Same-sex marriage (SSM)
2004-2008: Early developments in various states
In this web site, "SSM" refers to same-sex marriage
"If marriage means everything, it means absolutely
nothing." Dr. James C. Dobson, of Focus on the Family.
||"A loving man and woman in a committed relationship can marry. Dogs,
no matter what their relationship, are not allowed to marry. How should
society treat gays and lesbians in committed relationships? As dogs or as
humans?" A posting to an Internet mailing list; used by permission of the
2004-AUG: FL: Two lawsuits filed:
One is trying to force the state to recognize the validity of a marriage
solemnized in Ontario, Canada. The other is trying to force the state to
recognize a marriage completed in Massachusetts. Neither succeeded.
2004-AUG-26: CT: Lawsuit filed: Seven same-sex couples applied for marriage
licenses in Madison, in the central part of Connecticut. They were
refused. They filed a lawsuit on AUG-25 in New Haven Superior Court,
naming town officials and J. Robert Galvin, the Commissioner of the
state's Department of Public Health. Mary Bonauto,
of Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, (GLAD), is the lead
attorney for the plaintiffs. This is the group that successfully
challenged marriage laws in Massachusetts. She commented: "In the
end, this is a case about real people with real families asking their
government to treat them fairly." she expects the case to take three
years. 1 Connecticut became one of the earliest states to legalize SSM.
2006-JUL-07: GA: Referendum upheld: A
referendum passed by 76% of the voters in 2004-NOV amended the state
constitution to forbid same-sex marriage. A trial court declared it to be
invalid in 2006-MAY. The reason given is that the wording violated the
single-subject rule. It addressed two topics -- marriage and civil unions --
about which voters may well have different opinions. But the referendum allowed only a
single yes/no response. The
Georgia Supreme Court unanimously overturned the trial court ruling, and sustained the
amendment. Governor Perdue said:
"We don't do a referendum very often. But when we do a referendum
such as a Constitutional amendment, I think we need be very respectful
of the people's voice and listen to that. I think the Supreme Court has
done that and I'm very grateful for their action and their affirmation
of the people's voice in overturning the trial court's opinion."
"Perdue also said that he hopes gay Georgians do not feel
marginalized by the decision. He said they are free to work and live
their lives here they simply can not marry in the state of Georgia."
As of 2013, Georgia still prohibits SSMs.
2006-JUL-07: NY: Court says right to marry does not exist: The Court of Appeals in
New York state heard arguments favoring marriage equity in 2006-MAY. In
July, they handed down their ruling. They found that the state's "one-man,
one-woman" definition of marriage did not violate the constitutional rights
of same-sex couples. They also stated than any changes would have to be made
by the legislature. Jay Weiser is a law professor at Baruch University who
helped write a brief in support of gay marriage for the New York City Bar
Association. He said that:
"New York's decision is a fairly narrow view of
what guarantees the state constitution provides.... So far, the
courts are mixed but the majority of cases have passed defense of
marriage or constitutional amendments barring same-sex marriages."
Alan Van Capelle, executive director of The Empire State
Pride Agenda, a New York state gay-positive civil liberties group, said:
"This community has never been handed anything for free.
I know that winning marriage will be a long battle ... and the gay
community has the stamina to win gay marriage in New York."
Glen Lavy, of the Alliance Defense Fund, an anti-gay legal
"I don't have a crystal ball. You don't know what the
rule is going to be, but I did not think the court was going to reverse
the decision because of how strong the lower court decisions were. We
keep hearing from the opponents to redefine marriage that they have a
clear legal trend moving their way. But really what we have is a clear
trend moving the other way. We only have one clear court that is an
outlier - and that's Massachusetts." 3
2008-MAY-14: CA: Court makes SSM legal: By a 4:3 decision, the California Supreme Court overturned Proposition 22 -- a plebescite that had the force of law and which banned
SSM -- and legalized SSM in the state. On election day in 2008-NOV, Proposition 8 was narrowly approved by the voters. It once more made SSMs unavailalbe in the state. A subsequent lawsuit overturned Prop. 8 and is before the U.S. Supreme Court. More details.
"Gays Sue Connecticut Over Same Sex Unions," 1010 WINS, 2004-AUG-26, at:
"Georgia upholds gay marriage ban," UPI, 2006-JUL-07, at:
Ron Scherer, "Two states say 'no' to gay marriage," Christian Science Monitor, 2006-JUL-07, at:
Copyright © 2004 to 2013 by Ontario Consultants on Religious
Originally written: 2004-AUG-16
Latest update: 2013-MAY-10
Author: B.A. Robinson