Watchdog group debunks bathroom myth

By : Jamie Hyman
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The bathroom myth is an argument hate groups consistently trot out whenever LGBT equality measures are up for discussion, claiming that if we allow transgender people to use preferred bathrooms, predatory men will exploit this access to assault women and children.

A bathroom bill, requiring people to use bathrooms that correspond to their gender at birth, even made it through a few committees in the Florida House before the 2015 legislative session came to a close.

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At least 22 Alabama counties will not issue same-sex marriage licenses

By : Wire Report
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Nearly one-third of Alabama counties June 29 were not issuing marriage licenses to gay couples, or had shut down marriage license operations altogether, despite the landmark U.S Supreme Court ruling that same-sex couples have a fundamental right to marry.

An Associated Press telephone survey of counties June 29 found that at least 32 of the state’s 67 counties were issuing the licenses to gay couples. However, at least 22 counties were not issuing the licenses, with many of those shutting down marriage license operations altogether as probate judges said they needed time to sort out the ruling.

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Indiana students proposed ‘Straight Pride’ club at high school

By : Wire Report
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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Educators and parents in southern Indiana are calling for more training and awareness of the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students after a high school’s failed attempt to establish a “Straight Pride” club.

A group of students at Bloomington High School North had proposed starting the faith-based club in the 2015-16 school year. Principal Jeff Henderson said federal law required the school to allow the club, which students had said would offer “specific supports for heterosexual students.”

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Judge cancels Florida divorce hearing on eve of court date

By : Staff & Wire Report
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Fort Lauderdale – On Sept. 9, Broward Circuit Judge Dale Cohen cancelled the scheduled Sept. 10 hearing on a same-sex divorce case involving two women. According to his order, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi was not properly informed to appeal the ruling.

“It has come to this court’s attention that the Petitioner, Heather Brassner, has failed to comply with Florida Statute 86.091 and Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.071 by failing to notice the Office of the Attorney General of these proceedings by either registered or certified mail,” the order read.

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Court of Appeal tells Bondi marriage cases must move forward

By : Staff Report
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Tallahassee – Pam Bondi can’t avoid the marriage equality debate any longer. That’s according to a decision released by the Third District Court of Appeal Aug. 28.

“Upon consideration, appellant’s motions to stay briefing are denied,” wrote the Third District Court of Appeal in a terse ruling.

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Palm Beach County judge strikes down same-sex marriage ban

By : Jamie Hyman
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Palm Beach County – Another Florida judge has ruled Florida’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of W. Jason Simpson, whose husband, Frank Bangor, died in Pennsylvania in March. They were legally married in Pennsylvania in October of 2013. Bangor’s will left his entire estate – including property in West Palm Beach – to Simpson. This means Simpson neede the ability to administer the estate in Florida, and he was petitioning for appointment as Bangor’s personal representative in Florida. On Aug. 5, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Diana Lewis ruled in favor of the couple.

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Broward judge strikes down Florida’s same-sex marriage ban

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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Lake Worth, Fla. – Broward Circuit Judge Dale Cohen is the third judge in Florida to rule the 2008 ban on same-sex marriage as unconstitutional, but this time it stems from a divorce.

Cohen’s Aug. 4 ruling both overturns the ban and requires recognition of gay couples legally married out-of-state. It applies to Broward County only.

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7.31.14 Editor’s Desk

By : Steve Blanchard
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SteveBlanchardHeadshot_137x185Embracing marriage equality isn’t always easy. After years of hearing how awful we gay people are, it’s difficult for some to embrace shifting attitudes and accept, even respect, same-sex couples.

It can be done, and without infringing upon a person’s religious or personal beliefs. Call it evolution, call it common sense. But there is a right way and a wrong way.

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Same-sex marriage case could head to Florida’s Supreme Court

By : Wire Report
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MIAMI (AP) – Attorneys for two Key West men challenging the state’s ban on same-sex marriage want the Florida Supreme Court to take up the case.

The lawyers representing the Monroe County couple filed a motion July 28 asking that the 3rd District Court of Appeal certify the case to the state’s highest court.

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Attempt to lift stay on gay marriage in Monroe County DENIED

By : Wire Report
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MIAMI (AP) – Gay couples in the Florida Keys remain unable to legally marry after a state appeals court declined to intervene in their case.

The Miami-based 3rd District Court of Appeal refused to invalidate a Monroe County judge’s decision temporarily preventing a wedding for Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones and other gay couples.

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Keys couple takes marriage equality fight to state appeals court

By : Wire Report
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Miami, FL (AP) – Attorneys for a Florida Keys gay couple have turned to a state appeals court to lift a judge’s order blocking them from getting married.

The Miami-based 3rd District Court of Appeal was asked July 23 to overturn a Monroe County judge’s decision earlier this week preventing a wedding for Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones and other gay couples.

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Keys marriage forms changed to accommodate same-sex couples

By : Wire Report
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KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) – Marriage-license forms in the Florida Keys have been changed to accommodate same-sex couples, even though a judge’s ruling that gays can marry in Monroe County has been stayed pending a state appeal.

Since Judge Luis M. Garcia ruled July 17, siding with same-sex couples in the Keys who challenged Florida’s voter-approved ban on gay marriage as discriminatory, the county clerk’s office has been inundated with calls from people making plans to fly to Key West for their weddings, said Ron Saunders, the attorney for the clerk’s office.

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