Thursday, June 6, 2013

Via JMG: GERMANY: High Court Rules That Gay Couples Deserve Equal Tax Benefits

In what is being characterized as a setback to the administration of Chancellor Angela Merkel, Germany's highest court has ruled that same-sex couples are entitled to the same tax benefits granted to married straight couples.
The verdict requires a change in the law and is a red rag to some in Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) and its traditionally Catholic Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union (CSU), who worry that conservative values are being diluted. The ruling was widely expected after the court in February overturned a ban on same-sex couples adopting a child already adopted by one of the partners. "The provisions set out in the income-tax law violate the general rule of equality," wrote the Karlsruhe-based court, adding the law should be changed retroactively from August 2001. Same-sex partnerships have been legal in Germany since 2001 but do not enjoy the same tax benefits as married heterosexuals.
Openly gay Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle hailed the ruling, saying that the time has come "for German tax law to be as modern as its society." A spokesman for the Christian Social Union party denounced the news as an attack on the "sanctity of marriage." (Tipped by JMG reader Matthew)

Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Another Positive Marriage Poll

You'll have to embiggen the above image to see the details, but here's the gist of the latest Bloomberg Poll:
More than half of Americans support allowing same-sex couples to marry, endorsing the goal of gay-rights activists as the U.S. Supreme Court this month prepares to rule on the issue for the first time. Fifty-two percent say they back giving gay couples the right to marry, compared with 41 percent who are opposed, according to a Bloomberg National Poll conducted May 31-June 3. Of those supporters, more than half -- 61 percent -- want a national law rather than a state-by-state approach. During arguments in March, the justices signaled a reluctance to declare a right to same-sex marriage nationwide.

Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: POLL: Majority Of Same-Sex Marriage Opponents Say Legalization Is Inevitable

Jeremy Hooper writes at NOM Exposed:
This is what NOM is up against: a reality where even a majority of its own supporters know that marriage equality is going to happen, despite their driven efforts. This obvious inevitability is, far and away, the most damaging thing NOM faces—which is precisely why they are working so hard to deny it. They know that the writing on the wall demoralizes their support base and depresses their donations, so they are acting as if it's all a lie. They pretend the trajectory and polling is just something we've concocted rather than an accurate representation of where America stands. This Pew Poll shows them to be wrong. More importantly, it shows that even a majority of their own supporters know it.

Reposted from Joe

Via JMG From Freedom To Work


Reposted from Joe

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:

Daily Buddhist Wisdom

Considering the harm others do to you As created by your former deeds, do not anger. Act such that further suffering will not be created And your own faults will disappear.
- Nagarjuna, "Precious Garland"