Range of South Florida voices, pro & con, on same-sex marriage rulings

Wilton Manors Mayor Gary Resnick riding in his city's gay pride parade on June. 22. His partner, Eric Bucher, is to Resnick's right.

“It’s really a victory for America. The bottom line is we’re achieving what we want and that’s equality for America. And there’s still many more pages to turn and chapters to be written in this book.”

 

3:32 p.m. | Statement from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Palm Beach:

“We are still reviewing the U.S. Supreme Court’s rulings on the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8. Although the Supreme Court rulings are not what we had hoped for, it does not sway our belief that we as Catholics believe marriage is meant to be a lifelong partnership of mutual and exclusive fidelity between a man and a woman. This union is meant to be open to children who are nurtured by a mother and father who bring unique gifts in the raising of their children and to society. Despite the Supreme Court’s decision, we will continue to promote the beauty and goodness of the institution of marriage and its foundational importance to our culture, especially its importance to children. That is a foundation of our faith and our God-given religious freedom. We encourage the faithful to stand firm in their belief and to pray for marriage and family life,” said Dianne Laubert, director of communications, Diocese of Palm Beach.

2:42 p.m. | Reaction from Wilton Manors

There’s keen interest in the ruling in Wilton Manors.

Only one city in America,  Provincetown, Mass., has a higher concentration of same-sex households than Wilton Manors, the unofficial gay capital of South Florida, according to an analysis of Census Bureau Data by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law.

Wilton Manors, where a majority of the City Commission is gay or lesbian, has 140 same-sex couples per 1,000 households; Oakland Park has 56 per 1,000, putting it at No. 10 on the national list. Overall, Florida has 8.8 same-sex couples for every 1,000 households.

A majority of the city commission there is openly gay or lesbian.

Here’s what Mayor Gary Resnick, who rode Saturday in the city’s gay pride parade with his partner, Eric Bucher, at his side, said via email about the Supreme Court rulings:

“The Supreme Court’s ruling today is one of those rare instances in history that changes our lives.  I am thrilled that the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional.  As Justice Kennedy wrote, “the avowed purpose and practical effect of [DOMA] are to impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma upon all who enter into same-sex marriages made lawful by the unquestioned authority of the States.

“As Wilton Manors has one of the largest gay and lesbian populations per capita in the nation, this decision will have significant consequences for thousands of our residents in Wilton Manors and our region and millions of people around the country – now and in the future.  And this has tremendous personal meaning for me and my partner, Eric, as a gay couple who have been together for over 12 years. 

“Finally gays and lesbians who chose to get married will be entitled to the same benefits and rights as straight married couples. This is huge and we will remember where we were when we learned of this landmark decision.”

2:13 p.m. | Politicians react

South Florida politicians have reacted mostly, but not entirely, along expected party lines.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., criticized the Supreme Court for “a serious mistake today when it overstepped its important, but limited role.”

Other Republicans supported the court decision, including the Broward Young Republicans and Coral Springs City Commissioner Dan Daley. "History was made today. I applaud the US Supreme Court in their decision to strike down DOMA and Prop 8. Equal rights for all, means all. Equality is not a partisan issue and hopefully the FL Legislature got that message loud and clear,” Daley said in an email.

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Miami, tweeted, “#SCOTUS strikes down #DOMA 2day! We must cont fight 4 our Constitutional rights + equality 4 all!”

South Florida’s Democratic U.S. Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Lois Frankel, Ted Deutch, and Frederica Wilson all supported the court’s actions.

“DOMA is unconstitutional, and we take an enormous step forward in the march to #MarriageEquality,” Deutch said via Twitter.