Our voices are hoarse from cheering and our feet are tired from marching, but our hearts are full and we’re ready for what comes next. There’s no time to waste! June’s Supreme Court marriage victory off ered soaring language about equality, dignity and our common humanity.
Was it only in October that the Supreme Court allowed four appeals court victories to stand and then marriage became legal in 17 new states, bringing the total to 36? Since our last issue of Impact magazine, Lambda Legal attorneys and other staff worked day and night to secure marriage equality in Arizona, Nevada, South Carolina and West Virginia, and Puerto Rico.
Workplace discrimination is a critical issue for our community. From the thousands of calls for help we receive at Lambda Legal each year, we know that employment problems are among the most frequent faced by LGBT and HIV-positive people.
Happy Pride! Every summer since the Stonewall Uprising in 1969, we celebrate our community, our pride and our commitment to equality. Lately, we also celebrate how much the world has changed—because of our pride and our work together for all these years.
The year 2013 brought us many stunning events in the march toward marriage equality. After the excitement of the Supreme Court decisions last June, there were victories in New Jersey, Illinois and Hawai‘i—Lambda Legal fought long, punishing battles in all three states—and a holiday-season win in New Mexico. Then Utah became the next frontier for marriage equality.
There's no doubt we are still feeling the positive reverberations of June 26th. Since the Supreme Court’s momentous ruling striking down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), same-sex couples across the country are exploring and taking advantage of exciting new options, benefits and responsibilities.
June 26 was already an important date in LGBT legal history—it was the day 10 years ago when the Supreme Court struck down all remaining state sodomy laws in Lambda Legal’s historic Lawrence v. Texas victory.
When DOMA and Prop 8 are struck down, we at Lambda Legal will celebrate this huge victory and important step forward. But as we enter our fifth decade of fighting for equality, we know that our work is far from over.
As this issue of Impact goes to press, we await the outcome of historic votes about marriage for same-sex couples in four states, as we also await word on whether the Supreme Court will consider cases that we hope finally strike down Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
Friends and Family throughout the
country are making Pride plans—figuring out what
to wear, which train or whose car to take, whether
to bring the stroller or the dogs, the best vantage
point to enjoy the festivities, where to go afterward
to continue the celebration. The crowds, the energy
and the astonishing diversity and creativity in our
community all bring emotional uplift.