Ellen writes open letter to the Supreme Court urging it to strike down Proposition 8
American TV host Ellen has made her opinion known to the Supreme Court which, later in March, will begin to take on the case of whether to overturn Proposition 8, California’s statewide ban on equal marriage.
In the letter, which she published on her website, the openly gay, and historically outspoken TV host urged the Supreme Court to “do the right thing” in overturning Prop 8.
She describe her four years married to Portia de Rossi as “the happiest” of her life, and jokingly said she didn’t think in that time they had “hurt” anyone else’s marriage.
Emphasising what she said was everybody’s right to happiness, she said she hoped the Supreme Court would “do the right thing”, and overturn Proposition 8, saying it would “keep families together”, will allow everyone “the same rights”, and concluded by saying “it is time”.
Ellen’s effort joins the Obama administration, which filed a brief late on Thursday, as well as two top NFL players, both equal rights advocates, Chris Kluwe and Brendon Ayanbadejo, who filed an amicus brief with the court.
The Supreme Court is due on 26 March to take up the case of whether to overturn Proposition 8, which in 2008 added a clause to the Californian constitution stating that marriage could only be recognised by the state if it were between a man and a woman, causing widespread controversy.
Ellen’s full letter is available to read below:
California’s Proposition 8 is headed to the Supreme Court. Hundreds of companies and families as well as Republicans are submitting briefs urging the 9 judges to allow gay people to marry. I thought that was ridiculous. Why would judges want all of that underwear? Then, after a quick talk with some people, I found out what a brief was.
I’ve never filed a brief to the Supreme Court, so I thought I would post mine here. I’m sure someone will tweet it to them.
Portia and I have been married for 4 years and they have been the happiest of my life. And in those 4 years, I don’t think we hurt anyone else’s marriage. I asked all of my neighbors and they say they’re fine.
But even though Portia and I got married in the short period of time when it was legal in California, there are 1,138 federal rights for married couples that we don’t have, including some that protect married people from losing their homes, or their savings or custody of their children.
The truth is, Portia and I aren’t as different from you as you might think. We’re just trying to find happiness in the bodies and minds we were given, like everyone else.
Coming out was one of the hardest things I ever did. I didn’t intend to be on the cover of Time magazine saying, “Yep, I’m gay.” The truth is, I don’t even remember saying that. I mean, I definitely said the “I’m gay” part. It’s the “yep” I don’t remember. I’m not really a “yep” person. “Yes siree Bob” maybe. But not “yep.”
In the words of Benjamin Franklin, “We’re here, we’re queer, get over it.” And there’s another famous quote that says “A society is judged by how it treats its weakest members.” I couldn’t agree with that more. No one’s really sure who said it first, so if anyone asks, tell them I said it.
I hope the Supreme Court will do the right thing, and let everyone enjoy the same rights. It’s going to help keep families together. It’s going to make kids feel better about who they are. And it is time.
*I was just told Benjamin Franklin did not say that first quote. I apologize and see that I have a lot to learn about stuff.
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