POSTS WITH TAG: marriage equality

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    When California's controversial Prop 8 went to the Supreme Court last year, attorney Charles Cooper defended the state's ban on same-sex marriage. Meanwhile in his personal life, he was learning that his own daughter identified as LGBT.

    Now he's helping her plan her wedding to her lesbian partner this June. The couple plans to tie the knot in Massechusetts, one of 17 states (plus D.C.) where same-sex marriage is legally recognized. I guess you could say that things change.

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    Back in March, graham cracker makers Honey Maid revealed a campaign called This Is Wholesome featuring a same sex couple lovingly feeding their baby, an interracial family happily walking together, and a heavily tattooed mom hugging her child. People complained. This is NOT wholesome, some wrote. Disgusting, said others. The hate mail poured in and Honey Maid collected all of it.

    They asked two artists to take all the negative comments and transform them into something beautiful. My heart began racing wondering just what it is that they would do. And what they did ended up making me cry and also restored my faith that if we embrace hate with love, we can prevail. You must see this response. It's truly beautiful.

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    A judge in Michigan just ruled that its ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional, making gay marriage legal in the state. This makes Michigan the 17th state (not counting D.C.) to allow same-sex unions. Oklahoma, Texas, Virginia and Utah also overturned bans, but appeals on those decisions were put in right away, making marriage in those states still technically illegal. Still, this a huge step forward a long time in the make. 

    While the decision was widely applauded and supporters by voters in Michigan, there are still those who seek to protest and appeal the decision. However, surprisingly, this judge's decision wasn't made pending appeal -- which means that the first gay couple in Michigan has already tied the knot! This is awesome news. I hope Michigan serves as an example to other states in the union. Gay marriage should be the rule, not the exception. 

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    This is galling.

    Rep. Michele Bachmann is in the news again, and her latest comments definitely made my blood pressure rise. The fact that she has even the limited amount of power she does is continually unfathomable. Bachmann is continually sticking her foot in her mouth and pushing a deeply restrictive and conservative agenda.

    She's in the news this week talking about the bill in Arizona that would have allowed business owners to refuse service to gay customers. Thankfully, the bill was shot down.

    But Michele is still seething about it and she's talking to anyone who will listen. The way she sees it, straight Americans have been "bullied" by gay Americans for long enough. This bill tanking is just more proof of that. Excuse me while I ralph up my indignation into a bucket I have reserved solely for this purpose.

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    On Sunday, just as the Oscars were rolling out the red carpet, there was a whole other kind of show taking place on an Army base in Japan. Gay and lesbian members of the Army were participating in a drag show, which was thrown to raise money for OutServe-SLDN, a support group for LGBT members of the Army's community.

    The folks heading up the group and the event itself were bowled over by the response it received. They were initially wary, thinking that there wasn't much of a demand for such an event. They were worried it wouldn't raise the sort of funds they hoped for. So imagine their surprise when instead of selling 75 tickets -- they wound up selling just over 400!

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    A year after offering $65 million to any man willing to marry his lesbian daughter, a Hong Kong tycoon is desperate to find a suitor and has doubled his sum. Now, Cecil Chao Sze-tsung is willing to dish out a casual $120 million to any man who can romance his daughter Gigi.

    Gigi Chao, who is 34 and has been with her wife Sean Eav for more than nine years, responded to her father's latest proposal with an emotional open letter in the South China Morning Post. In Gigi's sad plea to her dad, she talks about how admirable he is as a businessman but how foolish he's been in matters of the heart.

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    This is so innocent and sweet, it's impossible not to just love it to pieces. In Australia, a 4-year-old girl wrote a letter to the prime minister, Tony Abbott, asking him to "let boys marry boys and girls marry girls," in an effort to persuade him to recognize gay marriage Down Under.

    Sabrina Franco was inspired to reach out to the prime minister after learning that her mother's friends, a gay male couple, had to go all the way to New York to be married. Same-sex marriages are neither recognized nor performed in Australia.

    Sabrina's plea gets straight to the point, and it's really so, so simple.

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    When a pastor went on trial this fall for officiating at his gay son's 2007 wedding, I thought surely love would win the day. But nope! That was naive of me, and anyone else who thought the same. Pennsylvania pastor Frank Schaefer has been defrocked. United Methodist officials told Schaefer to either resign from the clergy or follow the church's Book of Discipline to the letter. The pastor refused both, saying the Book of Discipline discriminates against gay people. He doesn't want to give up on his church, either.

    Rather than walk away, Schaefer is determined to make change from within his church. "I am actively committing to having those discriminatory laws changed and banished from our Book of Discipline. That's the only way I can reconcile being a United Methodist at this point." Not only that, Schaefer is taking Jesus' teachings to heart in his refusal to resign.

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    Those of you who've always been curious to see what it's like to be a sister-wife, now is your big chance. A federal circuit court ruling has made polygamy in Utah practically legal! Okay, you still CANNOT get more than one marriage license. That's still illegal. This ruling just makes it a whole lot easier for families to practice polygamy. But before you decide this heralds the End of Civilization as We Know It, let's talk about why this may actually be great news.

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    In a story that now sounds all too familiar, a cake shop owner in Colorado is under legal fire for turning away a gay couple. Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips told Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Fox & Friends that he'd actually rather go to jail than make a cake for a same-sex wedding, per a judge's order.

    Phillips' rationale: "I do what I do because I love doing what I do and I believe it's what God's designed for me to do. I don't plan on giving up my religious beliefs ... I don't feel that I should participate in their wedding, and when I do a cake, I feel like I'm participating in the ceremony or the event or the celebration that the cake is for." Ugh. This is so ridiculously twisted ... and sad ... not to mention, illegal!

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