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Air New Zealand, Jesse Tyler Ferguson to Host Country's First Gay Wedding at 30,000 Feet

New Zealand's marriage equality law does not go into effect until August 19, but Air New Zealand wants to host the country's first gay wedding, and is bringing a couple of American hosts on board to help out, the Herald Sun reports:

Jesse_fergusonIt has recruited American actor and same sex marriage campaigner Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who plays Mitchell in Modern Family, to be on board for the stunt. The openly-gay star is due to wed Justin Mikita in New York this month. Gay marriage was legalised in New York two years ago.

Air New Zealand's head of global brand development Jodi Williams said the wedding would attract media interest from around the globe.

"Naturally, the couple's family and friends will want to be on hand for the special occasion so we have plenty of seats set aside for them," she said.

The airline is also providing a honeymoon at Palm Springs in the United States.


Drag Queen Wows 'X Factor New Zealand' with 'Proud Mary': VIDEO

Tonga

Drag queen Ashley Tonga looks like the contestant to beat on New Zealand's X Factor. The trainee hairdresser knocked the judges and audiences' socks off with a performance of "Proud Mary".

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Continue reading "Drag Queen Wows 'X Factor New Zealand' with 'Proud Mary': VIDEO" »


New Zealand Lawmaker Who Delivered Viral Marriage Equality Speech Invited to Appear on Ellen: VIDEO

Williamson

Last week New Zealand MP Maurice Williamson delivered a hilarious and uplifting speech before the passage of the country's marriage equality bill. Since it was posted, it has been viewed more than a million times.

Said Williamson in the speech:

"I also had a leader tell me I would burn in the fires of hell for eternity and that was a bad mistake because I've got a degree in physics. I used the thermodynamic laws of physics. I put in my body weight and my humidity and so on. I assumed the furnace to be at 5000 degrees and I will last for just on 2.1 seconds."

“One of the messages I’d had was that this bill was the cause of our drought. This bill was the cause of our drought. Well if any of you follow my Twitter account, In the Pakuranga electorate this morning, it was pouring with rain, we had the most enormous big gay rainbow across my electorate. It has to be a sign."

The lawmaker was asked to appear on Ellen, TVNZ reports, and we may soon see that happen:

Normally politicians are not allowed to take up the offer of a paid trip, but Prime Minister John Key told TV ONE's Breakfast this morning that Williamson "can absolutely go".

"Anyone who has seen Maurice speak before, the good people of Pakuranga, will know what I'm talking about, he is very funny. He is ferociously bright, he's always had that incredibly witty sense of humour and I don't think that he did an awful lot of planning for that speech."

The Prime Minister says rules surrounding actors equity mean people who appear on such shows have to be paid - but as long as Maurice Williamson donates the fee to charity, it will be fine.

Williamson's speech, if you'd like to revisit it, is AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "New Zealand Lawmaker Who Delivered Viral Marriage Equality Speech Invited to Appear on Ellen: VIDEO" »


New Zealand MP Delivers Hilarious, Uplifting Speech to Parliament About Gay Marriage: VIDEO

Williamson

New Zealand MP Maurice Williamson gave one of the greatest speeches ever delivered at a marriage equality debate last night in the NZ parliament, before the bill legalizing same-sex marriage was passed in a 77-44 vote.

I can't imagine that this wasn't the best speech of the night.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Said Williamson to great laughter (my transcript):

"I've had a reverend in my local electorate say the 'gay onslaught will start the day this law is passed'. So, we are struggling to know what the gay onslaught will look like. We don't know if it will come down the Pakaranga highway as a series of troops or whether it will be a gas that flows over the electorate and blocks us all in."

"I also had a Catholic priest tell me that I was supporting an unnatural act. I found that interesting coming from someone who has taken an oath of celibacy for his whole life."

"I also had a leader tell me I would burn in the fires of hell for eternity and that was a bad mistake because I've got a degree in physics. I used the thermodynamic laws of physics. I put in my body weight and my humidity and so on. I assumed the furnace to be at 5000 degrees and I will last for just on 2.1 seconds."

“One of the messages I’d had was that this bill was the cause of our drought. This bill was the cause of our drought. Well if any of you follow my Twitter account, In the Pakuranga electorate this morning, it was pouring with rain, we had the most enormous big gay rainbow across my electorate. It has to be a sign."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

And if you haven't watched the entire Parliament breaking into song after the bill was passed, it's something you must do.

Incidentally, here's the photo Williamson posted to Twitter:

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Continue reading "New Zealand MP Delivers Hilarious, Uplifting Speech to Parliament About Gay Marriage: VIDEO" »


Watch the New Zealand Parliament Break Into Song as Gay Marriage is Legalized: VIDEO

Nz_parliament

Hundreds of spectators in the gallery of New Zealand's parliament broke into a rendition of the love song “Pokarekare Ana” in the indigenous Maori language after the marriage equality bill was passed today.

Louisa Wall, the bill's lesbian sponsor, is below on the left.

This is what equality sounds like.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Wall

Continue reading "Watch the New Zealand Parliament Break Into Song as Gay Marriage is Legalized: VIDEO" »


New Zealand Becomes 13th Nation to Approve Marriage Equality

New Zealand has legalized same-sex marriage in a 77-44 vote on a third and final reading of the bill, the New Zealand Herald reports:

NewzealandThe bill will take effect in mid August and comes 27 years after New Zealand decriminalised homosexuality.

Same-sex marriage supporters at the Campaign for Marriage Equality party in Wellington cheered loudly and applauded as the bill was passed into law.

More than a hundred supporters gathered at the San Francisco Bath House bar on Wellington's Cuba St to watch the vote. They will be joined later tonight by the bill's sponsor, Labour MP Louisa Wall, who is expected to be welcomed with a haka before addressing supporters.

There was a din of anticipation in the moments before the vote was announced, followed by a hush as the vote was read.

The bar then erupted into cheers and applause. Supporters embraced and joined in a waiata following the vote.

New Zealand joins Uruguay, The Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal, Iceland, Argentina, and Denmark as the 13th nation to offer its citizens nationwide marriage equality.

Brazil, Mexico, and of course, the U.S. offer it in parts of the country.


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