Gay Pride on Valentine’s Day in Beijing

The Wall Street Journal
February 16, 2009
The Wall Street Journal's blog on Chinese current events reports on and shows photos of a Valentine's Day protest in Beijing in support of LGBT equality. [Link]

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Straight Couples in France Are Choosing Civil Unions Meant for Gays

Washington Post
February 14, 2009
The number of straight couples uniting under France's Civil Solidarity Pact, which allows gay or straight couples to unite in a social and legal status "halfway between living together and marriage," has grown from 42 percent of the total number of people entering such agreements in 1999 to 92 percent last year. [Link]

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TALKING TO CO-WORKERS: Marriage matters in Indiana too

Guest Blogger: Greg Disney-Britton

I climb telephone poles for AT&T, America’s number one phone company and I am just as proud of that as my non-gay co-workers. Also like my co-workers, I feel passionately about marriage. I am part of a work group in Indianapolis where all four members of our team are married, including me and we all talk about our spouses openly and with respect. Being the authentic me with my co-workers has made a big difference in my attitudes about work and it all started when I got married.

I was blessed to find the right man in my life after years of hoping, but we had to make a trip to Canada to be married. It was an awesome experience but it should not have been necessary because we should have had that right here in Indiana. However, if I had not taken the trip and had this special wedding in another country, I would never have realized how important marriage equality was to me and be able to share that with others.

That weekend, I was able to feel just like every other straight American feels on their wedding day. That feeling is so fresh in my heart and it makes me want to share it with everyone I meet. We ran into many couples on our special day in Niagara Falls, and we all wished one another well. They seemed to be all straight couples caught up in the joy of marriage. It was amazing!

I can understand Americans having a difference of opinion on the subject of marriage equality. What I can't understand is how anyone, straight or gay, thinks that marriage between a gay couple in America will make the marriage of a straight couple any less meaningful. The couples at Niagara Falls certainly didn’t and we shared in each other’s joy.

Before getting married, I didn’t talk much about being gay at work – my church, my weekend entertainment or the political issues impacting me as a gay man. Now, my co-workers hear about my real life every day just as I hear about the things that concern them. There are four of us guys on my team. We wear jeans and work-boots, and we are "the guys" called in for the big emergencies. We are a team, one gay and three non-gay, and we trust each other and respect one another’s marriages.

Yes, I climb telephone poles for AT&T but I’m also an openly “married man” with all my co-workers and that has made all the difference in the world. Thanks Marty, Ryan and Todd.

***Greg Disney works for AT&T and lives in Indianapolis. He and Tahlib were married on January 28, 2008.

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Judge: Pair married in Canada can divorce in NJ

The Associated Press
February 6, 2009
Gay couples' marriages performed outside New Jersey are recognized in the state for the purpose of divorce, according to a ruling Friday by a judge deciding whether a lesbian couple married in Canada can split. [Link]

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Colombia Rules Gay Couples Must Be Granted Same Rights as Straight Unmarried Couples
January 29, 2009
In a historic decision handed down Wednesday, Colombia's Constitutional Court ruled same-sex couples must be granted the same rights as heterosexuals in common-law marriages. The court's decision means Colombia's gay couples will be awarded dozens of rights that straight, unmarried couples have enjoyed for years and follows other recent rulings that have won the nation's same-sex couples inheritance, pension, health, and social security rights. [Link]

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Foreign Policy Workers Ask U.S. To Back Benefits for Gay Partners

The Washington Post
January 27, 2009
Almost 2,200 government employees involved in foreign policy issues signed a letter delivered to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday urging the government to extend equal benefits to partners of gay employees. [Link]

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Love for All

December 2008

A Swedish ad shows a touching wedding scene of two men getting married. [Link]

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Australian Legislators Back Gay Rights

The New York Times
November 25, 2008
Australian lawmakers have approved legislation giving gay and lesbian couples virtually the same rights as non-gay couples, but have ruled out legalizing their marriages. [Link]

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New Ecuador constitution includes gay rights guarantees
September 29, 2008
The new constitution guarantees civil rights for gays and lesbians, including civil unions. It also guarantees free education through college and pensions for stay-at-home mothers and informal-sector workers. Such measures build on already popular Correa programs that provide low-interest micro-loans, building material for first-time homeowners and free seeds for growing crops. [Link]

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Brazil president defends equality for same-sex couples

Associated Press
September 18, 2008

President Silva said in an interview aired late Wednesday night by the government-run TV Brasil that politicians who oppose same-sex unions and yet seek the votes of gay men and women during elections are ''hypocrites.'' (Link)

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