Monthly Archives: November 2011

Breaking News: New York Judge Rules Lawsuit Alleging Abuses in SSM Bill's Passage May Proceed

An update from New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms:

The Honorable Robert Wiggins, Livingston County Supreme Court Judge, has upheld New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms' (NYCF) right to present evidence questioning the legality of the process and procedure whereby same-sex "marriage" became law in New York.

The State Attorney General's office filed court papers seeking to dismiss New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms v. New York State Senate, the suit brought by NYCF and other plaintiffs that could overturn New York's same-sex "marriage" law, but Judge Wiggins' decision soundly denied that action.

Rev. Jason J. McGuire, NYCF's Executive Director and a plaintiff in the suit, said, "I'm grateful that Judge Wiggins carefully weighed the arguments and agreed that this case has sufficient merit to move forward."

The Liberty Counsel's Rena Lindevaldsen did a masterful job representing NYCF's concerns with the illegality of the process surrounding New York's passage of gay "marriage" legislation. Lindevaldsen said, "The judiciary is the only check left. We are not challenging Senate rules, but seeking a check and balance on an out-of-control legislature."

NY Archbishop Dolan: "We Were Deceived" on SSM Vote

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York City reflects on the lessons learned from this summer's push to redefine marriage in New York, and outlines what he and other Catholic bishops are doing to continue fighting for victory:

Australian Feminist Argues "Death of Marriage the Path to Equality"

Meagan Tyler argues for skipping the redefining marriage step and suggests deconstructing marriage entirely:

The big problem with marriage equality is that it's an oxymoron.

While the phrase has become a rallying cry for those in favour of making same-sex marriage legal, it ignores the way marriage functions as an institution. In the West, marriage is an institution fundamentally grounded in inequality.

In Australia, a mix of homophobia, religion and conservative politics have necessitated the 'marriage equality' position. It tries to move the debate beyond what marriage is, or should be, to a simple request that everyone should have the same access to it.

... The institution of marriage, which feminists and gay rights activists alike derided and decried in the 1970s, is now being held up as the epitome of love and all that is right with the world. Libertarians, who would normally baulk at any state intervention in private matters, are busy talking about the right of individuals to invite the state into their most intimate affairs.

... Opting out of marriage altogether will provide a quicker path to progress, as only the death of marriage can bring about the dawn of equality for all. -- The Drum Opinion (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Romney's First Mailer in Iowa Highlights Pro-Marriage Views

The Des Moines Register Caucuses blog:

Mitt Romney’s first campaign advertisements in Iowa this election cycle – a batch of oversized postcards – say he’s “the strongest Republican to beat Barack Obama.”

One says Romney will “protect our values.” So-called “values voters” – conservatives who oppose abortion and same-sex marriage – traditionally turn out in force in Iowa to cast the first votes in the GOP nominating process.

... Romney’s Iowa mailer says:

“Pro-life: Mitt Romney believes that life begins at conception and opposes abortion.

“Pro-marriage: As governor, Mitt Romney fought against gay marriage in Massachusetts. He supports a federal amendment to define marriage as between one man and one woman.

Life With Archie Comic Pushes SSM in Latest Issue

Who knew the long-running all-American Archie series could be so political and progressive?

The cover of the January 2012 edition of Life With Archie, in which Archie’s gay friend Kevin Keller gets married to his African American boyfriend, has just been released (shown above).

... Kevin, who was introduced to readers in an issue of Veronica in September 2010, was the first openly gay character to be a part of the Riverdale gang in the 70-year history of the comic.

... Archie Comics will be launching a monthly comic about Kevin In February 2012.

Denmark to Approve Gay Weddings in Church, Claims Ministers Have Right to Refuse

The Associated Press:

Denmark's government wants to allow same-sex couples to get married in formal church weddings, instead of the short blessing ceremonies that the state Lutheran Church currently offers.

The government said Wednesday it's preparing to launch a proposal in February to change Denmark's marriage laws.

.. Danish clergy would retain the right to refuse to wed gay couples without sanctions.

Just like Dutch registrars have the right to refuse? Oh wait, they don't anymore.

RNS: NOM, Other Conservative Groups, See Largest Growth

Religion News Service:

The number of religious advocacy groups in the nation’s capital has more than tripled since the 1970s, with conservative groups seeing the biggest growth, according to a new report.

... The report reflects shifting fortunes in religion and politics: the rise of the religious right 35 years ago, the decline of mainline Protestant churches and the outsized presence of the Roman Catholic Church.

Conservative groups have seen some of the largest budget increases; the National Organization for Marriage, which has racked up a string of victories in its fight against gay marriage, saw its budget grow from $3.2 million to $8.5 million between 2008 and 2009.

Bank of America, Cisco Back Down After Firing Frank Turek

Kathleen Gilbert at LifeSiteNews:

In a rare successful pushback against the pro-gay rights corporate culture, customers of Bank of America and the Cisco Corporation have won a promise from the two companies not to discriminate against employees or vendors who publicly oppose same-sex “marriage.”

The National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) Corporate Fairness Project announced Nov. 7 that both companies, which the leading gay rights group Human Rights Campaign had rated favorably, backtracked on a decision to cancel seminars by Frank Turek, who is a traditional marriage advocate.

... Cisco has now admitted it was “incorrect” to “discriminate against vendors such as Frank Turek,” while Bank of America announced that “Dr. Turek remains a vendor in good standing with us.”

Jonathan Baker, Director of NOM’s Corporate Fairness Project, said that his organization had written the boards of both companies “raising our concern and asking if company policy really permits otherwise qualified employees and vendors to be punished for speaking out on a public issue like same-sex marriage.”

Baker said that his group also encouraged Bank of America customers to urge the company not to discriminate against same-sex “marriage” supporters, resulting in 1,400 calls to the corporate complaint line.

“We received assurances from both corporations that this kind of discriminatory treatment violates corporate policy and will not happen again,” he said.

WaTimes: Marriage Activists Ramp Up Spending

The Washington Times:

The recent economic woes appear to have chilled spending by many national religious activist groups, but others — including a group that is fighting to preserve traditional marriage — spent even higher amounts despite the lean times, says a report released Monday.

... There has been “churn” and “turnover” in issues over the decades — the “temperance” and “sanctuary” movements are no longer front-page news, while new groups on behalf of post-Hurricane Katrina relief, human trafficking and gay marriage have gained visibility, he said.

One-quarter of the 212 religious activist or lobbying groups are interreligious — 54 either represent multiple faiths or advocate without specifying a particular religion.

... Those who spent more in 2009 than in 2008 included the National Organization for Marriage, a national opponent of gay marriage, which saw its spending rise 161 percent, from $3.2 million in 2008 to $8.5 million in 2009. Other groups that ramped up spending in 2009 included the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops ($1.3 million), Muslim American Society ($898,681) and CitizenLink, which is affiliated with Focus on the Family ($865,899).

Fatherless: New Documentary Questions Morality of Anonymous Sperm Donation Industry


A new documentary film released Monday explores how children conceived through anonymous sperm donations are left searching for their true identities, and questions whether the “anonymous father” industry of sperm donation should exist at all.

“Anonymous Father’s Day presents the untold stories of children of sperm donors. Featuring the heart-rendingreflections of now adult children fathered anonymously, these donor-conceived children share the pain, longing and uncertainties created by the secrecy of their conceptions,” stated a press release about the film on Monday.

The film was created by the The Center for Bioethics and Culture (CBC), producers of the award-winning documentary film Eggsploitation (2010) which focused on the egg donation industry. While the “world premiere” of Anonymous Father’s Day will be in New York City on January 29, 2012, the film is now available for DVD purchase, and can be viewed on the Internet.

Watch the trailer:

Canadian Judge Rules in Favor of Canada’s Constitution Prohibiting Polygamy


The British Columbia Supreme Court ruled today that Canada’s 121-year-old law prohibiting polygamy is constitutional.

“I have concluded that this case is essentially about harm,” said B.C. Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Bauman. “More specifically, Parliament’s reasoned apprehension of harm arising out of the practice of polygamy. This includes harm to women, to children, to society and to the institution of monogamous marriage.”

“Based on the most comprehensive judicial record on the subject ever produced, I have concluded that [there is] a reasoned apprehension of harm to many in our society inherent in the practice of polygamy,” said Justice Bauman.

“This includes harm to women, to children, to society and to the institution of monogamous marriage.”

A decision on whether the ruling will be appealed is expected to be made in December.

NC Small Baptist Church: No One Can Marry Unless Gays Can Marry

This position underscores a view of marriage: marriage is so irrelevant, that we can deny it to unions of husband and wife, because equality trumps all:

The full congregation of Raleigh's Pullen Memorial Baptist Church voted Sunday to prohibit the church pastor from legally marrying anyone until she can legally marry same-sex couples under North Carolina law.

... Among them was the pastor, Nancy Petty, who began a church discussion on same-sex marriages this summer when she told congregants signing legal marriage certificates to wed heterosexual couples while not doing the same for homosexual couples had become a burden on her conscience. -- Raleigh News Observer

Yet Another SSM Group Falls Apart

The Washington Blade (a gay newspaper):

Less than a year after its public launch that included a profile story in the New York Times, the LGBT advocacy group Equality Matters is losing its top two leaders and appears nearly defunct.

Equality Matters President Richard Socarides, a former adviser to President Clinton, and Kerry Eleveld, a former Advocate magazine reporter, announced Tuesday they will leave the media watchdog group they helped to create.

... In a December New York Times piece announcing the launch of the project, Brock said Equality Matters would “expose right-wing bigotry and homophobia wherever we find it.”

“We believe the big battle is full equality, which is gay marriage,” [David Brock Founder of Media Matters] told the Times back then.

Socarides struck a more modest tone this week.

... Shortly after their high-profile criticisms of Obama [for his public position on marriage], the group’s attention shifted to conservative targets such as the candidates for the Republican presidential nomination, as well as the National Organization for Marriage and Fox News, fueling speculation that Brock was unhappy with the attacks on the Democratic administration.

Video: How to Talk About Same-Sex Marriage at Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has come and past but many of us will be spending time with friends and family throughout the long weekend. NOM co-founder Maggie Gallagher appears in this video sponsored by the American Principles Project's Culture War Victory Fund on the topic of discussing same-sex marriage if it comes up at family gatherings:

GLAAD Asked Activists To Make This an "Awkward Thanksgiving"

SheWired reports:

It may sound a little odd at first, but the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is encouraging LGBTs and their allies to speak up and out at the holiday dinner table to make sure this Thanksgiving is an awkward one.

And here’s why.

While the LGBT community has a lot to be grateful this season, we can’t ignore the basic civil rights denied to many, nor the violence, bullying, and oppression many LGBT individuals face in a wide array of places and situations.

But GLAAD came up with this genius campaign to talk real to your loved ones on Turkey day and go ahead, “Let Aunt Betty Feel Awkward.” If enough people start a dialogue, the collective result could lead to real changes in anti-gay myths and prejudices.