Monday, February 14, 2011

On Valentine's Day, NYTimes Urges DOMA Repeal

Valentine's Day is a holiday that is often bittersweet for committed LGBT couples who can express their love for one another like any other couple, but who are unable to solidify this commitment in a real marriage, with federal benefits and all.

It was heartening to open up the New York Times this morning and see the Grey Lady's editorial page take this opportunity to, once again, press the Obama administration on repealing the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act."  Take a look:

The 1996 Defense of Marriage Act is indefensible — officially sanctioned discrimination against one group of Americans imposed during an election year. President Obama seems to know that, or at least he has called on Congress to repeal it. So why do his government’s lawyers continue to defend the act in court?

The law, signed by President Bill Clinton, denies married same-sex couples the federal benefits granted to other married couples, including Social Security survivor payments and the right to file joint tax returns. When December’s repeal of the noxious “don’t ask, don’t tell” law goes into effect, gay, lesbian and bisexual Americans will be able to serve openly in the military but may not be entitled to on-base housing or a spouse’s burial in a national cemetery.

By now, such blatant discrimination should be presumed to be unconstitutional, and the Justice Department should finally say so. If conservatives in Congress want to enter the case to argue otherwise, so be it.
Reinforcing the notion that LGBT couples are not treated the same as straight couples is GetEQUAL, which is running a whole host of actions across the country to demand marriage equality, including "marriage counter" sit-ins, wherein gay couples will demand marriage certificates at their town halls and refuse to leave until they are granted their requests, or arrested.

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