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Discrimination

This morning, the Supreme Court released four opinions in argued cases. One of the earliest argued cases of the term that’s still pending is Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, involving the city’s decision to stop referring foster parents to Catholic Social Services over their opposition to placing children in homes with same-sex parents.

That case was argued on November 4, 2020, so there was speculation it would be decided soon. However, the Court today took no action in the case.

The Court’s term typically ends before July 4, so there are several more opportunities for the decision to come down.

18 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. VIRick  |  May 17, 2021 at 8:51 pm

    Idaho: Sex Offender Registry for Sodomy Convictions Challenged in Federal Court

    Today, eight states still have (non-gender-specific) anti-sodomy laws on the books but only three of those states, Idaho, Mississippi, and South Carolina, have laws requiring sex offender registration for people convicted of sodomy, said Matthew Strugar, one of Randall Menges’s lawyers, the same lawyer for the same plaintiff convicted of a sodomy offense in Idaho in 1994, but who subsequently moved to Montana, only to discover that he needed to register as a sex offender in Montana because of the Idaho conviction. The Montana law requiring such sex offender registration, based on an out-of-state conviction for an act that is not illegal in Montana, was deemed unconstitutional in federal court in Montana on 11 May 2021..

    In September 2020, Mr. Strugar, along with the ACLU of Idaho, also filed a second federal lawsuit challenging Idaho’s law on behalf of Mr. Menges and another man who was forced to register as a sex offender because he was convicted 20 years ago in another state for performing oral sex on his wife.

    Prosecutors in Montana had argued that until the Idaho case was resolved, Mr. Menges had no right to file a complaint in Montana. But on Tuesday, 11 May 2021, Judge Dana L. Christensen said that the Montana statute that required Mr. Menges to register as a sex offender had caused him “significant” hardships, like being denied housing and employment, and was thus deemed to be unconstitutional.

    The federal challenge in the lawsuit filed against the Idaho law on behalf of the same plaintiff remains pending.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/05/15/us/randall-men

  • 2. Elihu_Bystander  |  May 18, 2021 at 8:45 am

    "on Tuesday, 11 May 2021, Judge Dana L. Christensen said that the Montana statute that required Mr. Menges to register as a sex offender had caused him “significant” hardships, like being denied housing and employment, and was thus deemed to be unconstitutional."

    "Almost immediately after the ruling, the Montana attorney general, Austin Knudsen, a Republican, said he planned to appeal it." NY Times

    Both Montana and Idaho are in the ninth circuit. If the appellate court sustains the district court, that would make it circuit president. However, the ninth circuit now has ten judges appointed by Trump.

  • 3. VIRick  |  May 18, 2021 at 12:50 pm

    France: 8th Anniversary of Marriage Equality

    Per Políticas LGBT:

    El 18 de mayo de 2013, luego de un período de mucho debate, el ex presidente de Francia, François Hollande, como prometio en campaña, promulgó el matrimonio igualitario con todos los derechos, para todo el territorio francés en cualquier parte del mundo.
    https://twitter.com/PoliticasLGBT

    On 18 May 2013, after a period of much debate, the former president of France, François Hollande, as per the campaign promise, promulgated marriage equality with all rights, for all French territory anywhere in the world, to include:

    Metropolitan France including Corsica
    St-Pierre-et-Miquelon (North America)
    Martinique (Caribbean)
    Guadeloupe
    Marie-Galante
    Iles-des-Saintes
    La Désirade
    St-Martin
    St-Barthélemy
    Guyane Français (South America)
    Ile Réunion (Indian Ocean)
    Ile Mayotte
    Nouvelle Caledonie (Pacific Ocean)
    Wallis-et-Futuna
    Polynesie Français

  • 4. VIRick  |  May 18, 2021 at 1:42 pm

    Costa Rica Marriage Equality Up-Date for Its First Year

    Per "El Observador:"

    884 parejas del mismo sexo se casaron durante el primer año de matrimonio igualitario. Las uniones, según el Registro Civil, se dividen de la siguiente manera:

    Totales: 884
    En Proceso de Inscipción: 15
    Denegados: 0
    Matrimonios Locales: 795
    Matrimonios en el Extranjero: 104
    https://observador.cr/si-acepto-884-parejas-del-m

    884 same-sex couples were married during the first year of marriage equality. The unions, according to the Civil Registry, are divided as follows:

    Totals: 884
    Registrations in Process: 15
    Denied: 0
    Marriages Performed in Costa Rica: 795
    Marriages Performed Abroad (and Now Registered in Costa Rica): 104

    The Costa Rica court ruling in favor of marriage equality took effect from 26 May 2020.

  • 5. VIRick  |  May 18, 2021 at 3:46 pm

    US State Department Finally Up-Dates Birthright Citizenship Policy

    On Tuesday, 18 May 2021, the US State Department said that it will now grant US citizenship to children born abroad to parents who used artificial reproductive technology, including surrogacy, notifying Congress and diplomatic posts of the change to longstanding policy.

    The decision allows same-sex and heterosexual couples to transfer US citizenship to their baby, as long as one parent is a US citizen, the child has a genetic or gestational tie to (either) one of the parents, and they meet all other requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Previous policy had dictated that the child must have a genetic or gestational tie to the US citizen parent.

    The policy change, which is effective immediately, "will be retroactively applied to anyone who feels that they have a change in circumstance due to this change," according to a State Department official. That will smooth the path for a number of same-sex couples who sued the Department after their children were denied birthright citizenship because they were considered "born out of wedlock" and thus ineligible. The State Department official said that the new policy does not require legal changes, and instead, is a re-interpretation of application of the 1952 law to reflect modern realities.
    https://edition.cnn.com/2021/05/18/politics/state

    One can read the full US State Department press release here:
    https://www.state.gov/u-s-citizenship-transmissio

  • 6. VIRick  |  May 18, 2021 at 5:44 pm

    Ireland: 6th Anniversary of Marriage Equality Plebiscite

    Per Embassy of Ireland in Chile:

    El 22 de mayo del 2015, Irlanda votó en plebiscito a favor del matrimonio igualitario.
    https://twitter.com/IrlEmbChile/status/1394802512

    On 22 May 2015, Ireland voted in favor of marriage equality in a plebiscite.

  • 7. VIRick  |  May 18, 2021 at 9:14 pm

    Alabama Anti-Transgender Healthcare Bill Fails

    Alabama’s SB 10 failed to come up for a vote in the state House prior to that chamber’s session finishing on 18 May 2021, thus ending the bill’s chances of becoming law this year. Also known as the “Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act,” the bill would have banned transgender youth from accessing gender-affirming healthcare, including talk therapy, and would have required teachers to out children who may be trans to their parents.

    SB 10 had passed the Alabama Senate in March. In addition to not allowing trans youth to receive access to gender-affirming healthcare prior to the age of 19, the bill also called for providing “disclosure of certain information concerning students to parents by schools” if they learned that a child may identify as transgender.

    The Republican-majority House had the bill on their agenda for days, but it never came to a vote before that body within the allotted time. Still, In April, Alabama did pass a bill, now law, that bans transgender girls from sports.
    https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2021/05/alabama-bill-

  • 8. VIRick  |  May 19, 2021 at 8:43 am

    Namibia Finally Issues Travel Documents to Gay Couple's Children

    On Tuesday, 18 May 2021, Namibia issued emergency travel documents to the twin daughters of a gay couple who have been battling to take them home following their birth to a surrogate in South Africa, one of the fathers told Reuters.

    Namibian Phillip Luhl and his Mexican husband, Guillermo Delgado, had already been fighting for citizenship for their two-year-old son when the twins, born in March, were refused the documents required to enter Namibia. Namibian authorities have said that Luhl must prove a genetic link to the children.

    The fathers had taken the Home Affairs ministry to Namibia's High Court over the matter, but it ruled against them in April. They responded with a second urgent application requesting the court compel the Home Affairs ministry to issue their daughters with documents. Under a new Home Affairs minister, Albert Kawana, appointed in a cabinet reshuffle later in April, the ministry opted not to oppose the application. Instead, Kawana instructed the department to issue the twins with emergency travel documents that will allow them to enter Namibia, but not leave, Luhl said

    The couple's son, Yona, was issued with an emergency passport two weeks ago, and they would now seek the same for the twins, Luhl continued.
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/namibia-issu

  • 9. VIRick  |  May 19, 2021 at 2:36 pm

    Chile: 8 LGBTI Candidates Elected to the 155-Seat Constituent Assembly

    Per Caribe Afirmativo:

    Siguen sumándose buenas noticias de Chile. Sumado a las 8 personas LGBTI elegidas para la Asamblea Constituyente, el conteo de votos confirma una alcaldesa abiertamente lesbiana y 14 concejalas y concejales de los procesos de la diversidad en las diferentes regiones del país.
    https://twitter.com/Caribeafirmativ

    Good news from Chile continues to accumulate. In addition to the 8 LGBTI persons elected to the Constituent Assembly, the vote count also confirms an openly lesbian mayor and 14 council members of diversity elected in the different regions of the country.

    The Constituent Assembly, now elected, is the body tasked with re-writing Chile's Constitution, to replace the current 1980 constitution, written and promulgated during the dictatorship, with one that is far more progressive.

  • 10. VIRick  |  May 22, 2021 at 10:20 am

    Chile: 8 LGBTI Candidates Elected to the 155-Seat Constituent Assembly

    Como un hecho histórico para los derechos de la diversidad sexual y de género, calificaron los activistas y organizaciones LGBTQ el resultado de las elecciones del pasado fin de semana en Chile, donde ocho postulantes abiertamente queer fueron electos para escribir la nueva Constitución de ese país latinoamericano.

    Se trata de Jennifer Mella, Valentina Miranda, Bessy Gallardo, Pedro Muñoz, Javier Fuchslocher, Gaspar Domínguez, Rodrigo Rojas, y Tomás Laibe, quienes representan el 5,2 por ciento del total de 155 escaños que formarán la Convención Constituyente.
    https://www.washingtonblade.com/2021/05/20/elecci

    LGBTQ activists and organizations described the result of the elections last weekend in Chile as an historic benchmark for the rights of sexual and gender diversity, where eight openly queer candidates were elected to write the new Constitution of that Latin American country.

    It is comprised of Jennifer Mella, Valentina Miranda, Bessy Gallardo, Pedro Muñoz, Javier Fuchslocher, Gaspar Domínguez, Rodrigo Rojas, and Tomás Laibe, who represent 5.2 percent of the total 155 seats that will form the Constituent Assembly.

  • 11. VIRick  |  May 19, 2021 at 8:47 pm

    Pennsylvania: Transgender/Non-Binary Candidate Has Historic Primary Win

    Tyler Titus has won the Democratic primary for county executive in Erie County, and is on track to become the first out transgender person to hold such a post in the nation. Titus, who is trans, gender-queer, and non-binary, was declared the winner of Tuesday's primary on Wednesday afternoon, 19 May 2021.

    Titus, a mental health counselor, already made history when they were elected to the Erie School Board in 2017, becoming the first out transgender elected official in Pennsylvania. Titus is currently board president and one of only nine out non-binary elected officials in the US. The city of Erie is the county seat for Erie County, located in northwestern Pennsylvania, the 15th-most-populous county in the state.
    https://www.advocate.com/politics/2021/5/19/trans

  • 12. VIRick  |  May 19, 2021 at 9:03 pm

    Nebraska: 3 of 7 Lincoln City Council Members Are LGBT

    LGBTQ history has been made in Lincoln, the capital city of Nebraska. After the swearing-in on 17 May 2021 of the new Lincoln City Council members, three of the seven members are now from the LGBTQ community, and one of them was elected council chair, the first out official to hold that position.

    James Michael Bowers, a gay man who became the first out member of the city council when he was elected in May 2019, was elected chair at Monday’s meeting, the LGBTQ Victory Fund reports. Sändra Washington, a lesbian, and Tom Beckius, a gay man, were also sworn-in at the meeting.

    Washington and Beckius were the top two vote-getters for three open council seats in the 4 May 2021 election. Washington had been appointed to fill a vacant seat on the council in June 2019, so this was her first time being elected, while Beckius is new to the council. Washington is the first Black lesbian elected to any public office in Nebraska, and she, Bowers, and Beckius now represent one-third of all out elected officials in the entire state.
    https://www.advocate.com/politics/2021/5/18/histo

  • 13. ianbirmingham  |  May 20, 2021 at 1:49 pm

    Stephen King: J.K. Rowling 'cancelled' me after I said 'trans women are women'

    Stephen King has claimed J.K. Rowling 'cancelled him' after the U.S. horror author said 'trans women are women'. The Harry Potter author, 55, deleted a tweet declaring her love for King in June last year and blocked him after he voiced his support for transgender women. Now King, 73, has claimed the pair fell out after Rowling 'cancelled him' and said he believes her views on trans people are 'wrong'.

    King had shared a quote with his 5.9 million followers, and Rowling then tweeted that her love for the author had reached 'new heights.' She added: 'I've always revered Stephen King, but today my love reached – maybe not Annie Wilkes levels – but new heights. 'It's so much easier for men to ignore women's concerns, or to belittle them, but I won't ever forget the men who stood up when they didn't need to. Thank you, Stephen.'

    King was then asked for clarification on his views by a fan, who said: 'You should address the TERF tweet. By telling us constant readers if you believe trans women are women.'

    He replied: 'Yes. Trans women are women.'

    Following his comment, Rowling deleted her post praising the author.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9599747/

  • 14. VIRick  |  May 20, 2021 at 3:52 pm

    Tennessee: Anti-Transgender Medical Bill Signed into Law, #5 in the "Slate of Hate"

    If one understands the latest hateful idiocy from the Tennessee legislature, an invented "problem" of their own making has just been "solved" by their passage of SB 126. One suspects that they will now crow to the rubes back home as to how they "saved the youth" by banning a practice which is not actually done, but which instead will be twisted and trumpeted as something of actual substance, when in fact, it is nothing more than an artificial pretense without merit.

    Of course, this interpretation does not rule out the very real possibility that the legislators are truly clueless, and simply took up a "nice-sounding" bill already prepared for them by the ADF.

    Per the "Washington Blade:"

    On Tuesday, 18 May 2021, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed Senate Bill 126, one which bans gender-affirming medical care for (pre-pubescent) transgender youth. The measure prohibits medical and healthcare professionals from prescribing puberty blockers or hormone therapy (for pre-pubescent youth, a practice which is not done on children that young).

    Per the Tennessee Equality Project:

    Governor Lee signed the discriminatory SB126. It’s not a ban on gender-affirming care for trans youth who have entered puberty. It bans that health care before puberty, which health care providers are not doing. The point of it was to be a slap in the face, along with it being a threat of possible future restrictions.”

    The TNEQP then went on to note “We don’t normally put health care protocols into the (state) code. But this bill says that the state doesn’t trust trans youth, their parents, and their physicians.”
    https://www.washingtonblade.com/2021/05/20/tennes

  • 15. ianbirmingham  |  May 20, 2021 at 4:53 pm

    The Singapore Government Is Pissed at the US Embassy After It Met With Gay Rights Activists

    Singapore told the U.S. embassy “not to interfere” in local matters after it hosted a webinar for LGBTQ advocates in a country that still outlaws gay sex.

    The invitation-only webinar was held to mark International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia on May 17, a date commemorating a World Health Organization decision to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder in 1990.

    Despite being one of the most developed countries in the world, Singapore maintains a hard line on LGBTQ rights despite progressive victories in other parts of Asia. Gay marriage isn’t recognized and even opposition politicians remain silent about support. Sex between men, even if it’s private and consensual, is also criminalized under a colonial-era law.

    Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong previously called the law an “uneasy compromise” as society “was not that liberal”. A Singapore court dismissed an appeal to overturn the legislation last year.

    “The U.S. Embassy [in Singapore] regularly works with civil society partners on a wide range of issues to build awareness and advance the human rights of all persons,” the [US Embassy] spokesperson said.

    “We will continue to promote human rights of LGBTQI+ persons worldwide.”

    https://www.vice.com/en/article/k78be3/singapore-

  • 16. VIRick  |  May 20, 2021 at 8:38 pm

    Chile: Captain of Women's National Futbol Team Marries her Chilean Wife — in France

    Per La France au Chili:

    Felicitamos a Christiane Endler y a su esposa, Sofía Orozco, quienes pudieron casarse hoy, el 20 mayo 2021, en Francia, gracias a la ley del 2013 que permite el matrimonio igualitario (en Francia).
    https://twitter.com/ambafrancecl/status/139546142

    We congratulate Christiane Endler and her wife, Sofia Orozco, who were able to marry today, 20 May 2021, in France, thanks to the 2013 law that allows for marriage equality (in France).

  • 17. VIRick  |  May 22, 2021 at 10:56 am

    Tamaulipas: One-Man Take-Over of State Congress by LGBT Activist

    Per México Igualitario:

    Celebramos y respaldamos este acto de Mercurius Espinoza del 21 de mayo 2021, integrante de México Igualitario nodo Tamaulipas, quien valientemente acudió al Congreso de Tamualipas para exigir sus derechos.
    https://twitter.com/mx_igualitario?lang=en

    We celebrate and support this act by Mercurius Espinoza of 21 May 2021, a member of México Igualitario, Tamaulipas node, who bravely confronted the Tamaulipas Congress to demand his rights.

    As one can see from the video, Mercurius Espinoza, with large rainbow flag draped from the balcony, single-handedly addressed the assembled congress members gathered below, in a loud and forceful manner from said balcony, demanding his rights.

    Only one state deputy, Edna Rivera López (Morena), eventually joined him, and continued the lecturing, but this time, from the podium.

  • 18. ianbirmingham  |  May 24, 2021 at 6:19 pm

    Florida: Boynton Beach, Delray Beach installing LGBTQ-inspired streetscapes

    Click through for photos!

    https://www.sun-sentinel.com/community/fl-cn-pbc-

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