California is the 31st U.S. state, admitted to the Union on September 9, 1850. It is the most populous U.S. state, and its largest city is Los Angeles, the second most populous city in the U.S. Its capital city is Sacramento.

LGBT Rights in California: Same-sex marriage was legal in California for a five-month period in 2008 until voters approved Proposition 8 in November of the same year, banning marriage between gay couples. The ban was struck down in 2013, after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to recognize the legal standing of the opponents of same-sex marriage, and same-sex marriages recommenced on June 28, 2013.

California grants extensive protections for LGBT people under state law, particularly for housing, credit, labor and/or employment, and joint adoption by same-sex couples. Hate crimes laws include protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.

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Gay Vietnamese protest exclusion from annual New Year’s ‘Tet’ parade

| Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Members of the local Vietnamese LGBT community march in the 2010 parade.
WESTMINSTER, Calif. -- A group of gay Vietnamese Americans and their supporters in Southern California's Orange County are asking to be allowed to participate in this weekend's Tet parade in celebration of the Vietnamese New Year.

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Gay marriage opponents running out of cash ahead of Supreme Court hearing

| Wednesday, January 30, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO --, the principal advocacy group backing California's Proposition 8, a 2008 voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, is suffering serious fundraising shortfalls, according to their attorney, Andrew Pugno.

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Reports of the death of Equality California ‘are greatly exaggerated’

| Wednesday, January 23, 2013
John O'Connor
The reports of the death of Equality California (EQCA) are greatly exaggerated, the nonprofit’s new boss tells San Diego Gay & Lesbian News. Like Mark Twain once did, John O’Connor, who became EQCA’s executive director about six weeks ago, is dispelling rumors about the health of the organization.

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Prop 8 proponents urge Supreme Court to uphold voters’ ban on same-sex marriage

| Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Supporters of California's Proposition 8 -- the 2008 voter approved ban on same-sex marriage -- urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday to preserve the state's definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, the first of many arguments the high court will hear this year on the issue of marriage equality.

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Boy Scouts camp counselor comes out in ‘It Gets Better’ video

| Friday, January 18, 2013
Derek Nance, a program director at the Mataguay Scout Ranch in San Diego, Calif., came out in this "It Gets Better" video posted on YouTube Thursday. Nance speaks out against the Boy Scouts of America’s anti-gay policies and says he knows “the time will come...

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Man arrested on felony hate crime charge for anti-gay graffiti at UC Berkeley

| Thursday, January 17, 2013
Anthony Garcia
BERKELEY, Calif. -- A California man faces a felony hate crime charge after officers spotted him spray painting anti-gay graffiti on campus buildings at the University of California-Berkeley. [caption id="attachment_72996" align="alignright" width="250"] Anthony Garcia[/caption] Anthony Garcia, 23, of Huntington Park, Calif., was booked on a...

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Oregon, California regulators require transgender health coverage

| Wednesday, January 16, 2013
SALEM, Ore. — Regulators in Oregon and California have quietly directed some health insurance companies to stop denying coverage for transgender patients because of their gender identity. The states aren't requiring coverage of specific medical treatments. But they told some private insurance companies they must...

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San Francisco lawmaker proposes renaming airport after Harvey Milk

| Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Harvey Milk
A San Francisco lawmaker on Tuesday will introduce legislation seeking to rename San Francisco International Airport for slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk. A charter amendment by Supervisor David Campos would place the proposal to rename the airport as Harvey Milk-San Francisco International Airport, and...

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First transgender contestant to compete for Miss California USA crown

| Friday, January 11, 2013
Kylan Wenzel
Among the 229 contestants competing for the title of Miss California USA will be Kylan Arianna Wenzel, a 26-year-old transgender woman from Century City, Calif. Wenzel will be the first ever transgender contestant after the Miss Universe Organization changed its rules in April last year — Miss Universe operates the Miss USA pageant, and the local pageants that determine the state delegates.

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Gay teen’s hopes for Eagle Scout rank denied again, despite support

| Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Ryan Andresen
A California gay teen — who spent more than 10 years working toward become an Eagle Scout — has had his hopes dashed once again in his quest to attain Scouting’s highest honor.

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