05-21-2018  6:02 am      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

Raina Croff to Speak at Architectural Heritage Center

'When the Landmarks are Gone: Older African Americans, Place, and Change in N/NE Portland’ describes SHARP Walking Program ...

Portland Playhouse Presents August Wilson’s ‘Fences’ Through June 10

May 20 performance will include discussion on mental health; June 10 performance will be followed by discussion of fatherhood ...

Peggy Houston-Shivers Presents Benefit Concert for Allen Temple CME

Concert to take place May 20 at Maranatha Church ...

Family Friendly Talent Show, May 18

Family Fun Night series continues at Matt Dishman Community Center ...

3 high school seniors die in crash weeks before graduation

YONCALLA, Ore. (AP) — School officials say three senior girls were killed in a car crash on Interstate 5 in western Oregon, just weeks before graduation.Eagle Point High School said on its Facebook page that Luciana Tellez, Giselle Montano and Esmeralda Nava died Saturday night after their...

The Latest: Cougar that attacked cyclists was underweight

SEATTLE (AP) — The Latest on a cougar attack that killed one mountain biker and wounded another outside Seattle (all times local):4:10 p.m.Authorities say the cougar that attacked two cyclists east of Seattle, killing one of them, appears to have been emaciated.Washington Department of Fish...

Cyclists tried to scare cougar but it attacked, killing 1

SEATTLE (AP) — The two mountain bikers did what they were supposed to do when they noticed a mountain lion tailing them on a trail east of Seattle.They got off their bikes. They faced the beast, shouted and tried to spook it. After it charged, one even smacked the cougar with his bike, and...

The Latest: Cougar that attacked cyclists was underweight

SEATTLE (AP) — The Latest on a cougar attack that killed one mountain biker and wounded another outside Seattle (all times local):4:10 p.m.Authorities say the cougar that attacked two cyclists east of Seattle, killing one of them, appears to have been emaciated.Washington Department of Fish...

OPINION

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...

Will Israel’s Likud Party Ever Respect the Rights of Palestinians?

Bill Fletcher weighs in on the precarious future of the two-state solution between the Israeli government and the Palestinian people ...

The Future of Medicinal Marijuana in Pets

Dr. Jasmine Streeter says CBD-derived products show beneficial therapeutic benefits for pets ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Native American lacrosse teams leagueless in South Dakota

Travis Brave Heart was planning to spend his senior season this spring and summer tuning up to play college lacrosse in the fall. Instead, the 17-year-old standout from Aberdeen, South Dakota, is faced with the prospect of not playing at all.His Lightning Stick Society team was one of three Native...

2018 midterms show start of Democratic scramble for 2020

ATLANTA (AP) — Look closely enough at the 2018 midterm campaign and you'll see the stirrings of a Democratic scramble to reclaim the White House from President Donald Trump.The leading players — from established national figures such as former Vice President Joe Biden and Sens. Bernie...

Black women look to flex power in Georgia governor's race

ATLANTA (AP) — This week's primary election in Georgia presents black women voters with a rare opportunity: To give a Democrat who looks like them a chance at occupying the governor's mansion in a Republican-controlled state.A Democratic primary win Tuesday for Stacey Abrams or Stacey Evans...

ENTERTAINMENT

'Deadpool 2' ends Avengers' box-office reign, rakes in 5M

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Deadpool and his foul-mouthed crew of misfits and malcontents have taken down the Avengers.Fox's "Deadpool 2" brought in 5 million this weekend, giving it the second-highest opening ever for an R-rated movie and ending the three-week reign of Disney's "Avengers:...

Winners in the top categories at Billboard Music Awards

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A list of winners in the top categories at the 2018 Billboard Music Awards, held Sunday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.— Top Hot 100 song: "Despacito" by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber— Top Billboard 200 album: "DAMN." by...

The Latest: Janet Jackson honored at Billboard Awards

The Latest on the Billboard Music Awards (all times local):7:18 p.m.The youngest of the legendary Jackson musical family, Janet Jackson gave her first televised performance in nine years at the Billboard Music Awards.She was honored as the first black woman to receive the Billboard Icon Award on...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

School victims honored at Billboard Awards; Janet, BTS shine

The 2018 Billboard Music Awards paid tribute to the students and teachers affected by recent deadly shootings in...

Economic talks between US and China lead to trade war truce

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States and China are pulling back from the brink of a trade war after the...

In North Korea nuke site closure, spectacle trumps substance

TOKYO (AP) — Foreign journalists will be allowed to journey deep into the mountains of North Korea this...

Syrian government captures most of IS-held area in Damascus

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian government forces on Monday captured most of a key neighborhood in southern Damascus...

LGBT community cheers pope's 'God made you like this' remark

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis' reported comments to a gay man that "God made you like this" have been...

Nurse dead in Congo as Ebola vaccination campaign starts

KINSHASA, Congo (AP) — A nurse has died from Ebola in Bikoro, the rural northwestern town where the...

Yes supporters await result of Irish same sex marriage vote
Shawn Pogatchnik, Associated Press

DUBLIN (AP) — Gay couples of Ireland woke up Sunday in what felt like a nation reborn, with dreams of wedding plans dancing in their heads.

This new reality was sinking in after the Irish people voted with a surprisingly strong 62 percent "yes" to enshrine the right to gay marriage in the country's conservative 1937 constitution. Thousands of revelers of all sexual identities celebrated until dawn after the result was announced Saturday night.

The Justice Department confirmed Sunday it plans to draft a marriage bill this week that will permit those taking vows in civil ceremonies to choose either to be "husband and wife" or "spouses of each other." It will ensure that no church is required to perform a gay marriage, a key demand of the dominant Catholic Church and also the main Protestant and Muslim communities in Ireland.

Deputy Prime Minister Joan Burton said she expects the bill to become law by early July. Because existing law requires a minimum three-month notice for any civil marriages, the first gay weddings cannot happen until the fall.

For Sen. Katherine Zappone and Ann Louise Gilligan, their day has nearly come. Since 2003 they have fought for legal recognition of their Canadian marriage, suffering setbacks and delays as they sued the state all the way to the Supreme Court.

"For so long, I've been having to dig in my heels and say ... Well, we ARE married. I'm a married woman!" said Zappone, a Seattle native who settled with her Irish spouse in Dublin three decades ago.

"We are now entering a new Ireland," said Gilligan, a former nun.

Zappone and Gilligan thrilled a crowd of thousands of rainbow flag-waving revelers Saturday at the results center at Dublin Castle with a playful promise to renew their vows. Zappone dramatically broke off from a live TV interview, stared directly into the camera, and asked Gilligan to marry her all over again.

"I said yes to Katherine 12 years ago at our marriage in Canada," Gilligan, nearby, shouted to the crowd. "And now we are bringing the 'yes' back home to Ireland, our country of Ireland! Yes, yes, yes!"

In a more sober mood Sunday, the couple reflected on their long road to social acceptance and the remaining wait to get officially hitched in Ireland, before Christmas they hope.

"It took us hours to get a taxi (Saturday night) because so many people came up to us in tears, wanting to talk to us. They now felt so much freer, and proud," said Zappone, who became Ireland's first openly lesbian lawmaker when Prime Minister Enda Kenny appointed her to the Senate in 2011.

"There aren't that many moments in life where you are surrounded with an exuberance of joy. These are rare moments," said Gilligan, a former Loreto nun who left the order in her mid-20s to pursue social justice as a lay Catholic. She wasn't sure about her sexuality until Zappone entered their first theology class together at Boston College in 1981.

"The door opened, and this gorgeous woman came in. I didn't know I was lesbian. I'm a late learner," Gilligan recalled with a laugh. "I fell in love with Katherine, and I went for it. I simply adored her, and I wanted to be with her forever and ever, and here we are!"

They married in Vancouver and sued Ireland for legal recognition, but in 2006 the High Court ruled that Irish law — while never explicit in defining marriage as solely between a man and woman — universally understood this to be the case. The Supreme Court kicked their appeal back to the High Court in 2012.

Months later Gilligan, who is in her late 60s, was hospitalized with a brain hemorrhage. Zappone, yet again, faced bureaucratic presumptions when trying to see her wife, since hospital admissions didn't recognize her as a spouse or other family member. She could have lied and said they had an Irish-recognized civil partnership, a weaker form of marriage-style contract enacted into Irish law in 2010, but Zappone insisted on stating uncomfortable reality: "I am married to her, and you have to recognize that," she recalled.

The medical staff understood and, after Zappone had spent five weeks at Gilligan's bedside, a doctor wrote them a long note of appreciation, wishing he had what they had.

What they still won't have, for many months to come, is an Irish-recognized marriage.

The family section of Ireland's constitution eventually will read, "Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex." First, parliament must pass the same-sex marriage bill. Analysts expect easy passage, since all parties support the measure. Then Ireland's ceremonial head of state, President Michael D. Higgins, will sign the bill into law and amend the constitution.

"Technically and legally we'll probably have to wait until towards the end of the year," Zappone said. "Then we'll head towards the big day."

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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