Ceara Sturgis in 2009 wore a tuxedo for her 2010 high school yearbook senior photo (image, right.) School officials in her home state of Mississippi didn’t like that so they simply didn’t include her in the yearbook. Don’t like lesbians? Hide them from the public. Sturgis is now holding a commitment ceremony — Mississippi doesn’t allow same-sex marriage — and wanted to use a local museum for the event, after attending a wedding there. State officials at the Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Museum said no, becauseÂ Â a commitment ceremony is like a wedding — andÂ Mississippi doesn’t allow same-sex marriage. SoÂ Mississippi officials are trying once again to hide Sturgis from the public and deny her her rights.
The concept that something is illegal because it is like something that is illegal is illogical at best and absolutely wrong in this case. Fortunately, the Southern Poverty Law Center is representingÂ Ceara Sturgis and her partner,Â Emily Key, and have given the museum until July 25 to concede.
Noting the “state-owned museum refused to allow a similar ceremony for two men earlier this year,” Fox News of course published an antigay article titled, “Lesbian demands ceremony at Mississippi museum.”
The museum has said it interprets commitment ceremonies to represent a union and cites a 2009 opinion by Attorney General Jim Hood saying it could decline such ceremonies because same-sex marriage is banned in Mississippi.
The SPLC is not challenging Mississippi’s ban on same-sex marriage, but says the museum should allow commitment and marriage ceremonies to take place even if the couple won’t be recognized under state law.
“The Museum’s policy is premised on a misguided and erroneous interpretation of Mississippi state law and, further, violates the United States Constitution. We intend to challenge the Museum’s policy in federal court if the Museum does not rescind its policy against same-sex commitment and marriage ceremonies and honor our clients’ request,” the letter said.
Sturgis told The Associated Press Thursday that she went to a friend’s wedding at the museum and liked it, so she thought it would be the right place for her and Key to publically profess their love. She said they’re not asking the state to recognize them as a married couple, but they just want to be able to rent the venue for a celebration like a heterosexual couple could.
“Emily and I just want to have the same fair treatment as everyone else. We want to share our love with our friends and family,” Sturgis said.
Zack Ford atÂ Think ProgressÂ notes:
Hoodâ€™s argument fails on its face. If it were true, then it would technically beÂ illegalÂ to have any kind of same-sex wedding or commitment ceremony. There is a difference between not recognizing same-sex unions and declaring them to be unlawful. What Hood seems to have suggested is that Sturgis and Key could be arrested simply by declaring their love for each other in front of their family and friends, which would obviously violate their right to free speech and expression. Given the growing number of religious denominations that recognize marriage equality, such a precedent would also be a clear violation of religious freedom.
For the state of Mississippi to declare that a same-sex commitment ceremony is unlawful behavior is an egregious attack on gay community and its personal liberties. Itâ€™s nothing more than a pathetic excuse for blatant anti-gay discrimination.
The American Family Association’s One New Now also published an article, quoting Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver:
“Now they’re being threatened by the Southern Poverty Law Center [SPLC], which is an organization that supports radical homosexual agenda items,” [Staver] reports. “This particular situation, I think, is one where in Mississippi, same-sex marriage is not recognized. And so it would be impermissible, I think, completely wrong to use government facilities to recognize something that is absolutely banned in the state of Mississippi.”
But Staver emphasizes that “the agenda of the sexual anarchist movement” is “to put this issue up — homosexuality, lesbianism and whatever the nomenclature of the alphabet may be from day to day — to simply push this into your face and to shove it down the throats of the American people. I believe that this threat of homosexuality and same-sex unions is the biggest threat to our family, to our morality and to our freedom that we face here in America,” the attorney concludes.
As for Mississippi, he believes the state stands on solid ground as it faces the threat of a lawsuit if it does not approve the ceremony by July 25.
Jeremy Hooper at Good As You responds to Staver:
I seriously can’t even comment on this. If you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go join my husband (akaÂ fellow family threatener) at dinner (akaÂ menu-based morality molester), where we we will consume pasta (akaÂ freedomâ€”fouling fusilli) and drink red wine (akaÂ sexual anarchy’s chosen lubricant). Until tomorrow, my dear readers (akaÂ nuclear bombs lying wait to destroy all that is holy).
According to readers, comments at One New NowÂ are being deleted if they criticize Christianity.
Ceara Sturgis won her lawsuit against her high school last year.
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‘I’d Be Advising My Client to Tell Their Family I’m Looking at Jail Time’: Mueller Prosecutor on the FBI’s Trump Raid
Former Justice Department prosecutor Andrew Weissmann, who worked on special counsel Robert Mueller’s team, explained on MSNBC that if he was advising a client facing what former President Donald Trump is, there would be a strong warning.
“If I were Donald Trump’s lawyer right now, thank God I’m not, I would be advising my client to be telling [their] family, ‘I am looking at jail time, and we should make plans accordingly.'”
After House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) threatened Attorney General Merrick Garland, Weissmann said that he should just keep his head down and keep doing his job.
“That is such a palpably false statement, the comment from Mr. McCarthy that he has seen enough,” said Weissmann. “One of the things that none of us has seen is the warrant, an application to the court. It’s very important to remember this was not a break-in, this was not a raid, this was not the attorney general of the United States deciding willy-nilly on his own that he was going to do the search. A court had to approve the search here based on, as you point out Lawrence, evidence. The evidence had to show that there was probable cause of a crime. That is the way our judicial system works, and that is what happened here.”
While McCarthy may want to hold a public hearing of Garland and demand documents, what the Republicans might ultimately end up doing is drawing additional attention to what Trump stole or attempted to destroy.
“I think the thing that I found the most remarkable and I think it’s really worth people really taking a step back, is this does mean the attorney general of the United States did not trust the former president to simply produce the documents voluntarily pursuant to a subpoena,” said Weissmann. “And it was necessary to go via search warrant. Normally, you think that if you order a subpoena to any reputable person they will produce documents. When you issue and obtain a search warrant, it is because you do not trust that the person will actually produce the documents. That means if they had to have evidence of that that led Merrick Garland to take this step. It was bold but certainly approved by the courts.”
He went on to joke that the irony is that, all of a sudden, Kevin McCarthy cares about document preservation.
“The Trump administration pioneered all these different ways of doing it from flushing it down the toilet, to burning it in the White House fireplace,” recalled Weissmann. “Points for creativity, but, all in all, I don’t think I expect a statement from the Justice Department about [McCarthy’s threats].”
See the comments below:
READ: Trump Likens FBI Executing Search Warrant at Mar-a-Lago to ‘Watergate’ in New Statement
The FBI on Monday executed a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago, Donald Trump‘s Florida home. While there are no details yet on what federal agents are investigating, Trump quickly put out a statement in which he decries the “assault.”
“These are dark times for our Nation,” writes Trump, who since becoming president has likened himself to the entire country, at times declaring an attack on him to be an attack on the United States.
He continues, saying, “my beautiful home, Mar-A-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, is currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents.”
“Nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before,” which is true, but no president, possibly except Richard Nixon, has been under criminal investigation before.
“After working and cooperating with the relevant Government agencies, this unannounced raid on my home was not necessary or appropriate,” he claims. Clearly it had ti be approved by the highest levels at not just the FBI – whose director Trump installed – but the Dept. of Justice, likely by Attorney General Merrick Garland or Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco.
“It is prosecutorial misconduct, the weaponization of the Justice System, and an attack by Radical Left Democrats who desperately don’t want me to run for President in 2024, especially based on recent polls, and who will likewise do anything to stop Republicans and Conservatives in the upcoming Midterm Elections.”
“Such an assault could only take place in broken, Third-World Countries,” he claims, using a term that many consider derogatory to developing countries. “Sadly, America has now become one of those Countries, corrupt at a level not seen before. They even broke into my safe! What is the difference between this and Watergate, where operatives broke into the Democrat National Committee? Here, in reverse, Democrats broke into the home of the 45th President of the United States,” Trump falsely claims.
Mother Jones’ David Corn responds to Trump’s “Watergate” comparison.
“Let’s make this simple: the Watergate break-in was a crime conducted by criminals. This raid was conducted by law enforcement officers who are supposed to catch criminals.”
FBI Has Executed a Search Warrant at Mar-a-Lago: ‘My Beautiful Home Is Under Siege’ Trump Says
The FBI has executed a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago, the Florida home to the former president, Donald Trump, several news outlets are reporting.
First to break the news was the publisher of Florida Politics, Peter Schorsch.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation “today executed a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago, two sources confirm to” Florida Politics, he wrote.
“They just left,” one source said.
He adds cautiously: “Not sure what the search warrant was about.”
But minutes later CNN’s Kaitlan Collins reported: “The FBI executed a search warrant today at President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, the former president confirms to CNN in a lengthy statement.”
Schorsch later posted an announcement from Trump:
— Peter Schorsch (@PeterSchorschFL) August 8, 2022
Collins reports that “Trump says the raid was unannounced and adds, ‘They even broke into my safe.'”
Earlier this year former top FBI official Frank Figliuzzi at MSNBC noted a federal grand jury was impaneled to investigate “the handling of 15 boxes of classified White House documents that were squirreled away at Mar-a-Lago.”
There is no current reporting indicating that is why the FBI was at Mar-a-Lago.
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated.
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