It was ten years ago on Saturday that
the first gay and lesbian couples in America legally exchanged vows
It was on May 17, 2004 that
celebrations erupted in town halls across Massachusetts as the first
gay couples married after the state Supreme Court ruled a gay
marriage ban unconstitutional. The scenes were cheerful as hundreds
of well wishers rushed to witness history unfold before their eyes.
Peg Preble & Robyn Ochs were among
the first couples to marry.
“It was a beautiful day and a
beautiful moment and I was feeling so embraced,” Ochs told the AP.
“You know what, we got married on May
17, 2004, and on May 18 the buses still ran, children still had to go
to school, the grocery store still had food on the shelves, the sky
didn't fall. And as time has past, it's really become no big deal,”
Since then, 16 other states plus the
District of Columbia have followed suit.
In Massachusetts, the fight went on
until 2007, when lawmakers decided to abandon efforts to re-ban such
unions with a constitutional amendment as support grew.
The next year, lawmakers paved over an
obscure 1913 law that banned non-residents from marrying in the state
if the marriage was not recognized in their home state.