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2004

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August 21, 2004 New Orleans, LA - State judge rules proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages and civil unions unconstitutional and must be taken off the September 18 ballot.

August 13, 2004 CA - California Supreme Court rules San Francisco mayor overstepped his authority by issuing licenses to gay and lesbian couples voiding thousands of marriages sanctioned in San Francisco earlier this year.
May 17, 2004 Boston, MA - Same-sex couples began exchanging wedding vows, marking the first time a state has granted gays and lesbians the right to marry.

April 8, 2004 Albany, NY - American Civil Liberties Union files lawsuit seeking marriage equality for 13 same-sex couples in attempt to end gay and lesbian "stigma of inferiority."

The couples, including State Assemblyman Danny O'Donnell, are urging the State of New York and the New York Department of Health to ensure "that the basic rights of being a New Yorker and an American are extended to all, and to do so most particularly when the political branches lack the will to act."

The complaint states that a denial of same-sex marriage violates the New York State Constitution's guarantee of equal treatment. However, it falls short of criticizing the state for a history of discrimination against gays and lesbians.

March 3, 2004 Portland, OR - Multnomah County, Oregon's most populous county, grants marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples after county attorney said refusing to do so is unconstitutional.

February 24, 2004 Washington, DC - Top Democrats excoriate President Bush for announcing support for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, accusing him of using the issue for political gain and trying to draw attention away from his record.

January 30, 2004 New York, NY - "The L Word", a weekly cable series spotlighting the lives of LA lesbians, has already received a renewal from Showtime for a second season only 11 days after its premier.
January 21, 2004 Washington DC - President Bush states: "our nation must defend the sanctity of marriage" thus opposing gay and lesbian marriage during state of union address.
January 7, 2004 San Francisco, CA - San Jose school district to pay $1.1 million settling lawsuit of six gay students subjected to beatings, death threats and other harassment.

November 18, 2003 Boston, MA - Boston Supreme Court rules in lawsuit brought by gay and lesbian couples seeking the right to marry in Massachusetts that the state of Massachusetts may not "deny the protections, benefits and obligations conferred by civil marriage to two individuals of the same sex who wish to marry."
July 26, 2003 LONDON, England - Europe's largest GLBT pride festival led by uniformed police officers for the first time.
June 29, 2003 Kolkata, India - 35 Gay men, many wearing earrings and bright lipstick, marched in a rare rally they called "Walk on the Rainbow" to promote rights for sexual minorities in conservative India.  Some held up a large rainbow-colored flag, a symbol used by international homosexual movements, while others threw flower petals at bemused bystanders.
June 26, 2003 Washington, DC - The Supreme Court, in a 6-3 decision reversing ruling 17 years ago, strikes down Texas state law banning private consensual sex between adults of the same sex in a decision gay rights groups hailed as historic.
June 20, 2003 NY, NY- New York teenager, 14-year-old Natalie Young is openly lesbian, alleges school violated her civil rights when they suspended her from school for wearing a "Barbie is a Lesbian" T-shirt.
June 12, 2003 Philadelphia, PA - Philadelphia's Boy Scout council, which defied the national organization last month by promising not to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, has ousted a Scout, Gregory Lattera, 18, for publicly announcing he is gay. The same council, the nation's third largest, voted May 28 to add sexual orientation to its nondiscrimination policy.
June 11, 2003 Toronto, Canada - An appeals court ruled that Canada's ban on homosexual marriage was unconstitutional and hours later Michael Leshner and Michael Stark wed Tuesday in a civil ceremony observed by Leshner's 90-year-old mother and about 50 friends in the country's first legal same-sex wedding.
June 7, 2003 Concord, NH - New Hampshire Episcopalians elected first openly gay bishop, the Rev. Canon V. Gene Robinson, receiving 58 of 77 votes from members of the clergy and 96 of 165 votes from laypeople. A majority in each group is needed for election.
May 1, 2003 Washington, DC - U.S Senators today compared hate crimes to terrorist acts and called for laws that would expand federal penalties for acts of violence against homosexuals.
January 10, 2003 Nashville, TN - Southern Baptist Convention threatens moving 2005 annual meeting from hometown Nashville over city's plan to add sexual orientation to classes protected from job and housing discrimination.
January 8, 2003 Key West, FL - Key West City Commission votes unanimously to amend local nondiscrimination law to include transgender people.
 
Bibliography:
  • Lavender Lists, Fletcher/Saks, Alyson Publications, (1990) ISBN 1-55583-182-6
  • Gay American History, Katz, Meridian / Penguin Books, (1976) ISBN 0-45-01092-6
  • The Gay Book of Lists, Rutledge, Alyson Publications, (1987) ISBN 1-55583-120-6
  • Hidden From History, Duberman / Vicinus / Chauncey, Meridian / Penguin Books, (1989) ISBN 0-452-01067-5
  • Alyson Almanac, Alyson Publications (1989) ISBN 1-55583-019-6
  • The Gay Decades, Rutledge, Plume Books, (1992) ISBN 0-452-26810-9
  • The Lesbian Almanac, National Museum and Archive of Lesbian and Gay History, Berkley Books, (1996) ISBN 0-425-15301-0
  • Lesbian Lists, Richards, Alyson Publications, (1990) ISBN 1-55583-163-X
  • The Women's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets, Walker, Harper and Row, (1983) ISBN 0-06-250926-8
  • Wild Women:  Crusaders, Curmudgeons and Completely Corsetless Ladies in the Otherwise Virtuous Victorian Era, Stephens, Autumn, Berkeley, CA:  Conari Press, p. 193.
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Related Links:

ONE Institute International Gay & Lesbian Archives
Gerber/Hart Library
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Library/Archives of Philadelphia
Women's History: A Todd Library Research Guide
Diotima: Women & Gender in the Ancient World
Richard's Gay History, Culture, Writings
Gays, Lesbians and Bisexuals in History
History/Herstory
GLAAD's Lesbian & Gay History Month Test

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