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July 26, 2014

Like the avalanche of decisions we’re seeing from every corner of this country, the court recognized that loving, committed same-sex couples should have equal access to the law’s protection'

Alaska's Supreme Court ruled yesterday, 25 July, that same-sex partners should have access to survivor benefits.

The ruling stems from the 2011 workplace murder of Kerry Fadely. She was employed by Anchorage’s Millennium Hotel when shot and killed by a disgruntled former employee.

July 26, 2014

Ruling is second in eight days declaring Florida ban unconstitutional

Florida's ban on same-sex marriage has suffered its second defeat in less than two weeks.

Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel has ordered that six same-sex couples who sued County Clerk Harvey Ruvin for marriage licenses in January should be allowed to get married.

But Zabel, who issued her ruling late Friday (25 July) afternoon, stayed her decision pending appeal so there will be no immediate marriages in the county.

Zabel cited a 1967 Supreme Court ruling overturning a state ban on interracial marriage in her ruling.

July 24, 2014

She initially wondered: 'I don't see why I have to be identified with those queens'

Edie Windsor was far from the activist she would become at the time of the 1969 Stonewall Riots which marked the beginning of the modern-day gay rights movement.

'When Stonewall happened, I was really this ignorant middle class lady who said "I don't see why I have to be identified with those queens,"' Windsor said in an interview posted Thursday (24 July) by Marriage Equality USA.

But the woman whose lawsuit brought down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) soon realized how heroic the drag queens who took a stand against police raids were.

July 24, 2014

US District Judge Raymond Moore temporarily stays his ruling pending filing of expected appeals

A federal judge has struck down Colorado's ban on same-sex marriage after declaring it to be unconstitutional.

US District Judge Raymond Moore issued the ruling Wednesday (23 July) in a lawsuit filed this month by six gay couples who sued to have the state's ban no longer enforced.

It's the latest development in a state that has marriage equality battles going on on several legal fronts.

Moore stayed his ruling until 25 August - the deadline he gave Colorado Attorney General John Suthers to appeal his ruling to the 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals.

July 20, 2014

LGBTs in Turkey hail the Supreme Court's confirmation that a news article calling gays 'perverts' constitutes hate speech

For the first time, hate speech on the basis of sexual orientation has been officially recognized by a court in Turkey.

July 19, 2014

As protests by the public and boycotts by writers escalate, minister who earlier defended the decision now orders two children's books to be moved to adult section of library

After a vigorous 2-week public debate following the Singapore National Library Board's (NLB) decision to withdraw and destroy three children's books which depict same-sex parents and non-nuclear families, two of the titles will be placed in the adult section instead.

July 18, 2014

Same-sex marriages were conducted in Utah from 2013 December to 2014 January, a 17 day window

The US Supreme Court is allowing Utah not to recognize approximately 1,300 same-sex marriages as the state appeals the legality of those unions.

This past December, District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby ruled Utah's gay marriage ban violated the Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process.

July 17, 2014

 I wouldn't want anyone to rush into things because they see two characters like them get married.

As Glee prepares to begin shooting its sixth and final season, gay high school sweethearts Kurt and Blaine are engaged and pursuing showbiz careers in New York City.

Blaine (Darren Criss) had proposed to Kurt (Chris Colfer) last fall in an elaborate production set to The Beatles All You Need is Love (see video below).

Colfer, who has won a Golden Globe Award and been nominated for an Emmy for his portrayal of Kurt, said this week he hopes the couple takes things slow.

July 17, 2014

Case marks 25th consecutive legal victory for marriage equality since US Supreme Court gutted DOMA last year

Circuit Judge Luis Garcia struck down Florida's gay marriage ban on Thursday (17 July) declaring it unconstitutional.

The judge said the soonest same-sex marriages could take place in Monroe County (located in the Florida Keys) would be Tuesday (22 July). This is the only county in the state over which Garcia has jurisdiction.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi immediately filed an appeal and stated: 'Finality on this constitutional issue must come from the U.S. Supreme Court.'

July 17, 2014

Three gay friends spending a long weekend in Naples found, among many things, humid streets, attractive architecture and oddly erotic statues

An Italian, a German and a London gay man found themselves in the streets of Naples for the annual Gay Pride celebration.

The biggest city in southern Italy gets quite hot in the summer, but our travelers were keen to scope out the tastes and sights of Napoli.

Before and after the parade, the three men (including our GSN team member Marcus James) took to the streets of Naples in search of some legendary pasta (or pizza) and to check out the tourism spots.

So what was Naples like for our three amigos?

July 15, 2014

At least three men are still serving up to 14 years in prison for homosexuality

Malawi has officially suspended arresting people for gay sex, the justice minister has said.

Janet Chijaya-Banda has said the law, which punishes homosexuality with up to 14 years in prison, is effectively no longer used.

She was in front of the UN Human Rights Committee to answer question about the status of the homophobic law last week.

In her response, Banda said police have been told to not arrest anyone for being gay while the country’s Law Commission prepares to review its constitutionality.

July 14, 2014

'I’m not going to, because these are opinions that I feel strongly about'

Gay marriage is legal in his state and in 18 others in the US but New Jersey Governor Chris Christie says now is not the time for Republicans to throw in the towel on the issue.

Opposition to same-sex marriage remains a part of the Republican Party platform which has hurt the party when it comes to attracting younger voters who are not opposed to marriage equality.

July 14, 2014

76-year-old former social studies teacher Jim Gaylord, fired as a teacher for being gay in 1972, finally got an apology from Washington’s Tacoma School Board on Sunday

76-year-old Jim Gaylord has received an apology for the termination that ended his teaching career 42 years ago.

Gaylord was fired from Wilson High School in Tacoma, Washington, in 1972 after the local school board learned that he was gay after 12 years of teaching social studies at the school.

The school found out after a gay student at the school who knew an adult friend of Gaylord’s had sought out his counsel about his sexual orientation.

Gaylord did not confirm his sexual orientation to the student but gave him advice.

July 13, 2014

'I think a lot of these measures that ultimately will come before the court will not survive a heightened scrutiny examination'

If a US state's gay marriage ban is argued in front of the Supreme Court, Attorney General Eric Holder promises the Department of Justice will file a friend of the court brief asking for the prohibition to be removed.

Holder was a guest today, 13 July,  on the ABC News show This Week.

July 12, 2014

The  three-judge panel from the 10th Circuit of Appeals gave the state until 21 July to take its case to the US Supreme Court

Late yesterday, 11 July, a three-judge panel ordered Utah to recognize the marriages of approximately 1,300 LGBTI couples.

This past December District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby ruled the state's gay marriage law violated the US Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process.

After the ruling, for 17 days, same-sex couples married in Utah. The ceremonies were halted when the state appealed to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.

July 10, 2014

US Supreme Court Samuel A. Alito, Jr. offers no comment in his denial of Clerk Theresa Santai-Gaffney's appeal

A Pennsylvania county clerk will not get a chance to defend the state's same-sex ban to the Supreme Court.

According to SCOTUSblog, on 9 July Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. denied, without comment, Theresa Santai-Gaffney's appeal of a lower court's ruling.

The judge's rejection seems to be the clerk's final legal option.

July 9, 2014

Governor Jerry Brown has signed a bill into law creating a gender neutral definition of marriage in California law and recognizing out-of-state same-sex marriages one year after the defeat of Prop 8 in the US Supreme Court

Democratic Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill on Monday that marks the final step on the road to marriage equality for the state of California.

SB1306 deletes language defining marriage as being only between a ‘man and a woman’ in state laws and also recognizes same-sex marriages performed in other states in the same way that California recognizes opposite-sex marriages performed elsewhere.

July 9, 2014

Cites stay issued on federal judge's ruling that struck down state's gay marriage ban

Indiana Governor Mike Pence has ordered state agencies not to recognize any of the hundreds of same-sex marriages that took place last month in the Hoosier state.

The agencies have been directed 'to execute their functions' as though a federal judge had not struck down the state's gay marriage ban on 25 June - to proceed as if it 'had not been issued.'

The state appealed the ruling and a stay was issued by an appellate court but by that time hundreds of same-sex marriages had already taken place.

July 9, 2014

ACLU, Lambda Legal and Transgender Law Center among the groups to say 'inclusion of this provision is no longer tenable'

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act has lost the support of several leading LGBTI legal groups on Tuesday (8 July) because religious groups would be exempt from the long-stalled legislation.

The American Civil Liberties Union; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; Lambda Legal; National Center for Lesbian Rights; and Transgender Law Center issued a joint statement saying the current version of ENDA allows religious organizations to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

July 9, 2014

State is bypassing entire 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals for 'clarity and resolution'

Utah wants the US Supreme Court to decide whether or not same-sex couples can get married in the state.

The state attorney general's office announced today in the coming weeks, it will be filing an appeal with the nation's highest court to challenge a federal judge's finding that the state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional.

By choosing to appeal straight to the Supreme Court, Utah is bypassing having the ruling be reviewed by the entire 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver. A three-judge panel from that court upheld a federal judge's initial ruling.

July 6, 2014

'If the 10th Circuit Court’s decision becomes the governing law, it will mean that Colorado’s marriage laws cannot stand'

The governor and attorney general of Colorado are looking for a definitive legal answer to the state's gay marriage question.

July 5, 2014

'Our plan is to file something with the US Supreme Court because we believe Theresa is a proper party and we believe that intervention is appropriate'

A Pennsylvania county clerk faces a difficult challenge in her attempt to uphold the state's defunct law against same-sex marriage.

On 3 July the US 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed Theresa Santai-Gaffney's appeal of a lower court's rejection of her wish to defend the state's gay marriage ban.

In late May, US District Judge John E. Jones III struck down the state's prohibition against marriage equality.

July 4, 2014

Reverend Irene Monroe explains why two recent Supreme Court decisions could be game changers for straight and LGBTI women in the worst way

This month in the US we celebrate the Fourth of July with rounds of festivities marking America's 238 years of independence.

People will be singing the Star Spangled Banner, or reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, or reenacting the Continental Congress of 1776.

Many will simply be singing reproductions of the ‘rockets red glare and bombs bursting in air’.

All of this and more will be done on a grander and highly commercialized scale. All this happens at home as our American troops continue to soldier on.

July 1, 2014

Judge John G. Heyburn II had already previously ruled that Kentucky must recognize same-sex marriages performed in states where they are legal

Kentucky's ban on same-sex marriage was struck down today by a federal judge who has ruled that it is unconstitutional.

The ruling, however, was put on hold pending an expected appeal meaning there will be no marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples for now.

The ruling by US District Judge John G. Heyburn II marks the 23rd consecutive ruling in favor of marriage equality since the US Supreme Court gutted the Defense of Marriage Act last June.

The DOMA ruling means the federal government must recognize legal marriages between those of the same sex.