Showing posts with label Marriage Equality. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marriage Equality. Show all posts

Friday, October 24, 2014

Melissa Etheridge on Gay Marriage, Obama, Marijuana & Her New Self-Released Album

Music icon Melissa Etheridge sits down with Larry King on the Emmy nominated series “Larry King Now” to talk about the ‘panic’ in her industry, Obama's job performance, legalizing marijuana and her new self-released album.

The Oscar winner also talked about why 'coming out' in 2014 isn't always an easy decision, “It’s still very ingrained into our society that men and women is correct.” 

And Melissa discussed why the country has come around so fast on the issue of gay marriage and rates the president’s slow action on gay marriage rights, “It can’t be easy to be President, it can’t be easy… but as a President I think he’s doing ok...Politics is just about this side and that side and where you’re going to land and you got to wait till public opinion gets up there.” 

As a cancer survivor, Melissa Etheridge explained how medical marijuana got her through it and why cannabis should be legal across the board, “I think it could help our society incredibly.”

The episode is now LIVE on and

Monday, October 20, 2014

Las Vegas Celebrates First Legal Same-Sex Wedding Performed at Flamingo Las Vegas

Caesars Entertainment Properties in Las Vegas celebrated the first legal same-sex wedding at the beautiful Garden Chapel of the Flamingo Las Vegas on Saturday, October 11.  

Grooms Atrau Stoller and Raymond Huntington of Washington State had originally planned their union as a destination commitment ceremony and when they learned of the change in Nevada law they filed for a wedding license and exchanged legal vows of marriage. Exchanging vows in the beautiful gardens of Flamingo Las Vegas, the newly married couple and wedding guests made their way to the High Roller Observation Wheel where they celebrated with a champagne toast at 550-feet above the Las Vegas Strip.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Getting Married? Check Out Alison Rose Photography

Alison Rose Photography has a message for Denver's gay community!

"Hi!  I'm Alison, and I'm here to help you relax in front of the camera so that every photo at your wedding or civil union is genuine and real. 

What sets me apart from other photographers is that I have a bright sense of humor and sentimental nature, which allows me to truly connect with you on a deeper level and feel the emotion of the day right alongside you. Sometimes I'm as emotional as you on your big day!  Because of this, you are able to relax and simply have fun when I'm taking pictures, which results in authentic shots that never appear fake or forced.  Plus, we have endless fun in the process!"

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Why Marriage Matters Colorado: "Don't Let AG Suthers Get Away With This!"

From Wendy Howell, Director, Why Marriage Matters Colorado:

Attorney General John Suthers filed an appeal asking the Colorado Supreme Court to reverse last week’s decision striking down Colorado’s marriage ban and to stop county clerks from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

There’s no denying it: Attorney General Suthers is firmly on the wrong side of history—and his appeal flies in the face of the supermajority of Coloradans who believe now is the time for the freedom to marry.

So, on Thursday at noon, we’re delivering thousands of petition signatures—including yours—to let Attorney General Suthers know that Coloradans won’t stand by silently as he attacks loving couples and their families.

Join us at the Attorney General’s office on Thursday at noon as we deliver petition signatures from Coloradans across the state. Click here to let us know that you’ll be there.

When we asked you to take action, Coloradans like you spoke out in the thousands, signing our petition to Attorney General Suthers to do the right thing and allow the ruling to stand.

And when we deliver your petition signatures on Thursday, we’ll show the Attorney General and the state just how strong our movement is to win marriage equality in Colorado.

Take a stand for marriage equality on Thursday at noon as we deliver thousands of petitions from Coloradans urging Attorney General Suthers to drop his appeal of Colorado’s marriage ruling. Click here to RSVP.

One Colorado: Now the Attorney General has gone too far

From Dave Montez, Executive Director, One Colorado:

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers has proven he'd stoop pretty low to prevent gay and lesbian couples from having the same freedom as everyone else. But now he has gone WAY too far.

Yesterday, AG Suthers took the incredibly disappointing -- and backwards -- step of appealing the recent state court ruling that struck down Colorado's discriminatory marriage ban. He could have simply let this ruling stand and stopped standing in the way of marriage for same-sex couples. But instead, he chose to waste taxpayer dollars on an appeal which he acknowledges is likely to fail.

This is now a one-man crusade against full equality for our families, and it has got to stop. Will you help us elect a pro-equality Attorney General this November by chipping in $15, $35 or $50 right now?

Apparently it wasn't enough for AG Suthers to insult our families by saying that "marriage is an institution for opposite-sex couples to promote child rearing." Now, with marriage licenses being issued to same-sex couples in counties across our state, he's still refusing to move on.

It's time to send a clear message to the Attorney General: you messed with our families, and we will not forget. Can you take a moment to donate whatever you can afford by clicking here?

Today, I am angered and hurt by AG Suthers' refusal to lead on behalf of ALL Colorado families. We deserve far better. But I'm focused on channeling this energy into securing the freedom to marry once and for all -- and I hope you'll join me.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Judge strikes down Colo.'s marriage equality ban

Adams County District Court Judge C. Scott Crabtree on Wednesday struck down Colorado's marriage equality ban, determining that the ban violates the constitutional right of equal protection. Crabtree immediately stayed his ruling, meaning LGBT couples will not yet be able to marry in the Centennial State. 

"The final chapter of this debate will undoubtedly have to be written either in Denver, Colorado or Washington, D.C.," Crabtree wrote in his ruling. "While the striking down of laws banning same-sex marriages has been progressing at a rapid rate, it will take time for this issue to be finally resolved."

Thursday, July 3, 2014

One Colorado: Good & Bad News for Marriage Equality In Colorado

From Dave Montez, Executive Director, One Colorado:

I have good news and I have bad news:

First the good news: Today, Governor John Hickenlooper and the Denver County Clerk called for the end of Colorado’s marriage ban. And not just that—Republican Attorney General John Suthers acknowledged it won’t be long until a court finds that the ban is unconstitutional.

But the bad news? These elected officials asked the courts to issue a stay in any decision striking down Colorado’s marriage ban—meaning even with a favorable ruling, same-sex couples in Colorado will still be denied the freedom to marry while higher courts debate the issue.

Though we’re pleased the Gov. & AG are in agreement that the marriage ban’s days are numbered, we're disappointed in this half measure. Acknowledging the unconstitutionality of the ban won’t end discrimination against same-sex couples.

There’s only one way to end the sting of Colorado’s marriage ban—and that’s to overturn it and allow all loving couples to share in the freedom to marry, without delay.

Share our graphic now to tell Gov. Hickenlooper & AG Suthers: Colorado families can’t wait another day for marriage equality. Colorado’s leaders should put the full weight of their offices behind a swift resolution striking down a law they both agree to be unconstitutional:

In recognizing that Colorado’s marriage ban cannot survive a legal challenge, both the Governor and Attorney General acknowledge what 23 courts nationwide have already affirmed: there is simply no constitutional basis for denying marriage to loving same-sex couples.

But that fact doesn’t change harsh reality for tens of thousands of Colorado families who, so long as our marriage ban is on the books, will continue to suffer the consequences every single day.

Until same-sex couples are afforded equal protection under the law, Colorado’s laws will continue to harm the families who call our state home.

Share this graphic now and help demonstrate that the people of Colorado want our marriage ban to be overturned once and for all—now. Click here to say that Colorado simply can’t wait any longer for the freedom to marry.

We’re thrilled to see this bipartisan group of elected officials coming together to recognize that Colorado’s marriage ban is unconstitutional. Now, it’s time for them to take the next step and ensure that every Colorado family is afforded the freedom and protections we all deserve.

Proposition 8 Plaintiffs Tie the Knot In Lavish Beverly Hills Ceremony On The Anniversary Of The Historic Ruling

2008 was a life-changing year for Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo. It was the year that the couple decided they wanted to get married, and it was also the year that California voters passed Proposition 8, banning marriage for same-sex couples. But rather than spend a year or two picking centerpieces and creating a registry, Jeff and Paul spent the next five years making their way from Federal District Court in California to the U.S. Supreme Court, as lawyers Theodore B. Olson and David Boies argued for marriage equality for all couples. And on June 28th, 2013, Proposition 8 was declared unconstitutional. Mere hours later, Paul and Jeff were married in a legal ceremony by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. "The only thing missing that day was our family," Jeff exclusively tells Brides. So a few months later, he and Paul decided that they needed to celebrate the momentous decision — and their love for one another — in the most deserving of ways: with a wedding!

On Saturday June 28th, 2014, exactly a year after Proposition 8 was overturned and they were legally wed, Paul and Jeff tied the knot at the Beverly Hilton, hosting a private dinner for 150 friends and family members in the hotel's Stardust Penthouse, decorated by Stacey Ruiz and Jason Harder of Shiraz Events and Luna Gardens Events. "We told them what we like, and they ran with it," say the grooms. "It was more than we could possibly have dreamed."

After dinner, the couple and their guests headed downstairs to meet 80 additional revelers, and Paul and Jeff exchanged personal vows on a platform over the pool in a ceremony officiated by Olson and Boies. They spun straight into a dance with their moms, sliced their five-tiered cake byJoanie & Leigh's Cakes, then partied the night away with their guests, sipping Mo√ęt & Chandon and squeezing in some time in the photo booth. Our Labor of Love got it all on film.

The day went off without a hitch, thanks to the incredible team that made it happen. "It's a memory we'll never forget," says Paul, "because we never ever dreamed it would be possible." Adds Jeff, "Being in the LGBT community, you cope with the idea that you may never have access to certain things. And when you get them, it's overwhelming. And the support we got from everyone on such a personal level made the celebration even more memorable." And their guests felt it, too. "One of our friends came up to us and said that the love was reverberating so strongly that they'd be feeling it for days," says Jeff. "We soaked it in, and I know we'll be feeling it for a long time to come."

Click through the slideshow to see exclusive photos from the couple's absolutely stunning celebration!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Gallup Poll: Marriage equality support at record high

Americans are more supportive of marriage equality than ever before, according to a survey released by Gallup on last week. Fifty-five percent of Americans now say they believe same-sex marriages should be recognized as legally valid, while 42% are opposed to same-sex marriage recognition. Support for marriage equality has roughly doubled since 1996, according to Gallup.

Friday, May 16, 2014

May 17: 10-Year Anniversary of Marriage for Gay Couples in America

Ten years ago tomorrow, Massachusetts became the first state in America where same-sex couples could marry. Since then, 16 other states and Washington, DC have followed, resulting in 40% of Americans who now live in a state with the freedom to marry. Polling shows a near supermajority of Americans support marriage for gay couples.

Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, is a leading strategist and veteran of the marriage movement who can speak to the Massachusetts win, progress over the past 10 years, and the current landscape on marriage. Wolfson has been called “the godfather of gay marriage” by The Daily Beast and one of the "100 most influential people in the world" by TIME Magazine.

Same-sex couples began marrying in Massachusetts on May 17, 2004 following the landmark Goodridge v. Department of Public Health case. The first day of marriages also marked the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education – “civil rights karma,” Wolfson hailed it at the time.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Sign Mark Udall's Marriage Equality Petition

From the office of Mark Udall:

Have you signed on to support marriage equality in Colorado yet? Ten couples have led the fight here in Colorado. I've joined their fight, and I'm asking you to do the same.

Whether you're straight or gay, individuals want to marry who they love for the same reasons — to make lifetime commitments to love and care for each other and their families. Our laws should not discriminate against any couple that wishes to make those commitments, regardless of whom they love.

As we fight for justice, my opponent Congressman Cory Gardner has consistently opposed equality in Washington. After I led Congress in repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in 2010, Congressman Gardner opposed overturning this backwards policy.

Congressman Gardner is on the wrong side of history. Please send him a message by standing up for marriage equality.

Every gay couple ought to be entitled to the same legal and economic protections as straight couples. I believe Coloradans — all Coloradans — have the right to marry the person they love.

Will you stand up for marriage equality? Click here to sign our petition to support full marriage equality in Colorado.

Thanks for your support,

Mark Udall

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Gay Marriage Plaintiffs Speak OUT to Colorado Public Radio

One of the nine LGBT couples challenging Colorado's gay marriage ban recently spoke to Colorado Public Radio. 

Click here to hear what they had to say.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Support for Marriage Equality (and Other Gay Rights) Continues to Grow in Colorado

By John Tomasic

Efforts to expand gay rights in Colorado continue to gain momentum — at the legislature, in the courts and at the ballot box.

Last year, a bill granting civil unions for same-sex couples became law. Governor John Hickenlooper this year already has signed a bill that allows same-sex couples married in the eyes of the federal government to file joint state tax returns in Colorado. There are two lawsuits currently wending their way through the courts challenging the state’s 2006 ban on gay marriage. And poll numbers show steady, fast-growing support among voters for full equality for gay residents of the state.

Why Marriage Matters, a grassroots effort launched at the beginning of March, hopes to tap into and boost that momentum. The campaign is spearheaded by gay-rights groups One Colorado and Freedom to Marry and by the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. It’s organizing gay couples and their supporters around the state to explain how marriage would make a difference in their everyday family life — on matters such as taxes, hospital visits and child care.

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers Explains Why He Will Defend Gay Marriage Ban

In an article in The Denver Post on Saturday, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers (pictured) explains his reasons for defending our state's gay marriage ban against the nine gay couples who are suing to have the law overturned.

Friday, March 21, 2014

If There's Two Things Colorado Likes, It's Legal Marijuana and Gay Marriage

You go, Colorado!  

A recent poll finds that 57% of Coloradans support the legalization of marijuana and 56% support gay marriage.

 Meanwhile, a whopping 79% of Coloradans support at least some sort of legal recognition for same-sex couples such as civil unions. 


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Louis Trujillo for Why Marriage Matters Colorado

It may sound corny, but for Jessie and me it was love at first sight. We met one night and over a few rounds of pool we talked a lot about our lives, our families and what we wanted from our futures.

From that very first night it was clear that we wanted the same thing: a family and a future right here in Colorado.

We’re sharing our story with Why Marriage Matters Colorado because we know it’s the most important thing we can do to help move marriage forward in our state. Click here to share your story now too.

It wasn’t long before I wanted Jessie to meet my son, Israel, and just a few months after that we all moved in together. That was the start of our time together as a family, and it’s been wonderful ever since.

Then, one night, in front of both of our wonderful families, I asked Jessie to marry me. Fortunately, he said “yes!” But today we’re still waiting for the state of Colorado to say “yes” to our family.

Since that night, we’ve added our beautiful daughter, Silvia to our family, bought our first home together and continued to put down our roots in Colorado, as both our families have done for generations.

Colorado is our home, and it’s the only place we want to get married.

Join us in helping to build support for the freedom to marry in Colorado today by sharing your story with Why Marriage Matters Colorado.

Hearts and minds are changing across the state—and if we continue to tell our stories of why marriage matters, we can build the support we need to ensure that all families in Colorado will have the freedom to marry.

Thank you,
Louis Trujillo on behalf of Jessie, Israel and Silvia

Monday, March 10, 2014

Colorado Attorney General to Defend Marriage Equality Ban

Colorado's Attorney General John Suthers (pictured) says he is still obligated to defend Colorado's ban on same-sex marriage despite the fact that the country seems to be moving toward the legalization of gay marriage.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Threesome: Three Letters to the Denver Post "Debating" Marriage Equality

In response to a February 23 editorial in The Denver Post regarding marriage equality in Colorado, three letter-writers share their feelings on the subject. Spoiler: Everybody's cool except for Jay and Dianne Moyers.

Fake News Release: Marriage Equality Comes to Colorado!

News Release

From: One Colorado (Not really…)

Marriage Equality Comes to Colorado! (A Fictional Version of What-Might-Have-Been by Todd Craig)

Denver, Colorado (March 3, 2014) – Let’s face it, the last nine months since the monumental Supreme Court ruling against the federal Defense of Marriage Act or DOMA have been a whirling dervish of activity for us here at One Colorado. As soon as the ruling was handed down, we put into motion a three-pronged attack against the discrimination that existed in the constitution of Colorado.

The first part of our plan was to file a lawsuit in federal court challenging the legality of Colorado’s one-man-one-woman marriage amendment. We weren’t stuck being self-satisfied with our victory regarding civil unions, which created a separate-but-equal status. Seeing as how the Supreme Court’s ruling gave our legal team the exact battle plan as to how best challenge Colorado’s legalized discrimination, we wasted no time in having numerous Colorado couples sign up to be part of the legal challenge. Through our strong connections with the ACLU, we were able to bring our case to trial immediately with an experienced team of high-powered trial lawyers well-versed in social justice issues. Thanks to these efforts, soon thousands of LGBT couples in our state will marry, and Colorado can consider itself more colorful than ever before. Other states like Texas, Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky personally thanked our legal team and our organization for being the leader of this wave of successful challenges in courts across our nation.

While our lawyers battled injustice in the courts, our crack team of foot soldiers on the ground mobilized the second part of our plan. They scoured all of Colorado to gain signatures for a ballot measure repealing the Constitution amendment banning same-sex marriage. We knew that even though we lost an election back in 2006, that we shouldn’t be afraid to hold another election – especially considering how the world has changed in the years since. While our ballot measure is no longer needed, our networking has allowed us to connect with many gay-friendly Colorado people, businesses, and community organizations who have pledged their support to keep equality the law of the land through our highly coordinated political efforts and flexing our combined political muscle.

Finally, our vast conglomerate of financial backers and enthusiastic members has allowed us numerous opportunities to promote and elect LGBT advocates in elections across the state. We know that every school board and city council election across our great state is as important as those of our governor and senators. If our immense amount of polling data offers any hints at things to come, our efforts will help make the 2014 elections our most successful yet.

While equality has arrived here in Colorado full-force, we must continue to build and develop our resources to maintain our hard-fought victories and to help protect our rights in the years to come. Please know that we will never fall into the trap of simply being cheerleaders on the sidelines of the great equality battle by simply holding meetings, sending copious numbers of fundraising emails and surveys, organizing awards banquets, coloring poster board signs, and sharing status updates on Facebook like other states’ lesser gay lobbying groups. No, Colorado deserves only the best, and we’re proud to say that our best has sown the results of marriage equality that we’re now all enjoying.


Monday, July 15, 2013

After DOMA, Prop 8. Rulings: A Little Less Conversation; A Little More Action, Please

By Todd Craig

A few weeks have passed since the Supreme Court rulings against DOMA and Prop 8. In that time, states across the union have jumped at the opportunity to further the cause of marriage equality. Gay groups in Illinois, which has a civil unions law and a gay marriage ban, are legally challenging the second-class status such laws mandate.

In Pennsylvania, the A.C.L.U. has challenged the legality of that state’s gay marriage ban, using the Supreme Court’s rulings as the template to dismantle the discriminatory statute.

And in Colorado? Well, we’re apparently listening to the crickets chirping.

In a July 2 article published in OutFront, One Colorado director Brad Clark outlined the vision for Colorado’s main LGBT advocacy group’s path towards marriage equality: town hall meetings this fall “… aimed at discussing the path forward.”

Let me get this straight (pun intended): While other states already have lawsuits in motion fighting for marriage equality, our primary political lobbying group here in Colorado is planning meetings to discuss what to do?

Does anybody else feel let down by this?

Sure, One Colorado wants to be deliberate here. They know that we lost an election before, and they clearly don’t want to lose again. Although in retrospect, 2006 might as well have been 1956 for all of the change that has happened since, and the polls certainly would agree.

To be critical, it’s obvious that other states and their LGBT groups have already held their discussions and have decided that now is the time to act. In Colorado, I guess talking about acting is supposed to be as good as acting itself.

It’s not.

I realize that our gay marriage ban is written into the state constitution, and I get that no such ban has ever been overturned in the history of our country. It’s a big task; I get that. I really do.

But what I also realize is that the Colorado’s constitution has been changed over 150 times. From a legal standpoint, we have one of the most easily amendable constitutions in the country. On the day after the Supreme Court’s rulings, the Denver Post reported that a ballot measure to void the amendment in question could be easily held by gathering just more than 85,000 signatures statewide.

So yeah ... shouldn’t we get started on that?

I realize that elections are expensive and require man-power, money, and coordination in massive doses.

Elections may be expensive, but talk is cheap.

I realize you need to have political networks, savvy leadership, a vision for success, and the wherewithal to make it happen.

I thought that maybe we already had that in place based on the political victories extolled by One Colorado in the legislature and in last November’s elections. They certainly had no qualms celebrating the Supreme Court’s rulings by sending out a series of fundraising emails, one of which from Brad Clark featured the line: “But there’s something else we know – something that gives us incredible hope today. We know that in every corner of this state, Coloradans have shown they are ready for a conversation about why marriage matters to all couples – straight and gay alike. And in the coming weeks and months, we must come together as a community to ensure that conversation is carried out.”

Lovely prose, I suppose. But if Coloradoans are so ready to have the conversation about marriage equality to the point where we’re encouraged to donate our hard-earned dollars to the cause, why are we so not ready to have an election or to file a lawsuit? What have Pennsylvania and Illinois got, that Colorado doesn’t?

Besides quick and decisive action on the marriage equality front, that is?

Here in Colorado with nothing but talk on the horizon, we’re left to watch and wait and settle for second rate. Apparently, while other states have coordinated their efforts into action, all that we LGBT Coloradans can look forward to this fall is discussing a path forward.

Someone once said that talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand. In the more colorful parts of Colorado, talk is all we’re getting on marriage equality from our own LGBT political leadership, despite our low demand for it.

Perhaps then, when supplied something lesser, it’s time to demand better.