California Couple Discusses Decades Long Struggle For Marriage Equality

Stuart Gaffney and John Lewis have been deeply involved in the struggle to legalize same-sex marriage. They were two of the plaintiffs in the historic 2008 lawsuit that held California’s ban on same-sex marriage violated the state constitution. They have been together for 26 years and married in 2008 before Prop 8 passed. Both work at Marriage Equality USA: Gaffney is the media director, and Lewis is the legal director. In addition, Gaffney reflects on the legal challenges surrounding his parents’ marriage -- his mother is Chinese American, and his father is white. In 1948, the California Supreme Court legalized interracial marriage, but other states did not recognize their marriage.

John Lewis: "Well, I was very impressed and encouraged by the way he[Justice Anthony Kennedy] talked about the real lives of those 40,000 children of same-sex couples. I think that the evidence is actually quite clear that lesbian and gay people are doing wonderful jobs raising kids. There’s actually a tremendous amount of study having been devoted to the issue. There’s decades of experience. Last week, the American Academy of Pediatricians came out in favor of marriage equality, and that’s a very, very strong endorsement of how having the freedom to marry for a family is actually very beneficial to those children."

A full transcript of Gaffney and Lewis' exchange with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! is available here.

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