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  • 1. VIRick  |  November 6, 2017 at 11:16 am

    Costa Rica: First-Ever Conference on Marriage Equality

    Here is a paragraph, focusing on Latin America, taken from Evan Wolfson's latest essay:

    Inclusion, Momentum, and the Freedom to Marry Worldwide

    This month, from 8 through 11 November 2017, lawyers, experts, and activists from several Latin American countries will gather for a first-ever Conference on Marriage Equality aimed at sharing ideas regionally while ratcheting up public awareness and discussion in the host country of Costa Rica. Their goal is to shine the spotlight on the mountain of evidence and experience showing that families are helped and no one hurt when the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage ends. With a whopping 70% of the people of Latin America already now living in freedom to marry countries, advocates from Panama and Peru, El Salvador and Ecuador, and others across the region are asking, why should any families, any countries, be left behind?

    One can read the entire essay here:

    Evan Wolfson is expected to be one of the participants at the Costa Rica conference. The Costa Rica Supreme Court will host conference attendees on Friday afternoon, 10 November.

  • 2. VIRick  |  November 6, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    DACA Cases in New York and California Federal Courts

    Per Equality Case Files:

    The government defendants are challenging district court orders that require them to turn over additional documents and to participate in discovery related to how the administration came to the decision to rescind the DACA policy.

    In both sets of cases, the feds have petitioned the appeals courts, the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York and the 9th Circuit in California, to force the district court to reverse their orders.

    Filed today, 6 November 2017, and linked here, is the response of the plaintiffs in one of the New York cases, "Vidal v. Duke," to the defendants' petition in the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. One can expect the court to receive a separate response from the plaintiffs in "New York v. Trump."

    In addition, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear argument on the defendants' petition tomorrow, 7 November 2017, at 2 PM in Pasadena CA.

  • 3. allan120102  |  November 6, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Tomorrow will be an important day for the LGBT community in Zacatecas
    LGBT collectives and deputy María Elena Ortega met at the State Congress, where on Tuesday, Human Rights and Public Security legislative committees will discuss the proposal so that in Zacatecas it can be carried out the equal marriage.

    Maria Elena Ortega, mentioned that the proposal seeks to modify Article 100 of the Family Code so that the phrase that "marriage can only be between a man and a woman" is deleted, leaving it as "marriage may occur between persons", in this way It will be taking a big step in society, said those present.
    The collectives asked that the proposal be analyzed in an impartial manner, in accordance with the law and without moral or religious influences; the PRD deputy trusted that the initiative will be approved by the majority of the 30 deputies.

    "In personal terms, I am sure that it will be approved, but not only because the deputies address this, but because there is an international, national and local movement that makes these rights materialize," said the PRD deputy.

    Finally, Sara Ortiz activist of the LGBT community mentioned that in case of not being approved, legal and even human rights tools will be sought to obtain the approval of the same.

  • 4. allan120102  |  November 6, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    NL lgbt groups are doing a protest in front of the legislative house in NL as they say they are getting behind compare to other states as same sex marriage is still not legal in the state.
    Monterrey.- Integrantes del Movimiento por la Igualdad en Nuevo León instalaron una carpa desde las 6:30 horas de este lunes para anunciar que no se irán hasta que los diputados locales apruebe el matrimonio igualitario.
    Monterrey.- Members of the Movement for Equality in Nuevo Leon set up a tent from 6:30 am on Monday to announce that they will not leave until the local deputies approve the equal marriage.

    Led by Mario Rodríguez Platas, representative of the LGBT community, the group settled in one of the access to the Legislative Palace that is located in the Macroplaza.

    Omar Eduardo Solís, secretary general of the movement, assured ABC that they will not move from there to pressure the legislators.

    "We are going to be here, if we have to be here during the holidays, if we have to celebrate Chanukah, Christmas, whatever, here we are going to celebrate, because we are falling behind the rest of the country and it is time," he said. .

    More than a year ago, in October 2016, the independent deputy Jorge Blanco, gave an initiative to amend the Civil Registry Law of Nuevo Leon, to recognize the figure of marriage between people of the same sex.

    This proposal was turned over to the Legislation Commission, which is chaired by PRI member Héctor García, where it has remained unanswered.Solís assured that, with this act, the community hopes to become visible, to summon its allies and to engage in constructive dialogues with the deputies involved in attending the initiative.

    "Equal marriage, call it what you want, what we are looking for is legal certainty, for families, because it has been frozen there for years, the dialogue has remained stagnant," he added.

    Although they still do not have a specific appointment with a deputy, the community hopes to be able to schedule it soon, since, necessarily, the legislators have to pass through there, on the way to the parking lot.

    In this barracks, which will be a meeting point and meeting center, the protesters prepare different musical and cultural activities in order that the passers see them on the weekends.

    The egalitarian couples who visit the tent, will be taken a photo, which will be uploaded to social networks, to extend the demonstration to the Internet.

    Solís acknowledged the complexity of the issue, since the election year begins and the political parties do not want to enter into controversies that will reduce votes in the elections of 2018.

  • 5. VIRick  |  November 6, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    The Process to Normalize Marriage Equality in Chiapas Begins

    Inicia Proceso para Normalizar Matrimonio Igualitario en Chiapas

    Per AquíNoticiasMX de Tuxtla Gutiérrez:

    A partir de diciembre, el trámite (para normalizar matrimonio igualitario) estaría implementándose en manera progresiva en las oficialías de la entidad.

    As of December, the procedure (to normalize marriage equality) is to be implemented progressively in the registry offices of the state.

    Since the more progressive civil registrar of San Cristóbal de las Casas has recently announced that she has already "normalized" marriage equality at her office, effective from 30 October 2017, (and by extension, correctly claims said "normalization" to have statewide application), one has to presume that the less progressive civil registrar in Tuxtla Gutiérrez will finally be doing the same, come December. Although there are a total of 118 municipios within the state of Chiapas, these are two of its largest cities (along with Tapachula and Ocosingo).

    Further down in this thread, AquíNoticiasMX has a much more complete, accurately-explained article, detailing the entire normalization process step-by-step. One should carefully note this procedure, as fully spelled out, as it is also applicable to all of the remaining states in Mexico which have yet to legalize same-sex marriage. One can find said article here:

  • 6. JayJonson  |  November 7, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    Scotland's devolved government issued an apology on Tuesday to men convicted in the past for same-sex activity and passed a new law which will allow them to clear their names.

    "It is only right that we address this historic wrong," First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told the Scottish parliament.

    "Discriminatory laws, although abolished, continue to have implications for people to this day," she added. "The wrong has been committed by the state to them, not by the individuals."

    She added: "I categorically, unequivocally and wholeheartedly apologize for those laws and for the hurt and the harm they did to so many."

    Watching from the gallery, same-sex couples wept, held hands and applauded.

    Consensual homosexual acts between men aged over 21 in Scotland were decriminalized in 1981.

    "(The) apology will give a great deal of comfort to many who were unjustly prosecuted and will help draw a line, once and for all, under a dark period in Scotland's history," gay rights group Stonewall said in a statement.

    The legislation "acknowledges the wrongfulness and discriminatory effect of past convictions for certain historical sexual offences" by pardoning people convicted of those offences and providing a legal process for convictions to be disregarded.

    In January, the UK government passed a similar law relating to England and Wales.

  • 7. scream4ever  |  November 7, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    21 seems high. Does Scotland have an equal age of consent?

  • 8. JayJonson  |  November 7, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    They do now. In 2004, the age of consent was set at 14 regardless of gender or sexual orientation. In 2010, it was amended to 16.

  • 9. scream4ever  |  November 7, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    First good news of the night!

    She will be the first trans person in US history to serve in a state legislature!!!

  • 10. VIRick  |  November 7, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    Virginia: Entrenched Homophobe Defeated in House of Delegates by Transgender Woman

    Bob Marshall, R-Prince William County/Manassas, an entrenched, fossilized, incumbent homophobe, the self-declared "homophobe-in-chief," and author of Virginia's failed anti-transgender bathroom bill, has been soundly beaten by double digits in his last bid for re-election by what can only be described as utterly sheer, pure poetic justice.

    The candidate who beat him was Danica Roem, D-Prince William County/Manassas, a transgender woman who has now become the first-ever transgender member of the Virginia House of Delegates, and in fact, the first-ever transgender member of any state legislature in the entire USA.

    Not to be out-done, two Latinas, Hala Ayala, D-Prince William County (of Salvadoran/Lebanese ancestry), and Elizabeth Guzman, D-Prince William County/Woodbridge, both won seats in the same House of Delegates, making them the first two Latinas to do so. Plus, all 3, in narrowly gerrymandered and fast-growing Prince William County, flipped seats from R to D, with the Democrats potentially gaining a total of 17 seats in the 100-member House. Plus, there's Chris Hurst who flipped another seat in the Roanoke area to the Democrats while running on an anti-guns platform, after his fiancée was killed by a disgruntled ex-employee on a live local TV broadcast.

    It has now been confirmed, one day later, that the Democrats have secured a 16-seat gain, bringing their membership up from 34 to 50, while the Republicans probably have secured 49. Several seats, including the pivotal one, are subject to re-count, the results of which will not be known for some time.

    All 3 statewide positions, Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney-General, have been retained by Democrats.

  • 11. TheVirginian722  |  November 8, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    Update: As of close of business Wednesday, one of the 16 seats gained by the Democrats has slipped away, as Delegate Tim Hugo (R-Fairfax) has regained the lead in his race. So the likely outcome at this point will be a 51-49 GOP House, a truly shocking change from the previous 66-34 Republican majority.

    Along with the election of Danica Roem, we also elected our legislature's first out-lesbian, Dawn Adams, a nurse who unseated a GOP incumbent in the Richmond suburbs. And, of course, we re-elected our two incumbent gay Delegates, Mark Sickles and Mark Levine.

    On a somewhat bittersweet note, among the Republicans who lost were our two staunch pro-LGBT allies, Joe Yost of Giles County and Ron Villanueva of Virginia Beach, who have consistently supported us and were endorsed by Equality Virginia.

  • 12. guitaristbl  |  November 8, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Continuing last night's electoral success for the democrats projections show that the house will go from an almost GOP supermajority to a 50-50 split handing de facto control to the democrats as the elected Lt. governor is a democrat.

  • 13. scream4ever  |  November 8, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    Yup, and since Republicans only have a one-seat majority in the Senate, it's likely the Medicaid expansion can finally be approved, and hopefully and LGBT rights bill too.

  • 14. JayJonson  |  November 9, 2017 at 6:04 am

    It is outrageous, however, that Democrats received 55% of the votes, but could only muster 49% of the legislative seats. Republican gerrymandering at work even when they lose in a landslide.

  • 15. guitaristbl  |  November 9, 2017 at 8:07 am

    Well recounts have to be made so we'll see about the seats if they will be 49 or 50 or 51. Yes it is outrageous but it showed that even their gerrymandering cannot stop big losses for them which is comforting.

  • 16. allan120102  |  November 8, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    300 marriages have occur in Chihuahua since the state stop fighting ss couples from getting married.

  • 17. allan120102  |  November 9, 2017 at 9:41 am

    Breaking news. Veracruz has just become the 13th state to legalize ssm after a massive amparo was granted. The amparo makes ss legal. As the amparo was granted statewide and applies to every ssc who wants to marry and adopt. For sure the goverment will appeal this ruling but if affirm by the SC which it will Veracruz will be the 13 Mexican state to let ss couples to marry.

  • 18. allan120102  |  November 9, 2017 at 9:47 am

    More on Veracruz is that couple from other states where ssm is not legal might go to Veracruz and have a marriage perform. I guess this work as Veracruz already surpass the 5 amparo limit. Other lgbt organizations in other states should copy this action taken by Veracruz lgbt groups and do in there states so they can have ssm

  • 19. VIRick  |  November 9, 2017 at 8:57 pm

    Veracruz: Amparo Approved for Same-Sex Marriage and Adoption

    Aprueban Amparo para Matrimonios y Adopciones Gay en Veracruz

    El presidente de la Comunidad LGBTI Jarochos, Guillermo Izacur Maldonado, afirmó haber ganado an amparo general que permite en automático los matrimonios entre personas del mismo sexo en Veracruz y según él, hasta las adopciones de menores.

    Informo que es el Amparo 641/2017, otorgado por el juez José Arquímedes Loranca Luna, titular del Juzgado Cuarto del Distrito de Veracruz, y emitido el 7 de noviembre 2017 contra el gobierno del estado y la Gaceta Oficial.

    El amparo le promovió desde junio la Alianza para la Inclusión y la Indiscriminación AC, según él, de aplicación general en todo el estado de Veracruz al crearse jurisprudencia.

    The president of the Comunidad LGBTI Jarochos, Guillermo Izacur Maldonado, claimed to have won a general injunction that automatically allows marriages between persons of the same sex in Veracruz, and according to him, also includes the adoption of minors.

    He informed that it is due to Amparo 641/2017, ordered by Judge José Arquímedes Loranca Luna, head of the Fourth District Court of Veracruz, and issued on 7 November 2017, against the state government and the Official Gazette.

    From June 2017, the amparo had been promoted by the Alliance for Inclusion and Non- Discrimination AC, which according to him, creates jurisprudence of general application in the entire state of Veracruz.

    Note: In February 2017, the Governor of Veracruz issued an Executive Order legalizing same-sex marriage and adoptions, but then rescinded it a few days later. This court order blocks the rescinding of said Executive Order, based on the Supreme Court's own jurisprudence on the matter. Per my archives entry of 27 February 2017:

    By Executive Order Decree, Veracruz legalized same-sex marriage, but after protests from the Family Foundation, the governor rescinded the order. This group is the same one which pushed for the same sort of measures to fail in Durango and in San Luis Potosí. After the protests from the Catholic group, Governor Miguel Angel Yunes Linares finally decided to abrogate the Decree by which a new Marriage Letter had been issued in the state of Veracruz.

    Through the Official Gazette of the extraordinary number 080 of Friday, 24 February 2017, it is established:

    "This Decree repeals the Decree that issues the Marriage Charter of the State of Veracruz, published on 20 February 2017, in the extraordinary number 072 of the Official Gazette, and replaces it with the Veracruz Marriage Charter, published under number 175 of 28 July 2006."

    Groups such as the "Yes, Yes, Family" movement protested because the new marriage letter did not specify the union of a man and a woman, but of two people (without determining sex), which would have allowed for marriage equality.

    The Executive Order Decree, now repealed, was published in the Official Gazette of the State on Monday, 20 February 2017, and contains the "Marriage Letter" to be read by the representative authority of the State Government at the end of the ceremony to celebrate the solemn act of civil marriage. From Monday, 27 February 2017, the Civil Registry officials of the state of Veracruz will again read the "Marriage Letter Veracruz" that has been in use for the past 11 years.

  • 20. VIRick  |  November 11, 2017 at 12:28 am

    Re: Comment regarding the judicial ruling in Veracruz stating, "…. the amparo had been promoted by the Alliance for Inclusion and Non- Discrimination AC, which according to him, creates jurisprudence of general application in the entire state of Veracruz."

    Rex Wockner has this to say, a point with which Geraldina González de la Vega is in agreement:

    "An amparo from a federal district judge can't accomplish that. Amparos protect only the plaintiffs/individuals who file for one from being discriminated against by a governmental entity. There's no such thing as a general-effect amparo, AFAIK."

  • 21. scream4ever  |  November 11, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    This explains why Veracruz hasn't been colored blue on the Wikipedia map.

  • 22. allan120102  |  November 11, 2017 at 4:57 pm

    Also Guerrero should be stripped from Gold to tan.

  • 23. VIRick  |  November 11, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    Whenever it comes to the more arcane intricacies of Mexican law, I always bow to the expertise of Rex Wockner, whose knowledge of the subject is amazingly accurate, and to that of Geraldina González de la Vega, formerly a law clerk at Mexico's Supreme Court, and currently a law professor at Universidad Iberoamericana, and whose knowledge of Mexican law is flawlessly impeccable.

    Both indicate that an "amparo general" does not exist in Mexican law, and therefore, that Guillermo Izacur Maldonado is overstating the effect of the recent positive ruling in Veracruz. Even the quoted news article itself uses terms like "según él" (according to him) and "afirmó haber ganado" (claimed to have gained), indicating that these comments of his are unverified statements which the reporter was simply re-stating as unverified statements.

    Still, the ruling issued by Judge José Arquímedes Loranca Luna on 7 November 2017 with regard to Amparo 641/2017 did something positive pertaining to the Governor's second Executive Order of 24 February 2017 rescinding his first Executive Order of 20 February 2017, which in effect had legalized same-sex marriage in Veracruz state for a few days by having re-phrased the "Marriage Letter" in gender-neutral terms.

  • 24. allan120102  |  November 9, 2017 at 4:15 pm

    Civil registry in Veracruz are waiting to be notified of the amparo that was issue so for now ss couples still cant get marry. Once they learn and study the amparo then they will start issuing ssm licenses, but as I expect the civil registry mention that the state will probably ask for a stay and appeal the ruling. I guess ss couples will need to wait a few more months before they can get marry unless the court does not grant a stay petition.… this is a more complete article.

  • 25. VIRick  |  November 9, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    First Transgender Man Elected to Public Office

    On Tuesday night, 8 November 2017, building on a night of historic firsts for transgender people, Phillipe Cunningham made history in Minnesota by becoming the first openly transgender man elected to public office anywhere in the United States.

    According to the "Minneapolis Star-Tribune," Cunningham won a seat on the Minneapolis City Council by beating out the incumbent, Bara Johnson, of Ward 4 by a margin of fewer than 200 votes. The certification of the results was delayed until the day after Election Day because the results were so close.

    Cunningham’s win means Minneapolis will have two openly transgender council members. Transgender poet and activist Andrea Jenkins, whose win was announced election night, was also elected to the body. Both Cunningham and Jenkins are the first openly transgender people elected to the city council of a major US city, as well as the first openly transgender people of color elected to public office in the United States.

  • 26. scream4ever  |  November 9, 2017 at 6:13 pm

    So thrilled he won and I can proudly say that I worked on his campaign!!!

    On a side note, it was the second/third choice votes under ranked-choice voting which pushed him over the edge.

  • 27. allan120102  |  November 9, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    Breaking. Supreme court of Bolivia just gave a slap to trans marriages saying that the constitution only recognize the marriage between a man and a women. Such a disappointing decision.

  • 28. VIRick  |  November 10, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    Bolivia: TCP Declares Marriage Equality Unconstitutional and LGBT Groups Protest

    Bolivia: TCP Declara Inconstitucional Matrimonio Igualitario y Colectivos TGLB Protestan

    De Cochabamba, 10 de noviembre 2017:

    El jueves, 9 de noviembre 2017, la Sala Plena del Tribunal Constitucional Plurinacional (TCP) declaró inconstitucional el parágrafo II del Artículo 11 de la Ley de Identidad de Género, referida al ejercicio de los derechos fundamentales, políticos, laborales, civiles, económicos, y sociales de las personas que cambiaron de identidad de género, entre ellos, el matrimonio.

    El Tribunal Constitucional Plurinacional declara la inconstitucionalidad del parágrafo II del Artículo 11 de la Ley de Identidad de Género en su frase "… permitirá a la persona ejercer todos los derechos fundamentales, políticos, laborales, civiles, económicos, y sociales," establece la sentencia constitucional.

    "Lo que dice la sentencia, es que la primera parte de la ley es constitucional, porque se entiende, porque si bien no es un derecho, es parte de un concepto de identidad que está garantizada, protegida por la Constitución Política del Estado, por lo tanto, se admite que se pueda cambiar de nombre, imagen, y fotografía en el carnet de identidad," explicó el secretario general del Tribunal Constitucional Plurinacional (TCP), Álvaro Llanos.

    Precisó que esos cambios de datos generan nuevos derechos y dijo que esa situación aclara la sentencia al afirmar que el cambio de datos de sexo no conlleva necesariamente a ejercer todos los derechos. "Se puede cambiar todo en el carnet de identidad, pero no significa que se pueda contraer matrimonio entre un hombre y un transgénero o una mujer y un transgénero, porque se entiende que es un cambio de identidad," complementó.

    On Thursday, 9 November 2017, the Plenary Chamber of the Plurinational Constitutional Court (TCP) declared unconstitutional paragraph II of Article 11 of the Gender Identity Law, referring to the exercise of fundamental rights, political, labor, civil, economic, and social aspects, including marriage, for people who have changed their gender identity.

    The Plurinational Constitutional Court declares the unconstitutionality of paragraph II of Article 11 of the Gender Identity Law in this phrasing "… will allow the person to exercise all their fundamental rights, political, labor, civil, economic, and social," establishing the constitutional ruling.

    "What the ruling says, is that the first part of the law is constitutional, because it is understood, despite it not being a right, that it is part of a concept of identity that is guaranteed, protected by the Political Constitution of the State, so therefore, it is admitted that one can change one's name, image, and photograph on the identity card," explained the General Secretary of the Plurinational Constitutional Court (TCP), Álvaro Llanos.

    He said that these data changes generate new rights and said that this situation is clarified in the ruling by affirming that the change of sex data does not necessarily imply exercising all rights. "One can change everything on the identity card, but it does not mean that one can contract marriage between a man and a transgender or a woman and a transgender, because it is understood to only be a change of identity," he added.

  • 29. VIRick  |  November 9, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    The Process to Normalize Marriage Equality in Chiapas Has Already Begun

    Inicia Proceso para Normalizar Matrimonio Igualitario en Chiapas

    6 de noviembre 2017 – Tras haberse realizado las precisiones y modificaciones al Código Civil estatal conforme a la sentencia proferida la Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación (SCJN) del pasado 11 de julio de 2017, dentro de la Acción de Institucionalidad 32/2016, a partir de esta semana, comenzará formalmente el proceso de notificación a cada una de las oficialías del Registro Civil en Chiapas para normalizar los trámites de matrimonio civil entre parejas del mismo sexo en la entidad chiapaneca, sin necesidad de amparo judicial.

    Unidos Diferentes Asociación Civil (UDAC), organización gestora del matrimonio igualitario en Chiapas, dio a conocer que el Congreso estatal realizó ya desde hace algunas semanas las precisiones a los artículos 144 y 145 del Código Civil local mediante las que se da afecto a la sentencia de la SCJN sobre la invalidación de las porciones normativas que mantenían al matrimonio civil como un derecho exclusivo de las parejas heterosexuales.

    El Código Civil actualizado, que se encuentra ya disponible en portales oficiales del Congreso de Chiapas, detalla que conforme a lo establecido en la sentencia de la Acción de Inconstitucionalidad 32/2016 quedaron formalmente invalidadas las porciones normativas que hacían referencia a “la perpetuación de la especie” y el binomio de “hombre y mujer” como requisitos obligatorios para dar trámite al matrimonio civil.

    De esta manera, UDAC precisó que tras una reunión con la Dirección General del Registro Civil se informó que el proceso de notificación a cada una de las oficialías se realizará de manera progresiva durante el transcurso del presente mes de noviembre para comenzar a normalizarse durante las primeras semanas de diciembre.

    6 November 2017 – After having made the clarifications and amendments to the State Civil Code in accordance with the ruling handed down by the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJN) on 11 July 2017, resulting from the Action of Unconstitutionality, 32/2016, as of this week, the formal process of notification to each of the offices of the Civil Registry in Chiapas to normalize the procedures of civil marriage between same-sex couples in Chiapas state, without the need of an amparo, has begun.

    Unidos Diferentes Asociación Civil (UDAC), the organization that has pushed for marriage equality in Chiapas, announced that the State Congress has already made the necessary changes to Articles 144 and 145 of the State Civil Code, giving effect to the ruling of the SCJN which invalidated those portions that maintained civil marriage as an exclusive right of heterosexual couples.

    The updated Civil Code, which is already available from official sources of the Congress of Chiapas, details that according to what was established in the ruling on the Action of Unconstitutionality, 32/2016, those portions that made reference to "the perpetuation of the species" and the binomial of "man and woman" as obligatory requirements to process civil marriage have been altered.

    Thus, UDAC said that after a meeting with the General Directorate of the Civil Registry, they were informed that the process of notification to each of the offices will be made progressively during the course of November, to be implemented during the first weeks of December.

    Note: From all of the above, Chiapas is following the old-fashioned, formal, excessively drawn-out legal modification and notification procedure which since 2011 is no longer necessary, but which, obviously, in such a traditional, conservative area of Mexico, is the cautious procedure designed to appease the most stalwart of die-hards.

  • 30. VIRick  |  November 9, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Mexico: More Marriage Equality News

    In addition to the current happenings in Veracruz, Chiapas, and Zacatecas, we have:

    In Nuevo León, on 8 November 2017, an independent deputy, Jorge Blanco Durán, introduced a new marriage equality bill into the Nuevo León Congress.

    In Aguascalientes, on 8 November 2017, legislators there stuck the pending marriage equality bill "in the freezer" for the current year.

  • 31. VIRick  |  November 10, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    Costa Rica VP, Ana Helena Chacón,‏ at First Congress on Marriage Equality

    Costa Rica VP, Ana Helena Chacón‏, al Primer Congreso de Matrimonio Igualitario

    Today, 10 November 2017, the First Congress on Marriage Equality was addressed by Ana Helena Chacón‏, Vice-Presidenta de la República de Costa Rica, who stated positively:.

    "Creo en el amor, porque el amor construye. Parece mentira que para defender los DDHH hay que tener valentía y dejar la piel, atreviéndose a ser políticamente incorrecta."

    "I believe in love because love is constructive. It seems incredible that to defend human rights one has to have courage and leave your skin, daring one's self to be politically incorrect."

    Like the Vice-President of Panamá, the Vice-President of Costa Rica is positive in her affirmation in favor of marriage equality.

  • 32. VIRick  |  November 10, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    More Recent LGBT Election Wins


    College Park MD Mayor Patrick Wojahn, who’s gay, won election to a second term in office on Tuesday, 7 November 2017, finishing ahead of three challengers by a wide margin. Final but unofficial returns showed that Wojahn received 1,495 votes. Council member Mary Cook came in second place with 572 votes followed by candidates S.H. Tom Chen and Lalzarliani Malsawma receiving 351 votes and 98 votes respectively.

    Wojahn became College Park’s first out gay mayor when he was first elected to the mayoral post two years ago. Also winning re-election on Tuesday was College Park’s gay City Council member PJ Brennan, who finished ahead of four challengers.

    Washington State:

    Former US attorney Jenny Durkan won a competitive race Tuesday night to become the next mayor of Seattle, making her the city’s first lesbian mayor and Seattle’s first female mayor in nearly a century.

    According to the "Seattle Times," Durkan won the election by taking 60.6 percent of the vote compared to the 39.4 percent won by her opponent, Cary Moon.


    One US city has elected an entirely LGBT city council. After Tuesday’s historic US elections, Palm Springs CA now has a council made up of two gay men, Geoff Kors and JR Roberts, a transgender woman, Lisa Middleton, and a bisexual woman, Christy Holstege. The first two were re-elected, while the second two have just been elected for the first time.


    Pennsylvania also broke its trans barrier, as Tyler Titus, a trans man and father of two boys, became the first openly transgender person to be elected to any office anywhere in the state when he won a seat on the Erie PA City School Board.

    Per Rex Wockner:


    In addition to electing Danica Roem as the first transgender woman to the Virginia House of Delegates, and Hala Ayala and Elizabeth Guzman, as its first two Latina members, Virginia voters also elected their first Asian-American woman, Kathy Tran, D Fairfax County/Springfield, to the same body.

    North Carolina:

    Vi Lyles, Democrat, was elected as the next mayor of Charlotte NC, becoming its first black female mayor.


    In a non-partisan race, Wilmot Collins was elected mayor of Helena MT, becoming that state's first black mayor of any city anywhere in the entire state of Montana. In addition, as a refugee from Liberia, he also became that state's first African-born elected official.

    New Jersey:

    Ravi Bhalla, a Hoboken city council member, and an Indian-American civil rights lawyer, has been elected mayor of Hoboken NJ, becoming that state's first Sikh mayor.

  • 33. VIRick  |  November 10, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    More Trans Elected Officials

    In addition to the two Minneapolis City Council members, Phillipe Cunningham, a trans man of color, and Andrea Jenkins, a trans woman of color, who were just elected to seats in that city, we also have:


    Stephe Koontz has been elected to a seat on the Doraville GA city council.

    New Hampshire:

    Gerri Cannon has been elected as a member of the Somersworth NH School Board.


    Raven Matherne has been elected to be a member of the Stamford CT Board of Representatives, thus becoming that state's first openly trans lawmaker.

  • 34. guitaristbl  |  November 10, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    Could the sexual assault allegations against Roy Moore tilt the Alabama Senate race ? :

    On a personal note I consider it extremely unlikely. In the trump era anyone who is a liberal accused of something is automatically guilty while for every conservative accused of the same things it is always "fake news". And Alabama is an A student in the trump-like propaganda class. But who knows ?

  • 35. ianbirmingham  |  November 12, 2017 at 9:20 am

    Brett J. Talley, President Donald Trump’s nominee to be a federal judge in Alabama, has never tried a case, was unanimously rated “not qualified” by the American Bar Association’s judicial rating committee, has practiced law for only three years and, as a blogger last year, displayed a degree of partisanship unusual for a judicial nominee, denouncing “Hillary Rotten Clinton” and pledging support for the National Rifle Association. On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee, on a party-line vote, approved him for a lifetime appointment to the federal bench. …

    “He’s practiced law for less than three years and never argued a motion, let alone brought a case. … The Alliance for Justice, which tracks judicial nominees, said Trump’s team is off to a fast start, particularly when compared with Obama’s first year. By November 2009, Obama had made 27 judicial nominations, including Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Trump has nominated 59 people to the federal courts, including Justice Gorsuch. That’s also a contrast with Trump’s pace in filling executive branch jobs, where he has lagged far behind the pace of previous administrations.

    Liberal advocates are dismayed that Republicans have voted in unison on Trump’s judges. … On Thursday, the Judiciary Committee approved White House lawyer Greg Katsas on a 11-9 vote to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, and then approved Talley on another 11-9 vote. The nominations now move to the Senate floor where a similar party-line result is expected.

  • 36. Elihu_Bystander  |  November 13, 2017 at 4:42 am

    I Am Christian and I Am Gay

    Off Topic

    From time to time, bloggers on this site including this blogger have posted about non-Christian statements and actions by supposedly faithful Christians (e.g. bishops of the Catholic Church denying Eucharist and burial because of being LGBT—Springfield IL and Madison WI). One of the positions I frequently have to defend is why do I stay within the Church. My answer is I will not allow the ignorance of the institutional church to usurp my relationship with God. So, in that spirit, when I find support from an enlightened theologian, I wish to share that good news. I do not disparage the belief or non-belief of other bloggers on this site.

    Fr. Richard Rohr, OFM, is one of the great spiritual teachers of our day. He sends out a daily email to people around the globe, offering his spiritual wisdom to multitudes of people of many different faiths and denominations. Last week, his email touched on LGBT issues in some profound ways.

    “Sexuality and gender identity elicit so many strong feelings and even irrational opinions because they touch upon something foundational. If you don’t recognize the sacred at this deep level of identity and desire, I don’t know if you will be able to see it anywhere else. When Christians label LGBTQIA individuals as ‘other,’ sinful, or ‘disordered,’ we hurt these precious people and the larger community, and we actually limit ourselves. Fear of difference creates a very constricted, exclusive, and small religion and life, the very opposite of what God invites us into.”

    The naysayers think within such a limited sphere that they lose their ability to understand and appreciate people who are different than themselves.

    “Even as we acknowledge the sacredness of gender and sex, we also need to realize that there’s something deeper than our gender, anatomy, or physical passion: our ontological self, who we are forever in Christ. You are beyond the metaphor of male and female; you are a child of the Resurrection, a creature of Eternal Life. As Paul courageously puts it, ‘There is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus’ (Galatians 3:28). Those who have already begun to experience their divine union will usually find it very easy to be compassionate toward all ‘Two Spirit’ people because they know they share the same ontological, essential self that is ‘hidden with Christ in God’ (Colossians 3:3).”

    Food for thinking persons.

    From New Ways Ministry

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