Wednesday, February 23, 2011

WOWZZER. . . .R E A D T H I S ;-)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: News Alert <>
Date: Wed, Feb 23, 2011 at 12:51 PM
Subject: News Alert: Justice Department to Stop Defending Federal Law on Gay Marriage

Breaking News Alert
The New York Times
Wed, February 23, 2011 -- 12:50 PM ET

Justice Department to Stop Defending Federal Law on Gay Marriage

President Obama, in a major legal policy shift, has directed
the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of
Marriage Act
- the 1996 law that bars federal recognition of
same-sex marriages - against lawsuits challenging it as

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. on Wednesday sent a
letter to Congress to inform them that the Justice Department
will now take the position in court that the Defense of
Marriage Act should be struck down as a violation of gay
couples' rights to equal protection under the law.

"The President and I have concluded that classifications
based on sexual orientation warrant heightened scrutiny and
that, as applied to same-sex couples legally married under
state law" a crucial provision of the Defense of Marriage Act
is unconstitutional, Mr. Holder wrote.

Read More:

About This E-Mail
You received this message because you are signed up to receive breaking news
alerts from

To unsubscribe, change your e-mail address or to sign up for daily headlines
or other newsletters, go to:
620 Eighth Ave.
New York, NY 10018

Copyright 2011 The New York Times Company


Justin Dunes said...

OK, J. . . now, how do YOU read this for us not lawyers? ;-))

You make things simple and understandable helping us not to read too much into this. . . .


Richard said...

Welp, since I am one of those lawyer creatures, let's just say that it's a limited step forward. I just read the Attorney General's letter and it is limited to those cases which involve cases where gay partners are legally married under state law. For those of us who reside in states where this is not possible, we're still out in the cold.

JustinO'Shea said...

THANKS, RICHARD. . . hmmm. . .can we say it is a beginning step? and can/might lead to better?

Does it mean that those of us in Massachusetts who can legally marry will have ALL the rights/privileges of heterosexual marriage as far as FEDERAL law goes? Is that one of the benefits?

A quick rushing read first time sounds very different with a slower read.

Thanks for any and ALL imput.


Gary Kelly said...

If a heterosexual couple gets married, and then one of the pair later decides to undergo a sex-change operation to become the same sex as their partner, is the marriage still valid under the law?


JustinO'Shea said...

Who cares???


J said...

While it is always troubling when an attorney general announces he is not going to do what is his duty under law--to enforce and defend the laws that have been enacted-- I think this is the exception to the rule. There are just too many states that formally celebrate and recognise gay unions, and the 14th Amendment and the privileges and immunities clause have rendered this law, so recently enacted, indefensible.
This is just more evidence of how this dramatic revolution in civil rights in this country has been affected almost under the radar. Not too long ago this action would have caused national outrage. Now no one seems to give a damn except the gay wedded and betrothed. Isn't it blessed?

Gary Kelly said...

I'll read J's comment again in the morning when I'm fresh.

Richard said...

Justin, in response to your question about Federal rights, the answer is probably so. One of the cases involves two lesbians in CT. I believe that one of them died and the other party went to court because she would have had to pay taxes on insurance proceeds, etc. which a surviving str8 spouse would not.