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UK, England: Marriage Equality Bill Moves to Report Stage

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

LondonThe debate on the UK’s marriage equality bill for England and Wales moved to the Report Stage yesterday. Gay Star News reports:

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill has just completed the first day of the Report Stage, with several votes made on amendments made to wreck the bill. Among the many voted down was an amendment to allow registrars to refuse to do their job and not marry same-sex couples. It was voted down by a majority of 175.

But the most entertaining part involved George Clooney, indirectly:

Baroness Tina Stowell made the illustrious point while talking about how gay couples did not need to divorce on grounds of adultery.

She said: ‘As the law stands, if I was married to George Clooney and he was to have a sexual affair with, say, the noble Baroness, Lady Thornton, that would be adultery. ‘If I was married to George Clooney and Mr Clooney had sexual relations with the noble Lord, Lord Alli, that would not be adultery because he would not be able to do the sexual act which is very specifically defined in law. ‘Should I wish to divorce Mr Clooney on those grounds, I would do so on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour.

Another amendment, to force a public vote, will e given a second reading in November, which I think basically kills it, as the law is expected to be in effect by then. Pink News reports:

A private member’s bill for a referendum on plans to legalise same-sex marriage in England and Wales will be subjected to a second reading debate by MPs on 29 November 2013. It has been tabled by Conservative MP and equal marriage critic Peter Bone, and was unveiled last month as part of an “alternative Queen’s Speech” by backbench Tories.

Another amendment was also defeated, one that would have “protected” teachers from “endorsing” marriage equality. Pink News reports:

An amendment to the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill which would have “protected” teachers from being forced to “endorse” equal marriage, has been defeated in a vote in the House of Lords. Amendment 46 was defeated in a vote at Report stage of the House of Lords by 163 to 32, as the debate around amendments went on into the night. The amendment had aimed to ensure that the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill would not “Affect the right of teachers to express their personal views about marriage in an appropriate way, or mean that any teacher will be under any obligation to endorse a particular view of marriage.”

And in related news, a new poll says that 59% of Tory activists oppose the bill. Pink News reports:

A new YouGov poll of more than 800 Conservative Party activists shows 59% totally oppose legislation to allow for same-sex marriage in England and Wales. Only 24% of those surveyed were in total support of the government’s marriage reforms. The results show that the vast majority of the 852 Conservative Party members surveyed had a negative view of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill. It also suggested that 19% – almost one in five – of Conservative members are seriously considering voting for the UK Independence Party at the next general election.

After the Report Stage, the bill gets its Third Reading, and then goes to the Queen for Royal Assent, assuming no changes have been made that require the House of Commons to approve it again. It could become law by the fall.

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

USA: Prop 8 Play Recording to be Broadcast on Radio Stations Nationwide

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

Prop 8 PlayThe star-studded West Coast performance of the gay marriage play “8” led by George Clooney and Brad Pitt will be heard again this month — on radio and online.

A recording by L.A. Theatre Works of the March 3 performance in Los Angeles will be broadcast in the coming days on 90.7 KPFK in Southern California, 89.7 WGBH in Boston, 91.5 WBEZ in Chicago, 94.9 KUOW in Seattle, 91.1 KRCB in San Francisco, 89.3 WPFW in Washington, D.C.; and over 100 other markets nationwide. June is Gay Pride Month.

The play is about the 2010 federal court fight against Proposition 8, the gay-marriage ban that California voters approved in 2008. The play by Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black made its Broadway debut last year in similar starry fashion.

See the Prop 8 Play Online Here

Full Story from the Washington Post

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Watch it Now: Clooney, Pitt in “8” The Play

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

Watch "8" The PlayAFER Just posted the whole “8” the Play to you tube – watch it here now to see the great performances by George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Jane Lynch, Matt Bomer, Matthew Morrison, Christine Lahti, Jamie Lee Curtis, and many more who have joined us in the fight for marriage equality.

From AFER:

“Uncover the truth about marriage for gay and lesbian Americans. George Clooney, Martin Sheen and Jane Lynch join an all-star cast for a one-night-only benefit reading of “8,” the new play by Academy-award winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black (Milk, J. Edgar) that chronicles the landmark federal trial of California’s Prop. 8 using the actual court transcripts and first-hand interviews.”

Support AFER and the Prop 8 Fight Here

George Clooney and All Star Cast Shine in Prop 8 Play Reading

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

Prop 8 Play Reading - George Clooney, Brad PittMy husband Mark and I just finished watching the Prop 8 Play live from Los Angeles, featuring an amazing array of stars, from George Clooney and Martin Sheen as Olson and Boies to the amazing Jane Lynch as Maggie Gallagher with a stare that could stop a truck.

But the emotional core of the night’s performance was carried by Christine Lahti as one of the four prop 8 plaintiffs, especially when she spoke movingly about how her sister’s death at a young age inflamed in her a desire to be a mother, and how, the defense attorney’s claims notwithstanding, how much she had fought for the chance to be a mother to her two twin sons.

The play also laid bare the pathetic nature of the defense witnesses, especially in the performance of George Takei, who got one of the best laughs of the night, and the clueless brilliance of John C. Reilly, who ultimately functioned as a witness for the plaintiffs.

Both Clooney and Sheen were fantastic, with Clooney saying more with a stare than many actors could manage with ten lines, and Brad Pitt, a late addition, brought just the right amount of skepticism to the role of Judge Walker.

After the play, the real plaintiffs and attorneys took the stage, and made the point that if marriage equality’s opponents hadn’t fought so hard and long to keep the video tapes of the trial under lock and key, this amazing night might never have happened.

And the play reminded us – “the stand is a lonely place to lie.”

The full play should be posted live soon – we’ll add it or a link to it here as soon as we can.

Prop 8 Play’s Reading to Be Broadcast Live on You Tube Saturday Night

Friday, March 2nd, 2012

Prop 8 Play BroadcastYouTube has announced it will broadcast the star-studded LA reading of Duston Lance Black’s Proposition 8 play this weekend.

Brad Pitt was confirmed today as the actor playing Judge Vaughn Walker in the play which details how the California ballot measure which revoked gay citizens’ right to marry was ruled unconstitutional for the first time in 2010.

Actor, director and AFER co-founder Rob Reiner announced that the play would be broadcast live on the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER)’s YouTube channel this Saturday evening.

Full Story from Pink News

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George Clooney on Marriage Equality

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Outspoken Oscar winner George Clooney recently sat down with The Advocate to discuss his appearance in a staged reading of Academy Award-winning Milk scribe Dustin Lance Black’s Prop 8 play, 8. Though the interview primarily dealt with Clooney’s feelings on gay rights, the actor did offer up a few nuggets about his famous friends Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling.

Of his Ides of March costar, Clooney — who never misses a minute to invoke his two-time Sexiest Man Alive status — decried Gosling’s 2011 SMA snub. “Not that I don’t think Bradley Cooper is a perfectly sexy guy,” qualified Clooney, “but I’m still shocked that Ryan Gosling didn’t get Sexiest Man Alive last year. I thought he worked hard and ran a very solid campaign, so I feel that he was ripped off.”

As for his participation in 8, Clooney explained, “I felt that it was important to again bring focus to an issue that, in the very near future, we’ll look back on and laugh at the fact that it was ever an issue. It’s the right thing to do.” He drew parallels between this struggle and the Civil Right movement, saying, “One day the marriage equality fight will look as archaic as George Wallace standing on the University of Alabama steps keeping James Hood from attending college because he was black. People will be embarrassed to have been on the wrong side.”

Full Story from

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George Clooney: Marriage Equality “The Final Leg of The Civil Rights Movement”

Saturday, January 14th, 2012

George Clooney, who will play LGBT ally David Boies in the upcoming L.A. stage production of Dustin Lance Black’s 8, believes it’s only a matter of time before the final nail is hammered into the coffin of marriage equality opposition.

Speaking with E!’s Marc Malkin, Clooney reiterated his support for same-sex marriage, calling it the “final leg” of the country’s civil rights movement.

“I think the world is changing and it’s becoming less and less of an issue and I think it shouldn’t be long now. I think younger people are looking at this like, ‘Who cares?’

Full Story from Instinct

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George Clooney Joins Cast of Dustin Lance Black Prop 8 Play for Special Performance

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Prop 8 PlayGeorge Clooney shows his support to marriage equality by joining the cast of a stage play called “8”. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the 50-year-old actor is set to star in the one-night-only show that will be held at the Wilshire Ebell Theater in Los Angeles on March 3, 2012.

The play itself follows “the historic federal court trial overtuning Proposition 8, the ballot measure that denied gay and lesbian Californians the right to marry.” Serving as the helmer for the play is veteran actor/filmmaker Rob Reiner, while the script will be written by “J. Edgar” and “Milk” scribe Dustin Lance Black.

Showing his concern to the marriage equality issue, Clooney said, “It is astonising that gay and lesbian Americans are still treated as second-class citizens. I am confident that, very soon, the laws of this nation will reflect the basic truth that gay and lesbian people, like all human beings, are born equal in dignity and rights.”

Full Story from Aces Showbiz

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