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Queer Talk: West Point Chapel Hosts First Same Gender Marriage

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was repealed just over a year ago. On this past Saturday, December 1, the Chapel of West Point Academy was the site of the marriage of Brenda Sue Fulton, a key opponent of DADT and a 1980 graduate of West Point, and her partner of many years, Penelope Gnesin. See Buzzfeed for some great photos.

Although House Republicans have passed legislation in recent years banning same-sex couples from marrying on military property, the Senate Democratic majority and Obama administrations have opposed them, preventing such provisions from becoming law.

Fulton has been a leading figure in the long fight for out LGBT service. She is a founder of KnightsOut, the organization of West Point alumni supporting LGBT servicemembers, and is on the board of directors of the recently merged national organization addressing the topic, OutServe-SLDN.

More Marriage Equality News

Today the Supreme Court will announce more cases it will hear in the coming session. Those could include cases related to DOMA and Prop 8.

Meanwhile, John Aravosis reports NV judge: If gays can marry, straights will decide not to, and the human race will die: (emphasis added)

A federal trial court ruled that Nevada can limit marriage to opposite-sex couples in a ruling made public hours before the Supreme Court is due to consider whether it will hear any of several cases addressing same-sex couples’ marriage rights. Judge Robert C. Jones, a George W. Bush appointee, found that the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection of the laws does not ‘[prohibit] the People of the State of Nevada from maintaining statutes that reserve the institution of civil marriage to one-man—one-woman relationships.’ …

‘Should that institution [civil marriage] be expanded to include same-sex couples with the state’s imprimatur, it is conceivable that a meaningful percentage of heterosexual persons would cease to value the civil institution as highly as they previously had and hence enter into it less frequently, opting for purely private ceremonies, if any, whether religious or secular, but in any case without civil sanction, because they no longer wish to be associated with the civil institution as redefined, leading to an increased percentage of out-of-wedlock children, single-parent families, difficulties in property disputes after the dissolution of what amount to common law marriages in a state where such marriages are not recognized, or other unforeseen consequences.’

Using that line of thought, does that mean that the marriages of heterosexual couples will begin to deteriorate? “Oh my god! The gays can marry! Our marriage no longer has traditional values meaning!” Or maybe it will provide a handy excuse for those looking for a way out of a “to death do us part” commitment

Congratulations to Brenda Fulton and Penelope Gnesin. Do check out the photos: that’s what love looks like. Why that is so frightening to some people is beyond me.

(Marriage is a Basic Civil Right poster via AFER)

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3 Responses to Queer Talk: West Point Chapel Hosts First Same Gender Marriage

  1. AliceP December 3, 2012 at 11:13 am #

    This is WONDERFUL!

  2. secularhumanizinevoluter December 3, 2012 at 12:16 pm #

    Indeed…wonderful indeed.

  3. Cujo359 December 3, 2012 at 4:05 pm #

    Re: the NV federal court decision, it’s hard to imagine more tenuous logic. There are people who will decide to do or not do things for all sorts of reasons. Did this judge ever consider that this logic could just as easily be applied to a law that didn’t allow gay marriage? Talk about affirming the consequent.

    Meanwhile, in the real world, there are plenty of examples of our government behaving in a way that diminishes respect for the law. The crash of 2008 and the widespread mortgage fraud that followed are a case in point, not to mention the continued existence of the Guantanamo Bay holding facility. I wonder if the judge thinks any of those things are a problem.

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