West Virginia doesn’t seem the most fertile ground for marriage equality, but that’s where the latest legal challenge is taking place. Lambda Legal has filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in Huntington on behalf of three couples and the child of one couple, claiming that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage violates their rights to equal protection under the Constitution. The suit mirrors a suit filed in neighboring Virginia.
“We have done everything we can to protect and take responsibility for our family but we worry all the time that it isn’t enough,” said Nancy Michael, who is raising a son with her partner, Jane Fenton. “We need the protection that marriage affords.”
The lawsuit contends that West Virginia is sending “a purposeful message” that same-sex couples and their children are “second-class citizens who are undeserving of the legal sanction, respect, protections and support that different-sex couples and their children receive automatically through marriage.”
The challenge is just the latest in a string that promise to resolve once and for all the question of whether the Supreme Court’s piecemeal approach to marriage equality can last for very long.
Photo credit: Lambda Legal