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Today We March

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

gay wedding

Twenty three years ago, I walked into the Pacific Center, an LGBT center in Berkeley, California, for a gay men’s night, having no idea that I would meet the love of my life, my husband Mark.

That I can call him my husband, legally, under the laws of both the Federal Government and all fifty states, would have seemed an impossibility to me back then.

The first gay wedding I ever attended was in the late 80’s, when a high school friend of mine “married” his partner in Southern California. I put the word “married” in quotes because, back then, it was such an impossible concept – this idea that two men could marry – and it was at once an act of defiance and an act of love.

The ceremony, such as it was, involved five of us – the two grooms and three friends. We went to the Huntington Museum – a gorgeous place in Arcadia, California – and together we entered the bamboo garden. There, amidst the tall stands of bamboo, with the three of us huddled protectively around the couple so no one else could see, they exchanged hurried vows and rings.

I was all of 22 years old.

What a different world the young adults of today are entering into. When Mark and I met in 1992, we didn’t believe this day would come in our lifetimes. When we started our LGBT wedding directory, PurpleUnions.com, the name itself implied that we were lucky to get the recognition of civil unions. I still kick myself for not also having bought PurpleWeddings.com. LOL…

In 2008, we jumped into advocacy with both feet, starting the Gay Marriage Watch blog, which later became Marriage Equality Watch. In that year, anti gay laws were still gaining ground, and our bright, beautiful victory in California at the state Supreme Court was quickly eclipsed by the lies and hatred of Prop 8. Even then, just seven years ago, we didn’t know if we would get here.

The fall of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell put the foot on the accelerator, as the country saw out and proud military veterans for the first time, and all that activist energy flowed from the military into marriage equality and other LGBT movements.

The US Supreme Court rulings in 2014 only threw more fuel on the fire. I had hoped for marriage equality nationwide by 2020. I didn’t dare dream it would arrive so soon.

Mark and I have married twice – once in 2004 in San Francisco, only to see it snatched away from us, and again in 2008, also in The City. Many other same sex couples have now done the same around the country and around the world.

There are still other battles to be fought. In many states in the US, you can be fired or kicked out of your home for being LGBT. Transgender rights deserve much more of our attention. And there are many places around the world where it’s still a criminal act to be gay.

But those are fights to start tomorrow.

Today Mark and I will celebrate what has come before, and where we are now.

Today, in San Francisco, we march.

USA, Massachusetts: Adding Insult to Injury, Parade Lets Scott Lively March

Monday, March 17th, 2014

Scott LivelyThe man at least partially responsible for stirring up homophobia in Russia and Uganda and encouraging both to pass harsh anti gay laws marched in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Boston yesterday, while gays were turned away.

Seriously.

On Top Magazine reports:

Scott Lively, an ardent opponent of gay rights and a Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate, marched in South Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day parade on Sunday. The parade’s policy banning gay organizations from participating has been widely criticized. Many politicians, including Mayor Marty J. Walsh and Congressman Stephen Lynch, skipped the parade over the policy.

Could the organizers of the Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade be any more insultingly homophobic and anti-gay than this?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Massachusetts.

India: Hundreds March in New Delhi for Gay Rights

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Hundreds of gay rights activists marched through New Delhi on Sunday to demand that they be allowed to lead lives of dignity in India’s deeply conservative society.

Dozens of demonstrators carried a nearly 15-meter (50-foot) -long, rainbow-colored banner and waved placards demanding that the government extend the scope of anti-discrimination laws to schools, workplaces and public and private spaces.

Activists said that three years after the Delhi High Court made changes in India’s colonial-era law that made gay sex a crime, homosexuals are still not socially accepted in India.

Authored By Nirmala George – See the Full Story at Edge Boston

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

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Maryland, USA: Marriage Equality Activists March in Fourth of July Parades

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Gay Marriage Activists March in Fourth of July Parades in MarylandThe Columbia/Howard County chapter of PFLAG organized a contingent of more than 40 sign- and flag-waving folks of all ages that marched in the River Hill annual 4th of July parade. River Hill is a village in Columbia. Many marchers wore purple T-shirts with the white inscription, “Vote for the Civil Marriage Protection Act.”

They chanted support for marriage equality and tossed out candy to the crowd as well as colored beads with a message attached urging people to vote for marriage equality in November. Two volunteers from Marylanders for Marriage Equality (MD4ME) were part of the contingent.

In Annapolis there was also a solid turnout. The MD4ME group marched in the parade along with representatives of the Trevor Project.

Authored By Steve Charing – See the Full Story at The Washington Blade

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Maryland.

To subscribe to this blog, use the rss feed on the right, or use the form at right to join our email list. You can also email us at info@purpleunions.com. Or find us on Facebook. We’re also tweeting daily at http://www.twitter.com/gaymarriagewatc.

Maryland, USA: Pride Parade Rallies Supporters of Marriage Equality Law

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

Maryland, USA: Pride Parade Rallies Supporters of Marriage Equality LawThe Baltimore Pride Festival was as much political rally as it was party Sunday, with supporters of same-sex marriage galvanizing a base of thousands to attempt to win a looming ballot fight.

Dozens of volunteers for both the Marylanders for Marriage Equality coalition and President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign spread throughout Druid Hill Park on the final day of Baltimore Pride — the annual celebration of the city’s gay and lesbian community — passing out stickers, selling T-shirts, registering voters and enlisting supporters. Their promotional materials were nearly ubiquitous.

“This is about people’s lives,” said Kevin Nix, a marriage equality coalition spokesman. “It’s about people getting married and protecting their kids.”

Full Story from The Baltimore Sun

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Maryland.

To subscribe to this blog, use the rss feed on the right, or use the form at right to join our email list. You can also email us at info@purpleunions.com. Or find us on Facebook. We’re also tweeting daily at http://www.twitter.com/gaymarriagewatc.

Slovakia: Skinhead Attack Cancels First Gay Pride March

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Slovakia’s first ever gay pride parade was canceled today after skinheads attacked the participants with rocks, eggs and a tear gas grenade. Organizers are blaming police for not providing adequate protection. Eight neo-Nazis were arrested and there were no serious injuries.

Members of the neo-Nazi group Slovenska Pospolitost attacked the participants at a pre-parade rally for LGBT rights. A tear gas canister thrown by one of the approximately 80 neo-Nazis interrupted the rally, attended by 500 people, while the extremists also were throwing eggs at the participants, the Sme daily reported.

Two rally participants who were carrying a rainbow flag, the symbol of the parade, were attacked by the neo-Nazis at Hviezdoslav Square in Bratislava. They attacked the flag barriers with their fists in the face, the SITA newswire reported. The rally and parade had been announced long in advance and observers said that the police had enough time to prepare for the security and safety of the parade participants.

Full Story from Joe.My.God

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To subscribe to this blog, use the rss feed on the right, or use the form at right to join our email list. You can also email us at info@purpleunions.com. Or find us on Facebook – just search for Gay Marriage Watch (you’ll see our b/w wedding pic overlooking the Ferry Building and Bay Bridge in SF). We’re also tweeting daily at http://www.twitter.com/gaymarriagewatc.