Something’s Afoot in Louisiana

It’s not often that LGBT news comes pouring out of Louisiana, but
in the past week we’ve seen two major developments involving the
Pelican State.

Just before Christmas, US District Court Judge Jay Zainey issued a
ruling in favor of Family Equality Council supporters Oren Adar and
Mickey Ray Smith, a gay, adoptive couple now living in California.
A few years back, Adar and Smith adopted a child born in Louisiana
and petitioned the state to issue a new birth certificate.
Louisiana officials claimed that the state doesn’t recognize
unmarried couple adoptions and therefore would not issue a new
birth certificate with both fathers’ names. Adar and Smith were
living in New York at the time, which had issued a legally binding
adoption decree.

Fast forward to December 23, 2008, when Judge Zainey said the US
Constitution was clear on the issue. The Full Faith and Credit
Clause ensures that one state recognize the legally binding
contracts and rulings of others. The judge has ordered Louisiana to
issue a new birth certificate to the family.

This is a major victory for our families, showing that our legal
relationships should stand from state to state!


Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal–heralded as a front runner for the
2012 Republican presidential nomination…some four years out–has
just appointed a slew of anti-gay, anti-science partisans to the
state’s Commission on Marriage and Family. The Commission,
inaugurated two governors ago, assesses the state of marriage and
family life and makes policy recommendations to strengthen and
protect families.

However, with appointments like Tony Perkins from the Family
Research Council and Gene Mills from the Louisiana Family Forum
(both right wing groups), there’s no doubt what kind of
recommendations this commission will make.

We’ve got our eye on Louisiana.

LGBT people live in all 50 states and in 99% of counties
nationwide. The radical right in this country needs to start
second-guessing their strategy of attacking us where they think us
weakest. As a national community of LGBT people, parents, family
and friends, we will no longer stand for these terrible attacks on
our families–anywhere.

*Hat tip to Lambda Legal, the legal organization that
represented Adar and Smith in their case.