SDLA Alumni Cheer Marriage Equality


  Rebekah Hook and Shawna Held after receiving their marriage license


  Spouses Jessica Page and Crystal Page

  Davin Widgerow

The U.S. Supreme Court made history today with its Obergefell v. Hodges ruling, which guarantees same-sex couples a right to marry in all U.S. states. The ruling hits home for many in the San Diego Leadership Alliance (SDLA) community.

“Today's Supreme Court decision is the best early wedding gift we could have received! (3 weeks until we're married),” say Rebekah Hook and Shawna Held, alumnae/Board Members of the San Diego Leadership Alliance. “We are overjoyed that our family's right to equal dignity under the law is finally validated. While national marriage equality is an amazing milestone, there is more work to be done for true equality and safety for all; especially for our LGBTQ youth and trans* community. Today we celebrate and continue the fight for justice for all.”

SDLA Alumna and Board Member Crystal Page adds, “It's a great day for families. My spouse and I got married two years ago after SCOTUS' ruling that lifted the ban on marriage equality in California. For us, this meant we could only live, feel safe, and have access to the same rights as our heterosexual counterparts in certain places. Now, our family and many others will no longer need to limit where we can and cannot go based on our sexual orientation. #LoveWins.”

The SDLA aims to bring a diverse cross-section of San Diego, including the LGBT community, into its fold. A few of these alumni were kind enough to share their thoughts here today.

Alumnus Davin Widgerow writes, “The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once noted that ‘the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.’ Today, finally, one of the many long arcs of the moral universe for gay rights and equality has culminated in justice. In my own life, I coursed through the varying stages of struggle and despair on this issue, in living a secret life; in being by consumed by self-denial, self-hatred, shame, and crushing loneliness. But I survived those dark times. I have grown to be at peace with who I am. And today, the supreme law of the land reaffirmed my basic human dignity.

"Many gay people, whether in the United States or elsewhere in the world, are still the victims of dark, abiding, and often fatal hatreds. We must not forget their suffering on this day of great joy. After the rapturous joy has quieted, and the brightness of this historic day has given way to a most-contented night, I will be grateful to live in a country whose continuing mission is the expansion of democracy, equality, and dignity for all people. And I will be grateful that I can now find love and honor that love by choosing to consummate it in marriage. The arc for all of us is indeed long, but today, for me and for countless others, it finally bent toward justice.”

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Alex Southard
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