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Open thread 10/16

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This is an open thread. We’ll post any breaking news.

UPDATE 10/17:: The DC Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments in one of the challenges to the military’s ban on transgender servicemembers on December 10. The case involves the government’s attempt to dissolve the preliminary injunction blocking the ban:

Thanks to Equality Case Files for these filings

32 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. VIRick  |  October 16, 2018 at 9:53 pm

    Ecuador: Another Court Win, This Time for Gender Identity; Civil Registry Appeals

    Per Silvia Buendía y la Red LGBTI del Azuay:

    Hoy día, el 16 de octubre 2018, el litigio estratégico LGBTI consigue otra victoria más, pero el Registro Civil del Ecuador nuevamente insiste en seguir vulnerando derechos humanos, esta vez, los derechos de una niña de 9 años, Amada. https://twitter.com/silvitabuendia

    Today, 16 October 2018, LGBTI strategic litigation achieves yet another victory, but the Civil Registry of Ecuador once again insists on continuing to violate human rights, this time, the rights of a 9-year-old girl, Amada.

    Per La Fundación Pakta:

    El día de hoy, el Dr. Jorge Washington Duarte Estévez, juez de la Familia, Mujer, Niñez, y Adolescencia, con sede en la parroquia Calderón del Distrito Metropolitano de Quito, aceptó la Acción de Protección solicitada por la niña Amada y sus padres con el objetivo de cambiar el dato sexo y el nombre en su cédula de identidad, mismos que concuerden con la identidad de género autopercibida de la niña.

    Por otro lado, lamentamos que el Registro Civil siga manteniendo su posición contraria a los derechos de la población LGBTI, debido a que en la audiencia de hoy, apeló la decisión del juez Duarte, dilatando así el proceso judicial. https://www.facebook.com/notes/fundación-p….

    Today, Dr. Jorge Washington Duarte Estévez, judge of the Family, Women, Children, and Adolescents Court, in Calderón parish within the Metropolitan District of Quito, accepted the Acción de Protección requested by the little girl Amada and her parents with the objective of changing the sex data and her name on her identity card to match the self-perceived gender identity of the girl.

    On the other hand, we regret that the Civil Registry continues to maintain its position contrary to the rights of the LGBTI population, because in the hearing today, they appealed the decision of Judge Duarte, thus delaying the judicial process.

    La Fundación Pakta was the lead counsel litigating for the little girl and her parents.

  • 2. VIRick  |  October 16, 2018 at 9:55 pm

    Chihuahua: Federal Appeals Court Evaluating Issuing Contempt Order against State Congress

    Por omisión legislativa, el Juzgado evalúa ordenar a Congreso incluir matrimonio igualitario en el Código Civil. Si legisladores no acataran la sentencia, se podría solicitar su destitución por desacato.

    Tras el amparo 172/2018, presentado por Mercedes Fernández e Yndira Sandoval, en el cual reclaman omisión legislativa del Congreso del Estado de Chihuahua, de éste derivó la queja 52/2018 del Segundo Tribunal Colegiado en Materias Civil y del Trabajo del Décimo Séptimo Circuito el cual admitió la queja y se declaró competente para resolverla; ahora evalúa ordenar a la presente legislatura modificar el artículo 134 del Código Civil para incluir el matrimonio igualitario.

    En marzo de 2018 se presentó un amparo ante el Juzgado 10 de Distrito para reclamar la omisión legislativa del Congreso del Estado de Chihuahua, pues tras 8 años de emitida la jurisprudencia de la Suprema Corte de Justicia para reconocer el derecho de parejas del mismo sexo para contraer matrimonio, el legislativo local no ha realizado la armonización del Artículo 134 del Código Civil, que regula la materia en el estado. Actualmente este Artículo 134, dice que el matrimonio es el acuerdo de voluntades entre un hombre y una mujer para realizar la comunidad de vida, por lo que el amparo solicitado por Mercedes e Yndira pide se cambie el texto que dice: “hombre y mujer,” por el de “dos personas,” dando cabida así a las parejas del mismo sexo y eliminando la discriminación actualmente existente. El amparo 172/2018 también solicita la declaratoria de inconstitucionalidad de dicho Artículo 134, así como la derogación del Artículo 135, el cual elimina la posibilidad de que alguna persona exprese su deseo de no tener descendientes en el matrimonio.
    http://difusionnorte.com/matrimonio-igualitario-o….

    By legislative omission, the Court is evaluating to order Congress to include marriage equality in the Civil code. If legislators do not abide by the ruling, their dismissal for contempt could be requested.

    After amparo 172/2018, presented by Mercedes Fernández and Yndira Sandoval, in which they claim legislative omission by the State Congress of Chihuahua, one derived from complaint 52/2018 of the Second Collegiate Court for Civil and Labor Matters of the Seventeenth Circuit which has accepted the complaint and has declared itself competent to resolve it; and now is evaluating to order this legislature to amend Article 134 of the Civil code to include marriage equality.

    In March 2018, an amparo was filed with District Court 10 to claim legislative omission by the State Congress of Chihuahua, since after 8 years of jurisprudence issued by the Supreme Court of Justice to recognize the right of same-sex couples to contract marriage, the local legislature has not harmonized Article 134 of the Civil Code, which regulates the matter in the state. Currently, Article 134 says that marriage is the agreement between a man and a woman to share a communal life, so that the amparo requested by Mercedes and Yndira asks to change the text that says: "man and woman," to that of "two people," thereby accommodating same-sex couples and eliminating existing discrimination. Amparo 172/2018 also requests the declaration of unconstitutionality of said Article 134, as well as the repeal of Article 135, which eliminates the possibility of someone expressing their desire to not have descendants in the marriage.

    Note: In Mexico, los Tribunales Colegiados (Federal Appeals Courts) are the ones who declare jurisprudence against unconstitutional state laws, and who can thus hold obfuscators/violators in contempt. That is where we are now in Chihuahua.

  • 3. VIRick  |  October 16, 2018 at 9:58 pm

    Kansas: Federal Suit Filed against State over Regressive Birth Certificate Policy

    Per Equality Case Files:

    Today, 15 October 2018, in "Foster v. Andersen," Lambda Legal filed a federal lawsuit challenging Kansas’s refusal to correct the gender marker on Kansas birth certificates for transgender individuals. Kansas is one of just three remaining states, along with Tennessee and Ohio, which has yet to change this extremely regressive and outdated policy.

    Lambda Legal filed the lawsuit in the US District Court for the District of Kansas on behalf of Luc Bensimon and three other transgender individuals born in Kansas, Nyla Foster, Jessica Hicklin, and a client identified by his initials as C.K. The lawsuit also has one organizational plaintiff, Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project, Inc. (K-STEP).

    In the lawsuit, "Foster v. Andersen," Lambda Legal argues that denying transgender people in Kansas the ability to obtain accurate birth certificates violates the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the US Constitution. The lawsuit also argues that forcing transgender individuals through their birth certificates to identify with a sex that is not who they are violates their free speech rights under the First Amendment. In addition, the lawsuit argues that this policy stands in stark contrast with Kansas’s own policy permitting correction of the gender marker on drivers’ licenses and on state identification cards.

    Handling the case on behalf of Lambda Legal are Senior Attorney Omar González-Pagán and Law Fellow Attorney Kara Ingelhart. They are joined by pro-bono co-counsel Jim Lawrence, Katherine Keating, and Sarah Holdmeyer of Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP.

    The case has been assigned to Judge Daniel D. Crabtree with referrals to Magistrate Judge Kenneth G. Gale.
    https://www.lambdalegal.org/blog/ll-sues-kansas-o….

    The same regressive birth certificate policy was overturned in federal court in both Idaho and Puerto Rico within the past year. Another such suit, already filed in federal court against Ohio, is still pending. Where is the lawsuit against Tennessee?

  • 4. JayJonson  |  October 17, 2018 at 6:44 am

    Thailand is set to enact civil-unions legislation, according to Asia Times. The junta is reportedly preparing a bill that will extend legal recognition to same-sex couples by the end of the year.

    The bill that the Thai government is expected to pass will lead to a civil partnership act that recognizes same-sex unions. Existing law only recognizes heterosexual marriage and does not allow an individual in a same-sex relationship to receive the body of a dead partner, nor does it provide the same rights in regards to inheriting the partner's assets.

    The military government aims to pass the bill before the next general election, slated for as early as next February.

    https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Thailand-set-to-

  • 5. VIRick  |  October 17, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    Panamá: FAD Presidential Pre-Candidate Supports Marriage Equality

    Per LGBT Marriage News:

    Panamá: Precandidato del FAD a la Presidencia Apoya el Matrimonio Igualitario

    Este es el primer aspirante a la presidencia de la República que da a conocer de manera clara y tajante su apoyo a la legalización de las personas del mismo sexo. "Yo estoy de acuerdo, yo creo que somos un país diverso, debemos aprender a vivir unidos en la diversidad y eso implica reconocimiento a la diversidad sexual", afirmó Richard Morales, uno de los tres precandidatos presidenciales del Frente Amplio por la Democracia (FAD).
    https://www.critica.com.pa/nacional/precandidato-

    This is the first candidate for the Presidency of the Republic who clearly and emphatically discloses his support for its legalization for same-sex couples. "I agree, I believe that we are a diverse country, we must learn to live together in diversity and that implies recognition of sexual diversity," said Richard Morales, one of the three presidential candidates of the Broad Front for Democracy (FAD).

  • 6. VIRick  |  October 17, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Romania: Ruling Party to Submit Same-Sex Civil Partnership Bill Today

    Per LGBT Marriage News:

    Romania’s ruling Social Democrat Party is to submit a bill to parliament on Wednesday (today, 17 October 2018) to legalize civil partnership for same-sex couples, less than two weeks after the party supported a failed referendum on redefining marriage in the constitution to outlaw the possibility of gay marriage.

    Romania is among the last countries in the EU not to recognise any form of civil union between people of the same sex, and the bill is keenly awaited by the country’s embattled LGBT community. “The next step after the [failed marriage] referendum is legalizing civil partnership,” Vlad Viski, head of MosaiQ, an LGBT rights organization in Bucharest, told BIRN.

    The draft bill pushed by the Social Democrats has been written by experts from the National Council for Combatting Discrimination, in cooperation with the LGBT rights organization, Accept.
    http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/romanian-

  • 7. VIRick  |  October 17, 2018 at 8:23 pm

    Puebla: Same-Sex Marriage Bill Presented in State Congress

    Per Rocío García Olmedo‏:

    Hoy día, el 17 de octubre 2018, presenté ante el pleno del Congreso de Puebla, la iniciativa de decreto para reformar diversas disposiciones del Código Civil para el Estado de Puebla, por virtud del cual se permita el Matrimonio Igualitario entre personas del mismo sexo.
    https://twitter.com/rgolmedo/status/1052640706051

    Today, 17 October 2018, I presented before the plenary session of the Puebla Congress, the decree initiative to amend various provisions of the Civil Code for the State of Puebla, by virtue of which Equal Marriage between persons of the same sex is allowed.

    Rocío García Olmedo‏ is a state deputy for PRI in the state Congress of Puebla.

    So, even PRI is now falling in line to support and promote same-sex marriage. In 2015, the then-legislator for the PRD, Socorro Quesada Tiempo introduced almost identical legislation. But that earlier version was never approved. This report explains every detail:
    https://www.periodicocentral.mx/2018/politica/ite

  • 8. VIRick  |  October 17, 2018 at 8:49 pm

    Argentina: Another First Same-Sex Marriage in Small Town Argentina

    En el Registro Civil de General Ramírez, se celebró el primer matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo. La pareja conformada por Iván Schild, oriundo de la localidad de Isletas, departamento Diamante, y Sebastian Ramos de la ciudad de Villaguay, contrajo enlace el sábado, el 13 de octubre 2018, a las 12.00, el mismo día en que cumplieron cinco años de noviazgo.

    Recordemos que en Argentina se aprobó la Ley de Matrimonio Igualitario el 15 de julio del 2010, siendo el primer país latinoamericano en reconocer este derecho. Hasta el año pasado, más de 16.000 personas pasaron por los registros civiles del territorio nacional, pero en Ramírez y la zona, es la primera pareja en formalizar la relación.
    https://www.isletasnoticias.com.ar/ramirez-se-cel

    In the Civil Registry of General Ramírez, the first marriage between people of the same sex was celebrated. The couple formed by Iván Schild, a native of the town of Isletas, Diamante department, and Sebastian Ramos of the city of Villaguay, contracted to marry on Saturday, 13 October 2018, at 12:00, the same day they celebrated five years of engagement.

    Recall that in Argentina the Equal Marriage Law was approved on 15 July 2010, being the first Latin American country to recognize this right. Through 2017, more than 16,000 same-sex couples went through the civil registers of Argentina, but in Ramírez and environs, this is the first such couple to formalize their relationship.

    Note: General Ramírez is a village and municipality in Entre Ríos Province in north-eastern Argentina, and as its name implies, is the province sandwiched between the two rivers, el Río Paraná y el Río Uruguay.

  • 9. allan120102  |  October 17, 2018 at 9:11 pm

    Arkansas
    Well it looks this red state is bluer than most blue states in this issue.It looks like Arkansas was the first state to issue gender neutral Ids since 2010, earlier than Oregon which we thought it was the first state. https://www.gaystarnews.com/article/arkansas-gend

  • 10. VIRick  |  October 17, 2018 at 9:39 pm

    Nuevo León: Same-Sex Marriage to Become a Reality on 16 April 2019

    Angélica Hernández, de Litiga y de Gessac, nos explica cómo el Matrimonio Igualitario será legal en Nuevo León en el 2019.
    https://verificado.com.mx/matrimonio-igualitario-

    Angélica Hernández, from Litiga and Gessac, explains how Equal Marriage will be legal in Nuevo León in 2019.

    This is a long article, written by Angélica herself, detailing the process by which she forced the courts to impose marriage equality, some of which I have already posted in a previous thread. But this is new: the correct count-down to the court-imposed expiration date (as I had originally calculated the expiration to occur by very late February):

    El 28 de junio de 2018, el Congreso, que estaba en receso, se dio por notificado. Así la cuenta de 90 días inició el 3 de septiembre con la nueva Legislatura. Según la Diputada Dolores Leal, quien presentó la iniciativa que reforma el Código Civil, el plazo vence el 16 de abril de 2019. Pues, la Ley de Amparo señala que son 90 días útiles de periodos de sesiones ordinarios: los lunes, martes y miércoles que sesionan en pleno.
    https://verificado.com.mx/matrimonio-igualitario-

    On 28 June 2018, the Congress, which was in recess, was given notification. Thus, the 90-day count-down began from 3 September with the new Legislature. According to the Deputy Dolores Leal, who presented the initiative to reform the Civil Code, the deadline expires on 16 April 2019. The Law of Amparo indicates that there are to be 90 work days of regular sessions: on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays they are in full session.

  • 11. allan120102  |  October 17, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    Rick I am confuse didnt Sinaloa had something similar of 90 days and that marriage equality should have start on August but it didnt happen.

  • 12. VIRick  |  October 18, 2018 at 12:18 am

    Yes, although I am not certain whether it was ever actually forced through to the bitter end. If I recall, there were warnings and vague promises that if the legislature did not do "x" by a certain date, then the court would have to step in and do it for them. However, I do not think that the court ever did step in, at least not yet.

    But there's another aspect. In Nuevo León, Angélica Hernández is a well-educated, determined, professional legal expert and has a very strong, knowledgeable ally within the state Congress in the person of Dolores Leal. The pair knows what they are doing.

    I hesitate to be too negative, but I do not think that our side has the same level of expertise in Sinaloa, nor have they ever had much of an ally within that state's Congress with any degree of expertise or legal knowledge. One can make the same critique in regard to Veracruz.

    However, with the multiple MORENA electoral victories, the obfuscation is dissipating, given the sheer number of marriage equality bills already introduced into various state Congresses.

    Also, we need to keep an eye on Chihuahua, as court proceedings there seem to be fast-approaching the same level as to what has already occurred in Nuevo León, but with this key difference: Chihuahua already has de facto marriage equality through a gubernatorial executive decree, even though the legislature there has not lifted a finger to change the law. On the other hand, same-sex couples from Nuevo León continue to travel to Coahuila to marry there.

  • 13. VIRick  |  October 18, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    Look! They truly are preparing for same-sex marriage in Nuevo León:

    First Gay Wedding Expo Being Organized in Monterrey

    Organizan Primera Expo Boda Gay en Monterrey

    MONTEGAY – Aunque el Congreso del Estado de Nuevo León está por acatar la resolución de Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación de modificar el Código Civil para legalizar el matrimonio igualitario, un grupo de empresarios locales ya organizan la primera Expo Boda Gay a llevarse a cabo en el norte del país, el 12 y 13 de enero del 2019 en el salón de recepciones del Hotel Four Points by Sheraton Galerías en Monterrey, bajo el tema “Love Is Love."
    https://ulisex.com/organizan-primera-expo-boda-ga

    MONTEGAY – While the Congress of the State of Nuevo León is about to comply with the resolution of the Supreme Court of Justice to modify the Civil Code to legalize marriage equality, a group of local businessmen are already organizing the first Gay Wedding Expo to take place in the north of the country, 12-13 January 2019, in the reception room of the Four Points by Sheraton Galleries Hotel in Monterrey, under the theme "Love Is Love."

  • 14. VIRick  |  October 18, 2018 at 7:49 pm

    Cuba: Secretary of the Council of State on the Basic Need for Marriage Equality

    Cuba: Secretario del Consejo de Estado Fundamenta Necesidad del Matrimonio Igualitario

    “El Derecho no puede permanecer esclavo perpetuo de rezagos sociales, aun cuando en un momento pueda entrar en colisión con parte del espectro social. En su misión transformadora le corresponde también impulsar el desarrollo,” afirmó Homero Acosta Álvarez, secretario del Consejo de Estado, al fundamentar la necesidad de adoptar el nuevo concepto de matrimonio como la unión entre dos personas. El Secretario del Consejo de Estado de sugirió que habrá matrimonio igualitario, a pesar de los desacuerdos.

    Que no cunda el pánico porque haya voces muy estridentes en nuestra contra. Tenemos al Partido y al Estado a favor del matrimonio igualitario.
    https://paquitoeldecuba.com/2018/10/18/secretario

    "The Law can not remain a perpetual slave of social backwardness, even though at a certain moment it may collide with part of the social spectrum. In its transforming mission, it is also its duty to promote development," affirmed Homero Acosta Álvarez, Secretary of the Council of State, on the basic need to adopt the new concept of marriage as the union between two people. The Secretary of the State Council then stated that there will be marriage equality, despite the disagreements.

    Do not panic because there are very loud voices against us. We have the Party and the State in favor of equal marriage.

  • 15. Mechatron12  |  October 18, 2018 at 11:25 pm

    I'm glad you posted this. Frankly there have been a lot of scare articles lately about churches in Cuba "rising up" against the gay marriage law.

  • 16. arturo547  |  October 19, 2018 at 3:04 pm

    Bosnia and Herzegovina: Entity government adopts request to legalise same-sex unions (not clear if it's marriage or civil unions).

    Link: http://ba.n1info.com/a292110/English/NEWS/FBiH-ad

  • 17. VIRick  |  October 19, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    "Que no cunda el pánico" is a gay expression in Spanish akin to "Don't press the panic button," "Don't clutch your pearls too tightly," or "Don't get your knickers in a twist," but which is actually somewhat difficult to translate. More or less literally, it means, "Don't fret yourself into panic mode," or simply, "Do not panic."

    That last sentence was actually written as an add-on comment by the gay Cuban Blogger, Francisco Rodríguez, who goes by the name, "Paquitoeldecuba." (Paquito, he from Cuba).

  • 18. VIRick  |  October 19, 2018 at 5:48 pm

    Guanajuato: Marriage Equality Bill Introduced into State Congress

    Per Diversidad PRD‏:

    La SNDS saluda con entusiasmo la iniciativa de ley de matrimonio igualitario propuesta por Dip. Isidoro Bazaldúa L. en el Congreso de Guanajuato hoy día, el 19 de octubre 2018. El PRD Mexico, en congruencia con sus principios y documentos básicos, será vigilante del proceso legislativo.
    https://twitter.com/senadisexprd

    The SNDS welcomes with enthusiasm the initiative for equal marriage proposed by Deputy Isidoro Bazaldúa L. in the Congress of Guanajuato today, 19 October 2018. The PRD Mexico, in congruence with its principles and basic agenda, will be vigilant in the legislative process.

  • 19. VIRick  |  October 19, 2018 at 6:39 pm

    Uruguay: Enhanced Trans Rights Bill Becomes Law

    Per Liliana Berna:‏

    A las 2:18 AM, el 19 de octubre 2018, la Ley Trans es una realidad en Uruguay. Seguimos dando batalla en la región!!
    https://twitter.com/bernaliliana

    At 2:18 AM, on October 19, 2018, the Trans Law is a reality in Uruguay. We continue to fight in the region!

    Per Diputados del Uruguay:‏

    La Cámara de Representantes aprobó, luego de diez horas de discusión, el proyecto de ley integral para personas trans, iniciativa que pasa ahora al Poder Ejecutivo para su promulgación.
    https://twitter.com/DiputadosUY

    The House of Representatives approved, after ten hours of discussion, the comprehensive bill for transgender people, an initiative that now passes to the Executive for its enactment.

    Uruguay now has the most comprehensive, progressive transgender rights law of any nation in the entire Western Hemisphere. And uniquely, worldwide, it is the very first to offer monetary reparations to all transgender individuals for the abuse and suffering they endured during the military dictatorship. (Sub-text from Uruguay, given the timing of this bill's passage: Here's looking at you, Brasi. Uruguay was once one of the states of Brasil, but Argentina made certain that that arrangement would not persist. Technically, Uruguay gained its independence from Brasil by way of Portugal, and not from Spain).

  • 20. VIRick  |  October 20, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    Florida: Judge Dismisses Charges Arising from Gay Sex Sting

    On 19 October 2018, a Florida judge has dismissed charges against a man who was arrested as part of a sting of an adult store. In July 2018, police in Hollywood, Florida, responded to an anonymous complaint about gay sex in the backroom of the Pleasure Emporium.

    Police responded with an undercover sting. Two officers went to the Pleasure Emporium, paid $25 each to enter the backroom, walked under a giant neon sign that read “PRIVATE VIEWING,” watched gay men having sex in a room, and then arrested 13 of them.

    The men were prosecuted for indecent exposure in a public place, but Broward County Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren just ruled that the backroom of the Pleasure Emporium is not a public place. “The court finds that the Pleasure Emporium is not a public space under [Florida Statute] 800.03,” she wrote, citing that the law specifically says it’s not a crime to expose oneself “in any place provided or set apart for that purpose.” She noted that the private rooms are separated from the public business area with several barriers, like a locked door, a sign that says the rooms are private, and the $25 fee.

    As a separate side issue, Florida media outed the same 13 men by publishing their names and photos, after having received said information from the Hollywood Police Department. Since their actions have just been ruled a non-crime, a separate civil suit for damages is likely to be filed against the police department.

    In addition, Rhonda Gelfman, a lawyer who is representing many of the men arrested in the sting, said that she will now try to help those among the remaining 12 who have already pleaded guilty to something that the judge just ruled wasn’t even a crime.
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2018/10/judge-dismiss

  • 21. VIRick  |  October 20, 2018 at 2:31 pm

    Australia: Lesbian Wins Key Parliamentary Seat, Tips Balance of Power

    An independent lesbian candidate in Australia has won the seat in Parliament (in the House) once held by former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and tipped the balance of power in the nation. Kerryn Phelps, a doctor who was active in the successful campaign for marriage equality in Australia, emerged the winner in a by-election held Saturday, 20 October 2018, to fill the vacancy left by Turnbull’s recent resignation, the "New York Times" reports. The seat represents the Wentworth district in Sydney’s suburbs.

    Phelps’s victory over Liberal Party candidate Dave Sharma also cost the party, which is actually a center-right party and is grossly mis-named,, its razor-thin one-seat majority in Parliament. Turnbull resigned the seat in August when he was ousted as prime minister and party leader. It is a prized seat that “has been held by the Liberals for as long as the party has existed, the "Sydney Morning Herald" notes.

    The changed make-up of Parliament means the new prime minister, the Liberal Party’s Scott Morrison, “will have to negotiate with independents and the opposition to pass every piece of legislation between now and the next federal election,” the "Times" reports. That election will likely be held in May 2019, but Morrison could call one sooner.

    Phelps’s political stances are “socially progressive and economically conservative,” according to the "Herald."
    https://www.advocate.com/world/2018/10/20/lesbian

    Note: The opposition Labour Party already controls a majority of the seats in the Australian Senate.

  • 22. VIRick  |  October 20, 2018 at 3:15 pm

    Querétaro: No Amparo Needed for Same-Sex Couples to Marry, Policy Continues

    Per AM Querétaro‏:

    Matrimonio Igualitario No Requerirá Amparo en el Municipio de Querétaro‏

    La figura jurídica no será necesaria para ejercer el derecho de contraer matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo. Durante la administración capitalina, 2018-2021, no se prevé un amparo para contraer matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo, indicó el alcalde, Luis Bernardo Nava Guerrero, quien dijo que hay un completo respeto a la Ley y a los derechos humanos de las personas.
    https://amqueretaro.com/queretaro/2018/10/19/matr

    Equal Marriage Will Not Require Amparo in the Municipality of Querétaro

    This legal measure will not be necessary in order to exercise the right to marry between people of the same sex. During the 2018-2021 administration of the state capital, no amparo is foreseen in order for same-sex couples to marry, said the mayor, Luis Bernardo Nava Guerrero, who also said that there is full respect for the law and for human rights.

    Note: This is actually a re-iteration of a policy which has been in place in the city of Querétaro since the Supreme Court's declaration of jurisprudence in 2015 on the matter of same-sex marriage. Still, it is good to see that this established policy will be continuing, and that said policy is drawn to everyone's attention from time to time.

    The full name of the state capital of Querétaro state is Santiago de Querétaro, but quite frequently, it is shortened down to just Querétaro. About 40% of the entire state's population live within the municipal bounds of the state capital. A total of 8 municipalities, of 18 statewide, do not require amparos in order for same-sex couples to marry.

    The state capital for the state of Oaxaca, which carries the same name, Oaxaca, has a similar, but slightly more complex work-around in place, thus also allowing same-sex couples there to marry without the need for an amparo, despite the fact that their state law has also not yet been changed.

  • 23. VIRick  |  October 20, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    Chile: Civil Unions (AUC) Up-Date, After 3 Years

    Per La Tercera:

    A tres años del Acuerdos de Uniones Civiles (AUC), más de 21 mil parejas se han unido en Chile por esta vía.

    “Nada puede ser mejor que este momento”. Así quedó registrada en La Tercera del viernes 23 de octubre de 2015, la felicidad de Esteban Guzmán Rioseco y Vicente Medel Salazar, quienes ese día, a las 08.45 horas, en Concepción, se convirtieron oficialmente en la primera pareja que legalizó su condición bajo el Acuerdo de Unión Civil (AUC) en Chile.

    Este lunes se cumplirán exactamente tres años, y según la información obtenida desde el Registro Civil vía Transparencia, ya suman 21.189 las parejas que han seguido los pasos de Esteban y Vicente al cabo de tres años de vigencia.

    El AUC es una ley que regula las condiciones jurídicas, sociales, culturales, y económicas de aquellas parejas y familias que no quieren o no pueden contraer matrimonio, pero que sí desean formalizar su unión.
    https://www.latercera.com/nacional/noticia/tres-a

    After three years of having Civil Union Agreements (AUC), more than 21 thousand couples in Chile have been joined in this way.

    "Nothing can be better than this moment." Such was recorded in "La Tercera" on Friday, 23 October, 2015, the happiness of Esteban Guzmán Rioseco and Vicente Medel Salazar, who that day, at 08:45 AM, in Concepción, officially became the first couple to legalize their relationship under the Civil Union Agreement (AUC) in Chile.

    This Monday, 23 October 2018, will be exactly three years, and according to the information obtained from the Civil Registry via Transparency, a total of 21,189 couples have followed in the steps of Esteban and Vicente after three years of validity.

    The AUC is a law that regulates the legal, social, cultural, and economic conditions of those couples and families who do not want or who can not get married, but who do want to formalize their union.

    Of these 21,000 couples, we should note that a certain portion of them are from outside of Chile, primarily from either Perú or Bolivia.

  • 24. theperchybird  |  October 21, 2018 at 2:08 am

    Clarification from a local: It's civil unions and it's only for the Federation of Bosnia & Herzegovina which is the Bosniak-Croatian half of the country. Republika Srpska is the other half of the nation of "Bosnia & Herzegovina" (which is different from FB&H).

  • 25. Dexi22  |  October 21, 2018 at 2:25 am

    The opposition Labor Party controls 26 of the 76 seats in the Australian Senate. Nonetheless, the right-wing Liberal/National Government has a hard enough time passing contentious legislation in the Senate given it has only 31 seats, far short of a majority. It will now lose its majority in the House of Representatives as well thanks to Phelps' victory last night.

  • 26. Mechatron12  |  October 21, 2018 at 6:35 am

    Even that would be HUGE, if it actually happens. The Fed would be the only majority Muslim country in the world with any sort of partnership rights for gays, if it happens. Unfortunately Republika Srpska is even more regressive and isolated than Serbia, so don't hold your breath there.

  • 27. ianbirmingham  |  October 21, 2018 at 10:42 am

    Trump Administration Eyes Defining Transgender Out Of Existence

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/21/us/politics/tr

    "Sex means a person's status as male or female based on immutable biological traits identifiable by or before birth," the department [of Health & Human Services] proposed in the memo, according to The [New York] Times. "The sex listed on a person's birth certificate, as originally issued, shall constitute definitive proof of a person's sex unless rebutted by reliable genetic evidence."

    The move would essentially exclude the transgender population from civil rights protections, and rolls back Obama administration policies that relaxed the legal concept of sex in federal programs, recognizing it largely as a person's choice.

    The new definition of sex is expected to be presented to the Department of Justice by the end of the year, the publication reported. If the definition is deemed legal, it could be approved and enforced across Title IX statutes and government agencies.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/10/21/trump-admin-repor

    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2018/10/trump-plans-r

  • 28. ianbirmingham  |  October 21, 2018 at 10:46 am

    @BernieSanders: The cruelty and bigotry of this administration truly has no limit. We should be doing everything we can to protect our transgender brothers and sisters.

    https://twitter.com/BernieSanders/status/10540279

  • 29. VIRick  |  October 21, 2018 at 1:08 pm

    Northern Ireland: Shop at Center of "Gay Cake Row," Up-Date and Post-Script

    (As Karma, Almost Immediately, Bites the Bigoted Bakers a Lethal Blow)

    They may have "won" the court suit, but they lost the over-all battle. The shop at the center of the gay cake row, Ashers Bakery on Royal Avenue in Central Belfast, is closing down, as the company’s managers said that the branch is not “busy enough.” The shop came to national attention after the owners refused to bake a cake in support of same-sex marriage.

    In 2014, the owners of the store were taken to court for refusing to bake said cake, as they claimed that such went against their religious beliefs. An initial ruling was decided in favor of gay rights activist Gareth Lee; however, the owners of the store then went through several appeals until their case finally reached the Supreme Court. Earlier in October 2018, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the bakers.

    But now, only a few weeks later, the bakery is closing down.
    https://www.gaytimes.co.uk/community/114202/the-s

    The owners/managers did not explain why the shop was deemed to be "not busy enough," but one can speculate that many customers, especially those who did not wish to become caught up in any possible additional controversy, simply took their business elsewhere. Undoubtedly, most people merely wish to order a cake, and not become engaged in a never-ending, expensive lawsuit over such a simple transaction.

    In looking on their website, there are 7 other retail branches of this business: Ballyearl, Mallusk, Monkstown, Kings Crescent, Dargan, Ballyeaston, and Carnmoney. The actual facility where they do all their baking is located at: 581 Doagh Rd, Newtownabbey BT36 5RZ, UK.
    http://www.ashersbakingco.com/

  • 30. VIRick  |  October 21, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    Hair Furor's Bigoted Ignorance Attacking Transgender Individuals' Very Existence

    Per Equality Case Files:

    The current, ignorant, bigoted mal-administration is considering narrowly defining gender as a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth, the most drastic move yet in a government-wide effort to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law.

    The Department of Health and Human Services is spearheading an effort to establish a legal definition of sex under Title IX, the federal civil rights law that bans gender discrimination in education programs that receive government financial assistance, according to a memo obtained by the "New York Times."

    The department argued in its memo that key government agencies needed to adopt an explicit and uniform definition of gender as determined "on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable." The agency’s proposed definition would define sex as either male or female, unchangeable, and determined by the genitals that a person is born with, according to a draft reviewed by the "Times." Any dispute about one’s sex would have to be clarified using genetic testing.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/21/us/politics/tr

    Here are some reactions and responses to said ignorance:

    Transgender Law Center:
    To be clear: nothing this administration can do will undermine the scores of federal courts that have recognized our humanity and hundreds of state and local legal protections we’ve already won. We know now that the administration intends to ignore the preponderance of law, science and evidence on gender identity to empower hate and rollback access to healthcare and to make schools less safe for transgender and gender nonconforming youth. Transgender Law Center will fight this as we’ve fought all of the attacks by this administration, and the many attacks that came before the current administration.
    http://bit.ly/2PIA4ru

    The ACLU:
    James Esseks, director of the ACLU LGBT & HIV Project issued the following in response: “This is an attack on the very lives and existence of transgender people. It is painful, it is hateful, and it will not go unchallenged. Transgender people have the right to not only exist, but to fully participate in public life. Transgender people are real and transgender lives have meaning."
    http://bit.ly/2PLBJfL

    Freedom For All Americans:
    “This proposal from the Trump administration ignores science, it ignores the growing will of voters and elected officials across the country, and it ignores basic human dignity,” said Masen Davis, CEO of Freedom for All Americans. “If the administration moves forward with its attempts to so narrowly define sex throughout federal law, it will be complicit in increasing discrimination and violence against transgender Americans on a multitude of fronts. This action represents an affront to the basic promises of freedom, opportunity, and equality that all Americans cherish.”
    http://bit.ly/2PJTXOI

  • 31. VIRick  |  October 21, 2018 at 5:12 pm

    Dominican Republic: A Second Genetic Anomaly (archived 14 August 2017)

    The genetic anomaly, mentioned in the post immediately above, is not the same as Partial Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (PAIS), which according to Wikipedia, is indicated when the external genitalia is partially, but not fully masculinized.

    This PAIS condition matches with what I have encountered,– very cute, smooth-skinned "pretty boys" with tiny dicks, little to no body hair, and a body shape with lots of curves, along with a sensitive, quiet feminine demeanor,– and are all from the same region in the very eastern part of the Dominican Republic, in and around the city of San Pedro Macorís.

    These PAIS individuals are born biologically male, but otherwise have pronounced female characteristics. As adults, they are very androgynous (and very gay), but are otherwise protected by family and the society at large. It is not discussed, but is simply accepted.

    Thus, the presence of two rather opposing genetic anomalies, one turning apparent "girls" into boys, and the other turning ostensible boys into "girls," in the relatively small-sized nation of the Dominican Republic, along with the quiet acceptance of both groups among the surrounding common people of the country, goes a long way toward blocking out and negating the more bigoted chatter emanating from the official hierarchy on the two subjects of gender identity and sexual orientation. The population-at-large, from direct personal experience, simply knows better.

    Dominican Republic: First-Ever Legal Transsexual Name-Change Decreed

    On 12 June 2018, President Danilo Medina Sánchez issued a decree to change the name of transsexual, Mía Cepeda, the first in Dominican history to do so via legal means.

    Within the Dominican Republic, this was the major news event of the day, and the first official recognition of the existence of the LGBT community in any form, as the presidential decree was quite broad and actually benefited 35 individuals, all who had previously petitioned the government for name-change, including the very visible Dominican TV news presenter, Mía Cepeda.

    So, while the president of the Dominican Republic is busy signing presidential decrees allowing transgender individuals to legally change their names, and the common people around Barahona quietly and calmly accept the intersex Guevedoces, while the common people around San Pedro Macorís calmly and quietly accept those with the PAIS genetic anomaly, Hair Furor and his minions rant against the very concept.

  • 32. VIRick  |  October 21, 2018 at 5:13 pm

    Then compare that to this reality in the Dominican Republic, a Latin country not known for being at the forefront of transgender rights:

    Dominican Republic: The Guevedoces (archived 13 August 2017)

    Some children who are born with vaginas go on to grow penises due to a rare genetic disorder. In a rural village in the Dominican Republic, an estimated one in 90 children who seem to be girls grow male genitalia during puberty. The children are known as Guevedoces, which translates literally as "penis-at-12," referring to their age when their physical appearance starts to change.

    This extraordinary intersex condition, known medically as 5-alpha-reductase deficiency, has previously been documented for a BBC2 series 'Countdown to Life' which takes a look at how we develop in the womb and how early changes impact us for the rest of our lives.

    Many children who live in the village of Las Salinas (near Barahona), located in the southwestern part of the Dominican Republic, are affected by the condition. The children, when born, have nothing except what appears to be a vagina, and it is only as they mature that it becomes apparent all is not as it seems. Dr. Julianne Imperato-McGinley originally investigated the phenomenon in the early 1970s, and found that while genetically male, Guevedoces lack the enzyme, 5-alpha reductase, that converts testosterone to dihydro-testosterone and helps form the penis. When these children hit puberty, the body is flooded with another surge of testosterone, causing a penis to finally develop and testes to descend.

    The penis remains somewhat undersized, but apart from that, it is usually fully functioning, with the testes even producing sperm. In the Dominican Republic, the birth of a pseudo-hermaphrodite is fully accepted, and during puberty, the child's physical transformation into a male is marked by joyous celebration.

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