Monday, July 28, 2014
A federal appeals court on Monday upheld a lower court's ruling striking down Virginia's ban on gay marriage.
The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond heard an appeal in Bostic v. Rainey on May 13, roughly three months after a federal judge in Norfolk ruled that Virginia's 2006 voter-approved constitutional amendment defining marriage as a heterosexual union violates the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
“[W]e conclude that the Virginia Marriage Laws violate the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the extend that they prevent same-sex couples from marrying and prohibit Virginia from recognizing same-sex couples' lawful out-of-state marriages,” the court majority wrote in its 98-page opinion. “Denying same-sex couples this choice prohibits them from participating fully in our society, which is precisely the type of segregation that the Fourteenth Amendment cannot countenance.”
Circuit Judge Paul V. Niemeyer dissented.
“[T]he majority fails to explain how this new notion became incorporated into the traditional definition of marriage except by linguistic manipulation,” he wrote. “And it does not anticipate or address the problems that this approach causes, failing to explain, for example, why this broad right to marry, as the majority defines it, does not also encompass the 'right' of a father to marry his daughter or the 'right' of any person to marry multiple partners.”
Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, applauded the ruling, noting that it was the 25th consecutive win for marriage equality supporters.
“It was in a case out of Virginia that the Supreme Court ended race discrimination in marriage,” Wolfson said in an emailed statement. “And today, in another Virginia marriage case, a federal circuit court ruled against discrimination in marriage, affirming the freedom to marry for loving and committed gay couples. The Fourth Circuit’s ruling echoes what over 25 other federal and state courts have held: same-sex couples deserve the dignity of marriage, and anti-marriage laws are indefensible. Every day of denial is a day of injustice and tangible harms. It’s time for the Supreme Court to bring the country to national resolution and secure the freedom to marry for all.”
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring, a Democrat, announced in January that he would not defend the ban in court and has subsequently filed briefs in support of plaintiff couples.
I'm watching this one rather closely, because it potentially affects West Virginia's (my current home state) ban on same sex marriage.
Not that I'm planning on rushing out an gettin' hitched.
I can barely tolerate living with me, let alone convincing someone else that it's a good idea.
Legislation which seeks to ban therapies that attempt to alter a minor's sexual orientation from gay to straight was introduced in Michigan last week.
According to MLive, the measure is being backed by Rep. Adam Zemke, a Democrat from Ann Arbor.
“The evidence shows you cannot change sexual orientation, so the legislation was kind of a no-brainer,” Zemke said. “We want to make sure children cannot be exposed to situations that are emotionally harmful to them because of their parents' beliefs or desires to try to change their orientation.”
The proposed legislation is modeled after California's first-in-the-nation law. A similar law was approved last year in New Jersey. But efforts in Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York have been blocked or stalled.
Republican Rep. Gail Haines, who chairs the House Health Policy Committee, has already signaled his opposition to the bill, calling it “unnecessary.”
LOL, it's refreshing to see a Republican Teabagger publicly admit he's not concerned about children's mental and emotional health and development.
Sunday, July 27, 2014
As one of the organizers, Yuri Gavrikov, head of the LGBT organization “Equality”, told REGNUM, the activists wanted to hold a march, but they had been denied to do so.
The event was secured by police, which accompanied the activists from the subway, and after the event led them to buses used to take the participants to the nearest subway, but many walked on foot.
During the rally, which was attended by at least 150 people and took place in the hot sun, activists talked about the need to respect civil rights and thanked the police for protection of the event, talking about “how important it is to be free in a not so free country,” activist Valery Sozaev also spoke about HIV and AIDS. There were not only representatives of the LGBT community, in particular the representative of the feminist movement came to the event. One of the members of the LGBT movement Kirill Kalugin brought a torn rainbow flag, which was used in the rally last year, not as peaceful as today.
One of the protesters, Eugene Pirozhkov, was holding a placard “Sodomy is sweeter than honey” and was detained by police after refusing to roll the poster and so he was taken to the police bus. The poster graphics included some Christian symbols. Pirozhkov was accused of violating the “gay propaganda” ban law. Another young man, who was not a representative of the LGBT community, has been removed from the venue by police at the request of the organizers, as he handed out leaflets with nationalistic themes.
Activists also report several provocations. Before the start of the event, an unknown man and woman led some children to the venue and photographed them. The children were then put to stand near the fence around the venue. Later, a member of the Board of “St. Petersburg Observers” Alexey Belozerov, who also tried to photograph those children, was arrested because according to police he photographed children without their parents’ permission.
In 2013, a similar event also took place on the Champ de Mars, but ended up in mass detention of members of the LGBT community and their numerous opponents who put up a fight.
Saturday, July 26, 2014
Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, a Republican, on Wednesday accused the “gay community” of working to allow adults “to freely prey on little children sexually.”
Bachmann warned that gays will “abolish age of consent laws, which means we will do away with statutory rape laws so that adults will be able to freely prey on little children sexually. That's the deviance that we're seeing embraced in our culture today.”
Bachmann, a strong opponent of gay rights, made her comments during an appearance on the conservative radio show Faith & Liberty.
She also attacked marriage equality as a “radical experiment” with “profound consequences.”
“I think that nature tells us, our biology tells us, that marriage is between a man and a woman. When we tamper with something that was generated by the Creator of the Universe, I think there are profound consequences that we haven't yet realized.”
Bachmann added that her message was about spreading “goodness and joy and wholeness and healing, and we do that through a loving God with a message that frees people, it doesn't enslave people.”
With those kind of statistics, maybe they should be banning heterosexual marriages.
Just so ya know Michele, what your spreading isn't goodness and joy, it's lies, deception, obfuscation and intolerance.
But then again, you don't have a clue what the truth is, do you?