From the cover of Newsweek, to the Rose Garden at the White House, the long simmering issue of gay marriage has erupted into full boil. While countries such as Canada and Belgium have recently legalized gay marriage, the US seems steadfastly locked in the past. Change, Davina Kotulski argues, will only come through organized activism, but the importance of legalized gay marriage remains unclear to many in the GLBT community. There are no less than 1049 federal rights granted to hetero-sexuals that remain out of reach to gays and lesbians as long as they don’t have the right to marry. This quick and simple read outlines the rights, benefits and protections afforded through marriage, exploring the negative effects of not having these rights through case examples of real couples who have experienced hardships and composite vignettes illustrating how couples can be hurt by lacking access to these protections. Through learning of the great disparity between how same-sex couples are treated compared to heterosexual couples, and of the membership privileges society affords married couples readers of this book will begin to see new possibilities in their lives, and be inspired to join the growing freedom to marry movement.
Davina Kotulski, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist with deep roots in the freedom-to-marry movement. She has organized same-sex marriage gay pride contingents throughout Northern California, first with Californian’s for Same-Sex Marriage, and then with Marriage Equality California. She has been active in fighting antigay legislation such as the Knight Initiative, is on the board of Marriage Equality California, and serves on the Education and Religious Outreach Committee of the California Marriage Coalition/Freedom-to-Marry Coalition.