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SCOTUS will release more decisions Monday, June 1


SCOTUSBlog is reporting that the Supreme Court will issue decisions in argued cases Monday. There are 25 cases left and no way to know which ones or how many will be released. We’ll report back when we know.


  • 1. ianbirmingham  |  May 29, 2020 at 2:39 pm

    Diana Ross didn’t know ‘I’m Coming Out’ was ‘a gay thing’

    “I’m Coming Out,” the second single, was inspired after [co-producer Nile] Rodgers saw a bunch of “Diana Ross impersonators” in the bathroom at GG’s Barnum Room, a predominantly transgender club in midtown Manhattan. “All of a sudden a lightbulb goes off in my head,” he says. “I had to go outside and call Bernard [Edwards, the other co-producer] from a telephone booth. I said, ‘Bernard, please write down the words: ‘I’m coming out.’ And then I explained the situation to him.”

    Ross immediately loved the song, connecting with the empowering lyrics: “The time has come for me to break out of this shell/I have to shout that I am coming out.” “But she didn’t understand that that was a gay thing, that that was a person saying, ‘I’m coming out of the closet,’ ” says Rodgers. “She didn’t even get that.”

    At least not until Ross played the song for influential WBLS DJ Frankie Crocker. “He thought that that would be Diana saying that she was gay,” says Rodgers.

    But Rodgers convinced the singer to stick with the song anyway, selling it as the perfect concert opener to make a regal entrance for the rest of her life. “I said, ‘Diana, this song is gonna be your coming-out song. We think of you as our black queen,’ ” he says. “And I even wrote a [horn] fanfare. I explained to her that it’s just like when the president comes out and they play ‘Hail to the Chief.’ ”

  • 2. VIRick  |  May 31, 2020 at 3:33 pm

    Puerto Rico: Governor Will Announce Tomorrow Her Decision on the Civil Code

    Per LGBT Marriage News:

    Puerto Rico: Wanda Vázquez Informará Mañana su Decisión sobre el Código Civil

    La gobernadora Wanda Vázquez Garced anunciará mañana, lunes, el 1 de junio, si vetará el proyecto de Código Civil o si, por el contrario, estampará su firma en la medida legislativa que ha recibido el rechazo de miembros de la comunidad civil, así como de juristas, ante posibles/probables vicios de inconstitucionalidad.

    Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced will announce tomorrow, Monday, 1 June, if she will veto the draft Civil Code or if, on the contrary, she will stamp her signature on the legislative measure that has received the rejection of members of the civil community, as well as jurists, before possible/likely charges of unconstitutionality.

    Among other legal difficulties, although the new Civil Code will for the first time recognize same-sex marriage in law, per the 2016 mandate of the First Circuit Court of Appeals in "Conde-Vidal v. Rius-Armendariz," this same Civil Code simultaneously regresses on gender recognition for transgender individuals, in direct contradiction to a sweeping 2018 federal court ruling in "Arroyo-González v. Rosselló-Nevares" against the government of Puerto Rico, one which requires gender recognition per self-declared gender identity on all government-issued documents, like birth certificates and driver's licenses, and essentially, one which is in accord with the CIDH ruling on gender identity, even though the USA/Puerto Rico are not signatory members to that agreement.

  • 3. VIRick  |  June 2, 2020 at 9:15 pm

    Puerto Rico: Governor Signs New Civil Code

    On 1 June 2020, Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vázquez signed the new Civil Code that LGBTQ activists have sharply criticized. Among other legal difficulties, one finds the regression on transgender rights to be the most glaring, given that it is in direct contravention to federal court orders, as already outlined in the post immediately above. As a result, expect lawsuits challenging its constitutionality.

    In addition, Pedro Julio Serrano, founder of Puerto Rico Para [email protected], a Puerto Rican LGBTQ advocacy group, in a statement also noted that the new Civil Code does not specifically mention LGBTQ Puerto Ricans. “They removed the discrimination bans in order not to include sexual orientation and gender identity,” said Serrano. As a result, expect more lawsuits.

    However, on the plus side, although about 5 years late, the official recognition of same-sex marriage has finally been cemented into Puerto Rican law with the signing of this new Civil Code.

  • 4. VIRick  |  May 31, 2020 at 3:52 pm

    Portugal: 10th Anniversary of Marriage Equality

    Per Isabel Santos, Deputada europeia:

    Today, 31 May 2020, Portugal celebrates 10 years of the law that allows same-sex marriages. I am proud to have been among the members of Parliament who approved it. There is still a lot to be done regarding LGBTI rights in Europe.

  • 5. ianbirmingham  |  June 1, 2020 at 1:07 am

    Argentina makes history with first-ever transgender news anchor on prime time’s Televisión Pública

    Argentina just reached a major milestone for equality with its first ever transgender news anchor Diana Zurco.

    She hopes her visible presence on TV screens across Argentina will serve as vital representation in a country where the average life expectancy of trans people is just 41 years, roughly half that of the general population.

    “My presence challenges society,” she told The Associated Press in an interview.

    Argentina’s government estimates that the country has between 12,000 and 13,000 transgender adults out of a population that exceeds 44 million.

    Legislative changes such as the Gender Identity Law of 2012 are making life easier for Argentina’s transgender population, but opportunities are still few, and until now the only transgender women on Argentine television have largely been limited to entertainment programmes or soap operas.

    “It is a small group and ordinary people don’t know a trans firsthand. This lack of connection in daily life fuels prejudice and discrimination,” said Esteban Paulón, executive director of the Institute for LGBT Public Policies.

    He’s hopeful that Zurco’s presence as a newscaster “will let prejudiced society begin to see that trans people are like everyone else.”

  • 6. VIRick  |  June 1, 2020 at 9:29 am

    The Dominican Republic has had a transsexual television news presenter for a number of years. In fact, said individual was the lead petitioner for a group of 35 individuals who had requested an executive decree for a legal name-change, and one which was granted two years ago. Here is what I wrote about that landmark decision at that time:

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

    El 12 de junio 2018, Presidente Danilo Medina Sánchez decreta cambiar nombre a transexual, Mía Cepeda, la primera en la historia dominicana en hacerlo vía legal.

    On 12 June 2018, President Danilo Medina Sánchez issues 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 of whom had previously petitioned the government for name-change, including the very visible Dominican TV news presenter, Mía Cepeda:

    Mía Cepeda Promueve Derechos de Comunidad LGTB al Cambiar de Nombre

    Santo Domingo – La presentadora de televisión Mía Cepeda manifestó a Telenoticias que no fue hasta en el gobierno de Danilo Medina Sánchez que logró cambiarse de nombre, al referir que en su condición de transexual no pudo lograrlo en mandatos anteriores. Muy complicado fue el camino para que hoy Mía Fernanda Cepeda, pudiera dejar atrás su antiguo de nombre de Fernando Martín Cepeda Marte, bajo el decreto presidencial 76-14, en el que también se beneficiaron 35 personas que deseaban cambiarse el nombre.

    Mía Cepeda Promotes LGBT Community Rights by Changing Her Name

    Santo Domingo – The television presenter Mía Cepeda told Telenoticias that it was not until the government of Danilo Medina Sánchez that she managed to change her name, saying that as a transsexual she could not achieve it during previous administrations. The way was very complicated for Mía Fernanda Cepeda, who today could leave behind her old name of Fernando Martín Cepeda Marte, under presidential decree 76-14, one which also benefited 35 people who desired to change their name.

    Fittingly enough, the issuance of this presidential decree came on the 2nd anniversary of the Pulse Night Club shooting in Orlando which slaughtered 49 individuals, mostly LGBTs, 24 of whom were from Puerto Rico, with most of the rest from other Latin countries, the second-largest number being from the Dominican Republic.

  • 7. JayJonson  |  June 1, 2020 at 11:51 am

    None of the cases decided today seem to be gay rights cases.

  • 8. VIRick  |  June 1, 2020 at 6:32 pm

    Okayama, Japan, to Issue Certificates Recognizing Same-Sex Partnerships

    Per LGBT Marriage News:

    On Monday, 1 June 2020, the city of Okayama said it will issue certificates recognizing same-sex partnership, starting from 1 July, to couples living in or planning to move to the city. It will join nearly 50 other local governments in Japan issuing similar certificates to LGBT couples, and will offer benefits such as allowing them to apply for public housing. Same-sex marriage is not legally recognized and the certificates are not legally valid.

    Okayama has also agreed with Soja, another city in Okayama Prefecture, to mutually recognize their certificates and eliminate the need for new procedures when LGBT couples move between the two cities. It has also reached a similar agreement with the city of Hiroshima and is considering one with the city of Takamatsu, Kagawa Prefecture.

  • 9. VIRick  |  June 1, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    Veracruz: An "Action of Unconstitutionality" Forthcoming on Gender Neutral Cohabitation

    Luego de la aprobación del Código Civil en Veracruz que reconoció "el concubinato de dos personas," activistas y organizaciones a favor de los derechos LGBTI buscarán interponer un litigio estratégico de buscar una vía de inconstitucionalidad con la Suprema Corte de Justicia.

    Yazz Bustamante, activista por los derechos LGBTI, señaló que el concubinato da el mismo reconocimiento que el contrato patrimonial del matrimonio, la única diferencia con esto es que vas al Registro Civil y firmas el contrato, mientras con el concubinato no pasa eso, pero los derechos son reconocidos.

    After the approval of the Civil Code in Veracruz that recognizes "cohabitation of two persons," activists and organizations in favor of LGBTI rights will seek to bring strategic litigation to obtain an issuance of unconstitutionality from the Supreme Court of Justice.

    Yazz Bustamante, activist for LGBTI rights, pointed out that cohabitation gives the same recognition as that of the hetero marriage contract, the only difference being that one goes to the Civil Registry and signs the contract, whereas with cohabitation that does not happen, but the rights are recognized.

  • 10. VIRick  |  June 2, 2020 at 10:07 pm

    Guatemala: First "Pride" March Remembered

    Per Renato de Guatemala:

    El primer "pride" en Guatemala en octubre 1997 fue una caminata desde la misa fúnebre de María Conchita, mujer trans, trabajadora sexual, hasta el lugar en que fue asesinada en la 5ta Avenida de la Zona 1 en la Ciudad de Guatemala. El "pride" aquí y en todo el mundo tiene un origen violento. No lo olvidemos.

    The first "pride" in Guatemala in October 1997 was a walk from the funeral mass of María Conchita, transgender woman, sex worker, to the place where she was murdered on 5th Avenue in Zone 1 in Guatemala City. "Pride" here and around the world has a violent origin. Let us not forget it.

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