I’m guessing the answer is no – and I’m guessing that most of you probably don’t feel the need for a particular time to be proud of who you are and who you love, because our families and society are usually affirming and supportive, reinforcing heterosexuality without a second thought all the time. In choosing this headline I have assumed, as our society does all the time, that everyone is (or should be) heterosexual.
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Gay Star News reports:
A new government poll has revealed the average British person knows more gay men than lesbian women. Statistics show the average British person knows 5.5 gay men and 3.1 lesbian women. The poll only focused on these two aspects of the LGBTI community. The information was gathered by government body YouGov in a survey aiming to find a reasonable number for how many gays and lesbians there are in the UK. No official data exists as to how many gays and lesbians there are in the UK, but some groups, such as LGBTI equality group Stonewall, say a figure of six per cent of the population being LGBTI is a sensible estimation.
Next poll – how many gays are between you and Kevin Bacon?
Pink News reports:
Today it has emerged that the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, Richard Inwood, has removed Pemberton’s Permission to Officiate (PTO), revoking his permission to perform services in the diocese. Pemberton holds his licence in the Diocese of Lincoln – which has not yet revoked it – and he is still employed by the NHS as a chaplain. Though he declined to comment on the matter, Pemberton has since confirmed that reports are “basically accurate”.
So will we hear any outrage from the far right groups who are outraged when someone who opposes marriage equality quits his job, now that someone has been actually fired just for getting legally married? Not holding my breath.
Pink News reports:
It is the third time the assembly has voted down a same-sex marriage motion in 18 months, with stiff opposition from DUP and some UUP members. The motion had been tabled by six MLAs, from the Alliance, Sinn Fein and Green parties, but its passage was deemed unlikely after DUP tabled a petition of concern, hindering cross-party efforts to pass it. MLAs from the Social Democratic, NI21 and Labour parties also backed the motion, while the sole UKIP and Traditional Unionist Voice MLAs voted against. Two Alliance MLAs, Judith Cochrane and Trevor Lunn,voted against the motion despite their party supporting it.
This despite a poll last year showing 57% support marriage equality in the country.
Gay Wedding Photography / Videography in Birmingham, England. Quite simply, we love same sex weddings…we also love to make films. Put those together and you get something truly special. We don’t shoot your typical same sex wedding videos… we creatively and stylistically produce a cinematic tale of your special day, showing the day unwrap with a personal “behind the scenes” feel.
THE CLOCKS WENT FORWARD in the UK last weekend, in more ways than one. The official start of British Summer Time with daylight saving coincided with the legalisation of same-sex marriages in England and Wales. So began an extraordinary week for LGBT equality.
On Saturday March 29th, lesbian and gay couples around the country vied to be the first to be legally married, with several timing their services as close to midnight as possible:
An estimated 70 couples across England and Wales took advantage of the change in law on Saturday, and the media was filled with mostly positive portrayals of this landmark for equality.
A BBC survey revealed that 80% of people would attend a gay wedding if invited (though their headline focussed on the negative responses:
Twitter feeds filled with supportive messages from celebrities. Actor and comedian Les Dennis tweeted:
If you’re Gay and getting married today it’s appropriate that the clocks go forward. We are no longer in the Dark Ages. Congratulations.
— Les Dennis (@LesDennis) March 29, 2014
Sadly it was not all good news.
Queerty has one of the first weddings on video.
One of the UK’s first gay married couples, Sinclair Treadway, 20, and Sean Adl-Tabatabai, 31, have released a video of their marriage ceremony. The wedding took place at 00:01 today (GMT local time) at Camden Town Hall, North London. Queerty were the first to break the news with a speech from openly gay Mayor of Camden, Jonathan Simpson.
Gay Star News reports:
Demonstrations are taking place this evening by LGBT campaigners in Northern Ireland who are highlighting how it’s the last remaining part of the UK where equal marriage is yet to be legalised. The Equal Marriage Northern Ireland Campaign is holding two demonstrations at Belfast City Hall and the Guidlhall Square in Foyle from 5-6pm…
“In the South of Ireland, a referendum is expected in the early part of 2015, and early opinion polls suggest a significant majority in favour. Twice before, an equal marriage motion has been debated in the Northern Ireland Assembly, losing by a small margin both times. We are demonstrating today, to remind our political leaders and representatives that we do not want to be left behind in the march toward full legislative equality for LGB&/T people and their families.” Northern Ireland is the only remaining UK nation where equal marriage has not been legalised.
Northern Ireland’s government is becoming more and more isolated as all the other governments around it move to pass marriage equality. How long can they hold out?
As we just reported, Peter McGraith and David Cabreza of Islington were among the first same-sex couples (and quite possibly the first) to get married once marriage equality was legalized in England and Wales after midnight. When the happy couple emerged from Islington Town Hall they were greeted with a warm and raucous crowd wishing them well.
Another wedding took place in North London.
The U.K.’s first gay marriage has just taken place in Camden, North London. This is an historic moment for the gay community of the UK and for gay people around the world. The wedding ceremony of Sinclair Treadway, 20, and Sean Adl-Tabatabai (pictured), 32, took place at Camden Town Hall at the stroke of midnight, when the U.K.’s new same-sex marriage laws came into force.
And another in Brigton.
The Raw Story reports:
In Brighton on England’s south coast, Neil Allard and Andrew Wale exchanged vows and rings in the opulent splendour of the Royal Pavilion in front of about 100 guests. Wearing velvet-collared three-piece suits with white flowers in their buttonholes, the smiling couple of seven years hugged and kissed after they became “husband and husband”. They were among several couples bidding to be first to take advantage of last year’s Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act by holding midnight wedding ceremonies.
Prime Minister David Cameron put out a statement commemorating the night:
The introduction of same-sex civil marriage says something about the sort of country we are. It says we are a country that will continue to honour its proud traditions of respect, tolerance and equal worth. It also sends a powerful message to young people growing up who are uncertain about their sexuality. It clearly says ‘you are equal’ whether straight or gay. That is so important in trying to create an environment where people are no longer bullied because of their sexuality – and where they can realise their potential, whether as a great mathematician like Alan Turing, a star of stage and screen like Sir Ian McKellen or a wonderful journalist and presenter like Clare Balding.
Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones also put out a statement:
We want Wales to be a country built on fairness and equality. This means zero-tolerance of discrimination, valuing diversity and helping people live the lives they wish. Same sex marriage brings us closer to achieving this. It is only right that gay couples have the opportunity for their relationship to be formally recognised in the same way that straight couples can.
Over ay Buzzfeed, they note five ways the UK still doesn’t have full marriage equality:
1. Civil partnerships still cannot be converted to marriages: Same-sex couples who are already in a civil partnership will not be able to convert their relationship to marriage until later in 2014, while the government works out the official procedure for switching status.
Since civil partnerships can only be dissolved if both parties prove to the court that a relationship has broken down there is no way for couples to swiftly end their partnership and then remarry.
While there are still battles to be fought (Northern Ireland, we’re looking at you), it’s a day to celebrate.
Following the passing of landmark legislation allowing same-sex marriage in England and Wales, the first gay weddings in the UK will take place this weekend on Saturday, March 29th. The Deputy Prime Minister of the UK, Nick Clegg (pictured), has always been a strong supporter of marriage equality and gay rights in the UK. He said today (25th March) that:
“I strongly want to join my Right Honourable Friend in recognizing the joy of many same-sex couples who will finally be able to marry under British law this weekend. It’s a great, great moment, it’s a day which they will always remember and I hope it’s a day the nation will never forget. I think it’s a great, great step forward for us all.”
We’re thrilled for our brothers and sisters across the pond!