Florida court to hear marriage equality case July 2

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Tuesday, 01 July 2014 10:17

A Florida trial court in Miami on July 2 will hear oral arguments on a motion filed by six same-sex couples and Equality Florida Institute challenging Florida laws barring same-sex couples from marriage. The couples will ask the court to strike down the state’s marriage ban and order the state to allow same-sex couples to marry.

The plaintiffs argue that Florida’s ban on marriage equality cannot stand in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in June 2013 that the federal “Defense of Marriage Act” violates the federal constitutional guarantees of equal protection and due process.

ACLU sues after Indy police tell woman to remove bumper sticker

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Monday, 30 June 2014 14:06

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a woman who was pulled over and interrogated after her bumper sticker caught the attention of Indianapolis police officers. The ACLU alleges a violation of the woman's First Amendment and Fourth Amendment rights.

The complaint says that on June 17, Pamela Konchinsky of Indianapolis was turning into the Merchants Garage on South Meridian Street in her silver Toyota minivan when two Indianapolis Metropolitan Police officers entered the garage behind her. One of the officers told Konchinsky that she was being detained because of a bumper sticker taped to the rear window of her minivan, which read: "Unmarked Police Car." The officer told Konchinsky that people would think she was impersonating a police officer and that someone might shoot her.

Supreme Court rejects challenge to California law banning ex-gay therapy

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Monday, 30 June 2014 07:58

The U.S. Supreme Court on June 30 announced it has rejected a challenge to California's law that bars so-called "ex-gay" therapy for minors.

The justices, in reaching that decision, let stand an appeals court ruling that said California's ban on so-called conversion therapy for minors doesn't violate the free speech rights of licensed counselors and patients seeking treatment.

Charlie Crist files legal brief supporting marriage equality in Florida

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Friday, 27 June 2014 11:03

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, who is again running for the office in November, has filed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of marriage equality in the state.

Crist filed the brief in Pareto v. Ruvin, which is set for a hearing on July 2 before Judge Sarah Zabel in the Eleventh Judicial Circuit Court in Miami. 

President vows to sign executive order to protect transgender workers

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Tuesday, 01 July 2014 06:59

President Barack Obama announced on June 30 that he instructed his staff to prepare not one but two executive orders intended to protect LGBT workers.

One order, previously announced, would ban federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Wisconsin reacts to Hobby Lobby ruling

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Monday, 30 June 2014 10:07

The U.S. Supreme Court on June 30 ruled that some for-profit private corporations, including the arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby, can deny coverage of birth control to their employees based on the religious beliefs of the business owners.

 The 5-4 decision of the court brought this reaction from Tanya Atkinson, vice president of public affairs and education at Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin: “The decision to use birth control is a woman’s personal decision and her boss should not be able to interfere with her ability to access this important health benefit. Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin remains focused on making sure that women have access to the method of birth control that is best for them, without cost or other hurdles standing in the way.”

LGBT Pride celebrated around the world

Written by Associated Press
and WiG reports
Monday, 30 June 2014 05:59

After a year of numerous same-sex marriage victories, gay Pride parades and celebrations attracted millions of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and their supporters.

New York's Fifth Avenue became one giant rainbow on June 29 as thousands of participants waved multicolored flags while making their way down the street. Politicians including Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo were among those walking along a lavender line painted on the avenue from midtown Manhattan to the West Village.

Amid unprecedented legal momentum for same-sex marriage, Wisconsin couples remain in limbo

Written by Lisa Neff
and Louis Weisberg,
Staff writers
Thursday, 26 June 2014 14:16

Gary Jones holds a rainbow flag in front of the Racine County Courthouse. — Photo: AP/Scott Anderson/Journal Times

As gay couples in Wisconsin waited in legal limbo in mid-June, equality foes continued working to defend anti-gay amendments in the courts and marched on Washington.

Obama encourages Pride celebrants to work for progressive causes

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Monday, 30 June 2014 15:57

President Barack Obama, with the first lady by his side, encouraged those gathered for the White House's LGBT Pride celebration to work for other progressive causes.

The president praised those assembled at the White House for June 30 for their passion and drive for equal rights for LGBT people.

Selfie satisfaction: Today's selfie is yesterday's portrait

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Monday, 30 June 2014 08:31

Selfie satisfaction: New techology for an old idea.

When the Supreme Court meets on Monday for the final time this session, the justices will issue their much-anticipated ruling on a case pitting the religious rights of employers against the right of women to choose their form of birth control.

Supreme Court knocks down buffer zone at abortion clinics in Massachusetts

Written by Wisconsin Gazette Thursday, 26 June 2014 09:36

The U.S. Supreme Court on June 26 struck down a 35-foot protest-free zone outside abortion clinics in Massachusetts.

The justices were unanimous in that ban on protests violates the First Amendment.