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Wedding Bells Ring: Law denies same-sex couples 'fundamental right,' says judge

A three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 Friday, July 18 that the same-sex couples have the right to legally marry in the state.

In his majority in opinion in Bishop v. Smith, Circuit Court Judge Carlos F. Lucero wrote, "... Oklahoma's ban on same-sex marriage sweeps too broadly in that it denies a fundamental right to all same-sex couples who seek to marry or to have their marriages recognized regardless of their child-rearing ambitions. As with opposite-sex couples, members of same-sex couples have a constitutional right to choose against procreation."

However, Lucero noted, "Oklahoma has barred all same-sex couples, regardless of whether they will adopt, bear, or otherwise raise children, from the benefits of marriage while allowing all opposite-sex couples, regardless of their child-rearing decisions, to marry."

According to a statement Friday from Charles Joughin, a spokesman for the national Human Rights Campaign, "The state of Oklahoma now has the option to request an en banc appeal before the full bench of the 10th Circuit, which decides whether or not to grant that request. It may also bypass an en banc session and appeal directly to the U.S. Supreme Court."

In June, the same 10th Circuit panel also struck down Utah's same-sex marriage ban. Utah is expected to appeal that ruling.

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Evan Wolfson, president of the national group Freedom to Marry, stated, "Today's ruling arises out of the oldest active marriage case in the country, filed in Oklahoma 10 years ago; and follows more than two-dozen favorable rulings for marriage in the past year. The legal consensus is clear: marriage discrimination is unconstitutional and inflicts concrete harms on committed gay and lesbian couples and their families. ... It is time for the Supreme Court to end this patchwork of discrimination and bring our country to national resolution as soon as possible."

Since June 2013, when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down California's Proposition 8 same-sex marriage ban on a technicality and essentially killed the Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibited federal recognition of such unions, there have been numerous court rulings favorable to same-sex marriages.

Florida judge overturns marriage ban

A judge in Florida has struck down that state's same-sex marriage ban as unconstitutional, but the ruling currently only applies to the county where the ruling was issued, which includes the Florida Keys, the national group Freedom to Marry says.

Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia, who was appointed by former Governor Jeb Bush, a Republican, made his ruling in Huntsman v. Heavilin Thursday, July 17.

"This court concludes that a citizen's right to marry is a fundamental right that belongs to the individual," Garcia said in his ruling, according to HRC.

State Attorney General Pam Bondi quickly appealed the ruling. In a statement, Bondi spokeswoman Jenn Meale said, "With many similar cases pending throughout the entire country, finality on this constitutional issue must come from the U.S. Supreme Court." The ruling was stayed until at least Wednesday, July 22.

HRC legal director Sarah Warbelow stated Thursday, "Today's court ruling in Florida is further proof that America is ready for marriage equality nationwide. Unfortunately, same-sex couples in a majority of states still don't have the right to marry, creating a confusing patchwork of marriage laws across the country. This is not only unsustainable, but it's also unconstitutional."

Same-sex couples can legally get married in 19 states and the District of Columbia.

Freedom to Marry's Wolfson stated, "Like an unprecedented wave of state and federal courts across the country this past year, Judge Garcia did the right thing in affirming that committed same-sex couples share in the precious constitutional freedom to marry the person we love."

Shannon Minter, legal director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights, also took note of the national progress. In a statement to the Bay Area Reporter, Minter said, "The victories in Florida and Oklahoma show that the momentum for marriage equality is continuing full force, in both state and federal courts, and even in states that until recently have been among the most hostile to LGBT families. Every victory makes ultimate victory in the U.S. Supreme Court more likely."

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07:58 Publié dans wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


DIY Desi Wedding Ideas

Personalised weddings with vintage inspired quirks have become very popular over the past few years, especially in the Asian community.

Do-it-yourself (DIY) weddings are a great way to stay in budget while still being on trend.

DESIblitz have a few unique Desi ideas to make your wedding day one to remember.

Ribbon is a creative girl’s best friend. You can get any colour ribbon cheaply at markets and use them to attach on flowers, baskets and name cards and essentially, everything else to add a cuteness to decoration.

Create personal name cards by printing names on to card and sticking it on a thick piece of ribbon, which you can then wrap into a bow and place on the table. This adorable tip will save you the pennies, but does require a few hours of concentration.

Alternatively, use ribbon to create colourful edges to any baskets you use. Make mini bows to attach all the way around the basket for effect.

DIY Desi Wedding Ideas


Lighting can create a romantic ambience. If you don’t want a candle flame on the table, opt for LED candles that give the same warm glow without the worry.

If you or anyone you know has a steady hand and a creative flare, get them to personalise candles with the couples names and wedding date as a cute accompaniment to the centre pieces.

For added emphasis, strap a table with twinkly bright fairy lights, such as the guest book table, for an extra wow factor.

Invitations and save the dates can be a large money grabbing element of the wedding planning, but you can save yourself the printing costs by creating your own heart shaped save the dates.

Gather a template online or use software such as Adobe Photoshop or even Microsoft Publisher and print them as the basis for your save the dates.

Using calligraphy stencils, engrave the names and date onto the template. If you cant do that, then print a smaller slip of paper to glue on. Laminate the heart templates for protection and shine and punch a hole at the top for a ribbon to be tied.

Keep your guests sweet by having a candy stall at the wedding. Head to your nearest sweet shop or even shop on-line in bulk for large jars of sweets.

Some places offer personalised wrapping on jars.

Fill small gift baskets with humbugs and mini chocolates; but remember this is only a supplement to wedding food so you don’t need to go overboard.

Flowers are an integral part of any wedding but they don’t come cheap. The larger the arrangement the bigger the bill, but creating your own floral centre pieces can add a delicate personalised touch and avoid extra expense.

Source a set of small square printed storage boxes and purchase floral foam to layer the box.

Place your chosen arrangements inside. The bouquet inside can be as extravagant as your wish, but if you’re cutting cost on a small wedding, buy flowers from your nearest supermarket a day or two before. The head table can have a large decorative arrangement if you wish.

Having a guest book is a common trend at weddings, but to make it more interesting, have a ‘memories’ table with photo montages hung on the wall or framed pictures on the desk.

Place a stack of mini coloured card on a table for guests to write their personal messages.

Later use these to create a collage or attach them using pegs or tape to a small artificial tree that can sit in your home.

Guests like to know the structure of the day, so hand out personalised schedules highlighting the entrance, food, dancing and the end.

You can create anything using editing software; print the schedules on card and cut to a delicate shape of your choice.

Then stick on a patterned colour piece of card to add dimension. Have fun putting your personality into creating these schedules!

Not the cheapest DIY idea, and it will require a creative eye but having a bouquet of chocolate looks so effective.

Use posh chocolates with gold covering such as Fererro Rochers and use sharp flower stems to pinch through delicately. Arrange it however you like, adding coloured tissue paper around the chocolate to fill it out.

Tape it however you wish underneath to make it hold, as long as from the front it looks shimmering, everything else can be covered.

More emphasis is being placed on useful wedding favours guests will enjoy.

Personalised candles and mini shot glasses with thank you tags attached are some ideas of gifts guests will adore.

If you want to stick to food, bag up some cookies and seal with a ribbon.

Even add guests names on bags for that final touch!

Serving up some cocktails on arrival can always make a guests experience enjoyable from the start!

With any fruit of your choice, Alcohol or soda (for non-alcoholic) you can create classy cocktails that have a wow factor.

Don’t be afraid to add some DIY in your wedding! With so many ways to be creative and cut costs, you can add your own personal touches to make your big day special without breaking the bank.

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09:55 Publié dans wedding | Tags : wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


At the ESPYs red carpet, it's a mix of bling, sweat and cheers

So much of life is plain ugly (cell towers made to look like trees) or vaporous (Masahiro Tanaka's elbow, or that little Italian village I just purchased on eBay).

But then you run across something genuine and serene. Yes, it's the ESPYs I'm talking about.

I'd rather pass a gallstone than wear a full suit in 90-degree heat, yet here I am on the red carpet at ESPN's annual awards show Wednesday night at the Nokia Theatre.

Look, there goes Russell Westbrook in baby blue pajama tops.

Maria Sharapova, Floyd Mayweather Jr.
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Over there, Marcedes Lewis is wearing a kilt/skirt/pantaloon combo (no, you can't get these at Target).

And here comes Kevin Durant in a shade of green usually found only in Jell-O or chem labs. Hey Kev, were they out of cheetah?

The 49ers' Stevie Johnson is wearing glitter shoes and so many necklaces it looks like chain mail.

At the ESPYs, bling is the new black.

When did athletes start dressing like Elton John and Lady Gaga? And what would Ted Williams say?

Oh. there's Russell Wilson in a tie and conservative dark suit. What does he think he is, an adult?

Pay attention, Joan Rivers, and I'll show you how to handle a real red carpet.

Me: "Who are you wearing?"

Jermaine Jones: "John Ford."

Me, I'm wearing Chevy.

First impressions? This red carpet is moving slower than an Idina Menzel national anthem.

If you've never been, what happens on these red carpets is this: The participants step directly off their MTA bus -- or whatever they drive -- and enter a tent, where security wands them. The ones who don't pass get to go down the red carpet.

Soon, they pipeline into a crush of stars and publicists and are wearing a sheen seen only in Turtle Wax commercials. Along the way, they stop at various booths, where TV types (who strangely never sweat) ask them about their clothes, careers and upcoming movies.

Then they stop for more photos and interviews. The ones who don't pass out in a puddle of their own gravy are allowed into the Nokia for the show.

A red carpet in July is much like the two-a-days you used to have in high school. Not everybody makes it. Women have given birth in the time it takes to walk this gauntlet.

cCommentsGot something to say? Start the conversation and be the first to comment.ADD A COMMENT0An hour in, I look like the night manager at an iHop in Short Pump, Va. Maria Sharapova either sneaked by me or melted directly into the ESPYs red carpet.

My own winners Wednesday night:

-- Most legendary: Jim Brown

-- Best reception: Members of the U.S. soccer team.

-- Sexiest: Pro surfer Hannah Cornett.

-- Blingiest: Stevie Johnson.

-- Weirdest: Floyd Mayweather Jr.

-- Coolest doctor: Julius Erving.

-- Best moment: When Jim Brown hugged Michael Sam.

-- Best line by TV host Drake: "If CenturyLink Field got any louder, Westbrook would be wearing it."

Yeah, sure it can be unsettling how much we deify these athletes, but they always seem willing to make a mockery of themselves, don't they?

And I don't mean that in a mean-spirited way, only that they take themselves less seriously than the fans often do. Maybe that's a relief.

Really, what these awards salute is ESPN's trademark irreverence. Last thing I'd want is a 24-7 sports network that treated everything as if it were "60 Minutes."

What's left to say about all this? It's a divine excess, really, this giving of awards to people who already are among the most-rewarded people on the planet. The new royalty. We used to have war heroes, and now we have sports stars.

If it all seems specious and vainglorious, so be it. In the end, they're just ballers. If they're overcompensated and a little too worshiped, that's our fault more than theirs.

So give them their night. The ESPYs – now in their 22nd year – have become sports' Tower of Babel.

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08:51 Publié dans beaute, wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)