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02/18/2014

Copenhagen To Host Gay And Straight Weddings During Eurovision This May

During last year's Eurovision Song Contest, Krista Siegfrieds of Finland performed "Marry Me," and placed a big 'ole kiss on one of her female back-up singers to boot (right). Looking to up the romantic ante, Eurovision's 2014 host city, Copenhagen, will offer three locations for all couples, same-sex included, to be married around the city. 

EurovisionkissEurovision reports:

“Since 2010, we have had a lot of success marrying same- and opposite-sex pairs in the open air at selected locations in Copenhagen. As a city, we put a lot of effort into making everyone welcome and the Eurovision Song Contest is an excellent opportunity to offer weddings," explains the director of Copenhagen’s Citizen Service, Thomas Jakobsen, who is responsible for marriage ceremonies in the City.

“In 1989, Copenhagen City Hall performed the world’s first ever civil partnership. Now, 25 years later, the City of Copenhagen will once again play host to diversity with wedding arrangements in the city," says Søren Lauersen, Chairperson of LGBT Denmark.

"I am sure that many couples, gay and straight from both home and abroad will accept this offer”, he went on to say.

The marriage ceremonies will take place May 7th, 9th, and 10th, and you can find more information about them at Copenhagen's tourism website.

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 12:01 PM EST by in Copenhagen, Denmark, Eurovision, Gay Wedding, News | Permalink | Comments (0)


First Openly Gay Oklahoma State Senator To Run For Congress

Al McAffrey, the Oklahoma state senator for District 46, announced Sunday that he would be running for a fifth district congressional seat. McAffrey, who owns a cremation and mortuary service, was an Oklahoma City police officer, and is a Navy veteran, was the first openly gay member of the Sooner State's legislature. 

Mcaffrey_bioKRMG.com reports:

At the news conference announcing the run, McAffrey said, “it’s not about political parties or bipartisanship, rather about our friends and neighbors."

He continued "but to do it, we have to send different people to Congress. I’m running because I believe there is a better way. As a father of three wonderful women and a grandfather, I know my daughters deserve better.” 

...

McAffrey went on to say, “right now, Washington is stuck in gridlock. Folks on both sides of the aisle are so stuck they can't manage to get anywhere on anything. And while they're playing politics, the folks back here at home are paying the price.”

... 

He continued “we have commitments from a lot of people here in Oklahoma and outside of Oklahoma helping us raise money.” 

McAffrey reportedly told The Gayly that he has "been looking at this race for about a year." 

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 11:37 AM EST by in Gay Pride, Gay Stories, News, Oklahoma | Permalink | Comments (4)


Chris Pratt is the Hottest Shirtless Creature in the New 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Teaser: VIDEO

Pratt

A new teaser for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy film adaptation has hit the web. The film, which also stars Zoe Saldana, Lee Pace, Dave Bautista, and Benicio del Toro, comes to theaters on August 1. Its CGI aliens Rocket Raccoon and Groot are voiced by Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Pratt underwent an intense fitness regimen for the film. You may recall the shirtless selfie that immediately went viral last July.

A full trailer is on the way tonight.

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 11:17 AM EST by in Chris Pratt, Film, News | Permalink | Comments (18)


Kentucky Couples Sue for Gay Marriage License After Judge Strikes Down Portion of Ban

Blanchard

Last Wednesday a federal judge in Kentucky struck down a portion of Kentucky's ban on same-se marriage, ruling that the state must recognize gay marriages performed elsewhere.

On Friday, two couples filed an intervening complaint in that suit, asking Judge John G. Heyburn to extend his ruling on the same grounds - that the constitutional right to equal protection is violated by Kentucky's ban on same-sex marriage - and force the state to allow them to marry.

The AP adds:

...two couples, Timothy Love and Lawrence Ysunza, who have been together for 33 years, and Maurice Blanchard and Dominique James, who have been together for a decade, want U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II to issue order the state to stop denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

"To have that acknowledged, we would be elated. Obviously, there's a lot to it," James told The Associated Press. "We just want to be treated equal to our heterosexual brothers and sisters. If we can get that, we will be satisfied."

Allison Martin, a spokeswoman for the Kentucky Attorney General's Office, said attorneys were notified of the injunction request Friday afternoon and were reviewing it.

An opinion from Heyburn is expected within the next 30 days.

Towleroad readers may remember that Blanchard, who is a Baptist minister, and James staged a 'pray-in' at Louisville City Hall in January 2013 where they were arrested after requesting a marriage license.

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 10:58 AM EST by in Gay Marriage, Kentucky, News | Permalink | Comments (3)


IOC Defends Removal of Italian LGBT Activist Vladimir Luxuria from Sochi Olympic Village

1_luxuria

Yesterday Towleroad reported that transgender former Italian MP and activist Vladimir Luxuria and her companions Pio and Amedeo, a duo who star in the Italian television program called Reservoir Dogs and call themselves the Hyenas, were removed from the Sochi Olympic village near the hockey arena.

Luxuria reported that they were hustled away and dumped in the countryside. Her spectator pass was also confiscated:

"I was very, very afraid this time because the first time they said, 'It's OK for the first time, don't do it again for the second time.' So, this time I was a little bit afraid," Luxuria said. "But they just left me outside, in the country, there, outside and that's it."

The International Olympic Committee is defending the actions of Sochi authorities, the AP reports:

IOC spokesman Mark Adams said Tuesday that "what happened yesterday is still a little bit unclear," but said Luxuria had set out to demonstrate at the stadium.

"I know her stated aim to demonstrate in the venue and I believe after a couple of hours when she finally got to the venue I think she was escorted from there peacefully, not detained," Adams said.

He said Olympic Park and the venues are not the right place for demonstrations, and added: "We would ask anyone to make their case somewhere else."

Luxuria was wearing a rainbow outfit and shouting 'Gay is okay' in both Russian and English when she was apprehended.

According to Italian media reports, Luxuria and the two men were asked to leave the country and were to be escorted to the airport this morning at 11:30 am by the Russia Foreign Ministry.

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 10:16 AM EST by in Italy, Russia, Sochi Olympics, Vladimir Luxuria | Permalink | Comments (17)


Colin Kaepernick and Cam Newton Welcome Michael Sam and a Gay NFL Player: VIDEO

Kaepernick

ESPN asked 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick and Panthers QB Cam Newton about Michael Sam and if he'll be welcomed into the NFL. Of course he will, they said.

Said Kaepernick:

"I think when he steps into that locker room, everyone's going to know that he's there to help us win games. And that's why you're in the NFL, to help us win games. No one cares if you're black, white, straight, gay, Christian, Jewish, whatever it may be. When you step on that field you're a member of in my case, the 49ers. Or the Carolina Panthers. That's your job. That's your occupation."

Newton added:

"Absolutely. His job is a linebacker. Colin said it best when he said we don't worry about each other outside of football. Of course we have, 'Are you ok? Is there anything I can help you with?' But we're football players. We're in this organization for one reason and one reason only. And if you're helping us to attain success, your personal life is your personal life."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Posted Feb. 18,2014 at 9:52 AM EST by in Cam Newton, Colin Kaepernick, Football (American), Michael Sam, News | Permalink | Comments (26)



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