Today, at the Freedom to Marry Day counter action in Tucson, AZ a lesbian couple found a loop-hole and used it to get a “valid” marriage license. The validity of the issuance and the truthfulness of the couple are already being called into question. Let the controversy begin!
The event was sponsored by the Marriage Equality USA – Arizona chapter. It is similar to many other such events happening today through Saturday. The other events are also sponsored by local Marriage Equality USA chapters (link to listing below). Basically, same-sex couples are going into local clerk’s offices and requesting a marriage license. All most every one of these has and will be denied. The object here is to bring local attention to the issue. Enter the resourceful and crafty lesbians of Arizona.
While on their lunch break, Sheri and Theresa decide to stop by the local Tuscon event to lend their support. During the event they decide to go for it. After being committed to each other for over 2 years, why not? ‘Let’s get married’! The couple could hear the reasons the other couples there were being denied. Because they either inaccurately filled out the “gender” section or, God forbid, filled it out truthfully and accurately. But these these ladies noticed something.
You don’t have to fill out the “gender” section. The assistant clerk at the ladies window agreed. Voilà! A lesbian couple gets a marriage license in Arizona! It all boils down to this loophole .. The state statute governing the wording of marriage licenses does not require a person to swear an oath attesting to their gender. If you fill it out and lie, you’ve committed perjury. If you fill it out truthfully, well… they’ll deny it. But nothing says you have to provide information that isn’t required…
Now here’s where it gets fun. According to a friend in Arizona, Kimberly Matas, of the Arizona Daily Star, will be reporting tomorrow that the clerk that issued the license to Sheri and Theresa claims the couple lied to her about their gender. Seriously? She knew damn well they are female. First off, there was nothing but same-sexers applying for marriage licenses and the clerks office knew this, as did the police outside running off demonstrators. Second, they told her they were a lesbian couple. Third, they actually look like women! Fourth, if she thought they were a hetero couple…then why was she questioning them? Why did she call over her supervisor for assistance? Sounds like BS to me. What do you think?
But we know right now, the various anti-queer groups are out there are on the phones calling everyone they can. Hoping to get this legal and valid marriage license revoked. But have no fear. We are mobilized and ready to defend this couples marriage. Marriage Equality USA is working with or contacting Lambda Legal, NCLR, GLAAD and the ACLU. Plus, all the local chapters of Marriage Equality USA are spreading the word… and of course there is this gay blog and the legion of GLBT bloggers I call ‘friend’.
Love will prevail!!!
What do you think? Should the license be upheld? Are you packing your bags right now… to get your marriage license in Tucson, AZ?