Featured Gay Friendly Wedding Vendor: Manhattan Penthouse, New York City, New York

Written by scott on August 20th, 2015

Manhattan Penthouse

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.

Welcome to the Manhattan Penthouse, where we offer the best 360 degree views in Manhattan. Manhattan Penthouse is on Fifth Avenue, occupying the top floor of a tall historic building in lower midtown. We offer a beautiful, unique wedding space – a large, glamorous loft with high ceilings, wide oak floors and huge arched windows with panoramic views of New York City. Our spectacular views are filled with skyscrapers, church spires, terraces, parks, bridges and historic facades, from Wall Street to Times Square, and from river to river. At night, the Empire State Building is lit up all around.

See the Manhattan Penthouse Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in New York


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 20th

Written by scott on August 20th, 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: Artist Conor Collins says he was “horrified” at the hate tweets received by Caitlyn Jenner in the days after she came out as transgender and decided to use the transphobic and nasty messages to recreate Jenner’s famous Annie Leibovitz portrait from the cover of Vanity Fair. full story

Cait Jenner

POP CULTURE: Caitlyn Jenner once again appears on the cover of Vanity Fair, just three months after the first iconic cover hit newsstands, for a special edition. full story

Vanity Fair

POP CULTURE: Former winner Louis Smith of Strictly Come Dancing has voiced his support for same-sex dance couples on the show. full story

AUSTRALIA: A bill to call for a public vote on same-sex marriage has been introduced in Australia. full story

MALAYSIA: The Prime Minister of Malaysia has cited Islam in saying that the human rights of LGBT people will not necessarily be protected. full story

NEW ZEALAND: Same-sex marriage has been legal in New Zealand for two years – and the world still hasn’t ended. full story

POLAND: A rainbow art installation in Poland will be taken down after being set alight several times, apparently because it is perceived as a symbol of LGBT rights. full story

ROMANIA: Prince Nicholas De Roumanie was stripped of his royal title last week, along with his posture to possibly inherit the throne. But was the beloved “people’s prince” ousted from royalty for being gay? full story

UGANDA: Uganda has said it wants to ban countries with same-sex marriage from adopting its children. full story

USA: Nancy Pelosi visited the Amazon campus in Seattle on Tuesday to discuss the Equality Act, which would guarantee explicit, permanent protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. full story

USA: Matt Baume looks at studies comparing gay and straight parenting. full story

USA: The GOP has found one democrat willing to jump on board their anti marriage equality amendment push – Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.). full story

Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.)

USA: August 19 marks the launch of the new U.S. Trans Survey, developed and supported by a coalition of LGBT groups and researchers, and over the next month, thousands of transgender people will complete the module, documenting their experiences in employment, housing, health care, and the criminal justice system. full story

USA: Bryan Fischer argued that he and others like him were “born a Christian” and repulsed by homosexuality and so they ought to be entitled to have their associated rights respected and protected by the government full story

USA: The Washington Blade looks at the state of trans rights in US sports. full story

Fallon Fox

USA, KENTUCKY: A federal judge clarified on Wednesday that his decision to let a Kentucky county clerk continue not issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples will expire on Aug. 31. full story

USA, MARYLAND: Baltimore resident Julie Baker, who scammed people with her “relentlessly gay front yard, announced this week that she’s returning all the money donated to her GoFundMe campaign. full story

USA, MICHIGAN: The marriage equality plaintiffs will wed soon, closing the chapter on their historic fight for the right to marry and legally adopt each other’s children. full story

USA, TEXAS: Anti-LGBT rights forces revive slogan from anti gay campaign i 1985. full story

USA, TEXAS: The Texas Supreme Court weighed in on ballot language for Houston’s LGBT rights ordinance, saying that voters in Houston must “yes” to whether they want an equal right ordinance in their city — and not “no” to whether the existing one should be repealed. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 19th

Written by scott on August 19th, 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: As drama maven Nene Leakes moves on from The Real Housewives of Atlanta, new housewife and transgender model Amiyah Scott is moving in. full story

Amiyah Scott

POP CULTURE: Statues opposite New York City’s iconic Stonewall Inn have been painted brown in protest of the new film. full story

stonewall statues

AUSTRALIA: Australian owned gay dating app Pash will give half of all profits earned in the 2015/16 financial year and free advertising to Australian Marriage Equality. full story


AUSTRALIA: Six police cars, six fire trucks and one hazardous materials unit were dispatched to deal with a glitter filled envelope yesterday after it appeared in the mail for an Australian lawmaker who opposes same-sex marriage. full story

AUSTRALIA: Wayne Bergmann, a businessman and former head of the Kimberley Land Council, called on more Aboriginal people to voice their support for same-sex marriage as he attacked the Abbott government for failing to support any immediate legislative change. full story

GAMBIA: The nephew of Gambian President Yahya Jammeh says he faces life in prison or even death in his homeland because of a pro-gay message he posted to his Facebook page. full story

Alagie Jammeh

UKRAINE: A Ukrainian court last week banned an LGBT Pride march that had been scheduled to take place in the city of Odessa on Saturday. full story

Ukraine activists

UNITED KINGDOM: A doctor has been removed from an ethics committee after he claimed LGBT people were an “abomination”. full story

USA: The White House for the first time has hired an openly transgender person as a member of its staff, LGBT advocates and the Obama administration announced Tuesday. full story

Raffi Freedman-Gurspan

USA: The State Department is fighting for the rights of gay envoys. full story

USA: Many Native American tribes have passed laws preventing same-sex marriages on tribal lands; other tribes still under federal jurisdiction generally discourage it. full story

USA: Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton said Tuesday the U.S. Supreme Court decision on gay nuptials “needs to be enforced across our country.” – See more at: https://www.washingtonblade.com/2015/08/18/clinton-pledges-to-enforce-marriage-equality-decision/#sthash.1Gw74Ij2.dpuf full story

USA: Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina on Monday refused to answer whether she supports the right of gay and lesbian couples to marry, full story

USA: Donald Trump has consistently opposed same-sex marriage and he voiced that again in his recent interview with NBC’s Church Todd. full story

USA: The Republican National Committee quietly agreed to a measure in favor of a federal right to discriminate bill. full story

USA, ALASKA: A short history of Alaska LGBT rights. full story

USA, CALIFORNIA: The California Senate has approved a bill that seeks to discourage frivolous ballot questions by raising filing costs, following a measure advocating the slayings of gay and lesbian people. full story

USA, KANSAS: A Kansas City woman has been granted joint custody of two children she had with her lesbian partner. full story

USA, PENNSYLVANIA: LGBT Catholics who plan to hold a series of events in Philadelphia during Pope Francis’s visit are looking for a new venue, having been told the events are not welcome in a Catholic church. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 18th

Written by scott on August 18th, 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 newest advertisement from H&M-owned & Other Stories proves trans people are beautiful, too. full story

& Other Stories trans ad

AUSTRALIA: Just two Australian government frontbenchers dared to show their face as a same-sex marriage bill was introduced today. full story

AUSTRALIA: John Challis, 87 and his partner Arthur Cheeseman, 83 – who live in Sydney, Australia – have been in a relationship for nearly fifty years but now say they want the right to marry before either of them passes away. full story

Elderly Gay Couple

AUSTRALIA: The TV show Q&A hosted an hour-long debate on marriage equality full story

AUSTRALIA: Late last week, a group of 30 Indigenous Australians, backed by evangelical Christian groups, presented an “Uluru bark petition” opposing marriage equality to the federal government via Senator Eric Abetz. full story

Aboriginal petition

AUSTRALIA/UNITED KINGDOM: A recent study focusing on the ‘life satisfaction’ of sexual minorities discovered that bisexual people have a lower life satisfaction than most. full story

CAYMAN ISLANDS: The Cayman Islands has passed a motion reaffirming its constitutional ban on same-sex marriage following a European Court verdict which could lead to gay civil unions across the British Caribbean full story

ISRAEL: An Israeli MP has refused to apologise – after referring to a Pride event as an “abomination parade”. full story

JAPAN: Last week, HRC staff met with Hideyuki Nishimura, a Japanese LGBT advocate from the organization Equal Marriage Alliance (EMA) Japan. full story

UNITED KINGDOM: A boy who was raped at a youth training centre was later given electric shock treatment in an effort to “cure” his homosexuality. full story

USA: The White House has been urged by a new petition to launch a formal investigation into the shockingly high number of trans people murdered every year. full story

USA, FLORIDA: Attorneys on behalf of the Florida Bureau of Vital Statistics filed a motion for clarification Aug. 13, essentially asking whether the Supreme Court ruling legalizing same sex marriage applies to vital statistics records and whether the existing gender-specific language somehow exempts the state from birth certificates. full story

USA, FLORIDA: The commissioners of Florida’s Osceola County, population 275,000. have unanimously approved an LGBT anti-discrimination ordinance with exemptions for religious belief. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: A federal judge on Monday gave a Kentucky county clerk room to continue denying marriage licenses to gays and lesbians while she takes her religious objections case to a higher court. full story

USA, TEXAS: Houston, the last major US city to pass LGBT protections, is now likely to be the site of the most expensive battle in history over a local nondiscrimination ordinance. full story

USA, TEXAS: Jim Cato and Joe Stapleton have settled their federal lawsuit against Hood County Clerk Katie Lang for what they’ve spent in attorneys’ fees. full story


Featured Lesbian Wedding Vendor: Valerie Coleman, Officiant, New York City, New York

Written by scott on August 17th, 2015

Valerie Coleman, Officiant

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.

If you’re looking at this website then you must be getting married, so let me start by congratulating you and your partner! This is an exciting time in our struggle for equality. I am so proud to be a New Yorker AND a wedding officiant who also happens to be a lesbian!

See Valerie’s Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors in New York


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 17th

Written by scott on August 17th, 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 first trailer for the BBC’s first transgender-focussed sitcom, Boy Meets Girl, has been released. full story

AUSTRALIA: Hundreds gathered on Bondi Beach on Sunday to show their support for marriage equality while the federal government debates taking the reform to a public vote. full story

Bondi Beach

USA: 69% of people are now in support of same-sex marriage – which appears to be so high that any mooted plebiscite would be effectively redundant. Just 25 percent of Australians now oppose same-sex marriage. full story

AUSTRALIA: On Thursday morning 106 clergy presented a letter of support for marriage equality after a prayer breakfast at Parliament House. full story

AUSTRALIA: Malcolm Turnbull and Christopher Pyne have rallied behind backbencher Warren Entsch as he introduced to parliament a cross-party bill to allow same-sex marriage. full story

AUSTRALIA: An opera singer was branded a “faggot” for wearing a rainbow tie to sing the Australian national anthem. full story

Kanen Breen

ITALY: Sir Elton John has spoken out against the mayor of Venice – after he banned ‘gay’ children’s books from primary schools. full story

UNITED KINGDOM: Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown has urged Britain to take a leading role in Europe to help tackle prejudice and discrimination. full story

UNITED KINGDOM: A new video features London women talking about anti-bisexual hate. full story

USA: Donald Trump says employers shouldn’t be able to say ‘You’re fired!’ just because a worker is gay, but it’s unclear if he’s done much homework on the subject. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: Focus on the Family is planning an anti-gay rally Saturday at the state Capitol to support renegade clerk Kim Davis. full story

USA, PUERTO RICO: Over 60 couples from around the region gathered in Puerto Rico’s capital Sunday to exchange vows at a same-sex marriage ceremony while a crowd of supporters snapped photos and cheered. full story

USA, PUERTO RICO: The ceremony was criticized by the Roman Catholic bishop of Arecibo. Monsignor Daniel Fernandez Torres says same-sex marriages are “contrary to natural law.” full story

USA, SOUTH CAROLINA: While most Christian churches across the United States are strongly opposed to homosexuality and same-sex marriage, the First Baptist Church of Greenville in South Carolina has taken a totally different route: It has decided to allow not just gay unions, but also the ordination of gay and transgender ministers. full story

USA, TEXAS: An anti-gay Catholic group held a roadside rally against marriage equality. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 16th

Written by scott on August 16th, 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: Aydian Dowling, the trans bodybuilder and model who earlier this year rocketed to the top of the leaderboard for Men’s Health‘s “Ultimate Guy Search,” is now a top 5 cover finalist for the magazine’s November issue. full story


POP CULTURE: Fashion maestros Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, who once called in vitro fertilization babies “chemical offspring” from a “rented uterus,” have both finally apologized for their anti-gay adoption and IVF statements they gave earlier this year. full story

POP CULTURE: Rugby star Keegan Hirst has made history as the first Rugby League player to come out as gay. full story

Keegan Hirst

POP CULTURE: Baseball player David Denson has come out as gay – becoming the first out active player in the sport. full story

AUSTRALIA: Attorney General George Brandis wants the marriage equality debate to be resolved as soon as possible through a simple plebiscite question requiring people to give a “yes” or “no” answer. full story

AUSTRALIA: Opposition Labor leader Bill Shorten attended the Melbourne marriage equality rally and did not mince his words – accusing the PM of “betraying the trust of Australians” and telling him to “get a life”. full story

AUSTRALIA: Tony Abbott won’t say whether he supports a plebiscite or a referendum on same-sex marriage but he believes a national vote should be kept separate from next year’s federal election. full story

SWITZERLAND: In a three-page letter sent to 800 of his colleagues, including priests and employees, on Wednesday night, Bishop Huonder apologized “to everyone who felt injured by my speech, in particular those of homosexual persuasion”, in which he saud that Catholic Doctrine supported the execution of gays. full story

UKRAINE: A group of masked men Saturday tossed several smoke bombs into a meeting hall in Odessa, Ukraine, where LGBT activists were about to hold a forum on the state of the movement. full story

UNITED KINGDOM: Among the population as a whole, 72% of adults say they are 0 on the Kinsey scale (exclusively heterosexual) – with just 23% differing. However, among 18-24 year olds, only 46% call themselves exclusively straight. full story

UK Poll

USA, FLORIDA: After losing its yearslong defense of Florida’s same-sex marriage ban, the state is arguing it shouldn’t have to pay the full cost of its crusade. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: Republican gubernatorial nominee Matt Bevin said Friday that elected officials have freedom of religion protections even when doing their jobs and that Gov. Steve Beshear should issue an executive order “to clarify that” and relieve county clerks of the responsibility of issuing marriage licenses. full story

USA: Six same sex couples participated in a “mass wedding” in Akron, sending the collective message that loves wins. full story


Featured Gay Friendly Wedding Vendor: Colleen Good Ceremonies, Cincinnati, Ohio

Written by scott on August 15th, 2015

Colleen Good Ceremonies

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.

Your wedding is a vivid reflection of you! Every decision you make is a brush stroke on the work of art that will be your wedding day. The ceremony is the heart and soul of your wedding and no decision is more important than who you choose to be your CincinnatiCelebrant. I would be honored to work with you to create that profound and transforming ceremony.

See the Colleen Good Ceremonies Expanded Listing on Purple Unions Here

Gay Friendly Wedding Vendors


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 15th

Written by scott on August 15th, 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: Liberal news outlet Huffington Post has defended its Arabic edition – claiming that openly homophobic columns “represent” people’s views. full story

POP CULTURE: Michael Sam, the first out gay player to be drafted into the NFL, announced Friday he is leaving football. full story

POP CULTURE: What would you do if you saw a pregnant woman harassed for giving her baby to a same-sex couple? ABC’s What Would You Do? set up an elaborate scenario to find out. full story

POP CULTURE: Matt Baume looks at the history of LGBT characters in sitcoms. full story

POP CULTURE: Zeroing in on the perceived whitewashing and ciswashing of the historic gay rights event, a new parody trailer of “Stpnewall” pulls no punches and aims to group the film with director Roland Emmerich’s other “cinematic disasters” such as Independence Day and 2012. full story

POP CULTURE: Passport looks at the “gay” language, Polari. full story

AUSTRALIA: Thousands are rallying in Melbourne’s CBD in support of marriage equality, following the Coalition Government’s decision not to allow a free vote on the issue in Parliament. full story

CHINA: Gays and lesbians often choose to enter into “cooperative marriages” rather than coming out to parents. full story

IRAQ/SYRIA: A number of children helped pelt two men with stones, as the terrorist group known as Islamic State executed them for homosexuality. full story

USA: The woman who sent the breakthrough tweet to Target about their gender specific restraints has endured a string of hateful messages from conservative customers. full story

USA, ARKANSAS: The plaintiffs in a federal challenge to Arkansas’ ban on gay marriage are asking a judge to lift a stay on the court’s 2014 ruling striking down the ban. full story

USA, COLORADO: Taiwanese animators have taken on the Colorado baker case, with hilarious results. full story

Taiwanese animation colorado baker

USA, HAWAII: A father of two has filed a lawsuit claiming East Hawaii public schools have failed to protect his kids from bullying because of their dad’s sexual orientation. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: The Lexington Herald Leader has published a blistering editorial which attacks the finances and motives of the Liberty Counsel in their defense of renegade county clerk Kim Davis. full story

USA, MARYLAND: Attorney General Brian Frosh today issued a opinion which declares that just like for straight couples, adultery constitutes legal grounds for divorce for same-sex couples. full story

USA, MISSISSIPPI: Lesbian candidate attacked by vicious anti-gay robocall. full story

USA, NEW YORK: Calvin Klein’s recent ad campaign featuring a same-sex couple has been put up at one of New York’s busiest intersections. full story

Calvin Klein Ad

USA, TENNESSEE: Tennessee‘s Union University has renounced its membership in the 100+ member Council of Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) because the organization hasn’t expelled two Christian colleges, both of which announced that they’ll accept married same-sex couples as members. full story

USA, TEXAS: AG Ken Paxton has until Aug. 24 to issue new guidelines for issuing birth and death certificates to same-sex couples, or he may face contempt charges again. full story


Marriage Equality Round-Up – August 14th

Written by scott on August 14th, 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: BuzzFeed has taken to the street (or, rather, what appears to be the BuzzFeed office) to poll a cross-section of folks on their opinions of the “Stonewall”trailer. full story

POP CULTURE: Sir Patrick Stewart couldn’t be more thrilled to live in a world that’s becoming a little more equal. full story

POP CULTURE: Madonna has declared that she will no longer tour in Russia due its anti-gay laws. full story

TECH: The tech world has just helped the world be a little safer for the LGBT community, with the launch of Queer Review in late July. full story

IRAQ/SYRIA: The United Nations Security Council will hold its first ever meeting on gay rights to discuss the terrorist group Islamic State’s persecution of sexual minorities. full story

SOUTH AFRICA: Soweto Pride creates a space for black lesbian women to celebrate their sexuality. full story

UK, ENGLAND: A preacher from the Church of England has been forced to choose between getting married and staying with ministry. full story

USA: Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee has strongly suggested that as president he would ‘deliver’ on a law that protects opponents of marriage equality. full story

USA, ALASKA: Anchorage Assembly member Bill Evans has introduced a local ordinance to expand protections under they city’s equal rights laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity, with broad exceptions. full story

USA, COLORADO: A suburban Denver baker who wouldn’t make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple cannot cite his religious beliefs in refusing them service because it would lead to discrimination, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled Thursday. full story

USA, FLORIDA: Three lesbian couples are fighting to have both parents’ names put on their children’s birth certificates. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: County clerk Kim Davis has turned away a same-sex couple for a marriage licence, despite being told specifically by a federal judge that she could not refuse to marry couples. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: An attorney for Kim Davis is asking for a stay of the order to issue licenses to same sex couples, saying it’s the same as ordering a nurse who has religious objections to perform an abortion or telling someone opposed to war to fire on an enemy soldier. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: Lawyers for the plaintiffs may as a judge to hold Kim Davis in contempt for refusing to follow the judge’s order. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: Towleroad.com has the video. full story

USA, KENTUCKY: A Kentucky school district denies intentionally leaving a gay basketball player’s picture w out of a school yearbook. full story

Dalton Maldonado

USA, MICHIGAN: The Detroit federal judge who overturned Michigan’s gay marriage ban will officiate the marriage ceremony of April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse later this month. full story

USA, MICHIGAN: At a meeting scheduled before the latest murder of a transgender woman, Detroit police pledged their commitment to the safety of LGBT people, and activists said #TransLivesMatter. full story

USA, MICHIGAN: Over 400 Catholics met in Detroit this week to attend a conference billed as “Welcoming Our Brothers and Sisters with Same-Sex-Attraction,” which turned into a diatribe against the LGBT community. full story

USA, MISSISSIPPI: Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant, a Republican, has come out in support of a state law banning adoption by gay and lesbian couples. full story

USA, NEW JERSEY: Gov. Chris Christie laughed over vetoing a transgender birth certificate bill. full story

USA, SOUTH CAROLINA: New laws to protect victims of domestic violence are under fire in the state, as they don’t protect unmarried same-sex couples. full story

USA, TEXAS: A vote to include protections for Keller ISD students and employees based on sexual orientation, gender identity and expression has been postponed for further consideration full story

USA, TEXAS: Anti gay groups held a meeting called “The Texas Response”, planning their next steps after the US Supreme Court legalized marriage equality nationwide. full story

The Texas Response

USA, WASHINGTON: Gender Odyssey, an international conference focused on the needs and interests of transgender and gender-nonconforming (GNC) people, will be held in Seattle, WA Aug. 19 – 23 full story

VATICAN: Half a million Catholics have signed a petition asking Pope Francis to call same-sex marriage “unnatural.” full story

VIETNAM: US Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has performed a ceremonial same-sex wedding in Vietnam – for a gay Ambassador. full story