DOMA decision draws criticism and praise - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

National Gay Marriage Laws

DOMA decision draws criticism and praise

Adrienne Critcher with the Northwest Louisiana gay advocacy group, People Acting for Change and Equality, says "The tide has turned" with the decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act. Adrienne Critcher with the Northwest Louisiana gay advocacy group, People Acting for Change and Equality, says "The tide has turned" with the decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act.
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

Wednesday's U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act does not affect Louisiana much because states are not required to recognize gay marriage.

However, both sides of the argument, including those who advocate for gay marriage and those who advocate for marriage between a man and a woman, agree that the decision is a game changer.

"These decisions are the beginning of the end of marriage as we know it," said Joel Pearce, a Shreveport attorney with the Alliance Defending Freedom. That's a conservative Christian group that opposes gay marriage.

"The tide has turned. Things are changing," says Adrienne Critcher. She's with P.A.C.E. - People Acting for Change and Equality, which is a gay advocacy group for Northwest Louisiana.

"Love is love. People respect that. People respect families," said Critcher.

Critcher and Pearce have very different views of the Supreme Court's decision to strike down a section of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The decision allows the federal government to recognize gay marriage.  

"And so that's a really big thing because the federal government gives married couples thousands of federal benefits," said Critcher.

"Which raises some disturbing questions, what if a father was to marry his adult son in order to avoid paying state taxes?" asks Pearce. He believes the pro gay marriage groups are not advocating for the creation of families or the acceptance of a group of people, he argues they're trying to destroy marriage.

"Something I think that's even more important than those benefits is the dignity and respect that will now be afforded to these couples," said Critcher.

Only a handful of states recognize gay marriage. And nothing requires the other states to do the same. Louisiana is among the states that will not recognize gay marriage.

Copyright 2013 KSLA. All rights reserved.

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