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Tell Michigan leaders you don't want any more harmful RFRA laws

Tell Michigan leaders you don’t want any more harmful RFRA laws

Find out why these “license to discriminate” bills are bad for Michigan, then sign a petition opposing RFRA legislation.

The ink was barely dry on the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide when Michigan Republicans began pushing for more so-called Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) legislation. In fact, their assault on equality began even before the Supreme Court decision.

The most sobering example is the fact that Governor Rick Snyder signed into law the “RFRA for Adoption” bills that allow state-funded faith-based adoption agencies to turn away anyone based on religious objections to who they are, who they love or what they believe.…

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Fellow Midland judges overrule homophobic coworker, weddings to continue in 75th District Court. ALL weddings.

Fellow Midland judges overrule homophobic coworker, weddings to continue in 75th District Court. ALL weddings.

The decision by 75th District Court judge Michael Carpenter to stop ALL marriages in the 75th District Court in Midland to avoid having to marry same-sex couples sent a shockwave of outrage and disbelief throughout the country yesterday. What he did was legal in the technical sense because District Court judges are authorized, not required to perform marriages. However, given that they have performed this service in the 75th District Court and in basically all other Michigan District Courts basically forever, it is a de facto part of his job and pulling the trigger on this decision showed the true motives of this self-described “man of faith”.…

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Can't wait to get hitched now that marriage equality is here? Don't wait to get health insurance, either

Can’t wait to get hitched now that marriage equality is here? Don’t wait to get health insurance, either

Everything LGBT people need to know about signing up for health insurance after getting married.


Last week’s historic ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court affirming marriage equality for everyone across the country means there are going to be a lot of weddings this summer. But that’s just the beginning of the good news.

Many LGBT people may not realize that once they begin their lives of legally wedded bliss, they have a special opportunity to enroll in quality, affordable health coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace.

Getting married is considered a “qualifying life event” under the Affordable Care Act. That means that newly married couples qualify for a “special enrollment period,” which lets them sign up for a new health plan or make changes to the plan they enrolled in during the last open enrollment period.…

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Michigan judge halts ALL marriages in 75th District court to avoid marrying same-sex couples (UPDATED)

Michigan judge halts ALL marriages in 75th District court to avoid marrying same-sex couples (UPDATED)

This post has been updated several times. See below.

It hasn’t been particularly surprising to see marriages being halted in places like Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas. In these states, some government officials are refusing to marry or issue marriage licenses to ANY couple, same-sex or opposite-sex, in order to avoid having to marry same-sex couples. However, this bigotry has now come to Michigan.

75th District Judge Michael Carpenter, a former county prosecutor, has ordered ALL marriages by judges in the 75th District to be halted. No reason has been given but the intent is obvious.

In the wake of last week’s landmark Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, Midland County’s 75th District Court has stopped performing marriages for all couples, regardless of their sexual orientation.
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LetsJustCallItMarriage

Take a moment to celebrate and then let’s finish the job once and for all

Last week was an incredible week for all Americans, but most especially for progressives and activists and advocates for equality and equity. We need to take time to celebrate these crucial and impactful Supreme Court decisions, all three of them.

King v. Burwell affirmed what most common sense non-elected Republicans have known from the beginning of the Affordable Care Act. Among them, that without subsidies millions of Americans would not have health care today. Semantics did not get in the way of this majority decision and I was clearly thrilled for the many who would have found themselves lost and on another horrific path to ill-care and a destruction of progress and what should clearly be a right in this country: Health Care.…

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GayDay57

“Joy” – June 26, 2015 (PHOTOS)

The following images were captured at the Braun Court Decision Day celebration in Ann Arbor on June 26, 2015. The celebrants were joined by SCOTUS marriage equality plaintiffs April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse and their Michigan legal team. It was a day of pure joy.


Jayne and April take a break from recording interviews

The poetry that concluded SCOTUS Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion:

No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death.…
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Let's just call it "marriage" now

Let’s just call it “marriage” now

Not much more to say right now except “How quick can I get off work to go celebrate with my friends?”

If you’d like to read the 5-4 decision striking down same-sex marriage bans in the USA, you can do so HERE.

Also, too, suck it Bill Schuette, Todd Courser, Gary Glenn, and Cindy Gamrat. Your bigotry and hatred lose today and forever.

Amen.

UPDATE: Oh, hell. I have a LOT more to say as I read through the decision. Here are the highlights for me…

  • There is an “abiding connection between marriage and liberty”.

    Someone go tell Todd Courser.

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How Obamacare is moving the cause of LGBT equality forward

How Obamacare is moving the cause of LGBT equality forward

The law has delivered great progress, but there’s still more work to be done.

With LGBT Pride Month still in full swing, it’s a great time to celebrate the progress made by and for the LGBT community, especially in healthcare access thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

At the same time, there’s a lot at stake this month, between the U.S. Supreme Court’s pending decisions about marriage equality and tax subsidies under Obamacare — a case that would disproportionately affect LGBT people if the subsidies are struck down.

But regardless of the outcomes, the gains made under the ACA are significant for the LGBT community, says Kellan Baker, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress (CAP) and a steering committee member for Out2Enroll, a national initiative to connect LGBT people with health insurance options under the ACA.…

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Courser: Same-sex & non-religious couples can have common law marriages (not recognized by the State of Michigan) - UPDATED

Courser: Same-sex & non-religious couples can have common law marriages (not recognized by the State of Michigan) – UPDATED

NOTE: This post has been updated to include information about when Michigan abolished common law marriages.

Republican Todd Courser took to the internet to defend “attacks” he’s facing over his package of legislation paving the way for “RFRA for Marriage” and making it harder for same-sex couples to get married. In a piece on his website titled “Breaking Courser Answers Critics of Marriage Bill!” [sic], a piece comically full of grammatical errors and misspelled words, he claims he does not want to “impose my beliefs on such religious leaders or use my power in government to push my beliefs on those who are gay, straight, atheist or have a different belief system than I do.” This statment comes after an opening paragraph that reads like a Sunday morning sermon:

There has been lots of hype, hateful comments and emails from the LGBT community and from those who want government to rule everything.…
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TinaSeitz

ACLU lawsuit and new legislation fight for the rights of transgender Michiganders

Both the lawsuit and legislation seek to update gender markers on state identification.

Imagine having to share the deepest of personal information about yourself — information that could subject you to discrimination, violence or worse — every time you wanted to cash a check. Imagine being challenged every time you pull out your state-issued identification because you look like a woman but your driver’s license says you’re a man. Imagine fearing being turned away from a voting booth because the gender marker on your ID isn’t in line with what poll workers think you should look like.

That’s the reality faced every single day by transgender Michiganders.…

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