Freedom to Marry Calls on Wyoming Legislature to Keep Discrimination Out of the “Equality State”
Jan 24, 2011 at 06:30 pm
Below is a statement from Evan Wolfson, Founder and Executive Director of Freedom to Marry, urging the Wyoming State Legislature to reject a constitutional amendment
that passed the House today that would specify that out-of-state
marriages of same-sex couples would not be honored in Wyoming.
“Freedom to Marry calls on the Wyoming legislature to reject this
amendment, which would enshrine discrimination in its constitution.
Marriage is not defined by those who are excluded from it, but instead
by the love and commitment between two people. House Bill 74 would
strip away the rights of citizens because of whom they love.
Inappropriately titled ‘Validity of Marriages,’ this bill is an ugly
attempt to avoid honoring legal marriages performed outside the borders
of the 'Equality State.'
“Wyoming has long enjoyed its admirable nickname because of its
commitment to equal protection under the law for all. In 1890, Wyoming
was the first state to be admitted to the Union that allowed women to
vote. Much in the way that ending the exclusion of women from voting
did not change the definition of voting, ending the exclusion of loving
and committed same-sex couples from marriage does not change the
definition of marriage.
"A majority of Americans
now believe that same-sex couples should have the freedom to marry.
And today, gay and lesbian couples can marry in Massachusetts,
Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Iowa, and the District of
Columbia, in addition to 12 countries on four continents. In each of
these places, the sky has not fallen, and families have been helped,
with no one hurt.”