Friday, June 27, 2014

Update: Boulder County - Doing what is right and just against institutionalized bigotry

Boulder, aka,  The People's Republic of Boulder (the name apropos once again) is standing firm.

The Court's ruling states that Utah's ban on gay marriage violates the Constitutional guaranty of equal protection and due process; that gay couples have a fundamental right to marry. The territorial jurisdiction of the Tenth Circuit includes the six states of Oklahoma, Kansas (I am sure Brownbeck, et al, are apoplectic), New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah, (plus those portions of the Yellowstone National Park extending into Montana and Idaho).

That "Stay" doesn't matter to Boulder County's Clerk and Recorder.  She announced Wednesday afternoon, they were open for business and Boulder County would be issuing licenses to same-sex couples starting immediately.  Within that last hour of business, two such licenses were issued....

Michelle and Wendy Alfredsen with their son Oliver kiss after getting their marriage license 
at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorders Office in Boulder Wednesday June 25, 2014. 
Photo by Paul Aiken / The Daily Camera

In a statement Wednesday, Ms. Hall stated, "I believe the opinion is clear and it is important to act immediately," Hall wrote in a statement handed out at the clerk's office. "... Unless a court in Colorado or the U.S. Supreme Court tells me otherwise, I plan to begin issuing licenses."

Angie Holley, left, and Bylo Farmer kiss after receiving their marriage license
at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder's Office
in Boulder on Thursday, June 26, 2014. (
Cliff Grassmick / Daily Camera)

On Thursday, more were issued, including one to Colorado State Senator Jessie Ulibarri, District 21 in Adams County, and his Life Partner, Luis Trujillo...

Attorney General John Suthers says they are invalid.

From Reuters:
A left-leaning Colorado county defiantly issued marriage licenses to gay couples on Thursday, emboldened by a landmark decision by a regional appeals court that found in favor of same-sex marriage in neighboring Utah.

The move appeared to set up a showdown between the elected clerk of Boulder County and Colorado's Republican attorney general, who warned that such nuptials would be invalid in the absence of a final judicial resolution....

.....At issue now in Boulder is whether the stay of the 10th Circuit's ruling applies to all the region's states, or only Utah.
Should the state attorney general take action to halt the marriages, he could be in for a tough fight, according to Jennifer Hendricks, a family and constitutional law expert at the University of Colorado.

She said it was hard to know if a judge could be found who would rule against a decision of the 10th Circuit that is likely headed to the Supreme Court, even with that decision stayed.
"There'd certainly be lots of questions about Colorado state law in terms of who has authority to do things like issue marriage licenses," she said.

John Suthers remains thoroughly stuck on the wrong side of history...

Today, Boulder County is still issuing licenses in Boulder and, now, in Longmont and in Lafayette. As for Denver County, home of the City of Denver and the State Capitol, according to The Daily Camera:

William Porter, a spokesman from the office of Denver Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson, was on hand Thursday to help "show solidarity." He said his office will not be issuing licenses to same-sex couples for the time being but intends to do so "as soon as legally possible."
"Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson stands with the 10th Circuit Court, with Boulder County and with Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall," Porter said. "We look forward to the day we can issue marriage licenses to all loving couples in Colorado."

In other words, Denver County remains safely sitting on the fence cheering on those who are standing for true justice and freedom.

The question of whether or not marriage between same-sex couples is legal should be moot - The Constitution makes no stipulation as to who can and cannot marry.  

Any distinction made between straight and gay, straight and lesbian, straight and bi-sexual, or transgender, or any other orientation, doesn't even exist in that document.  The only distinction is solely in the limited mind set of individuals who cannot grow out of their own willful ignorance and fear and the inadequate attempts to limit real freedom, human rights and civil rights by pushing Constitutionally abhorrent laws into place in direct violation of that Constitution;  A distinction made only because of the institutionalized bigotry perpetuated by those abhorrent laws put into place in direct violation of that Constitution.

This nation either believes in its Constitution or it doesn't - there are no gray areas.  If we truly believe that the Constitution is sacrosanct, then same-sex marriage is already the law of the land.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Boulder CO begins issuing Marriage Licenses to Same Sex couples after historic court ruling

Michelle and Wendy Alfredsen with their son Oliver kiss after getting their marriage license at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorders Office in Boulder Wednesday June 25, 2014.  Photo by Paul Aiken / The Daily Camera
Michelle and Wendy Alfredsen with their son Oliver kiss after getting their marriage license 
at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorders Office in Boulder Wednesday June 25, 2014. 
Photo by Paul Aiken / The Daily Camera

Boulder is trying to lead the charge for same-sex marriage in Colorado.  Within a few hours  of the 10th Circuit Court' issuance of an historic ruling in favor of gay marriage,  Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall announced that Boulder would begin issuing Marriage licenses to same-sex couples immediately.  Two licenses were issued before the office closed for the day today.

Lafayette and Longmont announced they will start issuing the licenses on Friday.

In May, 2013, Colorado became the 6th state in the nation to approve same-sex Civil Unions.  At 12:01 a.m., on the day the law went into effect, hundreds of couples were joined together in Civil Union, in Denver, as Mayor Michael Hancock and U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Denver, along with judges and religious leaders officiated the ceremonies on the steps of the Wellington Webb Building, part of the City and County of Denver Complex.

With that ruling, the court issued a stay until the matter could be addressed by the Supreme Court - Boulder County apparently, is ignoring that stay and the Colorado AG.  The AG, John Suthers, Republican, (known for his close - uh, very, very close - association with and  large campaign contributions from PayDay Lending corporations, as well as his support and assistance of a large Colorado voter purge of tens of thousands of voters from the rolls in 2010, committed by then CO Secretary of State,  Mike Coffman, now Tea Party darlin' and xenophobic Birther US Representative Mike Coffman, R- CO Dist 6, and husband to Cynthia H. Coffman, Chief Deputy Attorney General of CO and True the Vote front fool),  says the licenses are not valid, stating, "Colorado's constitutional prohibition on same-sex marriages remains in effect."   Of course he does.

Boulder County says they will continue to issue the licenses..

According to "The Daily Camera""

Hall [Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall ] announced shortly after 3:30 p.m. that she would begin issuing licenses; the office was opened until 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, and will reopen at 8 a.m. Thursday.

Hall said Wednesday afternoon that the Boulder County Attorney's Office told her that the stay of the 10th Circuit ruling applies only to Utah, while the opinion itself about the unconstitutionality of such bans applies to Colorado.

"We think their opinion on the law was very clear," Hall said. "We've been following this closely, and were waiting to see what the ruling would be."

Hall said she implemented the new policy immediately because Colorado "has treated our families and friends and coworkers like second-class citizens too long....."

............In a statement handed out this afternoon at the clerk's office, Hall said: "I am relying on the 10th Circuit's statement that marriage is a fundamental right. Because the Court stayed its mandate, officials in Utah will not have to implement the decision immediately. Even so, I believe the opinion is clear and it is important to act immediately. ... Unless a Court in Colorado or the U.S. Supreme Court tells me otherwise, I plan to begin issuing licenses."

Hall said in a news release that the action was in response to the 10th Circuit U.S. Appellate Court ruling earlier in the day that Utah's ban on same-sex marriage violates the U.S. Constitution's guarantees of equal protection and due process.
This is not the first time Boulder County has issued marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In 1975, Boulder County Clerk Clela Rorex issued a half dozen licenses before the CO AG stopped her.

Boulder - The People's Republic of Boulder - still pissing off the up-tight, Neanderthal establishment whenever they can....

Cross-posted on FreakOutNation

Sunday, June 22, 2014

I love a Parade: Denver PrideFest 2014

Aerial view over Civic Center Park, Saturday, June 21, 2014

Denver's PrideFest is still one of the oldest festivals celebrating GLBT (or LGBT, depending on which part of the country one is from)....

The festival has spilled out of  Cheesman Park - the home of the original Pride celebrations and long known as the unofficial base for the GLBT Movement of Denver - and now fills the mainstream  Civic Center Park, across from the Colorado State Capitol.  Every year growing by leaps and bounds, twirls and swirls and dancing in the streets...

Today's Parade, like every PrideFest parade, started in the center of Cheesman Park, exiting out to the City streets, through the Cheesman Park neighborhood on Capitol Hill,

For those familiar with Denver, Capitol Hill, and its Cheesman Park neighborhood filled with 150 year old stone and brick manses, Denver Squares and mid 20th century apartment buildings, was once home to Colorado's most elite - the homes here, are more commonly known by their names, not their street address, from the Molly Brown (yeah, the unsinkable one) to the Tears McFarland (the home now acts as a community center and hosts parties,weddings and events), to the Doyle-Benton to the Patterson.

This day, Capitol Hill and Cheesman Park were filled with rainbows......
All manner of rainbows - banners, balloons, face paint and clothing....

The 2014 PrideFest Parade:

My new friend, Andrew
My old friends Charlie and Brian with the Mile High Freedom Band

And Fire Departments

And of course, it is an election year

Sorry Comgen - This is the TECH GOD - My friend Dallas

Dads with their kids

Yeah, we were dancin' and singin' and movin' to the groovin'
And just when it hit me somebody turned around and shouted
Play that funky music white girl
Play that funky music right
Play that funky music white girl
Lay down the boogie and play that funky music till you die
Till you die