The Latest News

Trump's Judicial Appointments Will Impact LGBTQ Rights Far Beyond Presidency

Posted On: January 19, 2021

As I have mentioned before, in addition to the Supreme Court, Donald Trump appointed a tremendous number of Federal Court Judges, which most people have not taken note of.

Nearly 40% of the Judges he has appointed have a history of hostility towards the LGBTQ community.  This is truly significant since the Federal Courts are throughout the land and in each of the states and they are the avenue which cases will have to travel to reach the Supreme Court.  Many cases therefore could be cut short by an unfriendly decision in a lower Federal Court case.

Trump's lasting impact on the Federal Judiciary could roll back and reverse much of the progress made by the LGBTQ community over decades.  Unfortunately, he has significantly altered the makeup of the Federal Judiciary, from the Lower Courts, right up to the Supreme Court.  This was also made possible by Senate Republicans and they may also create an obstacle for the new administration. 

In total, over his four years as president, Trump appointed 3 Supreme Court Judges and 230 Lower Court Judges to lifetime positions, many of which are young, white and male Jurists, who have come to the bench with a perspective that LGBTQ people are “less than”.  This had a lot to do with Trump’s administration being able to get confirmation of appointees.  The fact is, Trump has placed about 30% of the active serving Federal Appeals Court Judges.  This is freighting. 

When you think of it in numbers, the Supreme Court has roughly 100 to 150 cases annually but the 13 Federal Appeal Courts around the country hear thousands of the most consequential cases every year that shape the laws and effect the rights of millions of Americans.  This is a dangerous outcome of the current administration that many did not look closely enough at.

This article is a very good read with respect to exactly how the judiciary looks going forward and the damage that Trump may have caused.

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A Photographic History of Men in Love

Posted On: January 11, 2021

This is a lovely collection that creates a photographic history of men in love.  It is not only touching but the bravery of these men is amazing.  Notwithstanding the times in which they lived, where it was not only illegal to be gay but literarily could cost you your life simply by expressing your love and affection for your same sex partner.  I particularly love the photo of the two young men holding the sign “not married yet but willing to be” which is more than a century before marriage became legalized in the United States.  Progress has been slow and we are still in danger of discrimination and even violence.  I remember in my own internship with Lambda Legal Defense fighting Sodomy laws that were still on the books in Texas.  It's great that these pictures were found and have now been preserved in Loving: A Photographic History of Men in Love, 1850s-1950s.

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Gone But Not Forgotten: 12 Trailblazing Women We Lost in 2020

Posted On: January 05, 2021

We lost so many people this past year it feels inconceivable.  I am especially sorry for the loss of these trailblazing women who opened doors, broke barriers, shattered ceilings, paved new pathways for women, and inspired so many to do more in their everyday lives.

The loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg literally made me cry.  I never had the privilege of meeting her, but she was just so amazing and inspiring and her death came at such a tragic point in our history.  Not only did her time on the Supreme Court change so much for us, but her passing and who has been placed on the bench in her stead may also have an untold impact on us for years to come.

I also feel cheated not only by the loss of these women but for some like Katherine Johnson, the mathematician for NASA 101, whom I never knew about until I saw the movie Hidden Figures.  How horrible is it that this group of black women, who made it possible for the space program to be successful and actually saved men’s lives, were never recognized or had their story told in our school’s history books for decades?  Our education system must not just tell the white man’s history (his story) but needs to embrace all people’s history, minorities of all colors as well as women’s history (her story)! 

One of the women listed here, B. Smith, was a restaurateur and a model.  I had the privilege to meet and dine on several occasions in her New York City restaurant which was absolutely amazing. 

Remember the women that stepped forward in World War II:  well, we have lost the original “Rosie the Riveter” Rosalind Walter.

I hope you enjoy this article as much as I did and I look forward to hearing about many new women who are trailblazing for the next generation!

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The Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals Wish You And Your Family A Happy New Year!

Posted On: December 31, 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

It's my pleasure to share my good friend and colleague Elizabeth Vaz's New Years wish from the Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals!

The Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals seeks to inform and answer all of the questions you may have regarding the Collaborative Divorce process as well as help foster understanding and further our mission of helping families make informed choices about how best to proceed throughout any family crisis.

For immediate information, please visit:

Website • Facebook • Instagram • LinkedIn
Phone: 844-542-3700 • Email: info@licdp.com

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Welcome To The Latest Collaborative Circle On YouTube

Posted On: December 28, 2020

Welcome back to the Collaborative Circle!

As a reminder, on the last Tuesday of every month, the Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals releases their Collaborative Circle on YouTube, which seeks to inform and answer all of the questions you may have regarding the Collaborative Divorce process as well as help foster understanding and further our mission of helping families make informed choices about how best to proceed throughout any family crisis.

I was featured in the November 2020 video, and while we did post elsewhere, we did not post on my website, so here it is...Enjoy!


Parenting Time Over The Holidays & The Collaborative Process


Anyone seeking more information about how we can help families in conflict, during divorce or separation, please reach out.


More about the Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals:

The Long Island Collaborative Divorce Professionals group is committed to helping families find a better path when faced with divorce or family conflict.

We are a coalition of interdisciplinary experts comprised of eight attorneys, four financial neutrals, and two family support specialists whose dedication and sole mission is to serve Long Island families in supportive and confidential ways during times of family crisis.

For immediate information, please visit:

Website • Facebook • Instagram • LinkedIn
Phone: 844-542-3700 • Email: info@licdp.com

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Couple Married For 47 Years Die Of COVID At The Same Time

Posted On: December 22, 2020

This is a very touching article, like Romeo and Juliet.  This Michigan couple was married for 47 years and died in the hospital on the same day at the exact same time.  They were 75 and 78 years old, respectively.

They were both no strangers to public service; Pat was a registered nurse for over 35 years at the hospital and Leslie was a veteran of the United States Naval Reserves.

This couple did literally everything together...an incredibly heart-warming story and read.

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Biden Administration On Track To Be Most LGBTQ-Inclusive In U.S. History

Posted On: December 14, 2020

So, I don’t know about you, but I finally feel like I can take a huge deep breath.  It is wonderful!  There is still a long way to go to put our world back on track, but Biden has shown that he is not only supportive of the LGBTQ community but he's putting words into action.

This article demonstrates how Biden’s administration may be the most inclusive for all including the LGBTQ community in our entire history!  We will have the first openly LGBTQ cabinet member confirmed by the Senate. There are many that also are encouraging Biden; if the opportunity arises for him to appoint the first openly LGBTQ Justice to the Supreme Court.  That would be amazing!!

Kamala Harris’s openly lesbian Chief of Staff has been announced as the Deputy Press Secretary for the new administration. This is so encouraging.  My only hope is that this new administration can quickly undo many of the terrible wrongs, outright discrimination and backward steps taken by the last administration.

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Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill Asks Supreme Court To Reverse Lafayette Couple's Same-Sex Parenting Case

Posted On: December 08, 2020

In an amazing display of inappropriate use of public office, the Attorney General for the state of Indiana has petitioned the United States Supreme Court seeking a reversal of a lower court decision in Indiana, which allowed same-sex couples to both be listed as parents on the birth certificate for their child. The US Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Indiana affirmed the decision by the lower court Justice in Indiana's Federal Southern District Court.  The Lower Court stated that Indiana laws that limited who could be called a parent of a child were unconstitutional.

It is worrisome why some state officials continue to fight against families headed by same-sex spouses. This case was originally commenced by petition by the lesbian couple in 2015.  They sued Indiana's health commission and various county officials because the county officials would not list both of them as parents on the birth certificate of their son, who was conceived through artificial insemination. The lame excuse given by the health officials was that they were not able to list both parents because the software used by the state to produce birth certificates would not allow two women to be listed as parents on one certificate.  I guess Indiana is unique; unlike any other state in the union they apparently do not have any computer experts to deal with such a crisis of software incompatibility.

Furthermore, Indiana’s Attorney General made the inspiring argument in his petition that: upholding the lower court's decision would violate common sense and throw into jeopardy parental rights based on biology.  Well, this goes against common sense especially when rights are given up through artificial insemination like in the use of a sperm bank! The Attorney General went on to argue that a biological father’s rights and obligations to the child have necessarily been undermined without proper adjudication.  If that was the case, then in every circumstance of artificial insemination across the country, including millions by heterosexual couples, would be undermined nationally to that of a biological sperm donor. It is clear that Indiana’s Attorney General has not thought through the implications of his argument nationwide or the peril for actual sperm donors.  Under his argument maybe sperm donors now have to worry about child support obligations.

Selected excerpt(s) and/or linked article courtesy of Dave Bangert & Johnny Magdaleno, Indianapolis Star
Photo Provided by Article Subjects Ruby & Ashlee Henderson

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