March 8, 2013
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in two critical LGBT rights cases: Hollingsworth v. Perry (challenging Proposition 8) and United States v. Windsor (challenging the Defense of Marriage Act). Join us to show your support for treating same-sex couples fairly and equally under the law.
|What:||Rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court|
|Who:||NOW, United for Marriage coalition, and allies|
|When:||Tuesday, March 26 and Wednesday, March 27|
8:30am - 12noon
|Where:||U.S. Supreme Court - Washington, D.C.|
First Street NE, between East Capitol St. and Maryland Ave.
|Metro:||Capitol South (Blue & Orange Lines) or Union Station (Red Line, Amtrak)|
If there isn't an event in your area, start one yourself! Start a discussion in your community about marriage equality, write letters to your local media about how marriage equality will benefit your community, or hold a rally or candlelight vigil to show your community's support for the freedom to marry.
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NOW has long recognized that the right to marry is a feminist issue. Federal law provides more than 1,100 rights, protections and benefits to heterosexual married couples. This includes everything from Social Security and tax benefits to family and medical leave, and the right to visit an injured spouse in the hospital. Because of DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) these rights, protections and benefits are currently denied to same-sex couples. Lesbian couples are particularly disadvantaged by this injustice because, thanks to the gender wage gap, women are paid 77 cents for every dollar paid to men, while their financial and caretaking responsibilities for children are disproportionately higher.
United States v. Windsor has the potential to render DOMA unconstitutional. Edie Windsor and Thea Spyer were a committed couple who shared their lives for 40 years before they were finally able to legally wed. When Thea died, Edie was forced to pay a large estate tax that would not have been demanded from a widow whose husband had just died. If the Supreme Court rules in Edie's favor and strikes down DOMA, the federal government would have to extend the same protections and benefits it grants to heterosexual couples to same-sex couples who legally marry.
Hollingsworth v. Perry addresses whether same-sex marriage can be prohibited. In 2008, California passed Proposition 8, a ballot initiative that amended the state constitution to restrict marriage to heterosexual couples only. Proposition 8 was found to be unconstitutional by the district and appeals courts, but that ruling is being challenged in Hollingsworth v. Perry. If the Supreme Court upholds the lower court ruling, Proposition 8 will be recognized as unconstitutional, and the right to marry will be extended to lesbian and gay couples in California and possibly across the country.
NOW is a member of the United for Marriage coalition, which includes more than 100 organizations dedicated to working toward the goal of marriage equality for all. On Tuesday, March 26 and 27, NOW and its allies will be wearing red in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., representing the majority of Americans who believe that the ability to marry the person you love is a constitutional right.
If you can, PLEASE come and join us. Registering is free, and you can RSVP online. Or find an event near you on the United for Marriage website.
Thank you for lending your voice to the rising tide of those speaking out in favor of marriage equality!
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