Supreme Court's Historic DOMA Decision: How Marriage Will Change in America

This Just In 46

marriage equalityAmerica is finally a place where there's liberty and justice for ALL! In a landmark case, the Supreme Court of the United States has declared a key portion of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. Ding, dong, DOMA is (almost) dead, and marriage equality is alive and well!

Up until today, the act, which has been on the books since the Clinton administration, prevented same-sex married couples from getting the same benefits as straight couples. Talking about gay rights was controversial, so controversial that SCOTUS saved its ruling for today, the last day of the high court's current session.

So what does the 5-4 vote from the justices mean for America?

Simply put, it means that the federal government can no longer deny gay couples the rights of their straight counterparts. 

Killed by SCOTUS was "section three" of DOMA, the portion that allowed the federal government to discriminate against gays and lesbians based solely on their sexuality. Challengers argued that the section violates the constitution's "equal protection" promise, a fact confirmed by the high court today. Some 1,100 federal laws, including veterans' benefits, family medical leave, and tax laws, will be affected.

America? This is good news! This is a promise from our Supreme Court (and in no small way from the Obama Administration, which vowed not to fight for DOMA any longer) that gays and lesbians will no longer be treated as second class citizens simply because they were born loving people of the same gender.

Hopefully, this is news that will help in the fight to tear down the rest of DOMA, including a provision that allows the 30-plus states that still won't pass some sort of marriage equality law to ignore the legal (!) marriages gays and lesbians have gotten in the 22 states where same-sex marriages are recognized.


But hey, we have to start somewhere. And the death of DOMA's Section Three at the hands of the Supreme Court is somewhere good.

What is your take on this landmark case? Are you celebrating?


Image via Giullaume Paumier/Flickr

discrimination, marriage equality, supreme court


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LostS... LostSoul88

It's about damn time!!!! YAY!!!! I have a gay aunt even though she doesn't have a partner I am happy for her if she wanted to get married, although she already lives in a state that recently allowed gay marriage. 


nonmember avatar kaerae

Fantastic! A great day for logic and reason over fear and bigotry!

keelh... keelhaulrose

I have friends planning weddings as I write this. Equality for all! The fight isn't over until all Americans are viewed equally under the law, but this is a great step.

miche... micheledo

Still not liberty and justice for the unborn. :( Somehow they are still a group of people labeled not fully people.

nonmember avatar ZMommy

Awesome! :-)

fleur... fleurdelys3110

@Michelado...That's because they aren't people. They're fetuses who will later become people.

Anyway, the Supreme Court has been getting it right the past couple days with these moves for equality! First, they are slowly starting to chip away at the inherently discriminatory and unequal affirmative action, and now the people of California will be allowed to love and marry whomever they wish. What a great week!

bella... bellacazzate

Micheledo, that is derailing and 100% a non sequitur. People aren't truly "pro-life" (meaning full, unwavering support of a child in every social class after birth until the age of 18). They're pro-birth and that is a massive problem and far worse for society than abortion could ever be. 

In RELATED news: a great victory for equality today! LostSoul88 has been getting some great use of that spinny icon!

nonmember avatar kaerae

@Michele - because they aren't.

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