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Equality news round-up: Breaking news, and more

Community/Meta Discrimination Marriage equality Transgender Rights

Texas state seal– The Texas Supreme Court unanimously limited the US Supreme Court’s ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, the same-sex marriage case, by ruling that there’s no right to the benefits of marriage.

– Germany approved a same-sex marriage bill just days after its leader said that there should be an open vote, reversing her former position of opposition to even a vote on the issue. Reportedly, she voted ‘no’ on the bill itself.

– The Kenosha School Board will ask the US Supreme Court to hear a case on whether students should be able to use the correct bathroom if they happen to be transgender. This would give the full Supreme Court a chance to take up the issue they ultimately dismissed in Gloucester County School Board v. GG.

– The Fourth Circuit ruled that North Carolina plaintiffs challenging the state’s marriage performance recusal law lack taxpayer standing to pursue the case.

Thanks to Equality Case Files for these filings

72 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. jpmassar  |  June 30, 2017 at 3:01 pm

    So does anything change in Texas because of that ruling or is everything on hold somehow?

  • 2. scream4ever  |  June 30, 2017 at 3:53 pm

    Nothing changes. It's basically implied that the plaintiffs didn't have standing. Other government officials who have standing may try and sue though.

  • 3. VIRick  |  June 30, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    Germany’s Parliament Votes to Legalize Marriage Equality

    This morning, 30 June 2017, the lower house of Germany’s legislature, the Bundestag, voted to legally recognize marriage between two members of the same sex in a 393 to 226 vote with 4 abstentions.

    The Bundesrat, the upper house, will have to vote on the measure next week and is expected to approve marriage equality, as it has done in the past. Same-sex couples will then be able to marry in Germany before the end of 2017.
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/06/germanys-parl

    Once the Bundesrat has approved this measure, it then has to be signed into law by the German president. The law will go into effect on the first day of the third month from the date of signing. Thus, if signed into law during July, it will go into effect on 1 October 2017. If signed into law in August, it will become effective on 1 November 2017.

  • 4. ianbirmingham  |  June 30, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    Casper, Wyoming Has Its 1st Pride Event, Nearly 2 Decades After Matthew Shepard's Murder
    http://www.newnownext.com/casper-pride/06/2017/

  • 5. VIRick  |  June 30, 2017 at 4:43 pm

    El Salvador: Activists Hold 21st Annual Pride March

    San Salvador, El Salvador — The march that the LGBTI community in El Salvador organized to celebrate diversity within the framework of Pride took place on 24 June 2017 in streets throughout the capital. This year’s theme was “celebrating diversity,” which demonstrated to the entire population that this was a safe space to celebrate diversity. More than 8,000 people — among them lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender and intersex people, alongside families and friends of the LGBTI community and straight allies — attended the 21st annual march.

    Some of them, while they enjoyed the music and dancing, also carried signs and shouted slogans of respect for the LGBTI community’s civil and political rights. The march went from Cuscatlán Market to Salvador del Mundo Square. Participants, among other things, denounced intolerance and human rights violations against the LGBTI community.

    Note: This article in the Washington Blade is fully bi-lingual. The Spanish edition follows the English one.
    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/06/30/el-salv

  • 6. VIRick  |  June 30, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    Texas Supreme Court: Still Not Clear What Rights Same-Sex Couples Have

    Two years after the US Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry, on Friday, 30 June 2017, the Texas Supreme Court suggested in an opinion that it was unclear what rights married same-sex couples have, sending a case over spousal benefits back to a lower court, and effectively starting over a zombie legal dispute from scratch. The Texas case, which is fraught with complex procedural history, has become a football in the cultural war in which religious conservatives have tried to chip away at LGBT rights after the Supreme Court's seemingly definitive constitutional ruling on marriage.

    The lawsuit, filed by two retrograde activists in 2013, attempts to repeal benefits for employees at the City of Houston who are married to a same-sex partner. But Friday's ruling did not decide whether the couples should or should not get those employment benefits. Nor did the Texas court declare that the US Supreme Court's marriage decision should be ignored in the landmark "Obergefell v. Hodges" case.

    Rather, the 24-page opinion says that the retrograde activists behind the lawsuit can continue to help "the courts in fully exploring 'Obergefell’'s reach and ramifications" by arguing their case in a lower court in the context of the "Obergefell" ruling.

    Lawyers for the retrograde activists characterized today's decision as a triumph for their Constitutional right to be free from federal overreach. "This is a huge win for those who believe in upholding the Tenth Amendment and standing for religious liberty," Jared Woodfill, a lawyer for the men, said in an email to BuzzFeed News. "The Texas Supreme Court made it clear that a federal decision is not binding on the state trial court."

    But some LGBT activists dispute the notion that this ruling is inherently consequential. Houston employees are continuing to obtain these benefits, they note. But by keeping the case alive, they say, Texas state court prolongs questions over whether same-sex couples can truly enjoy equal protection under the law. "In the short term, it means there is uncertainty about the fact that this issue has been settled," said Ken Upton, a lawyer for the group Lambda Legal, which filed briefs in the case to support the City of Houston and the rights of same-sex couples "In the long term," he told BuzzFeed News, "I think it just prolongs the inevitable — that married same-sex couples will be treated equally by the government."

    The City of Houston did not reply to a request to comment on what it would do next in the case, though an appeal to the US Supreme Court appears unlikely. Rather, the case may simply begin largely anew, this time with the parties making their arguments that acknowledge developments at the Supreme Court since 2013. Then, the case could percolate up through the courts all over again.
    https://www.buzzfeed.com/dominicholden/texas-supr

    (continued)

  • 7. VIRick  |  June 30, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    Texas Supreme Court Non-Decision (continued)

    The lawsuit was filed four years ago when Jack Pidgeon and Larry Hicks filed their complaint in state district court. They were challenging a policy by former Houston Mayor Annise Parker, a lesbian, who decreed that municipal employees who'd gotten married to a same-sex partner in another state were entitled to equal benefits as straight married employees. Marriage was not yet legal in Texas. While their case wound through state courts, the US Supreme Court issued its national marriage equality ruling in "Obergefell." Although the men's case continued — they won a temporary restraining order in a lower court, the city appealed, the order was suspended, the Supreme Court issued the "Obergefell" ruling, an appeals court applied that decision — it eventually languished. In an effort to revive the dispute, conservative activists and state Republican officials pressured the Texas State Supreme Court to hear the case this year. And when the Texas court ruled today, it noted that that since the lawsuit was first filed in 2013, the US Supreme Court has ruled in "Obergefell." As such, the federal decision had to be factored in from the start — so they sent it back to district court.

    In making their decision, the Texas court argued two other cases are relevant. The first is "Pavan," in which a same-sex couple argued they are entitled to have both parents automatically listed on a child's birth certificate. After losing in state court, the US Supreme Court affirmed their rights by citing "Obergefell." The second case is "Masterpiece Cakeshop," in which a Colorado baker claims his religious objections allowed him to turn away a same-sex couple that wanted a wedding cake. The US Supreme Court agreed on Monday, 26 June 2017, to hear his case.

    Implying the Supreme Court’s actions in those cases are incongruous, the Texas court said, "The [US Supreme] Court’s decision to hear and consider 'Masterpiece Cakeshop' illustrates that neither 'Obergefell' nor 'Pavan' provides the final word on the tangential questions 'Obergefell’'s holdings raise, but 'Obergefell' itself did not address."

    Woodfill, the lawyer for the plaintiffs, said that shows "the Texas Supreme Court made it clear that 'Obergefell' should be limited in its scope." And yet, the court's decision does not say that, exactly.

    "We decline to instruct the trial court how to construe 'Obergefell' on remand," today's opinion said. "We reverse the court of appeals’ judgment, vacate the trial court’s temporary injunction order, and remand this case to the trial court for further proceedings consistent with our judgment and this opinion."

    Some progressive activists have taken this as both the court's rejection of equal benefits for same-sex couples and as a political message. Dan Quinn, a spokesman for the Texas Freedom Network, told BuzzFeed News, "Keeping this Texas case alive is mostly a cynical effort by these justices to pander to pressure groups that insist that state and local governments keep treating LGBT people like second-class citizens or worse.”

    Upton, the lawyer for Lambda Legal, worries the Texas Supreme Court could "open doors for other courts to undermine Obergefell and feel they have license to do so." But for now he sees it as mostly punting the decision and letting the issue linger. “We are, right now, where we were before the first appeals — in front of a trial court and nothing has been decided.”
    https://www.buzzfeed.com/dominicholden/texas-supr

  • 8. ianbirmingham  |  June 30, 2017 at 5:51 pm

    China Bans All Depictions Of Homosexuality, Defining It As "Abnormal Sexual Behavior"
    http://www.whatsonweibo.com/new-rules-online-vide

  • 9. scream4ever  |  June 30, 2017 at 6:11 pm

    But Masterpiece doesn't deal with any of the rights same-sex couples are entitled to through Obergefell, and Pavin explicitly said that Obergefell entitles same-sex couples to all the rights of marriage. Seriously this is why you don't elect judges.

  • 10. VIRick  |  June 30, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    San Pedro Cholula, Puebla: Collective Wedding Ceremony Includes Same-Sex Couples

    Per El Popular:

    Ahora, 30 de junio 2017, realizan boda colectiva en San Pedro Cholula; se casan por la vía civil 327 parejas, incluyendo las diez parejas del mismo sexo que hoy contrajeron matrimonio.

    On 30 June 2017, a collective wedding was held in San Pedro Cholula; 327 couples were married by civil means, including the ten same-sex couples who married today.
    https://twitter.com/diarioelpopular/status/880855

  • 11. Elihu_Bystander  |  July 1, 2017 at 7:01 am

    As anticipated, the Secretary of Defense has delayed the implantation of transgender persons serving openly in military service to their country for six months.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp

  • 12. allan120102  |  July 1, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    Honduras: A man proposed to another man in a mall in SPS. They were capture when the man was proposing to the other and this has caused a conmotion across the country. Every single newspaper have them in their front page. I am happy that this happen because this has caused the topic of same sex marriage to be discussed in almost every family as this was being talk in news, in face, in twitter.Many comments obviously are against but a good quantity are in favor. Hopefully this will continue to be discussed so people can educate thereselves and understand that same sex couples share the same couples as heterosexuals do. http://www.elheraldo.hn/queondaconesto/1085322-46http://www.laprensa.hn/honduras/1085317-410/parej

  • 13. bayareajohn  |  July 1, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    To be clear, they were not "captured" in the sense that they were incarcerated by police or anyone. Their photograph/video was taken and shared… semantics.

  • 14. ianbirmingham  |  July 1, 2017 at 1:02 pm

    Top Dem: Pentagon decision to delay transgender troop enlistment 'outrageous'
    http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/340376

  • 15. Elihu_Bystander  |  July 1, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Not only that, the Secretary released the decision on 1-Jul the last day he could announce the decision before it took effect and on a Saturday! (What less news coverage on a Saturday?)

  • 16. ianbirmingham  |  July 1, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    Breaking Tradition, Trump Refuses To Recognize LGBT Pride Month
    http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/340344

  • 17. ianbirmingham  |  July 1, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Trump Administration Has Been A Disaster For LGBT Americans
    http://www.gq.com/story/trump-vs-lgbt-americans

  • 18. ianbirmingham  |  July 1, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Singapore Gay Pride Rally Draws Thousands
    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-singapore-lgbt-

  • 19. allan120102  |  July 1, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    sorry, I will change the word so people dont get confuse. for some reason I can edit my first comment.

  • 20. allan120102  |  July 1, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    Well looks like I talk to soon. A pastor in Honduras who have a lot of power in here and who is friend of the president says that the gay couple should be arrested for showing amoral situations
    EGUCIGALPA, HONDURAS. – Pastor Alberto Solorzano, said in the afternoon that the gay couple of the City Mall, "must be deduced responsibility."

    Two men participated in the controversial act in the commercial center of San Pedro Sula. However, they could be processed by it. This according to Pastor Solórzano.

    "The constitution forbids it"

    Constitutionally it is defined that any act that promotes amoral situations is prohibited in our society, explained Solórzano.

    In this regard the Honduran religious, called on the authorities to take action in the matter.

    "I believe that the authorities must make a presence in this case and deduce some responsibility," said religious leader Alberto Solórzano.

    In addition, the pastor said that such acts should be handled in private and not try to impose them on society in this way.

    Solórzano also said that it is a shame that these things are happening in the country. "This sets a bad example for society.

    Gay acts are global agenda

    "These acts are a global agenda. These people want to impress the idea on the citizen's mind that this is natural, "said the pastor.

    However, Solórzano stressed that they as a church will always be against these immoral acts.

    "Today I received some grotesque images of the march of gay pride in Spain. They will try to impose their ideas, "he said in religious.

    Honduras: hypocritical society

    On the other hand, the sociologist Karla Aguilar expressed that the Honduran society is of double moral.

    "They say that they love everything, that they are a Christian society. However the mandate to love the neighbor do not apply, "explained the sociologist.

    On the other hand, a part of the Honduran society recognizes that in other countries they are being admitted these rights said Aguilar.

    People, even if they disagree with these kinds of acts, can not say that they are. According to Aguilar because of the fear of seeming obsolete. http://tiempo.hn/pastor-solorzano-pide-proceso-a-

  • 21. VIRick  |  July 1, 2017 at 6:38 pm

    Chile, Perú, and Ecuador: National LGBT Pride Day

    Today, in Chile, with its being National Pride Day, there were LGBT Pride marches all over the country, from Antofagasta in the north to Santiago, the capital, and on to Concepción in the south. In addition, there were also National Pride Marches in both Lima and Quito. All of the following tweets also contained photos taken at the events:

    Per lizanzurda:
    Marcha el Orgullo Gay en Antofagasta.

    Gay Pride March in Antofagasta.

    Per Alexander Aranguíz‏:
    Hoy junto a compañeros progresista en la Marcha por la Igualdad en Santiago.

    Today together with progressive friends at the March for Equality in Santiago.

    Per Valentina Medel Z.‏:
    Orgullo2017 marchando hoy en Concepción por el amor, por la igualdad de derechos!

    Pride 2017 is marching today in Concepción for love, for equal rights!

    Per Arkano Miguel:
    Marcha del Orgullo 2017 en Lima.

    Pride 2017 March in Lima.

    Per MCivil Igualitario (Organización Asiris, Diversidad y Derechos, Ybarra, Ecuador)‏:
    Ibarra presente en Quito apoyando el Matrimonio Igualitario. ¡Viva el Orgullo2017!

    Ibarra is present in Quito helping with Marriage Equality. Long live Pride 2017!

    Per Pamela Troya:
    El selfie de rigor luego de hablar sobre la importancia de la lucha por el Matrimonio Igualitario en Orgullo2017 en Quito.

    A selfie taken after talking about the importance of the struggle for Marriage Equality at Pride2017 in Quito.
    https://twitter.com/hashtag/matrimonioigualitario

  • 22. VIRick  |  July 1, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    Northern Ireland: Thousands March in Belfast to Protest Lack of Same-Sex Marriage

    The LGBT protest march today, 1 July 2017, which attracted tens of thousands of people, set off from Writers’ Square and ended at Belfast City Hall. Protesters held placards protesting the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which has repeatedly used the peace process powers to block same-sex marriage legislation.
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/07/01/thousands-ma

  • 23. Fortguy  |  July 2, 2017 at 1:10 am

    Houston blogger Charles Kuffner has posted summary excerpts from The Texas Tribune and Think Progress regarding the SCOTX decision along with links to other valuable reporting and commentary.

    Charles Kuffner, Off the Kuff: Supreme Court sends same-sex marriage benefits question back to lower court

    Most poignant is his own observation that sums up the issue involved most clearly:

    The only way one can reach this conclusion is if one believes there is such a thing as “gay marriage” and “straight marriage”, and that the two are fundamentally different, with the former deserving less respect than the latter. The only way to begin down the path towards that conclusion is to start from a point of antipathy towards same-sex couples, and more broadly towards LGBTQ people. This is exactly what the SCOTUS decision in Obergefell addressed. Everything about this is so much sophist bullshit. It’s wrong, it’s completely out of touch with public opinion, and it’s shameful in a way that I have a hard time finding words for.

    And, yet, he found some very powerful words for just that.

  • 24. DevilWearsZrada  |  July 2, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    German bigots are attempting the attack on marriage equality that was tried in many European states but failed — they want the constitutional court to declare the recently passed bill unconstitutional, even though the German constitution doesn't define or limit marriage in any way. Why? "But marriage was always meant to be between a man and a woman!" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recognition_of_same

  • 25. scream4ever  |  July 2, 2017 at 2:13 pm

    Not to mention that the ruling blatantly contradicted Obergefell, which explicitly stated that same-sex marriages are to receive all the same rights/benefits of opposite-sex marriages as offered by the state.

  • 26. scream4ever  |  July 2, 2017 at 2:14 pm

    This has been attempted in various jurisdictions and it's never been successful.

  • 27. guitaristbl  |  July 2, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    With Jersey, Alderney and Faroe Islands set to have marriage equality soon enough it only leaves NI and the tiny island of Sark in western Europe at least without ME. With growing pressure and progress in Switzerland, Austria and Liechtenstein Northern Ireland and the DUP will be more and more isolated as time goes by.

  • 28. scream4ever  |  July 2, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    NI may finally get marriage equality if a coalition agreement is worked out with the DUP.

  • 29. Randolph_Finder  |  July 2, 2017 at 5:30 pm

    Liechtenstein will be after all of the others mentioned… The Heriditary Prince is very much against and has veto power. I expect that the only part of Europe west of Vienna to give Marriage Equality after Leichtensten will be the Vatican.

  • 30. Randolph_Finder  |  July 2, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    I thought the veto simply required a specific number of members of the NI parliament on one side or the other of the religious wall…

  • 31. Randolph_Finder  |  July 2, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    Wouldn't be surprised if Sark stays without for a while. OTOH, it might help if there were any Sark natives were currently trying…

  • 32. allan120102  |  July 2, 2017 at 7:33 pm

    Andorra is also another country in Western Europe who doesnt have marriage equality.

  • 33. VIRick  |  July 2, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    Germany: All Muslim Members of Parliament Voted for Marriage Equality

    On 30 June 2017, Germany’s Bundestag, the lower house of parliament, voted in favor of marriage equality in a 393 to 226 vote, with 4 abstentions. The upper house is expected to do the same this coming week.

    Those 393 votes in favor of marriage equality include all 6 of Germany’s Muslim members of parliament. Ekin Deligöz, Omid Nouripour, Cem Özdemir, and Özcan Mutlu of the Green Party, Aydan Özoguz of the Social Democratic Party, and Cemile Giousouf of the Christian Democratic Union confirmed to the German newspaper "Welt" that they identify as Muslim.

    Germany’s far-right party, Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), responded to marriage equality with the same sense of doom that American homophobes are accustomed to using. The front page of their website is a death notice that reads, “In deep sorrow, we say good-bye to the German family, whose constitutional protection was buried by the ‘representatives of the people’ at the German parliament.” The other part of the death notice announces that freedom of speech is dead, because the far-right doesn’t see the difference between not having the final word on a topic and having no say on a topic.

    One of the party’s co-leaders, Alexander Gauland, told the "Bild Zeitung" that the AfD is considering a lawsuit. “We are currently studying a challenge at the constitutional court,” he said, without specifying details about the challenge.
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/07/germanys-musl

    Of the 6 members of the German Parliament who identify as Muslim, at least 4 appear to have Turkish names (the 4 with umlauts over the Os), while one may be of Lebanese background and another could be of Iranian ancestry.

  • 34. VIRick  |  July 2, 2017 at 9:41 pm

    Thank God Trump Never Acknowledged Pride

    The symbolic silence of our "president" stands as one of the rare times he hasn't lied to the American public. Trump's silence confirms once again the whole "LGBT ally" claim is an absolute farce, backed up by nothing but a craven attempt to use the queer community as pawns in his never-ending war against the Islamic religion.
    https://www.advocate.com/commentary/2017/7/01/tha

  • 35. Fortguy  |  July 2, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    Poor Gauland. Perhaps he and his wife will now have to go through couple's therapy now so they can work out why he doesn't value his straight marriage anymore, or why she suddenly looks so manly to him. If the therapist persistently speaks slowly and uses monosyllabic words, maybe someday he can understand that, somehow, the new law will not forbid him from aiming for the hoo-haa instead of requiring him to aim for his wife's taint.

  • 36. VIRick  |  July 2, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    Paraguay: Gay Community Demands Marriage Equality on National Pride Day

    Paraguay: En el Día Nacional de Orgullo, la Comunidad Gay Exige Matrimonio Igualitario

    Miles marcharon para exigirlo al gobierno. Activistas de la comunidad gay exigieron durante una marcha el sábado, 1 de julio 2017, la vigencia del matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo y la inscripción de los enlaces legales realizados en el extranjero en el registro civil estatal paraguayo. Durante la marcha por calles del centro de Asunción no se registraron incidentes, según la policía.

    “En agosto próximo estará listo el proyecto de ley que enviaremos al Parlamento para establecer el matrimonio igualitario”, afirmó Sergio López, uno de los líderes de la organización Somosgay, en entrevista con The Associated Press.

    El activista se quejó además de que la oficina del registro civil, dependiente del Ministerio de Justicia, “rechazó la inscripción mía y de mi cónyuge Simón Cazal, como matrimonio celebrado en la Argentina en 2012”. López y Cazal son el único matrimonio entre hombres paraguayos concretado en la ciudad argentina de Santa Fe.

    La constitución paraguaya señala que el matrimonio debe ser formado entre un hombre y una mujer, por lo que no podría prosperar ningún proyecto de unión civil legal entre personas del mismo sexo en tanto esa norma no sea modificada o anulada.
    https://www.metro.pr/pr/noticias/2017/07/01/comun

    Thousands marched to demand it from government. During a march on Saturday, 1 July 2017, activists from the gay community demanded the validity of same-sex marriage and that legal marriages performed abroad be recorded in the Paraguayan state civil registry. According to police, there were no incidents during the march through the streets of downtown Asunción.

    "The bill that we will send to Parliament to establish marriage equality will be ready this August," said Sergio López, one of the leaders of the organization, Somosgay, in an interview with The Associated Press.

    The activist also complained that the civil registry office, under the Ministry of Justice, "rejected me and my spouse, Simón Cazal, as to our requested registration of our marriage held in Argentina in 2012." The marriage between López and Cazal is the only one between Paraguayan men to be completed in the Argentine city of Santa Fe.

    The Paraguayan constitution states that marriage must be formed between a man and a woman, so that any prospect for legal civil unions between persons of the same sex could not occur until such provision is modified or annulled.

    Note: On Saturday, 1 July 2017, there was also a massive LGBT Rights March through the center of Caracas, Venezuela.

    And in "other" news in Paraguay, we have this idiocy:

    Trump Publica Video donde Simula Golpear a CNN

    Trump Publishes Video where He Simulates Hitting CNN.

    Notice that they did not identify him by his title, his position, or his nationality. Just Trump. And since CNN en Español is all over Latin America, those initials are understood.

  • 37. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    Gay-Organized Trump Rally Draws Just 18 Attendees

    A total of just 18 people turned out on Saturday, 1 July 2017, for a Make America Great Again Free Speech Rally on the Ellipse section of the National Mall near the White House that was organized by Gays for Trump President, Peter Boykin. Boykin and several others who spoke at the rally said they were certain that each of those attending the event represents thousands of others, both gay and straight, who are conservative, loyal Americans that deeply believe Donald Trump will provide the leadership needed to get the nation back on track.

    “Make American Great Again is not just a political slogan,” Boykin told the gathering. ”It’s an American one which has been shared by many great people in this nation no matter what their race, gender, or sexual orientation.” Boykin and others who helped organize the event promoted it as a nonpartisan rally for free speech but made it known that most of those expected to speak would be Trump supporters, although others would be welcome to speak. As it turned out, only Trump supporters spoke at the event.
    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2017/07/03/make-am

  • 38. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    Bolivia Approves Marriage Equality for Trans Persons

    Aprueban Matrimonio Igualitario para Personas Trans en Bolivia

    (English translation is in the following post)

    Bolivia confirmó la sentencia del Tribunal Supremo Electoral (TSE), en cuyo contenido se señala que pueden contraer matrimonio civil las personas transgénero y transexuales que hayan tramitado el cambio de identidad en sus documentos personales bajo el amparo de la Ley de Identidad de Género, vigente en la nación andina desde mayo de 2016. El pasado jueves 29 de junio 2017, la presidenta del TSE, Katia Uriona, indicó que se emitió un instructivo al Servicio de Registro Civil (Sereci) para permitir que las personas trans puedan casarse presentando su certificado de nacimiento, cédula de identidad y certificado de soltería, como establece la normatividad vigente.

    Según Uriona, el instructivo “tiene carácter administrativo” y se basa en la Ley de Identidad de Género, que permite a estas personas cambiar en documentos oficiales su identidad, sexo, e imagen. La jueza indicó que con esta medida, se garantizan los derechos establecidos en la Constitución, aunque recalcó que esto no significa la modificación del texto constitucional, el cual define al matrimonio como la unión entre un hombre y una mujer, sino únicamente el respeto a una norma vigente en la materia del reconocimiento de los derechos de las personas transgénero y transexuales. “El Órgano Electoral no tiene facultad interpretativa de las leyes, lo que hace es implementar lo que la ley le faculta en términos de su responsabilidad”, agregó.

    La Ley de Identidad de Género boliviana establece que las personas transexuales son quienes han construido su género contrario al sexo asignado al nacer recurriendo a alguna intervención médica, mientras que las transgénero son las personas que cambian su identidad de género sin recurrir a transformaciones corporales. En diciembre pasado, se registró el primer matrimonio civil de una mujer transexual, al amparo de la norma que le permitió cambiar de sexo en sus documentos personales.

    Entretanto, desde octubre pasado, en el Congreso boliviano se debate una propuesta de suspensión de la Ley de Identidad de Género, y en el Tribunal Constitucional se resuelve una controversia acerca de si esta normativa permitirá a las personas transgénero, transexuales, lesbianas y gays la posibilidad de casarse y adoptar hijos.
    http://www.letraese.org.mx/aprueban-matrimonio-ig

    (continued)

  • 39. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    (continued)

    Bolivia confirmed the decision of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), in which it is stated that transgenders and transsexuals who have processed the identity of their personal documents can contract marriage under civil law according to the Gender Identity Law in force in the Andean nation since May 2016. On Thursday, 29 June 2017, TSE President Katia Uriona indicated that an instruction was issued to the Civil Registry Service (Sereci) to allow trans persons to marry by presenting their birth certificate, identity card, and single certificate, as established by current regulations.

    According to Uriona, the instructions "are administrative" and are based on the Law of Gender Identity, which allows these people to change their identity, gender, and image in official documents. The judge indicated that this measure guarantees the rights established in the Constitution, but stressed that this does not mean the amendment of the constitutional text, which defines marriage as the union between a man and a woman, but only respect for a law in force in the field of recognition of the rights of transsexual and transgender persons. "The Electoral Tribunal has no interpretive power of the laws; what it does is to implement what the law empowers in terms of its responsibility," she added.

    The Bolivian Gender Identity Law establishes that transsexual people are the ones who have constructed their gender contrary to the sex assigned at birth by resorting to some medical intervention, while transgender people are the ones who change their gender identity without resorting to corporal transformations. Last December, the first civil marriage of a transsexual woman was registered, under the rule that allowed her to change sex in her personal documents.

    In the meantime, since October 2016, a proposal to suspend the Gender Identity Law has been debated in the Bolivian Congress. The Constitutional Court resolved the dispute over whether this legislation will allow transgenders, transsexuals, lesbians, and gays the possibility of marrying and adopting children.

  • 40. ianbirmingham  |  July 3, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    Justice Kennedy Tells October 2018 Clerkship Applicants He’s Considering Retirement, Right Before 2018 Midterms http://electionlawblog.org/?p=93506

  • 41. scream4ever  |  July 3, 2017 at 5:44 pm

    I'm amazed this was leaked. Something tells me it's not true.

  • 42. ianbirmingham  |  July 3, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Source is Nina Totenberg of NPR. It's true.

  • 43. scream4ever  |  July 3, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    Right but where did she get it from is what I'm saying.

  • 44. ianbirmingham  |  July 3, 2017 at 6:00 pm

    Multiple interviewed applicants for Kennedy clerkships would have to have confirmed to her that Kennedy told them that. Totenberg has covered SCOTUS for NPR for decades now. If she says it, it's true.

  • 45. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 7:13 pm

    Panamá: LGBT Pride March, 1 July 2017, with First Lady as Head

    Per Rex Wockner:

    Primera Dama, Lorena Castillo, reitera llamado a la Cero Discriminación durante el Festival Panamá LGBT, La Suma de Todos.

    First Lady, Lorena Castillo, reiterates a call for Zero Discrimination during the Panamá LGBT Festival, The Sum of All.

    The complete official dispatch, dated 1 July 2017, from Primera Dama de Panamá, including videos and photos, is here:
    https://www.despachoprimeradama.gob.pa/noticias/P

    Another video is here:
    https://twitter.com/PrimeraDamaPma/status/8814956

    And here's a photo during the march, taken by the Chilean ambassador to Panamá, Francisco Cruz F., accompanying the First Lady, Lorena Castillo, and the mayor of la Ciudad de Panamá:
    https://twitter.com/F_Cruz_F/status/8812750660461

    It is so refreshing to encounter a First Lady so actively engaged politically in progressive social issues.

    Also, from what I have been able to gather, there were co-ordinated, national LGBT Pride Marches and celebrations all over South America, all on the same date, 1 July 2017, apparently timed to match with the massive World Pride march in Madrid. So far, I have encountered information that such national LGBT Pride marches occurred in Panamá, Venezuela, Ecuador, Perú, Chile, and Paraguay.

  • 46. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    Germany: Bundesrat Schedules Marriage Equality Vote

    Per Rex Wockner:

    Germany's marriage equality bill now moves to the upper house, the Bundesrat, where it will pass on Friday, 7 July 2017, as only one of Germany's 16 states opposes it.

  • 47. allan120102  |  July 3, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    I am worried because if its true then we are in big trouble because I am almost sure republicans will still have control of the senate. We might win the house in 2018 but not the senate, and with just a majority of senators need it to confirm a supreme court justice we will need to have luck.

    I hope Kennedy think it really well before retiring because its legacy of lgbt rights might come to an end with his successor.

  • 48. ianbirmingham  |  July 3, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    We will not have luck. Either we take the Senate, or we get Trumped.

  • 49. theperchybird  |  July 3, 2017 at 9:13 pm

    Island news:

    Faroe Islands' marriage law went into effect July 1st. Looking for photos (favorite part of lgbt progress).

    Guernsey's first wedding is scheduled for the 14th.

  • 50. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 11:04 pm

    Seriously, for future reference, how are we to count Bolivia on the subject of marriage equality? They've done things differently there, allowing transgenders and transsexuals to marry someone of the same biological sex, but have not extended the same right to gays and lesbians, a point just re-affirmed by their highest court.

    Although Perú appears to be headed in the same general direction, no other country anywhere else in the world has done what the Bolivian court just decided.

  • 51. scream4ever  |  July 3, 2017 at 11:31 pm

    If Kennedy is serious and it's indeed true, I hope that he gives Trump an ultimatum to appoint a successor of similar mold to himself, or else he won't retire. I think it may be happening behind the scenes if he indeed mentioned it to applicants and has allowed it to go public. Sure, it may be a blurring of the branches of government, but drastic times call for drastic measures.

    Here's what I think will happen; Kennedy will "change his mind" at the end of the 2018 term, and the issue will become a major point of the 2018 midterms. I firmly believe he is well aware of what could happen if he retires.

    I will say this, if Trump appoints another Goursch to the court, I think Roberts may make a shift to the left. He does seem to care about the integrity of the court and precedents that have already been set.

  • 52. scream4ever  |  July 3, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    Bolivia bans same-sex marriage in their constitution unfortunately.

  • 53. VIRick  |  July 3, 2017 at 11:59 pm

    "Roberts may make a shift to the left. He does seem to care about the integrity of the court and precedents that have already been set."

    Yes, Roberts is keenly aware as to the "legacy" of his court, and wants to preserve the integrity of that legacy. That could well require him to shift somewhat more to the left.

    By the way, I like that name, as Goursch seems to be quite apropos.

  • 54. scream4ever  |  July 4, 2017 at 12:12 am

    Indeed. His decision to uphold the ACA and to join the majority in Pavin v Smith are indicators of that.

  • 55. allan120102  |  July 4, 2017 at 5:15 am

    You are forgeting that Kennedy is a republican. He might be friendly to lgbt rights but still a republican. Democrats retaking the senate looks grim at this point but we will see.

  • 56. allan120102  |  July 4, 2017 at 5:52 am

    Breaking. Oaxaca
    First same sex marriage without the need of an amparo has occur on the state. Not sure if this is an isolate case or if the government will surrender as Chihuahua did. Or maybe some municipalities will perform might other not
    Like in Queretaro. http://www.nvinoticias.com/nota/63189/realizan-en

  • 57. allan120102  |  July 4, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    Malta to vote on the same sex marriage bill tomorrow. http://www.independent.com.mt/articles/2017-07-04

  • 58. VIRick  |  July 4, 2017 at 7:58 pm

    China: Gay Man Wins Suit against Hospital for Forced Conversion Therapy

    A court in China has awarded a gay man financial compensation and required a mental hospital to apologize for making him undergo conversion therapy. Activists are hailing the ruling as the first such victory in a country where the LGBTQ rights movement is gradually emerging from the fringes.

    The wife and relatives of the 38-year-old man, identified only by his surname, Yu, forcibly admitted him to the hospital in the town of Zhumadian in Henan province in 2015. Doctors diagnosed him with “sexual preference disorder,” according to court documents obtained by the Associated Press. He was forced to take medicine and receive injections over 19 days, before finally walking free.

    The court found that forcing him into a mental institution, given that he did not pose a danger, infringed upon his rights. Last month, it ordered the hospital to publish a public apology in local newspapers and pay the man the equivalent of $735. However, the court did not rule on whether the practice of so-called “ex-gay” or conversion therapy was legal or ethical. Homosexuality was considered a mental disorder in China until 2001.
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/07/gay-man-sues-

  • 59. VIRick  |  July 4, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    Perú Pride Was Joyful in July as Thousands Marched through Streets of Lima

    Here's a video showing a portion of the march which occurred on 1 July 2017:
    https://www.advocate.com/pride/2017/7/03/peru-pri

    A note concerning the heavy coats: Remember that the weather in South America in July corresponds with weather in January in the northern hemisphere.

  • 60. VIRick  |  July 4, 2017 at 9:00 pm

    Malta: Parliament to Vote on Marriage Equality

    To properly summarize this article in the "Malta Independent" may require some prior knowledge of local party politics. Following the recent elections, the Prime Minister's Labour Party obtained a clear majority in parliament, is definitely in favor of marriage equality, and will vote accordingly,– period. But then, officially, so will the opposition Nationalist Party (PN), which at the moment, is also committed to voting in a bloc in favor of marriage equality. However, some opposition PN members are pushing for a "free vote," apparently so they can individually vote against the measure.

    This article focused most of its attention on this handful of opposition "hold-outs" who are a distinct minority of the minority party, railing against the gender-neutral terms employed in the language of the bill. Instead, the main point of the news article should have been the following fact which was saved for the very last sentence:

    "The vote on the gay marriage bill will be taken tomorrow, Wednesday, 5 July 2017."
    http://www.independent.com.mt/articles/2017-07-04

  • 61. ianbirmingham  |  July 4, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    All Hell Breaks Loose As 2 Women Wed In Bengaluru [India]
    http://mumbaimirror.indiatimes.com/news/india/all

  • 62. ianbirmingham  |  July 4, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Meet The Gay Man Who Won America Her Independence
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/07/meet-gay-man-

    If George Washington was the father of the nation, then von Steuben, a gay man, was the father of the United States military.

    This article should be required reading in the boot camps of all branches of the US military!

  • 63. davepCA  |  July 4, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    Fascinating!

  • 64. VIRick  |  July 4, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    Oaxaca: First Gay Wedding without Amparo Judgment

    Realizan en Oaxaca Primera Boda Gay sin Juicio de Amparo

    El Registro Civil de Oaxaca realizó este fin de semana el primer matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo sin la necesidad de un juicio de amparo de por medio, indicó Yoshio Ramírez, defensor de los derechos de la comunidad Lésbico, Gay, Bisexual, Transexual, Travesti, e Intersexual (LGBTTI) en Oaxaca. El activista formó parte del grupo de personas que en 2012 iniciaron la batalla legal para que se permitiera que las personas del mismo sexo pudieran contraer matrimonio en el estado, entidad en donde hasta este momento no se ha modificado el Código Civil.

    El sábado, 1 de julio 2017, el activista contrajo matrimonio civil sin el amparo requerido, sino a través de la jurisprudencia. El hecho fue celebrado de manera pública con un recorrido sobre el andador turístico, Macedonio Alcalá, acompañado con el tradicional convite.
    http://www.nvinoticias.com/nota/63189/realizan-en

    This past weekend, the Civil Registry of Oaxaca had its first marriage of a same-sex couple without the need for an amparo judgment, said Yoshio Ramírez, advocate for the rights of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Transgender, and Intersexual (LGBTTI) community in Oaxaca. The activist was part of the group of people who in 2012 started the legal battle to allow same-sex couples to get married in the state, an entity where until now the Civil Code has not been modified.

    On Saturday, 1 July 2017, said activist contracted civil marriage without the required amparo, but rather, through jurisprudence. The event was celebrated publicly with a "recorrido" along the tourist walkway, Macedonio Alcalá, accompanied by the traditional invitees.

    I can not properly translate the word, "recorrido," as I can only feel it, along with the flood of memories that accompany my former participation in so many "recorridos" in all the various places I have lived in Mexico, as only true Mexicans can do a proper "recorrido." The English word, "stroll," does not do it justice, but is similar. However, a "recorrido" requires total community participation, and an understanding of one's individual role within it. All the females slowly stroll around the public square or open space in a clockwise direction, while all the young and not-so-young men saunter around the same square, on the outer edge, in a counter-clockwise direction, eyeing all the young ladies as they slowly pass by in the opposite direction. All the abuelas sit on the near-by park benches keeping watch over the proceedings, while the abuelos play bocce ball or chess or whatever.

    So, this same-sex couple publicly celebrated their marriage with a "recorrido," complete with the entire traditional wedding party (along with about half of the city's population, all out for a "stroll"). However, perhaps most importantly for Oaxaca, this was the marriage ceremony for Yoshio Ramírez himself and his partner, with Yoshio being a long-term marriage equality activist. The authorities did not dare say "No." Instead, notice that they cited "jurisprudence" in allowing the marriage to proceed. Hopefully, Oaxaca will continue to cite "jurisprudence" for all subsequent same-sex couples wishing to marry.

    We're also discussing Oaxaca, Oaxaca, as the capital city and its state have the same name. To me, it's not completely clear as to whether the Civil Registry in question is that for the city or for the state, but the ceremony itself took place in the city.

  • 65. ianbirmingham  |  July 4, 2017 at 11:57 pm

    110-Million-Member Chinese Youth Communist Group Slams Gay Internet Ban
    https://www.gaystarnews.com/article/chinese-youth

  • 66. VIRick  |  July 5, 2017 at 12:05 am

    East Timor: First LGBT Pride Parade and Call for LGBT Rights

    East Timor (Timor Leste), a former Portuguese colonial possession which had been invaded and annexed by Indonesia, and which only declared its independence in 2002 (from both) after a traumatic, deadly struggle (with Indonesia), held its first Pride parade last week. The celebration in the capital city of Dili was attended by several hundred people, according to The Associated Press.

    In the same week, Prime Minister Rui Maria de Araujo called on his citizens to accept differences and even to celebrate them. In a speech posted online, he said: “Discrimination, disrespect, and abuse towards people because of their sexual orientation or gender identity does not provide any benefit to our nation.”

    Allowing everyone in the country to contribute to its development would “make the most of the independence we all fought for.” The leader said that his country was “known in the region and internationally as a nation which promotes and protects human rights. However, many people still suffer discrimination.” He warned that “violence and discrimination may affect the future of the country’s physical and mental health.”

    In a developed country, he said, “all children need to live in an environment which provides protection, love, and the opportunity to develop themselves regardless of their differences. Parents need to receive their children, and schools need to create conditions which can protect all students. As Prime Minister, I ask you to accept each other, to see each other, and have mutual respect."
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/07/04/tiny-war-tor

  • 67. VIRick  |  July 5, 2017 at 12:33 am

    Iraq: Actor Kidnapped, Tortured, Killed ‘for Looking Gay’

    A young Iraqi actor has been tortured and murdered after being targeted for his effeminate appearance. Karar Noshi was a graduate of Baghdad University’s College of Fine Arts who worked at a theatre in the capital. On 3 July 2017, he was found dead on Palestine Street, a busy road in the center of the city. He had reportedly been planning to take part in a male beauty pageant.

    Noshi had previously received death threats because of his unusual hairstyle and taste in fashion, Kurdistan24 has reported. Witnesses told the news outlet that Noshi’s corpse showed signs of torture and stab wounds. His family confirmed his death shortly after the body was discovered.

    Reports indicate that Noshi was aware of the threats against him, but had no intention of backing down from expressing himself in the way he chose. He said he embodied “every young man fighting with all his honor to defend the nation.” His pictures, he said, were “theatrical and cinematic works of art, which I pride myself on. I cherish my personal freedom to build a unique external appearance. I remain silent about the abusive responses that undoubtedly reflect the level of their writers,” he added.

    His fans adored his stance and appearance, calling him Iraq’s “beauty king." Pictures of his dead body have been circulated online by those outraged by his murder. Nevertheless, no-one has yet been arrested.
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/07/04/iraqi-actor-

  • 68. VIRick  |  July 5, 2017 at 1:01 am

    "Both North and Walker are featured in the statue of von Steuben in Lafayette Park across from the White House."

    Indeed! I just checked out that statuary a few days ago, directly in front of the White House, across Pennsylvania Avenue, and the ménage-a-trois is quite obvious.

  • 69. theperchybird  |  July 5, 2017 at 7:16 am

    Today is Malta's second reading which is basically a reveal of how each MP will vote. The debate is not over, but so far 1 has announced he will break his party's position and vote against.

    Here is the wrap up for the day that is going to be updated with each MPs statements, the debate will continue in a few hours and end at 3PM NYC time.
    https://www.gaymalta.com/single-post/2017/07/05/L

    After the 2nd reading comes the committee stage that finalizes the articles then it goes to the plenary for a final vote. Malta's lead LGBT rights group gives this summary of the process:

    Today will mark the end of the second reading which involves a vote on the bill and determines whether the bill will eventually be enacted. This will be followed by the committee stage where the text of the bill will be finalised. The final stage is the third reading where the bill is passed. No celebration has been envisaged for tonight. Organised events generally require the issuing of a permit which needs to be requested a number of days before. Of course today's vote is still cause for celebration as it is another important step forward in the process of getting #MarriageEquality enacted.

    CNN is reporting that the final vote is scheduled for tomorrow. Seems they beat Germany by a hair; the Germans just need that formality of the other chamber of states voting in favor which is scheduled for Friday.

  • 70. SethInMaryland  |  July 5, 2017 at 7:56 am

    So wait will their be a final vote today?

  • 71. theperchybird  |  July 5, 2017 at 8:00 am

    Only Second Reading today which just shows a tally of Yes/No and usually the future Final Reading is just a mirror of that number. If CNN is right, the final vote comes Thursday.

    Although, today is a cause for celebration as it is the major hurdle to cross and every MP would have already expressed their opinion on the idea of same-sex marriage. The bill is slated to easily pass even if the entire center-right said no which is not the case since many of them are in favor. It will be a landslide victory for the marriage bill.

  • 72. theperchybird  |  July 5, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    Only 1 MP voted against. The rest of the center-right said they would vote in favor (some begrudgingly because they don't like that gender-neutral terms will replace current laws) and some said even if their amendments are not approved in the amendment stage that will happen tomorrow they will still vote Yes. The final vote is next Wednesday and if they can get that lone dissenter to switch then it will be unanimous.

    Woohoo, Malta!

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