A Historic Day: Supreme Court Makes Crucial Rulings On Same-Sex Marriage

June 26, 2013  |  

Today, in two historic decisions the Supreme Court advanced LGBTQ rights. The first decision struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996.

The law barred recognition of same sex marriages by the Federal government when it came to issues of Social Security survivors’ benefits, insurance benefits, immigration and tax filing. In other words, legally married to someone of the same sex meant you weren’t entitled to any legal benefits.

The original law defined marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman as a husband and wife. The provision had been struck down by eight courts before the Supreme Court did the same today in the case United States vs. Windsor. 

Now, couples who are married in one of the 12 states that allow same-sex marriage will not be denied rights on the federal level. If couples are married in a state that doesn’t allow same sex marriage, they’ll be able to bring their grievances to the Supreme Court. This decision, many believe, will open up the door way to allow same sex rights or marriage in all 50 states.

The majority opinion was written by Justice Anthony Kennedy who was appointed Ronald Reagan in 1988.

Shortly after this decision came down the Supreme Court also ruled on California’s controversial Prop 8 law. The law essentially reversed the Supreme Court’s decision recognizing same-sex marriage. The court ruled that the activists who put Prop 8 on California ballots in 2008 did not have the constitutional authority to do so. The ruling essentially bans Prop 8 and allows gay couples to marry in the state of California but will not have an impact on other states across the nation.

A great, historic step toward equality for the country.

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  • Kam

    Finally! Some miles to go though. You can’t demand seperation of church and state, and then ask the state to “defend” a church issue. Congrats to all of my friends and family in the LGBT community. #Marriage Equality

  • jason vorhees

    Good work justices. Now those of you in the lgbt community and the rest of us have 1 last fight left. The absolute separation of church and state. How can anyone feel that a couple who has been together for years on end should not be able to benefit from their spouse financially because of sexual orientation? Even if you are anti-gay what part of having a partner for years and they pass away but cannot receive their pensions or ssi is right?

  • Guest360

    I’m so proud of my country today. You can feel whatever you want about gay marriage but I honestly don’t know how any can be for discrimination. To not fight for the rights of everyone leaves us ALL vulnerable for discriminatory laws to be passed against every type of minority in this country whether you’re black, young/old, female or what have you. Today was a large step towards equality and I couldn’t be happier.

  • Truth B. Told

    Damn shame, is what it is.