Whatever the official relationship is called—marriage, civil union, registered partnership—the Center for Inquiry believes it should be the same for same-sex and heterosexual couples. All couples should have equal rights under federal and state law, the Center urges in its recent position paper, “Same-sex Marriage—and Marriage,” available at http://www.centerforinquiry.net/advocacy.
At present, same-sex couples are essentially second-class citizens, even in Massachusetts where they can legally marry. Their marriages or civil unions do not apply outside the boundaries of the state and not on the federal level because of the Defense of Marriage Act passed in 2004. (more…)