Just Married: Gay Marriage and the Expansion of Human Rights (Living Out: Gay and Lesbian Autobiographies)

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9780299178802: Just Married:  Gay Marriage and the Expansion of Human Rights (Living Out: Gay and Lesbian Autobiographies)

    Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell made international news headlines and human rights history in January 2001 when they became one of the first gay couples anywhere in the world to be issued a government marriage certificate. The marriage would not become fully legal, however, until the Ontario provincial government registered the marriage, and it refused to do so. Bourassa, Varnell, and their church have brought a lawsuit asking for legal registration, but the case is still in the courts.
    Just Married is an account by Bourassa and Varnell of how their church, the Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto, decided to test the Canadian marriage laws, and how they and a lesbian couple agreed to be the ones to make the attempt. Under the Ontario Marriage Act, any adult couple can be granted a marriage license if a church, following ancient tradition, reads the marriage banns on the three Sundays prior to the wedding. Joe and Kevin had long wished to be legally married in their church. They expected controversy, but little expected the massive scale of the international coverage that occurred, as reporting on their intentions and their wedding of them shot across the Internet and their photographs appeared in newspapers not only across North America but also in Europe, Asia, and South America.
    Despite the legal and political wrangling, the opposition and support they received, the disputes among religious denominations and organizations, and the glare of the media lights, this remains a story of two people who chose to make a life together and sought the support of both church and state for their marriage. They believe they have taken part in an incredible event—one that will change the world, not just for Canadians, but for citizens, families, and communities everywhere.

Copublished with Doubleday Canada.
The Wisconsin edition is for sale only in the United States.

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From the Publisher:

Living Out: Gay and Lesbian Autobiography Joan Larkin and David Bergman, Series Editors Copublished with Doubleday Canada. Wisconsin edition for sale only in the United States.

From the Inside Flap:

Told in their own words, this is the true story of the first gay couple in the world to be issued a marriage certificate and their fight for government recognition.

Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell made international news headlines and human rights history in January 2001 when they became the first gay couple anywhere in the world to be issued a government marriage certificate. They did this according to a well-established Christian tradition ? the reading of the banns ? which has been incorporated into provincial law in Canada. The Metropolitan Community Church has since launched a lawsuit seeking government registration of the marriage, thus removing the last restriction on equal treatment of homosexuals under the law. It is expected that the case will go to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Despite the legal and political wrangling, the attacks of some churches against others, and the glare of the media lights, this remains a story of two people who chose to make a life together and sought the support of both church and state for their marriage. They believe they have taken part in an event that will expand human rights, not just for Canadians, but for citizens, families, and communities everywhere.

?Homosexuals are equal members of society, entitled to the same rights as anyone else. Why, then, should they be denied the right to marry?? ? The Globe and Mail

?Saying marriage is a privilege reserved only for those who are lucky enough to be heterosexual is akin to saying it?s reserved for whites only. It?s unfair to bar an entire group of people from an institution because of something they cannot change.? ? Toronto Sun

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