Proud of PA judge’s ruling

Published May 28, 2014 at 6:51 am (Updated May 23, 2014 at 4:43 pm)

Pennsylvania has long been known as a state that is behind the times, particularly when it comes to our antiquated laws. But last week, we joined the ranks of 18 other progressive states – along with the District of Columbia – when U.S. District Judge John E. Jones declared Pennsylvania’s restriction to marriage between one man and one woman unconstitutional.

In 1996, Pennsylvania changed it’s statute of marriage to be defined as between one man and one woman.

We are proud that the ruling came as it did, and we are even more proud that two of the defendants who initiated the case, Deb and Susan Whitewood, are from South Fayette (two of Whitewoods’ children, a widow and 10 other couples all filed a federal lawsuit challenging the ban last year).

And, in another point of pride, we are thrilled that Gov. Tom Corbett, a Roman Catholic, has no plans to challenge the ruling, despite his statement that he, personally, believes that marriage should be between a man and a woman. He’s caught some fire for making the statement about himself and his politics rather than about marriage, but the bottom line is that he is accepting the ruling and recognizing its strength.

Thanks to the decision, so many couples who are so deeply in love will now be able to make their commitment official. Couples immediately began applying for marriage licenses, some even asking for the three-day wait period to be waved. And why not – after all, many had waited decades for the opportunity to legally wed.

These couples will finally be treated like other married couples when it comes to health and retirement benefits, taxes and basic rights.

Perhaps, too, those who aren’t tolerant of the gay lifestyle just might come around.

Marriage isn’t about a man and a woman, a man and a man, or a woman and a woman. Marriage is about love, and thankfully, Pennsylvania finally agrees.

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