Same sex couples call ruling a victory for Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH)- It didn’t take long for news to spread that Federal Judge Richard Young struck down Indiana’s same-sex marriage ban.

The people who started the fight, the ACLU were quick to respond.

The same sex marriage lawsuits were filed on March 14 by the ACLU on behalf of several couples who wanted their union legal and recognized in the state. Some of the plaintiffs in the suit said this was not only a victory for them, but for same-sex couples across Indiana.

“It’s an overwhelming day. It’s an awesome, awesome day,” said Plaintiff Steven Stolen.

Sitting beside his husband, Stolen talked about why Wednesday, June 25, will be one he will never forget.

“I think what’s happening with all of our lives today reinforces just how positive it is,” he said.

Stolen and Rob MacPherson joined Attorney Ken Falk and several other same-sex couples at the ACLU Indiana headquarters.

“This is a major victory and it’s a major victory for everyone,” said Falk.

Falk has been representing the group in their fight for equality.

“What we are talking about here is something that is intensely personal, but intensely important to society; marriage,” he said.

Falk said the ruling sends a strong message to some state lawmakers.

“The legislature can act as they wish, but this is a decision based on the United States Constitution under the supremacy clause. It is a supreme law of the land,” he said.

“We’re proud to be the 20th state that this is happening,” said MacPherson.

The other couples described what the ruling means for them.

“Well, we won’t have to file five tax returns anymore,” said Plaintiff Tara Betterman.

Betterman and her wife Melody Layne were married in New York. Layne said there’s finally truth to their union.

“I’m so proud to be able to tell our daughter that we were part of this and that her generation isn’t going to have to worry about this stuff,” she said.

Stolen said their fight has been about one thing.

“It’s a day for us to really be proud we live here and we’ve always said that you know this is not about getting in a fight or anything; this is not about anything more than being treated fairly,” he said.

Two other couples who filed suit got engaged two years ago. They told 24-Hour News 8 they will start the process to get married.

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