11.27.19 Tampa Bay Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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My husband and I recently marked three years of marriage, which is as strange to type as it was to celebrate. Not because I didn’t think we’d make it, I looked forward to our decades to come long before our wedding day, but because I’ve lost my perception of time.

A number of factors have contributed to my inability to understand the calendar year, Tampa Bay Bureau Chief among them operating in Watermark’s two-week press cycle, but I mostly attribute it to living in Florida. Even though I moved here more than a decade ago, I have yet to adjust to the lack of proper seasons; time flies when you’re having sun.

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Central Florida newscaster Jorge Estevez announces departure from Orlando

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Award-winning Central Florida newscaster Jorge Estevez announced on Facebook Nov. 26 that he would be leaving his position at WFTV Channel 9 next month for Atlanta’s WSB-TV.

“Yes, I am leaving #Orlando,” Estevez wrote. “This time an opportunity presented itself that was beyond incredible. I am going to get to work with seasoned journalists who have dedicated years of their careers to providing people with the stories of their communities.”

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Northern Ireland marriage equality law takes effect

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A law that extends marriage rights to same-sex couples in Northern Ireland took effect on Tuesday.

Northern Ireland’s Stormont Parliament has not met since the country’s coalition government collapsed in 2017. The British Parliament in July voted to force Northern Ireland to allow gays and lesbians to tie the knot and to decriminalize abortion.

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Costa Rica campaign seeks to bolster marriage equality support

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Photo courtesy of Gia Miranda/Sí, Acepto.

More than 30 groups have joined a campaign designed to increase support for marriage rights for same-sex couples in Costa Rica.

Sí, Acepto (“Yes I accept” in Spanish) formally launched in August and includes ads that feature LGBTI Costa Ricans’ relatives, friends and teammates. The campaign also includes workshops on the issue that will take place across the country.

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San Salvador mayor talks marriage equality in El Salvador during DC trip

By : Ernesto Valle OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Ernesto Muyshondt, photo via Facebook.

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador | The mayor of El Salvador’s capital talked about marriage equality in his country during a visit to D.C. earlier this month.

El Tiempo Latino, a Spanish-language newspaper in D.C., asked Ernesto Muyshondt about the issue during an Oct. 2 interview.

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Gay man in Rwanda notes ‘intense pressure’ after coming out

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Albert Nabonibo. Screenshot via YouTube.

KIGALI, Rwanda (AP) | A Rwandan gospel singer who recently came out as gay says he has quit his day job as an accountant after “intense pressure” from colleagues.

Albert Nabonibo says he felt alienated and no longer a part of the beverages company that employed him in the capital, Kigali.

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Biden says he gets ‘more credit for marriage equality than I deserve’

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Former Vice President Joe Biden, photo via Biden’s Facebook page.

Democratic presidential candidate Joseph Biden told an LGBT audience Saturday night he gets “more credit for marriage equality than I deserve,” according to a campaign pool report.

Biden made the comments after reflecting on his words in favor of same-sex marriage on “Meet the Press” in 2012, which preceded the conclusion of President Obama’s in favor of same-sex marriage and wins for marriage equality at the ballot box that year.

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Mormon leader reaffirms church’s opposition to gay marriage

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Russell M. Nelson speaks in Orlando June 9. Photo via Nelson’s Facebook page.

PROVO, Utah (AP) | The leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reaffirmed the religion’s opposition to gay marriage Sept. 17, while explaining that leaders lifted a short-lived ban on baptisms for children of gay parents because they felt the “heartache” it caused.

Church president Russell M. Nelson’s remarks in a speech to students at the church-owned Brigham Young University were the most detailed explanation to date of the faith’s surprising move in April to repeal 2015 policies that banned the baptisms and labeled people in same-sex marriages as sinners eligible for expulsion.

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More than 6000 attend first-ever Bermuda Pride parade

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: More than 6,000 people attended Bermuda’s first Pride parade that took place on Aug. 31, 2019. (Photo courtesy of Linda Bogle-Mienzer)

More than 6,000 people attended Bermuda’s first-ever Pride parade that took place in the British island territory’s capital of Hamilton on Aug. 31.

Activists from Barbados, Jamaica and other English-speaking countries in the Caribbean are among those who traveled to Bermuda for the parade and other Pride-related events. Clarien Bank, which is based in Bermuda, ahead of Pride announced a $10,000 donation to OUTBermuda, a local LGBTI advocacy group.

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Virginia Republicans deny censure of GOP rep. who wed 2 men

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Congressman Denver Riggleman, photo via Facebook.

BOONES MILL, Va. (AP) | A group of Republicans tried but failed to censure a GOP congressman for failing to uphold the party’s values by officiating a gay couple’s wedding.

The Roanoke Times reports the 5th Congressional District Republican Committee held a closed session Saturday to discuss reprimanding Rep. Denver Riggleman.

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Ecuador becomes latest country to allow same-sex marriage

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Ecuador’s presidential palace in the country’s capital of Quito, Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers.

Ecuador last week became the latest country in which same-sex couples can legally marry.

Media reports indicate Alexandra Chávez and Mishelle Avilés on July 18 became the first same-sex couple to legally marry in the country when they exchanged vows in the city of Guayaquil.

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Hong Kong court: Denying same-sex spousal benefits unlawful

By : wire report
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HONG KONG (AP) | Hong Kong’s Court of Final Appeal said June 6 the government cannot deny spousal employment benefits to same-sex couples, in a ruling hailed as a major step forward for same-sex equality in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.

The court overturned an earlier judgment, saying unanimously that denying same-sex couples access to spousal benefits is unlawful.

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