Saturday, May 17, the plaintiffs in a landmark Massachusetts court case will meet to celebrate 10 years of same-sex marriage.
The seven couples have been getting together every year to mark the first day gay couples were legally allowed to wed in Massachusetts. That followed the Supreme Judicial Court decision called Goodridge v. The Department of Public Health — a lawsuit organized by the advocacy group GLAAD. Gina and Heidi Nortonsmith of Northampton were the only plaintiffs west of Worcester. Gina says they feel proud they helped give legitimacy to so many other couples, especially when negotiating with hospitals or schools or other institutions.
“You don’t have to say, maybe we can get through on the goodness of other souls,” she says. “You can just say, we have this marriage, it’s legal, you must respect it.”
Since the Massachusetts ruling, 17 states, plus the District of Columbia, now have same-sex marriage — and more remain in flux following recent court rulings.