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The Demolition of DOMA: Another Victory for Same-Sex Couples

Posted on Wednesday, 26th June 2013 @ 04:30 AM by Text Size A | A | A

Wednesday, June 26, 2013 was a historic moment for same-sex couples when the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was struck down by the Supreme Court, therefore allowing for the same federal benefits to be granted to same-sex marriages as are to heterosexual marriages. DOMA was initiated in 1996 and denied same-sex marriage partners the right to have equal benefits. Now with DOMA out of the way, gay marriage is now in equal terms with heterosexual marriages (at least in the states in which it is legal).

Edith Windsor was the woman who brought the case against DOMA. At 84 years old, she felt she had to do something to receive equal benefits as everyone else when the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) denied her the right to claim her late wife’s estate, worth over $350,000 that her wife had paid for in taxes. With the striking down of DOMA, it appears as if now the IRS is the one in debt and will have to provide Ms. Windsor with what rightfully belongs to her.

A second case to this issue dealt with Proposition 8, started in 2008, in which California outlawed same-sex marriage. However, the Supreme Court put into effect that gay marriage would continue to be legal in the state of California, despite protestors’ attempts at wanting to ban gay marriage.

While most states have yet to legalize gay marriage, should they decide to do so in the future, the fact that DOMA and Proposition 8 were struck down marks a historic day for the LGBT community and for supporters everywhere!

By: Rosa M. Gonzalez

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