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Images of the Great National Kiss-In

I am SUCH a sucker for stories of people on love; this one is right up my sappy, romantic alley! 😉

Yesterday was the Great Nationwide Kiss-In and a day that the Mormon Church is going to find hard to put behind them.

SALT LAKE CITY – The Mormon church’s vigorous support for Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in California last year, has turned the Utah-based faith into a lightning rod for gay rights activism, including a nationwide “kiss-in” Saturday.

The event comes after gay couples here and in San Antonio and El Paso, Texas, were arrested, cited for trespassing or harassed by police for publicly kissing. In Utah, the July 9 trespassing incident occurred after a couple were observed by security guards on a downtown park-like plaza owned by the 13 million-member Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The court case was dismissed, but the kiss sparked a community backlash and criticism of the church.

“I don’t think that kiss would have turned out to be the kiss heard round the world if it were not for Proposition 8,” said Ash Johnsdottir, organizer of the Salt Lake City Kiss-In.

Below the fold are some of the stories, photos and videos of the day. Please feel free to share any others you may have as well…

(h/t Sean and Lurleen)Here is a really sweet montage of the San Francisco Kiss-In:


More than 100 gay people, their family members and civil rights activists gathered at Library Square on Saturday to kiss and tell the public that everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, has the right to acknowledge their loved ones with the little token of affection.

“I would just like people to think a little more about who they love and why instead of who they hate and why,” Charles Frost, a father and grandfather said after speaking to those gathered at the amphitheater as part of the Great Nationwide Kiss-In held this weekend in 50 cities nationwide and in Canada.

The en masse public display of affection was staged to replicate actual incidents in recent weeks in which gay couples in three cities, including Salt Lake City, were detained or arrested by security guards for what the couples say was kissing in public.

Denver and Washington D.C.

In Denver, same-sex and heterosexual couples gathered on the mall to kiss, hug and let others know that kissing, hugging and holding hands in public isn’t a crime and shouldn’t be treated like one.

“We’ve faced constant harassment, and our home has been vandalized,” said Pamela Thiele, 61, of Denver, who was joined by her partner, Lauren Fortmiller, 62. The couple married in California and have been together for eight years.

“I’ve been filled with so much sadness and despair and I’m grateful to do something constructive,” said Thiele, who said she heard about Saturday’s event after it was posted on the Colorado Queer Straight Alliance website.

In Washington, D.C., 22 people, many of them strangers to one another, gathered under the scorching sun on Washington’s National Mall to participate in the national smooch.

“This is America. A kiss on the cheek is OK,” said Ian Thomas, 26, of Leesburg, Va., who organized the Washington Kiss-In. “It’s got to be OK. If not, we’re in serious trouble.”

Chicago.  This link also has a great photo gallery of the event.

More than 50 people gathered in the plaza surrounding Cloud Gate during what seemed as one of the hottest days of the year with one thing on their minds – kissing!

Saturday afternoon marked the Great Nationwide Kiss-In where LGBT couples from around the country gathered at local public venues to send a message that “Kissing is Good” after three gay couples have recently been arrested for kissing in public.

The local ‘Kiss-in’ was organized by Join the Impact Chicago and even warranted a “warning” from the Illinois Family Institute that told parents to guard their children from such displays.

Michael also posted a wonderful video of the event in Chicago.

Oh noes, teh evul gayz r kising! Protekt yur childrun!!

What utter nonsense.

To ALL participants, I say this: “Kisses!”

* Related: The protest kissings continue