After the U.S. Supreme made the decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act and not take up an appeal in the case involving voter-approved Prop 8, San Diegans reacted to the news that same-sex marriage will return to California.
The local gay community and their supporters said this decision by the Supreme Court is a step in the right direction, giving equality to everyone.
Ira Bauer-Spector said today he finally feels like a citizen of this country.
“My love is as good as any other love and I'm grateful to the Supreme Court for writing the ruling the way that they did,” said Bauer-Spector.
Ira says he called his husband immediately when he heard about the Supreme Court's decision. He married his husband in three different states: The couple had a commitment ceremony in Michigan, a civil union in Colorado and got their marriage certificate in New York.
Bauer-Spector said today's decision to make marriage legal again in California makes his union feel real, and more than a piece of paper.
Local same-sex marriage supporters in Hillcrest agreed with the court’s decision.
“I think it’s about equality. Everyone should be able to choose who they want to marry--man or woman,” said San Diego resident said Sara Solomon.
Meanwhile, San Diego Mayor Bob Filner had this to say about Wednesday's ruling:
"This marks a long over-due end to federally sanctioned discrimination and the beginning of a bright, loving future for millions of Americans. I am proud to be a part of today’s celebration of equality which unites us toward a future where all Americans are truly equal."
But supporters of the original Prop 8 gay marriage ban said they are disappointed with the court’s decision.
“This is not the outcome we were looking for,” said Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse from The Ruth Institute. “But as we look at it closer there are some rays of hope in these decisions.”
Morse said she’s happy this isn’t the “Roe vs. Wade of the marriage movement” and she’s pleased there isn’t a federal right to same-sex marriage.
Local pastor Chris Clark from Clairemont Southern Baptist Church agreed, and said he will continue to advocate for marriage between a man and a woman.
“I am by no means giving up,” he said. “What I can do is continue to speak on the biblical definition of marriage.”
Many San Diego leaders released statements of support today following the court’s decision.
San Diego City Council President Todd Gloria said he is especially proud to be an American today.
“I am grateful to every person who loved and lived proudly and who worked hard and sacrificed to make this justice a reality,” he said in a statement. "I will be asking the City Council's Rules Committee to examine all of the City's policies to make sure they are consistent with post-DOMA federal regulations and that our employees are afforded proper benefits."
Former mayor candidate Carl DeMaio said he is very pleased with the decision to strike down DOMA.
"With today's court decisions, we took a big step forward for full equality,” he said.
LGBTQ groups are planning rallies tonight, one at 5 p.m. at the Hillcrest Pride Flag and another at 6 p.m. in Oceanside at the North County LGBTQ Resource Center.