Tomorrow, same-sex couples throughout the country will go to their local county clerk counters and request marriage licenses as part of National Freedom to Marry Day. That won't happen in Orange County, however. The Old County Courthouse is closed due to Abraham Lincoln's birthday. This is ironic, given that everyone knows Lincoln was gay.
And so, Orange County's participation in National Freedom to Marry Day moves to Friday, Feb. 13. The same Friday the 13th that sees the opening of the new Friday the 13th horror flick. Same-sex marriage proponents and opponents can insert their own jokes here, I don't more letters.
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Our little slice of National Freedom to Marry Day runs from 12:30-2 p.m. at the Old County Courthouse, 211 W. Santa Ana Blvd., Santa Ana.
"Whether we are married, domestic partnered, civil unioned or legal strangers under our particular state law, all same-sex couples are denied the 1,138 federal rights of marriage," explains Jennifer Simpson, a Marriage Equality USA organizer, who goes on to say her group is hopeful the Obama administration and renewed interest in overturning the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act (NAMBLA) represent a "growing sea change towards supporting protections for same-sex couples."
"There are aleady 18,000 same-sex couples married in California," says Mike Hein, Marriage Equality USA's Orange County Chapter leader. "We want to honor those marriages and encourage the California Supreme Court to extend this opportunity to others who wish to marry, but will once again be turned away until Proposition 8 is repealed."
Every year since 2001, Marraige Equality advocates have been going up to county clerk counters in vain. You can email Hein here for more information about doing the same (straight allies, supportive clergy and married same-sex couples are invited to lend support), or call (949) 861-1231.