Local reactions to SCOTUS rulings on gay marriage - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Local reactions to SCOTUS rulings on gay marriage

(Toledo News Now) -

Local reaction is pouring in on the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) rulings dealing with gay rights. The LGBT community celebrated at Packo's at the Park Wednesday night, saying the SCOTUS rulings were long overdue.

The main cause of celebration was the high court's decision about a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Justices struck down the portion that denies federal benefits to married gay couples.

It clears the way for same-sex couples to receive health, tax, and pension benefits that already go to married couples of the opposite sex.

Audrey Remusat of Equality Ohio helped organize the rally. She said the ruling was a relief.

"You know, after kind of biting our nails for the past couple of days, just waiting for what seems like an eternity for a decision on the right side of history," she said.

In the other ruling, the Supreme Court dealt a blow to California's voter-approved ban on gay marriage. Ohio does not recognize same sex marriage, but the supporters gathered in downtown Toledo believed there was now a sense of momentum.

"How long did it take for women to get the right to vote? How long did it take to integrate schools?" asked Sue Carter, ACLU state board member. "We're at that point in time where this equal justice issue is going to be solved and everyone will have the same rights."

But there are also negative reactions to the SCOTUS rulings. Bishop Leonard Blair of the Catholic Diocese of Toledo said in a statement, "Today's Supreme Court decisions on marriage are deeply disappointing. As I have previously written in a statement on marriage, law is a teacher that is meant to inform and uphold the common good. Accepting homosexual relationships as 'marriage' has the inevitable effect of weakening people's understanding and commitment to what marriage really is."

The Bishop also said the diocese will continue to be at the forefront of upholding marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

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