Friday, July 06, 2012

Know Your LGBT History - New York passes marriage equality law

A little over a year go, New York passed a bill allowing gay couples to marry. It was a long fight and the victory was well earned by those fighting for it:

So why am I posting this? Because it is a historical moment in gay history and also, just a few hours ago, this happened:

A state appeals court rejected a challenge to New York's year-old same-sex marriage law Friday, ruling closed-door negotiations among senators and gay marriage supporters, including Gov. Andrew Cuomo, did not violate any laws.

The Appellate Division of state Supreme Court in Rochester ruled against gay marriage opponents who argued that Republican state senators violated New York's open meeting rules ahead of the law's passage last year.

The marriage law was given final legislative approval by the state Senate after weeks of intensive lobbying and swiftly signed by Cuomo, making New York the largest state to legalize same-sex weddings. Same-sex couples began marrying by the hundreds on July 24, 2011, the day the law became official.

"The court's decision affirms that in our state, there is marriage equality for all, and with this decision New York continues to stand as a progressive leader for the nation," Cuomo said after the court's ruling.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, whose office argued for the state, called the decision "a great victory for marriage equality."

New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms said Cuomo and another gay marriage supporter, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, met behind closed doors with the Senate's Republican majority in violation of the open meeting law.

The appeals court heard the case after acting state Supreme Court Judge Robert Wiggins in Livingston County ruled in November that he didn't have enough facts to rule on whether the open meetings law was violated. Wiggins dismissed other grounds for the legal challenge brought by the group.

New York's open meeting law requires public access to the deliberations of legislative bodies, but Schneiderman argued that the Republican caucus with invited guests was exempt, even if the guests aren't in the same party. In a 5-0 ruling, the court agreed.

BOOM! A frivolous lawsuit bites the dust and gay couples enjoy another victory lap!

Past Know Your LGBT History posts:

'Religious right head - Anderson Cooper coming out might make her listeners vomit' and other Friday midday news briefs

Janet Mefferd Warns Listeners They Might Vomit from Story about Anderson Cooper Coming Out - And that's not the most infuriating part of this story. Read what she says about what she does when her child tells her that he/she has a stomach ache. I would NEVER say that to my child.  It just illustrates the point that some folks who call themselves Christian are anything but.
Push to Ban Gay Marriage Flagging in Iowa - Let me tell NOM, PLEASE!
  Why Frank Ocean's Coming Out is More Significant than Anderson Cooper's - An excellent piece by my online buddy Rod McCullom (yes I am name dropping)  

Maggie tells us 'not this, not now' as if we're spoiled teenagers seeking a later curfew - Maggie Gallagher has to be on "that stuff" if she thinks we will let her determine when we should seek our rights.

 Essex: Head praises ‘greatly loved’ trans teacher - A story like this proves that religious right lies don't always win the day. 

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NOM keeps pushing phony victim Damien Goddard

On NOM's blog is the following:

if you have a chance, take a look at this video of NOM's Marriage Anti-Defamation Alliance spokesman Damian Goddard speaking about his "re-conversion" to faith, and his decision to stand up for marriage. He's paid a bigger price for it than most of us will ever be able to equal:

That's the story. Now here is the reality of the incident in question:

Rogers Sportsnet fired Damian Goddard as an on-air host last month following his tweets on a debate sparked by New York Rangers forward Sean Avery's support of same-sex marriage.

Goddard tweeted in support of hockey agent Todd Reynolds, who used Twitter to voice his opposition to Avery's position.

Dave Rashford, Sportsnet's director of communications, said Goddard was fired because "it had become clear that he is not the right fit for our organization."

Labour lawyer William Gale calls Goddard's firing a "clear violation" of his freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

Gale says it gives the impression that Goddard's Catholic beliefs are grounds for dismissal and sets a dangerous precedent for all Canadians.

"I completely and whole-heartedly support Todd Reynolds and his support for the traditional and true meaning of marriage," Goddard, a lifelong Roman Catholic, tweeted from his personal Twitter account on May 10.

. . . Rashford said Goddard is aware of the "well documented" reasons why he was terminated by Sportsnet.

"Out of respect for our employees we do not discuss personnel issues in the press," Rashford said Thursday in an email. "We will, however, bring forward the facts during any proceeding initiated by Mr. Goddard."

I personally would love to hear about those other reasons. It appears that Goddard may be another phony victim that NOM is pushing as a part of its failed Marriage Anti-Defamation Alliance. NOM started the endeavor to show how marriage equality would supposedly cause some Christians to be discriminated against. But so far, the majority of examples NOM pushed has backfired on the organization:

According to Equality Matters:

 . . . out of NOM’s nine Marriage ADA stories, three weren’t about marriage, three were from a different country, and zero demonstrated an instance of actual “defamation.”

Equality Matters documented all Marriage ADA stories and regarding Goddard, it said the following:

 . . . the decision to fire Goddard was made long before his tweet. Goddard himself admitted that it was “absolutely” possible that his tweet had nothing to do with his termination. Moreover, Goddard’s entire ordeal took place in Canada, which has significantly tougher standards against anti-gay speech than the U.S.

And that's the truth of the matter, not that NOM cares. The organization has never let truth get in the way of a good story.

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