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Tag Archives: city
Pope wades diplomatically into gay marriage debate – Quincy Herald-Whig | Illinois & Missouri News, Sports
By NICOLE WINFIELD Associated Press
VATICAN CITY (AP) – Pope Francis waded diplomatically into the gay marriage debate Friday, telling the Archbishop of Canterbury he wants to work together to promote family values “based on marriage.”
Francis, who vigorously opposed gay marriage in his native Argentina, and Archbishop Justin Welby chatted, prayed and had lunch together at the Vatican in their first encounter since both were installed in March.
Welby, the spiritual leader of the 77 million-strong Anglican Communion, has opposed proposed legislation in Britain that would legalize gay marriage, saying it seeks to abolish and redefine the institution and would weaken 1 of the cornerstones of society.
He delivered a speech last week before the House of Lords before it moved the gay marriage bill one step closer to becoming law. The legislation would enable gay couples to get married in both civil and religious ceremonies in England and Wales.
In his remarks to Welby, Francis said he hoped they could collaborate in promoting the sacredness of life “and the stability of families founded on marriage.” He noted that Welby had recently spoken out on the issue, a reference to his House of Lords speech.
Significantly, though, Francis didn’t specify that marriage should be based on a union between a man and woman, which is how Benedict XVI and John Paul II routinely defined it in a way that made clear their opposition to same-sex marriage.
Vatican officials said Francis’ phrasing was a diplomatic attempt to make his point without making a provocative pronouncement, particularly during an inaugural meeting with Welby that was aimed at getting to know one another. Francis though has steered clear of the gay marriage debate as it has recently roiled France and Britain, and in general has refrained from making headline-grabbing public comments on hot-button current issues.
Welby said the pope’s remarks, both in the public speech he delivered and their 30-minute private meeting, showed that “we were absolutely at one on the issues, and equally at one in our condemnation of homophobic behavior and our sense that the essential dignity of the human being is where you start.”
As archbishop of Buenos Aires, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio didn’t shy away from voicing strong opposition to gay marriage, though he was pragmatic in sensing Argentina was heading in that direction.
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VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis waded diplomatically into the gay marriage debate Friday, telling the Archbishop of Canterbury he wants to work together to promote family values “based on marriage.”
A person holds a rainbow flag during a Gay Pride parade. (credit: Peter Kohalmi/AFP/GettyImages)
DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Hundreds rallied in support for gay marriage Saturday.
The gay pride march was originally planned to bring attention to two marriage equality cases awaiting a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court. Recent events however, at Dallas City Hall have given the rally a new purpose.
Supporters said theyre protesting Mayor Mike Rawlings due to his decision not to put a resolution supporting gay marriage on the city council agenda.
This isnt the first time Rawlings has drawn the ire of protestors. Last yea he refused to sign a pledge in support of a Constitutional law allowing same-sex marriage.
Im a bit pledge-phobic, Rawlings told reporters at the Dallas Resource Center afterward. I think America has got too many pledges out there and I think its simplistic and not substantive.
While signing the pledge may be a simplistic action for Rawlings, members of the LGBT community said it could have resonated deeply throughout the city.
The Boys Scouts of America just lifted its ban on gay scouts, but not without loud and widespread opposition. A dozen states plus the District of Columbia now permit same-sex marriage. The U.S. Supreme Court will also rule on same-sex marriage this year.
Pride Month is held to commemorate the June 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City, which was the turning point for the gay rights movement.
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Israel to Confiscate Palestine Land in West Bank
The Israeli regime has announced plans to illegally confiscate about 100 acres of Palestinian land in east of the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank.
By: Joe Sidharta
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Two gay men have married in the south of France, becoming the first same-sex couple to wed in the country since a controversial change in the law just 10 days ago.
Vincent Aubin and Bruno Boileau exchanged vows in Montpellier city hall before the mayor, relatives, friends and media as police stood guard outside to ensure the ceremony was not disrupted.
“It’s a great pleasure for me to declare you married by law,” said Montpellier’s left-wing Mayor Helene Mandroux, as the couple embraced to a huge cheer from an audience of about 500.
She earlier called the law that legalised gay marriage “a stage in the modernisation of our country”.
The couple married thanks to a reform that has stoked some of the fiercest French street protests in decades.
On Sunday, hundreds of thousands of opponents of gay marriage flooded Paris in a rally that ended in clashes between police and hardliners.
But, in the main, protesters stayed away from the wedding in Montpellier, France’s self-proclaimed most gay-friendly city. The small demonstrations that did occur failed to disrupt the main event.
Moments before the men walked in, a smoke bomb was lobbed from outside into the perimeter of the city hall. Security guards rushed to investigate, but the wedding went ahead.
Plans to broadcast the ceremony live on a giant TV screen and lay on drinks outside had already been ditched amid fears about protests.
An emotional Mr Aubin gave a brief speech to those present at the wedding, thanking his family, friends and government spokeswoman Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, a personal friend present at the ceremony.
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City council has no legal grounds to deny grant money to Pride over the gay festivals refusal to ban the group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid, Torontos chief lawyer has told Mayor Rob Fords executive committee.
In a confidential and frank April report obtained by the Star, city solicitor Anna Kinastowski says she cannot recommend that council require Pride to ban the phrase Israeli apartheid as a condition of receiving taxpayer funds.
Kinastowski writes: The term Israeli Apartheid does not violate the citys human rights policy, does not appear to violate the Ontario Human Rights Code, and does not appear to constitute hate as the (Supreme) Court has interpreted it and would therefore appear to fall within the realm of potentially offensive yet protected speech.
The committee will again discuss Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (QuAIA) on Tuesday during a debate on the citys anti-discrimination policy for grant recipients. Prides annual grant about $124,000 last year will be debated by council in June, only 10 days before the festival begins.
Pro-Israel councillors have repeatedly and unsuccessfully sought to find a way to tweak city rules in a way that might prevent the activist group from marching in the annual Pride parade. Councillor James Pasternak, who does not sit on the executive, has even floated the idea of offering Pride a diversity bonus for excluding QuAIA.
Citing a February Supreme Court decision, Kinastowski also warns against a 2012 suggestion from the executive to change the anti-discrimination policy to prohibit anything which shows a lack of respect for all persons.
Kinastowski, cautioning against imposing an overbroad standard for discrimination, says such a policy would be unlikely to withstand a court challenge on freedom-of-speech grounds.
Thats what we know. I mean, its not a secret. Every single report that comes out says we dont violate any hate laws or anything like that, said QuAIA member Tony Souza. Were not breaking any laws, and we certainly dont hate anybody. We just want justice in Palestine.
I dont think the question is a legal question I think the question is one of morality and divisiveness, said Avi Benlolo, chief executive of the pro-Israel Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies. And if we want to live in a pluralistic society where we demonstrate respect for one another, then theres just morality. . . . Were just saying to the city we dont think this is socially acceptable.
Sporadic violence erupts across the West Bank and in East Jerusalem as Palestinians mark 65 years since displacement.
Tens of thousands of Palestinians marked the 65th anniversary of their mass displacement during the war over Israel’s 1948 creation, marching in the streets and in some parts of the West Bank clashing with Israeli security forces.
Every May 15, Palestinians hold rallies to commemorate the “nakba,” or “catastrophe” – the term they use to describe the displacement, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were driven from their homes during the fighting. The dispute over the fate of those Palestinians and their descendants, now numbering several million people, remains at the core of the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Israel views the Palestinians’ return as demographic suicide and expects the displaced and their descendants to be taken in by a future Palestinian state. But intermittent Israeli-Palestinian attempts to agree on the terms of such a state have so far failed.
Across the West Bank today, sirens wailed at noon for 65 seconds to commemorate the 65 years since the “nakba.” Thousands marched in Ramallah from the grave of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to the city center. Many wore black in a sign of mourning, holding Palestinian flags and large keys symbolizing the homes they left behind.
“The right of return will not die,” chanted the protesters. Schools closed at midday and parents brought their children to the demonstration.
In Ramallah, 38-year-old Manwal Awad brought her 11-year-old twins to the protest. “Every year I bring them with me to inherit the story of our nakba, and to keep the dream of return,” she said.
Rallies were elsewhere in the West Bank as well, and in several places demonstrators throwing rocks clashed with Israeli security forces, who responded with tear gas, Israel’s military said. Near the volatile city of Hebron, a fire bomb hit at an Israeli military vehicle, causing it to overturn and injuring four soldiers, the military said.
In east Jerusalem, Israeli police used water cannon and officers on horseback to disperse an “illegal march,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Fourteen protesters were arrested, as was a Palestinian suspected of attacking a Jewish man as he walked near the Old City, he said.
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Sen. Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis, left, sponsor of the gay marriage bill in the Minnesota Senate, and his partner Richard Leyva greet a large, joyous crowd as the arrive at the Minnesota State Capitol in St. Paul, Minn. on Monday, May 13, 2013. The Minnesota Senate is scheduled open debate at noon on a bill that would make Minnesota the 12th state to legalize gay marriage and the first to pass such a measure out of its Legislature. The chamber’s majority Democratic leaders have said they expect it to pass and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton has promised to sign it. (AP Photo/The St. Paul Pioneer Press, Ben Garvin) MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE OUT (Ben Garvin)
The Minnesota Senate approved a bill to legalize gay marriage on Monday, positioning the state to become the 12th in the nation to legalize same-sex marriage.
It passed on a 37-30, with one Republican crossing over to vote yes and three members of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor party voting no. Gov. Mark Dayton is expected to sign it as soon as Tuesday and was tentatively planning a celebration on the Capitol steps for event. Gay marriages could begin Aug. 1.
“With just a few words we have the ability to bring families across Minnesota into the full sunshine of equality and freedom,” said bill sponsor Sen. Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis.
Gay marriage supporters, donning “I Support the Freedom to Marry” T-shirts and rainbow flags, far out numbered opponents at the state Capitol on Monday, arriving early to line the steps to greet lawmakers as they came in. St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman also proclaimed May 13-17 “Freedom to Marry Week” in the city. Pride flags line the Wabasha Street Bridge, which has been temporarily named the “Freedom to Marry Bridge.”
Outside the Senate chamber, the Capitol erupted with cheers when the vote was finalized.
But opponents said as there’s a lot of celebrating, there’s a lot of grieving as well. Sen. Dan Hall, R-Burnsville, said legalizing same-sex marriage would divide the state like nothing since the Civil War, destroying businesses and confusing children.
“People ask me, ‘Senator Hall, don’t you want to be on the right side of history?’ The truth is, I’m more concerned about being on the right side of eternity,” Hall said.
The bill changes state law to specify that marriage is a civil contract between “two persons” rather than “a man and a woman.” It also offers protection for clergy and religious organizations that don’t want to solemnize gay marriages, which supporters argue is the strongest in the nation.
Opponents of same-sex marriage argue that those religious protections don’t go far enough. Private businesses, public officials and nonprofits that disagree wouldn’t be able to refuse service if they had religious objections to gay marriage. That means marriage counselors or wedding photographers would have to take on clients, regardless of their religious viewpoints, said Republican Sen. Paul Gazelka of Nisswa. He offered an amendment that would protect religious entities, not just those affiliated with churches, from the new law.
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Last year, the city condemned the phrase Israeli apartheid while also granting Pride $123,807 irrespective of QuAIA and the group marched
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The Occupied West Bank has held its first official marathon, which organisers say highlight the limits on where Palestinians can travel.
An estimated 500 competitors from 23 different countries participated in the race, but 14 runners from Gaza were prevented to run by Israel.
Because of Israel’s separation barrier, whichcutsoff parts of the city, and its control over nearby land, there is not enough space to do a straight 42km run.
Instead, participants ran 10km out and 10km back repeatedly until the marathon distance was covered.
Al Jazeera’s Caitlin McGee reports.
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