GLBT Activists Respond to Supreme Court Hearings On Same-Sex Marriage

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – In national polls support for same-sex marriage has been gaining momentum, it’s a trend GLBT advocates are hoping will translate to the United States Supreme Court’s ruling on the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8.

The Executive Director for GLBT Advocacy and Youth Services in Huntsville, James Robinson, says legalizing same-sex marriage is in his opinion a secular, not religious issue, about equal civil rights.

“There are over 1000 protections that come with legalized recognition of marriage on the Federal level, from income taxes to an array of benefits many people don’t think about,” said Robinson.

Adoption for Alabama’s same-sex couples is another issue Robinson hopes will be addressed if DOMA is overturned.

“There are a lot of challenges with adoption in states where [same-sex couples] can’t be legally recognized,” said Robinson. “These relationships do exist, these adoptions do exist. But they’re done in other ways. One parent may become guardian in case something happens to an adoptive parent, but these are still all loopholes people have to jump through to find safe and loving homes for children.”

On the other side of the issue are religious leaders, who defend what they call the traditional family model

WHNT News 19 reached out to several churches however no one was available to speak with us today. However chairman of the Evangelical Church Alliance has called for protections for the church.

“While we stand for the defense of marriage as between one man and one woman, it is quite clear that definition on the federal level is at great risk, likely by five to four. If that should happen, we have urged in our brief that this court take into consideration and explicitly guarantee the religious freedom of military chaplains, civilian chaplains who are under orders by federal authorities,” said Reverand Rob Schenck.

The hearings wrapped up Wednesday, but the Justices are expected to come to a ruling this Summer.