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Box Turtle BulletinNews, analysis and fact-checking of anti-gay rhetoric
“Now you must raise your children up in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife…”
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Posts for March, 2014

Marriage Equality (Partly) Arrives In Britain

Jim Burroway

March 13th, 2014

Today, registrars across England and Wales began accepting declarations of intent to marry from same-sex couples as major portions of the recently enacted same-sex marriage legislation went into effect at midnight. This means that the first weddings taking place in England and Wales will take place on March 29 following the required 15-day waiting period. There are exceptions to that waiting period:

The official guidance states: “The Registrar General can allow a marriage to take place without the normal 15-day notice period where one of the couple is seriously ill and is not expected to recover, and in other urgent cases such as where a person is due to be deployed overseas in the armed forces. Such marriages of same sex couples will be possible from Thursday, 13 March 2014.”

They won’t however been the first same-sex married couples in England and Wales. Couples who were married overseas got a head start in becoming legal spouses today as their marriages became legally recognized at the stroke of midnight.

Procedures for converting civil partnerships into marriage will be put in place later this year.

Meanwhile, Queen Elizabeth II has given her Royal Assent to Scotland’s same-sex marriage law today. Same-sex marriages in Scotland will become legal sometime later this year.

Northern Ireland remains the only corner of the United Kingdom where there has been no movement on marriage equality. This is despite more than half of residents supporting same-sex marriage, with particularly strong support among Catholics.

Brits can set the date

Timothy Kincaid

December 10th, 2013

Same-sex couples in England and Wales can plan a spring wedding: (BBC)

The first same-sex weddings can take place from 29 March 2014, Equalities Minister Maria Miller says.

Initially it was thought the first same-sex marriage in England and Wales would not take place until the summer.

Marriage goes to the Queen

Timothy Kincaid

July 16th, 2013

Jim already put up the story, but I love the fireworks pictures.

UK Lords pass marriage equality

Timothy Kincaid

July 15th, 2013

Bloomberg

The upper, unelected chamber approved the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill without a vote in London today. Some members of the house wore pink carnations to mark the occasion.

The legislation has already been passed by the Commons amid opposition from more than 100 lawmakers from Cameron’s Conservative Party. The bill will now return to the Commons, where amendments introduced by the Lords will be considered. If they’re accepted, the bill will be sent to Queen Elizabeth II for her signature before becoming law.

British Parliament votes for marriage (second reading)

Timothy Kincaid

February 5th, 2013

NPR

By an overwhelming majority, the British House of Commons passed a bill that legalizes gay marriage. The bill is expected to become law because it is supported by Prime Minister David Cameron.The House passed the bill with a vote of 400 to 175.

After a weekend of threats of revolt from conservative Tories and whining from church leaders, Parliament has soundly supported the change.

Now the bill goes to committee, a third reading, and the House of Lords.

For a recap of the drama: the Times.

“but, but, but we didn’t mean that we wanted you to BAN us from conducting gay weddings”

Timothy Kincaid

December 14th, 2012

Oh what a funny funny state the world is in.

For example, over in the UK, marriage is on the table. And the Anglican Church was wrought up about the sanctity of penis and vagina or some such thing. And how dare, how very dare the government to hint that anything other than penis and vagina could be linked in holy hoohaw.

So the government came of with the perfect solution. They would protect the Anglican Churches with a lock, no a double, scratch that, the government would protect the Anglicans with a “quadruple lock”. They would say that while other churches could opt-in and offer marriage if they so wanted, Anglican churches can’t. Even if William and Kate’s little bundle of joy grows up to be a charming young man who trots off to St. Andrews and falls in love with the Earl of Pudding.

So now they are all in a dither. You see, they didn’t want restrictions on themselves so much. They really just wanted the government to tell the Quakers and Jews what not to do. (Scotsman)

Archbishop of Wales Barry Morgan said that the move to outlaw gay marriage in the Church of England and Church in Wales came as a “total shock” when it was announced by equalities minister Maria Miller on Tuesday as part of a “quadruple lock” to protect them from legal challenge.

Dr Morgan said that his church did not want the protection, which has put it in an “enormously difficult position”.

UK rugby player comes out

Timothy Kincaid

December 18th, 2009

Gareth ThomasGareth Thomas is not just a rugby player; he’s a legend in what is probably one of the toughest, most macho of sports. He was the first Welsh player to earn 100 caps and served as captain of Wale’s team. And he’s gay.

He told BBC:

“I just happen to be gay,” he added. “It’s irrelevant.

“What I choose to do when I close the door at home has nothing to do with what I have achieved in rugby.

“It’s pretty tough for me being the only international rugby player prepared to break the taboo.

“Statistically I can’t be the only one, but I’m not aware of any other gay player still in the game.

“I’d love for it, in 10 years’ time, not to even be an issue in sport, and for people to say: ‘So what?'”

Thomas is a welcome addition to those few other sports stars that have come out. He is especially welcome in that he is still a professional player in a sport that has not been historically seen as particularly welcoming to gay athletes or fans.