Sunday, September 11, 2005

So I know this couple...

Image: Curtis Woolbright and Daniel Reyes at the 2004 Wedding March accross the Brooklyn Bridge (click here for more photos of the march).

...sweet guys too. Well, Daniel just sent me this reminder that something other than the primary elections is taking place on Tuesday. Remember that little February court ruling by New York Supreme Court Justice Doris Ling-Cohan saying that denying the right to marriage to same-sex couples was unconstitutional in New York State? Well, we all know that Mayor Mike Bloomberg decided to challenge that ruling, which now brings us to this...

From: Daniel S. Reyes
Sent: Sun 9/11/2005
Subject: Our day in court

Dear Friends,

We wanted send an update on our court case for civil marriage. As you may know, in February the court in NYC ruled that Curtis and I have to right to marry in NYC and so ordered the city clerk to issue marriage licenses. At the same time she issued a stay in the ruling to allow the city the opportunity to respond. (This process is NYS law whenever a municipality is ruled against.) Bloomberg and his band of "merry men" decided to appeal the decision to protect all of us from the apparent "chaos" that will ensue by allowing us to marry. (Remember that when you're voting for mayor! Along with the rest of his anti-gay track record.) As a result, the stay on the ruling is in effect until the matter is resolved by the state's highest court, the NYS Court of Appeals.

In March, both the city and Lambda Legal attempted to get the case fast tracked straight to the State Court of Appeals. The court declined to hear the case and sent it back to the appellate division, the state's intermediate courts. While this was disappointing, it was not unexpected.

On September 13, we will have our day in the appellate court. Oral arguments will be heard from both sides. While the city and lambda have resisted interference from outside conservative groups who want to intervene in our case, they have not been completely successful. Allowance has been made for the Liberty Counsel to file a friend of the court brief against us. They will however not be allowed to speak during oral arguments. The city has additionally decided to play dirty this time around and has resorted to base arguments for denying us civil marriage rights, namely procreation and "standards" created by religious ideals and "tradition." After oral arguments, a decision from the appellate court can come 30 days later or 6 months later or a year later. It will definitely be a waiting game.

Curtis and I will be in attendance and at the press conference following. However, we doubt there will be much coverage as it is primary day also in the city. So keep your fingers crossed and if you live in NYC, don't forget to vote!

Warm Wishes, Daniel & Curtis

[reprinted by permission - AD]

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