DOMA Decision a Rallying Cry for Equality Florida

June 27, 2013
St. Pete Patch

With dozens of people holding signs, rainbow colored flags and T-shirts, St. Pete residents were cheering the United States Supreme Court's decision Wednesday at Straub Park to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act and to strike down California's Prop 8. 

It was time for joy for those in attendance, but Equality Florida said Wednesday also served as a reminder of how far Florida needs to come until all are equal.

"While today is a huge day for celebration, the Supreme Court of the United States fell short by not making freedom for everyone the law of the land for the United States," said Brian Winfield, a managing director with Equality Florida. "We have to ensure that freedom to marry is the law of the land in Florida. Get engaged."

After the high court's ruling Wednesday, 13 states and Washington D.C. now allow gay marriage. Winfield said it would take family, friends and communities to ensure Florida becomes equal. 

"For family and friends who maybe aren’t 100 percent there for us yet," Winfield said. "we have to pull them across the boarder. We think it’s doable."

Earlier this month, Equality Florida announced its campaign for gay marriage in Florida called "Get Engaged".  

"Today's rulings are a major step forward for the country, but for Floridians they fall far short of justice and are more than anything a call to action," said Equality Florida executive director Nadine Smith.  "For those of us who live in state's like Florida where our marriages are still not recognized, today's rulings are a reminder that we cannot wait for justice to be handed to us, we are going to have to get engaged and fight.

"A majority of Floridians support the freedom to marry, and this is our moment to stand up and get engaged on the right side of history," Smith continued.

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