Friday, June 28, 2013

After DOMA, the fight for marriage equality moves to the states

By Mustang Bobby 

Florida Gov. Rick Scott on the repeal of DOMA:

Look, I've been married since I was 19. I believe in traditional marriage.

This was, in his lizard-brain reaction, his way of saying that the repeal has no impact on the laws of Florida and its constitutional amendment passed in 2008 banning same-sex marriage.

But Mr. Scott is predicting the next battle for marriage equality. The fact that he is (we assume) happily married doesn't mean anything other than there is connubial bliss in the Scott household, and his marriage doesn't have any bearing on the people next door. Equal rights is not a zero-sum game. Granting marriage equality to a gay couple doesn't take it away from the straight people. (Please don't let's rehash the slippery slope argument of man-on-dog marriages. That will only happen when a dog has the ability to comprehend and accept the terms of a contract. Dogs may rule, but that's not a part of the deal.)

The fact that DOMA is now dead means that states that do not recognize all marriages no longer have much of a leg to stand on in denying spousal benefits when a married couple named Fred and Paul from Massachusetts relocates to Palmetto Bay, Florida. And in a way, Justice Antonin Scalia, in his rant against the ruling, predicted the next shoe to drop. Marriage equality at the state level is coming up next.

(Cross-posted at Bark Bark Woof Woof.)

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