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Old 06-12-2010, 10:50 AM   #261
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Iceland passes gay marriage law in unanimous vote | Reuters

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Iceland passes gay marriage law in unanimous vote
Fri, Jun 11 2010

REYKJAVIK (Reuters) - Iceland, the only country in the world to have an openly gay head of state, passed a law on Friday allowing same-sex partners to get married in a vote which met with no political resistance.

The Althingi parliament voted 49 to zero to change the wording of marriage legislation to include matrimony between "man and man, woman and woman," in addition to unions between men and women.

Iceland, a socially tolerant island nation of about 320,000 people, became the first country to elect an openly gay head of state in 2009 when Social Democrat Johanna Sigurdardottir became prime minister after being nominated by her party.

"The attitude in Iceland is fairly pragmatic," said Gunnar Helgi Kristinsson, a political scientist at the University of Iceland. "It (gay marriage) has not been a big issue in national politics -- it's not been controversial."

The prime minister's sexual orientation garnered far more interest among foreign media than in Iceland, where the attitude toward homosexuality has grown increasingly relaxed in the past two or three decades, Kristinsson added.

Iceland's protestant church has yet to decide whether to allow same-sex marriages in church, although the law says "ministers will always be free to perform (gay) marriage ceremonies, but never obliged to."

The largely protestant countries of northern Europe, including Sweden, Norway and Denmark, have all endorsed some form of civil union between same-sex couples, but the issue creates more controversy in Mediterranean Catholic nations.

In the United States, gay marriage remains a frought political issue, with laws varying widely from state to state. Vermont was the first state to allow same-sex civil unions in 1999, followed by Massachusetts and Connecticut and others.
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Old 06-12-2010, 12:55 PM   #262
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Welcome to the 21st century Iceland!
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Old 06-12-2010, 01:22 PM   #263
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Welcome to the 21st century Iceland!
If only whales were gay.
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Old 06-12-2010, 06:00 PM   #264
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The armed forces no longer has a specific policy for gay and lesbian members, and some uniformed personnel march in Pride parades.

Serving with pride


Jon Tattrie
Metro Edmonton

11 June 2010 05:45

In the past 20 years, the Canadian Forces has gone from being a homophobic organization that actively hounded out gay and lesbian members, to one of the world’s leading advocates of open integration.

Rana Sioufi, a spokeswoman for the Forces, says after abolishing the don’t ask, don’t tell policy in 1992, the armed forces no longer has a specific policy for gay and lesbian members and uniformed personnel regularly march in pride parades and marry in base chapels.

“Members who are same-sex partners are entitled to the same respect and dignity as heterosexual married couples or common-law partners,” Sioufi says.

That’s a long way from the treatment Michelle Douglas received in 1989. She complied with the secretive policy by not revealing she was a lesbian, but the special investigations unit kicked in the closet door.

Douglas was interrogated on the suspicion she was gay and ultimately dismissed on the grounds that she was “not advantageously employable due to homosexuality.”

“it was a very, very different time,” the Toronto woman says. “There was a sense that gays in the military were somehow tantamount to criminals. It was a really sad approach.”

Douglas fought back in court and her action led to the Forces abandoning don’t ask, don’t tell in 1992. That paved the way for rapid change.

"It was a very unpleasant experience at the time ... But in the end, Canada did the right thing, and i’m very proud of that,” she says.

That experience is being studied carefully south of the border, where U.S. President Barack Obama is poised to repeal the don’t ask, don’t tell policy U.S. Armed Forces installed in 1993.

Halifax resident Jennifer Paty saw its effects first hand during her sparkling 20-year career in the U.S. Navy, which ended in 1994. The second she was out of the forces, she came out of the closet and has since fought hard against the policy.

“It was such a betrayal,” she says of the policy she believes forces people to lie about who they are and who they love. “It was heartbreaking.”

Paty, now a minister in the Safe Harbour Metropolitan Community Church, hopes the U.S. can follow her new home’s example.

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Old 06-14-2010, 12:28 PM   #265
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Good for Canada and Iceland . Excellent news.

So much for "U.S.A. #1!", eh?

Angela
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Old 06-14-2010, 05:46 PM   #266
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If only whales were gay.
I wonder if there will come a day when you feel embarrassed about pretty much everything you've ever said on this topic.

Sort of like when I found my diary from years ago and had to cringe at most of the things in there. Of course, I wrote them when I was 10 and not an adult, sentient being.
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Old 06-14-2010, 07:02 PM   #267
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Of course, I wrote them when I was 10 and not an adult, sentient being.
"Adulthood" and "sentience" don't necessarily go hand-in-hand.
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Old 06-16-2010, 11:27 AM   #268
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hey guys, look! you see? it's not at all about hate or targeting a minority or being a big, nasty bully. it really is all about protecting the children and stuff and not at all about making sure that faggots and dykes know they're fucked up and weird and not-as-good-as-you. nothing punitive or hateful here at all!

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Prop. 8 backers target 18,000 same-sex marriages
Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer
Wednesday, June 16, 2010

(06-15) 17:47 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- As the trial over California's prohibition on same-sex marriage enters its final stage today, the ban's sponsors are urging the judge to go a step further and revoke state recognition of the marriages of 18,000 gay and lesbian couples who wed before voters passed Proposition 8.

Such an order would honor "the expressed will of the people," backers of the November 2008 ballot measure said Tuesday in their final written filing before Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker.

Andrew Pugno, an attorney for Prop. 8's backers, said in an interview that the sponsors aren't asking Walker to nullify the 18,000 marriages, but only to rule that government agencies, courts and businesses no longer have to recognize the couples as married.

Lawyers for two same-sex couples who sued to overturn Prop. 8, on the other hand, are asking Walker to lift the marriage ban permanently. The measure violates the constitutional guarantee of equality, they argued, and must be struck down "regardless of its level of public support."

Walker heard 12 days of testimony in his San Francisco courtroom in January in the nation's first federal court trial on the constitutionality of a law defining marriage as a male-female union. Among those who took the stand were the plaintiff couples - two women from Berkeley and two men from Burbank - and a parade of academic witnesses who testified about the history and meaning of marriage and the status of gays and lesbians in society.

The judge has scheduled closing arguments to last all day today. His ruling, which could be weeks away, will be the first round in a battle likely to reach the U.S. Supreme Court within two years.

Walker sent both sides a list of questions to be addressed in the arguments and let them respond initially in writing. In their answers Tuesday, Prop. 8's sponsors argued that the state has numerous legitimate reasons to define marriage traditionally - to guard children's welfare, maintain social stability, and honor voters' moral and religious views.

"Moral disapproval of homosexual conduct is not tantamount to animus, bigotry or discrimination," said Charles Cooper, lawyer for Protect Marriage, the Prop. 8 campaign organization. "On the contrary, religions that condemn homosexual conduct also teach love of gays and lesbians."

Theodore Olson, lead attorney for the couples challenging Prop. 8, called the measure "an attempt to enforce private moral beliefs about a disfavored minority." He said the Yes on 8 campaign, supported by the Roman Catholic and Mormon churches, had told voters that same-sex relationships are immoral and had exploited fears that gays menace children.

Walker also asked both sides what he should do if he found Prop. 8 unconstitutional. Its sponsors replied that the only potential legal flaws in the measure were supplied by the California Supreme Court and could be removed by interpreting the measure more broadly.

The state court ruled in May 2008 that gays and lesbians had the right to marry the partner of their choice. After Prop. 8 overturned that ruling six months later, the California court upheld the measure while also affirming the legality of 18,000 same-sex marriages performed before the election.

Gay rights advocates argued that the unequal treatment of couples who married at different times was one of many reasons to overturn the ballot measure. But Cooper said Tuesday there was a better way to treat both groups of couples equally while respecting the people's will - "sustaining Proposition 8 by giving it retrospective effect," that is, deny state recognition to the pre-election marriages.
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Old 06-16-2010, 12:26 PM   #269
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But but but... they applaud the gay singers.

That should count for something, right?

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Old 06-16-2010, 12:39 PM   #270
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Quote:
"Andrew Pugno, an attorney for Prop. 8's backers, said in an interview that the sponsors aren't asking Walker to nullify the 18,000 marriages, but only to rule that government agencies, courts and businesses no longer have to recognize the couples as married."
...uh...call me crazy, but that sounds an awful lot like nullifying to me:

nul·li·fy /ˈnʌləˌfaɪ/ [nuhl-uh-fahy]
–verb (used with object), -fied, -fy·ing.
1. to render or declare legally void or inoperative: to nullify a contract.
2. to deprive (something) of value or effectiveness; make futile or of no consequence.

and

nul·li·fy (nŭl'ə-fī')
tr.v. nul·li·fied , nul·li·fy·ing , nul·li·fies
1. To make null; invalidate.
2. To counteract the force or effectiveness of.

Hm. Yeah.

I want to know how they feel about the voters out there whose moral and religious views actually allow them to support gay marriage? Yes, there are people out there like that, did these people forget that or not realize that? Do those voters not matter? And if so, how do they intend to reconcile that? And if religious people who are anti-gay marriage can be taught to love and respect homosexuals, why is it so freakin' hard for them to support gay marriage, then?!?! I don't understand. Not to mention, God gave everyone free will, right? Well, gay people are simply exercising said free will, in "choosing" to be gay, as these people seem to think is the way it's done, and choosing to get married. Wouldn't the religious people trying to stop this be overriding their free will, therefore overriding what God allows?

Gah. This whole thing's just so insane and confusing and stupid. I hope the anti-gay crowd loses this fight, and loses it big. I wish I lived out in California, I'd gladly be marching alongside the pro-gay marriage people.

Angela
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:35 PM   #271
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Frankly, I think that gay people that voluntarily remain in a church that officially hates them ("homosexuality is an ideology of evil" is official church policy) need their heads examined.



Random piece of trivia. Neil Tennant, the singer in the Pet Shop Boys, was raised Roman Catholic and once considered entering the priesthood.
In the words of Dara O'Briain "once your in the Catholic church, you can never really leave. Even if you run off and joined the Taliban, you'd simply be considered a bad Catholic. There's no opt out website."
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Old 06-17-2010, 02:29 PM   #272
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i am *very* nervous about predicting anything, but anti-gay queen Maggie Gallagher appears to have given up hope:

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"Chuck Cooper is a heckuva lawyer. At stake in this case is the future of marriage in all 50 states, and he's right that this attempt to shut down the debate by constitutionalizing gay marriage will backfire. Americans have a right to vote for marriage. Ted Olson doesn't seem to understand the argument, and judging from today's exchanges neither does Judge Walker. I expect Judge Walker will overrule Prop 8. But millions of Americans do understand why marriage is the union of husband and wife and I believe the majority of the Supreme Court will as well."

Prop8Case.com

going to be very interesting.

from all the media that i can find, which, admittedly, is very pro-gay, it seems that Olsen/Boies absolutely demolished the defense.

but we'll see.

it could get really nasty, because the judge is gay. expect the anti-gay crowd to pounce on that if they are displeased with the ruling. already, Maggie is focusing not on Olsen/Boises but on Walker, who by all other accounts, has been superb.
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Old 06-17-2010, 03:14 PM   #273
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Thanks for the update, Irvine, that's very interesting. Especially the details of the whole situation (oh, yes, I can fully believe the anti-gay crowd will claim a bias should they lose this fight). If that's indeed true that Olson and Boies put up one hell of a fight and made an incredibly strong case, then good on them for that, that's fantastic . They mentioned this story on the news last night, about how it could potentially go to the Supreme Court. It'll be an interesting day if and when that happens.

Fingers crossed that this leads to good news. Here's hoping, Irvine .

Angela
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Old 06-17-2010, 07:30 PM   #274
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it could get really nasty, because the judge is gay.
Are you shitting me?

Did you see the article in the LA Times this morning? He was asking very pointed question of the anti attorneys. If he rules in favor of the Constitution, he'll be an "activist" judge, of course.
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Old 06-17-2010, 08:01 PM   #275
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it could get really nasty, because the judge is gay. expect the anti-gay crowd to pounce on that if they are displeased with the ruling.
It's like letting a black judge hear a civil rights case or something.
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Old 06-17-2010, 09:51 PM   #276
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it's quite clear that the reproduction argument has no merit. biological children are not a requirement for marriage.

if the anti-gay pro-h8 people wanted to make their stand, it should be over the whole "getting to vote on the rights of a minority/will of the voters" thing.

at least in my stupid opinion.

it really is nice how well Olsen/Boise have laid out the whole animus thing. it's patently obvious that the motivations behind Prop 8 were inspired by the will of the voters to deliberately persecute a minority.
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Old 06-17-2010, 09:55 PM   #277
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From the article I read, and most of the arguments here, it seems that all they have is "Nuh-uh."
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Old 06-17-2010, 10:21 PM   #278
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From the article I read, and most of the arguments here, it seems that all they have is "Nuh-uh."


which is another word for animus. the failure to recognize gays as fully human and choosing to view them as defective heterosexuals.
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Old 06-17-2010, 10:44 PM   #279
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Sigh.
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Old 06-17-2010, 11:36 PM   #280
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well, come on. we can't biologically produce children. with one another.

clearly, you're defective if you cannot have children of your own.

even worse if you choose not to.

for shame.
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