Scotland Hub




Trans Scientist Critically Injured in Deer Attack

KatestoneA freak animal encounter has left Kate Stone, a Cambridge research engineer and owner of U.K. tech company Novalia, in critical condition. Stone was attacked by a deer outside of a home in a small Scotland town, and sustained major damage to both her spinal column and throat. Doctors reported that Stone was in "serious and stable condition" as of January 1st. 

The Advocate reports:

Gary Burton, owner of the Mo-Dhachaidh Guest House where Stone was staying, told the Press and Journal: "I understand Kate is critical in the hospital's intensive care unit.She was telling me she enjoyed the outdoors in the hills and camping on her own in remote places so any form of paralysis to such an active person will be a disaster. The incident is absolutely shocking and so unexpected. There are plenty of deer around here but you never hear of a stag attacking anyone. The force of the attack must have been ferocious. I went to the scene and found Kate's mobile phone smashed into tiny bits."

An official from Scotland's version of Fish and Game told the Telegraph that this type of deer attack is "highly unusual – a chance in a million.”

The buck was reportedly found in the guest house's garden, and it may have felt cornered by Stone and her group of friends. Still, the nature of the incident is disturbing and odd, to say the least. Our thoughts are with Stone as she recovers.

Be sure and check out a TED Talk video in which Stone discusses her research, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Scottish Football Ref Expelled For Speaking Out On Homophobic Abuse

Joe Richardson

29-year-old Joe Richardson has been officiating soccer games for over 12 years, but his experience earned him no respect at a game in Perthshire. During the match a player was suspended for violent conduct, which earned some slurs directed at Richardson. Later in the match, multiple players began hurling slurs, with one in particular approaching Richardson's boyfriend, 24-year-old Jack Nicholson, and telling him, "I hope you’re proud of your boyfriend, I’ll punch your f***ing teeth in."

Richardson reported the threats to the police and the Angus and Perthshire Referees Association, the latter of whom offered no support, telling Richardson that it was a criminal matter and he'd have to take care of it himself. Richardson spoke out on Facebook about the lack of support from the Association; the Association in turn expelled Richardson from the organization.

Richardson has appealed to the Scottish Football Association, and the police are investigating his criminal complaint. 


Scotland Advances Marriage Equality Bill in 98-15 Vote

Scotland's marriage equality bill moved forward in parliament yesterday, the BBC reports:

ScotlandThe Scottish government's Marriage and Civil Partnership Bill passed the first of three parliamentary hurdles by 98 votes to 15 with five abstentions.

Ministers said the move was the right thing to do, but the Church of Scotland and Catholic Church are opposed. Religious and belief bodies would "opt in" to perform same-sex marriages.

Same-sex couples in Scotland currently have the option to enter into civil partnerships, and there has been an indication that the earliest gay marriage ceremonies could take place by the start of 2015, if the legislation is passed.

The bill must now pass through a parliamentary committee before it is considered again by the full parliament, probably early next year.

If you'd like to watch the whole debate of the bill yesterday, you can do so,
AFTER THE JUMP...

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Scotland to Take First Vote on Marriage Equality Today: Watch it LIVE

Scotland

Scotland's parliament is set to take its first vote on marriage equality today, the BBC reports:

The Scottish government's Marriage and Civil Partnership Bill is likely to be backed in principle, when MSPs vote on it for the first time. Ministers said the move was the right thing to do but the Church of Scotland and Catholic Church are opposed. Under the bill, religious and belief bodies would need to "opt in" to perform same-sex marriages. Individual celebrants who felt it would go against their faith to carry out same-sex weddings would also be protected, and the Scottish government has insisted no part of the religious community would be forced to hold ceremonies for homosexual couples in churches. MSPs are being allowed a free vote on the legislation, rather than along party lines.

They add:

Same-sex couples in Scotland currently have the option to enter into civil partnerships, and there has been an indication that the earliest gay marriage ceremonies could take place by the start of 2015, if the legislation is passed. The bill was brought forward after a Scottish government consultation, which produced a record 77,508 responses.

You can watch the vote live  starting at approximately 12:05 pm ET.

Watch LIVE (opens in new window), AFTER THE JUMP...

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Scotland Hastening The Legalization Of Gay Marriage

Scottish Gay Couple

It's not just in the United States that marriage equality is making leaps and bounds, it's taking off on the international stage as well with Mexico, Great Britain, and New Zealand all legalizing gay marriage in the past year. Scotland, having been accused of letting their own equality legislation slip behind schedule, have now decided to fast-track the legalization of gay marriage

The Catholic church has, naturally, expressed their distaste, with spokesman John Deighan saying, 

You can only see this as undue haste. It looks like a bandwagon that no-one has been minded to take in the right direction. They ought to remember that if you make law in haste you do not get the best legislation.

Despite the finger-wagging, consideration of the bill to legalize gay marriage will begin next Thursday with two sessions representing each side of the issue. The first will have members from Stonewall Scotland, LGBT Youth Scotland, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), the Equality Network, and the Scottish Transgender Alliance. The second, the Muslim Council of Scotland, the Methodist Church in Britain, Scottish Catholic Parliamentary Office, and the Evangelical Alliance Scotland.

Though dissenters are being allowed their voice, it would seem they are in the minority. A Scottish Government spokesman said,

The Bill is proceeding on schedule with wide cross-party support. The Scottish Government is committed to a Scotland that is fair and equal and that is why we believe same-sex couples who wish should be allowed to marry as soon as possible.

If the bill is approved, it is projected to have Royal Assent for legislation by March.


Powerful Video Of Binational Couple Reveals DOMA's Devastating Effects: VIDEO

Tim and jamie

Meet Tim and Jamie.  They've been together since August 2006.  They got married in June 2012.  

But in June 2009 they had their first inkling that their international love would be tested: Jamie, a native of Scotland, was detained at SeaTac Airport due to visa problems and was denied the right to call Tim. Now, Jamie and Tim's marriage in Canada cannot be recognized legally in the United States because of the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act.  

With a Supreme Court decision on the horizon, we can only hope couples like Tim and Jamie will soon be married in the eyes of the law.  

Watch their emotional testimony, AFTER THE JUMP...

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