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READ IT HERE: Opening brief in SCOTUS transgender rights case Gloucester County School Board v. GG

Transgender Rights

Virginia state sealThe opening brief in Gloucester County v. GG has been filed at the Supreme Court. as of now, argument has not been set, but based on the revised briefing schedule, the case will likely be argued in March or April.

The case involves GG, a student in high school in Virginia who is transgender and wants to use the correct bathroom at his school. The school board created a policy refusing to allow him to do so. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with him, ruling that the Obama administration’s guidance letters on the question of transgender bathroom use should be granted deference under current Supreme Court precedent.

The opening brief in the Supreme Court was filed by the school board. A brief from GG is expected February 23.

You can read the filing here.

Thanks to Equality Case files for these filings

61 Comments

  • 1. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    Let's hope that the timing for oral arguments for "Gloucester County School Board v. G.G." works out to be very early in April, as I am already planning to be staying there in DC, within easy walking distance of the Supreme Court building, during that interval.

  • 2. guitaristbl  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    This is pretty much a lost cause at this point – the GOP will rush to put their far right hack on court as soon as possible – meaning by very early February if possible so I can see this case lost 5-4 for trans rights.

  • 3. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:36 pm

    Pennsylvania: State Must Recognize Vermont Same-Sex Civil Unions

    Per Equality Case Files:

    Freyda Neyman and Florence Buckley could not legally marry in Pennsylvania in 2002, but the women can legally get divorced in that state in 2016, a state Superior Court panel ruled on Wednesday, 4 January 2017.

    The decision, set in an opinion by Senior Judge James J. Fitzgerald III, overturns a Philadelphia County family court judge's finding that she lacked authority to dissolve a civil union the same-sex couple entered into 14 years ago in Vermont.

    Fitzgerald noted that his court's ruling is one of the few yet issued to address how Pennsylvania should handle the dissolution of same-sex marriages and civil unions that were entered into out-of-state before such marriages became legal throughout the USA in 2015.

    The Superior Court's conclusion is that Pennsylvania courts must regard Vermont civil unions as the "functional equivalent" of marriages sanctioned by the Keystone State. That means Pennsylvania's divorce law applies to them as well, Fitzgerald found.

    The opinion is available here:
    http://bit.ly/2iG4nze

    Comment: Although Massachusetts is usually cited as being the first state to recognize and legalize same-sex marriage (from 2004), Vermont, with its same-sex civil unions (from 2002), actually pre-dates that Massachusetts court ruling, a ruling that also stipulated that at least one person of the couple be a Massachusetts resident. As a result of Vermont's less-restrictive legislation, a large number of out-of-state same-sex couples from everywhere rushed to Vermont to be "civil unioned" during the early part of that decade.

  • 4. allan120102  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    I hope democrats fight the most they can in taking its time of a supreme court justice being comfirm so the case is heard before the new appointee takes seat. if it ends 4-4 then the 4th circuit would be affirm and the trans community residing in those 4 state would have protections for a while until a new case is appeal.

  • 5. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    Guitar: I think not.

    With Kennedy on our side, the current composition of the Court is 5-3 in our favor. I can't see Kennedy ruling against us, as it would impugn his many previous rulings in favor of Due Process and Equal Protection. He won't deliberately destroy his own Court legacy. And if Roberts (as Chief Justice) had any sense of preserving HIS Court legacy, he, too, would rule in our favor, given that this case will be reflective of one of the most important rights issues of the era.

    Besides, it's fairly likely that the US Senate can stall the appointment of an unsavory nominee for a good length of time.

  • 6. JayJonson  |  January 5, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    I agree that Kennedy will be with us and will not deliberately destroy his legacy. However, I have no confidence that Roberts will do the right thing. His legacy is one of attempting to obstruct gay rights whenever he can. Had he wanted to be on the side of one of the most important rights issues of the era, he would have joined the majority in Obergefell.

  • 7. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    " I have no confidence that Roberts will do the right thing."

    I don't either. That's why I said, "If he had any sense."

  • 8. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    New York: Claim for Sexual Orientation Employment Discrimination

    Per Equality Case Files:

    In "Zarda v. Altitude Express," a claim for sexual orientation employment discrimination under Title VII and the NY State Human Rights Law, the case was argued today, 5 January 2015, before the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.
    • Panel: Circuit Judges Dennis Jacobs, Rober D. Sack, and Gerard E. Lynch
    • Attorneys arguing:
    – For Plaintiff-Appellant: Gregory Antollino
    – For Defendants-Appellees: Saul D. Zabell

    • Parties’ Briefs on the Merits:
    – Plaintiff-Appellant’s Opening Brief: http://files.eqcf.org/cases/15-3775-108
    – Defendants-Appellees’ Response Brief: http://bit.ly/2iMAIXP
    – Plaintiff-Appellant’s Reply Brief: http://bit.ly/2iIsoWh

    • Amicus Briefs in support of Appellant and Reversal:
    – Lambda Legal: http://bit.ly/2iFymt0
    – ACLU, et al.: http://bit.ly/2hWIFrS

    • Joint Appendix. The appendix has documents from the district court proceedings. See Vol 1 for table of contents:
    – Vol 1: http://bit.ly/2hWVmDd
    – Vol 2: http://bit.ly/2hVChCQ
    – Vol 3: http://bit.ly/2ifDaCj
    – Vol 4: http://bit.ly/2ifJ1aX
    – Vol 5: http://bit.ly/2hVCC8M
    – Vol 6: http://bit.ly/2iMKn0f
    • Appellant’s Special Appendix: http://bit.ly/2j8wIx0
    • Appellees’ Supplemental Appendix: http://bit.ly/2hVF7Yw

  • 9. scream4ever  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    Let's hope similar cases regarding Title VII and sexual orientation work their way up to the Supreme Court quickly before the composition has a chance to change.

  • 10. scream4ever  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    I like to think that Kennedy will side with us, but the fact that he voted to stay the ruling troubles me a bit.

  • 11. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    Virginia: Governor Issues Executive Order Banning LGBTQ Discrimination

    Virginia‘s governor, Democrat Terry McAuliffe, signed an executive order today, 5 January 2017, making it illegal for state employees, contractors, and subcontractors to discriminate against anyone because of how they identify or who they love.

    “Starting today, the Commonwealth of Virginia will not do business with entities that discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity,” said McAuliffe in a statement, as reported by the "Washington Blade." “Virginia is home to the best state workforce in the country and this policy will ensure there is no question that all Virginians are to receive the full benefits of their citizenship, without regard to their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

    The order comes two days after a Republican lawmaker introduced a bill in the Virginia House of Delegates to regulate the use of public bathrooms by transgender people, and to out any student who identifies as transgender to all the parents of his or her classmates. But Virginia’s governor clearly has a very different perspective:

    “Governor McAuliffe has been clear that he will veto any bill that restricts the rights of Virginians based on sexual orientation or gender identity,” said his spokesperson, Brian Coy, in a written statement. “As we saw in North Carolina, these bills don’t just hamper civil rights — they kill jobs. The Governor is hopeful that Republicans in the General Assembly will drop these counter-productive bills and turn their focus toward building a stronger and more equal Virginia economy.”

    As for McAuliffe’s executive order, James Parrish, Equality Virginia’s Executive Director, described it as “a huge leap forward in our goal toward becoming a state that is a safe, welcoming, and equal place for all Virginians.”
    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/01/va-governor-ba

  • 12. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:41 pm

    Of course, in addition, this particular case also has the backing and support of the New York State Human Rights Law. Still, it's probably going to take a case from a "blue" state, like New York, to place this issue before the Supreme Court.

    Wait, we've got "Hively v. Ivy Tech" from Indiana, via the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which is further along, and being that it originated from Indiana, and involves one of Pence's stalwart petty hacks he personally appointed to run Ivy Tech, a ruling in our favor here would be far more delicious.

  • 13. allan120102  |  January 5, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    Roberts is a no no for me. He dissapoint me with Obergefell so I dont see any hope with him in terms of lgbt rights. Kennedy will be the wild card, will see if he is if he is as sympathic with transgender rights as he is with lgb rights.

  • 14. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 6:41 pm

    India: Nuns Open New School for Transgender Dropouts

    A new school and support group for transgender people in Kerala, India, is run by nuns. "PinkNews" reports the Sisters of the Congregation of Mother Carmel offered their buildings to form a welcoming place for transgender people who felt ostracized by their classmates and/or teachers.

    “The school will cater to those transgender people who had dropped out from schools at an early age due to various reasons,” said trans activist Vijaya Raja Mallika. This may be the very first group of its kind in all of India, activists say.

    “The whole Church has a big role to play,” said Father Paul Madassey, who is in charge of Pro-Life Support for the Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council, a global social service movement within the church, according to UCA News. “There is an active sex racket from north India eyeing transgender people in Kerala, and which is trying to exploit the discriminatory situation they face,” said Fr. Madassey.

    According to UCA News, there are roughly 500,000 trans people in India. Without the support of their families, a job, health coverage, and education, many wind up on the street begging for money or are exploited in the sex trade.
    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/01/nuns-india-sta

    Note: Unlike most of the rest of India, Kerala state, in south-westernmost India, has had a substantial Eastern-rite Catholic population since time immemorial, and is quite accustomed to doing things on its own, its own way,– and without outside direction.

  • 15. Fortguy  |  January 5, 2017 at 7:25 pm

    Today, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who wants to become state Commander-in-Chief of the Latrine Marine, unveiled Senate Bill 6 alongside the bill's sponsor, Sen. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) because they both have a weird fixation on other people's genitalia. The bill proposes to prohibit public agencies and local governments from allowing people to use restroom, shower, or changing facilities counter to their "biological gender" unless the public facility is leased to a private entity such as a taxpayer-supported athletic venue used by a professional team. Offending schools, colleges, or local governments may face a minimum $1,000 civil violation on first offense.

    The bill throws out local anti-transgender discrimination ordinances and allows private businesses and property owners to establish their own bathroom use policies. This, presumably, was included to allow the president-elect to continue to enter the changing room at the Miss Teenage USA pageant should he choose to hold the event within the state.

    Alexa Ura, Bobby Blanchard and Todd Wiseman, The Texas Tribune: Following North Carolina's lead, Texas GOP unveils so-called “bathroom bill"

    John Wright, Texas Observer: Patrick, Kolkhorst Unveil ‘Deeply Divisive’ Anti-Trans Bathroom Bill

    The good news is that Speaker Joe Straus' House leadership may not be happy at all about the prospect of Patrick leering at their junk when they pee in the Capitol's restrooms.

    John Wright, Texas Observer: Five Queer Predictions for LGBT Texas in 2017

    Wright, after peering into his "glittery, bedazzled crystal ball", also sees a 2017 that, while less than rosy, isn't all bleak.

  • 16. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    Gambia: The Plot Sickens Even More

    Today, 5 January 2017, a Gambian newspaper accused members of the LGBT community of plotting a coup against President Yahya Jammeh. "The Daily Observer," which a human rights activist described to the "Washington Blade" as a “state-run propaganda outlet,” wrote in an editorial that Jammeh has “defied the LBGT Lobby who is allied with the Oil and Gas Lobby in an endeavor to undertake a Regime Change Coup in the Gambia.”

    Jammeh lost to Adama Barrow, an independent candidate who represented the United Democratic Party, a coalition of eight opposition parties, in his country’s presidential elections that took place on 1 December 2016. Jammeh initially said he would not challenge the results. However, on 9 December, he abruptly announced that he would not accept them, citing what he described as voting irregularities.

    West African heads of state who attended a summit of the Economic Community of West African States that took place last month in the Nigerian capital of Abuja said they plan to attend Barrow’s inauguration on 19 January. The Associated Press reported ECOWAS President Marcel de Souza said the group would consider military intervention to enforce the Gambian election results.

    In the meantime, the Associated Press has also reported that Alieu Momarr Njai, chair of Gambia’s Independent Electoral Commission that certified the election results, has fled the country.
    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/01/05/lgbt-co

    It is well worth noting that Jammeh personally owns a $3.5 million mansion is very tony, hyper-up-scale Potomac MD.

  • 17. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    Denmark: "Transgender" No Longer Mental Health Disorder

    On Sunday, 1 January 2017, Denmark became the first country in the world to officially remove transgender identities from its list of mental health disorders. The decision, supported by all parties in the Danish Parliament, was originally made back in May 2016 following a lack of progress from the World Health Organization.

    “This very encouraging move from Denmark sets a strong example internationally towards destigmatizing transgender people and paving the way for quick and transparent processes for legal gender recognition,” said Amnesty International's Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Advisor, Leda Avgousti, in a statement.
    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/01/04/denmark

    In May 2014, Denmark repealed a law that forced trans people to undergo sterilization before legally changing their gender.

    In 1989, Denmark was the first country in the world to legalize and recognize same-sex civil marriage (at the time, known as "registered partnerships," but converted to "marriage" in 2012).

  • 18. scream4ever  |  January 5, 2017 at 10:13 pm

    Ivy Tech is awaiting a decision from the 7th Circuit any day now…

  • 19. VIRick  |  January 5, 2017 at 11:06 pm

    A Closer Look at Trump’s Potential Supreme Court Nominees

    These eight potential nominees have been identified by people on the transition team as front-runners to replace the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia:

    William Pryor, 54
    Judge, 11th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Diane Sykes, 59
    Judge, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Raymond Kethledge, 50
    Judge, 6th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Joan Larsen, 48
    Justice, Michigan Supreme Court

    Neil Gorsuch, 49
    Judge, 10th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Steven Colloton, 53
    Judge, 8th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Raymond Gruender, 53
    Judge, 8th Circuit Court of Appeals

    Thomas Hardiman, 51
    Judge, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals
    http://www.politico.com/story/2017/01/trumps-supr

    Personally, since he has no idea who any of these people are, nor does he actually care who they are, nor view the entire judiciary with much regard, I still think he'll opt for his older sister, even though she's way too old:

    Judge Maryanne Trump Barry, 79
    Senior Judge, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals

  • 20. allan120102  |  January 6, 2017 at 9:22 am

    Hahaha Rick, he will not choose his sister. Conservatives would kill him if he do that. Would be political suicide. I think he will choose between Pryor, Colloton or Kethledge.

  • 21. allan120102  |  January 6, 2017 at 9:27 am

    Chiapas is being propelled by lgbt groups to legalize ssm as soon as possible. A marriage occur today and 12 more are expected making Chiapas one of the top 5 were same sex marriage are occuring by amparo. http://aquinoticias.mx/ruby-esmeralda-primer-matr

  • 22. allan120102  |  January 6, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Edomex is another state were lgbt groups are looking to legalize ssm as his governor is pretty much lgbt friendly. Edomex is the most pupolous state in Mexico will be pretty cool to win it.
    The legal counsel of the state noted that one of the solutions to same sex marriage be legalized is that the SCJN declared the Civil Code void; Criticized the court "for not getting full to the subject"

    The approval of egalitarian marriage in the State of Mexico is an issue that "is on the ballot" of the local Legislature and does not depend on the will of the governor in the state, said the legal counsel of the state, Luz Maria Zarza Delgado .

    In an exclusive interview with Noticias del Centro, the jurist stated that the Mexican state president Eruviel Ávila Villegas "already fulfilled" his duty, having sent since last May, an initiative to Congress to legalize civil unions between same-sex couples, so Which, he reiterated, it is the deputies who must discuss and approve said law.

    However, he pointed out that because of the divisions that have generated among the population the possibility that the LGBT population has the same rights as heterosexuals, it has made it difficult for the Chamber of Deputies to agree, stating that the lack of Consensus is a reflection of the discrepancies that exist about egalitarian marriage in society.

    "It is an issue that at national level generates many divisions, there are criteria found, we have those who have the perception of legality, non-discrimination, but it is not the majority and should continue to discuss for concessions," he said.

    At the same time, Zarza said that a solution for civil unions between people of the same sex to become a reality in the state, is that the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN) resolve the nullity of the Civil Code state, , He said, would force change the law and the issue would no longer be subject to discussion by either political groups or congressmen.

    "The court should have solved the nullity, but it has not done so, it has had a careful criterion, the only thing it does is to authorize those who promote the amparo, but it does not oblige to annul the law, nor has the court entered the issue of Complete way, "he finished.
    http://noticiasdelcentro.mx/nosotros-305/

  • 23. allan120102  |  January 6, 2017 at 9:42 am

    His nephew is pretty gay friendly. Not all of his family is a bigot.
    The Gambian government rescinded a scholarship that it had given to Jammeh’s nephew, Alagie Jammeh, to study at the University of California, Santa Barbara, after he posted pro-LGBT messages to his Facebook page in 2014.

    Alagie Jammeh received asylum in the U.S. last May.
    https://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/01/05/lgbt-c

  • 24. allan120102  |  January 6, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Peru. Hate crimes laws will take effect tomorrow it will protect sexual orientation and gender identity. I am happy that Peru choose a president sympathetic with our rights.
    Within the framework of the delegation of legislative powers granted to the Executive Power, Legislative Decree No. 1323 was published today, which incorporates sexual orientation and gender identity as aggravating circumstances of crimes when these are the motives for their execution. Likewise, Legislative Decree No. 1325 has been published that provides specialized treatment in health to the penitentiary population LGTBIQ.
    Hate crimes and discrimination

    The norm, which will come into effect as of tomorrow, will have the consequence that hate crimes committed against the LGTBIQ community are identified as such and sanctioned more severely due to the reasons of intolerance or discrimination that have motivated the aggressor.

    Likewise, the Legislative Decree has modified the criminal type of crimes of discrimination and incitement to discrimination, which have incorporated sexual orientation and gender identity as express reasons for their configuration. These offenses condemn the exclusion, restriction or preferences that nullify or impair the recognition, enjoyment or exercise of any right of a person or incitement to them, including by means such as the internet.

    Prior to this amendment, the Penal Code only stated that it constituted an aggravating circumstance of the offenses of execution on the grounds of intolerance or discrimination of any kind, and that the inclusion of sexual orientation or gender identity was subject to the Interpretation of judges and prosecutors.

    This proposal has been found on the agenda of the LGTBIQ community since 2011, when it was proposed by Congressman Carlos Bruce; But was rejected when it was debated in the House of Congress. Likewise, the Draft Criminal Code that was debated in Congress in 2015 contemplated both gender identity and sexual orientation as grounds for the crime of discrimination, but both were eliminated after the congressmen Rosas and Urquizo expressed their disagreement.

    This time the amendment has come from the Executive within the framework of the legislative powers granted by Congress in matters of citizen security. The congressman of the ruling party Alberto de Belaunde recalled through his Facebook that this measure is in compliance with the plan of government presented by the Peruvian party for the Kambio.

    Specialized treatment of penitentiary population

    Legislative Decree No. 1325 was also published today by which the National Penitentiary Institute (INPE) has been declared in emergency for reasons of safety, health, overcrowding and infrastructure.

    Among the measures taken to restructure this institution in terms of health conditions, it has been established that the vulnerable penitentiary population will receive specialized and comprehensive treatment, especially for reasons of gender identity or sexual orientation.

    For these purposes, the Ministry of Women and Vulnerable Populations as well as the competent institutions that assist this population will have a period of 30 days to coordinate with INPE the intervention with programs of care for the prison population. http://sinetiquetas.org/2017/01/06/peru-aprueban-

  • 25. guitaristbl  |  January 6, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    The worst of the worst I see – expected. I expect one of the most bigoted ones – Colloton, Gruender or Pryor.

  • 26. VIRick  |  January 6, 2017 at 12:49 pm

    New Jersey: Federal Suit Filed Against Catholic Hospital for Refusing Hysterectomy

    Trenton NJ — On Thursday, 5 January 2017, a transgender man filed a federal lawsuit against a Roman Catholic hospital, saying it cited religion in refusing to allow his surgeon to perform a hysterectomy as part of his gender transition. Jionni Conforti’s sex and gender discrimination lawsuit comes as new regulations hailed as groundbreaking anti-discrimination protections for transgender people are under legal attack from religious groups.

    Conforti had scheduled the surgery at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson in 2015. He says a hospital administrator told him the procedure to remove his uterus couldn’t be done because it was a “Catholic hospital.”

    Conforti, who is represented by the nonprofit Lambda Legal, said a nurse in charge of surgery confirmed the procedure could be scheduled, but his doctor was told later it wouldn’t be allowed because it was for gender reassignment. An email cited in the lawsuit from the hospital’s director of mission services, Father Martin Rooney, said it couldn’t allow the surgery because it’s a Catholic hospital. But the hospital’s patient bill of rights guarantees medical services without discrimination based on “gender identity or expression,” the lawsuit said.

    Although he had the procedure performed three months later at a different hospital, he said he’s suing so no one else has to go through what he did. Conforti, 33, is seeking monetary damages and a requirement the hospital perform any needed medical care for transgender patients.

    Another legal challenge to regulations, but from the opposite direction, that Catholic hospitals say would force them to perform gender transitioning procedures and abortions was filed in federal court last week in North Dakota by a group of Catholic businesses and organizations, including the Catholic Benefits Association and the Diocese of Fargo.
    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/01/transgender-ma

  • 27. VIRick  |  January 6, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    Virginia State House Election: Transgender Challenger v. Homophobic Old Fart

    A journalist would become the first openly transgender person ever elected to the Virginia General Assembly if she were to defeat state Del. Bob Marshall (R-Prince William County) in November. On 3 January 2017, Danica Roem announced her campaign against the anti-LGBT Republican who has represented the 13th District in the Virginia House of Delegates since 1992.

    Roem, a Manassas resident who attended local schools, was a reporter for the Gainesville Times from 2006-2015. She also worked for the Prince William Times, which is an offshoot of the Gainesville Times, from 2011-2015. She covered Virginia for the National Journal from 2009-2013.

    Roem last September testified in support of a proposal that would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the Prince William County School District’s non-discrimination policy. “We need non-discrimination policies that include us,” she said.

    Roem announced her candidacy on the same day that Marshall introduced a bill that would prohibit people from entering “a restroom or other facility designated for use by members of the opposite sex.” House Bill 1612, which is also known as the Physical Privacy Act, would also require public school principals to notify a parent or guardian within 24 hours if their child “requests to be recognized or treated as the opposite sex, to use a name or pronoun inconsistent with the child’s sex, or to use a restroom or other facility designated for the opposite sex.”

    “Del. Marshall once again has taken his eye off the ball by focusing on legislation that cost North Carolina hundreds of millions of dollars, hundreds of jobs, the election of their Republican governor, and that would stigmatize his own constituents here in the 13th district,” Roem told the Blade.

    Of the 41 bills that Marshall introduced during the 2016 legislative session, Roem pointed out to the Blade that only one of them passed. “He’s as effective as a rookie member of the minority party,” she said.
    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/01/06/transge

    Note: Prince William County is currently receiving the brunt of the suburban sprawl spreading southward from Metro DC, and thus has a demographic that has already rapidly changed since 1992, making it a prime area for urban-oriented Democrats to oust a long-standing, old guard, homophobic Republican. Virginia has its state House elections this November.

  • 28. VIRick  |  January 6, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Mexico: Ex-President Vicente Fox Quesada Tweets Against Trump's Ridiculous Wall

    "Trump may ask whoever he wants, but still neither myself nor Mexico are going to pay for his racist monument. Another promise he can't keep."
    11:33 PM – 5 Jan 2017

    "TRUMP, when will you understand that I am not paying for that fucken wall. Be clear with US tax payers. They will pay for it."
    5:18 PM – 6 Jan 2017

    "Sr Trump, the intelligence report is devastating. Losing election by more than 3M votes and in addition this. Are you a legitimate president?"
    6:44 PM – 6 Jan 2017

    "The Hill" reports:

    Former Mexican President Vicente Fox on Friday, 6 January 2017, knocked President-elect Donald Trump’s promise to build a wall on the US-Mexico border, reiterating that Mexico will not pay “for that f—– wall.” “Be clear with US tax payers. They will pay for it,” Fox told Trump in a tweet.

    Reports emerged Thursday evening, 5 January, that Trump was coordinating with House Republican lawmakers to build the proposed wall using US taxpayer dollars, despite his campaign pledge that Mexico would pay for the project.

    Trump on Friday appeared to concede that American taxpayers would foot the initial bill for the wall. In a tweet blasting the “dishonest media,” Trump wrote that “any money spent on building the Great Wall (for sake of speed), will be paid back by Mexico later.”
    http://www.joemygod.com/2017/01/06/vicente-fox-me

    For some odd reason, I keep thinking of one of Reagan's quotes, "Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"

    Plus, I suspect China already has a patent on the term "Great Wall."

    Note: Vicente Fox, a conservative businessman, was President of Mexico in 2000-2006 under the banner of PAN, the right-wing political party most dependent for political support upon maintaining open borders and free-trade access, and which now sees its future prospects dimmed in the face of a totally irrational Trump, as Mexico's electorate will undoubtedly shift way to the left (toward the pro-LGBT PRD) in knee-jerk reaction to the hatred and hysteria emanating from the USA.

    Also notice: If Vicente Fox's thoughts on Trump are expressive of the right-wing in Mexico, imagine what the left-wing might have to say. Hint: as a "mild" opening salvo, the words, "jodido y puteado y chingado y perreado," keep re-appearing. Or, in a less passive way, depending on who is doing what to whom, "jodiendo y puteando y chingando y perreando." And for that last one, think of what dogs do.

  • 29. VIRick  |  January 6, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    Chiapas: First Same-Sex Marriage in 2017

    The first same-sex marriage in Chiapas for the new year occurred on 5 January 2017 at 16:00 hours in Office #1 of the Civil Registry in Tuxtla Gutiérrez. It was also the first-ever public same-sex wedding, complete with media, to have taken place anywhere in Chiapas. Overall, from December 2015 to the current date, it was the sixth same-sex marriage to have been performed within the state.

    El Coordinador de la Asociación Unidos Diferentes (UDAC), Ricardo Acero Galindo, stated that within the next several months, there will be at least another 12 same-sex couples who will be married in Chiapas.
    http://aquinoticias.mx/ruby-esmeralda-primer-matr

  • 30. guitaristbl  |  January 7, 2017 at 8:26 am

    My thoughts exactly

  • 31. allan120102  |  January 7, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    Arkansas supreme court will hear a case about lgbt protections. Seeing how they rule in the last case I am almost sure the protections are going to be struck down. Cant believe two years ago they would had vote to strike down the ban but with the new composition of the court it totally change to the worst for our cases. http://www.thv11.com/news/local/arkansas-supreme-

  • 32. VIRick  |  January 7, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    OK, so after running into such wonderful quotes concerning Patrick as being "state Commander-in-Chief of the Latrine Marine," along with having "a weird fixation on other people's genitalia," followed by the mere thought of Patrick "leering at their junk when they pee in the Capitol's restrooms," for two times running now, I've mis-read this:

    "after peering into his 'glittery, bedazzled crystal ball,'"

    and instead, came up with:

    "After peeing into his 'glittery, bedazzled crystal bowl.'"

  • 33. VIRick  |  January 7, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Arkansas Supreme Court to Hear Arguments over LGBT Protections

    Little Rock – Arkansas' highest court will hear arguments next month in a legal battle over whether a city's ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity conflicts with a state law aimed at blocking local protections for gays and lesbians.

    On Wednesday, 4 January 2017, the state Supreme Court announced that it will hold oral arguments on 2 February in the state's appeal of a Washington County judge's decision upholding Fayetteville's anti-discrimination ordinance. The judge last year ruled the ordinance does not run afoul of a state law barring cities and counties from prohibiting discrimination on a basis not contained in state law.

    Arkansas Attorney-General Leslie Rutledge asked the court to strike the ordinance and uphold the state law preventing cities and counties from barring discrimination on a basis not contained in state law. Arkansas' civil rights law doesn't include sexual orientation or gender identity, but supporters of the ordinance have noted other parts of Arkansas law include protections for LGBT people.
    http://www.thv11.com/news/local/arkansas-supreme-

  • 34. VIRick  |  January 7, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    California's Ban on State-Funded Travel to 4 States Now in Effect

    By state law, from 1 January 2017, California‘s ban on non-essential taxpayer-funded travel to four states because of their anti-LGBTQ laws has officially gone into effect. The bill, AB1887, bans travel to Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Kansas, and was authored by gay Assemblyman Evan Low (who is a total hottie). Gov. Jerry Brown had signed the bill into law in September 2016.

    It was inspired by North Carolina’s HB 2, which invalidated non-discrimination ordinances passed by cities throughout the state, and requires transgender individuals to use the bathrooms and locker rooms matching the gender on their birth certificates. A recent repeal effort failed.

    Meanwhile, Mississippi landed on the Golden State’s list with a law allowing businesses to discriminate based on their religious beliefs, Tennessee with one allowing mental health specialists and therapists to also discriminate based on religious beliefs, and Kansas by allowing campus-based religious groups to discriminate against LGBTQ students.
    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/01/californias-ba

    Here's hoping that this California state law has a discretionary add-on clause, so that, if need be, they can include other reactionary states, like Arkansas, within the travel ban, whenever/wherever LGBT rights have been curtailed.

  • 35. VIRick  |  January 7, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    North Carolina – Gov. Cooper in Inaugural Speech Vows to Fight Discrimination

    Raleigh NC— Starting his term amid acrimony with Republicans, North Carolina Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper vowed in his inaugural address on Saturday, 7 January 2017, to “do everything possible to reach consensus” while setting limits and pressing his case to expand Medicaid coverage and getting rid of a law limiting LGBTQ rights.

    Speaking only to a television audience after a larger inauguration ceremony set for Saturday didn’t happen due to the winter storm, Cooper said he wants to lead the way in North Carolina in rebuilding trust in each other and “a government that reflects the priorities of its people.”
    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/01/inaugural-spee

    And then, there's this:

    This Governor Is Defying GOP, Pushing to Expand Medicaid to 600,000 North Carolinians

    North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) says he’ll quickly expand Medicaid in his state before President-elect Donald Trump takes office. His vow sets up a confrontation with Republicans in the state who have explicitly passed a law barring him from making such a move.

    Cooper said Friday, 6 January 2017, that he sent a letter to the Center for Medicaid Services this week requesting the expansion under the Affordable Care Act, which Trump and Republicans in Washington DC have pledged to repeal. The expansion extends Medicaid eligibility to people with incomes up to 138 percent below the federal poverty level. Under the ACA, the federal government would pay for 95 percent of the cost of the expansion and then a little less each year until paying 90 percent in 2020.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/north-carolin

    At the moment, 31 states and DC have expanded Medicaid coverage. North Carolina will finally become state #32. The most-recent previously-added state was Louisiana where newly-elected Gov. John Bel Edwards signed an executive order on 12 January 2016 to expand Medicaid coverage there.

  • 36. scream4ever  |  January 7, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    If we lose, the North Carolina challenge will be successful in federal court and override it.

  • 37. Fortguy  |  January 7, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    Oh, definitely not! John Wright is a journalist who plays for our team. Here is his profile demonstrating his credentials:

    John Wright from The New Civil Rights Movement

  • 38. VIRick  |  January 7, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    Yes! Perfect point.

  • 39. allan120102  |  January 7, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    So I found that the action of unconstitutionality against Aguascalientes civil code was made by the Human rights commision of Aguascalientes and it was to prohibit the state from enforcing its ban against teen marriage. From what I get about this article is that the comission didnt make strong arguments against the ban but if the court strikes the article it may also strike the part that prohibits ssm as marriage have already been ruled by the supreme court to be of two people and not just of opposite sex. The first link bring this but sadly it cannot be translate because of copyright. http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/blogs/2016/12/23/na
    The second article states that the supreme court will soon act on Aguascalientes action of Unconstitutionality . I am hoping the court strike the full article so same sex marriage can be legalized in the state along prohibiting teen marriage. Its in the third paragraph were it mention the court will act soon along other cases. Not sure if first than Chiapas or along it. http://aristeguinoticias.com/0201/mexico/revisara

  • 40. allan120102  |  January 7, 2017 at 10:50 pm

    Honestly I am really confuse now with the info I found ,so it actually looks like the human rights of Aguascalientes want to strike down the absoute prohibition of marrige of people under 18. I am not sure if the court will drink this though this change everything. If the article is not strike that defines marriage in Aguascalientes is not strike by this action ssm will continue to be prohibit.I am doubtful that 8/11 would want to strike the article base on previous rulings finding that marriage before 18 is prohibit.

    In 2017, the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation will have to resolve the Unconstitutionality Action promoted by the State Commission of Human Rights of Aguascalientes due to the absolute prohibition of marriage for persons under 18 years in the civil code of the entity.
    Currently, the Mexican and international legal framework recognizes children and adolescents as holders of human rights, this implies that they are full subjects of rights and not as objects of protection, that is, developing people capable of exercising them according to their development And interests, and not those of their moms, dads or institutions dedicated to the subject. In this sense, it is necessary for the State to guarantee the rights of children and adolescents according to their particular needs and problems, for example, guaranteeing the right to health of adolescents is not to deprive them of any information or services, in Sexual and reproductive health, such as contraceptives or legal and safe abortions, just as she recommended the Committee on the Rights of the Child to Mexico a little more than a year ago.

    In addition to the above, it is important to note that the dispute to be resolved by the Court has to do with access to marriage of adolescents, not girls and boys. The General Law on the Rights of Girls, Boys and Adolescents defines as a teenager the person under the age of 18 but over the age of 12. We are not talking about 8-year-old girls married to lords of 40.
    The contested reform of Aguascalientes, as well as the changes in other states, are due to the need to establish very legitimate measures, such as eradicating harmful practices such as marriage between girls and adults, and to help prevent teenage pregnancy. However, absolutely limiting marriage to older persons does not allow cases of exception to be considered, does not provide any solution for adolescents who, according to their cognitive, evolutionary and maturity development, and their legitimate right and interest To develop their life as a couple decide to do so through the institution of marriage, whether same-sex or heterosexual couples.

    It also means excluding them from the benefits of the legal figure of marriage such as tax benefits, solidarity, because of death of spouse, property, migratory benefits, also restricts the rights to daughters and children born of these relationships, excluding them Of the rights that the filiation implies, such as food, coexistence, patria potestas, custody and custody, right to inherit. There is no doubt that access to these benefits, which in many cases involve the exercise of human rights, would have to be guaranteed regardless of marital status, the problem is that in fact this is not the case, in reality the refusal to marry those Adolescents implies the violation of their human rights. http://www.animalpolitico.com/blogueros-punto-gir

  • 41. theperchybird  |  January 8, 2017 at 1:05 am

    The Faroese LGBT rights group says this extends to the entire Danish Kingdom so it includes the Faroes and Greenland; great news :)

  • 42. theperchybird  |  January 8, 2017 at 1:40 am

    Looks like Portugal may be next in removing trans-related situations from the country's list of disorders and bringing down the gender change age from 18 to 16. They'll also stop surgery on intersex babies.
    http://www.dosmanzanas.com/2017/01/portugal-despa

  • 43. VIRick  |  January 8, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Portugal Will "Depathologize" Transsexuality and Prohibit "Assignmet Surgeries" in Intersex Babies

    Portugal "Despatologizará" la Transexualidad y Prohibirá las “Cirugías de Asignación” en Bebés Intersexuales

    Portugal actualizará su ley de identidad de género, vigente desde 2011, para eliminar la necesidad de un diagnóstico de “trastorno de identidad de género” para proceder al la modificación del sexo registral, así como para reducir de 18 a 16 años el límite de edad a partir de la cual la persona podrá solicitar la modificación. La ley también garantizará que los menores sean tratados en las escuelas de acuerdo a su identidad y prohibirá que los bebés sean sometidos a cirugía para asignarles un sexo u otro. http://www.dosmanzanas.com/2017/01/portugal-despa

    Portugal will update its gender identity law, in force since 2011, to eliminate the need for a diagnosis of "gender identity disorder" before proceeding with the modification of the registered sex, as well as reducing the age limit from 18 to 16, at which time the person may request said modification. The law will also ensure that minors are treated in schools according to their identity, and will prohibit babies from undergoing surgery to assign them one sex or another.

  • 44. VIRick  |  January 8, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    Allan, you're much better than I, as you actually waded through and translated the amazingly extended challenge brought against the state of Aguascalientes, presently pending before Mexico's Supreme Court.

    In passing, you also answered one of my questions. I recently up-dated myself concerning these "Actions of Unconstitutionality" on the website of the CNDH. I found the challenges against both Puebla and Chiapas, but did not find that against Aguascalientes. And that's because, although the CNDH (National Commission on Human Rights) filed the challenges against these other two, it was the CEDH (State Commission) of Aguascalientes which filed the third.

    And they were overly thorough. In summary, and perhaps in reaction to the rather narrow (and unsuccessful) challenge brought by the CNDH against Baja California, the CEDH of Aguascalientes challenged anything and everything. This filing is insanely extended.

    Here's what the Supreme Court has on its docket against Aguascalientes:

    #66 22/2016, Aguascalientes, Pleno
    Determinar la constitucionalidad o inconstitucionalidad de la reforma al artículo 145 del Código Civil de Aguascalientes, que establece la edad mínima de dieciocho años para contraer matrimonio en dicho Estado.

    To determine the constitutionality or unconstitutionality of the reform of Article 145 of the Civil Code of Aguascalientes which establishes the minimum age of 18 in order for one to be able to marry in this State.

    But then, look at all the Articles and fractions of Articles also being challenged. Besides Article 145, I count 46 other Articles, Fractions, or Decrees which they want revoked or abolished:

    III. NORMA GENERAL CUYA INVALIDEZ SE RECLAMA Y MEDIO OFICIAL EN EL QUE SE PUBLICÓ: LA REFORMA AL ARTÍCULO 145 DEL CÓDIGO CIVIL DE AGUASCALIENTES Y EN CONSECUENCIA, LA DEROGACIÓN DE LOS ARTÍCULOS 85, 86, 87, 88, 90 FRACCIÓN II, 95 FRACCIONES II Y IV, 146, 148, 149, 150, 151, 152, 153 FRACCIÓN II, 169, 184, 465 FRACCIÓN II, 473, 521, 647 FRACCIÓN II, 660, 665 Y 667 Y LAS REFORMAS DE LOS ARTÍCULOS 28 FRACCIÓN I, ARTÍCULO 90 FRACCIÓN V, 92, 153 FRACCIÓN I, 168, 179, 231, 287, 435, 457, 460, 464, 495, 663 Y 775 FRACCIÓN I, DEL CÓDIGO CIVIL DEL ESTADO DE AGUASCALIENTES EXPEDIDAS MEDIANTE DECRETO NÚMERO 309 EXPEDIDO POR LA LXII LEGISLATURA DEL CONGRESO DEL ESTADO DE AGUASCALIENTES, Y TAMBIÉN COMO CONSECUENCIA LA DEROGACIÓN DE LOS ARTÍCULOS 138, 260, 261, 262, 263 Y LA REFORMA DEL ARTÍCULO 137 DEL CÓDIGO CIVIL DEL ESTADO DE AGUASCALIENTES EXPEDIDAS MEDIANTE DECRETO NÚMERO 310 EXPEDIDO POR LA LXII LEGISLATURA DEL CONGRESO DEL ESTADO DE AGUASCALIENTES, AMBOS PUBLICADOS EN EL PERIÓDICO OFICIAL DEL ESTADO DE AGUASCALIENTES EL VEINTIDÓS DE FEBRERO DEL AÑO DOS MIL DIECISÉIS EN LA PRIMERA SECCIÓN.”

  • 45. allan120102  |  January 8, 2017 at 10:15 pm

    Italy is really backwards in this topic. Its pretty stupid to be honest.
    Fifteen months ago in California, a surrogate mother gave birth to twin boys. The babies were the sons of a gay Italian couple who had used in vitro fertilisation to have children.
    But when the two men returned to Milan with their newborns, a clerk at the registry office refused to transcribe the babies’ birth certificates, barring the men from registering the boys as their legal children.

    Cases like this have happened before in Italy, where surrogacy is illegal and Italian couples face problems in having babies born to surrogates abroad legally recognised as their own. What’s not common is the decision a court in Milan issued last week: Despite being twins, the court said, the two boys aren’t brothers.

    After the clerk’s refusal, the couple in Milan had sued to be allowed to register as their children’s parents. The couple has decided to remain anonymous to preserve their privacy and the Italian media is not publishing their names.
    It’s the first time that an Italian court has established that a child’s best interest comes before (the legality of) how he or she was born
    Marilena Grassadonia, president of Famiglie Arcobaleno
    http://www.scmp.com/news/world/europe/article/206
    At first a judge ruled against them, but the couple appealed and a new court partially granted their request. Because the men used separate semen samples to fertilise the eggs, the court said that each of them can now register his biological son as his own. But the babies cannot be recognised as children of the couple, nor are they to be considered brothers, even though they share the same genetic mother, who donated both eggs.

    Despite this contradiction, Famiglie Arcobaleno, a nongovernmental organisation advocating the rights of same-sex parents and their children, has hailed the court’s decision as a “positive step.” “It’s the first time that an Italian court has established that a child’s best interest comes before (the legality of) how he or she was born,” the NGO’s president, Marilena Grassadonia,said in a telephone interview. The group has helped the two men in their court case.

    “The children’s interest was to have a parent,” Grassadonia said. “Also, until now the babies were only U.S. citizens, but finally their fathers can pass their Italian citizenship to them.”

    Italy has some of Europe’s strictest reproductive laws. In vitro fertilisation is limited to straight couples who are either married or who can prove they are in a “stable relationship,” and they must use their own eggs and sperm – donating either is also illegal along with surrogacy.

    Although a law approved last year introduced civil partnerships for same-sex couples, they still cannot marry nor adopt. Even stepchild adoption is limited to heterosexual relationships, which also means the two fathers in Milan cannot adopt each other’s child and explains why the babies cannot be considered brothers.

    Surrogacy itself is stigmatised and referred to by the local media by the derogatory term “utero in affitto”, or “womb for rent”. Even after a child is born, there’s no guarantee that its best interests will be more important than adhering to the ban.

  • 46. VIRick  |  January 8, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    Unless the Supreme Court takes all three cases together, the order in which they were filed ought to determine the order in which they will be heard, which is: #66 Aguascalientes first, then #59 Puebla, then Chiapas, of 129 pending cases. The higher the number, the closer they are to being heard.

    The case from Chiapas was originally assigned to the Second Chamber, but on 9 November 2016, that chamber determined to remit this matter to the Full Court (Pleno). Its number would be about #56, but it is not yet listed in the docket for the Full Court (but will be listed there soon). Here's hoping it does not have to start over again at #1.
    http://www2.scjn.gob.mx/ConsultaTematica/PaginasP

    And then, whatever is next, namely, that "Actions of Unconstitutionality" need to have been filed against both Veracruz and Tlaxcala for having changed some portion of their Marriage Code while simultaneously failing to legalize same-sex marriage.

  • 47. allan120102  |  January 8, 2017 at 11:47 pm

    Rick thanks I appreciate it. I also appreciate the effort most in the community do to provide the most truthful information they can about lgbt rights. You are one of best in here, I have a lot of repect to you. Speaking about Aguascalientes I start looking info of the Mexican supreme court and saw many pages listing the most important cases the supreme court would hear in the first 6 months and all of them mention Aguascalientes.
    Seeing that is the one that is the least mention of the 3 action of unconstitutionality the courts has I start looking for info. It was hard but finally I find it. Thankfully you remind me that the human right commision of the state challenge everthing that has marriage on it. Every article and every portion the civil code has that mentions it, so even if the supreme court rules against some of them it will not rule against the one limiting ssm base on past jurisprudence.
    As a recent case from Nayarit that was decided on January 3 where many articles were challenge I think 12 or more about political parties or something. The court went one by one upholding some and striking some. I imagine the court will do the same with Aguascalientes. Seeing as they are 25 or more. I am thinking we will win it.

    In the case of Chiapas Rick I am actually relieve that the second chamber gave it to the whole supreme court(pleno) as only El Pleno can nullify a ban, the 2nd chamber like the 1st may find a law unconstitutional but not nullify a law, that power only El Pleno has it. That is why I find it weird when it was filed and give it to the 2nd chamber. I remember posting a link in here where the case of Chiapas was suppose to be decided on November ,and find it weird that nothing had occur.

    Not sure if Veracruz will be filed as I have not hear anything and I am praying that at least the state human right commision of Tlaxcala challenge the ban if the national human right commision does not do it. I think the clock has start moving.
    Btw I am expecting more states to be challenge soon as I mention in a previous post as many states are expected to modify there civil codes.

  • 48. Rick55845  |  January 9, 2017 at 5:33 am

    The Arkansas case was initially decided by an Arkansas Circuit Court judge and was appealed by the state to the State Supreme Court. I don't believe that a Federal District Court case in North Carolina will have any immediate direct impact on this case in Arkansas. My understanding is that it would take a decision by the US Supreme Court to override the Arkansas Supreme Court.

    Or do I misunderstand something about these cases?

  • 49. allan120102  |  January 9, 2017 at 8:06 am

    It wont affect it.The NC case is even on a different federal appeals court, so unless the SC decide that case it wont have national impact aside of the 4th circuit states. The Arkansas supreme court is the ultimate court in Arkansas so unless the supreme court overturn it , That ruling will be law of the land in Arkansas.

  • 50. scream4ever  |  January 9, 2017 at 8:33 am

    Yes that's true, but I suspect the Supreme Court will hear it as there are other similar laws in other states.

  • 51. theperchybird  |  January 9, 2017 at 11:18 am

    I updated Peru's page for anti-discrimination laws/hate crime legislation and double-checked to see how decrees work; interestingly, it was the right-wing majority in Congress that voted to give the President decree powers back in October to tackle the most contentious non-lgbt issues and he issued the lgbt-inclusive decree just in time. He has those powers until the end of this month. The fighting crime bit came in through the Penal Code which now explicitly includes LGBT.

    —"Peru’s Congress on Thursday (Oct. 1) voted to give President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s government decree powers to enact laws to drive the economy and fight crime.

    The legislature gave Kuczynski’s government 90 days, instead of the requested 120, to fast-track legislation in five areas including the economy, crime, corruption, expanding running-water service and reorganizing state oil firm Petroperu. Every government since the fall of Alberto Fujimori’s dictatorial regime has been granted decree powers to implement its policies at the beginning of its term.

    “I think [90 days] will be enough,” finance minister Alfredo Thorne told Andina after the vote. “In our case, on the economic side, we have most of everything already prepared, although we need to refine some details. But I think we will get it done in 90 days.”

  • 52. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    Peru: Same-Sex Marriages Performed Abroad Must Be Recognized and Registered as Valid in Peru

    (I've run two posts together here, with extraordinary breaking news below)

    We need to continue to keep a close watch on Peru for some additional fast-developing changes, as the new Kuczynski administration, unlike previous administrations, is quite definitely pro-LGBT rights, and is doing a full-time catch-up job to push Peru up to the standard of its immediate neighbors. Constitutionally-speaking (like Venezuela), there is absolutely nothing stopping Peru from legalizing same-sex marriage tomorrow, either through legislation (which the President will sign) or through a ruling from the Constitutional Tribunal.

    The Constitutional Tribunal of Peru has already granted full recognition of transgender rights (comparable to Bolivia), and has recognized the right of couples in same-sex relationships to transfer property to one another. A third recognition case, still pending, involves a married same-sex couple, one of whom is British and the other Peruvian, who were married in the UK, and who now have filed suit to force Peru to recognize their marriage in Peru.

    In the meantime, for the second time in two years, legislation has been introduced into the National Assembly to legalize same-sex civil unions (sponsored by Carlos Bruce and his entire political party). However, civil unions may not be sufficient, as hundreds of couples from Peru have already gotten married in Argentina and Uruguay (in addition to those "civil unioned" in Ecuador and Chile).

    Here's a good site for keeping track of LGBT developments in Peru:
    http://blogdelimagay.blogspot.pe/

    OMG! In checking there, as of today's news, 9 January 2017, a Lima court has just ruled that a same-sex marriage performed in Mexico City between a Mexican citizen and a Peruvian citizen must be recognized by RENIEC (Registro Nacional de Estado Civil).

    So there we have it. Same-sex marriages performed abroad must be recognized and registered as valid in Peru.

  • 53. allan120102  |  January 9, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    Peru courts are using international treaties and prior experiences of other countries to validate this rights. Matrimonio igualitario Peru in twitter is saying this decision is opening the door to thousand of marriages made abroad to have there marriage recognized.
    The court declared the suit filed by the economist against Reniec and the public prosecutor of Reniec to be well founded, ordering the registration of the same-sex marriage in the corresponding civil registry.

    "The sentence issued by the Judiciary is based on international treaties and comparative experiences and what the court has done is to conclude that there were no arguments for not recognizing this marriage, but that not doing so violated, rather, Universal right to equality, "said Alberto de Belaunde, the Peruvian Congressman for the Kambio.

    Alberto de Belaunde welcomed the actions of this court: "Peru is placed in the line of history towards a more egalitarian country, as is happening in other neighboring countries."

    He also expressed his support for the legislative decrees issued by the Executive in recent days, aimed at curbing hate crimes against people because of their sexual orientation.

    Activist Gio Infante also welcomed the ruling:

    "We are facing a historic sentence that not only recognizes the reality of the existence of homosexual marriages of which many Peruvians today are a part, but constitutes a step towards the full legal recognition of homosexual families as such. It is also symbolic that this happens with the marriage of one of the people who founded the MHOL more than 30 years ago. "

    Infante highlighted, in an interview with the website Sin Etiquetas, the contribution of Oscar Ugarteche for equality in Peru:

    "The LTGBI Peruvians owe a debt to Óscar, her husband Fidel Aroche and his lawyer Javier Mujica. This should also make it clear to us that the road to formal equality of rights is legal, not congressional. While our congressmen have presented a proposal of embarrassed civil union that keeps us in the closet, this sentence looks at full equality. "

    He added: "I hope that RENIEC will abide by this judgment and not appeal it, since to appeal it would be to assert itself in a tradition of disregard for our rights and would force us to a longer legal battle, but surely we will win because the law is on our side , On the right side of history. "
    The ruling states that "the claim of the plaintiff is amenable, it is not feasible to suffer any kind of discrimination based on sexual orientation, the defendant violated constitutional rights to equality and free development and well-being."

    The LGBT community hopes Reniec will not appeal the sentence because it is based on international treaties. http://peru21.pe/actualidad/poder-judicial-emitio

  • 54. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Perú: RENIEC Must Recognize/Record Same-Sex Marriage Performed in Mexico

    Perú: Ordenan a RENIEC Reconocer e Inscribir Matrimonio entre Personas del Mismo Sexo Realizada en Mexico

    Resolución judicial del 7º Juzgado Constitucional ordena a RENIEC "reconocer e inscribir" el matrimonio celebrado por Oscar Ugarteche y Fidel Aroche en la Ciudad de México. Ugarteche, fundador del Movimiento Homosexual de Lima en 1982, es un destacado economista y profesor en la Universidad Autónoma de México (UNAM). Su esposo es también economista.

    La sentencia desarrolla en 35 considerandos las razones por las que considera válida la pretensión de Ugarteche de que su matrimonio sea inscrito en le Registro Nacional de Estado Civil.

    "Que, esta Judicatura considera que la razón en la cual se ha fundamentado la denegación del reconocimiento del matrimonio celebrado con el demandante en el extranjero, es por la única razón de que fue celebrado entre personas homosexuales, no constituyendo dicho argumento ser razonable y objetivo, por lo que resulta altamente discriminatorio y contrario tanto a nuestra constitución, como a todos los dispositivos internacionales citados en la presente resolución" se lee en la resolución de primera instancia emitida el pasado 26 de diciembre 2016 y dada a conocer hoy, 9 de enero 2017.

    En el considerando 29 de la sentencia que cita precedentes internacionales, como "Atala Riffo y Niñas v. Chile," resuelto por la Corte Interamericana de Derechos Humanos, y el caso "Obergefell v. Hodges," resuelto por Corte Suprema de los EEUU que legalizó el matrimonio igualitario en ese país, se dice:

    "Que, esta Judicatura considera pertinente recordar que no es factible una oposición de carácter religiosa al reconocimiento de un matrimonio homosexual, puesto que el Perú es un estado laico, es decir, que es neutral en materia de religión por lo que no ejerce apoyo ni oposición, explícita o implícita, a ninguna organización o confesión religiosa; sin perjuicio del respeto que merecen las mismas."

    Y en el considerando 34:

    "Que, tal como se ha podido apreciar, ha quedado demostrado que a la fecha existen cada vez más Estados los cuales están permitiendo y aceptando dentro de su legislación una regulación ya sea del matrimonio homosexual o de alguna otra figura similar, esto en vista de los cambios y exigencias que se han ido presentado en el pasar del tiempo, asimismo ya existe pronunciamientos de la Corte Internacional de Derechos Humanos, referidos a los derechos de las personas homosexuales; razón por la cual esta Judicatura considera que no es acorde a derecho que continúe las vulneraciones de los derechos de las parejas homosexuales."

    Esta sentencia es un importante precedente en lo que se refiere a matrimonios homosexuales contraídos por peruanos o peruanas en el extranjero.
    http://blogdelimagay.blogspot.pe/

    (to continue in English)

  • 55. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    (continued)

    Perú: RENIEC Must Recognize/Record Same-Sex Marriage Performed in Mexico

    A Judgment of the 7th Constitutional Court orders RENIEC to "recognize and register" the marriage celebrated by Oscar Ugarteche and Fidel Aroche in Mexico City. Ugarteche, founder of the Lima Homosexual Movement in 1982, is a distinguished economist and professor at the Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). His husband is also an economist.

    The judgment develops 35 considerations as reasons why Ugarteche's claim that his marriage be registered with RENIEC (National Registry of Civil Status) is valid.

    "This Court considers that the reason upon which the denial of recognition of the marriage concluded with the applicant abroad is based, is solely because it was concluded between same-sex persons, and that argument is not reasonable and objective. So it is highly discriminatory and contrary to both our constitution and all the international provisions cited in this resolution," as stated in the ruling issued on 26 December 2016 and released today, 9 January 2017.

    In consideration 29 of the judgment, it cites international precedents, such as "Atala Riffo y Niñas v. Chile," settled by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, and "Obergefell v. Hodges," settled by the US Supreme Court, which legalized equal marriage in that country, and further states:

    "That this Court considers pertinent to remember that religious opposition to the recognition of same-sex marriage is not feasible, since Perú is a secular state, that is to say, that it is neutral in matters of religion and the reason why it does not exercise support or opposition, explicit or implicit, to any religious organization or denomination, without prejudice to the respect they deserve."

    And in consideration 34:

    "As has been seen, it has been demonstrated that to date there are more and more States which are permitting and accepting within their legislation a regulation of either same-sex marriage or some other similar figure, this in view of the changes and demands that have been presented in the course of time, there are already pronouncements by the International Court of Human Rights referring to the rights of homosexual persons; which is why this Court considers that the continuing violations of the rights of gay couples is not according to law."

    This ruling is an important precedent when it comes to same-sex marriages contracted by Peruvians abroad.

  • 56. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    Some thoughts on the constitutional court ruling, announced today, 9 January 2016, requiring Perú to recognize and record same-sex marriages performed abroad:

    Perú is now in an unusual category, shared only by Israel, the remaining 21 recalcitrant states of Mexico, and the Dutch entities of Curaçao/Sint Maarten, in that they must recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, yet (still) do not allow same-sex couples to marry within their own jurisdictional borders.

    However, for Latin America, at least, this domino effect of forced recognition, through the courts, is the way we will finally win the last of the hyper-conservative jurisdictions. We will be seeing more of this:

    A same-sex couple can not marry at home, and yet are able to do so in the neighboring or near-by country. So, they go there, get married, return home, and then sue for recognition,– and win. An identical case of this nature is already pending before Panamá's Supreme Court, as is another in Romania.

    It is also an important precedent-setting decision. Just as this Court cited "Atala Riffo y Niñas v. Chile" and "Obergefell v. Hodges," other courts in other nations will soon be citing today's ruling in "Ugarteche v. RENIEC." In addition, the Latin nations have reciprocity agreements between themselves to recognize each other's laws. In particular, Argentina and Uruguay have been pushing the others to recognize same-sex marriages performed within those two nations. Today, the Court in Perú listened, and did just that.

    Although today's ruling did not come from Perú's highest court, it still came from a constitutional court at a lower level. There's no need for an appeal. Furthermore, I suspect the new pro-LGBT administration in Perú agrees. The ruling will still have immediate nationwide effect and cover all same-sex marriages performed abroad (whether already performed or performed at some date in the future).

    With this ruling, too, Perú has skipped right past the intermediate prospect of their legislature's legalization of same-sex civil unions.

  • 57. allan120102  |  January 9, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    I agree that most latin American countries are going to get marriage equality through the courts. Peru now looks more likely that even Ecuador in getting marriage equality first. Venezuela and Chile are probably going to get marriage equality this year or at the latest next year. Bolivia looks poised in approving civil unions. The only LA nation in SA that is lagging behind is Paraguay . Central America is moving slowly but I see some of them getting marriage equality in the next 5 years. I am surprise that Cuba still lacks civil unions as PR is the only big Island nation to have marriage equality.
    I guess the courts in Peru may use rulings from other countries in a future case that demands marriage to be perform in the country like they did with this recon case.

  • 58. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 8:07 pm

    Sorry Allan, I re-did my "thoughts" by editing and adding some additional comment, and had not noticed that you had already replied. See immediately below for the expanded post to which your reply is making reference.

  • 59. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    Texas: ACLU Requests Intervention and Stay in "Franciscan Alliance" Case

    Per Equality Case Files:

    In "Franciscan Alliance v. Burwell," the federal case involving assorted states and religiously-affiliated health care providers challenging anti-discrimination provisions in the Affordable Care Act, the ACLU has asked the district court for a ruling on its motion to intervene as defendants, and for a stay of the nationwide preliminary injunction, pending appeal.

    "On 31 December 2016, this Court issued a nationwide preliminary injunction, prohibiting Defendants from enforcing regulatory provisions that prohibit federally-funded healthcare entities from discriminating based on gender identity and termination of pregnancy. The rights of the Proposed Intervenors’ members are now being irreparably impaired pursuant to judicial proceedings in which Proposed Intervenors were denied the right to participate as real parties in interest, or even to have their timely motion to intervene expressly adjudicated.

    "Proposed Intervenors now respectfully request that the Court issue an explicit ruling on intervention, in order to facilitate appellate review. Proposed Intervenors also request that the Court stay its preliminary injunction order pending appeal. If the Court grants the motion to intervene, Proposed Intervenors will file a notice of appeal from the preliminary injunction order. If the Court denies the motion to intervene, Proposed Intervenors will appeal the denial. In the absence of an explicit ruling, Proposed Intervenors will appeal from the constructive denial of intervention and seek appropriate relief through a petition for writ of mandamus. Given the injunction and the harm it imposes on Proposed Intervenors’ members, Proposed Intervenors intend to seek relief from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on 20 January."

    Proposed Intervenors' Motion for Ruling on Intervention and Stay of Preliminary Injunction Pending Appeal is here:
    http://files.eqcf.org/cases/716-cv-00108-63/

  • 60. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    Haters "Help" Gay Polish Couple Gain Permission to Marry in Portugal

    A Polish couple who received death threats on their coming out video are getting a sweet taste of revenge, as their haters have made their dreams of marriage a reality. Polish TV presenter and journalist Jakub KwieciƄski and his partner David have been granted special permission to get married in Madeira, Portugal.

    The couple had tried to get permission to marry on the island but were initially rejected, as the couple lacked the appropriate documents, thus causing the rejection. But that was because Polish authorities had made it difficult for them to obtain the necessary documents. Thus, after facing this unprecedented homophobia, the Portuguese local registry office then re-considered the matter because they were shocked at the couple’s poor treatment by their own government.
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/01/09/haters-helpe

  • 61. VIRick  |  January 9, 2017 at 11:58 pm

    Following today's announcement of the court ruling there, Cristopher García of Perú has tweeted the question-of-the-week:

    ¿Por que será que a tantos cristianos les importa lo que otros hacen con su culo?

    Why is it that so many Christians care so much about what others do with their assh-le?

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