Jake Gellar-Goad's blog

This is what democracy looks like

This photo blog is composed of images from the Raleigh-Durham office of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Earlier today, with the help of the Democracy Summer interns, we were able to register to vote many of our newest citizens who had just sworn their oath of allegiance. I am given hope by looking at the diversity in this electorate of the future. There were so many smiles as folks checked that first box.

New Don't Be Gay in Russia Law

I know this isn't NC related, but the mainstream media is doing such a poor job covering it, that I felt obligated to share it where I could. Warning, you may not want to see the image or video at the bottom.

http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/putin-signs-%E2%80%98gay-propaganda%E2%80%99-bill-law300613

Putin signs ‘gay propaganda’ bill into law

Russian president has signed the nationwide bill, passed by the State Duma and Senate unanimously, into law. Many gay rights campaigners say it will incite hate crime

http://joemygod.blogspot.com/2013/07/russia-gay-dutch-tourists-arrested-for.html#disqus_thread

RUSSIA: Gay Dutch Tourists Arrested For Violating Homosexual Propaganda Ban

The Russian LGBT Network reports on Facebook:
"URGENT NEWS! In Murmansk city (North Russia) 3 Dutch citizens detained by the police on charges of gay-propaganda. "

NC's 18th Annual Gay & Lesbian Film Festival

The 18th annual North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film Festival will run from August 9th to 18th. I've been going to this annual event off and on for several years now. It's a little hit or miss, but there are always some gems in the selections. I'm excited to see that North Carolina will be featured, at least briefly, on the big screen given that it's the North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film festival.

Naturalization Ceremony photoblog

With the immigration issue in the national spotlight, many hopes rest on the changing demographics of the future electorate. Strength through diversity seemed to be one of the resounding themes at a naturalization ceremony that I attended with my two Democracy Summer interns earlier today as individuals from over 30 different countries became American citizens. And with our help, many of them registered to vote. Here is some of what we saw.

Moral Monday 10th wave photoblog

There must be something about round numbers that makes people want to take part, because the 10th wave of the Moral Mondays had a strong turnout. There was a lot of pink and purple to be seen. Some rainbow colors as well. And the Democracy Summer interns even got in some voter registration.

Even as Moral Mondays have been a huge success in terms of turnout and media attention, we have to be thinking about what's ahead as the legislative session nears its end, and one piece of what is ahead is voter registration and mobilization.

Celebration of progress towards equality

There was a great array of speakers in Raleigh tonight at the celebration and info session around today's marriage victories at the Supreme Court including legislators, speakers from Equality NC, and the ACLU. My very preliminary understanding of the ruling is that there wasn't standing for Prop 8 which means marriage equality returns to California and puts about a third of the country's population in marriage equality states. And with the ruling against DOMA that means federal benefits will now be extended to same-sex married couples in states that recognize marriage equality.

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