Thursday, September 29, 2011

Stage collapse in Indiana: Why it Matters

Remember that horrific stage collapse at the Indiana state fair this summer? It killed 7 people and injured many more. One of the people killed was Christina Santiago, from Chicago. The Chicago Trib tells us,
Alisha Brennon and Christina Santiago made their relationship official this past summer, soon after Illinois' civil union law began recognizing same-sex couples.

Now, following Santiago's death, the legal benefits of that union will be put to the test across the state line in Indiana....

Although the Chicago couple entered into a civil union in Illinois, the courts in Indiana will determine whether Brennon has a legal right to seek compensation in her spouse's death, experts said.

The lawsuit highlights a new wrinkle caused by the patchwork of laws on the rights of gay and lesbian couples to marry or form civil unions.

"It's egregious that in Illinois, and other states, your union is recognized and you are treated with some measure of equality. And you travel across the border and become a nonperson," said Brennon's attorney, Kenneth J. Allen, who filed the lawsuit in Marion County, Ind....

Six states allow same-sex marriage. Five states, including Illinois, have civil union laws that give gay couples the same legal rights and benefits as heterosexual couples.

In Indiana, same-sex partnerships are not recognized, and only surviving spouses or family members are allowed to file wrongful-death suits, experts said.
So, they did everything right, but thanks to the bigots of Indiana, they may be reduced to legal strangers. Indiana currently denies legal benefits to same sex couples, and is moving to pass an anti-equality amendment to the state Constitution. And I'm sure that they will feel really good about enshrining that hatred and intolerance. After all, who do these uppity lesbians think they are?

1 comment:

JCF said...

1) Sue (and keep suing)

2) Boycott (phobic locales. Except for spending for LGBT-affirmative political change)