Two U.S. legal groups have submitted
briefs in a Colombian case seeking marriage equality.
According to gay weekly the
Blade, the New York City Bar Association and the Impact
Litigation Project at American University Washington College of Law
in D.C. filed briefs citing two U.S. Supreme Court cases.
In one of the cases, the Supreme Court
struck down as unconstitutional a key provision of the Defense of
Marriage Act (DOMA), which prohibited the federal government from
recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples. The
second case opened the door for the marriages of gay couples to
resume in California.
Since those decisions were handed down
last June, an avalanche of challenges have flooded U.S. federal
courts, leaving only 4 state bans unchallenged.
“The evolution of the cases that
challenge legislation against marriage in the United States have made
the great weight of scientific, legal and historic authority that is
in favor of allowing same-sex marriage clear,” wrote Hunter T.
Carter of the New York City Bar Association. “The cases also
demonstrate that the arguments against marriage between people of the
same sex are easy to refute. And they are often based on refuted
science, animus or religious beliefs that should not be taken into
account in the determination of public policy.”
The briefs were submitted in a case
asking Colombia's Constitutional Court to recognize the marriages of
two male gay couples.
The men were allowed to marry based on
a ruling handed down by the same court in 2011, which said that gay
and lesbian couples have the same rights as heterosexual couples and
ordered lawmakers to remedy the situation by June of last year. If
the lawmakers failed to act, the judges ruled, then “gay couples
can go to a notary and with the same solemnity of a heterosexual
marriage enter a union similar to one between a heterosexual couple.”
Lawmakers failed to meet the June 20
Inspector General Alejandro Ordonez
Maldonado moved to nullify the marriages of a handful of couples who
exchanged vows after the deadline passed.
The Constitutional Court agree to hear
the couples' cases on April 1.