Springfield Says Yes to Anti-Gay Discrimination

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RFT Street Team
A couple getting engaged at St. Louis' PrideFest.
Last year, the city council of Springfield took a historic stand, extending the city's non-discrimination ordinance -- which governs housing, employment and public accommodations like parks and city pools -- to gay, lesbian and transgender men and women.

Last night, voters repealed it.

In a narrow margin, 51.43 percent voted to repeal the LGBT protections, while 48.57 percent voted to keep them.

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This Missouri Mayor Had the Perfect Reaction to Kansas' Latest Anti-LGBT Antics

Categories: LGBT

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Kansas City Mayor's Office
Kansas City mayor Sly James.
If Kansas' LGBT state workers don't want to work in a place where they can be fired or harassed for their sexuality or gender identity, they're welcome to cross the border to Missouri.

That was the message from Kansas City mayor and LGBT ally Sly James, who reached out to Kansas' LGBT community online:

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Republicans' "St. Louis Resolution" Asks Presidential Candidates To Stop Gay Bashing

Categories: LGBT, Politics

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david_shankbone via flickr
Meghan McCain, a pro-LGBT Republican and daughter of 2008 presidential nominee John McCain.
As the 2016 presidential race nears, three prominent Republicans who support LGBT rights hope a resolution signed in St. Louis will prevent candidates from using homophobic or gay-bashing rhetoric during the campaign.

Author and activist Meghan McCain told Washington University students Tuesday how two gay friends helped her through the difficult days after her father John McCain lost his 2008 bid for president.

"I just thought, if I can't follow up and give them the same love and support, then I can't live with myself," she said, according to Wash. U. student newspaper Student Life. She's been a gay-rights advocate ever since, even serving on the board of GLAAD, an LGBT media watchdog.

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Unlike Last Year, No Mention of LGBT Protections in Gov. Nixon's State of the State

Categories: LGBT, Politics

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via
Governor Jay Nixon gives the State of the State address to the legislature.
In a year when President Barack Obama made history just for saying the word "transgender" in the State of the Union, Governor Jay Nixon made no mention of LGBT issues in Wednesday's State of the State address.

That's a change from last year, when Nixon specifically called on the Missouri Legislature to pass the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act, which protects LGBT people from being fired, evicted or refused service due to their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

"We need to end discrimination against LGBT Missourians in the workplace," Nixon said during last year's State of the State speech. "No Missourian should be fired because of who they are or who they love. Last year, the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act passed the Senate with bipartisan support but failed to get to my desk. Let's get it done this year."

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Michael Sam Gets Engaged to College Sweetheart Vito Cammisano: Reports

Categories: LGBT

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Instagram
Micahel Sam and Vito Cammisano in Rome, where they apparently decided to get hitched.
Michael Sam, the NFL's first openly gay player, and his longtime boyfriend Vito Cammisano are tying the knot.

Sam, who was drafted to the St. Louis Rams after a standout career with the University of Missouri, and Cammisano haven't officially announced their engagement, but some Instagram sleuthing from TMZ says the couple decided to make it official in Rome during a European vacation.

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LGBT Missourians Take Fight Against Workplace Discrimination to Legislature, Again

Categories: LGBT, Politics

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Purple Sherbet Photography
LGBT couples may have the right to marry in (some parts of) Missouri, but they still aren't protected from being fired, evicted or refused service based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

That means an LGBT couple who weds on Sunday could end up jobless and homeless on Monday with no legal ramifications, all because of who they love or how they look.

The Missouri Legislature could change all that, but it hasn't. For fifteen years, the legislature has failed to pass the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act, which would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of identities protected from employment and housing discrimination.

Now the battle is on to convince lawmakers, especially the 163 members of Missouri's House of Representatives, to grant those basic protections for LGBT Missourians before the clock runs out on yet another legislative session.

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Kansas City Police Apologize to Transgender Community After "Him/Her" Twitter Gaffe

Categories: LGBT

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Purple Sherbet Photograph
LGBT equality is more than just marriage laws; it's also about language.
"Gender," "sex," "identity," "preference," "expression" -- those are a few relatively simple concepts critical to talking about LGBT issues.

"Him/Her" is not one of them.

That lesson was learned the hard way by one Kansas City Police Department employee on Friday while live-Tweeting a police stop of a female "possible prostitute."

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[PHOTOS] Women Who Met as Ferguson Protesters Marry at St. Louis City Hall

Categories: Ferguson, LGBT

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All photos by Kelly Glueck
Brittany Ferrell says "yes" to Alexis Templeton.
Surrounded by turmoil in the streets of Ferguson, Alexis Templeton and Brittany Ferrell fell in love.

On Tuesday, the two University of Missouri-St. Louis students and activist leaders started to make their love official by getting engaged on the steps of St. Louis City Hall and applying for their marriage license. The couple says they're still planning their ceremony -- no surprise since Ferrell had only proposed the day before.

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GOP Leaders Try, Fail to Stop Missouri from Recognizing Gay Marriages

Categories: LGBT

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House Speaker Tim Jones (L) and Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey.
Better luck next time, boys.

Missouri's Republican legislative leaders tried this month to stop the Show-Me State from recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states, such as Illinois, which expanded the right to marry more than a year ago.

Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey, a Republican from St. Charles, and House Speaker Tim Jones, a Republican from Eureka, filed a motion to intervene in the Jackson County case Barrier v. Vasterling so they could take the case to the Missouri Supreme Court. Judge Dale Youngs ruled in that case in October that Missouri must recognize out-of-state gay marriages, giving those couples access to tax, insurance, veterans' and other benefits despite the Missouri's ten-year-old, voter-approved ban on same-sex marriages.

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Missouri Could Earn $39 Million By Keeping Same-Sex Marriage Legal

Categories: LGBT

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Lindsay Toler
Sadie Pierce and Lilly Leyh were the first couple to officially marry in St. Louis after a judge struck down Missouri's ban on gay marriage.
If same-sex marriage stays legal in Missouri, wedding spending could funnel almost $39 million into the state economy.

That's according to a new study from financial site NerdWallet, whose analysts crunched the numbers to see how America's $51 billion wedding industry will expand as the right to marry spreads. Consumer spending on same-sex weddings would add up to more than $2.5 billion nationwide if gay marriage is legalized throughout the U.S., the study says.

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