60 Powerful Steps Forward For Equality

A time line of the most moving moments and photos of the year for gay rights. 2013 is going to be a great year.

1. Jan. 4: Olympia, Washington

Elaine Thompson / AP

Washington Governor Chris Gregoire announces that she wants Washington to become the seventh state in the nation to make gay marriage legal. Gov. Gregorie had previously supported efforts to expand domestic partner rights for gay couples but had not come out in favor of full marriage rights.

ID: 776145

2. Jan. 12: Orlando, Florida

Phelan M. Ebenhack / AP

Tim Galatas and Giulio Giunta embrace after officially registering as a domestic couple during the launch of the Orlando, Florida, new domestic partner registry. The registry gives non-married couples, both gay and heterosexual, some of the same rights as married couples in matters such as hospital visitation and health-care decisions.

ID: 776149

3. Jan. 23: Olympia, Washington

Ted S. Warren / AP

Jane Abbott Lighty greets Sen. Ed Murray after finding out they had enough votes in the state Senate to legalize gay marriage.

ID: 776157

4. Jan. 26: Augusta, Maine

Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Ali Vanderzanden, the political director for Equality Maine, celebrates with a friend after collecting 105,000 signatures, which was enough to force a second referendum on gay marriage in the state.

ID: 776173

5. Jan. 28: Mumbai, India


Indian supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community participate in the Queer Azadi March in Mumbai. In July 2009, the Delhi High Court decriminalized gay sex between consenting adults by declaring a colonial-era ban on homosexuality unconstitutional.

ID: 776165

6. Feb. 1: Seattle, Washington

Joushua Trujillo / AP

Kara Haney and her partner of eight years react as they find out the Washington State Senate passed a bill that would legalize gay marriage in their state.

ID: 776176

7. Feb. 7: San Francisco, California

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Frank Capley-Alfano and Joe Capley-Alfano kiss as they celebrate the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision that the voter-approved Proposition 8 measure violates the civil rights of gay men and lesbians.

ID: 776181
Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Opponents of Proposition 8 break down in tears as they celebrate outside of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

ID: 776183

9. Feb. 8: Olympia, Washington

Elaine Thompson / AP

Rep. Jamie Pedersen is congratulated by his colleagues after the House voted to legalize gay marriage in Washington state.

ID: 776185

10. Feb. 13: Olympia, Washington

Elaine Thompson / AP

Washington Governor Christine Gregoire raises her arms after she signed into law a measure that legalizes same-sex marriage in Washington state.

ID: 776191

11. Feb. 17: Annapolis, Maryland

Patrick Semansky / AP

Openly gay legislators Rep. Maggie McIntosh and Rep. Anne Kaiser hug after the Maryland House passed a gay marriage bill.

ID: 776194
Patrick Semansky / AP

Rep. Luke Clippinger reacts alongside fellow delegates after the House passed Maryland’s gay marriage bill.

ID: 776199

13. Feb. 22: Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii

David Lewis / AP

Sgt. Brandon Morgan hugs his partner, Dalan Wells, in a helicopter hangar at a Marine base in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, upon returning from a six-month deployment to Afghanistan. This photo is among the first showing a gay active duty serviceman in uniform kissing his partner at a homecoming.

ID: 776201

14. March 1: Annapolis, Maryland

Patrick Semansky / AP

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley signs the Civil Marriage Protection Act into law, making Maryland the eighth state to legalize gay marriage.

ID: 776204

15. March 2: Bremerton, Washington

Joe Dyer / AP

Sean Sutton greets his boyfriend of two years with a kiss after Jewell, a sailor, returned from a seven-month deployment aboard the USS Stennis.

ID: 776203

16. April 29: Tokyo, Japan

TORU YAMANAKA / Getty Images

Gay people carry a rainbow flag as they march on the street during the Tokyo Rainbow Pride. Some 1,000 gays, lesbians, and their supporters took part in the parade.

ID: 776208

17. May 9: Valparaiso City, Chile

Eliseo Fernandez / Reuters

A gay couple, Maximiliano Hott and Jorge Aravena, kiss after the Chilean Senate approved an anti-discrimination bill in Valparaiso city. According to local media, the new law establishes that every Chilean, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals, will be guaranteed protection under the law.

ID: 776225

18. May 9: Washington, D.C.

The White House / Getty Images

President Barack Obama comes out in support for gay marriage. President Obama is the first U.S. president in history to support the issue.

ID: 776222

19. May 9: New York City

Spencer Platt / Getty Images

Patrons walk by the Stonewall Inn, a historic gay bar in Greenwich Village, after President Barack Obama announced his support for gay marriage.

ID: 776236

20. May 9: San Francisco, California


A man raises a glass of champagne for a celebratory toast to President Barack Obama’s support of same-sex marriage.

ID: 776217

21. May 10: New York City

Seth Wenig / AP

Whitney Holt talks with her pregnant partner just before getting married at the city clerk’s office in New York. Both traveled to New York from Tennessee to get married one day after the president announced his support for gay marriage.

ID: 776241

22. May 12: Havana, Cuba

STR / Getty Images

Two Cuban men kiss during a march against homophobia.

ID: 776242

23. May 12: Sydney, Australia

Greg Wood / Getty Images

Participants in a pro-marriage equality rally march through the streets of Sydney. Australian Attorney-General Nicola Roxon said the “time is coming” for change, as protesters marched across the nation.

ID: 776243

24. May 19: Harare, Zimbabwe


Members of a gay rights organization in Zimbabwe make a poster to celebrate the International Day Against Xenophobia and Transphobia. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has often called for gays and lesbians to be punished for their behavior, which he said was worse than pigs and dogs.

ID: 776248
ID: 776252

26. May 20: Ukraine

Anatolii Stepanov / Reuters

A group of unidentified people beat Svyatoslav Sheremet, the head of gay rights group. Sheremet was attacked after meeting with members of the media to inform them that a scheduled gay parade was canceled due to threats of violence from neo-Nazis and other hate groups. The attackers ran off when they realized members of the media were documenting the attack.

ID: 776707

27. May 23: Tbilisi, Georgia

VANO SHLAMOV / Getty Images

Christian activists led by Orthodox priests attack participants during a gay rights parade.

ID: 776699

28. May 27: St. Petersburg, Russia


A man protesting against a gay pride parade attacks a gay rights activist in Russia.

ID: 776254

A man attacks a gay rights activist during a gay pride parade in St. Petersburg.

ID: 776710

30. June 2: Ljubljana, Slovenia


A group of people take part in a pride parade in Ljubljana, the biggest city in Slovenia.

ID: 776257

31. June 2: Riga, Latvia


People hold signs during the Baltic Gay Pride parade. The annual event is meant to promote gay rights in this ex-Soviet state, now a member of the European Union, where negative views of homosexuality are common.

ID: 776285

32. June 18: Sao Paulo, Brazil


About 3 million people (!!!!!) took part in this year’s gay pride parade in Sao Paulo. This year’s theme was “Homophobia has cure.”

ID: 776717

33. June 20: New York City

Andree Lateef / Reuters

Jason Welker and Scott Everhart kiss during their wedding ceremony at a comic book shop in Manhattan. The couple was celebrating the first gay nuptials in the superhero world in a new edition from Marvel Comics.

ID: 776303

34. June 23: Berlin, Germany

John Macdougal / Getty Images

A man take part in Berlin’s annual Christopher Street Day in Berlin. Russia has been in the news in 2012 for their laws banning “gay propaganda.”

ID: 776305

35. June 23: Santiago, Chile

Martin Bernetti / Getty Images

A gay couple holds a sign that says “I am not gay, my boyfriend is” during a demonstration for a law for equal rights in Santiago, Chile.

ID: 776310

36. June 24: New York City

TIMOTHY A. CLARY / Getty Images

A protestor holds signs against gay marriage during the 2012 New York Gay Pride parade in New York.

ID: 776316

37. June 30: Singapore

Suhaimi Abdullah / Getty Images

A female participant holds up sign during a demonstration to increase awareness and understanding of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in Singapore. The event was the fourth annual gathering held in support of the freedom to love.

ID: 776320

38. June 30: Madrid, Spain

Dominique Faget / Getty Images

A participant takes part in the gay and lesbian pride parade Spain. The sign says: “Luke, I’m…your mother.”

ID: 776321

39. July 21: San Diego, California

Gregory Bull / AP

For the first time ever, U.S. service members had march in a gay pride event decked out in uniform.

ID: 776329

40. Aug. 3: Decatur, Georgia

Phil Skinner / AP

Jim Fortier and Mark Toomajian kiss as they join about two dozen members of gay rights groups protesting outside the Decatur, Georgia, Chick-fil-A restaurant.

ID: 776332

41. Aug. 11: Port Orchard, Washington

Peter Haley / AP

Derrick Peacock and Pablo Monroy row away after their wedding ceremony. Monroy, 24, a cavalry scout with the Army National Guard, and Peacock, 25, are the faces of a new generation of gays and lesbians entering a world that has radically changed in the quarter-century span of their lives.

ID: 776346
Peter Haley / AP

Derrick and Pablo Monroy dance with their mothers.

ID: 776333

43. Aug. 11: Taoyuan, Taiwan

SAM YEH / Getty Images

Fish Huang and her partner You Ya-ting pose for a photo during their same-sex Buddhist wedding ceremony in Taoyuan. The two women tied the knot in Taiwan’s first same-sex Buddhist wedding, a move rights groups hope will help make the island the first society in Asia to legalize gay marriage.

ID: 776351

44. Sept. 2: Salt Lake City, Utah

Over 300 active Mormons marched in the gay parade as part of the Utah Pride Festival.

ID: 776435
Jim Urquahart / Reuters

Practicing Mormon Chad Smith and his daughters Kathryn and Olivia.

ID: 776493

47. Sept. 13: Golden, Colorado


Ricky Watson of Littleton, Colorado, wipes tears from his eyes after he thanked President Obama for repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” at a campaign rally in Golden, Colorado. Watson was kicked out of the Air Force 25 years ago for being gay.

ID: 776352

48. Oct. 23: Marseille, France

Gerard Julien / Getty Images

Two women kiss in front of people taking part in an anti-gay marriage demonstration in Marseille, France.

ID: 776354

49. Nov. 6: Chicago, Illinois

Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

Keesha Patterson of Ft. Washington, Maryland, proposes to her girlfriend, Rowan Ha, during the election night victory rally at President Barack Obama’s headquarters in Chicago. Maryland became one of the first states to ever vote in favor of gay marriage.

ID: 776436
Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

I’m pretty sure she said yes.

ID: 776437

51. Nov. 7: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Jean Pieri / AP

Anthony Streiff, Alex Sand, and Nam Dorjee burst into tears after it was announced that voters had rejected a proposed amendment to Minnesota’s Constitution to ban gay marriage.

ID: 776355

52. Nov. 7: Seattle, Washington

Ted S. Warren / AP

People celebrate early election returns favoring Washington state Referendum 74, which legalized gay marriage.

ID: 776359

53. Nov. 10: Buenos Aires, Argentina


Two men embrace at a gay pride parade in Argentina.

ID: 776371

54. Nov. 25: New Delhi, India


Supporters and members of the LGBT community attend the 5th Delhi Queer Pride parade in New Delhi.

ID: 776379

55. Dec. 6: Seattle, Washington

David Ryder / Getty Images

Jane Abbott Lighty (who we saw earlier this year) and Pete-e Petersen embrace after receiving the first same-sex marriage license in Washington state at 12:01 a.m.

ID: 776384
Zachary Kaufman / AP

Paul Harris wipes away a tear as he and his partner of 39 years speak to the media after being the first same-sex couple to receive a marriage license in Clark County, Washington.

ID: 776390

57. Dec. 9: Seattle, Washington


Corianton Hale and Keith Bacon embrace after becoming the first couple to get married at Seattle City Hall in a mass wedding.

ID: 776398
Elaine Thompson / AP

Children hand flowers to newlyweds Liam and Richard Sauer-Wooden as the couple leave Seattle City Hall following their wedding there.

ID: 776404
Matt Stopera/Buzzfeed

Newlyweds ascend Seattle City after being one of 138 couples to get married on the first OFFICIAL day of gay marriage in Washington state.

ID: 776728
Matt Stopera/Buzzfeed

Couples dance their first dance to “At Last” by Etta James at a reception for newlywed couples in Seattle.

ID: 776727

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Deputy Editorial Director, Devout Member of the Church of Godney
Contact Matt Stopera at
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