Court wins expected to bolster gay pride events

SAN FRANCISCO — Same-sex marriage supporters gathering for gay pride parades in several major U.S. cities got more good news Sunday when Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy denied a last-ditch request from the sponsors of California’s now-overturned gay marriage ban to halt the issuance of same-sex marriage licenses in the nation’s most populous state.

Kennedy turned away the appeal with no additional comment as the 43rd annual pride parade was getting underway in San Francisco, where dozens of couples have gotten married since Friday and where the clerk’s office remained open to issue more licenses on Sunday.

Same-sex marriage opponents asked Kennedy to step in on Saturday, a day after the federal appeals court in San Francisco allowed same-sex marriages to go forward by lifting a hold it had imposed on such unions while a lawsuit challenging the state’s voter-approved ban on gay marriage made its way to and through the high court.

The Supreme Court cleared the way for the marriages to resume for the first time in 4 ½ years when it ruled Wednesday that Proposition 8’s backers lacked standing to defend the 2008 law once California’s governor and attorney general refused to do so.

The two couples who sued to overturn Proposition 8 are riding in a contingent organized by San Francisco’s city attorney. Newlyweds Kris Perry and Sandy Stier of Berkeley, and Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo of Burbank, got married on Friday within hours of the appeals court’s action.

Attorney General Kamala Harris, whose decision not to defend the ban helped secure its defeat, also is participating as a grand marshal. Parade organizers planned to hold a VIP reception for couples who have married in San Francisco over the weekend.

San Francisco was not the only city hosting what were expected to be especially well-attended and exuberant gay pride parades following the court’s decision in the California case and a second ruling granting gay couples the federal benefits of marriage they were previously denied. Large crowds also gathered in New York, Chicago, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Seattle and St. Louis.

The parade in New York City, where the first pride march was held 44 years ago to mark the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Inn riots that kicked off the modern gay rights movement, also was a sort of victory lap for Edith Windsor, the 84-year-old widow who challenged the federal Defense of Marriage Act after she was forced to pay $363,053 on the estate of her late wife.

Windsor was picked as a grand marshal of New York’s parade months ago and planned to walk up Fifth Avenue during the event.

In Chicago, 25-year-old Catherine Gallagher was part of a massive crowd celebrating the court rulings. It was her first time at the pride parade, and she said high court’s decision that says gay married couples should have the same rights as gay ones makes the parade even better.

More in Local News

Young woman missing from Mukilteo found safe

She called her parents and told them she was at a museum in Seattle.

Mom and brother turn in suspect in Stanwood robberies

The man is suspected of robbing the same gas station twice, and apologizing to the clerk afterward.

Derrick “Wiz” Crawford, 22, is a suspect in the homicide of his roommate. (Edmonds Police Department)
Roommate suspected in Edmonds killing found hiding in closet

Police had been searching for him for 10 days before locating him at a house in Everett.

Video shows man suspected of attacking a woman in Edmonds

The man allegedly threw her on the ground, then ran away after the she began kicking and screaming.

Navy to put filter in Coupeville’s contaminated water system

Chemicals from firefighting foam was found in the town’s drinking water.

Officials to test sanity of suspect in Everett crime spree

He allegedly tried to rob and clobber a transit worker, then fled and struggled with police.

Katharine Graham, then CEO and chairwoman of the board of The Washington Post Co., looks over a copy of The Daily Herald with Larry Hanson, then The Herald’s publisher, during her visit to Everett on Sept. 20, 1984. The Washington Post Co. owned The Herald from 1978 until 2013. (Herald archives)
Everett’s brush with Katharine Graham, leader of ‘The Post’

Retired Herald publisher Larry Hanson recalls The Washington Post publisher’s visits.

Former Monroe cop loses appeal on sex crimes conviction

Once a highly respected officer, he was found guilty of secretly videotaping his kids’ babysitter.

Families seek to change wrongful death law

A bill would allow or parents or siblings who wish to pursue a suit for an unmarried, childless adult.

Most Read