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Indiana Marriage Equality Activists to AG: Don’t Appeal Ruling

Friday, June 27th, 2014

Indiana marriage equality campaign

Indiana marriage equality activists are mounting a campaign to urge Attorney General Greg Zoeller to drop his appeal of the recent gay marriage ruling.

Joe.My.God reports:

Bilerico’s Bil Browning, an Indiana native, writes on Facebook: “The Attorney General is conducting a poll on whether the marriage decision should be appealed. The number is 317-232-6201, choose 1 for English and then 5 to speak to an operator. Then you can just tell the operator you’re calling about voting ‘no’ for the appeal, and they will mark you down.”

You can also sign the petition.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.

USA, Michigan: Marriage Equality Ballot Initiative Planned as State Submits New Brief

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

MichiganThe campaign to put marriage equality on the ballot in 2016 will kick off today.

The Detroit News reports:

Community activists, religious leaders and other supporters of same-sex marriage in Michigan are expected to kick off a campaign Thursday for a 2016 ballot initiative to legalize gay marriage in the state. The initiative will be called Michigan for Marriage, organizers said. In Metro Detroit, organizers will kick off their effort at noon at the Oakland County Board of Commissioners’ Auditorium, located at 1200 N. Telegraph in Pontiac. Petition drives will also be launched in Lansing and Grand Rapids.

Meanwhile, Attorney General Bill Schuette filed a new brief with the 6th Circuit supporting the ban, but one thing was notably absent.

Joe.My.God reports:

Yesterday Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette filed a brief with the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in defense of that state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Notably missing from Shuette’s brief is any mention of debunked social researcher Mark Regnerus, who was brutally slapped down by the judge who ultimately overturned the ban.

In another interesting twist, he also points to the US Supreme Court’s upholding of the state’s affirmative action ban last month:

Mlive reports:

“The district court’s decision, to use (U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony) Kennedy’s recent words, demeans democracy,” the state asserted, referring to the plurality opinion in the case that Schuette argued in defense of the affirmative action ban. “It denies each of those voters the dignity of a meaningful vote, labels each with the stigma of irrationality, and treats Michigan’s electorate as incapable of deciding this profound and sensitive issue.”

Kennedy wrote in his opinion on Schuette vs. Coalition to defend Affirmative Action: “It is demeaning to the democratic process to presume that the voters are not capable of deciding an issue of this sensitivity on decent and rational grounds… Freedom embraces the right, indeed the duty, to engage in a rational, civic discourse in order to determine how best to form a consensus to shape the destiny of the Nation and its people. These First Amendment dynamics would be disserved if this Court were to say that the question here at issue is beyond the capacity of the voters to debate and then to determine.”

I haven’t seen this particular argument before, at least not with this basis… it will be interesting to see if it is taken seriously by the 6th Circuit.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Michigan.

USA: HRC Launches Campaign in the Deep South

Sunday, April 27th, 2014

New Human Rights Campaign President Ready to Wade Into More Marriage Equality FightsThe Human Rights Campaign is taking its gay rights and marriage equality fight to the Deep South.

The Advocate reports:

The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s most prominent LGBT rights organization, is launching an $8.5 million intiative to enhance its presence in states that offer no protections for its LGBT citizens. Called Project One America, the initiative will establish offices in the Deep South states of Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas (coincidentally or not, HRC president Chad Griffin hails from Arkansas). The impetus is to address the serious inequalities in the South, where there is not only a lack of marriage equality, but also no basic protections in housing and employment for LGBTs.

Seems to me Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas could use a little extra LGBT love… 🙂

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

USA, Mississippi: Businesses Post “We Don’t Discriminate” Signs

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

We Don't Discriminate signIn the wake of an anti-gay Right to Discriminate law, some businesses are posting anti discrimination signs. reports:

A new campaign launched by a group of entrepreneurs is taking off in Mississippi, the Clarion Ledger reports:

If You’re Buying, We’re Selling started in the commercial district of Jackson’s Fondren neighborhood last week, and has since spread statewide. The campaign is built around opposition to Senate Bill 2681, which proponents claim would only raise the burden government has to meet before denying someone’s right to practice their religious beliefs… Eddie Outlaw, who owns William Wallace Salon and Fondren Barber Shop, was part of the creative team behind If You’re Buying, with Mitchell Moore, who owns Campbell’s Bakery in Fondren.

“A lot of us were trying to counter the negative stuff from outside Mississippi,” Outlaw said, referring to the national coverage 2681 got while it circulated the Capitol. “We wanted to let people know – not just the LGBT community but the progressive community as a whole – that this doesn’t represent everybody here.”

It’s good to see businesses in the state standing up against officially sanctioned discrimination.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Mississippi.

Australia: Marriage Equality Campaign to Target 50 MP’s for Votes

Friday, February 14th, 2014

Australia MapAustralian Marriage Equality today revealed the 50 Federal MPs targeted by the new nationwide “We’re Waiting” campaign. Only 25 more MPs are needed to support reform for legislation to pass the Parliament.

The ‘We’re Waiting’ campaign will put a face to the millions of Australians waiting for reform and empower local communities in targeted electorates to help reform happen.

All targeted parliamentarians will today receive a rose from people who are waiting. This includes gay couples waiting to marry; straight couples who have put their weddings on hold until their gay friends can marry; parents waiting for their sons or daughters to be treated equally by the law; and the majority of Australians waiting for reform to happen.

Australian Marriage Equality National Director, Rodney Croome, said, “Today we launch our new campaign to activate grass roots support in the 50 electorates we have identified are key to achieving marriage equality,”

“We have selected 50 MPs who we believe may be persuaded to support reform, and if we can persuade just half of them, marriage equality will pass.”

“Tens of thousands same-sex couples are waiting to get married, 65% of Australian are waiting for the laws to change, and now even straight couples are waiting to get married till their gay friends can.

“Our campaign, ‘We’re Waiting’, will put a face to the millions of Australians waiting for reform in key electorates, and will empower these communities to do something about it.”

“This starts from today with marriage equality supporters, gay and straight, visiting their MPs office for the first time to deliver roses, start the conversation about marriage equality, and ask them the question “what are you waiting for?”

“From the WA seat of Cowan to the Queensland seat of McPherson, over the coming weeks and months we will support these local communities to build the profile of the issue in key electorates and open the hearts and minds of undecided MPs.”

The campaign has the support of Wallaby David Pocock, who is waiting to marry his partner Emma until the laws change. Mr Pocock said, “It comes down to equal love. I don’t think it’s the government’s role to tell people that their love is right or wrong.”

“I couldn’t keep quiet while people I loved dearly were being penalised for their sexuality – something they can do nothing about”.

He added, “Oh, and also the sky didn’t fall during the few days of marriage equality in Canberra – which no doubt many anti equality groups predicted”.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Australia.

USA, Pennsylvania: New Marriage Equality Campaign Kicked Off in State

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

Pennsylvania mapFreedom to Marry and the ACLU are teaming up for a new marriage equality campaign in Pennsylvania.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

News conferences trumpeting the Why Marriage Matters Pennsylvania campaign, sponsored by the national advocacy group Freedom to Marry and the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, were held in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. “Pennsylvania’s ban on marriages for same-sex couples is harmful and indefensible. We look forward to continuing our efforts to make sure that every Pennsylvanian will be free to marry the person he or she loves,” said Reggie Shuford, executive director of the state ACLU.

The group will concentrate on changing hearts and minds with “neighbor to neighbor” conversations across the state. The campaign starts against the backdrop of six marriage equality lawsuits that are proceeding through the state courts.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Pennsylvania.

Ecuador: Marriage Equality Campaign Launched

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Ecuador - Google Maps

from Google Maps

An LGBT rights group in Ecuador is launching a campaign for marriage equality.

Dot429 reports:

Red LGBTI Ecuador, a group dedicated to promoting the rights of lesbian, gay, transgender, and intersex Ecuadorians, has launched their “Equal Marriage For All” campaign, in an effort to secure the right of same-sex couples to acquire a marriage license in that state. The campaign started on August 5, 2013, when political activist Pamela Troyo and partner Gabriela Correa presented the paperwork necessary to obtain a marriage license in the city of Quito, Ecuador. Their request was denied by city officials, but sparked the beginning of a national campaign that sent another gay couple to apply for a marriage license in Ecuador, this time in the city of Guayaquil.

If successful, Ecuador would join Uruguay, Argentina, and parts of Brazil with marriage equality in South America.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

USA, California: Transgender Law Opponents Have New Rallying Cry

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

Transgender FlagApparently, physical facilities are more important than transgender students, as opponents of a new law to protect those students are starting to call for “Saving Our Locker Rooms”.

Think Progress reports:

Sex-segregated personal facilities exist because there are some very particular ways in which men and women remain different, and always will be different. We need not go into detail to observe that men and women have different experiences in restrooms, locker rooms, and other sex-segregated places because of the differences in their anatomy. Separating the sexes in these facilities allows for distinct physical accommodations proper to the needs of men and women, but more importantly it allows for camaraderie among those who share the whole life experience of manhood or womanhood—among those who are the same. Advice, help, humor—there are some things that only those of the same sex can fully understand and appreciate, and which would not only be awkward but senseless to discuss with someone of the opposite sex (other than, perhaps, a spouse). Secondarily, these personal facilities also implicate parts of the body that are particularly sexual in nature, even if nudity is not present. Personal facilities are sex-segregated in order to reduce their sexual nature. Healthy and professional non-sexual relationships between men and women depend on banishing the specter of sexuality from public facilities—even placing to one side the threat of harassment and general boorishness.

As Think Progress explains:

McGinley’s argument requires the assumption that everybody in the locker room presents as the same gender and is attracted to the same (opposite) gender, thereby erasing not only transgender people, but all LGBT people.

We won’t be made invisible anymore. And we won’t let them erase our transgender friends, family and loved ones, either.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in California.

USA, Arizona: Marriage Equality Advocates Rally in Phoenix

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

Arizona mapMarriage equality advocates in Arizona held a rally in Phoenix yesterday.

The Arizona Daly Star reports:

Hoping to create a change in attitudes, a coalition of civil-rights groups is taking the first steps today to convince Arizonans that letting gays wed would be a good thing. The education campaign being launched comes five years after 56 percent of those who went to the polls voted to amend the Arizona Constitution to define marriage in this state as strictly between one man and one woman. Supporters of rescinding the ban contend there are Arizonans who can be convinced — if not now, then by 2016 — to support repeal.

I’d love to see marriage equality in my home state – the GOP has held sway there for so long. It’s time for a little progressive action.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arizona.

USA, Ohio: Marriage Equality Push Kicks Off

Monday, September 9th, 2013

Why Marriage Matters IowaA new campaign for marriage equality just kicked off across Ohio today.

SDGLN reports:

Why Marriage Matters Ohio, a marriage equality education campaign supporting the right for any loving, committed Ohio couple to marry, launched today statewide. The launch announcement was simultaneously held in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus. The launch introduced the campaign and its founders: Equality Ohio Education Fund, Freedom to Marry, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Ohio.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) spoke at the Cleveland launch. “All Americans should able to marry the person they love, and they should be able celebrate that love in Ohio. Full rights should not vary by geographical lines. Why Marriage Matters Ohio will bring this issue of equal rights to the forefront,” Brown said.

With two rulings in favor of gay couples this last month, are things on a roll in Ohio?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Ohio.