Oklahoma Bill Would Give Clergy Power Over Marriage Licenses Religion News Service – Huffington Post

Oklahoma Bill Would Give Clergy Power Over Marriage Licenses
Religion News Service | By Greg Horton
Posted: 03/12/2015 4:18 pm EDT Updated: 03/12/2015 4:59 pm EDT
OKLAHOMA CAPITOL

OKLAHOMA CITY (RNS) — In an effort to block the state’s involvement with gay marriage, the Oklahoma House of Representatives passed a bill Tuesday (March 10) to abolish marriage licenses in the state.

The legislation, authored by Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell, amends language in the state law that governs the responsibilities of court clerks. All references to marriage licenses were removed.

Russ said the intent of the bill is to protect court clerks caught between the federal and state governments. A federal appeals court overturned Oklahoma’s ban on same-sex marriage last year. Russ, like many Republican legislators in the state, including Gov. Mary Fallin, believes the federal government overstepped its constitutional authority on this issue.

Acknowledging that his bill is partially in response to the federal court ruling, Russ told ABC News affiliate KSWO that the federal government lacks the power to “force its new definitions of what they believe on independent states.”

Russ said the federal government is attempting to change the traditional definition of marriage, so his legislation would place the Oklahoma State Capitol (Oklahoma City, Okalhoma)responsibility for officiating marriages in the hands of clergy.

“Marriage was historically a religious covenant first and a government-recognized contract second,” Russ told The Oklahoman.

The legislation has sparked controversy, both in the Legislature and with groups such as Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Oklahoma Democrats are concerned that the legislation will lead to a “Pandora’s box” of issues, including polygamy, once the government’s authority to regulate marriage is removed.

Americans United released a statement opposing the bill, saying it is biased against same-sex couples and nontheists, including atheists. Russ has been unapologetic in defending his exclusion of nontheists from the right to marry.

“They don’t have a spiritual basis for a marriage and don’t want to have a clergy member or a priest or someone involved in the spiritual aspect,” Russ told KSWO, “then they can file an affidavit of common-law marriage.”

The bill would require court clerks to issue certificates of marriage signed by ordained clergy or affidavits of common-law marriage.

The Senate has not yet voted on the measure. Nor has Gov. Fallin indicated what she will do if the bill passes the Senate.

Proposition Love Jewelry Designers Talk Subsidizing LGBT Equality Huffington Post Gay Voices

Proposition Love Jewelry Designers Talk Subsidizing LGBT Equality (AUDIO)

Posted: Updated: 

2014-11-05-HuffProp.jpgThis week I talked with Sam Street and Jonathan Tack about their exquisite jewelry line, Proposition Love Jewelry, which donates 10 to 20 percent of proceeds to LGBT-related causes. Jewelry industry veterans Street and Tack were married in California just a few days before Proposition 8 was voted into law. They were part of the lucky few who never had their right to marry taken away, but it made them realize how precious such a thing can be and motivated them to become active in the fight for LGBT equality.

I talked with them about what inspired them to create Proposition Love Jewelry and their spin on LGBT issues. When asked about their personal commitment to LGBT civil rights, Tack stated:

We launched a new collection called Love Is Love because we believe that everyone has the right to love whoever they want to love, and it should be their choice and their civil right. We did a big launch party for Love Is Love, actually, in Beverly Hills, in which we designed various rings for numerous celebrities. For example, we did a ring for Kathy Griffin; we did one for Perez Hilton; we designed one for Melissa Rivers, Tori Spelling — the list goes on and on. It was so heartwarming for us because when we reached out to these celebrities, you know, in their busy lives, we said, “Hey, listen, we would love to design a ring for you to support gay marriage and LGBTQ rights, and we would like to auction the ring and donate 100 percent of the proceeds from the sale to the charity of your choice that would obviously correlate to what we’re looking to support here.” It was just overwhelming how many celebrities jumped on board and just said, “Hey, we love it. We’re going to do it.”

LISTEN:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/charlotte-robinson/proposition-love-jewelry-_b_6107230.html

Sam Street and Jonathan Tack founded Proposition Love Jewelry in 2011 as a symbol of love and commitment to one another and a pledge to support the rights of all. Proposition Love Jewelry proudly donates 10 percent of profits to organizations that support marriage equality, LGBT rights, LGBT youth anti-bullying initiatives and HIV/AIDS activism. They increased their donation to 20 percent for all purchases made in the states where marriage equality has recently become law. For their Countdown Collection they have created a wedding ring for each state to symbolize the historic moment that marriage equality became law. Recently their exquisite LGBT jewelry line has become available at Macys.

For more information, visit propositionlove.com.

Listen to more interviews with LGBTQ leaders, allies, and celebrities at OUTTAKE VOICES™.

Download interviews on iTunes.

Follow Charlotte Robinson on Twitter:www.twitter.com/OUTTAKEVOICES

 

Proposition Love interview on Outtake Voices

Monday, November 3, 2014

Proposition Love Jewelry Supports LGBT Equality

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Sam Street and Jonathan Tack about their exquisite jewelry line Proposition Love Jewelry that donates 10-20 percent of proceeds to LGBT related causes. Jewelry industry veterans Street and Tack were married in California just a few days before Proposition 8 was voted in. They were part of the lucky few who never had their right to marry taken away but it made them realize how precious such a thing can be and motivated them to become active in the fight for LGBT equality. We talked to Sam and Jonathan about what inspired them to create Proposition Love Jewelry and their spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what their personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Tack stated, “We launched a new collection called Love Is Love because we believe that everyone has the right to love whoever they want to love and it should be their choice and their civil right. We did a big launch party for Love Is Love actually in Beverly Hills in which we designed various rings for numerous celebrities. For example we did a ring for Kathy Griffin; we did one for Perez Hilton; we designed one for Melissa Rivers, Tori Spelling, the list goes on and on. It was so heart warming for us because when we reached out to these celebrities, you know in their busy lives we said Hey Listen we would love to design a ring for you to support gay marriage and LGBTQ rights and we would like to auction the ring and donate 100% of the proceeds from the sale to the charity of your choice that would obviously correlate to what we’re looking to support here. It was just overwhelming how many celebrities jumped on board and just said Hey we love it, we’re going to do it.”

Sam Street and Jonathan Tack founded Proposition Love Jewelry in 2011 as a symbol of love and commitment to one another and a pledge to support the rights of all. Proposition Love Jewelry proudly donates 10% of profits to organizations that support marriage equality, LGBT rights, LGBT youth anti bullying and HIV/AIDS activism. They increased their donation to 20% for all purchases made in the states where gay and lesbian marriage has recently passed. For their Countdown Collection they have created a wedding ring for each state to symbolize the historic moment for the passing of marriage equality. Recently their exquisite LGBT jewelry line has become available at Macys.
For More Info: propositionlove.com 

To hear the live interview copy and paste the link below –

 http://voices.outtakeonline.com/2014/11/proposition-love-jewelry-supports-lgbt.html

Marriage Equality Recognized in Six More States By Federal Government – OUT.COM

Marriage Equality Recognized in Six More States By Federal Government

Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, North Carolina, Wyoming, and West Virginia join the states where same-sex marriage is recognized by the federal government.

BY JASE PEEPLES

OCTOBER 25 2014 5:12 PM ET

 
 

Attorney General Eric Holder announced today that the federal government will now recognize same-sex marriage the states of Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, North Carolina, Wyoming, and West Virginia, reports CBS News.

This brings the total number of states where same-sex marriage is recognized at a federal level to 32, in addition to the District of Columbia.

Same-sex couples who married in those states following the recent wave of historic marriage equality wins are now eligible for several federal benefits, which include veterans’ and Social Security benefits.

“With each new state where same-sex marriages are legally recognized, our nation moves closer to achieving of full equality for all Americans,” the attorney general said in a statement. “We are acting as quickly as possible with agencies throughout the government to ensure that same-sex married couples in these states receive the fullest array of benefits allowable under federal law.”

The news follows on the heels of the Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month not to hear a series of cases regarding same-sex marriage, which allowed the previous favorable rulings on marriage equality by lower courts to stand in several states.  

Despite the rapidly changing landscape of marriage equality in the U.S., a few state officials aren’t giving up their antigay litigation, including Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, and Montana Governor Steve Bullock.

Antigay groups such as the National Organization for Marriage are also desperately clinging to their defense of same-sex marriage bans. NOM Chair John Eastman told reporters earlier this week, “Until the Supreme Court decides it, this remains a viable option.”