Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker received huge support from gay rights activists and their supporters with his ruling. Even the Governor himself Arnold Schwarzenegger took a break from his revitalized movie career to describe the ruling “as a step toward freedom and equality.”
Walker was forced into a ruling after two gay couples believed that their constitutional rights had been violated by the ban. During the former U.S. Solicitor General Theodore Olson’s closing arguments he said this of the ban, “it vindicates the rights of a minority of our citizens to be treated with decency and respect and equality in our system.”
While gay couples and their supporters celebrated a major victory across the nation, gay marriages are still not permitted in California. According to Judge Walker, both sides have until Friday to submit new arguments on whether the ruling should stand.
Unfortunately for gay activists an appeal can be made. A group with conservative ties called “Protect Marriage” said it would appeal the ruling to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
After the Supreme Court legalized gay marriages in 2009, 18,000 couples were married over five months. Then came the controversial Proposition 8 vote which narrowly passed ending the marriages. The supporters of Proposition 8 maintain that this is the only way to protect traditional marriages and child bearing.
It is interesting how a state that prides itself on being progressive in so many ways. Still lags far behind when it comes to the equal rights of its gay citizens.
What do you think?
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