Just weeks after J.K. Rowling's epic tweet slamming the Westboro Baptist Church after they aimed a barb-filled tweet at the author for suggesting wizards Gandalf and Dumbledore could now get married in Ireland, American LGBT advocacy group Planting Peace made the dreams of nerds everywhere a reality when the organization married the two fantasy icons just mere feet away from WBC's headquarters reports BuzzFeed.
Planting Peace held the fictional wedding outside of Equality House in Topeka, Kansas, which was established across the street from Fred Phelps' hate-filled church. Planting Peace founder Aaron Jackson said the event was a huge success and drew 250 spectators:
"There were people of all ages from all over the world. The crowd was asked at one point in the ceremony to stand and say 'I will' to show a community of support. While the overall tone was joy and fun, everyone seemed to really support the underlying message about standing up to hate and bigotry with love and compassion."
Gandalf and Dumbledore, which were played by two actors, signed copies of their respective books and took pictures with attendees after the ceremony. Planting Peace asked guests to make donations instead of bringing gifts to the fictional wedding. Ironically, WBC didn't picket the fictional wedding that occurred, quite literally, on their doorstep, but did post signs condemning Rowling, Gandalf and Dumbledore.
Watch as the two wizards consummate their fictional marriage with a "magic" kiss, AFTER THE JUMP...
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott under pressure to resist calls for same-sex marriage: "The latest salvo was fired by 38 religious leaders representing major traditions who have written to the prime minister expressing ;grave concerns' about a renewed push to change the Marriage Act."
Former President George W. Bush pocketed $100,000 for speaking at a homeless shelter.
Speaking of 43, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says Bush's vision of a democratic Iraq was unrealistic: “The idea that we could fashion a democracy in Iraq seemed to me unrealistic. I was concerned about it when I first heard those words."
Republican Presidential candidate and bachelor Senator from South Carolina Lindsey Graham on who would be First Lady if he were elected: "Well, I've got a sister. She could play that role if necessary. I've got a lot of friends. We'll have a rotating first lady."
Pedro González Zerolo, an LGBT rights activist who helped get same-sex marriage legalized in Spain, has passed away from pancreatic cancer at the age of 55.
A young Brazilian man known as the 'human Ken doll', who spent over $60,000 on plastic surgery to look like the famed Mattel doll, has died at 20 of Leukemia.
Tom Daley had a wardrobe malfunction that involved a kilt.
One Direction and Zayn Malik are up for the same Teen Choice Award. Awkward.
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Brian Williams probably won't be returning to NBC Nightly News.
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An Arkansas county judge ruled Tuesday that the state must recognize over 500 same-sex marriages that took place last year after another judge struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage. This latest ruling will allow those couples to have access to benefits they've previously been denied while the state Supreme Court reviews the lower court's decision.
Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen validated marriage licenses that were issued to same-sex couples after another judge struck down the state's gay marriage ban. The state Supreme Court halted the distribution of marriage licenses to gay couples after a week in May 2014 and is considering the appeal over a voter-approved same-sex marriage ban.
Some of the same-sex couples who married in Arkansas last year filed a lawsuit in February alleging that the state was violating their rights by not recognizing the unions. Griffen's ruling means the couples can file taxes jointly, appear jointly on a child's birth certificate, enroll together on state health insurance plans and even file for divorce.
Griffen was among a number of people who presided over same-sex marriage ceremonies in May 2014.
Freedom to Marry congratulated the 500 plus Arkansas couples who are now "getting the respect they deserve" and further "urge[d] the United States Supreme Court to ensure that all loving, committed couples are also afforded this right." The Supreme Court is expected to decide by the end of the month whether a constitutional right to marriage exists.
SpaceX posted video from a GoPro that was placed inside a fairing from a Falcon 9 flight that captured ethereal views of Earth and space as the fairing it was placed in descended back toward Earth. Distant stars can be seen along with crystal blue views of Earth's sky, with the Earth's sun peeking over our planet's horizon, as the object spins through space. Watch the disorienting, yet calming video, AFTER THE JUMP…
In a timely send-up of Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar's music video "Bad Blood", comedians Jake Wilson and Jeffery Self highlight the absurdity of the FDA's draconian regulations on blood donation from MSM (men who have sex with men). As we've reported, the FDA has proposed an end to the lifetime ban on blood donation from gay men but still requires one year of celibacy to qualify for blood donation, a requirement medical experts argue is unnecessary.
In the video, which also features Drew Droege, Self tries to resist the many manly temptations around him so he can donate blood.
The pitch-perfect parody, which even takes a swipe at Taylor's army of celebrity woman warriors, awaits you, AFTER THE JUMP...
Sarah Mbuyi was dismissed by Newpark Childcare after telling a lesbian colleague that her “lifestyle” was a sin.
Mbuyi - who argued that the firing breached European law on religious freedom - denied harassment, claiming her colleague asked her about same-sex marriage and was angry she had been barred from marrying her partner in a church.
At an employment tribunal, Mbuyi’s beliefs on same-sex marriage were described as "worthy of respect in a democratic society... not incompatible with human dignity and...not in conflict with the fundamental rights of others."
The tribunal found that Newpark’s ban on employees "expressing adverse views on homosexuality and/or describing homosexuality as a sin" would have a "disparate impact on Christians holding similar views to Miss Mbuyi on the biblical teachings on practicing homosexuality."
Additionally, it was found that Mbuyi’s colleague had initially brought up the issue of sexual orientation and there was little evidence to suggest she targeted the colleague in an attempt to force her faith on her.
Andrea Minichiello Williams, barrister and chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, which supported Mbuyi, said:
“This is a brave judgment and comes as a great relief to Miss Mbuyi and to all of us at the Christian Legal Centre. “This judgment is a ‘common sense’ judgment which shows understanding of the Christian faith and Miss Mbuyi’s freedom to live and speak it out in the work place. “We have been in the employment courts for over a decade now and at last we have a sensible decision.”
“I only ever responded to questions that my colleague asked me and wanted the very best for her. I give glory to God for the decision and say ‘well done’ to the Christian Legal Centre. “I hope that my previous employer and colleagues are well and will understand from this that my intention was for their best.”
Voicing her concern at the decision, Tiffany Clutterbuck, a director of Newpark, said:
“We have robust policies and rules to ensure our nursery is inclusive and supportive for our children and staff and we took the decision to dismiss Miss Mbuyi with a view to protecting that culture. “However, the tribunal found Miss Mbuyi’s actions were not harassment of a gay colleague and that she was entitled to express her religious beliefs in the workplace in the context of the conversation which took place. Our priority will always be to provide an environment where every child feels like he or she belongs.”
In an interview with the BBC yesterday, Mbuyi said she had told her colleague that although God doesn't hate gay people, "he doesn't like what you do."
Watch a report on the case, AFTER THE JUMP...