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Prop 8 battle resumes Sept. 6

Georgians gather to support Prop 8 ruling

The legal battle over California's Proposition 8 will resume in September as the state's high court will take up the issue over whether supporters of a ballot initiative have the authority to fight court rulings if the state's governor and attorney general refuse to do so, according to the Associated Press.

The court will hear arguments on Sept. 6.

U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker ruled in August 2010 that the state's ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. Then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Jerry Brown refused to challenge Walker's ruling.

Jerry Brown is now the governor of California.

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Atlanta NOH8 photos now posted

It's been almost six weeks since the NOH8 campaign made its Atlanta stop. Now the local photos are posted on the N0H8 website.

Adam Bouska and his partner, Jeff Parshley, founded the NOH8 Campaign after voters in California approved Proposition 8, a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, on Nov. 4, 2008. In the photos, celebrities and everyday people don NOH8 tattoos and duct tape over their mouths to protest the silencing effect of homophobia.

The NOH8 campaign has gone on to promote other LGBT equality causes as well. But it’s the photos that people love. The campaign has grown to more than 8,000 “faces” in the past two years. A crowd estimated at over 800 turned out Jan. 16 for the Atlanta shoot, held at the W Midtown hotel on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.

The NOH8 campaign put out an announcement on the release of the photos:

"First of all, a huge thanks to all of you for coming out and supporting the cause during our very first open shoot in Atlanta, in addition to your patience in getting the photos back to you guys - we couldn't believe how many there were to go through! While Chicago still has the highest number for people who came out to the shoot, Atlanta broke the record for largest number of photos taken! We added hundreds of new faces to the campaign and our fight for equality - and that is truly something for you all to be proud of."

Rev. Josh Noblitt of St. Mark United Methodist, an organizer of the event, told the crowd of hundreds that it was time for LGBT people and allies to “take their place in the civil rights movement.”

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Prop 8: Cali. Supreme Court to hear arguments on standing

The California Supreme Court will weigh into the Proposition 8 battle after a three judge panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court said it could not rule on the on-going case until it knew whether or not the law's backers had the legal standing to defend the law in court.

A Tweet sent by American Foundation for Equal Rights late this afternoon read: “Calif. Supreme Court to hear #Prop8 case with expedited schedule. Oral arguments as soon as Sept 2011."

Supporters of the marriage ban were challenging a lower court's ruling that struck down the law last August as unconstitutional because it violated equal protection guarantees. State officials, including then Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and former Attorney General Jerry Brown, refused to appeal Judge Vaughn Walker's ruling. A supporters group appealed the ruling after the state refused to do so.

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NOH8 photo campaign visits Atlanta

The popular NOH8 Campaign comes to Atlanta on MLK Day 2011

The photography campaign that has spawned nearly 6,000 photos of celebrities and every day people with duct tape across their mouths and “NOH8” painted on their faces began two years ago in an L.A. apartment at about 3 a.m.

Photographer Adam Bouska and his partner, Jeff Parshley, were devastated when California voters approved Prop 8, a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, in the November 2008 election. The two men felt silenced in their home state and wanted to do something to protest Prop 8.

“It was natural we come up with a plan to use photographs … this was on everyone’s mind and we were looking for ways to get involved,” Bouska said in an interview from his L.A. home as he prepares for a Jan. 16 NOH8 photo shoot in Atlanta.

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Federal appeals panel wants ruling on who can fight for Prop 8

Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger refused to defend Prop 8 in court

A 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel surprised many Proposition 8 observers Jan. 4 when it suddenly issued five documents relating to the case.

But there was no decision in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, the landmark case testing whether voters in California violated the U.S. Constitution when they amended the state constitution to ban marriage licenses for same-sex couples.

The bottom line of the documents was that the three-judge panel that heard arguments in an appeal of the case punted a critical question regarding legal standing to the California Supreme Court.

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Federal judges send Prop 8 back to Calif. Supreme Court

A three-judge panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals announced today that the federal court will not determine the constitutionality of California’s ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8, before the court knows whether or not the law’s backers have the legal right to defend the ban.

According to the Associated Press:

In a brief order filed Tuesday, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals asked the California Supreme Court to decide if the backers of ballot propositions can step in to defend voter-approved measures in court when state officials refuse to do so.

Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and former Attorney General Jerry Brown refused to appeal a lower court’s ruling that Prop 8 violated the civil rights of LGBT Californians. Backers of the ban stepped in to defend the district court's ruling before the 9th Circuit, who will now defer the issue to the state's Supreme Court.

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‘Traditional marriage’ group wants Christians to reclaim rainbow symbol from ‘gay lobby’

Christian group aims to reclaim the rainbow symbol

Well, this is just rich. An anti-gay group wants Christians to reclaim the rainbow from the queers because the rainbow symbolizes God's covenant with man. And we all know God doesn't like the gays, especially if we fly a rainbow flag on our front stoop.

In an interview with One News Now, a division of the American Family Network, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, founder and president of the Ruth Institute — a project of the National Organization for Marriage, which was recently named a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center — says supporters of Prop 8, the ones who voted to make gay marriage illegal in California in 2008, are the original "rainbow coalition."

"Proposition 8 was passed by a great grassroots coalition that included people from all across the religious traditions, and also people of every race and color," Morse said in the interview. "We are the real rainbow coalition. The gay lobby does not own the rainbow."

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Prop 8 lawyer says ‘marriage is most important right’ on ‘Colbert Report’

Last night on “The Colbert Report with Stephen Colbert,” attorney David Boies sat down for an interview with host Stephen Colbert after a segment on the ongoing legal battle over the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8.

Boies, along with attorney Ted Olson, have argued that the state’s same-sex marriage ban violates the constitutional rights of free speech and due process. They represent two sets of plaintiffs suing the state over the ban.

A federal appeals court heard arguments last week after a district judge ruled the ban unconstitutional. The appeals court ruling is expected early in the New Year.

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National anti-gay marriage group claims bias in Prop 8 hearing

The National Organization for Marriage released a statement regarding the federal appeals court hearing on California’s Proposition 8 yesterday, decrying the court panel as biased.

The anti-gay group is up-in-arms over the inclusion of Judge Stephen Reinhardt, whose wife works with the American Civil Liberties Union and has been involved in the case through her role at the ACLU. Reinhardt was one of three judges who sat on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals during yesterday's hearing.

"This hearing makes a mockery of the federal judiciary," said Brian Brown, president of NOM, in an internet posting. "Citizens are entitled to a guarantee of impartiality from their judiciary. Yet here we have the spectacle of a federal appeals court justice ruling on a case in which his wife represents a group that is a participant. A cynic would be left to wonder if the fix is in for marriage in the Ninth Circuit."