Happy Valentine’s Day, sinners and sodomites! Yesterday, a federal judge in Virginia ruled that the state’s 2006 constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. The ban is in violation of the equal protection and due process clauses in the United States Constitution’s 14th amendment. Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen’s wrote in the ruling, “Our Constitution declares that ‘all men’ are created equal. Surely this means all of us.” She also singled out the ban for “unlawful prejudice.” (This ruling also means VA has to acknowledge same-sex marriages which are legal in other states.)
Earlier this month, VA’s Attorney General had made clear that he would not defend the same-sex marriage ban on behalf of the state. Gay marriage opponents are already planning to appeal the decision and it’s likely this could head to the Supreme Court. [New York Times, CNN, NPR]
Abbreviated Lady News today! Back to your regularly scheduled Lady News on Monday. Have a fab weekend!
- A U.S. District Court Judge has struck down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage, saying it violates the U.S. Constitution’s equal protection guarantee. [Gay Salt Lake]
- An open letter to white feminists on prisons, borders, safety and privilege. [AlterNet]
- You should definitely take the time to read through the #FreeMarisa hashtag on Twitter right now, which is advocating for the release of Marisa Alexander, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot to scare off her abusive husband. [Twitter]
- Fact: Black women are twice as likely as white women to die from breast cancer — this New York Times article examines why that racial disparity exists and what’s being done about it. [NY Times]
- On cynicism, calling out, and creating movements that don’t leave people behind. [Feministing]