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Lawmakers to review civil union revisions

The Stamford Advocate
March 15, 2008
A state General Assembly committee is to revisit the state's civil unions law Monday, while a decision from the state Supreme Court about the legality of denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples is pending. Anne Stanback, executive director of Love Makes a Family, said some members of her organization plan to attend Monday's public hearing to argue that civil union "fixes" don't go far enough. "You can't really fix civil unions," she said. "The only way to give same-sex couples full protections and full equality is with marriage. We appreciate that they're trying to do everything that they can, but for us the bottom line is civil unions are an inadequate substitute for marriage." [Link]

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Norway to end exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage

Aftenposten
March 14, 2008
The Norwegian government put forth a long-expected bill to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage on Friday, clearing the way for same-sex couples to secure the same marriage rights as heterosexuals. [Link]

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Psychoanalysts Support Legal Recognition of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples

Earth Times
March 12, 2008

The American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) has issued a position statement supporting the legal recognition of civil marriage for same-sex couples while opposing discrimination against same-sex couples. In recognition that gay and lesbian couples are raising children and possess the same potential and desire for life-long relationships as their heterosexual counterparts, the APsaA seeks to assist in ending the government-sanctioned discrimination against homosexual couples that denies them over 1,000 federal rights and benefits. [Link]
[Read position statement]

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NY’s Next Governor: Lauded as Consensus Builder

DiversityInc
March 12, 2008
Paterson is considered a strong consensus builder, a man whose lifelong disability and status as a racial minority have made him sensitive to others' needs and a clear and empathetic communicator. Evan Wolfson, executive director of Freedom to Marry, described Paterson as a staunch ally of the LGBT community. "He's been a long-time supporter of ending discrimination in marriage and I'm confident he would also be a strong advocate in the battles to come," Wolfson says. [Link]

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Around the Country, High Courts Follow California’s Lead

New York Times
March 11, 2008
The CA Supreme Court is the most influential state court in the nation, clearly making the outcome of the marriage equality case very important to the entire nation. At the marriage hearing, Chief Justice George quoted repeatedly from a 1948 decision of his court, Perez v. Sharp — the first state high court decision to strike down a law banning interracial marriage. Over the next two decades, the rest of the nation followed it, culminating in a similar ruling by the United States Supreme Court in 1967. (Link)

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Court Likely to Rule in Favor of the Freedom to Marry

New America Media
March 8, 2008
Former Berkeley City Attorney Manuela Albuquerque is sure the California Supreme Court will invalidate the marriage law's exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage as a violation of the California Constitution, and presents a lay person's guide to the gay marriage cases' legal terrain and the import of the justices' questions. [Link]

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OPINION: Civil Unions Aren’t Marriage

Los Angeles Times
March 8, 2008
In a 3½-hour session that sounded sometimes like a law school seminar and sometimes like a radio talk show, the California Supreme Court this week wrestled with the question of whether the state Constitution's guarantee of "equal protection of the laws" requires the recognition of same-sex couples' marriages.... The best response came from the lawyer for the city of San Francisco, which briefly granted marriage licenses to same-sex couples in 2004. "Words matter," Deputy City Atty. Therese Stewart said. "Names matter." [Link]

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MD lawmakers urged to avoid civil union ‘disaster’

Washington Blade
March 7, 2008
Steven Goldstein, chair of Garden State Equality, told Maryland legislators, “the New Jersey civil union law is a disaster. It is not working like marriage. It is proving that civil unions are no compromise.” (Link)

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MS lawmakers go after gay adoptive parents

Advocate
March 7, 2008
A bill in the Mississippi state Senate would bar cohabiting unmarried couples, including gay and lesbian couples, from adopting children. [link]

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California court ponders marriage case

Washington Blade
March 7, 2008
Questioning whether separate is equal, the California Supreme Court this week considered ending the exclusion of same-sex couples and their families from marriage. Said Evan Wolfson, "As several questions and answers underscored, California has already conceded these families exist, that they should have protections and responsibilities akin to married people. The state is trying to claim that they’re already being treated, quote unquote, equally. If all that is true, what is the reason to deny them the freedom to marry, especially in light of testimony and evidence that the denial makes their life harder?” [Link]

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