Posts Tagged ‘gay marriage’

Rally for Marriage Equality and protest against Proposition 8

There are protests taking place from coast to coast tomorrow to show national dismay at the passing of Proposition 8 in California, as well as similar constitutional amendments banning marriage equality in Florida and Arizona. With the passage of these three initiatives, 30 states have now amended their constitutions, restricting marriage as an opposite gender privilege. A fourth state, Arkansas, passed a law banning unmarried couples from adopting children or being foster parents.

Rallies are taking place in downtown Minneapolis at 12:30pm in front of the Hennepin County Government Center, and at 3pm in Saint Paul on the south steps of the State Capitol Building. Join the Impact has more information about these rallies, as well as others going on across the country.

Minnesota State Bar Association’s Unmarried Couples Task Force

I hate that this even had to happen this way, but I found out about this via Katherine Kersten’s column in today’s Star Tribune:

Paving the way for gay marriage in Minnesota

Below the radar, the groundwork is being laid to change the meaning of marriage in Minnesota.

The new “Rights of Unmarried Couples Task Force” of the Minnesota State Bar Association is the latest step in this process.

Here’s how the Bar Association defined the task force’s mission: “In light of the disparity between legal rights and protections available to same-sex couples as compared to different-sex couples,” the task force will “review the current state of Minnesota law and … make recommendations as to desirable changes, if any, in the law to address this disparity.”

“The task force’s goal is to ensure that Minnesota law treats all people equally and with fairness,” said attorney David Ahlvers, a task force co-chairman. “It is not to make recommendations on equal marriage rights for same-sex couples and heterosexual couples.”

I even finished reading it and I do believe my blood pressure did not rise at all. Which is not to say that I agree with her. It’s just that she rehashed an old, tired argument and then drew a ridiculous conclusion. Same ol’, same ol’. Oh, and I avoided all the reader comments.

Looks like the the MSBA assembly voted to create the task force in April of this year and expects to finish staffing it soon as applications to serve on working committees are due today.

There are currently 515 ways in which Minnesota laws discriminate against couples and families (pdf) (start on page 9). Knowing what those are, it’ll be interesting to see what the task force recommends.

Folks are working on it. That makes me feel good.

Project 515 and Marriage Equality in Minnesota

So, Connecticut has become the 3rd state in the union to legalize gay marriage. The fine folks of Connecticut came to this place via lawsuit. A number of gay couples, upon having their marriage license applications rejected, banded together and sued the state.

As you’ll recall, there is a group preparing to bring a similar lawsuit against the state of Minnesota.

It is the stated opinion of a number of Minnesota’s most-respected LGBT advocacy organizations — namely Rainbow Families/Family Equality Council, OutFront Minnesota, and Project 515 — that legislation is the way to go, not litigation.

Read on for the How and the Why…

Gay Couples Preparing to Sue State

As posted at Shower Curtain Chronicles.

Three Minnesota couples, including Duane and myself, are preparing to sue the state of Minnesota for denying us our constitutional right to civil marriage. The Minneapolis law firm of Mansfield, Tanick and Cohen has been selected to bring the case against the state. Because the legal fees associated with this case are expected to be thirty to forty thousand dollars, litigants are seeking thirty to forty lesbian and gay couples to join in the suit, which is expected to be filed later this summer.

If you and your same-sex spouse would like to be a part of this historic battle for civil marriage rights in Minnesota, or know of any couples who are sick of being treated like second class citizens and having NOTHING done about it, please call 763-219-1206. Thank you.

I hate that litigation is the way this has to be done. I think that, sadly, this is the easiest way to accomplish this goal. I hate that I can’t rely on my fellow Minnesotans to do what is fair and just (by voting).

I think that there are more appropriate ways to achieve equality (e.g., by truly separating civil marriage from spiritual institutions). At the same time, marriage is not the be-all and end-all of equality, though it does kill a lot of birds with one stone.

Despite the time and effort and money I put into legal fees and drawing up paperwork, it will take one trip to the hospital to turn my world upside down. My partner at least has her parents nearby. I’ve got no one.

So if this is what we have to do, let’s do it.


  • The Four Firkins. Minnesota’s first specialty beer store opens Saturday in SLP. Grand Opening on June 14. (via east-lake and MN Beer)
  • “The Neighborhood Energy Connection (NEC) (formerly the Saint Paul Neighborhood Energy Consortium) is a nonprofit organization that provides energy efficiency information, services and programs to residents, businesses, and communities across Minnesota.” They provide a lot of info, connect you to a lot of resources, and also provide some for-pay services.
  • NextStep: “This site has been designed to provide Minnesota Sustainable Communities Network (MnSCN) members and others with information, access to resources, opportunities for networking, and inspiration on the topic of sustainable communities. NextStep site users have the ability to post information and resources on the site as well as to access the resources and information posted on the site.” Great event listing. Sortable by regions around the state.
  • The Sibley Bike Depot is “a non-profit membership-based biking and walking organization. We promote healthy transportation and help new riders through advocacy, classes and the Sibley Bike Depot (a community education, repair and retail facility).” Located at 712 University Ave in St Paul. They have a pretty cool Earn-A-Bike program.
  • Matt and Colin are filling in for Taylor at Mediation this week. Matt starts off with a self-pimp of a legislative session wrap up. “If you are a lunch room lady…
  • Citizen-penned marriage equality bill introduced in Minnesota legislature. “The bill is modeled after a similar bill that has passed the California Legislature twice, only to be vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger said that the issue was for the courts to decide — and they did.”
  • Bob Collins is a Lynx fan! Sunday afternoon’s home opener was a stellar display. Only one game, yes, but the win over Detroit (three Eastern Conference championships in a row) bodes well for the team’s 10th season. I had courtside seats!
  • The Uptake on the RNC media walk through.
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