How long have you’ve been waiting to hear those words?
Well Edie Windsor has waited over 40 years with her romantic partner in order to say those words in Toronto in 2007. They both lived in New York, which before legalizing same-sex marriage last year, did recognize such unions to be legal if they were performed out of state.
However, the federal government does not recognize those same-sex partners as legally wed; and when Windsor’s partner died in 2009, she was required to pay inheritance taxes of over $300,000.
On the other hand, Britney Spears married childhood friend Jason Alexander in 2004 and annuled it in 55 hours (which is still the shortest marriage in history, I believe?); barely 10 years later, she has separated twice and has been engaged maybe 3 or 4 times.
So the Supreme Court (#SCOTUS) is supposed to be considering the arguments for same sex marriage; and the twitter feeds has been loaded with breaking tweets regarding Justice Scalia’s views about legislating from the courthouse or Justice Kennedy being the wild card in the mix.
DOMA or Defense of Marriage Act was passed under the liberal Clinton administration and restricts federal benefits (including taxes) to heterosexual married couples, despite the states’ individual laws. Prop 8 was passed in California, by a ballot referendum invalidating same-sex marriages in the state.
It’s interesting how this case is being argued in front of #SCOTUS — Equality vs. Tradition.
The Traditional arguments that Charles Cooper argued
Marriage is for Procreation (Thus, having sex within the marriage is only to have babies, not for intimacy or pleasure)
It is harmful for children to be raised by same-sex couples
Government should not interfere in defining a sanctimonious ritual (this for some reason was not argued in front of SCOTUS). Everyone, for legal reasons should have their civil union registered (inheritance, divorce, etc…) and have your church or faith describe your union.
Equality Arguments said by Ted Olson:
Marriage is a private right, in which all things–procreation is not required to get married. Prohibiting marriage violates constitutional liberties and one’s fundamental pursuit of happiness
Justice Scalia asked, “When did it become unconstitutional to exclude homosexuals from marriage?” Olson replied, “When did it become unconstitutional to exclude interracial marriage?” Thus, bringing us to the 14th amendment and what I like to call the Thurgood Marshall approach.
For those of you who remember your history (Brown v. Board and Loving Case) both civil rights case were tried as unconstitional per the 14th amendment.
The idea being that even for states that have “civil unions” and “domestic partnerships”, these titles will never be equal to the way society views marriage.
Do you celebrate a domestic-versary?
I now pronounce you partner and partner etc…..
Say Yes to The Dress
Having a separate title for something that is supposed to give you the same benefits is not equal to the real thing. People don’t dream about their union day where they enter a civil agreement. They dream about weddings and marital bliss.
Or as Thurgood Marshall argued in ’56: Separate can never be Equal.
So how do you think #SCOTUS will decide this case: Tradition or Equality?
You can view/listen to the entire oral arguments here
Comment or Tweet me your thoughts! Enjoy the long weekend.
© 2012 -2013 S. C Rhyne