SOUTHGATE (WWJ) – The local gay community is keeping a close eye on arguments by the U.S. Supreme Court concerning same-sex marriage.
Kyle Burns from Southgate says he and his partner of nine years want to get married — and so this topic is especially important to him.
“I’ve had people ask me do you support gay marriage, and I said,’well I actually support marriage equality’ because to call it gay marriage is to say there’s such a thing as straight marriage, or Asian marriage, or black marriage, or Jewish marriage. Whenever you have to give it a label like that, it makes it appear as though one form of it is more important than the other,” Burns said.
Burns and his partner are crossing their fingers that the U.S Supreme Court lifts California’s ban on same-sex marriage. Burns believes other states across the country would follow.
“I’m holding out, I’m just holding out that the Supreme Court is going to see the constitution was designed to ignore the hatred of people and stand up for equality,” said Burns. “This is a living document.”
And what if the high court dismisses the case?
“It’s that faith, if this doesn’t work – it’s that hope – that kind of gets me through it,” he said. “Would it crush me? ‘Yes.’ If it didn’t go through but the sun is going to rise tomorrow and tomorrow is going to bring a new possibility and I definitely … if it doesn’t happen now it will happen.”
Burns believes that even if the Supreme Court dismisses the case, same-sex marriage will become legal in the next few years.
Voters in California passed Proposition 8, the ballot initiative banning same-sex marriage, in 2008 — after the California Supreme Court said the state Constitution provided same-sex couples a right to marry. Supporters of same-sex marriage sued, and a federal district court judge ruled Prop. 8 was unconstitutional. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit agreed.
But in the Supreme Court, the first questions the justices posed today — and for about a quarter of the argument — focused on whether defenders of Prop. 8 had proper legal standing. The defenders, four people who pushed for the ballot initiative, entered the case after the state refused to defend Prop 8 in court.