#0054 RIP DOMA

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On Dec 8, The House of Representatives gave final passage to landmark legislation protecting same-sex marriages. When Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) back in 1996, banning same-sex marriage by limiting the definition of marriage to the Union of one man and one woman.

That moment crushed millions of hearts. Yet, almost a quarter of a century later, those hearts and souls can rest at ease knowing their ‘ other love’ is protected.

I love this quote from Barney Frank, the former Democratic congressman and the first House member to come out as gay. ‘I was here for the birth of Doma, so I am very grateful to be able to be here for the funeral.’

Let’s not forget Edith ‘Eddie’ Windsor, born to a Russian Jewish immigrant family of modest means. Who became a Master’s in Mathematics from New York University. Then a Technology manager at IBM. Also, an LGBT rights activist, the lead plaintiff in the 2013 Supreme Court of the United States case United States v. Windsor overturned Section 3 of DOMA and was considered a landmark legal victory for the same-sex marriage movement in the United States.

Did you know that in the late Spring of 1965, when Windsor started dating Thea Spyer to keep their relationship a secret from her co-workers, Windsor invented a relationship with Spyer’s fictional brother Willy – a childhood doll belonging to Windsor?

Then in 1967, Spyer asked Windsor to marry, although not legal anywhere in the United States proposed, with a circular diamond pin instead of a traditional engagement ring. In Jan of 2013, then across the pond, the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Bill was introduced into the UK Parliament.

As of 2022, Same-sex marriage, also known as gay marriage, is legally performed and recognised in 33 countries, constituting some 1.35 billion people (17% of the world’s population). On Feb 17 2023, a law allowing same-sex marriage will come into force in Andorra.

However, by royal decree on Apr 1 2001, Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands passed the first law providing marriage between same-sex couples. Hats off to the House of Representatives for making a difference for millions of Americans and a beacon of hope for billions more.

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