Dozens of Big Businesses Back Gavin Grimm

First, please allow me to apologize for not posting more as of late. I know a lot is going on with the new regime in position, but at times it is overwhelming to me and I tend to want to just shut down mentally.

Second, this story has brought to life a legal term I’ve heard before, but don’t know much about: amicus brief. This is the definition of an amicus brief, for anyone unfamiliar with the term as I was:

An amicus brief is a document that is filed in a court by someone who is not directly related to the case under consideration. The most classic example is a document filed by an advocacy group, such as the American Civil Liberties Union. The additional information found in such a document can be useful for the judge evaluating the case, and it becomes part of the official case record. Many nations allow people or entities to file such documents with their courts.

The tradition of accepting amicus briefs comes from a larger concept, the amicus curiae, or “friend of the court.” A friend of the court may be interested in a case for various reasons, although he or she is not directly involved. For example, a court might be preparing to try a case related to online file sharing, an issue of great concern to many people. A brief might be filed to discuss the larger ramifications of potential case outcomes, since these ramifications might not be brought up by the prosecution or defense during the course of a trial.

I think it’s remarkable that 53 major companies have put their name to a single brief involving one young man’s struggle, but with huge impact on all who struggle as he does.

Dozens of companies have signed up to back a transgender teenager who is taking his case to use the bathroom matching his gender identity to the Supreme Court.

A coalition of 53 companies on Thursday wrote an amicus brief to the Supreme Court supporting the Virginia student.

I think, however, that this brief will be directed toward the lower courts as I heard yesterday that the Supreme Court declined to hear argument so the case reverts to the lower courts.

Full story

Source of definition

signature

Stories Behind Transgender Laws

The struggle for rights is ever-present no matter if you’re L, G, B or T. I think the struggle for transgender individuals is harder, in some respects, because their issues are more complicated. People just aren’t ready or willing to accept that others may have been born the wrong sex; that their god or Mother Nature can screw up sometimes. Hell, as we’ve seen this election cycle, there’s a lot of hate that exists beyond the LGBT community.

As soon as Friday, the justices of the Supreme Court could decide if they will hear the appeal in a critical case about whether Gavin Grimm, a transgender male student, can be barred in his Virginia school district from using the boys’ restroom.

The justices first considered whether to take the case on Oct. 14, but took no action, leaving LGBT advocates — and Grimm — in waiting.

The case in question concerns Gloucester County School Board, an Education Department policy, and the widely covered issue of transgender people and bathrooms. But the underlying question of whether existing law — specifically, sex-discrimination bans — protects against gender identity-based discrimination has been moving forward in the courts and administrative agencies for years now.

As the election season clock ticks down to election day, the legal fight over transgender protections is reaching a crescendo. During the Obama administration, officials have undertaken a revolutionary application of those existing laws to affirm the rights of transgender individuals, spurring a rapid shift within the federal government as the culture, too, changes. Meanwhile, as the petition pends before the Supreme Court, there were three federal district court actions on transgender rights this past week alone — one of which led the Justice Department on Thursday afternoon to announce that it will be taking the matter to a federal appeals court.

Full story

signature

Ky County Clerk Names Could Be Removed From Marriage Licenses

Who cares if he has the authority? Let him make the change so that idiot woman and all of her worshippers can feel better about themselves. Anything to shut the bitch up – and anyone else like her.

Just weeks after winning his election, Kentucky Republican Gov. Matt Bevin fulfilled a campaign promise on Tuesday to accommodate county clerks who hold a religious objection to same-sex couples marrying — a cause elevated to national attention by Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis.

But critics said Bevin has overstepped his authority as governor.

At the heart of the dispute is Davis, who was sued in federal court for refusing to issue marriage licenses after the Supreme Court’s ruling for marriage equality. Davis contended that issuing licenses to same-sex couples violated her religious freedom, because Kentucky state law mandates that the name of elected county clerks appear on the licenses — which Davis argued was a form of endorsement of those marriages.

Full story

signature

KY Clerk Says She ‘Prayed And Fasted’ Before Deciding To Stop Issuing Marriage Licenses

I’d say it’s about time for Miss Davis to retire if she’s unable to follow the law – for any reason. Why should these couples be inconvenienced by her religion? If she resigns and leaves it to her deputies as she said, why is there an assumption that they would have just as big an issue with it as she does?

A Kentucky county clerk says she “prayed and fasted” before ultimately deciding to stop issuing marriage licenses altogether in the wake of the Supreme Court’s legalization of same-sex marriage.

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis is facing a federal class action lawsuit brought against her by two gay couples and two straight couples after she refused to issue them marriage licenses, The Louisville Courier-Journal reports. Davis, who is reportedly a Apostolic Christian and attends church three times a week, testified July 20 in a Covington, Kentucky courtroom that she “sought God” as she contemplated her options for months ahead of the Supreme Court’s June 26 ruling on marriage equality.

“It was something I had prayed and fasted over,” she said, according to The Lexington Herald-Leader. “It wasn’t a spur of the moment decision.” Issuing licenses under her name, she added, would violate her religious beliefs, even if a deputy clerk were to do so in her stead. “If I say they are authorized, I’m saying I agree with it, and I can’t.”

Full story

signature

Jim Obergefell Is First In Line

This waiting is agony for many of us, but few more so than Mr Obergefell. I hope we all win in this.

WASHINGTON — It was two years ago this week, when the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, that Jim Obergefell and John Arthur decided they were going to get married.

Now, Obergefell is at the Supreme Court — awaiting the outcome of his case, Obergefell v. Hodges, which is the lead case in the marriage cases that the justices heard arguments in earlier this year.

Obergefell and Arthur — who was suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) when they married — sued the state of Ohio to recognize their marriage on Arthur’s death certificate. In October 2013, Arthur did die — but Obergefell has kept going with the case, taking it all the way to the Supreme Court.

Full story

signature

Pastor Willing to Set Himself on Fire if SCOTUS Legalizes Gay Marriage

Now this loon is the poster boy for Extreme Christianity. Please tell me exactly where in the bible it says you must cause yourself bodily harm when you disagree with someone. This is so ridiculous that it borders on the absurd.

Perhaps putting too fine a point on the “fire” part of “fire and brimstone,” former Houston-area pastor Rick Scarborough has promised to self-immolate should the Supreme Court rule in favor of gay marriage.

Full story

signature

No Matter What the Supreme Court Decides, the Fight for LGBT Equality Isn’t Over

In a day and age when racial equality is still a hot button issue, I don’t think any of us truly believe that we can just sit back and relax and say, “Well done!” if the Supreme Court Rules in our favor. As long as the Ultra Conservative Right has the loudest voice in this country, we will never be done.

Tremendous strides have been made over the last decade when it comes to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights. Same-sex couples can now marry in 37 states; a landmark federal case in California ordered the state to pay for a transgender inmate’s gender reassignment surgery; and President Obama issued an executive order barring companies that contract with the federal government from discriminating against LGBT workers.

So, Why Should You Care? Before the week is over, the Supreme Court will issue its decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, the lawsuit that will determine whether same-sex couples have a fundamental federal right to marriage. As we await what many predict will be a win for same-sex marriage advocates, it’s worth considering the work that remains ahead in achieving equality for LGBT Americans. While a positive ruling for same-sex marriage would be a huge step forward, it’s important to look past the altar at the other ways LGBT people still endure disparate treatment

Full story

signature

Supreme Court Decision On Marriage Equality ‘Just The Beginning’

“Our fight for LGBT equality is not nearly over,” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) stated emphatically in an interview with me last week on SiriusXM Progress. “And I’m hopeful, very hopeful, that the Supreme Court will say it’s unconstitutional to ban gay marriage. But that’s really just the beginning of fighting for our rights. We have to actually make sure all LGBT couples can have full parenting rights, have full social security and other federal benefit rights. We want to make sure companies can’t discriminate against members of the community because of who they love and who they are. And it’s really important [to take on] discrimination wherever it exists.”

Full story

signature