Prop 8 Ruling: Now What?

You’ve probably heard about the decision by the Ninth Circuit invalidating Proposition 8. But if you’re hungry for more information, I want to simplify your search a bit.

I’ve read a lot of articles today about the decision, and I think Phil Reese of the Washington Blade has the best broad, yet in-depth analysis. And he does it without getting too wonky.  Excerpt:

Official "Vote NO on Prop 8" logo

Image via Wikipedia

In a two-to-one decision, a panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional in a federal case challenging California’s marriage ban.

The opinion, authored by Judge Stephen Reinhardt, affirms Judge Vaughn Walker’s 2010 ruling that the law passed by California voters at the ballot violates the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution because it “serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California, and to officially reclassify their relationships and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples.”

The court also rejected the argument that Judge Walker should have recused himself from the case because of his sexual orientation and relationship status.

Legal experts began to weigh in on the meaning of the decision immediately.

“I think the biggest story is how narrow [the majority decision] really is,” Douglas NeJaime, associate professor at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, told the Blade Tuesday. “Which in some ways I think that might disappoint some folks who were hoping it would expand to more states, but I think in terms of setting it up for a Supreme Court review — either the Supreme Court not taking it, or approving it — for supporters of same-sex marriage, this is actually the most strategically sound way for the case to proceed.”

Legal experts agree that the decision represents a big win for same-sex couples in California, even though it was a narrow decision limited to California. The Ninth Circuit encompasses multiple Western states and some Prop 8 opponents had hoped the court’s decision would impact a wider swath of the country.

He also goes in to the likely next steps, which I find an excellent resource for those of us who wonder what kind of impact this will have across the country.

Read the full article here.

Same Sex Sunday 5/22/11

In this special interview only episode, Phil Reese, Joe Mirabella, and D Gregory Smith interviewed some outstanding leaders in the gay community.

Joe Mirabella interviewed Terrence Meck, the Executive Director of Palette Fund, an outstanding organizing that grants hundreds of thousands of dollars to deserving LGBT organizations. Learn what the Palette Fund looks for in non-profits and what inspired Terrence to found the organizing.

Phil Reese interviewed Eric Ross the author of the outstanding child’s book “My Uncle’s Wedding“. This book is perfect for younger audiences discovering same gender marriage for the first time.

We finished the episode with an impressive young man, 16 year Caleb Laieski. Caleb is confronting his school in Arizona for their lack of response to the bullying he suffered for his sexual orientation. Don’t miss my conversation with Caleb. It will inspire you.

Same Sex Sunday, 5/1/11

Our newspapers and magazines love making lists and ranking famous people.  We see it every day: from Cosmo to USA Today, lists are it.  One list made a surprising uproar in the LGBT community recently.  Out Magazine’s Power 50 generated a lot of criticism for its clear lack of diversity.  There were few people of color on the list–only two people of Latino heritage–and absolutely no African Americans or trans people.  Is this a comment on Out Magazine, or a comment on our larger society as a whole?

This week we sit down with Out Magazine’s Editor in Chief, Aaron Hicklin, to discuss the list, the backlash, and what this could tell us about opportunities for people of color and trans people in our society as a whole.  We also ask Aaron if there is a way to be more inclusive without destroying the spirit of the list–find out what he says.

Listen here.

Same Sex Sunday 4/24/11

by Phil Reese

Though there will be fresh interviews every week, the SameSexSunday round table will be going on a brief hiatus until Pride Month, so Joe and I sought to make this week’s expert panel one of our best. We invited a crew of past all-stars that I think you’ll love.

Luckily, we have a brilliant crew with us, because there are some really important stories we need to dive into. This week, join us as we discuss the brutal apparently anti-transgender beating in a Maryland McDonald’s and a discussion of whether or not publicizing this video is helpful. We also dissect theTennessee Senate’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill attempting to silence public school employees from discussing “homosexuality” and all things adjacent in Tennessee’s K-12 schools. Finally, we also go full-force at the House Republicans’ incredibly expensive defense of DOMA: the legal landscape, the law firm behind the move, and what some activists want to do to send a message to opponents of equality.

We also get an update on the Chick-Fil-A anti-gay charity fiasco: is one university about to say goodbye to the chain because of their anti-gay giving?

Listen here!

Same Sex Sunday 4/17/11

This week, I interviewed former NOM staffer, Louis Marinelli about his realization that his work to stop marriage equality for gays and lesbian was wrong. Great guy- very easy to talk with. He had a lot of great things to say- you should hear them.

Then the round table discussed Friday’s so called “defending marriage” hearing in the United State House, where NOM’s Maggie Gallagher testified. As Jeremy Hooper from Good As You pointed out on this show, Maggie was on her best behavior. She did not show her true self to the House.

Joseph Erbentraut from the Windy City Times, shared some strange developments in Illinois where democrats tried to make it harder for LGBT people to be parents.

Our entire round table, including Cathy Renna from Renna Communications andThinkProgress.org ‘s Zack Ford, discussed the introduction of the both the Employee Non Discrimination Act (ENDA) and Uniting American Family Act (UAFA) into Congress. How likely is it that we will see any movement on these bills this year?

That and more on this week’s SameSexSunday! Listen here. (And I’ve installed a permanent link to the podcast on the right column- right under my bio, so you can check back anytime.) But, just so you don’t miss a gosh-darned thing, subscribe on iTunes.

Or download this episode (right click and save)

Same Sex Sunday, 3/27/11


#SSS: An immigration slam dunk: has the game officially changed?

President Obama has had his critics from within the LGBTQ community, but will he go down as the hero of same-sex binational American couples? We’ve already discussed the Justice Department’s decision to no longer defend the Constitutionality of the so-called ‘Defense of Marriage Acts’ in the courts, but this week one of America’s top immigration attorneys for same-sex couples won a delay in a deportation case that may have far reaching effects for a long time to come.

Lavi Soloway returns to the interview chair this week to discuss his legally married clients Monica Alcota and Cristina Ojeda; their win in immigration court, and why the prosecutor and the judge both agreed with Soloway over the need for delay in light of new DOMA developments.

However, that’s not all. Two immigration districts have put all cases on hold involving legally married same-sex binational couples. Are we about to see a total halt to the break-up of binational families based on DOMA’s discrimination?

We’ll takle this on our round table as well as get the skinny on state-wide developments, strategies on ENDA, and a whole lot more. Find out the who and the what and give it a listen after the jump.

Once again, our brilliant round table breaks down the news of the week:

  • Relationship recognition news from Colorado to Rhode Island, and discrimination in Indiana
  • The reintroduction of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and how we can use a Republican-controlled House of Representatives to build for victory
  • The President’s promise to create an LGBTQ watchdog at the Organization of American States with his Brazilian counterpart
  • Polls and reports on the Americans and their gays, and the DOJ finds the New Orleans Police Department been harassing residents based on their gender identity and sexual orientation–what does it mean that the FBI and DOJ have come to our aid?
  • And, the first Republican to file with the FEC to run for president is… gay?

Joining us this week are:

  • Executive Directors of Catholics for Equality, Phil Attey
  • Senior Political Writer at MetroWeekly in DC Chris Geidner
  • Co-Founder Swish Sue Sena and
  • State Legislative Director at the Human Rights Campaign, Sarah Warbelow

If you’re not subscribed in iTunes yet, you can do so super-quick and super-easily athttp://ituenes.samesexsunday.org/. We’re also on Facebook and on Twitter: @SameSexSunday. ‘Like’ and ‘Follow!’

Email us at info@samesexsunday.org and tell us what you think about the show and about what you’d like to see more of. Join us next week when Joe will be on his own!


LGBT Youth, Immigration Equality Reform & Montana Queer Politics

This week Joe and Phil are at the Haas Jr. Foundation LGBT writer, journalist and blogger summit in San Francisco California, however they wanted to share a few special interviews this week while they’re away.

This weekend Joe and Phil will be speaking with leaders around the nation about LGBT youth and family issues–and our interviews will help accent some of these conversations. First Phil speaks with Kelly Huegel, the author of GLBTQ: The Survival Guide for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Teens–just now releasing its second edition–about the challenges faced by LGBT youth in schools, as well as the victories achieved by young queer kids. Then I interview Michael Contorno about the struggle of LGBT youth in coming out, and his inspirational moment meeting his hero, Greg Louganis on the Oprah show.

We also have two extended interviews. First Noemi Masliah and Lavi Soloway–founders of Immigration Equality and top immigration lawyers for same-sex binational couples–talk about their new project: Stop the Deportations–the DOMA Project. Finally, I’m back with Jamee Greer, lobbyist and community organizer for the Montana Human Rights Network, and Mike Wessler, Research Director for the Montana Democratic Party about rural politics, anti-discrimination, LGBT rights, equality and the importance of Montana in the national political landscape.

Listen here. It’s good stuff.