Equality In Mississippi: An Open Letter

 Campaign for Southern Equality

The fight for equality has come to Mississippi. DOMA lawyers recently  filed a federal lawsuit aimed at ending Mississippi’s ban on same-sex marriages. We won’t be making the final decision on this case, but we do have a voice, and  I feel that it is important for everyone to stand up for equality in whatever manner they are able. With that in mind, please feel free to use the message below (and amend it how you choose) to contact you representatives.

Governor Phil Bryant
Office of the Attorney General of Mississippi
Harold Pizzetta, Special Assistant Attorney General
Walter Sillers Building
Suite 1200
550 High Street
Jackson, MS 39201
FACEBOOK

Judge Carlton Reeves
501 East Court Street, Suite 5.500
Jackson, MS 39201
Telephone: 601-608-4140
reeves_chambers@mssd.uscourts.gov

House of reps: http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/members/hr_membs.xml
Senate: http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/members/ss_membs.xml


 

I was recently informed that Robbie Kaplan is suing the state of Mississippi on behalf of two same-sex couples who are seeking full equality under the law. Specifically, these individuals would like to end the state’s ban on same-sex couples’ marriages. Mississippi uses marriage as the basis for determining a number of different benefits. As such, the fact that same-sex marriage is banned in our state is extremely concerning, and I am writing because I feel that it is important for everyone to stand up for equality in whatever manner they are able.

In recent years, our country has moved towards granting full equality to individuals who are LGBTQ. In fact, the United States Supreme Court recently ruled (in Windsor v. United States) that Section 3 of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, the 1996 law that denies legally married same-sex couples over 1,100 protections and responsibilities of marriage, is unconstitutional.

That’s an awful lot of protections and responsibilities. So you can see that recognition of marriage is of the utmost importance for Mississippi residents (for things like power of attorney, health insurance, taxes, inheritance rights etc.).

As such, I am contacting you because I want to urge you to do all you can to support full equality for all Mississippi citizens.

In Mississippi, same-sex couples do not have hospital visitation rights. In Mississippi, landlords can discriminate against individuals based on gender and sexual orientation. In Mississippi, employers can discriminate against individuals based on gender and sexual orientation. In Mississippi, individuals of the same gender cannot adopt a child together.

In short, Mississippi currently discriminates against same-sex couples in a number of ways. So I am asking you to take this first, great step. I am asking you to stand up for equality and justice. Please do whatever you can to ensure equality for all of us.

 

*Please let me know if I have any typos etc. I am horrible about catching them in my own writing.

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