In 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could not deny federal benefits of marriage to same sex couples, if the couple was married in a state that allowed the marriage. Some states do not fully recognize same sex marriage, but they do offer civil unions or domestic partnerships, so that the same sex couples can enjoy some of the same rights and benefits of marriage.
The 2018 Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruling regarding the legalisation of same-sex marriage in countries that have ratified the American Convention on Human Rights applies to Ecuador. In May 2018, the Ecuador Supreme Court ruled, in a lesbian parenting case, that the IACHR ruling is fully binding on Ecuador and that the country must also implement the ruling in due course.[391] In June 2018, two family judges ruled the country's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional.[159]. However, the Civil Registry has appealed the rulings, preventing their coming into force.[392]
Li Yinhe, a sociologist and sexologist well known in the Chinese gay community, has tried to legalize same-sex marriage several times, including during the National People's Congress in 2000 and 2004 (Legalization for Same-Sex Marriage 《中国同性婚姻合法化》 in 2000 and the Same-Sex Marriage Bill 《中国同性婚姻提案》 in 2004). According to Chinese law, 35 delegates' signatures are needed to make an issue a bill to be discussed in the Congress. Her efforts failed due to lack of support from the delegates. CPPCC National Committee spokesman Wu Jianmin when asked about Li Yinhe's proposal, said that same-sex marriage was still too "ahead of its time" for China. He argued that same-sex marriage was not recognized even in many Western countries, which are considered much more liberal in social issues than China.[379] This statement is understood as an implication that the Government may consider recognition of same-sex marriage in the long run, but not in the near future.
Since 1888 the US Supreme Court has declared 14 times that marriage is a fundamental right for all, according to the American Foundation for Equal Rights. [3] Article 16 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights guarantees "men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion... the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution." [103] Amnesty International states that "this non-discrimination principle has been interpreted by UN treaty bodies and numerous inter-governmental human rights bodies as prohibiting discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation. Non-discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation has therefore become an internationally recognized principle." [104]
In October 2016, Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines Pantaleon Alvarez announced he will file a civil union bill in Congress.[441] The bill was introduced to Congress in October of the following year under the wing of the House Speaker and three other congresspersons, including Geraldine Roman, the country's first duly-elected transgender lawmaker.[442]
Civil unions and domestic partnerships can provide the protections and benefits gay couples need without changing the definition of marriage. Privileges available to couples in civil unions and domestic partnerships can include health insurance benefits, inheritance without a will, the ability to file state taxes jointly, and hospital visitation rights. [155] [156] 2016 presidential candidate and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina stated that civil unions are adequate as an equivalent to marriage for same-sex couples: "Benefits are being bestowed to gay couples [in civil unions]... I believe we need to respect those who believe that the word marriage has a spiritual foundation... Why can't we respect and tolerate that while at the same time saying government cannot bestow benefits unequally." [157] 43rd US President George W. Bush expressed his support for same-sex civil unions while in office: "I don't think we should deny people rights to a civil union, a legal arrangement, if that's what a state chooses to do so... I strongly believe that marriage ought to be defined as between a union between a man and a woman. Now, having said that, states ought to be able to have the right to pass laws that enable people to be able to have rights like others." [158]

The gay community has created its own vibrant culture. By reducing the differences in opportunities and experiences between gay and heterosexual people, this unique culture may cease to exist. Lesbian activist M.V. Lee Badgett, PhD, Director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, stated that for many gay activists "marriage means adopting heterosexual forms of family and giving up distinctively gay family forms and perhaps even gay and lesbian culture." [14] Paula Ettelbrick, JD, Professor of Law and Women's Studies, wrote in 1989, "Marriage runs contrary to two of the primary goals of the lesbian and gay movement: the affirmation of gay identity and culture and the validation of many forms of relationships." [15]

Nevada 2,839,099 October 7, 2014 October 9, 2014 Federal court decision → legislative statute Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in Sevcik v. Sandoval. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada's ruling.[70] Gender-neutral marriage bill passed by the Nevada Legislature and signed into law by the Governor of Nevada went into effect on July 1, 2017.[71][72]


Armenia has historically had few protections or recognition in law of same-sex couples. This changed in July 2017, when the Ministry of Justice revealed that all marriages performed abroad are valid in Armenia, including marriages between people of the same sex.[365] That made Armenia the second country of the former Soviet Union, after Estonia, to recognise same-sex marriages performed abroad, though it's not clear if the ruling has any practical effect. As of early 2019, "no such recognition has yet been documented."[165]
Australia became the second nation in Oceania to legalise same-sex marriage when the Australian Parliament passed a bill on 7 December 2017.[171] The bill received royal assent on 8 December, and took effect on 9 December 2017.[172][173] The law removed the ban on same-sex marriage which previously existed and followed a voluntary postal survey held from 12 September to 7 November 2017, which returned a 61.6% Yes vote for same-sex marriage.[174] The same legislation also legalised same-sex marriage in all of Australia's external territories.[173]
When talking about bisexuality, it is sometimes useful to distinguish between behavior, attraction, and identity. Someone who has had sexual experience with or even just attractions to people of more than one gendercan be described as bisexual+, but may not identify that way. Likewise, one can identify as bisexual+ regardless of sexual experience. Furthermore, identities can change over time or be used in different contexts, whether personal, community, or political. Definitions can change too.
Masculinization of women and hypermasculinization of men has been a central theme in sexual orientation research. There are several studies suggesting that bisexuals have a high degree of masculinization. LaTorre and Wendenberg (1983) found differing personality characteristics for bisexual, heterosexual and homosexual women. Bisexuals were found to have fewer personal insecurities than heterosexuals and homosexuals. This finding defined bisexuals as self-assured and less likely to suffer from mental instabilities. The confidence of a secure identity consistently translated to more masculinity than other subjects. This study did not explore societal norms, prejudices, or the feminization of homosexual males.[34]
The American Institute of Bisexuality stated that Bailey's study was misinterpreted and misreported by both The New York Times and its critics.[77] In 2011, Bailey and other researchers reported that among men with a history of several romantic and sexual relationships with members of both sexes, high levels of sexual arousal were found in response to both male and female sexual imagery.[78][79] The subjects were recruited from a Craigslist group for men seeking intimacy with both members of a heterosexual couple. The authors said that this change in recruitment strategy was an important difference, but it may not have been a representative sample of bisexual-identified men. They concluded that "bisexual-identified men with bisexual arousal patterns do indeed exist", but could not establish whether such a pattern is typical of bisexual-identified men in general.[79][80]
On February 12, 2018, during the street carnival of São Paulo, thousands of people attended a parade called Love Fest,[38] which celebrated human diversity, sexual and gender equality. A version of the LGBT Flag, created by Estêvão Romane, co-founder of the festival, was unveiled which presented the original 8 stripe LGBT flag with a white stripe in the middle as the 9th stripe, representing all colors (human diversity in terms of religion, gender, sex preferences, ethinicities), and peace and union among all.[39]

State same-sex marriage laws raise the question of whether state parliaments have the power to pass such laws. According to constitutional lawyer, Anne Twomey, the short answer is yes; the more difficult question is whether that law will be effective or whether it will be inoperative because it is inconsistent with a Commonwealth law, namely the Marriage Act. Twomey argues that the answer to this question is unclear and unknowable until the High Court decides. Furthermore, she argues that even if operative, a state marriage law would do little more than facilitate the holding of a ceremony. It might confer on the parties to a same-sex marriage the status of ‘married’ for the purposes of a specific state, but it is most unlikely that the parties would be regarded as legally ‘married’ for the purposes of Commonwealth law, or under the law of any other state. It would therefore not attract any legal benefits or status accorded to a married couple.


The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was enacted in 1996. DOMA's Section 2 says that no state needs to recognize the legal validity of a same-sex relationship even if recognized as marriage by another state. It purports to relieve a state of its reciprocal obligation to honor the laws of other states as required by the Constitution's full faith and credit clause.[16] Even before DOMA, however, states sometimes refused to recognize a marriage from another jurisdiction if it was counter to its "strongly held public policies".[17] Most lawsuits that seek to require a state to recognize a marriage established in another jurisdiction argue on the basis of equal protection and due process, not the full faith and credit clause.[a]


According to Alfred Kinsey's research into human sexuality in the mid-20th century, most humans do not fall exclusively into heterosexual or homosexual classifications but somewhere between.[1] The Kinsey scale measures sexual attraction and behavior on a seven-point scale ranging from 0 ("exclusively heterosexual") to 6 ("exclusively homosexual"). According to Kinsey's study, most persons fall within the range of 1 to 5 (a mixture of heterosexual and homosexual). Although Kinsey's methodology has come under criticism, the scale is still widely used in describing the phenomenon of bisexuality.
In some cultures, historical and literary records from most literate societies indicate that male bisexuality was common and indeed expected. These relationships were generally age-structured as in pederasty[31] or shudo. or gender-structured as in the Two-Spirit or bacchá practices. Most of the commonly cited examples of male "homosexuality" in previous cultures would more properly be categorized as bisexuality. Determining the history of female bisexuality is more problematic, in that women in most of the studied societies were under the domination of the males, and on one hand had less self-determination and freedom of movement and expression, and on the other were not the ones writing or keeping the literary record. Sappho, however, is a notable exception.
Even though transsexuals are also considered transgender because as they transcend the barriers of sex, they also transcend the social barriers of gender. Many transsexual people do not like to be identified as transgender for different reasons. Some because they do not want to be associated with Xdressers and transvestites. Which is understandable since many ignorant people see transsexuals as transvestites. Perhaps in the same way that people with DSD do not like to be seen as transsexuals, which in fact they aren't.
^ Jump up to: a b c d Thomas E. Bevan, The Psychobiology of Transsexualism and Transgenderism (2014, ISBN 1-4408-3127-0), page 42: "The term transsexual was introduced by Cauldwell (1949) and popularized by Harry Benjamin (1966) [...]. The term transgender was coined by John Oliven (1965) and popularized by various transgender people who pioneered the concept and practice of transgenderism. It is sometimes said that Virginia Prince (1976) popularized the term, but history shows that many transgender people advocated the use of this term much more than Prince."

In spite of these similarities, these two groups should not be and cannot be thought of as one. The truth is that the vast majority of people with intersex conditions identify as male or female rather than transgender or transsexual. Thus, where all people who identify as transgender or transsexual experience problems with their gender identity, only a small portion of intersex people experience these problems.


Transgender people have a gender identity or gender expression that differs from their assigned sex.[1][2][3] Some transgender people who desire medical assistance to transition from one sex to another identify as transsexual.[4][5] Transgender – often shortened as trans – is also an umbrella term: in addition to including people whose gender identity is the opposite of their assigned sex (trans men and trans women), it may include people who are not exclusively masculine or feminine (people who are genderqueer or non-binary, including bigender, pangender, genderfluid, or agender).[2][6][7] Other definitions of transgender also include people who belong to a third gender, or else conceptualize transgender people as a third gender.[8][9] Infrequently, the term transgender is defined very broadly to include cross-dressers,[10] regardless of their gender identity.
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