Quote of the Day
“Hello, who am I talking to? Oh, Barack Obama? I wanted to thank you. I think your coming out for us made such a difference throughout the country.”
-- Edith Windsor, the plaintiff in United States v. Windsor, the case which led to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) yesterday. Windsor, with attorney Roberta Kaplan, sued the federal government because she was charged $363,000 in estate taxes following the death of her spouse, Thea Spyer, in 2009. If her spouse had been a man, the tax would have been nothing.
Ultimately, the Supreme Court ruled the following: “DOMA's principal effect is to identify a subset of state-sanctioned marriages and make them unequal. The principal purpose is to impose inequality ... DOMA undermines both the public and private significance of state-sanctioned same-sex marriages; for it tells those couples, and all the world, that their otherwise valid marriages are unworthy of federal recognition. This places same-sex couples in an unstable position of being in a second-tier marriage. The differentiation demeans the couple, whose moral and sexual choices the Constitution protects, see Lawrence, 539 U. S. 558, and whose relationship the State has sought to dignify. And it humiliates tens of thousands of children now being raised by same-sex couples. The law in question makes it even more difficult for the children to understand the integrity and closeness of their own family and its concord with other families in their community and in their daily lives.”