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Adorable Teen Couple: Soccer Player Dances With Homecoming King

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Michael and Jem

A gay teen soccer player in West Virginia came out with his boyfriend, the Homecoming King, at the high school dance.

Outsports reports:

It was something I thought I’d never do — dance a slow dance with the homecoming king at his high school. I am an 18-year-old senior all-state high school soccer goalie for Musselman High School in West Virginia. I also have been on the school’s football, tennis and swim teams. And I am openly gay. Growing up in rural West Virginia, it’s not the easiest place to be a gay teenager and it took me a long time to come out to myself and others.

Yet there we were, Jem and I, on an October night this fall, slow dancing with each other. We attend schools in different counties and met through friends and I was thrilled that he asked me to his dance so we could be together. He was wearing his gray vest and pink bow tie while I had on my black shirt with a gold tie. We danced to “Love Story” by Taylor Swift, which was a perfect song for my first dance with a guy.

We both started the dance with our female friends who were our “dates.” The final song came on and Jem and I danced for a brief time. It was my first school event where I was with another guy, even though we came to the dance separately. I held his hand when we went to get refreshments and when we took breaks from dancing. It was a weird feeling for me, since I had just barely started coming out. I was nervous yet excited. After the dance we went to his house. That is where I asked him to be my boyfriend. I posed the question by writing it on the dry erase board on his wall. He quickly said yes.

This story was just too adorable not to share – read the whole thing. This is why we fight.

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West Virginia Drops Fight Against Marriage Equality

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

West VirginiaThe Attorney General has dropped his fight against the marriage equality lawsuit, and same sex couples are now marrying in the state.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

Same-sex couples are being issued marriage applications in West Virginia. County clerks issued the applications for gay couples to wed Thursday after Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said his office would no longer fight a court challenge to the state’s ban on same-sex marriages. Department of Health and Human Resources spokeswoman Allison Adler said the state registrar is directed county clerks to use existing marriage license forms until the paperwork can be updated. The registrar is in charge of any alterations to state marriage forms.

Amazing, amazing week.

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Marriage Equality Updates: West Virginia

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

West VirginiaWe’re running down some of the updates in the aftermath of the shocking Supreme Court decision to turn down all the pending marriage equality cases.

Next, West Virginia.

West Virginia did not have a case before the Supreme Court, but the ruling in Virginia should pave the way for marriage equality there. Lambda Legal is pushing for that to happen sooner rather than later.

SDGLN reports:

Lambda Legal this afternoon asked the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia immediately to lift its stay on the West Virginia marriage case, McGee v. Cole, and to enter a judgment in favor of the plaintiffs. The Supreme Court’s action today means that the 4th Circuit’s decision in Bostic striking down Virginia’s marriage ban as unconstitutional is now final, and that its legal reasoning is controlling in all the states within the 4th Circuit including West Virginia. “There is no reason for the Court to delay any longer,” said Karen Loewy, Senior Attorney and Lambda Legal’s lead attorney in this case.

Same sex couples in all 50 states deserve the freedom to marry now. That’s not going to happen yet, but let’s do everything we can to get to 30 as soon as possible.

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Marriage Equality Updates: Colorado

Monday, October 6th, 2014

ColoradoWe’re running down some of the updates in the aftermath of the shocking Supreme Court decision to turn down all the pending marriage equality cases.

Next, Colorado.

Colorado wasn’t one of the five states with a lawsuit pending with the Supremes, but the AG has ordered all 64 counties to prepare to issue licenses to same sex couples.

SDGLN reports:

The state’s Attorney General John Suthers on Monday said all 64 county clerks must begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear all appeals on gay marriage bans. A same-sex couple in Pueblo County received the first license within hours — apparently the first gay marriage in Colorado after the high court’s action. Clerks in Boulder and Denver said they were awaiting final clearance. Once the legal formalities are finalized, same-sex marriage will be legal throughout Colorado.

Governor John Hickenlooper had this to say:

“Today marks a historic day on the march towards marital equality. The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision not to review the same-sex marriage cases in other states means that 10th Circuit’s decision is binding in Colorado. While there are a few more steps in the process, we are that much closer to declaring marriage equality for all Coloradans.”

Colorado will soon have full marriage equality – get ready for wedding bells across the Rockies.

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West Virginia Marriage Equality Case Put on Hold

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

West VirginiaA lawsuit in West Virginia has been put on hold.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

U.S. District Judge Robert C. Chambers entered an order Tuesday that stayed the case filed in West Virginia by three couples last October until the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decides a case from Virginia. Gay rights group Lambda Legal filed the lawsuit contending West Virginia’s Defense of Marriage Act unfairly discriminates against same-sex couples and their children.

We’re currently awaiting the decision from a three judge panel in the Virginia case. They heard the case in mid May.

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USA, West Virginia: City Passes Marriage Equality Resolution

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

West VirginiaThe city of Morgantown has unanimously passed a resolution favoring marriage equality.

The DA Online reports:

The Morgantown City Council unanimously approved a resolution in support of the Employment and Housing Non-Discrimination Act in the West Virginia Legislature and a resolution in support of marriage equality in the West Virginia Legislature. The two resolutions were of large public interest; dozens of people unable to go inside the chamber due to seat limitations. More than 20 people, including West Virginia University students and faculty and representatives from various organizations, took a stand and expressed their support for the resolutions without opposition.

Unanimous, and without opposition – in West Virginia!!!

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USA, West Virginia: Marriage Equality Case Can Proceed

Friday, January 31st, 2014

West VirginiaA Federal Court in West Virginia has given the go-ahed for a marriage equality lawsuit there.

Lambda Legal reports:

Today a U.S. District Court ruled that Lambda Legal will be allowed to proceed with its case on behalf of three same-sex couples seeking the freedom to marry in West Virginia. “We are pleased that our West Virginia families will have their day in court to show why they should be treated fairly by the government,” said Karen Loewy, Lambda Legal Senior Attorney. “By moving to dismiss, the government was trying to prevent us from showing exactly how the marriage ban harms families. West Virginia’s exclusion interferes with families like Nancy and Jane’s ability to make decisions for their children in school enrollment, travel, health care, and other matters. These families need marriage and should not have to live with a law that treats them as inferior.”

Another day, another red state, another marriage equality lawsuit. Amazing times.

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USA, West Virginia: Attorney General Wants Marriage Equality Lawsuit Thrown Out

Friday, December 20th, 2013

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick MorriseyClaiming that the state law banning marriage equality causes no immediate harm, West Virginia’s Attorney General wants a judge to throw out a lawsuit.

Towleroad reports:

West Virginia Attorney General has motioned for a judge to throw out a lawsuit challenging the state’s ban on gay marriage, the WV Gazette reports: In its motion, the state claims two reasons why the lawsuit filed by three same-sex couples should be dismissed: state law doesn’t cause them any immediate harm and the couples aren’t married, so the fact West Virginia doesn’t recognize same-sex marriages from other states doesn’t affect them, according to state attorneys. “The statute causes no concrete and immediate injury to Plaintiffs, who allege only the desire to marry each other in West Virginia and have not alleged that they are or intend to be married in another State,” the motion filed in U.S. District Court on Monday by Assistant Attorney General Julie Ann Warren says.

They’ll try every trick in the book to get their way, won’t they? What it comes down to is basic equality for same-sex couples. You can try to deny them that, but eventually, they will prevail.

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USA, West Virginia: Attorney General Wants to Intervene in Marriage Equality Case

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick MorriseyWest Virginia’s Attorney General wants to intervene in the federal lawsuit for marriage equality in West Virginia.

Edge Boston reports:

The lawsuit did not name any state officials as defendants. A judge had previously given Kanawha County Clerk Vera McCormick an extension on filing a response to the lawsuit so that Republican Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s office could determine whether it was going to intervene. McCormick’s petition seeking more time noted that the case involves a constitutional issue that “will have far ranging effects for each and every citizen of the state of West Virginia,” and for the 55 county clerks who currently are required to refuse marriage licenses to same-sex couples. It also said she has no discretion on whether to grant marriage licenses and no expertise on the legal issues at hand.

Yeah, far-ranging effects like absolutely nothing, except for the couples who can marry and their friends and family.

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USA, West Virginia: Meet One of the Couples Fighting the State’s Ban on Marriage Equality

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

West Virginia gay coupleFairness West Virginia has just released a new video profiling one of the same-sex couples in the marriage equality lawsuit in the state.

Towleroad reports:

One of those couples, Justin Murdock and his partner William Glavaris, are profiled in a beautiful new video from Fairness West Virginia. Justin and Will are based in Huntington and Justin is a board member of the organization.

Fairness West Virginia writes: Faces of Fairness is a groundbreaking project is the first of its kind in West Virginia and is comprised of a touring photography exhibit, a documentary film, and a web-based archive. The participants articulate the many issues that face LGBT West Virginians including second-parent adoption rights, medical benefits, hospital visitation rights, employment and housing discrimination, advocacy and political representation, transgender rights and protections, marriage equality, and bullying.

What an amazing young couple – a great inspiration for marriage equality in the state. Once again, I’m amazed to see this kind of action taking place in such a red state. How long until the last US state recognizes marriage equality? Calling Nate Silver…

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