Washington DC, August 5, 2010
The American Humanist Association (AHA) expressed enthusiastic approval with yesterday’s ruling by a federal judge that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker wrote of the California ban on gay marriage, “Marriage in the United States has always been a civil matter. Civil authorities may permit religious leaders to solemnize marriages but not to determine who may enter or leave a civil marriage.”
“This is a triumph for the LGBT community and humanists alike,” Said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “Human rights cannot be denied under the pretense of religious belief. This ruling is a reminder that equality prevails over prejudice within our justice system.”
The ruling, met with great elation from Prop 8 protestors across the country, is a landmark decision in the fight for gay marriage. If appealed, the case will move to the 9th Circuit Court followed by the U.S. Supreme Court if chosen for review. The ruling also serves as a setback for the religious right battling gay marriage, who are expected to fight the decision.
“As a gay man and a wedding officiate,” said Jason Frye, coordinator of the LGBT Humanist Council, an adjunct of the AHA, “I see this as a hard-earned victory. We have to keep in mind that there are two courts superior, and you better believe with the amount of money and emotional investment already dished out by both sides, that this monumental struggle has just begun.”
The American Humanist Association (www.americanhumanist.org) advocates for the rights and viewpoints of humanists. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., its work is extended through more than 100 local chapters and affiliates across America.
Humanism is the idea that you can be good without a belief in God.