The big business alliance for same sex marriage
Large American corporations are joining together in support of gay marriage and the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act.
By Kendall Tich
The Human Rights Campaign recently announced the alliance of large American corporations in the fight for same sex marriage.
Its goal is to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act which will give same-sex married couples rights that they have never had before.
The DOMA of 1996 is a federal law that denies federal recognition of same-sex marriages.
It also authorizes states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages licensed in other state, meaning that if a gay married couple moves from a state in which same sex marriage is recognized to a state where it is still illegal, they can be denied the benefits of marriage.
With the Tina Beattie controversy still looming in the minds of many USD students, this is a way for the LGBT community at USD and across the country to sense the promise of these large companies and recognize their support.
Thirteen businesses have signed the act so far, including eBay, Marriott International and Armani Exchange.
More and more corporations have become increasingly supportive of this cause and are expressing interest in signing the repeal.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos recently said “I do” to supporting same-sex marriage, and other company owners continue to step forward with that same stance.
Similarly, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and CEO Steve Ballmer have each donated $100,000 to the effort for legalizing gay marriage.
Since USD is located in California, where according to the Public Policy Institute of California, 44% of the state identifies themselves as Democratic, this repeal is something to be aware of as it is affecting the work force that college students enter upon graduation.
It will also change the lives of same-sex couples across the country, including many college students with hopes of being able to marry whoever they choose.
The repeal of the DOMA will give same sex married couples more than 1,000 benefits that they do not currently have.
If the repeal is successful, they will be able to file taxes jointly, receive Social Security benefits and qualify for specified tax exemptions.
The Human Rights Campaign with the support of large corporations has said that DOMA is both unconstitutional and bad for businesses because it creates problems with taxes as they try to treat all employees fairly.
Currently, same-sex couples have to pay federal income tax on health benefits that are provided to a spouse through employer-sponsored insurance plans.
By repealing DOMA, same-sex couples will no longer have to deal with the financial and time consuming burden of tax reimbursements and separation of taxes and insurance plans.
As more USD students become aware of this new coalition of businesses, it is hard not to agree with the support they are giving towards the repeal of DOMA.
“I think it’s great to hear about big businesses standing up in support of same-sex marriage” said junior Amanda Johnson. “As more and more people speak out in support of this cause, more and more positive changes will take place”.
There are currently 120,000 married same-sex couples, but DOMA is threatening to make it more difficult for same-sex couples to get married or have rights when they are married.
More businesses have continued to join the alliance to repeal DOMA.
Google and Groupon were among many other large corporations to sign a letter in support of gay marriage equality.
The results of the petition and repeal are pending, but with the support of many large American corporations, it appears promising.
The benefits that same-sex married couples will receive if this petition is passed will be revolutionary and these new rights will make history as progress towards equality for all married couples, independent of gender and sexuality.