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Marriage equality 2014: Michigan issues 1st gay marriage license

Just one day after the historic decision by U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman ruling the same-sex marriage ban in the state of Michigan as unconstitutional, the first gay marriage license was issued on Saturday. According to a report by the Associated Press on March 22, two women became the first gay couple to marry.

Kristen Vanderzouwen (R) of Grand Rapids, Michigan, her baby Alexzander, 3 months, Danielle Helgeson (C) of Allendale, Michigan and Melissa Schaub (L) of Allendale, Michigan attend a rally in favor of same-sex marriage at the U.S. Courthouse where U.S. Di
Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

Glenna Dejone, 53, and Marsha Caspar, 51, of Lansing experienced "sheer joy" as they took their vows. Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum officiated the nuptials just minute after her office opened at 8 a.m. as Ingham County is one of three counties that have already begun issuing marriage licenses.

The moment has been something gay couples in the state have been waiting for. As Caspar explains, it's an "overwhelming" feeling.

"I figured in my lifetime it would happen. But now, when it happens now, it's just overwhelming. I still can't believe it. I don't think it's hit me yet."

As Dejone, Caspar and other gay couples in the state celebrate the decision, the attorney general's office is not happy with the decision that followed a two-week trial that explored attitudes and researched the family structure and dynamics of households led by same-sex couples. There was an emphasis on the voter-approved 2004 amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Friendman, whoever, made her ruling based on the evidence presented to her from the research as she declared same-sex couples deserved the right to marry as well as adopt children into a loving atmosphere. She also stated that state defendants lost sight of what the case was truly about in their efforts to defend the ban. The case was simple about people.

"It is the court's fervent hope that these children will grow up 'to understand the integrity and closeness of their own family and its concord with other families in their community and in their daily lives. Today's decision is a step in that direction, and affirms the enduring principle that regardless of whoever finds favor in the eyes of the most recent majority, the guarantee of equal protection must prevail."

The results of the lawsuit filed by April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse in 2012 has created smiles on a Saturday morning in 2014 as Dejone and Caspar became the first of many couples to exchange vows in the state of Michigan, the 18th state to celebrate equal love.

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