LGBT community celebrates court ruling

It was a historic day in Washington D.C. for supporters of same sex marriage. The high court has overturned the decades old defense of marriage act and says the federal government must now recognize those marriages in the 12 states where they are currently legal.


It wasn't the crowd members of the Acadiana OUTspoken Alliance were hoping for this evening in front of the federal court house in Downtown Lafayette.


Organizers say as long as supporters of the same sex marriage showed up they could get their message across.


“We didn't know when we were going to have a decision. Mostly small or big turnout, we want people to know we're out here looking out for the LGBT community,” says Amanda Kelley.


Amanda Kelley founded the group over a year ago. She says this ruling by a supreme court is a big victory for the LGBT community.


“This is monumental for the community. It's not equality yet but it's a step to getting there,” Kelley explains.


Gay rights activist, Colin Miller, echoes that jubilation but says there is still a lot of work to do.


Miller says, “It also puts a highlight on the rest of the country that doesn't accept, or at least the law doesn't reflect that.”


The supreme court decision did not over turn state laws that still ban same sex marriage, like Louisiana. It recognizes those unions in legal states, and gives gay couples access to the same benefits as straight ones.


“I don't see the way things are going in Louisiana that that's gonna happen any time soon,” expresses Miller, “I think it's really gonna take a court case to overturn that Louisiana amendment.”


Both Miller and Kelley feel the LGBT community's best bet to start a movement to overturn Louisiana's ban, would come from Lafayette.


“Such an open an accepting community, that I think we definitely have the potential here to make strong changes in Louisiana,” says Kelley.


The Acadiana OUTspoken Alliance is hosting a family fun ay at Girard park this weekend and will further celebrate Wednesday's ruling. That will be at one o'clock Sunday afternoon.


Doug MacDiarmid

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