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Tag Archives: equality

Parents of Dead Soldier Fight For His Rights At Home July 8th, 2011
Parents of Dead Soldier Fight For His Rights At Home

This article on CNN details the life of Andrew Wilfahrt, a gay soldier who fought and died in Afghanistan and identified as gay. He is most unusual because he came out when he was 16, but was intent on joining the military from an early age. After he died on February 27th of this year, his parents have begun to get involved in the gay rights movements in their home state, Minnesota. In the land of Pawlenty/Bachmann, it is so wonderful to see such support coming from them and their cause. Read the full article here.



Marriage Equality passed in the New York State Senate June 24th, 2011
Marriage Equality passed in the New York State Senate

What does this mean? Governor Cuomo must sign the bill. 30 days thereafter, legal same-sex marriage will be able to be performed in the State of New York. Same-sex couples will enjoy all benefits married couples enjoy provided by the State of New York. They will not enjoy those provided by the Federal Government. This means that same-sex married couples will still have to file as "single" on their federal taxes. What was negotiated? In order to gain the necessary votes, Democrats and Republicans provided exemptions for religious clergymen, affiliated non-for-profits and fraternal organizations that wish not to marry or provide services to same-sex couples. Why is this significant? New York has become the most populous State in the Union to recognize the performance of same-sex marriage. These are the facts.



What’s Holding up Marriage Equality in New York? June 21st, 2011
What’s Holding up Marriage Equality in New York?

The days are numbered in Albany this week. The Legislature breaks for summer recess as of Friday. A vote on Marriage Equality must take place between now and then. So what's holding it up still? Ostensibly, there is one remaining issue up for negotiation- exemptions for religious groups that do not wish to recognize same-sex unions. In the final bill, this may account for less that fifteen words, but they are critical none-the-less. There are rumors going around asserting that churches and clergy members would have to perform Marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples against their will. In fact, that is true... in states like Connecticut that mandate it, if a clergy member wishes to perform a service, the member must use the word "Marriage". In New York, the situation is wildly different. The Marriage Equality bill passed in the Assembly allows clergymen to excuse themselves if they personally oppose same-sex unions. The bill also stipulates that fraternal organizations, such as the Knights of Columbus, can not be compelled to rent their venues or provide services to same-sex unions. This is a particularly large concession considering fraternal organizations are commonly held to the same anti-discrimination standards that non-for-profits are. So what remains? Some ...



Just in Time for Marilyn’s Birthday May 29th, 2011
Just in Time for Marilyn’s Birthday

Gay and lesbian couples will be eligible to apply for civil union licenses in Illinois beginning Wednesday (which would've been Marilyn Monroe's 85th birthday). The Civil Union bill narrowly passed in Illinois so it will more than likely be some time before advocates in the state make a push for marriage equality, but, hey! It's a start. It's not all puppy dogs and rainbows over in Illinois, however. As a result of this new law, Catholic Charities of Rockford (also in Illinois) announced that they're halting its state-funded foster care and adoption services Wednesday — the day civil unions take effect in Illinois. The decision could potentially trigger a "domino effect", as the Chicago Tribune puts it, of Catholic Charities leaving the foster care and adoption business to avoid liability if state law requires them to place children with parents in civil unions — either gay or straight. In Rockford, the decision could displace about 350 foster children served by Catholic Charities and put 58 employees out of work. That doesn't sound very Christ-like to me.



One-day Boycott of Chick-fil-A May 6th, 2011
One-day Boycott of Chick-fil-A

GetEqual has been busy lately, planning multiple rallies and protests for today. If you can't make it to Newark to help protest the deportation hearings of a gay bi-national couple,  help out GetEqual and the LGBTQ community by boycotting Chick-fil-A today. For those of you who don't know, Chick-fil-A has directly been funding and associating with major anti-equality advocacy groups, such as Focus on the Family and National Organization for Marriage. For a full list, check here. Colleges around the country have been responding to this - Indiana University South Bend is actually closer than ever to removing the franchise from their campus and NYU will be investigating the issue over the summer. Reason GetEqual has picked today of all days? Simple. Chick-Fil-A will be holding a seminar in Atlanta at the World Congress Center called “LeaderCast” (link here). From GetEqual's Press Release: The event will be broadcast live to venues across the United Sates, and GetEQUAL is supporting local protests at Chick-Fil-A restaurants across the country to draw attention to the fast food chain’s record of anti-LGBT financial giving. Of course, the law gives Chick-Fil-A the right to give to any group they’d like — but the law does not prevent making anti-LGBT giving a ...



Inverview with Richard Socarides from EqualityMatters.org April 9th, 2011
Inverview with Richard Socarides from EqualityMatters.org

LGBT rights champion and President of EqualityMatters.org Richard Socarides answers some questions about current issues facing our community. Richard served as a Senior White House Advisor to President Bill Clinton and has been instrumental in advancing equality for the past 20 years.