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Reactions from DOMA/Prop 8 rulings

Reactions from DOMA/Prop 8 rulings

Susan Russell in The Huffington Post, says that the two decisions cannot be separated from what the court did yesterday:

Sadly, those two steps forward came just a day after the same Supreme Court took one step back by striking down a central part of the Voting Rights Act — and so our delight in the movement forward on marriage equality is tempered by our distress at the dismantling of voter rights protections.

Nevertheless, as a California priest and pastor, I rejoice that my church can now offer both equal blessing and equal protection to the couples who come to us for marriage. As an American citizen, I am proud that my country is continuing to evolve toward that “more perfect union” where liberty and justice applies to all — not just some — Americans. And as an activist committed to the audacious goal of full equality for LGBT Americans, I am celebrating today’s rulings as incremental victories toward that not-yet “mission accomplished” goal. We did not get the whole enchilada — but there is enough guacamole for me.

Of course I would have loved to see the Supreme Court issue a broad ruling on marriage reflecting what the majority of Americans already know: When we all can share in the freedom to marry, it makes our families stronger, it makes our communities stronger, and it makes our nation stronger. And while today’s decisions by the Court fell short of that broad ruling, they inarguably moved us down the road toward the day when marriage discrimination will end up where it belongs: in the dustbin of history.

Other reactions so far from the rulings (some excerpted from longer statements):

Katharine Jefferts Schori – Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop:

The unmistakable movement toward civil marriage equality in the states over the past decade reflects the will of the people in those states to grant equal rights and dignity under the law to all married couples and families, and today’s decision will appropriately allow those families to be recognized under federal law as well. At the same time, the Court’s withholding of judgment on the ultimate constitutional question of whether a state may ban same-sex marriage reflects the fact that this conversation will continue to evolve in coming years. I trust that Episcopalians will contribute actively and faithfully to this conversation, particularly as our nation begins to discern the many practical implications of today’s decisions for areas of our shared life, ranging from immigration law to family rights.

Gay Clark Jennings – President of the House of Deputies:

“Today’s rulings will allow more people of all faiths to see what we in the Episcopal Church have seen for decades: Same-sex couples and their families are evidence of the goodness of God’s creation. They bless our congregations and communities immeasurably, and we have all learned from their steadfast love for one another and the evidence of God’s goodness that they show us.”

Jane Shaw – Dean of Grace Cathedral, San Francisco:

We at Grace Cathedral rejoice in today’s Supreme Court decisions concerning marriage equality. Now that marriage is a legal right afforded to all Californians equally, we are pleased to begin performing legal same-sex marriage ceremonies as soon as the state of California allows. As it has been our firm belief that all are loved by God equally, Grace Cathedral has performed same-sex blessing ceremonies since 1999 in the spirit of advocacy and example.

Grace Cathedral’s clergy and staff stand ready to welcome all committed couples to marry in the beautiful, sacred setting and Episcopal tradition of this cathedral.

Diana Butler Bass – author, speaker and educator:

OK: It is now time. My father was gay. Yes, he and my mom were married for 35 years. But my family wasn’t your standard 1960s crew. It was complex, painful, and beautiful. And it would be so different today. I loved them both so much.

Mariann Budde – Bishop of Washington:

Scripture teaches us that God shows no partiality. Today our country has moved closer to this vision of equality and unity, and I give thanks for our progress. Now, as always, the ability to create a more just and caring country lies with us. Heartened by today’s decisions, may we recommit ourselves to this difficult but holy work.

Jeffrey Lee – Bishop of Chicago:

“These Supreme Court rulings concern civil marriage, not the Christian sacrament. But I invite Christians who may struggle with the decision to consider that the union of two people in heart, body and mind is capable of signifying the never failing love of God in Christ for the church and the world. These faithful unions, no matter the sex of the partners, can be sources and signs of grace, both for the couple and for the wider community. When we see and celebrate those signs, we testify to the love and mercy of God that overcomes all our divisions and differences.”

Robert Wright – Bishop of Atlanta:

Every human being is made in God’s image. And, God has made us different. Today the Supreme Court moves the country forward in respecting the dignity of every human being. Jesus told us we were to love God and to love neighbor as we love ourselves. The work is not done. The circle must continue to widen. With these rulings accomplished, my prayer is that we as a nation also focus on care for our veterans, support for our aged and education and hope for our young and poor.

Paul Fromberg – rector of St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco:

Joy. My hands are shaking. My heart is racing. its hard to put into words what this means. Gratitude for what has happened. Resolve for all that we still must accomplish. Unending love to my husband.


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Kurt Wiesner

An excellent statement from Trinity Cathedral Cleveland:

“We are elated by the Supreme Court’s ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. We look forward to the resumption of same-sex marriage in California and are committed to working for marriage equality in Ohio. At the same time, we are disappointed with the court’s decision regarding The Voting Rights Act. The court’s ruling on affirmative action leaves us and others confused. We would have preferred a more definitive and clear determination in support of correcting decades of discrimination against minorities. These decisions remind us that it is incumbent that we remain vigilant in working to promote God’s kingdom on earth. In a matter of days, one group of citizens achieved the long-sought federal protections granted all other married couples while another achieved the right to marry the person they love without regard for gender. At the same time, African-Americans saw the protections that have ensured truly equal participation in the electoral process eradicated.”

Weiwen Ng

Same-sex binational couples who live or move to a state which allows same-sex marriage should now gain immigration benefits (i.e. the American partner can sponsor the non-US partner for a family visa).

It is very unfortunate that the Republicans are not willing to allow a similar provision in immigration reform.

Nonetheless, this is a BFD.

Now, we need to start overturning same-sex marriage bans.

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