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message 1: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments I thought it might be good to have a thread to keep track of how the world is changing in the arena of LGBT rights, including gay marriage, adoption, school policies, and more.


message 2: by Kaje (last edited Jun 09, 2013 09:23PM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments In recent positive news, Brazil's highest court has ruled that gay marriage is legal - this ruling would apply across the whole country rather than state by state. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10...

And in the UK, the House of Lords just approved moving forward on marriage equality legislation by a hefty margin of positive votes. http://www.advocate.com/politics/marr...


message 3: by Kim (new)

Kim (lokilady) | 364 comments The first time gay couples were eligible to run for the senior class "Cutest Couple" category at their [unspecified] high school, this couple won.

Also, the "Peace Corps [Has Decided] to Allow Same-Sex Couples to Serve Together."


message 4: by Justin (new)

Justin South (justinsouth) | 79 comments Kaje wrote: "I thought it might be good to have a thread to keep track of how the world is changing in the arena of LGBT rights, including gay marriage, adoption, school policies, and more."

How coincidental you started this topic, Kaje. Just today I posted on my blog a newspaper report of an incident that occurred in New Zealand recently.

The point is this incident occurred only a month after the country legislated same sex marriage from mid August. Some people won't learn.

Anyone interested can read it here: http://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_...


message 5: by Gabby (new)

Gabby | 166 comments New Zealand has just legalized same-sex marriage!! (17th April, 2013) I only hope that Australia isn't too far behind.


message 6: by Kaje (last edited Jun 26, 2013 10:26AM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments June 26, 2013 - The Supreme Court of the US just struck down the Defense of Marriage act, ruling that the law violates the rights of gays and lesbians and intrudes into states' rights to define and regulate marriage.
"The avowed purpose and practical effect of the law here in question are to impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma upon all who enter into same-sex marriages made lawful by the authority of States." As such, they considered it unconstitutional. :D

This will potentially allow same-sex couples legally married within their states to have access to federal married-couple benefits, such as joint tax filing, Social Security benefits, and not paying estate taxes on inheritance.

It doesn't extend gay marriage rights in any states that don't have them, but in those that do, gay couples will have the full rights of any married couple with regard to federal laws and programs. (And just in time for MN Pride weekend, where we were already going to celebrate the recent passage of legal gay marriage in the state. I imagine it will be one heck of a party.)


message 7: by Kaje (last edited Jul 25, 2013 01:32PM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Great Britain has just legalized gay marriage: http://world.time.com/2013/07/17/brit...

We are still fighting the battle for acceptance on so many fronts. But every bit helps, and the pictures of joy and acceptance in Great Britain are one more step.


message 8: by Trisha (new)

Trisha Harrington (trishaharrington) | 101 comments Ireland is having a referendum on Gay Marriage next year. Over 70% of us are in support of it (according to polls). So, I have high hopes we will get it passed. :)


message 9: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) Wow Trisha. I'd not have guessed. Please forgive my ignorance, but are you referring to the Catholic or Protestant (so-called?) part of Ireland?


message 10: by Trisha (new)

Trisha Harrington (trishaharrington) | 101 comments Cheryl in CC NV wrote: "Wow Trisha. I'd not have guessed. Please forgive my ignorance, but are you referring to the Catholic or Protestant (so-called?) part of Ireland?"

It's fine! The Catholic part... Trust me, though, I was as shocked as you. With such a large number, I find it hard to see how it could get rejected.


message 11: by Justin (new)

Justin South (justinsouth) | 79 comments Today's news carries a report that New South Wales could become the first Australian state to legalise same-sex marriage. This announcement comes after a seven month enquiry has paved the way for fresh legislation that is supported by MPs across the political spectrum.

With the State's Premier promising a conscience vote on the issue, a cross-party working group of MPs has made key changes to the Same Sex Marriage 2013 Bill, which will be introduced in the next session of Parliament. Supporters hope the private member's bill will be voted on by the end of the year.

The bill will also recognise same-sex marriages from other Australian states, but not those conducted overseas, because of constitutional concerns.

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/nsw-set-to-...


message 12: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Very cool - thanks for the link.


message 13: by Gabby (new)

Gabby | 166 comments Highlight to my day. Australia's getting closer... :)


message 14: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments With Russia's crackdown on homosexual "propaganda" (meaning saying anything positive about being gay, or showing any sign of being gay) there is a question about the safety of athletes and spectators during the 2014 Olympics. http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2013/08/ru... It will be interesting to see how that plays out, but it needs to be addressed and kept front and center, especially given the presence of out gay figure skaters in this, a winter Olympics...


message 15: by Sandra (new)

Sandra  (myfictionnook) | 48 comments I do hope the IOC steps in before it's too late, but I also very much doubt it. Their history speaks for itself.


message 16: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments Kaje wrote: "With Russia's crackdown on homosexual "propaganda" (meaning saying anything positive about being gay, or showing any sign of being gay) there is a question about the safety of athletes and spectato..."

What Putin is doing to Russia makes my blood boil. I watch Russian news and it's a joke. Putin this and Putin that.


message 17: by Karl (new)

Karl | 7 comments The Russian sports minister has said that athletes can be gay as long as they do not engage in propaganda in the presence of minors, etc. And then turns around and says that Russia's anti-gay laws will be enforced during the Olympics. It's a travesty- the messages are so mixed and the IOC and the international community have to step up and clarify this for the safety of our athletes.


message 18: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments And some of those athletes will be minors. I'm trying to be optimistic and see this as a lever to force the international community to address pressure against the homophobic situation in Russia (which otherwise they totally ignore as "not my problem".) Maybe this will make it their problem. We'll see...


message 19: by Sandra (new)

Sandra  (myfictionnook) | 48 comments Based on the law as it was reported in the news, they can arrest anyone and hold them for a time, if they suspect that person of being pro-gay-rights. That to me means that if an athlete is gay, has ever given an indication of being gay, or has given an interview in support of gay rights, that athlete can be arrested and held while in that country, thus preventing him/her from participating. So can their coach and any other person visiting the Games.

I'm pro-gay-rights. I would not ever set foot in that country for any reason at all ever. My social media comments alone would probably be enough for them to arrest me.

The IOC and all countries participating in the Winter Olympics need to speak up and, if necessary, boycott the Games. Let Russia and the other nations united in their bigotry and incomprehensible hatred of every day people compete against themselves.

There is NOTHING wrong with being LGBTQ. There is something fundamentally wrong with those who hate on their fellow humans.


message 20: by Karl (new)

Karl | 7 comments So a couple of out gay Olympians like speed skater Blake Skjellerup have come out against a boycott at Sochi saying that a boycott would hurt the athletes more. But how many more athletes are we not hearing from who are not out?

He said he doesn't plan on changing who he is based on rules in a particular country. I can totally see how a boycott would be devastating to an athlete who has trained their entire lives for this chance that comes around only every 4 years (and 4 years age difference can be an eternity in some sports). And I applaud his sentiment about standing up to the bigotry. But at the same time, parents and family/friends are sending their young athletes into a situation where they could be detained when this should be a time for celebration. I don't know how I would feel if it were me. It is the job of the IOC to ensure the safety of all the athletes.


message 21: by Sandra (new)

Sandra  (myfictionnook) | 48 comments Yes, of course a boycott would severely hurt the athletes who've trained for a long time to participate. I was around in 1980 when the US and other countries decided to boycott the Games in Moscow. It's always a shame when politics get in the way of sports.

But, and this is a huge but, IMHO, any athlete going to Scochi risks being arrested, whether they're gay or not. Just the suspicion seems to be enough to warrant an arrest, proof or no.

And that's what scares me.


message 22: by Kim (last edited Aug 11, 2013 11:18AM) (new)

Kim (lokilady) | 364 comments AllOut has a petition addressing the Olympics issue, if you're interested in signing.

I think it's also worth spreading the word about Stephen Fry's marvelous letter on the issue.


message 23: by K (new)

K (k-polipetl) | 4090 comments There is a good breakdown of the situation in issues facing LGBT people in Russia as well as some suggestions as to what businesses and individuals can do to protest on the Stonewall UK site HERE


message 24: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments Winter Olympic boycott not the answer to Russian gay rights abuse, says PM
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/...


message 25: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Thanks for the link.


message 26: by Natasha (new)

Natasha (natashasnow) | 2 comments Kim wrote: "AllOut has a petition addressing the Olympics issue, if you're interested in signing.

I think it's also worth spreading the word about Stephen Fry's marvelous letter on the issue."


Thank you for this link


message 27: by Sammy Goode (new)

Sammy Goode | 5380 comments I signed this petition. Frankly this both horrifies and saddens me--the abuse and all out man/woman hunt going on and the remarkable hatred and contempt for human life is staggering. Putin is a despot and a bully-always has been. While Russia is still a force to contend with politically, they have diminished in their ability to be a viable threat as their own country struggles with more poverty and discord than ever. A strong showing from several key countries would derail Scochi but that would take international cooperation that I am really unsure we could muster as a people in general. But still, we can add our voices to the ever growing throng who believe that what is happening is not only wrong but criminal.

Go sign the petition, make your local officials know your outrage--I wrote my senators. Use the power of your words and your voice to tell Russia you see them for what they are...evil bullies who have no regard for human rights or lives.


message 28: by Michael (new)

Michael Bowler (michaeljbowler) | 82 comments Sammy Goode wrote: "I signed this petition. Frankly this both horrifies and saddens me--the abuse and all out man/woman hunt going on and the remarkable hatred and contempt for human life is staggering. Putin is a d..."

Where's the link to the petition, Sammy? I can't find it.


message 29: by Kaje (last edited Aug 14, 2013 10:24AM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments It's in message 22 - they presented it once, but are looking for more signatures.

https://www.allout.org/en/actions/rus...


message 30: by Michael (new)

Michael Bowler (michaeljbowler) | 82 comments Kaje wrote: "It's in message 22 - they presented it once, but are looking for more signatures.

https://www.allout.org/en/actions/rus..."


I got it, thanks, Kaje!


message 31: by Sammy Goode (new)

Sammy Goode | 5380 comments Kaje wrote: "It's in message 22 - they presented it once, but are looking for more signatures.

https://www.allout.org/en/actions/rus..."


thanks Kaje--just saw this!!!


message 32: by John (new)

John (infopump) | 20 comments "God gave you a penis for a reason" – publisher cancels gay author's novel by Rob Beschizza via Boing Boing

Sweetwater Books, a division of Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, has cancelled the publication of Woven, a highly anticipated young adult fantasy novel, because the biographical blurb of one of Woven’s two authors referenced the author’s “partner.”

http://boingboing.net/2013/08/21/god-...

Woven


message 33: by Michael (new)

Michael Bowler (michaeljbowler) | 82 comments John wrote: ""God gave you a penis for a reason" – publisher cancels gay author's novel by Rob Beschizza via Boing Boing

Sweetwater Books, a division of Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, has cancelled the public..."

This is beyond disturbing . . .


message 34: by Sandra (new)

Sandra  (myfictionnook) | 48 comments John wrote: ""God gave you a penis for a reason" – publisher cancels gay author's novel by Rob Beschizza via Boing Boing

Sweetwater Books, a division of Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, has cancelled the public..."



That's utterly disgusting. I hope the book gets published by another publisher, pronto.


message 35: by Gabby (new)

Gabby | 166 comments That is absolutely disgusting! That book had better get picked up by another publisher!!


message 36: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments 'As a gay man, I must decline' - Prison Break actor Wentworth Miller refuses invitation to Russia over anti-gay laws

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-ent...


message 37: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Michael wrote: "John wrote: ""God gave you a penis for a reason" – publisher cancels gay author's novel by Rob Beschizza via Boing Boing

Sweetwater Books, a division of Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, has cancell..."


I definitely will not buy books from Sweetwater Press at this point - http://wovenbook.com/


message 38: by Kaje (last edited Aug 22, 2013 11:48AM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Another case of boycott or advocate in Russia - the Miss Universe Pageant is being petitioned to move out of Russia this year - Donald Trump has said he won't move the show, hoping to be an advocate for change instead, according to releases (FWIW). His co-host, however, Andy Cohen, will not go this year, given his concerns about traveling to Russia as a gay man. http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/201...

What is really sad to me are the number of comments from people applauding Russia's stand on some of the online sites. http://za.omg.yahoo.com/news/miss-uni...


message 39: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments Kaje wrote: "What is really sad to me are the number of comments from people applauding Russia's stand on some of the online sites. http://za.omg.yahoo.com/news/miss-uni... "

It is sad and disturbing but not surprising. Hopefully after like 50 years homophobic behaviour wouldn't be so acceptable as it's today.


message 40: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments More of Russian homophobia :(
http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2013/09/11/...


message 41: by Kaje (last edited Sep 13, 2013 08:02PM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments You wonder how people can be like that. Just crazy. I suppose it distracts attention away from things like misuse of money and other issues the politicians don't want to have discussed.


message 42: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Fieland | 61 comments Just in case someone here missed this, my wife and I learned last week that, not only can we file as married when we file 2013 taxes, but Feds have verified that gay married couples can take advantage of the "refile the previous three years" provision to refile 2010, 2011, and 2012 as married as well.

Woo hoo!!

We learned this from our attorney when we went to sign our wills. Ruling was issued by Feds a week or two ago.


message 43: by Anna (new)

Anna Kļaviņa (annamatsuyama) | 89 comments :D


message 44: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Margaret wrote: "Just in case someone here missed this, my wife and I learned last week that, not only can we file as married when we file 2013 taxes, but Feds have verified that gay married couples can take advan..."

Excellent! About time you stopped paying a penalty like that. :)


message 45: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Fieland | 61 comments Kaje wrote: "Margaret wrote: "Just in case someone here missed this, my wife and I learned last week that, not only can we file as married when we file 2013 taxes, but Feds have verified that gay married coupl..."

Our accountant is still working on the returns. My wife is self-employed, and we're *really* looking forward to filing the joint return.


message 46: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments Margaret wrote: "Kaje wrote: "Margaret wrote: "Just in case someone here missed this, my wife and I learned last week that, not only can we file as married when we file 2013 taxes, but Feds have verified that gay ..."

Yeah :) It's only fair and long overdue.


message 47: by Kaje (last edited Nov 17, 2013 09:24AM) (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments I also posted in the equal marriage thread:

Yesterday, Illinois became the 15th area (14 states plus DC) state to pass the freedom to marry through the legislature, both Senate and now the House. The bill will soon head to the desk of Governor Pat Quinn who has promised to sign it into law.


message 48: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Fieland | 61 comments Kaje wrote: "I also posted in the equal marriage thread:

Yesterday, Illinois became the 15th state to pass the freedom to marry through the legislature, both Senate and now the House. The bill will soon head t..."


Great news!


message 49: by Sandy (new)

Sandy | 14 comments yay Illinois!!!


message 50: by Kaje (new)

Kaje Harper | 16359 comments The Senate Passes ENDA, Clarifying America's Gay-Friendliest States

Although there may not be a House vote on the Employee Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), it's still cool to see it pass the senate with a 2-1 margin.


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