BRAZIL: Sao Paulo State Legalizes Gay Marriage
Brazilian Law Blog
Brazil is about to see something that we only heard about from the United States: a massive movement of people going to one specific State, in order to get married there.
This is because São Paulo State (where São Paulo city is located) has updated its registration rules in order to allow the automatic registration of same sex marriages, without the need of a previous court order.
This change has followed, with some delay, a decision from the Brazilian Supreme Court regarding same sex marriage.
Therefore, foreigners who wish to marry same sex partners in Brazil will now be allowed a marriage visa, which is much easier to obtain than the civil union visa for same sex unions, which already existed.
I consider this a triumph of law and civility. A good thing for Brazil, at last.
The link below is in Portuguese:
Folha de S.Paulo - Cotidiano - Norma do TJ obriga cartórios de SP a registrar casamento gay - 19/12/2012
Ricky Martin Marks World AIDS Day, Talks Obama Support & Life After Coming Out
The Huffington Post reports:
His sizzling turn in Broadway’s “Evita” may earn him a nightly standing ovation, but as he enters his dressing room at New York’s Marquis Theater, Ricky Martin is the casual antithesis of the bon-bon-shaking superstar who sang about “livin’ la vida loca.”Despite his calm demeanor less than two hours before hitting the stage, Martin is now working at a pace that recalls his late 1990s heyday, and anyone concerned that the Latin crooner would regret declaring himself a “fortunate homosexual man” in 2010 would be happy to know that the risk appears to have paid off.
Though he’ll depart “Evita” in January, Martin is set to mentor a new generation of hopeful stars on the Australian version of “The Voice” early next year, and recently inked a deal with NBC to develop his own television series, which he simply describes as a “dramedy.”“If I knew how good it would feel, I would have done it a long time ago,” Martin recalls of his coming out experience. “Sometimes I’m like, ‘Can I come out again?’ because it really felt amazing…I had no idea what the reaction was going to be; I just did it because I needed to feel free and happy. It’s been beautiful.”
But Martin’s passions have always extended beyond performance art, and as the current spokesperson for Viva Glam, he’s helping to raise millions for the MAC AIDS Fund through sales of his MAC Cosmetics lip conditioner line. On the eve of World AIDS Day, Martin says he considers global prevention of HIV/AIDS a responsibility that he takes very seriously.“It’s really sad when people say, ‘Yeah, that’s an issue for gays,’ because it’s not only the gay community that’s struggling with AIDS — it’s [heterosexual] men, women and children, too,” he says. Describing his earlier philanthropic work in preventing human trafficking as being very much interconnected to HIV/AIDS awareness, he added, “For many years I did it quietly, because I had this conception people might think I was doing it for recognition, until I talked to real activists who told me, ‘Dude, you need to talk about this, because people listen.’”If the framed photograph of him with President Barack Obama that rests on his dressing room table is any indication, Martin is certainly pleased with the U.S. election results.“The re-election of our president was, for me, nothing but light,” Martin, who hosted an Obama fundraiser in May and stood beside first lady Michelle Obama at a Florida rally in November, explains. “If we went the other way, it was going to be like going back in time. As a Latino Puerto Rican U.S. citizen that can vote for the president, it was very beautiful to see minorities getting together for democracy, for freedom, for civil rights.”He then concluded, “What he’s done for the LGBT community…really is beautiful. It’s historical to have a president saying, ‘Marriage equality…let’s move this forward!”
On Dec. 1, MAC Cosmetics will mark World AIDS Day by doubling its donations to the MAC AIDS Fund by matching the sale of Viva Glam products including Ricky’s lip conditioner. For more information, click here.
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CALIFORNIA: Chikin Graffiti Artist, Manny Castro, Comes Forward
The man who spray-painted “Tastes Like Hate” on a California Chick-Fil-A franchise has voluntarily come forward and he is openly gay NYC-trained artist Manny Castro. His online bio reads:After studying at Parsons The New School for Design in New York, Castro launched his fine art career with his first solo show being the main window installations for Saks Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, and subsequently additional installations at Barney’s New York and Fred Segal. Since relocating to Los Angeles, some of Hollywood’s greatest have posed for him including Milla Jovovich, Derek Blasberg, Agnes Bruckner, Amanda Lepore, Patrick McMullan, and Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan from “Karmin”. He has remained true to his belief that art is an experience that should be easily accessible to everyone.
Castro has been interviewed by the Huffington Post.“Everybody is entitled to free speech, but it seems like for the gay tribe, this is more of an issue of equal rights — human rights,” explained Castro. “I’m against what these people stand for, what this company stands for. They’re trying to take away what little rights we already have.” And when Castro saw news photos of thousands of Americans lined up around the block to buy a sandwich in support of the company on “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day,” his heart sank even more. “I thought of the photographs from 40 years ago of Christians protesting blacks marrying whites,” said Castro. “It is the same thing.”
Commenters on Michelle Malkin’s Twitter-based site Twitchyhave launched a campaign calling Castro’s prosecution by local authorities. Sample comments:
-“So when are they going to arrest, fine, prosecute and jail this idiot communist artist? He has no consideration for Private Property, nor the cost to the taxpayers to clean up his mess. If that were my wall, he’d be dead right now.”
-“We need to be sure that this “artist” is prosecuted. Everyone needs to e-mail the Torrance police office and make sure they arrest Castro. Remind them that if they don’t they aren’t a force for justice, but for politics. Email: Communityaffairs (at) torranceca.gov.”
-“This guy has two things against him ,he is Gay and a Mexican ,can’t get any worst !!”
-“Manny is a fag and should be arrested!”
Brazil: Young Brothers Victims Of Hate Crime, Mistaken For Gay Couple
The attackers were turned over to the authorities. The gay community in Brazil rejected the violence.
A young man walked embraced his brother early Sunday in a city of Bahia died after being beaten by a group of eight men who allegedly beat two young men considering them a gay couple, police said Thursday.
Jose Leonardo da Silva, 22 years, died of his blows and his brother stayed with fractures in his face, according to local media reported.
“We started the investigations. Five young men still detained at the police station and all were questioned but have no justification for aggression. Working with the suspicion of homophobia,” he told reporters in charge of the police unit, Maria Tereza Santos Silva.
“The perpetrators and the victims did not know and had no previous fight,” he added.
The legal profession in Brazil on Thursday asked the government to take part in the investigation of crime.
“Even if they had been homosexuals, [that’s no reason for them to be victims of] any aggression, much less of a homophobic murder and brutal [attacks],” said Jaime Asfora, president of the Human Rights Commission of the Order of Lawyers of Brazil, the highest body representing the lawyers.
According to the Grupo Gay da Bahia (GGB), which has been collecting statistics on violence against the gay community for three decades, as stated on its website, 266 members of the gay community were killed in 2011 in Brazil.
USA: National Council Of La Raza Endorses Marriage Equality
The Washington Blade reports:
Board members of the country’s largest Latino civil rights organization earlier this month unanimously passed a resolution in support of marriage rights for same-sex couples.
Eric Rodriguez, vice president of public policy for the National Council of La Raza, confirmed to the Blade that the vote took place on June 9 during a previously scheduled board meeting. NCLR did not provide a copy of the resolution, but Rodriguez stressed that there was little opposition to it.
“There was discussion for that period of time, but everyone really strongly that supporting what we had already put out there in terms of our statement was the right thing to do,” he said.
Former NCLR Board Chair Danny Ortega, a Phoenix lawyer whose term ended after the vote, provided broad details of the conversations that he said took place among the 25 board members before the vote.
“We had a discussion about this and clearly some people had more questions than others, but at the end of the discussion it was unanimous,” he said.
The resolution passed less than a month after the National Association for the Advancement of Colored Persons’ Board of Directors endorsed marriage rights for same-sex couples.
President Barack Obama on May 9 publicly backed nuptials for gays and lesbians during a White House interview with ABC News. NCLR President Janet Murguía applauded him for his “historic remarks expressing support for marriage equality” after the network broadcast them.
“The board in essence validated that and said we fully support Janet’s position,” said Rodriguez. “Consistent with that belief they expressed for themselves the belief that marriage equality is consistent with the mission—the civil rights mission—of our organization.”
Murguía also applauded the resolution.
“NCLR has taken a strong stand on marriage equality and our Board of Directors wanted to affirm and support that decision, which I very much appreciate,” she told the Blade. “ That unanimous vote recognizes that marriage equality and LGBT issues are, and need to be, part of NCLR’s core civil rights agenda.”
The Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund President Thomas A. Saenz has backed same-sex marriage. His organization has not only represented people with HIV in discrimination cases, but filed amicus briefs in support of lawsuits that challenge California’s Proposition 8 and other states’ prohibitions on nuptials for gays and lesbians.
The Texas chapter of the League of United Latin American Citizens earlier this month also passed a same-sex marriage resolution during their annual convention. LULAC National President Margaret Moran joined Murguía, Saenz and other civil rights leaders who applauded Obama’s public support of nuptials for gays and lesbians.
In NCLR’s case, Ortega stressed to the Blade that the resolution is consistent with what he describes as the organization’s ongoing mission to fight discrimination.
“We thought it was not only the right thing to do, but consistent with our values as an organization,” he added.
The unanimous resolution also reflects growing support of same-sex marriage among Latinos.
An Arcus Foundation-funded survey that NCLR and Social Science Research Solutions released in April shows that 54 percent of Latinos support marriage rights for same-sex couples. Sixty-four percent of respondents said they back civil unions for gays and lesbians. The same poll found that 78 percent of Latinos support the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” while 83 percent of respondents support LGBT-specific employment protections.
“There’s just all this momentum,” said D.C.-based NCLR board member Catherine Pino as she further discussed the same-sex marriage resolution. “For NCLR to do something like this is huge. This is really, really important for our community. The board, the organization realizes that there are many, many Latino LGBT people who are part of our community.”
In spite of this growing support for same-sex marriage, the survey noted that the majority of Latinos who identify themselves as religious remain opposed to nuptials for gays and lesbians. It found that only 43 percent of those who said they are Protestant back marriage rights for same-sex couples. New York state Sen. Ruben Diaz, Sr., who is also a Pentecostal minister, remains among the most prominent Latino opponents of nuptials for gays and lesbians.
Ortega said he expects some Latinos will criticize the resolution, but Pino stressed that the majority of people to whom she has spoken about it are supportive.
“Our community is really evolving,” she said. “We’re coming to a place where we’ve realized that marriage equality is basically a civil rights issue. It doesn’t mean that Latinos want to get married in any of the churches. It’s about equality. And I think that a lot of our Latino brothers and sisters realize that and don’t think that we should be denied that opportunity.”
NCLR plans to formally announce the marriage resolution next month during its annual convention in Las Vegas.
Mexico: Mexico City Prepares Seminar On Gay Weddings
La Razón reports:
The Federal District Government (GDF) [Mexico City’s Government) presented the seminar Gay Wedding Event Marketing Workshop for Gay, which will be held on June 26 by the wedding planner and social activist Bernadette Coveney, founder of 14 Stories Gay Wedding Institute, with the aim of showing suppliers to the hospitality industry and events in Mexico’s economic potential gay weddings, which amounts to four million dollars.
One goal of the GDF is to attract tourism to the city with marriages between same-sex, after the law on the subject passed in 2009, which is intended to be an incentive for foreigners to come and get married here and so the economic benefit.
Besides the city government seeks to sensitize service providers to adopt an inclusive policy towards the gay community. Along with the GDF involved in organizing the event JW Marriot and the Association of Bridal Consultants Events Latin ABC.
During the presentation of the seminar the Minister of Tourism in Mexico City, Carlos Mackinlay, said the invitation is for all companies interested in opening show on the subject, as he said, it is clear that the gay market segment shows a increasing economic and financial importance raises a number of business opportunities.
According to figures from the firm Global Out Now, Mexico is home to nearly five million homosexuals who in 2010 represented a gross income of $ 67 billion and is expected to spend more than $ 660 million in one year. From 2010 to date, in Mexico City, 503 thousand married same-sex couples and, of those, 200 were among foreigners. This, he said Mackinlay, opens the opportunity to promote international tourism in the capital.
In turn Camelú Millan, wedding consultant, said that by themselves, weddings are an industry that is growing, but now this area requires specific training and expertise.
Mexico: Thousands Take Part In Gay Pride Parade In Mexico City
Fox News Latino reports:
Thousands of people and about 30 floats took part in Mexico’s 34th Gay Pride Parade in the capital, where a concert marked the end of the event.
The parade started at the Angel of Independence Monument and wound its way through Mexico City’s streets on Saturday.
The Tourism Secretariat estimated that at least 10,000 people attended the event, while the Federal District’s Public Safety Secretariat released a preliminary estimate of more than 30,000 paradegoers.
The theme of this year’s parade was “¡Educacion formal de la sexualidad ya!” (Formal Teaching of Sexuality, Now!).
The parade featured music, people in colorful outfits and dozens of rainbow flags on the capital’s streets.
Mexico City Tourism Secretary Carlos Mackinlay welcomed those attending the parade, calling for gender equity policies, tolerance, openness and democracy, the goals pursued in the Federal District in recent years.
Marchers shouted slogans during the parade in favor of respect for sexual diversity.
The band OV7 and more than 30 other artists performed in the Zocalo, Mexico City’s largest plaza, at the end of the parade.
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Argentina: Buenos Aires Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage For Foreigners
Think Progress reports:
Argentina has had marriage equality for same-sex couples since July, 2010, but now Buenos Aires will allow visitors to the country to marry as well. According to a new law passed last week, any foreign couple (including both same- and opposite-sex couples) can marry in Buenos Aires with only a five-day request and a temporary address. Spouses-to-be interested in marrying there are encouraged to hire a local lawyer to make sure all of the paperwork is submitted properly and efficiently.
Argentina: Government Approves Gender Identity Law
Pink News UK reports:
Having become the first country in South America to allow gay couples to marry, Argentina has passed a bill giving transgender citizens the right to have their gender recognised in law.
Hormone therapy and reassignment surgery will also become available by law for transgender citizens who will be able to change their officially recorded gender without prior medical or judicial approval.
The Gender Identity law was approved by the senate 55-0, with over a dozen absent senators and one abstention, FirstPost.com reports.
Argentinian President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is expected to sign the bill into law, having supported its passage.
Senator Osvaldo Lopez of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina’s sole gay lawmaker at the National Congress, said: “This law is going to enable many of us to have light, to come out of the darkness, to appear. There are many people in our country who also deserve the power to exist.”
Katrina Karkazis, a Stanford University medical anthropologist told FirstPost.com: “It’s saying you can change your gender legally without having to change your body at all. That’s unheard of […] this gives the individual an extraordinary amount of authority for how they want to live. It’s really incredible.”
Transgender people under the age of 18 may also take advantage of the laws with the consent of their guardians.
Study: Latino View on Gay Rights on Par With Most Americans
The Advocate reports:
A new study of over 1,000 Latino Americans find that they are not more or less opposed to advancing LGBT rights than other Americans.
The research, from the Social Science Research Solutions and the Latino advocacy organization National Council of La Raza, found that 54% of the Latinos supported same-sex marriage — that’s actually one percentage point higher than the general U.S. population, according to a recent Gallup poll. Support among Latinos for gay-inclusive protections in housing, employment, and military service was even higher.
“There is a clear misperception among the general population about where Latinos stand” on LGBT issues, David Dutwin, vice president of SSRS and author of the report, said in a statement.”In reality, as society is evolving on LGBT issues and becoming more accepting of this community, so too are Hispanics.” Read more about the findings here.
In related news, La Raza is also urging President Obama to issue an executive order banning LGBT discrimination in federal employment. “The EO is important to millions of Hispanic LGBT community members,” La Raza vice president Eric Rodriguez writes in a statement. “[The order] protects a group of people who have a long history of being marginalized and gives them hope. That is why we urge you to sign an EO on this matter as soon as possible.”
National Council Of La Raza, A Latino Rights Group, Condemns NOM
Think Progress reports:
The National Organization for Marriage continues to face fall-out over the confidential strategic memos released last week that reveal its intent to “fan hostilities” between marriage equality activists and African-American and Latino communities. Adding to a chorus of groups condemning NOM, the National Council of La Raza’a Vice President Eric Rodriguez said on Friday that the group’s tactics are “stunningly cynical” and rival those of the anti-immigration movement:
- The cravenness on display from NOM is reminiscent of another bastion of intolerance, the anti-immigrant movement. They too have enough political savvy to realize that first, Latinos are an important demographic and voting block and second, that movements built on bigotry and intolerance are most successful when their shameful agenda stays hidden from the public. […]
- If NOM had stopped its indefatigable scheming for just a moment to learn something about our community, this diabolical plan would never have been hatched. First, not all Latinos are immigrants. Second, Latino immigrants welcome integration into American society. Third, Latinos are not foolish enough to believe that NOM has our best interests at heart. And, fourth, despite what NOM may think, the Latino community overwhelmingly supports LGBT equality. The Movement Advancement Project released research recently that showed that 74 percent of Latinos “support marriage or marriage-like legal recognition for gay and lesbian couples.”
- Some have been incensed that the NAACP support for same-sex marriage is equating the gay movement to our struggle for civil rights and racial equality. We disagree. The African-American struggle will forever stand as one of the greatest civil rights movements in modern history. After 400 hundred years of slavery, the achievements of some basic civil rights, 100 years of marching, protesting, court battles and violence that led to our freedoms and many gains in society is a wonderful legacy. As we continue the struggle for total equality in America, we must also fight for the total equality for others, whether it is another race or another group. Thus, the NAACP is the best organization to join the fight for equal protection for LGBT couples to help them overcome the same irrational arguments that were once used to justify slavery and the law of “separate but equal.”
While the memos were rife with evidence of NOM’s insidious agenda, its blatant manipulation of racial politics continues to stand out as the pinnacle of an agenda built not around “protecting marriage” but promoting anti-gay intolerance.