Gay rights supporters celebrate Supreme Court decisions

June 27, 2013 3:58:46 AM PDT
There was a bittersweet celebration in Raleigh Wednesday evening for the end of the Defense of Marriage Act.

However, amid the excitement, here in North Carolina we still have Amendment One, which bans same sex marriage.

While Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling won't change much now, those against the amendment are hopeful it will change things in the future.

Kristen Hibbetts met her now wife four years ago at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, where Wednesday's celebration was held.

"We were married in Vermont and our marriage is not recognized here in North Carolina," said Hibbetts.

Still, they had a wedding celebration at the church and now find themselves celebrating yet another milestone under this same roof.

The U.S. Supreme Court struck down a provision of a federal law denying federal benefits to married gay couples.

"As soon as I saw it on the news, I ran outside and told her right away," said Hibbetts.

The Supreme Court also cleared the way for same sex marriage in California, which is something North Carolinian Jake Gellar-Goad was especially happy to hear. He was planning his wedding in California when Proposition 8 passed.

"I'm glad to see both it and the Defense of Marriage Act are dead now," said Gellar-Goad.

Sixty percent of voters supported Amendment One a year ago, which makes the dumping of DOMA legally a non-issue here, but it does add fuel to the fight.

"The Supreme Court has spoken on marriage equality that should give us opportunities to challenge Amendment One, if not legally or legislatively, one of the two might could go either way," said Stuart Campbell, of Equality NC.

However, for now, it won't diminish the celebration.

"We're still excited about what we believe is to come," said Hibbetts.

Meanwhile, Bishop Burbidge of the Catholic Diocese of Raleigh released a statement saying he is not happy with Wednesday's decision.

" Catholic teaching holds that marriage is a union established by God and endowed by God with its own proper nature and laws that predate both government and religion," he wrote.

Click here to read Burbidge's full statement.

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