A woman goes through life with a number of labels that she doesn’t have any control over, either by birth or by society’s imposition. But one label she should get to choose is whether she wants to be someone’s “wife” or not. This should be a right for all of us.
A recent piece on Salon.com by soon-to-be-married author Tracy Clark-Flory about the word “wife” really pissed me off. Clark-Flory wrote about going over the language of her wedding ceremony script with her fiancé and getting to the part that says “I now pronounce you husband and wife.”
Husband? Wife? I could barely conceal my gagging sounds. He said something to the effect of, “Ew, gross.”
It makes me feel like Betty Draper, like I should be fetching his slippers and a scotch on the rocks — and remembering to get the roast bird out of the oven. (In reality, I’ve only just recently expanded my cooking repertoire beyond Kraft mac ‘n’ cheese and things you put in the microwave. He, however, will roast a chicken and make a rustic tart from scratch — all in one night.) I am a daughter, partner and friend — but a wife? I can’t help but imagine saying “I’m his wife” with heavy air quotes, a roll of the eyes or exaggerated feminine cheer.
Clark-Flory then expresses concern that the Middle English/Old English terms for “wife” and “husband” translate, roughly, to “vagina” and “householder.” It’s not that I don’t understand Clark-Flory’s discomfort with both words or their histories (although dredging up the Old English definition? really?). But I’m uneasy with how glib she was about that choice when so many people are scrambling to have the same one. Keep reading »
On Wednesday morning the Supreme Court ruled to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s anti-gay marriage Prop 8. After months of waiting for a decision, gay marriage supporters can breathe a sigh of relief.
Photos from around the Supreme Court and in San Francisco’s City Hall capture the ebullient mood of gay rights supporters on hearing the decision. Click through to see how gay marriage advocates are celebrating the win.
In a huge victory for gay marriage supporters, the Supreme Court ruled 5-to-4 on Wednesday that the Defense of Marriage Act and Prop 8 are both unconstitutional.
According to the SCOTUS blog the judges ruled in the following fashion:
Roberts dissents. Scalia dissents. DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.
According to the ruling, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, were all in the minority.
The statute was ruled invalid, according to the Supreme Court’s blog, because:
“DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled ot recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty. The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity. By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others.”;
Keep reading »
The Supreme Court will hear two landmark gay rights cases today: they’re hearing arguments on Proposition 8 and the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Court critics say the cases could go a number of ways, and despite the fact that both cases will get relatively little time in front of the judges (just 60 minutes and 110 minutes, respectively), gay marriage advocates have turned out in droves to show support. Of course, there are anti-gay protestors, too — the most hilarious sign from the other side reads “God Hates Your Feelings.” We’ll keep you updated on any court decisions. [Photo: Getty Images]
Great gay news today: The U.S. appeals court of New York struck down the contentious Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage as strictly that which can take place between a man and a woman.
In a 2-to-1 decision, the panel ruled in favor of Edith Windsor, an 83-year-old lesbian who argued that the law was discriminatory. Windsor’s suit — filed by the American Civil Liberties Union — stems from her relationship with longtime partner Thea Clara Spyer. The two were engaged in 1967 and married in Canada in 2007. When Spyer died in 2009, Windsor was unable to claim her estate, because the pair’s marriage wasn’t legally recognized in the United States. Instead, Windsor was forced to pay a $363,000 estate tax — a fee she wouldn’t have had to pay if her marriage had been recognized.
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For all my issues with “House Hunters International” (namely that most of the people featured on it are entitled assholes), I am still an avid fan of the show and watch it every chance I get. The vast majority of episodes feature rich, white, heterosexual retired couples looking for a luxury condo in a beachfront gated community, but apparently this coming Monday, the House Hunters will have a much more interesting–and tragic–backstory. Keep reading »
A federal law that denies a host of benefits to gay married couples is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court ruled today. The 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston said the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman, discriminates against gay couples. The court agreed with a lower court judge who ruled in 2010 that the law is unconstitutional because it interferes with the right of a state to define marriage and denies married gay couples federal benefits given to heterosexual married couples, including the ability to file joint tax returns. Read more…