This past Monday, New Jersey same-sex couples flocked to their city hall to get married. It was a joyous time for many LGBT parents and couples, as they celebrated the New Jersey Supreme Court’s recent decision. Last Friday, the court ruled against Governor Chris Christie’s request to deny gay marriages while Christie appealed it. Christie, realizing he was probably in a no-win situation, dropped his appeal.
The fight for gay marriage In New jersey has not been easy. Like many states, it was a road of twists and turns. In 2012, Christie vetoed a New Jersey bill that would have permitted gay marriage. This past summer, gay activists turned up the heat, in an effort to convince lawmakers to override Christie. With the Supreme Court’s final decision on Friday, LGBT couples and advocates can finally enjoy the fruits of their labor.
New Jersey newlyweds speak
Orville Bell and Joseph Panessidi made history as the first gay couple to officially marry in New Jersey.
“It is our responsibility to ensure for young people that there is a positive future,” said Bell, as stated on www. nydailynews.com.
Amy Quinn and Heather Jensen, who married this past June in New York took advantage of the chance to marry in Quinn’s home state of New Jersey. At 12:01 a.m. this past Monday, the couple tied the knot in a boardwalk ceremony.
"It’s a historic day," said Amy Quinn, as stated on www.nj.com. "To be able to get married in my home state, in a town that I adore, to be able to get married by friends, with friends, around friends, it’s such an amazing experience."
Is Pennsylvania next?
With New Jersey added to the list of states to allow gay marriage, an important question remains. Will Pennsylvania be the next state to allow same-sex marriage? The Commonwealth state is now the only state in the Northeast region that still bans gay marriage. Pennsylvania also prohibits civil unions.
The road to gay marriage in Pennsylvania will be tough.
The issue of whether kids should be raised by gay parents has influenced some conservative leaders' feelings about gay marriage. Other leaders have compared gay marriage to incest, including Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett. Corbett recently angered many people this past month. In an interview with WHP-TV in Harrisburg, Corbett compared gay marriage to brothers and sisters marrying.
While Corbett did apologize for his comment, Christie's recent decision to drop his appeal does not change Corbett's mind on gay marriage. Corbett's stance is not only hurting gay couples who want to marry, but same-sex couples with children and ones who desire kids in the future.
Ted Martin, executive director for Equality PA, is not supportive of Corbett's views.
"We're talking about couples who have been together for decades, who have built families together, who have given back to communities across Pennsylvania. We're not talking about children," said Martin, as stated in an article on www.motherjones.com.
While Pennsylvania does not have laws protecting gay individuals from workplace and housing discrimination, there are Pennsylvania leaders engaged in the gay marriage fight. Montgomery County Clerk Bruce Hanes started handing out marriage licenses to gay couples this past July. Corbett filed a lawsuit to halt Hane's issuing of marriage licenses to same-sex couples, the court's Sept. 12 ruling favoring Corbett. However, Hanes is appealing the ruling.
Will the Pennsylvania court rule in favor of Hanes?
Please state your thoughts with a comment below.