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Sarbanes Statement on Ending Discrimination Against Gays and Lesbians
WASHINGTON – U.S. Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today released the following statement after the Supreme Court began consideration of challenges to California’s Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act:
“As the Supreme Court considers challenges to California’s Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act, I join the millions of Americans who are standing up for marriage equality. The time has come for our society to discard policies that discriminate against same sex couples. I am proud that Maryland, along with eight other states, has affirmed the right of every person to marry, regardless of sexual orientation.
“I am further heartened by the meaningful strides being taken to eliminate other forms of discrimination against gays and lesbians. President Obama has mandated changes at the Office of Personnel Management so that federal workers with same-sex partners may have access to benefits they have earned. The United States military has ended its ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy, at long last giving proper respect to our gay and lesbian service members who put their lives on the line every single day. And it’s not just government institutions that are reevaluating policies of discrimination. Other established organizations are taking up these difficult questions and charting a new path forward. For example, the Boy Scouts of America, one of the nation’s oldest and most respected organizations, has signaled its readiness to revisit current membership policies that effectively ban gay members. Initiatives of this kind, if carried forward with a spirit of tolerance, will add significantly to the progress being made on so many fronts.”
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