Article suggested by Kristi Barnette
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People Possess Rights Too! Branded by many as the civil rights movement for the twenty-first century, the quest for LGBT civil liberties has amplified since the battle kicked off almost eight years ago. Nonetheless, LGBT individuals still continue to experience prejudice in numerous parts of American culture today.
To help straighten out the myths and to give readers some information on the strife that LGBT people have faced to get the movement to where it stands today, we assembled a brief timeline on the topic, which we hope that folks will enjoy reading.
The 30s 40s and 50s: A Tempest on the Horizon From 1920 to 1923, American, Henry Gerber, worked in Germany; and after browsing some through all-gay publications, which were openly distributed across Europe, Gerber started to become aware of the oppression that American culture had forced upon all homosexual men and woman when accusing them of daily "immoral acts."
Soon after arriving home, Gerber established the Society for Human Rights (SHR) in Chicago, the country's first known homosexual establishment.
John T. Graves quickly registered as president, and both men set up a printing shop for editing and releasing, Friendship and Freedom, America's first gay-interest magazine. However, things were rough back home. The United States throughout the 20s was actually in a status of disarray and misconception in regard to the country's sex laws.
Any sort of LGBT social practice in the 20s was looked at as inexcusable, and publishing openly-gay literature was considered obscene, which generally resulted in public dissent against all homosexuals.
Last Updated on Monday, 29 September 2014 15:33
Attn Maryland and DC couples! You can win a FREE Wedding!
Our friend Mozelle Scott-Bey, owner of An Xquisite Affair, is once again offering a free wedding package, complete with venue, DJ services, photography, catering, wedding cake, limo services and more! She has reached out to us here at www.RainbowWeddingNetwork.com to be sure we were aware the LGBTQ couples are welcome and included in this opportunity. Mozelle has been LGBTQ-friendly for many years and loves helping her lesbian brides & fabulous gay grooms plan their Dream Ceremonies.
The application process is simple, you simply need to write a letter of 350 words or less explaining where and how you first met and something exciting about yourselves that would make the participating vendors eager to work with you in creating your 2015 wedding ceremony. Detailed information about the giveaway can be found on Mozelle's website: http://www.anxquisiteaffair.com
Further contact info is also listed below.
An Xquisite Affair
Last Updated on Monday, 15 September 2014 13:36
Worth the quick 15 seconds to watch this infomercial about the mayoral candidate in RI. And yes, he's family!
The fact that his husband is included in the ad so matter-of-factly speaks volumes as to how far our minority has come in a very short time. Can you imagine this ad being produced five years ago? Ten? Fifteen??
Best of luck to Brett in Providence!
We're hoping he might come out and speak at our 2nd Annual 'Same Love, Same Rights'® LGBT Wedding Expo in Providence on August 4th!
Last Updated on Monday, 16 June 2014 12:50
By Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida
My wife and I married in Vermont in 2009, and we committed, in front of friends and family, to love, cherish and protect each other for the rest of our lives. Our son Logan, now three years old, only added to our joy as a family.
However, we live and work in Florida, a state that refuses to recognize us as a family.
To add insult to the ongoing injury of denying our marriage, Attorney General Pam Bondi has taken the position that recognizing marriages of couples like us would “impose significant harm.” Those are the words she used in a brief calling for the dismissal of a lawsuit that would recognize gay couples married in other states. Worse, AG Bondi invokes the outrageous and thoroughly debunked claim that impugns gay couples who are raising children.
"Florida's marriage laws have a close, direct and rational relationship to society's legitimate interest in increasing the likelihood that children will be born to and raised by the mothers and fathers who produced them in stable and enduring family units.”
Bondi is now trying to spin the content of the brief and distance herself from her own words, claiming she is a neutral defender of the marriage ban amendment approved by voters in 2008.
Under a hail of criticism, Bondi released a statement that attempts to walk back inflammatory portions of her brief, by pretending they don't exist. She tries to explain away the “public harm” comments as a misunderstood state’s rights argument. She doesn’t address her parenting salvo or her outrageous claim that Florida should continue to gain financially by denying gay married couples access to benefits that we pay for just like everyone else.
But Bondi can’t get around the fact that she is authorizing the state of Florida to make those pernicious arguments, which are based on invidious stereotypes about same-sex couples and our families. By way of contrast, even when it was defending DOMA, the US Department of Justice refused to rely on any asserted justifications for DOMA based on child welfare because it acknowledged the scientific consensus that same-sex parents are just as fit and capable as different-sex parents.
She also can’t get around the fact that she swore an oath to defend the Constitution of the United States as well as Florida’s. She can’t ignore the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality. She can’t ignore the 19 consecutive victories since the high court ruled handed down by judges appointed by Republicans and Democrats alike. Attorneys General and governors across the country, aware of their duty to protect the basic rights of their residents, have declined to defend anti-gay marriage bans precisely because it is clear to them that these laws are both morally and constitutionally indefensible.
Florida has changed dramatically since 2008, when voters approved an anti-gay marriage amendment. Our state now leads the South, with 57% in favor of marriage equality.
The tide has turned, and the day is coming when anti-gay marriage laws will meet the same fate as laws banning interracial marriage that limited my parent’s options.
As Judge Robert J. Shelby said in his ruling against Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage, “While the State cites an interest in protecting traditional marriage, it protects that interest by denying one of the most traditional aspects of marriage to thousands of its citizens: the right to form a family that is strengthened by a partnership based on love, intimacy, and shared responsibilities.”
My wife and I married because we love each other. We wanted to demonstrate our commitment and ensure we could take care of each other in every way possible. Our son deserves to have his parents’ marriage respected and our family protected under Florida law.
Further info available through Equality Florida's website: www.eqfl.org
Photo L. to R. Nadine Smith, with wife Andrea and son Logan
Photo Credit: Heidi Kurpiela/Ask the Locals
Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 June 2014 14:50
Does it really serve us as a minority, to include this many letters in naming our minority? At some point, it outdoes the intention of being inclusive and instead only serves to confuse whatever issue it is we're trying to focus on.
How can people outside our community actually consider the implications of marriage equality, when they are spending time trying to decipher what 'LBGTTIQQ2SA' actually stands for? Can they take our point of view seriously, when stumbling over what we call ourselves is really what most draws their attention?
Since we began RainbowWeddingNetwork 14 years ago, we have noticed how a lack of cohesiveness within our minority has dampened our efforts toward equality. Perhaps this lack of cohesiveness is still being reflected in that long litany of letters...
Yes, naming ourselves is very important indeed. But it can't be done at the expense of clarity & meaning.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 May 2014 10:48