homosexual rights

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Romeo and Juliet Balcony Now Open to Same-Sex Couples

Italian landmark can now be used for same-sex civil unions

(Newser) - One of Italy's most popular spots for lovers—the balcony in Verona where Romeo supposedly pitched woo at Juliet—will soon be available to all couples, the Guardian reports. The Verona city council announced this week that all municipal venues used for heterosexual wedding ceremonies must also be available... More »

For Gay Men Who Suffered Under Paragraph 175, Justice

Germany to lift convictions handed out in post-war years

(Newser) - Paragraph 175 died in 1994, but it's taken another 22 years for those who suffered under it to find justice. Germany has announced that the tens of thousands of gay men convicted under Paragraph 175 will see that conviction annulled and may receive compensation. The Guardian has a timeline... More »

Russia Moves to Ban 'Homosexual Propaganda'

In a bid to clamp down on Western values

(Newser) - Kissing his boyfriend during a protest in front of Russia's parliament earned Pavel Samburov 30 hours of detention on a charge of "hooliganism." But if a bill that comes up for a vote later this month becomes law, such a kiss could be deemed illegal "homosexual... More »

Why Is 'Homosexual Conduct' Still Illegal in Texas?

Despite Supreme Court ruling, anti-sodomy law remains on books

(Newser) - According to the Texas state penal code, "homosexual conduct" is still a criminal offense—even though the Supreme Court deemed the state's anti-sodomy law unconstitutional eight years ago. Though the state stopped enforcing the law after the Supreme Court's decision, it's still on the books—and... More »

E-Marriages: a New Trend for Same-Sex Couples?

Skype weddings allow couples to legally marry at home

(Newser) - Same-sex marriage isn't legal in Texas, yet Mark Reed and his partner Dante Walkup recently tied the knot—in Dallas. The pair first traveled to Washington, DC, where gay marriage is legal, to register for their license. Then, back home in Texas, they gathered with 80 of their friends and... More »

Cindy McCain Slams DADT

...while her husband fights for it in Washington

(Newser) - Cindy McCain blasts “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in a celebrity-studded anti-bullying video—while her husband works to keep the measure alive in Congress. “Our political and religious leaders tell LGBT youth that they have no future,” she says in the spot. “They can’t... More »

John McCain Blocking 'Don't Ask' Repeal

As he promised to do in his primary

(Newser) - There are two things that could prevent Congress from repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell: The dwindling congressional calendar, and John McCain. Though historically open to repeal, McCain promised to preserve the law during his primary battle with JD Hayworth, the New York Times explains. Since then, he’s... More »

Carl Paladino Is Right About Gay Pride Parades

...but he's really wrong about gay marriage, writes William Saletan

(Newser) - Carl Paladino has caught a lot of flak for saying he wouldn't want his kids to see the Speedo-wearing, gyrating men that populate Gay Pride parades. And he's right, writes William Saletan for Slate . "Gay pride parades aren't the best thing to take little kids to, especially if you... More »

Gay Marriage Meets Immigration Reform

A foreign same-sex spouse can't apply for citizenship

(Newser) - Gay couples can marry in five states and Washington DC, but if one spouse is a foreigner, he or she still still can't apply for US citizenship—at least not through his or her spouse. Because the federal government doesn't recognize gay marriage, only foreign-born spouses of heterosexual citizens need... More »

Judge: US Gay Marriage Ban Is Unconstitutional

Declares federal rule interferes with states

(Newser) - A US judge in Boston has ruled that a federal gay marriage ban is unconstitutional because it interferes with the right of a state to define marriage. US District Judge Joseph Tauro today ruled in favor of gay couples' rights in two separate challenges to the 1996 Defense of Marriage... More »

Gay Vet Handcuffs Self to White House in DADT Protest

Dan Choi, second soldier arrested after rally

(Newser) - A gay Army veteran chained himself to the White House fence today to protest what he sees as President Obama’s foot-dragging on the repeal of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on homosexuals in the ranks. Lt. Dan Choi spoke at a gay-rights rally... More »

Va. Governor Backtracks, Forbids Gay Discrimination

GOP's McDonnell had eliminated clause

(Newser) - Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell today stepped back from his move that excised discrimination protection for homosexuals from rules on state hiring practice, issuing an executive directive that bias against gays is strictly forbidden in the workplace. McDonnell and state attorney general Ken Cuccinelli, a fellow Republican, contend that only the... More »

Gay Soldier Invited Back to Guard Unit

Lt. Dan Choi's return means 'don't ask' policy is on last legs

(Newser) - The reservist who was ordered discharged from his US National Guard unit last year after publicly announcing he is gay is back with that unit. Lt. Dan Choi’s discharge is still pending, and, Talking Points Memo reports, with it looking ever more likely that the Pentagon’s “don’... More »

Pol: Anti-Gay Marriage Stance 'Grounded in Prejudice'

San Diego mayor outlines his switch on issue

(Newser) - The mayor of San Diego today told the judge hearing the case against California’s gay-marriage ban that he’d changed his stance on the issue because he came to see that “the decisions I made were grounded in prejudice.” Jerry Sanders says becoming a supporter of the... More »

Hate-Crime Law Marks Fork in Road for Obama

Are more equality measures on the way, or is this the token?

(Newser) - President Obama today signed a bill extending hate-crime protection to homosexuals, a victory for equality advocates after more than a decade of pushing for such a law. But, Chris Geidner wonders, will this open the floodgates for more action—eliminating Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, for instance—or will... More »

Senate OKs Bill Giving Gays Hate-Crime Protection

Named for Shepard, it now heads to Obama

(Newser) - Physical attacks on people based on their sexual orientation will join the list of federal hate crimes in a major expansion of the civil rights-era law Congress approved today and sent to President Obama. The measure, on the congressional agenda for a decade, expands current law to include crimes based... More »

Gay Activists Gaga for the Lady

The outlandish pop singer brings her charisma to Washington

(Newser) - It became official this weekend in Washington: Lady Gaga is the new icon for the gay community, this generation’s Cher. She brought the crowds to their feet—twice—at the Human Rights Campaign dinner, where even President Obama said, “It is a privilege to be here tonight to... More »

Sign of Change? Pentagon Essay Rebukes Ban on Gays

(Newser) - A persuasive essay arguing against the military's ban on gay soldiers is raising hope among activists that a watershed moment is near. It's not so much because of the essay's familiar arguments—that "Don't Ask Don't Tell" hurts morale and violates civil rights—but because of its publication in... More »

Gates Seeks to Make 'Don't Ask' More Humane

Military may not boot gays outed by jilted lovers, blackmailers

(Newser) - The Obama administration is looking for ways to get around the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law that forbids gays from serving openly in the military, CNN reports. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he is investigating ways to make the policy “more humane,” such as not... More »

China Hosts 1st Gay Pride Fest

'Shanghai Pride' a success, though some events canceled by authorities

(Newser) - In a breakthrough for gay rights, China’s gay community came to Shanghai last week for the country’s first-ever pride festival, Global Post reports. The weeklong event featured panel discussions, film screenings, play performances, and a large party—but no parade. The fact that the government allowed the festival... More »

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