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The Australian: Federal Labor has blasted Tony Abbott for describing the campaign to legalise same-sex marriage as the “fashion of the moment”.
BBC: The BBC will broadcast a reality-style children’s programme on a gay couple preparing for their civil partnership ceremony. The show has been re-named for the edition, and will be called Marrying Dad and Dad instead of Marrying Mum and Dad.
CNSNews: The final installment of a federal grant worth over $2 million has been awarded by the National Institutes of Health to a researcher studying how cultural stigmas affect the sexual behavior of homosexual men in China.
NY Daily News: The Rajya Sabha Tuesday passed a bill which makes it mandatory to register all marriages, irrespective of religion.
Guardian: Labor is hoping to use social media and the digital world to build momentum for change on gay marriage and force Tony Abbott into allowing a conscience vote on the issue.
Guardian: In Sunday night’s debate the prime minister, Kevin Rudd, announced that a re-elected Labor government would introduce a same sex marriage bill in its first 100 days of governing.
Buzz Feed: A recent ruling by Mexico’s Supreme Court said that state laws restricting marriage to a man and a woman violated the country’s constitution, but Mexico’s complicated legal system means couples still have to sue to marry.
Catholic World News: The bishops of the ecclesiastical province of Ibadan, which is located in southwestern Nigeria, warned against attempts to legalize same-sex marriage.
AP: The law on “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations among minors” was signed into law by President Vladimir Putin on July 29.
US News and World Report: Mizulina’s committee has been responsible for a score of laws and projects promoting traditional Russian values and warning of Russia’s moral and demographic decline, as persistently low birthrates have resulted in a shrinking and aging population. Mizulina proposes to fight this in part by fighting gay relationships and taxing divorce.
Legal Insurrection: I’ll have to leave the next questions to the immigration law experts: Would the Romeikes have been better off under the Gang of 8 bill and/or Obama administrative policy if they did not apply for asylum, which is a legal route to permanent residency, but instead came here illegally?
Christian Institute: Figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show a sharp rise in the number of so called “silver splitter” divorces.
AP: The International Olympic Committee is waiting for the Russian government to clarify the anti-gay law that is overshadowing preparations for the Sochi Games.
AP: A court in the northeastern state of Pernambuco has ordered Brazil’s Army for the first time to recognize a same-sex civil union between a sergeant and his companion .
China Post: In what was hailed as a “benchmark” ruling, Taiwan’s Ministry of the Interior on Wednesday decided that the marriage status of Abbygail Wu, 27, and her 29-year-old partner Jiyi Wu remained legal.
S. Michael Craven at Battle for Truth: While these latter measures are no doubt draconian, they nonetheless represent a growing realization within Russian society, namely: sexual anarchy has proven devastating to the future of their civilization. Following the collapse of communism, Russia’s fertility rate had fallen to a catastrophic low of 1.17 births to every woman of child-bearing age by 1999, far below the minimum replacement rate of 2.1 required to maintain population stability.
The Christian Institute: Plans to appoint a state guardian for every child in Scotland have been branded “sinister” and may even be unlawful.
Education News: More than a quarter (28%) of 1,000 UK parents questioned feared being judged by neighbours if they let their children play unsupervised outdoors. Almost a third (32%) believed allowing their children to play ball games or make noise outdoors would cause problems with other residents.
Washington Post: But some girls who grow up in Egypt’s poor rural communities face an even scarier sort of child marriage: the temporary kind. Sex tourism to Egypt tends to spike in the summer, when wealthy men from Gulf countries flood into Egypt and thousands of underage girls are sold by their parents into temporary “marriages,” according to a story by Inter Press Service.
Ken Blackwell at Christian Post: Still, the Royal Family’s crest gives us a hint of deeper meaning: Dieu et Mon Droit-God and My Right-is often translated as a justification for the Divine Right of Kings. Whether we accept monarchy or not, and I don’t, it is nonetheless clear that the British Monarchy rests on family and family is defined by blood, marriage, and adoption.
Bradley Miller at Public Discourse: TWU, like many other religious educational institutions, fosters a distinctively religious community by requiring its students to abide by a “community covenant agreement.” The agreement covers many different behaviors and proscribes, for example, the use of alcohol and pornography on campus. But what has alarmed the Canadian legal education establishment is the requirement that students agree to abstain “from sexual intimacy that violates the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman.”
France24.com: A court in France’s western city of Nantes has granted the biological father of a lesbian couple’s child visiting rights, raising uneasy questions about how to share parental rights between gay partners and biological parents.
WorldNetDaily: Not fully satisfied with the British government’s approval of same-sex marriage, a homosexual duo in Britain has decided to go to court to force churches to perform “gay wedding” ceremonies.
Zenit: “It remains my hope and prayer that in time, by Gods grace and by our gentle love and witness, we will recall society to the path of authentic humanism”
C-FAM: The UN human rights office has launched a media campaign promoting homosexual and transgender rights. The yearlong initiative, funded by outside sources, raises questions over the use of UN offices for what some governments will consider propaganda.
World Magazine: “Instead of going through the regular process to change the law, they want to go out and find judges who will invent rights that support their political agenda,” Martin Cothran, senior policy analyst for the Kentucky Family Foundation, told Citizen Link. Cothran was also a lead lobbyist for the 2004 Kentucky Marriage Protection Amendment. “They now want the courts to find a right to same-sex marriage that’s been somehow hidden in the Constitution for almost 250 years and that nobody noticed before. We can imagine what the Founders would have said about this, and it isn’t pretty.”
Huffington Post (includes video): The findings of a Parliamentary Inquiry released last Friday hold exciting news for same-sex couples in Australia: New South Wales (NSW) could become the first state in the country with the political power to legalize gay marriage. The report itself found that NSW has the power to introduce its own law, given that the bill can sustain the political process within both the Upper and Lower Houses of state-level parliament.
Wall Street Journal: Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York echoed the pope on Monday, saying a priest’s homosexuality “wouldn’t matter to me as long as one is leading a virtuous and chaste life.” But, he added, “My worry is that we’re buying into the vocabulary that one’s person is one’s sexual identity and I don’t buy that and neither does the church.”
CNSNews: Stepped-up efforts by the U.S. and British governments to promote homosexual rights abroad are risking a backlash in conservative countries, where critics say the West is trying to impose norms that clash with local tradition, religion and culture.
Pravda: State Duma Deputy Yelena Mizulina intends to make further amendments to the Law “On the Protection of Children.” The chairwoman of the Committee on Family, Women and Children put forward a suggestion to punish people for using dirty language in social networks.
AP: “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” Francis asked. “We shouldn’t marginalize people for this. They must be integrated into society.”
BBC: He was responding to questions about whether there was a “gay lobby” in the Vatican. “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge them?”
Christian Concern: The Oxford English Dictionary has said that the definition of the term ‘marriage’ will be changed to include same sex couples.
AP: Called Free & Equal, it’s an unprecedented effort by the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights to change public attitudes around the world on issues that have bitterly divided the U.N.’s own member states.
C-FAM: Eastern European countries are following Russia’s lead to protect children by curbing advocacy for “non-traditional” sexual acts. Homosexual groups are reacting furiously.
Global Post: A Malaysian court on Thursday ruled against the 2009 conversion of three Hindu children to Islam without their mother’s knowledge, a verdict welcomed by non-Muslim groups.
Telegraph: Mr Cameron told guests at the same reception one year on that Britain was now “the best place to be gay, lesbian or transgender anywhere in Europe”. He added: “That is a great achievement. That’s not my measure; that is an internationally recognised measure. But there’s still a lot more work to be done.”
Catholic Herald: An item in the Telegraph for 21 July has caught my attention. It concerns advice given to Sikh temples as a consequence of the new law on same-sex marriage. It seems that these temples have been advised by their own advisory body “to halt all civil marriage ceremonies on their premises to protect them from possible legal challenges for refusing to conduct same-sex weddings.” It is the first religious group to consider this course of action.
Christian Institute: The Prime Minister says he does not support a ban on topless images of women in the Sun newspaper – believing it is up to consumers, not regulators, to decide. A group campaigning against Page 3 criticised David Cameron, saying the pictures are “damaging for women”.
Would European Court Override Conscience Protections In British Same-Sex Marriage Law? Sikhs Fear So.
Religion Clause Blog: The Telegraph reported this week that in Britain the advisory group Sikhs In England has suggested to Sikh gurdwaras that they deregister themselves as venues for civil weddings to avoid possible legal challenges for refusing to conduct same-sex marriages which have recently been legalized in Britain.
AP: Several hundred people shouting “Kill the gays” attacked gay activists and clashed with police on Wednesday in a bid to disrupt the first ever pride event in staunchly conservative Montenegro, which is seeking to improve its human rights record as it bids to join the European Union.
Turtle Bay and Beyond: The European Ombudsman has last week published his conclusions regarding the hosting of a controversial photo-exhibitionpromoting same-sex “marriages”, gay adoption, and similar at the premises of the European Commission in Brussels, with Commission vice-president Viviane Reding having granted her patronage to the event.
Jonah Goldberg at NRO: I understand that we are in a very libertarian moment. I myself have become far more sympathetic to libertarianism over the years. But I just can’t get as worked up about David Cameron’s porn crackdown as Charlie can.
Charlie C. Cooke at NRO: In his announcement, the prime minister lamented that the ubiquity of pornography on the Internet is “corroding” Britain’s morality. In response, he proposed to do what British politicians always propose be done when they sense a threat to the righteous: Censor.
Catholic Culture: He warned against the belief that “the only real value is free will, and that no one has the right to violate this value, even when a person chooses evil or a socially dangerous behavior.”
Boston.com: Attorneys for Christian parents who fled Germany in order to home school their children but have been denied U.S. asylum said they are preparing to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case and were working with Congress to try to change asylum law.
Steven Romeo at PolicyMic: The ACLU is helping to spearhead cases in a total of 10 states with federal marriage claims that could make it to the Supreme Court in the coming months, seven of which were already moving down appeals pipelines before the recent rulings. Those states include the very purple state of North Carolina, which could be a gateway to achieving equality in the Deep South . . .
AP: Enraged Nigerians are using petitions, protests and social networks to demand the Senate revisit a constitutional amendment on the age of consent.
Christian Institute: David Cameron has asked web firms to rebrand their safety settings as “default-on” without actually changing how they work.
AP: More than 1,000 people in Haiti participated Friday in a rare street demonstration to protest homosexuality and a proposal to legalize gay marriage in the Caribbean nation.
Global Post: “The International Olympic Committee is clear that sport is a human right and should be available to all regardless of race, sex or sexual orientation,” the statement said. “The Games themselves should be open to all, free of discrimination, and that applies to spectators, officials, media and of course athletes. We would oppose in the strongest terms any move that would jeopardize this principle.”
British Appeals Court Upholds Asylum Denial; Returning Boy To Be Circumcised and Rasied As Muslim Does Not Violate His Rights
Religion Clause Blog: In SS (Malaysia) v. Secretary of State, (EWCA, July 18, 2013), Britain’s Court of Appeal, upheld the denial of asylum to a Roman Catholic woman from Malaysia visiting England and to her 6 year old son. The woman, whose husband (still in Malaysia) had recently converted to Islam, objected to the fact that if she returned her husband would insist their son be raised as a Muslim and circumcised.
Daily Beast: What isn’t included in a vacation package these days? Last year, a Dutch company, aptly named Divorce Hotel, announced plans to spread their message of luxury marital splits to America—and now other companies are following suit. The Dutch business offers a low-rate, all-in-one weekend escape for estranged spouses to settle their differences once and for all. Through partnerships with a variety of hotels in the Netherlands, they bring couples to a high-end retreat for a three-day, paperwork-filled getaway. “We offer you an affordable 5 star divorce made-to-measure,” the website boasts.
AllAfrica (Reuters): A Marriage Bill which seeks to unify Kenya’s various marriage-related laws and customs and strengthen women’s rights in marriage was introduced to parliament on Tuesday and caused uproar among Kenyan men, many saying it is ‘punitive’ and should not become law.
Christian Concern: Mrs Minichiello Williams wrote to the Archbishop of Canterbury – copied to all the Lords Spiritual – asking for an explanation as to why so few of the bishops were present at Report Stage of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.
Boston Globe (AP): The French like to make fun of the British, joking about their repressed ways in matters of the heart. But when it came time to debate same-sex marriage, it was France that betrayed a deep conservative streak in sometimes violent protests — while the British showed themselves to be modern and tolerant.
British House of Commons Gives Final Approval To Same-Sex Marriage; Authorizes Study of Humanist Ceremonies
Religion Clause Blog: In Britain yesterday, the House of Commons approved the House of Lords amendments to the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill (full text of bill), sending the bill to the Queen for Royal Assent– a formality in Britain.
Washington Post: Britain on Wednesday legalized gay marriage after Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal stamp of approval, clearing the way for the first same-sex weddings next summer.
Times of India: The decision of the education department of Madhya Pradesh to introduce a chapter on the Bhagwad Gita in classes XI and XII has triggered a debate among city students on the viability of having religious elements in their syllabus.
LA Times: Through his office window, Philippe Brillault can see the palace of Versailles, where Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette were beset by an angry mob and forced to move to Paris in the beginning days of the French Revolution.
Mirror News: The first same sex weddings will take place in England and Wales in the summer of 2014 after the controversial legislation cleared the House of Lords today.
PressTV: Muslims were especially outraged with the draft and the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), which represents some 500 Islamic institutes in Britain, said it was “deeply disappointed” that the curriculum made no reference to Muslims and Islam.
Bloomberg: The U.K. House of Lords passed Prime Minister David Cameron’s bill to allow same-sex marriage, sending it back to the lower House of Commons for final agreement. The upper, unelected chamber approved the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill without a vote in London today. Some members of the house wore pink carnations to mark the occasion.
BBC: The proportion of children born out of wedlock rose in 2012 for the 40th consecutive year to 47.5%. By 2016 it is expected to rise to more than 50%. Figures from the Office for National Statistics go back to 1938 when just 4% of babies had unmarried parents.
C-FAM: European lawmakers are facing a dilemma following a survey on discrimination and violence against homosexuals in Europe. It is being touted as the “largest and most comprehensive study ever carried out” on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. Nearly 93,000 responses purportedly came from individuals that identified as LGBT. Experts say the survey not only has significant methodological flaws but also does not show a problem of any magnitude.
The Cable: Opposition to President Obama’s nominee for U.S. ambassador to the Dominican Republic reached a fever pitch this week as religious organizers stage a “Lunes Negros” or Black Monday protest against James “Wally” Brewster.
BBC: A major UN child rights protection body has asked the Vatican to disclose details of thousands of paedophilia cases involving Catholic clergy.
CBC.ca: The RCMP have completed their investigation into the polygamous community of Bountiful, B.C., and a special prosecutor is now considering whether sexual exploitation or polygamy charges will be laid.
Telegraph: Children’s books used in primary schools should feature same-sex parents to help teach tolerance among youngsters, according to an academic.
Christian Institute: More than half of grassroots Conservatives are against gay marriage, according to new research. The YouGov poll showed that 59 per cent of ordinary Tory party members are against the Government’s proposals.