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Mar 26, 2013 7:14 AM by Kristen Holloway

Same Sex Marriage Appeals Hits Home in Lafayette

In our nation's capital, people are already lining up outside the supreme court in hopes of getting a seat to witness history. Arguments over the right to same-sex marriage start this morning. These cases hit home for one Lafayette man.
Robert Wilson's partner died, while the two of them waited for what Wilson calls equality for all. Robert Wilson and his partner Joe had been together for ten years until about a year and a half go when joe died. After spending such a large portion of life together, Joe's death frightened his partner; leaving Robert unsure of what would happen next.
"There were a lot of concerns that his family had the right to go in throw me out of the house or do a lot of things that were just really terrible but I was very fortunate that Joe's family was very supportive but there are a lot of couples that end up with some really awful situations," said Wilson.
The nations highest court makes a decision on two cases, both important for the gay rights community and those interested in defending a "traditional" definition of marriage. The first, the appeal of California's "Proposition 8" that outlaws same sex marriage. The other is the federal defense of marriage act or DOMA, it legally defines marriage as between a man and woman.
"If they confirm this then you're looking at a morality shift . Your looking at the federal government taking a stand on a heavy issue, we're not talking about civil unions. If they say marriage this is a big dictate from our government that says this is the way our country will now behave," said UL Political Science Professor.
"It's not special rights, we're talking, it's rights that are available to other couples already but are being denied currently to gay and lesbian couples because of their sexual orientation," said Wilson.
The court could strike down dozens of state laws that limit marriage to heterosexual couples. It could also uphold gay marriages bans or say nothing meaningful about the issue at all. Rulings on the cases are not likely before late June.

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