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Marriage Equality Round-Up – November 26th #2

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

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

Gambia: Gays in Gambia are on the run, with no one to help them. Melanie Nathan reports. full story

Mexico: The first LGBT center in Tijuana will open next month. full story

UK:The Coalition for Marriage is still calling for all same-sex marriages to be voided in England and Wales. full story

USA: Three generals are calling on the armed services to “comply with DOD regulations by removing transgender identity as a defect warranting administrative separation.” full story

USA: The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has released a 44-page tome that attempts to convince churches that laws preventing businesses from discriminating against gay customers are actually part of a wider aim to “compel Christians to accept, endorse, and even promote an ideology and behavior that violates their faith.” full story

USA, Arkansas: Pulaski County Clerk Larry Crane says he’s ready to start issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples again when he gets the go-ahead. full story

USA, Florida: Representative Holly Raschein (R- Key Largo) and Democratic Whip Senator Joseph Abruzzo (D- Boynton Beach) introduced a bill to protect LGBT citizens in employment, housing and public accommodations. full story

MovementMap

USA, Florida: A married same sex couple who was threatened with the loss of their drivers licenses for changing their names has filed a lawsuit. full story

USA, Mississippi: The state has indicated it will appeal yesterday’s marriage equality ruling. full story

USA, Utah: The state will pay the plaintiffs in the marriage equality case $95k to cover legal costs. full story

Marriage Equality Round-Up – November 26th

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

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

Australia: Now that Liberal Democrat David Leyonhjelm has filed his long-awaited marriage equality bill in the Senate, the Liberal party must decide if it will allow a conscience vote on the issue. full story

Brazil: 160 same-sex couples married in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday in what’s believed to be the largest mass gay wedding. full story

China: The courts appear to be slow-walking a decision in a landmark case against conversion therapy. full story

Finland: Parliament is planning to vote on Friday on a marriage equality bill soon. full story

Gambia: The United States State Department is condemning the president of Gambia for signing a draconian anti-gay law. full story

Ireland: Thousands have been registered to vote in Ireland, ahead of the country’s planned initiative on marriage equality. full story

Korea: Singer Jason Mraz spoke up for LGBT rights during an interview in the country. full story

Lithuania: The Union of Lithuanian Psychologists says the so-called “gay propaganda” ban, purportedly meant to protect children, actually hurts them. full story

Syria: ISIS says it has executed two gay men by stoning them to death. full story

UK: Charles Moore, former editor of The Daily Telegraph, claims the rise of the UKIP, an ultraconservative party, is due in part to the passage of the marriage equality bill. full story

UK: The anti-gay group Coalition for Marriage fighting for a “conscience clause”, to allow Christian owned businesses to refuse service to LGBT people. full story

USA: Wikipedia has their almost-daily new marriage equality map out. Note: Arkansas is goldenrod because it’s day is indefinite, while Mississippi is cerulean because its stay ends in two weeks. full story

Wikipedia Marriage Equality Map

USA, Arizona: Two of the plaintiffs in the state’s marriage equality case, a lesbian couple together for 56 years, just got married. full story

USA, California: A Hollywood Chick-fil-A on Nov. 22 hosted a fundraiser for an LGBT advocacy group. full story

USA, Michigan: The Michigan Civil Rights Commission is calling on the legislature to pass a bill prohibiting discrimination against the LGBT community. full story

USA, Missouri: The ACLU has filed a lawsuit against the Ozark fire district for denying spousal benefits to same-sex couples. full story

USA, Missouri: A federal court has denied a request to lift the stay early on the marriage equality decision. The state expires on December 9th. full story

USA, Missouri: As same-sex couples marry in some parts of the state, Atty. Gen. Chris Koster has yet to appeal the ruling. He has until December 10th to do so. full story

USA, South Dakota: Attorneys for both sides of the marriage equality case have asked the federal judge to skip the trial and rule directly on the case. full story

USA, Texas: Atty. Gen. Greg Abbott is opposing a request by marriage equality plaintiffs to lift the stay while the state appeals. full story

Federal Judge Overturns Mississippi Marriage Equality Ban

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Mississippi MapJust hours after the Arkansas decision, a federal judge also overturned the marriage equality ban in Mississippi.

The Washington Blade reports:

U.S. District Judge Carlton W. Reeves issued his 72-page ruling less than two weeks after he heard oral arguments in the case the Campaign for Southern Equality last month filed on behalf of two lesbian couples seeking marriage rights in the Magnolia State. “The court concludes that Mississippi’s same-sex marriage ban deprives same-sex couples and their children of equal dignity under the law,” writes Reeves. “Gay and lesbian citizens cannot be subjected to such second-class citizenship.” Reeves, an African American who President Obama appointed to the federal bench in 2010, referenced the civil rights movement throughout his decision.

The judge also noted that discrimination against gays is not over in the state:

Reeves in his decision also noted Mississippi lawmakers earlier this year approved a measure – Senate Bill 2681 – that opponents contend allows business owners to deny services to LGBT people based on their religious beliefs. SB 2681 took effect on July 1. “Discrimination against gay and lesbian Mississippians is not ancient history,” writes Reeves.

The ruling has been stayed for two weeks, pending appeal.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Mississippi.

Federal Judge Overturns Arkansas Marriage Equality Ban

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

ArkansasA federal judge just struck down the state’s ban on marriage equality.

The Washington Blade reports:

U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker, an Obama appointee, wrote in a 45-page decision that Arkansas’ prohibition on gay nuptials, known as Amendment 83, violates the fundamental right to marriage protected by Due Process Clause and Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. “As demonstrated, a most searching examination of Separate Defendants’ proposed reasons for Arkansas’s marriage laws reveals that these laws are not narrowly tailored to achieve a compelling state interest,” Baker writes. “The bases Separate Defendants suggest for upholding Amendment 83 and the challenged statutes, primarily encouraging procreation and ensuring the best interests of children, in addition to the laws’ mismatched means, do not withstand strict scrutiny.”

Queerty flags some of the best quotes from the decision, including:

These cases underscore that the drafters of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments “knew times can blind us to certain truths and later generations can see that laws once thought necessary and proper in fact serve only to oppress. As the Constitution endures, persons in every generation can invoke its principles in their own search for greater freedom.”

The judge stayed her own decision, so there will be no same-sex weddings immediately.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arkansas.

How To Talk To Your Evangelical Uncle About Marriage Equality

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time when millions of Americans come together to celebrate cherished, time-honored traditions: gathering with those we hold most dear, scarfing down unhealthily large meals, and of course, arguing with loved ones. For instance, let’s say you are sitting at the dinner table, eating delicious stuffing and having a pleasant conversation about The Hunger Games, when suddenly your conservative Christian uncle launches into the following rant:

I’m telling you, the “homosexual agenda” is coming after religious freedom in this country. Did you hear about that Christian florist who is being sued for not selling flowers to a gay couple? Next thing you know, they’ll be forcing pastors to perform gay weddings. I mean, anyone who reads the Bible knows that you can’t be a Christian and support homosexuality.

Okay, that’s a lot. But don’t panic — we’ve got you covered. Here are a few bits of info (including some biblical arguments) you can use to respond to your evangelical uncle’s diatribe:

Claims that “religious liberty” is under attack in America are overblown, although the refrain is likely to be repeated ad nauseam by many religious conservatives over the next few years. Many “religious liberty” advocates cheered the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, for instance, where judges ruled that the craft store giant could be granted religious exemption from the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate. But despite assertions that the ruling protected all religious groups, a substantial majority of almost every major U.S. Christian group actually disagreed with Hobby Lobby’s position. What’s more, the decision arguably hurt people of faith overall, because it only privileged the religious views of people who own and operate corporations — and not the faiths of their employees.

Authored By Jack Jenkins- See the Full Story at Think Progress

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

53% Support Marriage Equality in Wyoming

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

titleWyoming has now joined the ranks of states that approve of marriage equality.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

The new poll by the University of Wyoming found 53 percent of respondents supported marriage for same-sex couples, compared to 39 percent opposed. The poll results represent a significant increase over the last 10 years in support for marriage equality. In 2004, only 24 percent of Wyoming residents supported legalizing same-sex marriage. “This represents a notable shift in public opinion,” said Jim King, a University of Wyoming professor of political science and a co-director of the survey. “Two years ago, 55 percent of Wyomingites disapproved of same-sex marriage and 40 percent approved. We’ve seen a reversal in those numbers.”

Folks, that’s a 29% increase in just 10 years, with almost half of that coming since 2012. Amazing!

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Wyoming.

Marriage Equality Round-Up – November 25th

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

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

Cameroon: Although the main accuser has backed out, police are continuing to investigate a man accused of being gay. full story

Nepal: A new poll shows that 60% of the country’s LGBT citizens have experienced discrimination or abuse. full story

UK: The soccer association in the UK has announced new guidelines for transgender players. full story

USA: The Dallas Voice has a new marriage equality map. full story

Dallas Voice Marriage Equality Map

USA: Out actor Dan Bucatinsky has joined the Human Rights Campaign’s Americans for Marriage Equality campaign. full story

USA: Michael Sam said he regrets the public way he came out, although he is happy to be out. full story

USA: The New York Times points out that bans on interracial marriage were in place in 16 states when they were struck down by the US Supreme Court, and sodomy bans were in 13 states. We’re now at just 15 states with marriage equality bans. full story

USA: Matt Baume has more details on the sorry state of NOM’s finances. full story

USA: The Washington Blade looks at Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s LGBT legacy at the Pentagon. full story

USA: 2014 election polls show a lowering of marriage equality support, but the electorate who showed up skewed more conservative and republican. full story

USA, Florida: West Palm Beach city commissioners voted to support lawsuits for marriage equality in the state. full story

USA, Kansas: Equality Kansas updates us on the marriage equality situation there – 25 counties have issued marriage licenses to same sex couples, but state agencies are not yet recognizing the marriages. full story

USA, Maryland: The state’s Medicaid Coverage Policy Advisory Committee recommended that Medicaid coverage be updated to provide transgender-inclusive health coverage for all participants in the program. full story

USA, Mississippi: HRC has just released another marriage equality ad in Mississippi. full story

USA, Michigan: Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says he backs Supreme Court review of the state’s ban on marriage equality. full story

USA, Nevada: Assembly Speaker-elect Ira Hansen (R) gave up the post after past statements calling gays child molesters and saying blacks should be grateful to whites for ending slavery came to light. full story

USA, Oregon: NOM has been turned away once again in their quest to bring down marriage equality in the state – the Ninth Circuit has denied the group’s request for an en-banc hearing. full story

USA, Texas: Lawyers for two Texas gay couples who are challenging the state’s ban on marriage equality asked a federal judge in San Antonio to lift his stay and allow weddings to begin immediately. full story

Marriage Equality Round-Up – November 24th

Monday, November 24th, 2014

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

India: Transgender students in New Delhi are now considered “disadvantaged”, and are eligible for free tuition in public schools. full story

Ireland: A member of the ruling party plans to introduce a “discriminate against gays” bill. full story

USA / Canada: A new hotline, Trans Lifeline, is being launched for transgender people, staffed by transgender people. full story

USA: Google play has just pulled a homophobic game called Ass Hunter, where the goal was to shoot naked gays as they ran at you from the bushes. full story

Ass Hunter

USA: Queerty has an update on the dad who discovered his son was gay from his search history and asked the internet for help. full story

USA:The Dish profiles evangelical Matthew Vines, a Christian who changed his mind on marriage equality. full story

USA: Gay Star News looks at the difficulty same-sex couples face when they want to divorce in non-marriage equality states. full story

USA: USA Today looks at HRC’s latest report, and points out the worst cities in the US for LGBT rights. full story

Matt Baume’s Marriage News Watch – November 24th

Monday, November 24th, 2014

Matt BaumeWe picked up three states with marriage this week — well, two, and then a third that’s still trying to make up its mind. Kansas clerks have been pretty inconsistent about granting or refusing to grant marriage licenses, and there’s no sign of when it’ll be resolved.

And there’s also some fun news this week: NOM’s finances are looking even worse than we thought. Oh well!

Authored By Matt Baume – See the Full Story at AFER

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

Marriage Equality Round-Up – November 23rd

Sunday, November 23rd, 2014

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

USA: Ten businesses to avoid if you support LGBT rights. full story

USA, Montana: Two straight college students tried to get married before the state’s ban on marriage equality was knocked down, to experience for themselves the discrimination gay couples face. full story

USA, Montana: The Ninth Circuit has set a date for Attorney General Tim Fox’s appeal of the ruling against the state’s marriage equality ban. full story

USA, Texas: Lubbock Mayor Glen Robertson says the city should not have received a zero score from HRC on LGBT rights, because the city is safe for gays, has an annual drag show, and because the LGBT community is already protected by state and federal laws in Texas (they’re not). full story