ON US TV today (Sept. 22), the clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses to ANY couple because she didn’t believe in same sex marriage has said what hurts her most about how she has been treated since she defied the Supreme Court ruling on marriage in June – being called ‘a hypocrite’.
All because she believes in her Christian duty to break the oath she took as a US Government official to uphold the law, in a country whose constitution explicitly forbids the primacy of any religion. The First Amendment clearly states that the US government cannot make any law ‘respecting an establishment of religion.’ In the words of the Supreme Court, this generally means that the government can’t “pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion over another,” or otherwise become entangled in religious affairs.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was one of 26 million people who used the rainbow filter on his profile picture. SOURCE: Facebook
IT’S LATE – my phone rings. It’s someone I haven’t heard from in a while. I answer.
His greeting is warm, but it sounds like he’s been drinking.
He chats about Facebook – he says he doesn’t use it much but he’s logged in and noticed the rainbow filter on my profile picture, the only one among his list of friends on the site.
He says he is concerned because he has just read an article claiming that sex offenders have been ordered to use rainbow profile pictures on social media so others can easily identify them as potential predators. Click to continue »
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!
MAP: The last US marriage equality map. full story
MAP: Well, not quite – we also have this beautiful, simple time lapse map. full story
FULL TEXT: Read the full text of yesterday’s US Supreme Court Ruling. full story
GUIDE: Six LGBT advocacy organizations launched a joint website http://MarriageEqualityFacts.org to provide answers to same-sex couples and their families as they navigate accessing the rights, benefits, and protections that marriage affords. full story
CARTOONS: Joe.My.God rounds up some of the best political cartoons full story
CORPORATIONS: Joe also wraps up some of the best corporate responses. full story
CELEBRITIES: The Huffington Post rounds up some of the celebrity reactions. full story
FASHION: The Observer rounds up the response from the fashion world. full story
ICE CREAM: Ben & Jerry’s is renaming one of its ice cream flavors, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, to “I Dough, I Dough” at participating stores. full story
MEMES: Queerty rounds up some of the best marriage equality memes of the day. full story
FACEBOOK: You can now rainbow your profile pic on the social media giant. full story
IN THE STATES:
NATIONWIDE: The Advocate gathers some of the places that went rainbow yesterday to celebrate marriage equality. full story
ALABAMA: The state’s Chief Justice has vowed to block US Supreme Court’s ‘illegitimate’ marriage equality ruling. full story
ALABAMA: All couples in Mobile were allowed to pick up marriage licenses once again on Friday when the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage. full story
ARKANSAS: Marriage equality has returned to the state as the first new same sex marriage license was issued. full story
ARKANSAS: Gov. Asa Hutchinson said the state will obey the ruling. full story
COLORADO: Hundreds gathered at the State Capitol to celebrate the Supreme Court decision, full story
GEORGIA: Same sex couples married in a mass ceremony in Fulton County. full story
INDIANA: Indiana celebrates the ruling. full story
LOUISIANA: Arch-conservative Governor Bobby Jindal and GOP presidential candidate is doing what he can to stop same-sex weddings in his state. full story
Last year, we reported that nationwide approval for same-sex marriage had reached an all-time high according to Gallup, which then found that 55% of Americans support same-sex marriage. Those numbers have soared even higher in the 12 months since, now reaching 60% approval on the eve of the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage. As Gallup reports, support for same-sex marriage is also at an all-time high among both major political parties:
Though same-sex marriage continues to be politically divisive, support for its legal status has reached new highs among Americans of all political stripes — with Democrats at 76% support, independents at 64% and Republicans at 37%. […]
The party divide between Democrats and Republicans may hinge largely on the age groups that compose each party. Gallup has found that younger Americans are significantly more likely to lean Democratic, while older Americans skew Republican. And while majorities of each age group under 65 support marriage equality in 2015, those aged 65 and older are still more likely to oppose it. This is a new phenomenon for the 50- to 64-year-old group. Last year, just 48% of these middle-aged Americans supported legally recognizing gay marriage. But in 2015, this figure has climbed to a majority of 54%.
After three decades of debate over its stance on homosexuality, members of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted on Tuesday to change the definition of marriage in the church’s constitution to include same-sex marriage.
The final approval by a majority of the church’s 171 regional bodies, known as presbyteries, enshrines a change recommended last year by the church’s General Assembly. The vote amends the church’s constitution to broaden marriage from being between “a man and a woman” to “two people, traditionally a man and a woman.”
The Presbytery of the Palisades, meeting in Fair Lawn, N.J., put the ratification count over the top on Tuesday on a voice vote. With many presbyteries still left to vote, the tally late Tuesday stood at 87 presbyteries in favor, 41 against and one tied.
Are people born gay or lesbian, are do they become that way due to their upbringing or environment? Though opinions are changing, it turns that America is still deeply divided on this “nature vs. nurture” question. Gallup polls taken over nearly four decades show a sharp rise in the view that people are born gay or lesbian, from about 12 percent in 1977 to 42 percent in 2014. The percentage of people saying that homosexuality is due to a person’s upbringing or environment has fallen, from more than 50 percent in the late 1970s to less than 40 percent today.
Unfortunately, the poll shows a bit of a drop-off since last year.
Support for gay marriage has risen to an all-time high in the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, reinforcing it as one of the fastest-moving changes in social attitudes of this generation. The new survey found that 59% of Americans support allowing same-sex marriage, nearly double the 30% support reported in 2004. Fred Yang, the Democratic pollster who conducted the survey with Republican Bill McInturff said public opinion about gay marriage is changing at a much more rapid rate than did the nation’s attitudes toward interracial marriage, which now is supported by 87% of Americans.
More than a third of conservatives now support it, and 3/4ths of Democrats do.
A CNN/ORC poll released Thursday showed 63 percent of Americans support gay couples’ constitutional right to marry. According to the poll of 1,027 adults conducted February 12-15, 63 percent of Americans believe that gay couples have “a constitutional right to get married and have their marriage recognized by law as valid,” while 36 percent remain opposed. Seventy-two percent of adults under age 34 favor marriage equality. A large majority (75%) of Democrats see marriage for gays as a constitutional right, while 42 percent of Republicans agree.
Only 36% are now opposed – remarkable progress in just a few years.
With the U.S. Supreme Court poised to rule this spring on whether same-sex couples nationwide should have the right to marry, a gay rights organization on Friday released a new survey showing support for gay marriage at 60 percent among likely voters in the 2016 election. The Human Rights Campaign — a Washington, D.C.-based tax-exempt nonprofit that works to “achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans” — says its survey shows conservatives who claim the country will balk at court-imposed marriage rights are out of step with public opinion. The poll was conducted late last month by the Democratic polling firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research. According to the survey, 60 percent of likely voters say they favor “allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry legally,” while 37 percent oppose allowing gays to marry.
While the poll measures likely voters vs. people in general, it’s still a great number to see.
Last time, we spoke about the importance of framing the case through the Questions Presented. I argued that despite some concern, the two questions posed in the Supreme Court’s order do not indicate that the justices are looking for a way out. They are ready to rule. Before we discuss the substance on which the justices will rule, let’s review the four cases that will decide the marriage equality question.
This matters because not all cases are fungible. Some come with better facts, others come with messy complications; some come with sympathetic plaintiffs, others have unfortunate optics. Especially when it comes to appellate review, the record on appeal can even tilt the outcome of the case. Plus, the cases are fun to talk about at nerdy cocktail parties.
Bourke v. Beshear is the Kentucky case and it was one of the earlier (though not the earliest) post-Windsor pro-equality decisions from a federal district court. It is about both the right to have a valid out-of-state marriage recognized in a home state and Kentucky’s own in-state ban. The judge, the Honorable John G. Heyburn, relied heavily on Windsor and found that Kentucky’s marriage laws discriminated against gay persons in violation of the Equal Protection Clause as applied to the states. Using rational basis review — the lowest form of scrutiny that only requires a rational connection between a law and a legitimate government objective — the court said there was no rational reason to treat gays this way. He struck down the anti-recognition law.