DOMA ruled unconstitutional by bankruptcy court

A federal bankruptcy court in California on Monday ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional.

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles ruled that it is discriminatory to prevent a legally married same-sex couple from filing for joint bankruptcy.

The couple, Gene Balas and Carlos Morales, filed a joint chapter 13 petition. They were married in 2008 in California and remain legally married.

In his ruling, the judge wrote: “This case is about equality, regardless of gender or sexual orientation, for two people who filed for protection under Title 11 of the United States Code (Bankruptcy Code).”

It is “undisputed that the Debtors are a lawfully married California couple,” the judge wrote, adding that the couple came to the court to restructure and repay their debt following extended illnesses and long periods of unemployment.

The U.S. trustee for the case filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds that two men cannot file jointly for bankruptcy. The judge ruled the trustee did not ask for dismissal based on one of the 11 causes listed in bankruptcy law to dismiss, but simply because the couple are two men.

The judge said the trustee filed no relevant case law supporting his position and said the couple should not be singled out for discriminatory treatment. He cited the Obama administration’s position that DOMA is unconstitutional and ruled that, indeed it is.

—  David Taffet

Barista Alvin Cited By Newsweek

Call our very smart Barista Alvin a full-fledged pudit now, as his Pam’s House Blend diary Dear Proposition 8 supporters – You lost because you lied was quoted on Newsweek‘s California Judge Overturns Prop 8:

Jubilant

Don’t take this as gloating, gay blogger Alvin McEwen writes, but it’s pretty clear that Prop 8 was overturned because the claims of supporters, though effective in scaring paranoid voters, simply don’t withstand the scrutiny of the judicial system.

Alvin McEwen:

“In the courts, you must defend your position … Your leaders spun false images of avenging hordes for their reluctance to be questioned in the courts about the unprovoked lies they said in pulpits, in speeches, and on commercials. This time, it didn’t work. The court saw through the phony claims and realized something, which I hope that many of you now do-you have no logical reason to either deny us the right to love or to deny us the ability to protect the ones whom we love.”

Alvin McEwen, Pam’s House Blend

Alvin’s quote was immediately followed by a Maggie Gallagher — of the National Organization For Marriage (NOM) — quote:

Furious

Maggie Gallagher:

Not only was Judge Walker needlessly inflammatory for imputing bigotry to opponents of gay marriage, his opinion was wrong and will be overturned, says Maggie Gallagher, head of the activist group the National Organization for Marriage. She rehashes the arguments NOM has made all along and vows to continue the fight.

Maggie Gallagher, San Francisco Chronicle

Being cited in an Newsweek article ahead of Maggie…just priceless!

So, so seriously, congrats to Alvin on being a PHB pundit of Newsweek notability!

But more importantly than that, congrats to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community; congrats for the values of human rights, freedom, equality, and justice!
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  John Wright