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November 21, 2014

Partying with Mickey and Minnie, Elsa and Anna; we'd call it camp as Christmas but that would be too obvious

Once upon a time, in a faraway land, there was a little boy who loved Ariel from Disney's The Little Mermaid a little too much…but he wasn't allowed a doll of her for Christmas.

November 21, 2014

Be gay, but no PDA

Does two men or two women kissing in public make you uncomfortable? If it does, you're not alone.

While gay rights might be sweeping across the western world, public displays of affection between two people of the same gender still gives people the ick.

A report published by the American Sociological Review suggests while Americans are happy for gay people to have rights, they are less happy to have that gayness shoved down their throats - figuratively speaking.

October 8, 2014

A court in Charleston County has issued a same-sex couple with a marriage license this morning – despite a state constitutional ban still being in place

The decision by Charleston County Probate Judge Irvin Condon to issue the license follows Monday’s ruling by the US Supreme Court, in which it refused to take up appeals from five states that wish to uphold their bans on same-sex marriage.

These were Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin.

The decision effectively legalized same-sex marriage in those states.

October 7, 2014
Following the Supreme Court's historic decision, LGBTI people are ever more hopeful that full equality across the country is coming

The Supreme Court has made history in the United States, with three in five Americans soon able to say they live in states that believe in equal marriage for all.

On Monday (6 October), the high court declined to hear appeals from give five states that were challenging lower court rulings legalizing same-sex marriage.

By doing so, same-sex marriage is now legal in Indiana, Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia and Wisconsin.

October 7, 2014

Decision comes a day after marriage equality comes to six additional US states

Same-sex weddings in Las Vegas?

It appears to be just a matter of time now that the Ninth District Court of Appeals has struck down gay marriage bans in the states of Nevada and Idaho.

The ruling comes a day after the US Supreme Court opted not to intervene in gay marriage appeals in Utah, Virginia, Oklahoma, Indiana and Wisconsin making same-sex marriage legal in those states. Colorado also began issuing licenses to same-sex marriages this week.

October 6, 2014

NOM President Brian Brown: 'We are not defeated or dispirited'

Monday was not a good day for the National Organization for Marriage, one of the most vocal opponents of gay marriage in the US.

The US Supreme Court's decision to pass on reviewing any of the seven same-sex marriage cases submitted to them has resulted in same-sex marriage immediately becoming legal in Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin and Indiana on the same day.

In addition, Colorado also announced it would begin issuing marriage licenses state-wide to same-sex couples with five more states likely to soon follow suit.

October 6, 2014

Thousands of same-sex couples can now marry in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin

Thousands of gay couples in the United States are now able to marry thanks to a historic Supreme Court decision today (6 October).

The high court turned down same-sex marriage appeals from five states - Indiana, Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia and Wisonsin. Gay marriage is now legal there and couples can begin to get their marriage licenses.

By rejecting the appeals in these cases, the court left intact lower-court rulings that ruled same-sex marriage bans were unconstitutional.

October 6, 2014

Among those getting married are Oklahoma couple who in 2004 filed suit to overturn state ban

It was back in 2004 that Mary Bishop and Sharon Baldwin sued to get a marriage license in Oklahoma.

On Monday (6 October), they finally got it.

The couple were among the many in several states across the US to were able to obtain marriage licenses shortly after the US Supreme Court let stand the overturning of state marriage bans in Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin and Indiana. Colorado also began to issue licenses.

September 21, 2014

Three couples filed their case against the state's same-sex marriage ban approximately a year ago

A US judge in West Virginia is waiting on the Supreme Court before going on with the gay marriage lawsuit on his docket.

According to WOUB.org, District Judge Robert Chambers points to an 'overlap of issues' with the marriage equality case in neighboring Virginia as the reason for delay.

September 12, 2014

Veronica Romero and Mayra Yvette Rivera have been together for more than 27 years

The state of Indiana will recognize the marriage of a lesbian couple - one of whom has advanced ovarian cancer.

US District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen approved an agreement this week (11 September) as the state appeals a ruling that struck down its marriage ban.

Veronica Romero and Mayra Yvette Rivera, a couple for more than 27 years with two children, were legally married in Illinois earlier this year. They filed a suit in federal court this week seeking to have the union recognized in the state in which they live.

September 10, 2014

A total of seven cases are now vying for review by nation's highest court

The attorney generals of both Indiana and Wisconsin petitioned the US Supreme Court on Tuesday (9 September) to review appeals court rulings that struck down gay marriage bans in their states.

Plaintiffs in both cases agree with the request to have the cases heard by the nation's highest court.

The latest two states to make this request are competing with similar requests made in cases in several other states including Virginia, Utah and Oklahoma.

September 10, 2014

Virginia, Utah, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, and Indiana cases in the running as justices meet on September 29

Justices of the US Supreme Court will meet later this month (29 September) to discuss whether to take on a gay marriages case during its next term which begins in October.

The high court indicated on Wednesday (10 September) that it will meet in a private conference to consider whether to grant review of appeals in cases challenging marriage bans in Virginia, Utah, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, and Indiana.

September 6, 2014

'The status quo has not changed with today’s ruling'

J.B. Van Hollen, Wisconsin's attorney general, promises to take his battle against marriage equality to the US Supreme Court.

September 4, 2014

'...The only rationale that the states put forth with any conviction – that same-sex couples and their children don’t need marriage because same-sex couples can’t produce children, intended or unintended – is so full of holes that it cannot be taken seriously'

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled gay marriage bans in Indiana and Wisconsin are unconstitutional.

The unanimous decision was released today (4 September).

August 27, 2014

States one judge: 'There was a tradition of not allowing black and whites' to marry. 'It was a tradition. It got swept aside'

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago expressed skepticism over gay marriage bans during oral arguments on cases in in Wisconsin and Indiana on Tuesday (26 August).

One member of the three-judge panel, Judge Richard Posner, hammered Wisconsin attorney Timothy Samuelson with questions seeking justification for why his state denies marriage rights to same-sex couples.

When Samuelson said it is a ban that is rooted in tradition, Posner stated: 'That’s the tradition argument. It’s feeble!'

August 22, 2014

US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago has set oral arguments for August 26

The next big legal stage in the fight for marriage equality in the US has been set.

On Tuesday (26 August), the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago will hear oral arguments in gay marriage cases from Wisconsin and Indiana.

The Seventh Circuit's jurisdiction also includes Illinois where same-sex marriage is already legal.

The circuit courts are the final stop before the US Supreme Court which may or may not choose to hear any of the cases recently decided.

August 8, 2014

National Organization for Marriage president: Target 'insinuates' that people against gay marriage are 'akin to segregationists and racial bigots'

The National Organization for Marriage, the largest anti-gay organization in the US, is targeting one of the country's largest retailers with a boycott because of its support of gay marriage.

NOM President Brian Brown announced Thursday (7 August) a boycott against Target, a Minnesota-based chain with 2,000 stores nationwide.

The retailer this week signed on to an amicus brief supporting same-sex marriage in pending cases in Wisconsin and Indiana.

August 1, 2014

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg predicts high court will not duck marriage equality once a case is properly before the court

US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg predicts that the nation's high court will hear a same-sex marriage case by June 2016 if not next year.

Since the court, in a 5-4 decision in June 2013, gutted key provisions of the Defense of Marriage Act, federal courts have struck down gay marriage bans in several states.

Cases on appeal in such states as Utah, Indiana or Virginia could be one of those selected by the court for a landmark ruling.

July 18, 2014

Couples required to show in-state marriage license to rent atrium, rotunda, porches or plaza

It was in 2007 that Ohio opened up its Statehouse to wedding ceremonies and receptions allowing couples to rent the atrium, rotunda, porches or plaza.

This week, a 12-member panel voted to retain a policy which bans same-sex couples from taking advantage of this opportunity.

The gay couples are excluded because of a requirement that they have in-state marriage license. That is currently impossible to provide since a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage was passed in 2004.

July 10, 2014

Fred G. Thompson, who lived as a woman using the name Frances, was legally married to Frank Carrick in 1912 and a judge upheld their marriage license, convinced she was a woman despite her being born male

It turns out that LGBTI couples who marry following the striking down of Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage in June will not be the first to have legally married in the state.

In 1912 gender illusionist, singer and prostitute Frances Thompson, born biologically male as Fred G. Thompson, convinced a justice of the peace to allow her to marry Indiana native Frank Williams in the city of Crown Point.

Frances married Frank, dressed as a woman, and took his surname Williams.

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

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 1, 2014

Amy Sandler and Niki Quasney to be considered legally married as marriage equality case is being appealed

Amy Sandler and Niki Quasney are considered legally married in their home state of Indiana - again.

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals today issued an order compelling the state  to recognize their marriage while the state appeals a federal judge's decision last week to strike down the state's ban on same-sex marriage.

The appeals court order is in response to an emergency appeal filed Monday (30 June) filed by Lambda Legal because Quasney is battling Stage IV ovarian cancer.

June 30, 2014

Niki Quasney, plainitff in case that resulted in overturning of state's gay marriage ban, has terminal cancer

Amy Sandler and Niki Quasney, together 13 years and raising two daughters under the age of 3, continue their race against time.

Quasney has stage IV cancer and the couple has been leading the legal fight to have same-sex marriage recognized in their home state of Indiana.

Last Friday (28 June) they suffered a setback just days after a major triumph.