing same-sex marriage in Wyoming are now seeking to recover nearly $95,000 in attorney’s fees and costs. full story

 

Marriage Equality Round-Up – March 24th

Written by scott on March 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!

Pop Culture: The conservative group “One Million Moms” is ever so pissed about Ellen’s new gay sitcom “One Big Happy”. full story

Ireland: David Quinn of the Iona Institute, anti-gay Catholic lobbying group has admitted that same-sex marriage is likely to pass an upcoming referendum in Ireland. full story

Jamaica: Maurice Tomlinson, an LGBT rights advocate suing Belize and Trinidad and Tobago for banning gays entering the countries, will not be deterred by death threats. full story

Uganda: Some lawmakers in parliament are balking at a request to pay a U.S. public relations firm to clean up Uganda’s anti-gay image with members of Congress. full story

UK: A report has been submitted by international law firm Clifford Chance to the HM Passport Office, which favors introducing gender ‘X’ passports in the UK. full story

USA: Evan Wolfson, head of Freedom to Marry, says the group will shut down if the US Supreme Court rules in favor of marriage equality in June. full story

USA: Republican Ted Cruz has confirmed his plans to run for President in 2016, and promised to uphold the ‘sacrament of marriage’. full story

USA: HRC is highlighting Ted Cruz’s history of rhetoric against LGBT community. full story

USA: HRC took presumed Presidential Candidate Jeb Bush to task for supporting right to discriminate bills. full story

USA: The former president of Bob Jones University has apologized for saying in 1980 that homosexuals should be stoned, calling his comments at the White House reckless and inflammatory. full story

USA, Alabama: Equality on Trial has a few updates from the state in the marriage equality fight there. full story

USA, Alabama: Alabama’s dispute over same-sex marriage surfaced Monday during a forum over a hotly contested property tax referendum for the Baldwin County School System. John Howard, a private school teacher and tax opponent, linked “gay marriage” to the tax issue as an example of unknown influences the federal government might pass along to public schools. full story

USA, California: April 10th will be the 12th annual Transgender Day of Empowerment in San Diego. full story

USA, California: The San Francisco Museum of Transgender History’s latest groundbreaking collection, created in collaboration with Los Angeles’s ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archive is Transgender Hirstory in 99 Objects: Legends & Mythologies. full story

USA, Colorado: A Denver Home Depot employee, with the backing of his pastor, has written a blistering open letter blasting the company for supporting an LGBT History Month initiative, saying “LGBT people are morally evil and self destructive.” full story

USA: full story

USA: full story

USA, Michigan: Michigan state Rep. Gary Glenn (R), a first-term Republican lawmaker from Larkin Township, is warning his constituents about a gay reporter’s “agenda”. full story

USA, Michigan: Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Stephen Henderson spoke out on WDET radio for marriage equality and the 322 same sex couples married in the state a year ago. full story

USA, Oklahoma: The Oklahoma Tax commission has denied an application for a personalized license plate supporting the LGBT community because it carries “a sexual connotation.” full story

Oklahoma LGBTALY plate

USA, Puerto Rico: Anti-Gay Politicians plan to sue to try to force the Governor to continue to defend the territory’s ban on marriage equality. full story

USA, Texas: Groups for and against LGBT rights staged dueling rallies at the Texas state capitol. full story

USA, Texas: Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, at an anti-gay rally in Austin, says if he didn’t speak out against same-sex marriage, he’d be guilty of treason. full story

USA, Texas: With the future of Texas’ constitutional ban on same-sex marriage uncertain, Republican leaders on Monday pledged to continue the state’s fight against allowing gay couples to wed. full story

USA, Texas: At the same time, Bridegroom filmmaker Shane Bitney-Crone spoke with University of Texas at Tyler students about his fight for equality. full story

USA, Texas: An Austin lesbian couple who are plaintiffs in a Texas same-sex marriage case are celebrating the birth of their second child. full story

USA, Wisconsin: Seventy-four percent of Republicans said that marriage equality has either had no impact (70%) or a positive impact (4%) on their lives. full story

 

Indiana Passes Anti Gay Right to Discriminate Bill

Written by scott on March 24th, 2015

Indiana Governor Mike PenceA right to discriminate law just passed the Indiana legislature.

Melanie Nathan reports:

Governor Mike Pence (R-Indiana) is being urged to veto SB 101, a piece of legislation that would be one of the most anti-LGBT laws in the nation. The legislation allows individuals to ignore any law they deem to conflict with their religious beliefs. A broad coalition of groups in Indiana is against the proposed law including civil rights and faith leaders, small business owners and the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.

A campaign has been launched to ask Governor Mike Pence to veto the bill:

“As a seminary graduate, this bill is deeply offensive,” said Heather Cronk, co-director of GetEQUAL. “The fact that religion is being used as a smokescreen for deeply hateful and vile sentiments by right-wing extremists, and then cemented into law, is not just un-Christian – it’s un-American.”

As activist Scott Wooledge puts it: “I’ve engaged in the battles against these bill in Arkansas, Arizona, and Tennessee in 2011. My message to those pushing these regressive, reactionary “religious freedom” laws is we will follow you to whatever state you try this and we will fight you aggressively. And my message to our allies and friends is we will pressure to defend your LGBT friends’ and workers’ right to live their lives free of discrimination.”

Scott McCorkle, CEO of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud of Indianapolis, has also said SB 101 threatens future growth in Indiana. “Our success is fundamentally based on our ability to attract and retain the best and most diverse pool of highly skilled employees…” The Indiana Chamber of Commerce, engine maker Cummins, health-care provider Eskenazi Health and pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Co. have also voiced concerns about SB 101’s impact on their businesses.

The Governor doesn’t seem inclined to listen:

Indiana Governor Mike Pence released a statement following the House passage yesterday of SB 101, a sweeping bill that would allow Indiana business owners to refuse service to customers based on religious beliefs.

Said Pence: “The legislation, SB 101, is about respecting and reassuring Hoosiers that their religious freedoms are intact. I strongly support the legislation and applaud the members of the General Assembly for their work on this important issue. I look forward to signing the bill when it reaches my desk.”

Dark days in Indiana – how soon will the first case test this new discriminatory law?

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