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Content about California

October 12, 2014

'They deserve the right to equality, and the same respect and decency that other people have that are living right next door'

October 11, 2014

Carl DeMaio, who could become the first openly gay Republican ever elected to the United States Congress, denies groping, harassing and masturbating in front of his former aide

Carl DeMaio, a candidate from San Diego, California, has been accused of sexually harassing, sexually accosting, and then attempting to bribe into silence, his former campaign policy director, Todd Bosnich.

DeMaio is a candidate for California's 52nd congressional district in the November 4, 2014 election, and is challenging one-term incumbent Scott Peters. 

At a press conference on Wednesday, DeMaio, 40, called the allegations 'absolutely untrue' and a 'complete lie.'

October 9, 2014

Police are not treating the murder as a hate crime

A 38-year-old Californian man has been arrested in the murder of a transgender and immigrant activist.

Randy Lee Parkerson was detained on Tuesday while driving in the city of Anaheim on suspicion of murder in the death of 28-year-old Zoraida Reyes.

He was arrested near to the parking lot of a Dairy Queen where her body was found in June.

Lieutenant Bob Dunn, a spokesman for the Anaheim Police Department, told the LA Times, ‘There is nothing to suggest that Zoraida was specifically targeted.

‘The motive is still unclear.’

October 9, 2014

The 'accidental activist' tells GSN how changing her gender marker changed her life

It took Geena Rocero nearly a decade to come out publicly as transgender from the time she moved to New York to become a model. But when she did, she came out to an audience of 2 million and counting in a TED talk on March 31, the International Transgender Day of Visibility.

Rocero, 30, grew up in Manila and entered and won her first beauty pageant at the age of 15. She originally intended to follow her transgender friends to Japan, but she changed her plans when she found out she could change her gender marker in California - and in doing so change her life.

October 4, 2014

Oral arguments for the case will be heard at the end of October

The highest court in the United Methodist Church will hear an appeal of a minister who lost his position after officiating his son's same-sex wedding.

Reverend Frank Schaefer was pastor at Zion United Methodist Church of Iona, in Pennsylvania's South Lebanon Township, for 11 years when he was defrocked.

October 3, 2014

Residents and merchants of Coronado have banded together for event with mayor officiating

Arizona couple Oscar De Las Salas and Gary Jackson are returning to the resort town of Coronado in California to get married - again.

But this time, they don't that expect any anonymous anti-gay hecklers will try and disrupt things.

That's because residents, merchants and leaders of the San Diego-area tourist destination have banded together for the 11 October event and they are footing the bill $15,000 - 20,000 bill.

October 1, 2014

Respect After Death Act ensures that authentic gender identity is reflected on death certificates

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed a bill into law that will make sure death certificates for transgender people accurately reflect their authentic, lived identity.

The Respect After Death Act requires that the authority responsible for completing the transgender person's death certificate adhere to documentation of their gender identity such as an updated birth certificate or driver's license.

September 30, 2014

'Meg and I were jumped coming home from a birthday party,' one of the victims said. 'I thought my girl was dead.'

A gay couple were attacked in Long Beach, California as they were riding their bicycles.

Jamie Jarvis and Meg Taylor said they got jumped after coming home after a birthday party on Saturday evening (27 September).

Posting a graphic photo of the couple's injuries on Facebook, Jarvis claimed she was attacked by three African-American females that were inside two separate vehicles, a silver Mercedes SUV and a silver four-door Ford Focus.

She says, after the attack, that she was afraid 'my girl was dead'.

September 29, 2014

Defendents can no longer claim their violent act was triggered by victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity

California has become the first state in the US to ban the so-called 'panic defense' that has been used successfully by some defendants in court.

Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill which eliminates the excuse that a person was 'panicked' into committing a killing or assaulting a gay or trans person during a sudden quarrel or in the heat of passion.

Some defendants have succeeded in having homicide or manslaughter charges reduced by saying their violent act was triggered by victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

September 23, 2014

What was meant to be one of the best days of their lives turned sour after their outdoors ceremony was beset by hecklers

A gay couple, as happy as could be, were left devastated after they were told as they were exchanging vows to 'go home faggots'.

Oscar De Las Salas and Gary Jackson, an Arizona couple, flew in approximately 30 guests for their wedding in Coronado's Centennial Park in California.

But as they walked in, music playing, and took their positions in the grassy spot, they began hearing shouting.

Phone footage captures the couple saying their vows, with someone in the background shouting 'homos', 'go home homos', and 'go home faggots'.

September 21, 2014

Lifting the ban on blood donations from gay men could increase total annual blood supply in the US by 2%-4%, says UCLA study

Allowing blood donations from gay men could result in more than 600,000 extra pints of blood every year and could save the lives of as many as 1.8 million individuals, says a study by the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law at the University of California, Los Angeles.

September 17, 2014

We headed out of San Francisco to Sonoma County to discover three of the most LGBTI-friendly wineries with Out in the Vineyard

It’s harvest time among the vines of Sonoma County, just outside San Francisco.

And ripening alongside the grapes is a new concept that embraces the LGBTI loves of fine living, travel and, to be honest, drinking – Out in the Vineyard.

Gary Saperstein and Mark Vogler are drawing tourists and locals out of gay mecca and over the Golden Gate Bridge to spend some time in the birthplace of the Californian wine industry.

September 17, 2014

Associate justice says there will only be urgency for high court if a state ban is upheld

Ruth Bader Ginsburg says the US Supreme Court won't be in a big rush to hear a gay marriage case unless the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upholds state marriage bans.

If that were to happen, 'there will be some urgency,' Ginsberg said during a talk at the University of Minnesota Law School on Tuesday (16 September).

The Sixth Circuit covers Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee and has marriage equality cases pending.

September 14, 2014

The Broadway star married his fiancé at an outdoor ceremony in Los Angeles, which he called a ‘new beginning’ for the pair 

US Broadway star Cheyenne Jackson got married to his fiancé at a romantic ceremony yesterday in Los Angeles (13 September).

An an outdoor ceremony, Jackson tied the knot with entrepreneur Jason Landau.

The pair hit headlines when they announced their engagement six months after Jackson, 39, ended his 13-year relationship with his former husband.

People magazine reports the ceremony was attended by a group of celebrity friends such as Jane Lynch, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Leah Remini and Alicia Silverstone.

September 13, 2014

Federal judge orders Arizona to recognize gay couple's marriage despite state's same-sex marriage ban

It is victory for an 69-year-old gay man who had lost his spouse to cancer last month and was denied death benefits because Arizona does not recognize same-sex marriage.

Fred McQuire and George Martinez were partners of 45 years who got married in California this summer. However when Martinez, 62 and a Vietnam war veteran, died in late August, McQuire was unable to receive social security and veteran benefits because Arizona bans gay marriage.

September 13, 2014

'With their political stance on gay rights and because the students of Ventura High School and their parents would be at the event, I didn’t want them on campus'

A California high school principal prohibited a booster club from selling Chik-fil-A sandwiches  because of the company's stance on gay marriage.

According to CBS 2 Los Angeles Val Wyatt, principal of Ventura High School, argued the food could not be sold at a back to school program because some parents and students might be offended.

September 10, 2014

A Californian vlogger welled up after reading messages that had been sent to him from LGBTI people when he asked if being gay was a choice

Like so many others, Chris Thompson of California was deeply affected and moved when Georgian teen Daniel Pierce posted a video on YouTube of his parents reacting with fury and denial when he revealed to them that he was gay.

September 9, 2014

Three judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals left gay marriage supporters optimistic after challenging arguments used to uphold same-sex marriage bans in three states

The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco heard arguments this week for and against gay marriage in three states.

Justices Stephen Reinhardt, Ronald Gould and Marsha Berzon listened as supporters and opponents of gay marriage in Idaho, Hawaii and Nevada made their cases.

Even though same-sex marriage in Hawaii has been legal since 2 December 2013, gay marriage supporters are seeking to ensure the state's Supreme Court doesn't overturn the law in the future.

September 6, 2014

A student at Azusa Pacific University had a homophobic note pinned to his door on the first week of semester, telling him gay students are not welcome

A gay student at Azusa Pacific University (APU) in California, US returned to his room in the first week of semester to find a note pinned to his door.

However, this was not a welcome note, in fact quite the opposite. Scrawled in green pen were the words: ‘Faggots don’t belong at APU. GET OUT.’

The individual who received the note has not been revealed, but the image of the note which was pinned to his door has gone viral on Twitter.

Huffington Post blogger Heath Adam Ackley posted the image on his Twitter feed.

September 6, 2014

Accused of knowingly exposing an ex-boyfriend and potentially dozens of other men to HIV, a 29-year-old San Diego gay man has been ordered by a judge to stop using Internet dating sites

Thomas Miguel Guerra, aka Ashton Chavez, who currently faces one misdemeanor count of spreading HIV, has been ordered by a judge to stop using all Internet dating sites specifically Grindr.

The LA Times reports that officials from the city attorney's office said the investigation is continuing and more victims may be added.

August 30, 2014

State Assembly passes bill prohibiting defendants from using panic defense to escape charges of murdering someone gay or transgender

Is it the end of the gay panic and trans panic defenses in California?

The California State Assembly overwhelmingly passed a bill this week that would prohibit murder defendants from using the so-called panic defense.

The bill had already been psssed by the State Senate and will now go to Governor Jerry Brown who must sigb it for it to become law.

Under this defense strategy, some defendants have been able to escape murder charges by claiming they panicked because they discovered the victim was gay or transgender.

August 28, 2014

Frank Bernard quit job as a manager with third largest pizza chain in US when it refused to cover his husband of six years

California resident Frank Bernard is suing the Little Caesars pizza chain because it refused to provide health insurance benefits for the former manager's husband.

The chain, the third-largest in the US, offers benefits to the spouses of its heterosexual employees. Bernard, 47, has been legally wed to his husband for six years.

August 28, 2014

A gay couple became dads after using a surrogate mom in California but faced problems when registering the child on the Swiss national register of births

A court in Switzerland has made the historic decision to recognise two men as the legal parents of a child born to a surrogate mom in the United States – despite surrogacy being illegal in the country.

The two men, who live together in a registered partnership, are originally from the St Gallen region of northeast Switzerland. They became fathers through the use of a surrogate mom in California, with the child being conceived through artificial insemination, a donor egg and the sperm of one of the men.

August 27, 2014

High court expected to accept a marriage equality case next year but will have several to choose from

Celebrated lawyers Ted Olson and David Boies want to return to the US Supreme Court and argue for marriage equality.

The team, who successfully argued for the overturning of California's ban on gay marriage (Proposition 8), asked the high court on Wednesday (27 August) to review the Virginia marriage case they are currently fighting for.

The court is widely expected to take on a same-sex marriage case in 2015 but the Virginia case is one of several it will have to choose from.