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Let Them End the Marriage They Cannot Enter

Timothy Kincaid

February 14th, 2008

Massachusetts has a law that they will not recognize marriages between non-residents if their marriage would not be recognized in their home state. Because of a plethora of anti-gay amendments and the peculiarities of state laws, only Rhode Island’s gay residents may marry in Massachusetts.

Rhode Island recognizes Massachusetts’ marriages between persons of the same sex, but will not recognize marriages between the same citizens if they stayed home and married. Yeah, it’s confusing, but here comes the oddest part: only Massachusetts residents can divorce in Massachusetts.

But what are they to do if some couple goes to Massachusetts, marries, returns, and then decides to break up. Well the state Supreme Court said that they are not entitled to a divorce – unless the legislature should decide to change the law. It seems that Rhode Island gay marriages are more permanent than even “Covenant Marriages“.

But now there is a proposed solution. No, not treating gay tax payers like their heterosexual neighbors and allowing them to solemnize their commitments.

House Majority Leader Gordon Fox says he’ll file a bill in the General Assembly that would allow married gay couples to divorce.

Recognizing that any battle for equality is a worthy effort, gay Rhode Islanders and those who love them are welcoming this bill.

Steven Brown, executive director of the Rhode Island Affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, said that regardless of where one stands on the issue of same-sex marriage, legalizing a couple’s ability to file for divorce just makes sense.

“Absolutely no public policy is served by requiring people to stay married when they have no desire to do so,” Brown said.

Oh, but there’s opposition. Those who oppose equality will fight this bill and it may well be vetoed by the Republican Governor, Don Carcieri.

Ironically, this may be a situation in which anti-gays are so opposed to gay marriages that they’ll insist on keeping them intact.

Comments

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Jarred
February 15th, 2008 | LINK

This just supports my personal theory that getting marriage equality is simply a matter of waiting until the legal implications of the currently confusing hodge podge of laws becomes too bizarre to be resolved by anything less.

John
February 15th, 2008 | LINK

what a mess! divorce is a right too. isn’t that law ilegal?

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