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We had some callers tonight who made an argument I've heard time and time again, that the word "marriage" carries a religious connotation. I don't understand where people get this idea. "Marriage" is not a "religious" word. Those who choose to say "I do" at City Hall, or on a beach, or in a park, are still taking part in a "marriage." If anything, I say the word is more an institution of government than anything else. Even when you get married in a church, which I did, you still have to get that "marriage" recognized by the government. This argument is invalid in my opinion.
It's a landmark day for same-sex couples. The Supreme Court struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act today, which denies federal benefits to married gay couples. In the final session of the term, the Court ruled the provision that has kept same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits is unconstitutional. Same-sex marriage has been adopted by 12 states and the District of Columbia.
The Supreme Court also cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriages in California. President Obama praised the rulings today, saying DOMA "treated loving, committed gay and lesbian couples as a separate and lesser class of people." Opponents hope states continue to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. What do you say?
Should same-sex couples be eligible for federal benefits? Are you pleased or disappointed in the Supreme Court's ruling? How significant is this decision in the fight for equal rights for gay couples? What message does the ruling send to the country and the world?
Send your thoughts using the link above.
I didn't have a dog in this fight -- I'm straight and almost past the age where marriage is ever going to be a factor in my life -- but even I approved of the Court's decisions in these two cases, and the approach that they took. On the Proposition 8 case, it was always questionable if the people defending the referendum had standing to go into court on that basis, and the Chief Justice disposed of that matter in short order, in a classic conservative ruling (and make no mistake about it -- whatever its results on the ground, the Proposition 8 ruling is truly conservative by any definition of the word) -- perhaps the lower federal courts will now show greater courage in evaluating such questions in future cases. On the DOMA case, on the other hand, a majority of the justices ruled that bigotry, tradition-based prejudice, and playing to one's political base (and its prejudices) do not comprise a compelling state (or federal) interest that would justify abridging the fundamental rights as citizens of members of an unpopular minority.
All of this, both rulings and their reasoning, are beautifully representative of precisely what we have courts for in the first place. I have to applaud the court's actions today.
Upper West Side
I know this is a sensitive subject but many of the states already know that
they could not pass the same sex marriage. In New York Cuomo took it upon
himself and went behind closed doors and I might ad that Christine Quinn
was there in Albany for a few days ducking the media.
In California the people voted and they spoke and we should have had the
same privilege to do the same.
So now it’s whatever a liberal voter wants they automatically have man
made laws passed to accommodate their needs.
From what I gather in all of this it is most definitely POLITICAL without a
Whatever demands that were made by today's decision were given and the
same thing is happening with the illegal aliens. These politicians are just
out for the votes and we are in a terrible financial situation in this country
and what happened with all the jobs they were suppose to create? They
just go along collecting their pay checks and here we are having a tuff
time of it.
So in the end we that are TAX PAYING AMERICAN CITIZENS END UP
FOOTING THE BILL = WE ARE CALLED ALL KINDS OF NAMES.
WHERE DOES ALL OF THIS END.
WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL THE LAWS PERTAINING TO A MARRIAGE
BETWEEN A MAN AND A WOMAN? I MIGHT AD THAT THERE ARE
Very disheartening to say the least.
I applaud this ruling in favor of same-sex marriages because it recognizes, not a literal definition of the word, but the lifetime commitment between two adult individuals whereas the ease by which people divorce today is way more detrimental to the "sanctity" of marriage and its significance.
As a gay man I am thrilled
We are not second class citizens
And now the courts apparently
Cohabiting arrangements of any kind should be a strictly private matter with the a certificate defining the terms of arrangement. The government should keep it's manipulating hands out of it except to enforce the certificate should one partner challenge the other in court.
Port Richmond, SI
LGBTQ PERSONS HAVE RIGHTS TOO. INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO BE WRONG. I BELIEVE IN DOMA AND I WILL ALWAYS FOLLOW MY HEART.
I'm a straight woman ... It's my birthday today I received many wonderful gifts but this decision is the best of all.. The court got it right and I am very happy for all gay people and their families
The best thing about being Gay was never having to grow up, and now this! Before you know it my folks are going to be whining, "So Frank, when are you going to marry Ernie and make him an honest man?" Oy, vey.
i'm elated about the Supreme Court decision.
finally, some good news!
I think today's Supreme Court decision is right, fair and long overdo. Gay people contribute to this country's government just as much as straight people do and they deserve the same protection and rights as straight people.
What I do NOT understand is when people who are against gay marriage bring up how it will harm straight marriages and the birth of children. No one is trying to stop straight marriages OR the births of children! Straight people will still be able to marry and procreate. They are simply trying to secure equal rights for everyone, both gay and straight.
Staten Island, NY
While this ruling doesn't affect me personally, working the heritage pride parade over the yrs. I observed that this event has become a family event with lots of little kids participating with their parents.
The gay community always takes in our "throw away children". I applaud them for that.
And equal rights for everyone.
Who in their right mind thinks that it makes sense that States should allow a majority group vote on the rights of the minority group???
this is why we have written law and judicial branch to interpret these laws.
Like It or not.... when you live in a society in which the majority rules, minority rights will always be protected. this is what democracy is all about.
BTW -- big thanks to all the straight people who supported this movement w/o your support this would have never happened!!!
Keep your religion out of my laws- this is not a christian nation!
Equality for everyone!
I have been trying to call for an hour. I am happy by the court decision for my gay friends in America, but in my country India, marriage is equal to monogamous committed relationships, but here in New York, 95% of gay men in ‘relationship’ are not monogamous, they turn to hook apps like Grindr frequently. Will that change now with legal gay marriages?
If marriage is strictly religious, then we should get rid of all government-sanctioned marriages and swap them out for civil unions. Issue solved!
it is so upsetting to hear the comments of joe from pelham bay...this is not a religious issue it is a civil rights issue. marriage is not just a catholic issue..there are civil marriages. i am a catholic woman married to a jewish male. is that wron g?the pope has nothing to do with united state government issues..
marge from brooklyn
It's a shame in a society where children and adolescents have to worry about Poverty, poor education , racism, bullying,police brutality,predatory teachers ,inflation of cost,crime on the streets with everything attacking there confidence already,and now insecurity of just being yourself? attacking our phycological way of thinking by calling up down and down up,in a society where gays have the right to be themselves and be happy which I do agree with, but i feel this sends a negative message to family's , young children and young people everywhere, marriage is the union of man and a women united becoming one expressing love, and keeping society going for generations to come, it's not between man and man or women and women or man and animal or women and inatoment object as Americans that's there peragotive but that doesn't mean its a marriage, the fact that you can hear and read this message means a man and a women got together at one point. congratulations
Supreme court you just crippled the next generation apt toe bit more,