Edith Windsor, the 83-year-old lesbian
at the center of a gay marriage case headed to the Supreme Court,
believes her late wife Thea Spyer would have been proud that her case
could set a new precedent for gay couples.
On Friday, the Supreme Court announced
it would hear two cases related to marriage equality: a case
challenging the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and another
challenging Proposition 8, California's 2008 voter-approved
constitutional amendment banning gay nuptials.
Windsor filed her lawsuit after she was
asked to pay more than $360,000 in estate taxes following the death
of Spyer, because DOMA forbids the federal government from
recognizing their 2007 marriage. The women shared their lives
together for 44 years.
“When Thea and I met nearly 50 years
ago, we never could have dreamed that the story of our life together
would be before the Supreme Court as an example of why gay married
couples should be treated equally, and not like second-class
citizens,” Windsor said in a statement.
“While Thea is no longer alive, I
know how proud she would have been to see this day. The truth is I
never expected any less from my country.”