Press release from PFLAG National today:
GOOD-BYE DOMA AND PROPOSITION 8, HELLO MARRIAGE!
WASHINGTON – PFLAG National—the nation’s largest organization for families, friends and allies of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people – celebrated today’s victory at the United States Supreme Court, striking down both Section Three of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) as unconstitutional, and Proposition 8 on standing, which means the restoration of marriage equality to the state of California.
“Today, committed and loving LGBT couples and their families, friends and allies in California and across the country celebrate a huge step forward towards full acceptance and equality,” said PFLAG National Executive Director Jody M. Huckaby. “The Supreme Court’s dual rulings affirm what we at PFLAG have always known to be true: that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are fundamental rights for all Americans, and that denial of those rights seriously harms LGBT people and their families.”
Joining in the celebration were PFLAG members and supporters from across the country who had worked tirelessly to ensure that their loved ones would receive equal treatment under the law.
Said PFLAG Los Angeles President Mariette Sawchuk, “When my son Stephen came out he said to me, ‘Mom, all I have ever wanted is to have a family and to have a marriage like yours and Dad’s.’ Thanks to today’s ruling, my twin sons–both of whom are gay–will have the opportunity to share in an enduring, loving, legally recognized and protected marriage.”
Sawchuk was one of several PFLAG members who shared personal stories in an Amicus Brief submitted by PFLAG to the Supreme Court regarding Proposition 8.
Another PFLAGer who participated in the brief was Eric Brock, whose older brother Brandon is gay. While Eric, Brandon, and each of their spouses celebrated today’s rulings, they acknowledged that there is still work to be done; Brandon and his spouse, Alexis Caloza, were married in New York and reside in San Francisco, where–thanks to today’s ruling–their marriage is now legal again. But Eric still resides in Arkansas where the brothers were born and raised, a state whose constitution bans same-sex marriage and civil unions.
Said the younger Brock, “I am incredibly excited that my brother’s New York State marriage will be recognized by the Federal government and in the state of California where he now lives. This was a big step forward, but there is still a long way to go to reach full equality. We need to keep working so that If Brandon and Alexis should ever choose to return to Arkansas, the federal government would provide them all the benefits of marriage within that state…even if the state itself didn’t yet legally recognize their relationship.”
PFLAG National ED Huckaby agreed with Brock, stating, “PFLAG National and its vast chapter network will continue to move hearts and change minds to win full marriage equality at the federal level and in more states, and to grow support among the majority of Americans throughout the country. Together, we will continue to affirm the message that, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, love is love, family is family, and marriage is marriage.”