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Today We March

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

gay wedding

Twenty three years ago, I walked into the Pacific Center, an LGBT center in Berkeley, California, for a gay men’s night, having no idea that I would meet the love of my life, my husband Mark.

That I can call him my husband, legally, under the laws of both the Federal Government and all fifty states, would have seemed an impossibility to me back then.

The first gay wedding I ever attended was in the late 80’s, when a high school friend of mine “married” his partner in Southern California. I put the word “married” in quotes because, back then, it was such an impossible concept – this idea that two men could marry – and it was at once an act of defiance and an act of love.

The ceremony, such as it was, involved five of us – the two grooms and three friends. We went to the Huntington Museum – a gorgeous place in Arcadia, California – and together we entered the bamboo garden. There, amidst the tall stands of bamboo, with the three of us huddled protectively around the couple so no one else could see, they exchanged hurried vows and rings.

I was all of 22 years old.

What a different world the young adults of today are entering into. When Mark and I met in 1992, we didn’t believe this day would come in our lifetimes. When we started our LGBT wedding directory,, the name itself implied that we were lucky to get the recognition of civil unions. I still kick myself for not also having bought LOL…

In 2008, we jumped into advocacy with both feet, starting the Gay Marriage Watch blog, which later became Marriage Equality Watch. In that year, anti gay laws were still gaining ground, and our bright, beautiful victory in California at the state Supreme Court was quickly eclipsed by the lies and hatred of Prop 8. Even then, just seven years ago, we didn’t know if we would get here.

The fall of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell put the foot on the accelerator, as the country saw out and proud military veterans for the first time, and all that activist energy flowed from the military into marriage equality and other LGBT movements.

The US Supreme Court rulings in 2014 only threw more fuel on the fire. I had hoped for marriage equality nationwide by 2020. I didn’t dare dream it would arrive so soon.

Mark and I have married twice – once in 2004 in San Francisco, only to see it snatched away from us, and again in 2008, also in The City. Many other same sex couples have now done the same around the country and around the world.

There are still other battles to be fought. In many states in the US, you can be fired or kicked out of your home for being LGBT. Transgender rights deserve much more of our attention. And there are many places around the world where it’s still a criminal act to be gay.

But those are fights to start tomorrow.

Today Mark and I will celebrate what has come before, and where we are now.

Today, in San Francisco, we march.

USA, Texas: Group Marches for Marriage Equality

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Corpus Christie RallyAn LGBT rights group marched for marriage equality in Corpus Christie, Texas.

KIII reports:

Despite mother nature, dozens of people took over the Bayfront in a march that’s now become somewhat of a tradition. The group is marching for equal gay marriage rights. We spoke with one couple in particular, which says they know they have a long way to go, but this rally is a great start.

We really have pushed the movement into the reddest of states.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Texas.

UK, England/Wales: Same-Sex Couples Can Marry Starting March 29th

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

LondonWe finally have a date for the first same-sex weddings in England and Wales, and it’s three months earlier than we thought.

Gay Star News reports:

The first same sex weddings in England and Wales will be able to take place from Saturday 29 March 2014, Women and Equalities Minister Maria Miller announced today (10 December). Following the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013 successfully completing its journey through Parliament in July 2013, the government has been working to ensure that all the arrangements are in place to enable same sex couples to marry as soon as possible. As a result of this work, the first weddings in England and Wales will now be able to happen several months earlier than the government anticipated.

That’s great news for same-sex couples in England and Wales, who had to endure a longer waiting period than most places that have passed marriage equality. Will Scotland get its act together to let couples marry at the same time?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in the United Kingdom.

India: Hundreds March Against LGBT Discrimination

Sunday, November 24th, 2013

IndiaAnother country, another LGBT rights march – this one in New Delhi, India.

Pink News reports:

Hundreds of gay rights activists marched through the streets of New Delhi recently in a demand to end LGBT stigmatisation and discrimination in India. Associated Press reports there was a carnival-like atmosphere on Sunday, as activists sang songs and carried rainbow flags and balloons while they marched the beat of traditional Indian drums. The demonstration comes four years after a colonial-era law criminalising same-sex sexual relationships was overturned.

Acceptance of LGBT people and their relationships is coming slowly in India. The country, like most of Asia, still has no official recognition of same sex relationships.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

USA, Illinois: New Poll Shows Majority Support for Marriage Equality on Eve of March

Monday, October 21st, 2013

Marriage equality news just keeps rolling in. We have a new poll out of Illinois which shows strong support for the pending marriage equality bill there.

Chicago Pride reports:

A new statewide poll released Monday–just one day before the March on Springfield for Marriage Equality–shows a dramatic majority of registered likely voters support for the freedom to marry in Illinois. titleA strong majority of 52 percent of Illinois voters support legalizing marriage for gay and lesbian couples, and the figure grew to 54 percent support when pollsters shared information about the summer’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned federal restrictions against recognizing same-sex marriages.

The new poll comes out days before the planned veto session, and on the eve of a planned rally in Springfield for marriage equality.

The Daily Illini reports:

Organizations and allies in support of Illinois marriage equality have scheduled a march in Springfield for Oct. 22 in order to coincide with the Illinois State Legislature’s opening day of the fall veto session. The March in Springfield for Marriage Equality is meant to be a push for marriage equality in the state of Illinois. Participants are hoping for the same-sex marriage bill, SB 10, to be passed by the House. “For me, it’s both about showing support for marriage equality and a chance for the movement and its allies to come together for public support,” said Tracy Baim, co-chair and co-founder of the event. “It’s really about coming together to reinspire and re-energize people for the work ahead.”

Will the victory in New Jersey today light a fire under Illinois lawmakers?

USA, Illinois: March on Springfield Rally Planned for 10/22

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

Illinois mapA big rally is planned for marriage equality in Springfield, Illinois in nine days.

Broadway World reports:

Governor Pat Quinn will open the March on Springfield for Marriage Equality on October 22 with a welcome. He will be followed by speakers that represent the breadth and depth of the equal marriage coalition in Illinois. All speakers will deliver a common message to Illinois legislators: A majority of Illinoisans support the freedom to marry and the time for marriage equality in Illinois is now. LGBT organizations, families and faith leaders will be joined at the podium by national and regional coalition partners for the 90 minute rally.

If you’re in Illinois, go! We need the numbers to put some pressure on the legislature to pass the bill during the veto session.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Illinois =.

Paraguay: Four Hundred March for LGBT Rights

Monday, October 7th, 2013

Paraguay - Google Maps

from Google Maps

Gay rights advocates in Paraguay marched over the weekend to bring attention to their cause.

On Top Magazine reports:

Roughly 400 gay people joined a public march in downtown Asuncion, Paraguay on Saturday to demand greater rights. Activists also want the government to investigate the murders of transgender people. Under the slogan of “holiday, in memory and protest,” the demonstrators marched through the city to the Pantheon of Heroes, Asuncion’s memorial to the country’s fallen soldiers, where they held a festival.

It’s an annual event – this was the 10th annual march.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

Bulgaria: Hundreds March for Gay Rights

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

Sofia, Bulgaria - Apple Maps

from Apple Maps

Hundreds of gay rights activists took to the streets in Sofia, Bulgaria to rally for LGBT rights.

Pink News reports:

The demonstrators walked peacefully through the capital city, and were protected by hundreds of police officers following calls from extremist groups to stop the event. Revellers displayed colourful banners which called for love, equality and sexual diversity. Slogans against Russian anti-gay laws introduced earlier this year were chanted, and To Russia With Love signs were carried by marchers.

Bulgaria’s a difficult place to be gay – we salute those brave souls who are coming out publicly to try to change that.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

Ireland: Thousands March for Marriage Equality in Dublin

Monday, August 19th, 2013

irelandGay-rights activists held a march for marriage equality in Dublin. The Irish Times reports:

Up to 4,000 people marched in Dublin today for the right to marry. The 5th annual march for marriage equality was organised by the advocacy organisation LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) Noise. Max Krzyzanowski of LGBT Noise called on the Government to set a date for a referendum on same sex marriage. Though civil partnership legislation was enacted two years ago, legislation to allow for full marriage rights for same-sex couples would require a referendum.

A huge majority supports marriage equality in the country, but the government has yet to take action on it. Maybe with the recent passage of the marriage equality bill United Kingdom, this will change.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

Haiti: Rally Planned Against Homosexuality

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Haiti - Apple Maps

from Apple Maps

A group of anti-gay pastors plans a march against marriage equality tomorrow. O Blog Dee O Blog Da reports:

The question is – Who is trying to give these laws to the Haitian LGBT community? Since the answer is “no one”, once again religious leaders are using advances in LGBT rights in Western countries to further persecute the LGBT community at home. The march by these religious groups will only further increase intolerance and violence pushing more people into hiding. It will increase discrimination. It will further impact health care opportunities and HIV/AIDS prevention for those who often need it most.

Homosexuality is legal in Haiti, but there is currently no effort to bring marriage equality to the island.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.