Edie Windsor Vs. DOMA Going to Supreme Court

12.7.2012

By Jerry Portwood

Supreme Court to hear the 83-year-old widow's case against DOMA

Great news today: The Supreme Court indicated today that it would hear the challenge to the California marriage ban and a challenge to DOMA from the elderly lesbian widow Edith Windsor. As The Advocate explains:

"The court has been asked to hear 11 petitions related to marriage equality, including cases about Proposition 8, same-sex domestic partnerships in Arizona, the Nevada constitutional ban, and eight challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act. The cases challenge the section of the 1996 law that prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages."

You might have first learned of Edie Windsor, 83, in the documentary, Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement. Or perhaps you remember Edie from the Out story in 2011. The love story explains how Edie met Thea Spyer in 1965, and the couple finally married in Toronto in 2007. But after Thea's death in 2009, Windsor suffered a $363,000 penalty in federal estate taxes that would have been avoided if they were a heterosexual couple. Windsor later filed a lawsuit in November 2010, with the aid of the ACLU, challenging the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife. And now her case is picking up more steam.

“When Thea and I met nearly 50 years ago, we never could have dreamed that the story of our life together would be before the Supreme Court as an example of why gay married couples should be treated equally, and not like second-class citizens,” Windsor said in a release sent out by the ACLU. “While Thea is no longer alive, I know how proud she would have been to see this day. The truth is, I never expected any less from my country.”

Read our story with Edie Windsor here.

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