Jewish Groups Hail Court Decision on Gay Marriage

Appeals Panel Struck Down Defense of Marriage Act

By JTA

Published October 21, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Three Jewish groups welcomed a U.S. court’s decision declaring as unconstitutional the Defense of Marriage Act, which restricts the definition of marriage to that between a man and a woman.

The 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals in New York handed down its decision on Oct. 18. The act was passed in 1996 by both houses of Congress by large majorities.

“This decision reaffirms that the principle of equal treatment means that same-sex couples are entitled to all of the federal rights, protections and benefits of civil marriage,” the Anti-Defamation League said in a statement.

The Reform movement in its statement noted that several of its constituent bodies had joined the ADL in a friend-of-the-court brief supporting the claim of Edith Windsor, who sued the government for forcing her to pay estate taxes after her wife died, even though spouses are exempt under the law from such taxes.

“We oppose DoMA because of our unequivocal support for equal rights for all people, including the right to a civil marriage license, reflecting our understanding that the stamp of the Divine is present in each and every human being,” the Reform movement’s Religious Action Center said in a statement.

Also praising the court was the National Council for Jewish Women, which had opposed passage of the law.

Opponents of gay marriage rights have suggested that they will take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.