1. In her new book Forcing the Spring, investigative reporter Jo Becker tells the behind-the-scenes story of an important chapter in the fight for marriage equality. She embedded with the team that challenged Proposition 8 — the 2008 anti-gay marriage California ballot initiative that called for amending the state constitution to say that the state would only recognize marriage between a man and a woman. 
The strategy of going to the Supreme Court was controversial within the gay community. If the courts weren’t ready for the litigation it could’ve caused a huge set-back, upholding bans like Proposition 8 for years to come: 

"The gay rights community had a strategy going in, they thought that they needed to have 30 states with some form of recognition — whether that be marriage, whether it be civil unions — but they wanted to have 30 states signed on before they went to the federal courts. What was really interesting to me is the echoes of the kind of similar debate that took place in the previous century over the civil rights fights that African Americans waged. There were people who thought, "You’re moving too fast! The courts aren’t ready!" back then."

photo via Huffington Post View in High-Res

    In her new book Forcing the Spring, investigative reporter Jo Becker tells the behind-the-scenes story of an important chapter in the fight for marriage equality. She embedded with the team that challenged Proposition 8 — the 2008 anti-gay marriage California ballot initiative that called for amending the state constitution to say that the state would only recognize marriage between a man and a woman. 

    The strategy of going to the Supreme Court was controversial within the gay community. If the courts weren’t ready for the litigation it could’ve caused a huge set-back, upholding bans like Proposition 8 for years to come: 

    "The gay rights community had a strategy going in, they thought that they needed to have 30 states with some form of recognition — whether that be marriage, whether it be civil unions — but they wanted to have 30 states signed on before they went to the federal courts. What was really interesting to me is the echoes of the kind of similar debate that took place in the previous century over the civil rights fights that African Americans waged. There were people who thought, "You’re moving too fast! The courts aren’t ready!" back then."

    photo via Huffington Post

  2. LGBT

    gay rights

    marriage equality

    proposition 8

    supreme court

    jo becker

  1. In case you missed it, check out the SNL Weekend Update with Kate McKinnon as tennis legend Billie Jean King. King was a pioneer for women’s athletics, the founder of the Women’s Tennis Association, and is openly gay.  President Obama selected King for the U.S. delegation at the 2014 Sochi Olympics as part of his response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay propaganda law. 
Dave Davies spoke to King this year about women’s athletics, winning “The Battle of the Sexes,” and being outed as gay by her assistant. View in High-Res

    In case you missed it, check out the SNL Weekend Update with Kate McKinnon as tennis legend Billie Jean King. King was a pioneer for women’s athletics, the founder of the Women’s Tennis Association, and is openly gay.  President Obama selected King for the U.S. delegation at the 2014 Sochi Olympics as part of his response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay propaganda law.

    Dave Davies spoke to King this year about women’s athletics, winning “The Battle of the Sexes,” and being outed as gay by her assistant.

  2. fresh air

    billie jean king

    tennis

    saturday night live

    kate mckinnon

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  1. Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal church, on delivering the benediction at the pre-inaugural event at President Obama’s 2009 inauguration. Evangelical pastor Rick Warren gave the inaugural benediction.:


I was so honored to be asked by him to offer the invocation at the Lincoln Memorial. In some ways, it was so profoundly moving for me to be standing in the place where Dr. King delivered the “I Have A Dream” speech, where Marion Anderson sang and with Lincoln’s words behind me,  you know, I didn’t care who else was praying. I was just so blessed to be asked. But it does matter. It does matter.


Image of Marion Anderson at the Lincoln Memorial via Wikicommons View in High-Res

    Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal church, on delivering the benediction at the pre-inaugural event at President Obama’s 2009 inauguration. Evangelical pastor Rick Warren gave the inaugural benediction.:

    I was so honored to be asked by him to offer the invocation at the Lincoln Memorial. In some ways, it was so profoundly moving for me to be standing in the place where Dr. King delivered the “I Have A Dream” speech, where Marion Anderson sang and with Lincoln’s words behind me, you know, I didn’t care who else was praying. I was just so blessed to be asked. But it does matter. It does matter.

    Image of Marion Anderson at the Lincoln Memorial via Wikicommons

  2. Fresh Air

    Interviews

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  1. I’ve been a real loud active voice in the movement to get marriage equality. And I had gone up the month before to Albany, when they were days away from that historic vote, to rally and to see who I could talk to, and just be another face out there saying let’s do the right thing here. … I had read a beautiful story in The New York Times about the couple who were getting married, and that Mayor Bloomberg was going to preside over their wedding at Gracie Mansion. And my friend called me and said, ‘They’d love to have you come and sing.’ And I was floored. I was so honored. And I cried like a baby at that ceremony. And I brought my daughter. And it was a very moving moment and a very teachable moment having my daughter there. And as far as she was concerned, it was just another wedding. She doesn’t really see the issue, which is great. So that’s how it came about. It was a beautiful day.

    — Audra McDonald on performing at the first legal gay wedding in New York City

  2. Audra McDonald

    gay rights

    marriage equality