By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — With the US Supreme Court today turning away seven same-sex marriage cases — effectively allowing gay couples in five more states to marry — one of the leaders of Philadelphia’s gay and lesbian community is praising the high court’s announcement.

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The decision by the Supreme Court not to hear the appeals in five states essentially makes same-sex marriage legal now in a total of thirty states and the District of Columbia.

Malcolm Lazin, founder of the Philadelphia-based Equality Forum, is thrilled.

“I did not expect to see this in my lifetime,” Lazin said following today’s announcement.  “I don’t think that most gay folks ten years ago, maybe even five years ago, thought that they would see it in their lifetime.”

(File photo)

(File photo)


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And Lazin says the US Supreme Court’s announcement will spur change in the twenty states that still don’t allow same-sex marriage.

“In almost all of those states there are now legal challenges,” he tells KYW Newsradio, “and so it will take probably over the next year or two years for those cases to be decided — although I think likely sooner than later.”

Lazin says the importance of this change goes beyond the legal benefits of marriage.  He says he knows many gay couples who had been together for years and even decades, and have now finally gotten married.
“Without exception, each of them have told me that it just was such a magical moment for them, and for their family and friends. It’s really life-changing,” Lazin said.

 

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