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ACLU Files Lawsuit in Michigan to Recognize 300 Legally Married Same-Sex Couples

April 15th, 2014 Comments off
Picture via Passport

Picture via Passport

The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan has filed a lawsuit today so that the legal marriages of 300 tqy and lesbian couples performed in Michigan last month are recognized by the state. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of eight same-sex couples who were married after a federal judge struck down the state’s ban and before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals put the decision on hold. “As a matter of law and fundamental fairness, the state is obligated to extend the protections that flow from marriage to all those who celebrated their weddings last month,” said Kary L. Moss, ACLU of Michigan executive director. “Doing anything less treats legally married gay and lesbian couples like second-class citizens, and adds to the confusion and instability these loving families have endured.”

The lawsuit argues that once same-sex couples are legally married in Michigan, they gain protections that cannot be taken away retroactively. Furthermore, the U.S. Constitution compels state officials to recognize those protections regardless of the ultimate outcome of the appeal of Judge Friedman’s ruling.

We have the full backstory after the jump in case you forgot….

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Tom Ford Marries Longtime Partner in the US

April 8th, 2014 Comments off
Image via Joe Seer

Image via Joe Seer

Famed designer Tom Ford married his longtime partner, Richard Buckley, in the United States, he revealed in an informal chat with Lady Kinvara Balfour at a Regent Street Apple Store. ”We are now married, which is nice,” he said while showing his wedding ring to the crowd. “I know that was just made legal in the UK, which is great, but we were married in the States. Ford and Buckley have been together for 27 years and first met in an elevator when Ford was 25 and Buckley was a 38-year-old editor at Women’s Wear Daily. [Tel]

 

Gay Russian Couple Marries and Seeks Asylum in Argentina

April 7th, 2014 Comments off
Image via BA Herald

Alexander Emereev and Dmitry Zaytsev (R). Image via BA Herald

Two Russian men recently married in Buenos Aires, Argentina are now seeking asylum in the South American country claiming extreme discrimination if they were to return home. A large crowd gathered at the civil registry in the San Nicolas neighborhood to celebrate their union, as well as draw attention to the need for countries to protect gay and lesbian Russians. The Buenos Aires Herald describes the wedding: “Dressed in matching outfits, which featured pinned-on flowers with the colors of the Russian flag, they walked hand-in-hand, their eyes fixated on the doors of the marriage office, in an act that could be considered a criminal offense in modern Russia, where a law prohibiting “gay propaganda” was passed just last year, effectively prohibiting anyone from acknowledging being part of a sexual minority.”

“They’ve come to seek political asylum. They can’t go back to Russia because they’ll be arrested,” explained gay-rights activist Alex Freyre who wed the first gay couple in Argentina in December 2009.

Argentina’s National Commission for Refugees will review the couple’s case.

The US Supreme Court will Not Hear Case Involving Photographer who Refused to Work Gay Wedding

April 7th, 2014 Comments off
Screen Shot via YouTube.

Screen Shot via YouTube.

The United States Supreme Court announced today that it will not take up a case involving a New Mexico photography business that claims their rights were violated after they refused to photograph a same-sex wedding in New Mexico. The case, Elane Photography v. Willock, was included in a list of cases that it will not be heard with no additional comment. According to the Washington Blade, “The case was brought to the Supreme Court by Elane Photography, which was found to have violated New Mexico’s anti-discrimination law for refusing to take a photo for the same-sex wedding ceremony for Vanessa Willock and Misti Collinsworth in 2006. (The wedding was only ceremonial because the incident took place before the state legalized same-sex marriage.)” 

36 Companies Including Nike, Starbucks, and Intel Support Gay Marriage in Oregon

April 3rd, 2014 Comments off
Nike's Pride Shoe

Nike’s Pride Shoe

More than 36 companies, including Nike, Starbucks, and Intel, have lent their voices to support marriage equality in Oregon. The 36 major companies filed an amicus brief yesterday saying that banning marriage equality is harmful for the state and unlawful to gay and lesbian couples and families. According to the companies, the ban: “causes very real harm to Oreogn businesses Oregon businesses must attract and retain the best employee talent to compete effectively in a national and global economy.” United for Marriage, a grassroots initiative to legalize gay marriage in the state, told US District Judge Michael McShane that it would not go ahead with its ballot measure if he swiftly decides on a case currently in his court  that can strike down the gay marriage ban.

Full list of companies after the jump…

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Dating Site OkCupid Blocks Mozilla Firefox Over Anti-Gay CEO

April 1st, 2014 Comments off

 

Screen Shot via OkCupid

Screen Shot via OkCupid

Last week, Mozilla, the company behind the popular Web browser Firefox, announced a new CEO, Brandan Eich, who has donated money to fight gay marriage in California. Now, one popular website is taking matters into their own hands to send a message to the company that hate, even if it’s a private citizen, has no place in the tech world. Users using Firefox to access uber-popular dating site OkCupid found a message that encouraged users to use Chrome or Safari instead of supporting Mozilla.

Hello there, Mozilla Firefox user. Pardon this interruption of your OkCupid experience. Mozilla’s new CEO, Brendan Eich, is an opponent of equal rights for gay couples. We would therefore prefer that our users not use Mozilla software to access OkCupid. Politics is normally not the business of a website, and we all know there’s a lot more wrong with the world than misguided CEOs. So you might wonder why we’re asserting ourselves today. This is why: we’ve devoted the last ten years to bringing people—all people—together. If individuals like Mr. Eich had their way, then roughly 8% of the relationships we’ve worked so hard to bring about would be illegal. Equality for gay relationships is personally important to many of us here at OkCupid. But it’s professionally important to the entire company. OkCupid is for creating love. Those who seek to deny love and instead enforce misery, shame, and frustration are our enemies, and we wish them nothing but failure. If you want to keep using Firefox, the link at the bottom will take you through to the site. However, we urge you to consider different software for accessing OkCupid: OkCupid then provides links to other popular browsers. On Saturday, Mozilla’s blog posted a statement “to clarify Mozilla’s official support of equality and inclusion for LGBT people.”

 

Sara Gilbert Marries Girlfriend Linda Perry

March 31st, 2014 Comments off
Image via Facebook

Image via Facebook

Sara Gilbert and her longtime girlfriend Linda Perry have officially tied the knot. The Talk co-host confirmed to Us Weekly that the pair married and today the girls discussed the wedding on the air. “It was at sunset, and overlooking the ocean,” said Aisha Tyler. ”She is off on her honeymoon and returns on Monday,” said co-host Julie Chen. All the wedding details will be revealed when Gilbert returns.

 

David Furnish and Elton John Set Wedding Date in May

March 31st, 2014 Comments off
Image via Mazzzur.

Image via Mazzzur.

“We don’t feel the need to take an extra step legally. But since we’re committed for life, we feel it’s really important to take that step, and take advantage of that amazing change in legislation. We all live by example,” David Furnish said of his upcoming nuptials to Elton John. Since gay and lesbian marriage in England and Wales is now legal, the two have set the date for May. But will it be a big star-filled celebration?  “We do like big parties,” Furnish said. “Over eight years ago, we had 650 people on the 21st of December at our house in Windsor… But with the kids, everything is different. I think what we’ll do is go to a registry office in England in May, and take the boys with us, and a couple of witnesses.”

Gay Marriage Begins in Wales and England Today: Enter the Contest to Win a Dream Trip to the UK

March 29th, 2014 Comments off
Image via VisitBritain

Image via VisitBritain

At midnight gay and lesbian couples throughout England and Wales were able to legally marry for the first time. While same-sex civil unions have been legal in the UK, this July all three parties including Conservatives overwhelmingly supported the bill and Prime Minister David Cameron quickly signed the bill.  “It says we are a country that will continue to honour its proud traditions of respect, tolerance and equal worth,” Cameron wrote. “It also sends a powerful message to young people growing up who are uncertain about their sexuality. It clearly says ‘you are equal’ whether straight or gay.”

Do you want to win a trip to the UK to celebrate your love? Enter for your chance to win tickets to Pride events in either Brighton, Cardiff, Manchester, or Birmingham! You’ll stay at the Grove, Wales, from Further Afield, the Radisson Blu Edwardian Manchester or the Staying Cool Apartments, Birmingham. All with fab Virgin Atlantic premium flights!

Click here to enter the contest. 

 

 

Federal Government Will Recognize Michigan’s Married Gays and Lesbians

March 28th, 2014 Comments off
Screen Shot via YouTube.

Screen Shot via YouTube.

US Attorney General Eric Holder announced today that the Federal Government will recognize the 300 same-sex marriages performed in Michigan before a federal appeals court put them on hold. Holder said in a press conference: 

“I have determined that the same-sex marriages performed last Saturday in Michigan will be recognized by the federal government. These families will be eligible for all relevant federal benefits on the same terms as other same-sex marriages. The Governor of Michigan has made clear that the marriages that took place on Saturday were lawful and valid when entered into, although Michigan will not extend state rights and benefits tied to these marriages pending further legal proceedings.

For purposes of federal law, as I announced in January with respect to similarly situated same-sex couples in Utah, these Michigan couples will not be asked to wait for further resolution in the courts before they may seek federal benefits to which they are entitled. Last June’s decision by the Supreme Court in United States v. Windsor was a victory for equal protection under the law and a historic step toward equality for all American families. The Department of Justice continues to work with its federal partners to implement this decision across the government. And we will remain steadfast in our commitment to realizing our country’s founding ideals of equality, opportunity, and justice for all.”

Human Rights Campaign responded:

“Last week 300 committed and loving same-sex couples were legally wed in Michigan. As such they deserve the recognition and treatment that all other married couples receive. Attorney General Eric Holder has once again demonstrated his steadfast commitment to equality and upholding the core values of the U.S. Constitution by affirming federal recognition of these marriages.”