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February 19, 2015

Unprecedented move is seen as a 'sign of movement' in the church

In an unprecented move Wednesday (18 February), the Vatican gave a group of gay Catholics VIP seats at Pope Francis' weekly general audience.

The 50 pilgrims from the US sat front and center in St Peter's Square but were only identified on the list of attendees as a 'group of lay people accompanied by a Sister of Loretto.'

And a Vatican monsignor skipped over New Ways Ministry entirely when he read out the list.

Nevertheless, New Ways Ministry co-founder Sister Jeannine Gramick said the gesture was a 'sign of movement' in the Catholic church.

February 16, 2015

The out lesbian is survived by her partner of 33 years

Lesley Gore, the 1960s pop star who later came out publicly as a lesbian, died on Monday of lung cancer. Her biggest hits included It's My Party, You Don't Own Me and Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows.

Gore died New York University Langone Medical Center in New York, according to the Associated Press.

'She was a wonderful human being - caring, giving, a great feminist, great woman, great human being, great humanitarian,' Lois Sasson, Gore’s partner of 33 years, told the AP.

January 24, 2015

In 1996, California's Supreme Court banned state judges from associating with groups that discriminate due to sexual orientation

California's Supreme Court voted to ban state judges from affiliating with the Boy Scouts of America.

As reported by the Associated Press, the seven judge court unanimously approved the decision on 23 January.

The justices are following a 2014 February recommendation by its ethics advisory committee.

In 1996, the state's highest court ruled judges could not belong to groups that discriminate due to sexual orientation.

January 14, 2015

The decision also applies to Idaho, the Silver State's neighbor

An anti-gay marriage organization was dealt a significant blow in its battle against LGBTI couples in Nevada.

According to the Associated Press, last week the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals declined to hear a case overturning the state's ban on same-sex marriage.

Late last year, the Coalition for the Protection of Marriage petitioned the entire court to hear its appeal.

December 25, 2014

The West African countrywill lose duty-free access to US markets

The US government has removed Gambia from a trade benefits program for abusing human rights, including a new law that imposes life imprisonment for some gay acts.

The White House did not initially give any reason why Gambia would cease being a beneficiary of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), according to the Associated Press.

December 10, 2014

Freddie Smith to be sentenced in February for  felony vehicular assault and misdemeanor driving under the influence

US soap opera star Freddie Smith has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a car crash in Ohio that left his girlfriend seriously injured.

Smith, who plays the gay character of Sonny Kiriakis on NBC's Days of Our Lives, entered pleas of guilty this week to charges of felony vehicular assault and misdemeanor driving under the influence, according to the Associated Press.

Smith will be sentenced on 18 February.

November 13, 2014

Qatar's sports minister promises 'creative solutions', but can he guarantee safety?

Gay people will be treated similar to beer at the Qatar World Cup in 2022.

Salah bin Ghanem bin Nasser al-Ali, the country's sports minister, compared gay fans and footballers who wanted to travel to the soccer tournament.

Alcohol is partially banned in the Arabic country, but is sometimes punished with flogging. Both male and female homosexuality is punishable with flogging and imprisonment of up to five years.

Al-Ali, when asked by the Associated Press, said the country will find 'creative' ways that beer could be sold.

November 6, 2014

Missourri's attorney general has vowed to appeal judge's order that licences be issued to same-sex couples

They weren't going to be taking any chances.

Immediately after a state judge struck down Missouri's ban on gay marriage Wednesday (5 November) same-sex couples began tying the knot.

'Time is of the essence,' Crystal Peairs told the Associated Press. 'We wanted to make sure we got it taken care of today.'

November 1, 2014

Each of the men were sentenced to three years in prison

Today, 1 November, an Egyptian court sentenced eight men for their appearance in a purported same-sex wedding video.

According to the Associated Press, each of the men were sentenced to three years in prison.

October 26, 2014

Four band members face charges of felony hazing and manslaughter

Four Florida A & M University band members will go to trial next week for the 2011 hazing death of gay drum major Robert Champion, Jr.

Three years ago, The 26-year-old was subjected to a brutal hazing ritual called 'crossing bus C.'

It involved band members beating him with punches, kicks, drumsticks, mallets while on a bus parked in a Orlando, Florida hotel parking lot.

October 19, 2014

'Personally I would have been very worried and saddened if there hadn't been these ... animated discussions ... or if everyone had been in agreement or silent in a false and acquiescent peace'

Catholic bishops failed to pass paragraphs supporting a more tolerant attitude toward gays.

Senior church officials were in Rome for the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family. The softer stance toward LGBTI Catholics could not gain the required two-thirds majority to pass.

October 16, 2014

Among those to wed are plaintiffs in the lawsuit that led to overturning of the gay marriage ban

Gay marriage came to Idaho on Wednesday (15 October).

More than 100 same-sex couples showed up at the courthouse in Boise ready to apply for licenses as soon as the doors opened.

'It's been such a long time coming,' Boise Councilwoman Maryanne Jordan told the Associated Press. 'It's a historic day for Boise and Idaho.'

October 11, 2014

One Johnson County couple was able to marry before Kansas Supreme Court blocked any more licenses being issued

The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday blocked the issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples - but not before one lesbian couple was able to legally wed.

For now, they remain the only married same-sex couple in all of Kansas.

According to the Associated Press, the Johnson County newlyweds are identified only Kelli and Angela. The women asked to be identified only by their first names to help protect their privacy.

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.

September 27, 2014

'However, the State urges that residents of Alaska possess the same fundamental right to retain the traditional definition of marriage'

The US state of Alaska argues citizens, not courts, have the right to define marriage.

Yesterday, 26 September, the state filed papers in federal court for a suit five same-sex couples initiated this past May. The plaintiffs insist the state's ban on marriage equality, passed by voters in 1998, violates the Constitution.

Alaska counters such decisions by citizens are essential to democracy.

September 7, 2014

'The time has come to end the divisive national debate as to whether the Constitution mandates same-sex marriage'

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wants the US Supreme Court to make a definitive ruling on gay marriage.

September 7, 2014

In her 2012 book, Rivers wanted a funeral with 'a wind machine so that even in the casket my hair is blowing just like Beyonce's'

It was the type of ceremony Joan Rivers would have loved. Or made fun of.

The 81-year-old comic's funeral was held today, September 7, at Temple Emanu-El in New York City.

The New York City Gay Men's Chorus performed Broadway tunes. Six-time Tony Award-winner Audra McDonald sang Smile and bagpipers from the New York City Police Department played New York, New York.

August 30, 2014

'There's no way I could live with myself if I thought I was diminishing another human being's ability to reach their full capacity'

Neil Abercrombie, the governor of Hawaii, thinks he lost a recent primary because he signed the bill that made gay marriage legal.

Earlier this month, the Democrat was defeated by state Senator David Ige, who also supports marriage equality.

'Republicans crossed over en masse to vote in the Democratic primary, and then the religious factor came in,' Abercrombie said, as reported by the Associated Press.

August 30, 2014

If not selected by a team, the St. Louis Rams can put the rookie on its practice squad

Michael Sam was waived by the St. Louis Rams.

The team made the announcement  today, 30 August, the day National Football League squads are required to reduce rosters to the 53-player maximum.

August 29, 2014

'I’m going to sleep really well tonight'

Michael Sam will find out on Saturday (30 August) whether or not he has earned a spot on the St. Louis Rams final 53-man roster.

The openly gay defensive end has had a solid pre-season with the team but has strong competition as he hopes to find himself still with the team for the regular season.

'I’m very confident,' Sam tells the Associated Press.

August 2, 2014

Violet Palmer and wife, Tanya Stine, have been a couple for the past 20 years
 

Violet Palmer, the first woman to referee a National Basketball Association game, married celebrity hair stylist Tanya Stine, her partner of 20 years.

The pair were married in Los Angeles yesterday (1 August).

July 19, 2014

The data used span a decade, making this a larger and longer trend examination than any previous report

A new study shows the rate of HIV diagnosis in the US has reduced by a third in the past 10 years.

The survey was published today, 19 July, by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The investigation is part of the publication's HIV research report, made public ahead of the start of the International AIDS Conference (held in Melbourne, Australia).

July 14, 2014

Publisher Jon Goldwater: 'He could have saved Betty. He could have saved Veronica ... but metaphorically, by saving Kevin, a new Riverdale is born'

This week's issue of the comic book Life With Archie will include the shocking death of the title character.

Archie will die while protecting his gay friend, Kevin Keller, from an assassin's bullet.

Keller, a military veteran, is the first gay character in the comic book franchise about the students of Riverdale High. The Life With Archie series focuses on the characters of Archie Andrews, Veronica Lodge, Betty Cooper, Jughead Jones and Reggie Mantle as adults.

June 28, 2014

But Lambda Legal vows that 'Greg Zoeller will not have the last word, justice will'

A federal appeals court put a halt to more than two days of same-sex nuptials in Indiana on Friday (27 June) by granting an emergency motion made by the state's attorney general.

Greg Zoeller asked the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals to stay a ruling made Wednesday (25 June) by a federal judge who ruled that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.