Local gay and lesbian group overjoyed, legislators distressed.
The State of California became one of two states where same sex couples can legally tie the knot, when the Supreme Court announced its decision to overturn Proposition 22 and allow the unions.
Several same-sex couples filed suit challenging Proposition 22, which was passed by voters in 2000, contending that the proposition violated their civil rights. Thursday morning, the seven-member court, comprised of six Republicans and one Democrat, announced their vote of 4-3 to allow gay marriage in California.
The 120-page ruling called the state’s definition of marriage as a “union between a man and a woman” unconstitutional under the equal protections promised by California law.
Justices determined that “There can be no doubt that extending the designation of marriage to same-sex couples, rather than denying it to all couples, is the equal protection remedy that is most consistent with our state’s general legislative policy and preference.”
Dave McEachern, the president of the Santa Clarita Valley Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays was overwhelmed with the news.
“I’m delighted, relieved and thankful that the Supreme Court has recognized that gay and lesbian people deserve the same rights as straight people,” he said. “They’re the only group left that are specifically discriminated against and kept from the wonderful institution of marriage.”
There are hate groups who will try and propose legislation to stop this,” he continued.
“They need to just give gays and lesbians a chance to prove that they can do better or as good making a commitment and supporting families as straight people.”
Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich issued a statement expressing displeasure with the ruling.
“This is another decision where four members of the judiciary reject the will of the people who overwhelming voted in 2000 to ban same sex marriage.”