gay rights

Rachel Hubbard / KOSU

Every year, the foster care system in the U.S. is home to nearly half a million kids. A debate is now brewing in state legislatures and Congress about the best way to get these kids in permanent homes and who has the right to take care of them.

Kris Williams and Rebekah Wilson have been dating for four years. They live together in a modest white house on the west side of Oklahoma City with their two dogs and Ozzy, Kris’s son from a previous relationship.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin managed to anger both gun-rights and LGBTQ-rights activists late Friday with two separate actions.

In a rare blow to the National Rifle Association, Fallin vetoed a bill that would have loosened gun laws in the conservative state. Had it passed, SB 1212 would have allowed gun owners to carry a firearm — either open or concealed, loaded or unloaded — without a state license or permit. About a dozen states have passed similar so-called "constitutional carry" laws.

Emily Wendler / StateImpact Oklahoma

A group of about 20 parents asked Oklahoma City Public School Board members on Monday to kick former OKC Mayor Kirk Humphreys off the board of a local charter school.

Humphreys recently equated homosexuality to pedophilia while on a Sunday morning talk show, and many John Rex Charter School parents feel his comments were homophobic, and disqualify him from serving on the charter’s board of directors.

The Church of England is advising teachers to allow and encourage children to explore their gender identity.

In guidance issued Sunday the Church's education office told its almost 5,000 schools to allow students "to be able to play with the many cloaks of identity."

"Every one of us is loved unconditionally by God. We must avoid at all costs, diminishing the dignity of any individual to a stereotype or a problem," said Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby in a forward to the guidance.

Hello! We're back this week with a roundup that focuses on the goings-on at 400 Maryland Ave. SW — that's the federal Department of Education, in case you didn't know.

DeVos comments on LGBT student protections in new profile

Savannah Melher

When Troy Stevenson left the Democratic Party, after decades of political activism, his Republican colleagues were on his mind.

Stevenson, who heads Freedom Oklahoma, the state’s largest and most politically active LGBTQ rights organization, announced this month he switched his party affiliation to Independent. He said a lack of civility and an unwillingness to work with conservatives have stymied the party.

Updated at 6:25 p.m. ET

Edith Windsor loved Thea Spyer. For nearly half a century, the two were partners and eventually were legally married as well. When Spyer died in 2009, though, the federal government didn't recognize that love on Windsor's tax forms, expecting her to pay more than $350,000 in estate taxes.

Victor A. Pozadas

Thousands lined the OKC Pride parade route along NW 39th Street on Sunday evening.

The parade capped off a weekend of events for OKC Pride, which was celebrating 30 years since its first parade in 1987. Small gay pride celebrations in Oklahoma City date back to the 1970s.

Above are some photos we took during the parade.

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The Osage Nation has voted to change the definition of marriage in an election that drew an overwhelming number of absentee ballots.

The tribe will now define marriage as a union between "two persons" rather than "a man and a woman."

More than 1,100 people sent in absentee ballots but only 347 people showed up for onsite balloting during a two-day early voting period and on Monday, the actual election day.

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