Dan Stevens
Staff Writer

On March 26 and 27, the nine Supreme Court Justices heard cases on California’s Prop 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) respectively. These laws have become controversial in the United States, with polarizing ideals on how each case should be ruled. Prop 8, implemented in California in 2008, banned same sex marriage in the state. DOMA, signed into law in 1996, defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman for federal purposes. 
The United States Constitution was written in a time when the phrase “all men are created equal” meant all straight, white, property owning males were by law superior in many ways to everyone else. America was founded by Puritans seeking religious freedom from England, the ability to practice one’s beliefs and an overall new beginning. In today’s world some are explicitly and lawfully discriminated against because of their sexual orientation. 

By now, many students at Newport Harbor have seen or even reposted the red equal signs on Facebook that represent the public’s support for equality. Indeed, it has become polarizing issue in America with an increasing amount of growing liberal support for it. Often times, one questions what equality is in issues both domestic and abroad. In America, in California and even in the city of Newport Beach, one can see this in issues such as gay marriage. “Everyone deserves the right to happiness regardless or sexual orientation” explained senior Perry Allen, president of the Gay Straight Alliance club (GSA) on campus. 

“It seems ridiculous to me that there was someone in a position of governmental power should be able to dictate how and who people are allowed to love” said Allen on the topic of Prop 8, which, interestingly enough, directly affects only the state of California. If the Supreme Court upholds the law, it would be legal to ban gay marriage, state by state, in all 50 states. Conversely, if it rules the law unconstitutional, it is struck down and, if invalidated broadly, it would also rule unconstitutional all state bans on same sex marriage. “I believe that it will take the law to step in and create equality for all.” Allen stated, voicing his opposition to prop 8. As president of GSA, he represents many LGBT kids on campus that feel similarly. “Going through high school is difficult enough” he said. “Bullies in high school heckle those of differing sexual orientation, but even after they graduate they will still be discriminated against because society and government are still largely unaccepting of this minority.” 

Earlier, in 1996, President Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act barring same sex couples from getting married. Ironically, he now claims that it should be overturned in the Supreme Court because he feels it is incompatible with the Constitution. He now supports gay marriage entirely. “President Clinton has evolved on this issue just like every American has evolved,” said Chad Griffin in an interview with the New York Times. As evidenced by these cases, America is becoming more accepting of gay marriage and, as evidenced by the increasing support via posters, Facebook posts etcetera, Newport Harbor is too. The Supreme Court ruling will be made public before this year’s graduation.

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