Last night I took a few minutes to clean out a closet. I came across the front page section of the San Francisco Chronicle from May 2008. The front page was proclaiming victory in the initial Proposition 8 ballot item. Yes......all gay and lesbian couples could marry in the state of California! It was an exciting time and I was very happy to be in San Francisco the very day of that landmark vote.
Here we are five years later and we saw Prop 8 challenged and overturned just to be overturned again by the U.S. Supreme Court. We saw the Defense of Marriage Act - otherwise known as DOMA - crumble into a fine dust and scattered through the streets of Washington DC. We have even seen a few more states step forward and legalize marriage for all gays and lesbian couples. I think the total state count may be 12. Ok....that's not a lot, but it is 20%!
Now that the federal government will recognize those unions in those 12 states, I have two friends who will take the plunge themselves in the next year with their partners. In both cases, it was something that finally made sense in their 11+ year relationships. I look forward to seeing them both married and continuing their relationships as they have all of these years. It is truly a wonderful thing.
In my tri-state area, Ohio, Kentucky nor Indiana allow for gay marriage. In Ohio, this ban on gay marriage is being challenged by two gentlemen who flew to Baltimore to be married. One of the gentlemen is terminally ill from ALS and his partner would like their life to be recognized as a married couple - with all of the federal benefits and protections that it allows every other married couple. Read their story. If they are successful with their court battle (and I fully expect this to go up to the Ohio Supreme Court or higher) and Ohio ends their ban, there will be a lot of very happy gay and lesbians in the area.
It is my hope that I will be one of those happy souls as well. :)