Showing posts with label Gay Ban. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gay Ban. Show all posts

March 21, 2015

Puerto Rico Governor Announces it Will Not Defend anti Gay Marriage Ban

Alejandro García Padilla, Puerto Rico, Washington Blade, gay news
                  Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro García Padilla (Public domain photo by the U.S. Department of Labor)
The Puerto Rican government on Friday announced it will no longer defend the U.S. commonwealth’s same-sex marriage ban.
“Because of sexual orientation, Puerto Rico has denied rights that others enjoy,” said Justice Minister César Miranda during a press conference in San Juan. “This is not correct.”
The announcement coincides with a brief Gov. Alejandro García Padilla’s administration filed with the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston, which is hearing a lawsuit against the island’s same-sex marriage ban.
“To the extent that commonwealth law does not afford homosexual couples the same rights and entitlements that heterosexual couples enjoy, the commonwealth recognizes that equal protection and substantive due process guarantees mandate application of heightened scrutiny in this case,” reads the brief. “Under said heightened standard, the commonwealth cannot responsibly advance before this court any interest sufficiently important or compelling to justify the differentiated treatment afforded so far to plaintiffs.”
García had previously defended the gay nuptials prohibition in the case that two women from San Juan filed in March 2014. 
Four additional same-sex couples, along with Lambda Legal and Puerto Rico Para Tod@s, a Puerto Rican LGBT advocacy group, joined the lawsuit three months later.
“The government of Puerto Rico finally recognizes that denying marriage to LGBTT people is discriminatory and cannot be justified,” said Omar Gonzalez-Pagan of Lambda Legal, which is representing the five same-sex couples in the lawsuit against the U.S. commonwealth’s same-sex marriage ban. “Same-sex partners, LGBTT people and their families are part of the rich Puerto Rican culture and society. The actions taken on this day complete the constitutional promises of justices and equality for LGBTT people in Puerto Rico.”
New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who was born in Puerto Rico, and also applauded the government’s announcement.
“We applaud and thank Gov. Alejandro García Padilla and his administration for choosing to be on the right side of history in terms of marriage equality,” she said in a statement she released with LGBT members of the New York City Council. “His change of position is heartening. Puerto Rican LGBT families should be afforded the same rights, responsibilities and respect as the rest of the families.”
Gay Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin also welcomed García’s announcement.
“My thanks to Gov. Alejandro García Padilla for demonstrating that he is a leader who is not afraid of the challenges of the present,” said Martin. “Today is a great day for my island, my heart is jumping out of my chest. How proud I am to live in a country of equality. I love Puerto Rico.”
Wanda Rolón, a Puerto Rican pastor who is a vocal opponent of marriage rights for same-sex couples, told a local radio station earlier this week that God would punish the island if García’s administration allows gays and lesbians to legally marry.

January 8, 2015

Vietnam Abolishes Ban on Same Sex Marriage

Photographer: Hoang Dinh Nam/AFP/Getty Images
This picture taken on Aug. 3, 2014 shows some same-sex couples sitting in the compound... Read More
Vietnam taking the lead in gay rights in Southeast Asia by abolishing a ban on same-sex marriage has medical doctor Thuan Nguyen planning a wedding ceremony with his boyfriend of two years. 
“I am ready to have a wedding,” he said. “Many, many young people in love are optimistic about the acceptance of gay weddings.” 
The revised law, while not officially recognizing same-sex marriage, places the communist country at the forefront of countries in Asia becoming more accepting of gay people. The National Assembly’s move is expected to attract more lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender travelers and boost Vietnam’s $9 billion tourismindustry. 
“This makes Vietnam a leader in Asia,” Jamie Gillen, a researcher of culture geography at National University of Singapore, said by phone. “Singapore just reaffirmed its ban on homosexual behaviors. Vietnam is trying to pitch itself as a tolerant and safe country.” 

Abolished Fines 

Vietnam’s new marriage law, which went into effect New Year’s Day, abolished regulations that “prohibit marriage between people of the same sex.” 
Same-sex marriages can now take place, though the government does not recognize them or provide legal protections in cases of disputes. The government abolished fines that were imposed on homosexual weddings in 2013. 
No other country in Southeast Asia has taken as big a step toward accepting same-sex marriage as Vietnam, Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch, said by phone. 
In Thailand, efforts to address same-sex laws have stalled since the ascent of the military government in May, while Cambodia, Burma and Laos have not put the issue on its legislative agenda, he said. The Philippines is considering laws to ban same-sex marriage. Indonesia and Malaysiahave “entrenched discriminatory views” against homosexuals and in Brunei, “the new penal code sets out that those seeking to be involved in gay marriage could face whippings and long prison sentences,” Robertson said. 

Foreign Visitors 

Vietnam, which looks to boost an economy that has expanded less than 7 percent annually for seven consecutive years, reduced visa requirements for seven Asian and European countries Jan. 1 to make the country more attractive to overseas tourists. Foreign visitors to Vietnam are estimated to have increased to 7.9 million last year from 7.6 million in 2013, according to government data. 
“It is getting out that Vietnam is a more friendly place” toward gay people, John Goss, director of Utopia Asia, a gay resources website based in Bangkok, said by phone. “Gays in Vietnam are certainly becoming more open. It has not ruffled any feathers as it might in some other countries in Southeast Asia. It will have a positive effect on tourism.” 
Vietnam is already seeing an influx of LGBT travelers from abroad, said Nguyen Anh Tuan, owner of Gay Hanoi Tours, which has seen bookings increase by as much as 50 percent in the past year. 
The new law “indicates to everyone that Vietnam is opening up more and welcomes everyone,” he said. “Vietnam is changing very quickly. There are bigger gay communities and gay events.” 

Tourism Impact 

Twenty-nine percent of the LGBT community in the U.S. take at least five leisure trips a year, according to research by San Francisco-based Community Marketing Inc. The community generates $100 billion in tourism business in the U.S. alone and many make overseas trips, according to the company. Forty-eight percent of gay households have annual incomes of at least $75,000, it said in its 2014 tourism survey. 
“Many of them have double incomes,” Goss said. “Gay travel tends to be recession-proof.” 
Vietnam’s lawmakers, who initially considered recognizing same-sex marriage, believed the country wasn’t ready for it, said Luong The Huy, legal officer at the Institute for Studies of Society, Economy and Environment in Hanoi, a Vietnamese non-governmental organization that advocates for minority rights. 
“They say the society in Vietnam needs some time to accept gay and lesbians in general,” he said. The revision in the law signals to the country that “same-sex marriage is not harmful to society,” Huy said. 

Vietnamese Perceptions 

Vietnamese perceptions of gays may also change with the December arrival of U.S. ambassador to Vietnam, Ted Osius, along with his husband, Clayton Bond, and their son, Huy said. 
“He promotes a very good image of a very successful person who is gay,” Huy said. “We could get more support from civil society in Vietnam because the American ambassador is gay.” 
Vietnam’s leaders allow gay organizations to be established and last year permitted a gay pride bicycle ride with rainbow flags in Hanoi, even as the government cracks down on political dissent, Robertson said. More than 150 Vietnamese dissidents are in detention, according to Human Rights Watch
Granting gays more freedoms is a way to blunt a bad human rights record, Joerg Wischermann, a researcher at the German Institute of Global and Area Studies, said in an e-mail. 
Nonetheless, Vietnam’s marriage law revision “is something extraordinary in a region in which many countries have deeply conservative societies,” he said. 
Nguyen, 43, the Hanoi doctor, said gay Vietnamese want to push for the legal rights marriage confers on citizens. When a gay couple ends their relationship, or if one were to die, there is no legal framework for how to split assets, he said. 
“The government doesn’t have problems with equal marriage,” Nguyen said. “It doesn’t have to do with the political system. This is determined by public opinion.” 
To contact the reporters on this story: John Boudreau in Hanoi at; Nguyen Dieu Tu Uyen in Hanoi at
To contact the editors responsible for this story: K. Oanh Ha at Lars Klemming

June 9, 2014

Federal Judge Strikes Down Gay Marriage Ban in Wisconsin


In Appleton, Wis. sams-sex couples are ready to tie the knot in some parts of Wisconsin after a federal judge ruled Friday that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.
U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb struck down the ban, making Wisconsin the 27th state where same-sex couples can marry under law or where a judge has ruled they ought to be allowed to wed.
It wasn't clear whether Crabb's 88-page ruling cleared the way for same-sex marriages to begin immediately, but Milwaukee and Dane county officials began issuing licenses and officiants were at the clerk's office ready to go in Dane County. Both counties were keeping clerk's office open past regular closing hours Friday.
Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says he will seek an emergency federal court order to stop the marriages in light of clerks going ahead with marriages.

Meanwhile, Outagamie and Winnebago county clerks told Post-Crescent earlier Friday, prior to the ruling, that they would not extend office hours it the ban were lifted. The clerks offices were closing up shop for the weekend when the judge issued her ruling on Friday afternoon.
"We're not going to be running any additional hours. I don't for opposite-sex couples so we're going to have the same hours," Outagamie County Clerk Lori O'Bright.
The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in February on behalf of four gay couples, then later expanded to eight, challenging Wisconsin's constitutional ban on gay marriage. Messages left with ACLU's attorneys were not immediately returned Friday.
The lawsuit alleged that Wisconsin's ban violates the plaintiffs' constitutional rights to equal protection and due process, asserting the prohibition deprives gay couples of the legal protections that married couples enjoy simply because of their gender.
State marriage bans have been falling around the country since the U.S. Supreme Court last year struck down part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.
Regardless of the wait times and uncertainties, community members are preparing for same-sex couples to marry in the Appleton area.
Fox Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Appleton will be open on Monday to perform same-sex marriages for anyone who wants a religious ceremony, said the Rev. Roger Bertschausen, the fellowship's senior pastor.
"We'll be open all day. They don't have to call us. They can just come by," Bertschausen said.
Couple Dottie Mathews and Rosie Geiser also hope to be performing weddings.
"We're licensed to do weddings, I'm an ordained minister, Rosie is a lay minister. We hope next week we're really busy performing wedding ceremonies for people," Mathews said.
Voters amended the Wisconsin Constitution in 2006, to outlaw gay marriage or anything substantially similar. The state has offered a domestic partner registry that affords gay couples a host of legal rights since 2009, but its future is in doubt; the conservative-leaning Wisconsin Supreme Court is currently weighing whether it violates the constitution.
Republican Gov. Scott Walker, a potential 2016 Republican candidate for president, has a long history of opposing gay marriage and Wisconsin's 2009 domestic registry law. But in recent months he's avoided talking directly about the state's ban, which he supported, saying it's an issue that needs to be decided by the courts and state voters who can amend the constitution.
Walker's likely Democratic challenger in the governor's race, Mary Burke, supports legalizing gay marriage.
The Associated Press

February 27, 2014

The Fat Republican Lady Sang Brewer Vetoes Anti Gay Ban

 Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer said Wednesday that she has vetoed a bill that would have allowed businesses that asserted their religious beliefs the right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers.
Opinions have been sharply divided over the politically charged measure, with both sides ramping up pressure on Brewer after the state's Republican-led legislature approved the bill last week.
Brewer said she made the decision she knew was right for her state.
"I call them as I see them, despite the cheers or the boos from the crowd," she said, calling the bill "broadly worded" and saying it could have unintended consequences.
Her announcement spurred cheering and hugs by protesters of the bill in Phoenix.
The measure, known as SB 1062, would have given Arizona businesses that assert their religious beliefs the right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers.
Opponents said it encouraged discrimination against gays and lesbians, while supporters argued it allowed for religious freedom.
Brewer returned home on Tuesday from a weekend in Washington with her state roiling over a values clash between arch conservatives and gay rights advocates. The state battle has national implications, as the issues it deals with play out in different ways in courts, state legislatures and on Main Street across the country.
The Arizona measure is particularly pointed and has vocal supporters behind it. They contend it's their legal right to oppose what they see as a gay-rights agenda nationally.
Opinion: Why I put this sign in my pizzeria window
In addition to gay rights organizations, many businesses have sharply criticized the measure, saying it would be bad for Arizona's economy and could lead to discrimination lawsuits, boycotts and other disruptions.
Before she vetoed the bill, Brewer wouldn't reveal her intentions in an interview with CNN on Monday in Washington, where she attended a meeting of governors.
"I can assure you, as always, I will do the right thing for the state of Arizona," she said.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer weighs options on anti-gay measure
Economic concerns
The bill also drew fire from some Republican lawmakers with generally social conservative beliefs.
Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake publicly urged Brewer to veto the measure, citing worries about the economic impact on the state's businesses.
Former Massachusetts governor and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney recently tweeted that a veto of the bill was the right course.
Romney weighs in, Obama silent on Arizona SB 1062
 Yarbrough: The distortion is stunning Who is behind the Ariz. anti-gay bill? LZ to Cuccinelli: You're a homophobe McCain: Anti-gay law hurts Arizona
Large businesses including Apple, American Airlines, AT&T, and Intel voiced opposition, and the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee expressed concerns.
State Rep. Heather Carter, one of three state house Republicans who voted against this bill, said her phone started ringing as soon as it passed the state's Senate.
A "groundswell" of phone calls and e-mails from friends, family, and other people she respects, she said, told her "you can't vote for this bill, it's a bad bill."
This reaction, she said, told her something. She could not vote for the bill if there was "even the off-chance that discrimination could happen."
But supporters of the bill have been just as vocal.
The measure, which was pushed by the Center for Arizona Policy, a conservative group opposed to abortion and same-sex marriage, has also drawn staunch support from those who say the federal courts have increasingly pushed a pro-gay rights agenda.
Freedom or oppression? That's the question for Arizona's SB 1062
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said on his show that Brewer is "being bullied by the homosexual lobby in Arizona and elsewhere" on the measure.
A double standard?
Supporters also see, in the opposition, a double standard in how the rights of gays and lesbians are supported versus those who have conservative religious views.
 Finding lawmakers to defend SB-1062 Conservative groups back Ariz. bill Is Brewer being 'bullied' to veto bill? CEO: Arizona is a welcoming state
"I think what we need to do is respect both sides. We need to respect both opinions," Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann said Wednesday. “ ust like we need to observe tolerance for the gay and lesbian community, we need to have tolerance for the community of people who hold sincerely held religious beliefs."  
CNN’s Leigh Ann Caldwell, Ana Cabrera and Dana Bash contributed to this report.

Editorial and comments from the publisher:SEE: adamfoxie: When Republican Fat Lady Sings

It took her a few (maddening) days, but Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) did the right thing. She vetoed that horrible bill that would have made it legal to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people by claiming that doing so violated their “sincerely held religious beliefs.” But this sensible and just end isn’t the best part of all this.
Never before have I seen such full-throated tri-partisan opposition to a piece of anti-gay legislation. By tri-partisan I mean Democrats, Republicans and corporations. That Democrats were against the measure was a no-brainer. That Republicans and businesses joined them to not only decry the bill’s passage bill but to also demand that Brewer veto it was remarkable.
Arizona’s two U.S. Senators, John McCain (R) and Jeff Flake (R), urged Brewer to veto the bill. Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, did the same. Three state Senators who voted for the noxious statute changed their minds. In a letter to Brewer last Friday, the head of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council warned that the “legislation will likely have profound, negative effects on our business community for years to come.”
Because next year’s Super Bowl is set to kick off in Glendale, Ariz., the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee released a statement to declare “We do not support this legislation.” It added, “We share the NFL’s core values which embrace tolerance, diversity, inclusiveness and prohibit discrimination.” Meanwhile, the NFLspokesperson said yesterday, “We are following the issue in Arizona and will continue to do so should the bill be signed into law.” And then there was the cavalcade of corporations, including Apple, Marriott and American Airlines, that reached out to Brewer’s office to urge a veto. Delta Airlines was more blunt in discussing what might happen if SB 1062 is signed into law.

The comments from professional gays and gays on the sides that don’t follow stories until something big comes out and then the comments are sad because they lock background information of the why and how come this or that happened. But setting that on the sides the conversation is been great and representing who we are, a very diverse community with no two alike even though we are portrayed that way. There is one thing in which the community got together in unionism about no more to the closet and no more abuses. You wont sell me a cake for my wedding if you know Im gay or you wont allowed me stay in your motel because you believe Im corrupted and will corrupt your bed.

You have a right to believe that but if you are going to have a public business is going to be for the public and you can’t keep me out if Im just a customer with his money to pay.
That is part of the argument on the Arizona gay ban bill the Gov Brewer’s Veto. 

Let this fool no one that Gov. Brewer is a hater governor tied down to the tea party. However because she is not a super good candidate she needs help from her party on those pesky elections, The core of the Republican party believes that the fight for gay rights in this country, what ever they are is lost. They know they most get on the train before it leaves the station but you have this massive power in money and strings from the evangelicals, they are so powerful that they help make laws in Russia, Uganda, Cameroon to execute gays or put them in jail for ever. 

Just because they are gay and the government thinks is against the Bible the bible they themselves don’t follow.These are the type of people behind the stubborn non common sense battle we fight in the trenches of the halls of governments and court houses in the southern states, where they are based. 

They have a non stop money producing cow with their TV channels and shows asking for donations in the US and around the world. They are involved in programs  “Like’save’ the children” and many others, They try to save the children but they have to take their cut which will always be over 20% and more close to 60%.

The power that they hold is enough to make the Republicans buckle on negotiations on the budget and produce all these strings attached on bans on the state constitutions against gays. Bans that have and will not prevail in court and will be struck down like in Texas and others.

It’s prudent that when someone makes the right decision one should be padded in the back. I personally will not pad in the back a snake that decided not to bite me. Thanks Ms.Anaconda but lunch with a mouse or goat I wont buy you, just in case you going back to being a vicious snake. 

Of all the Governors with the exception of may be Texas, on the 50 states she has been the most vicious against, gay rights, marriage,immigration, helping the poor, schools, housing, medical care.
She will still be against us but probably with less speeches  condemning us. But conversion for this woman is not possible unless she has a gay relative no one knows about. She will still be that Republican Governor that bucked to her interest not to her conscience.

Thank you for reading. The door is open for any comments below.
Adam Gonzalez 

In Depth Reporting in chronological order on Page 10 :

February 26, 2014

Pressure on Brewer to veto Anti Gay Ban is Working

All signs indicate Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer will likely veto politically-charged legislation that supporters say promotes religious freedom and opponents contend discriminates against gays and lesbians.
Brewer did not signal her intention either way in an exclusive interview with CNN on Monday at the National Governors Association meeting in Washington.
"I can assure you, as always, I will do the right thing for the state of Arizona," she said.
But some Arizona Republicans who know her well say they are confident those comments mean Brewer will almost surely reject the bill that is generating nationwide controversy.
The Republican-led measure would allow Arizona business owners to deny service to gay and lesbian customers as long as they assert their religious beliefs.
Brewer is scheduled to return to Arizona on Tuesday, and a source tells CNN those familiar with her thinking say she will likely spend at least one full business day in the state before acting.
"I'm going to go home, and when I receive the bill, I'm going to read it and I'm going to be briefed on it. We have been following it. And I will make my decision in the near future," Brewer told CNN.
She has until Saturday to sign or veto the bill. If she does nothing, it automatically becomes law.
Arizona GOP sources say Brewer considers herself a pro-business governor -- someone who above all else wants to protect and promote Arizona's economic interests.
They say she knows full well there will be economic consequences for the state if it has a law on the books perceived to effectively codify discrimination.
"I have a history of deliberating and having an open dialogue on bills that are controversial, to listen to both sides of those issues, and I welcome the input, and information that they can provide to me. And certainly I am pro-business, and that is what's turning our economy around, so I appreciate their input, as I appreciate the other side," Brewer said.
Business leaders in Arizona and around the country, including the chief executive of American Airlines, have urged Brewer publicly and privately to veto the bill.
Approval also is likely to trigger lawsuits.
The bill was pushed by the Center for Arizona Policy, a conservative group opposed to abortion and same-sex marriage.
The group argues the proposal protects people against increasingly activist federal courts.
Brewer vetoed a similar bill last year, arguing that the state legislature should focus on more pressing issues, such as a Medicaid expansion plan she was promoting.
Sources say she is concerned about this bill taking away from other issues she is now pressing, such as overhauling Arizona’s child protective services system.

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