D.C. Residents talk about Same-Sex Marriages

DC in favor of Gay MarriageBy Kailyn HartOn Tuesday, 150 people attended a rally at Freedom Plaza called “Stand Up for same sex Marriage.” The Plaza was filled with residents and visitor for-and against the legalization of same sex marriage.

Some residents believe America is in the mood for change. “With President Obama in office, a lot of things are possible,” said Ruth Johns,33, teacher and South East resident. “The nation is ready for change and I think that’s why more people are starting to support gay marriages.”

“I think that D.C. will completely legalize gay marriages in a year or two,” said Margaret Fuller, 25, Northwest resident. “I’m in favor of equal rights. This is a matter of church and state and to deny certain citizens rights and not others is unconstitutional. I believe that people are recognizing that.”

The district officials are on the verge of passing legislation that recognizes gay marriages.

“I look forward to attending lots of weddings in 2010,” said attorney Nehemiah Johnson, 41. “And that’s all I have to say about that.”

On Monday Fox and CBS news released a poll broadcasting the nationwide growing support of same-sex nuptials nationwide. The poll tallied 973 random phone interviews. The poll showed that 42 percent of the United States citizens are in favor of legalizing Gay marriages; nine points higher from last month’s poll with 33 percent. Some residents feel that homosexual couples should receive the same benefits, but the not the title of marriage; an option not posed during the survey.

“I think that they should have the legal rights that come with a marriage but not the title,” said Alesha Johnson, 21, Northwest, D.C.

Crystal Turner, 23, Northwest, D.C., said, “I think civil unions are more befitting” “I am in favor as a legal matter, but it shouldn’t be called marriage.”

Both Johnson and Turner are students in the District.

“However I believe they should receive the same benefits as a husband and wife should.,” Turner said. “Instead of changing the definition of marriage, they should call it something else.”

Some people think that the union of same-sex couples should not be recognized by officials.

Joseph, 22, who wanted to remain anonymous, said he opposes gay marriage. “I just think it’s immoral,” Joseph said. Joseph is also opposed to civil unions. “I don’t think another man should be able to benefit from another man.”

In July, the United States Census Bureau in response to the Federal Defense of Marriage act and similar mandates will edit responses from same-sex couples who marry legally in California and Massachusetts for the 2010 census.

The surveys will not include same-sex marriage, instead homosexual nupitals will be recorded as unmarried partners.

According to Census Snapshot of Washington D.C. performed by the Williams Institute there are 33,000 same sex couples living in DC in 2005, about 11 percent of the total population.

In 1992, the District city council passed a domestic partnerships law, which offered a protections and responsibility to same sex couple. The District of Columbia is one of thirteen areas that offers a statewide form of recognition for same sex couples and their families.