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Supreme Court should grant equal rights to all

As I watch the nightly news and listen to the oral arguments between the Supreme Court justices and the attorneys in the Proposition 8 and Defense of Marriage Act cases, one question keeps coming to mind: Who would be harmed by allowing equal rights to the LGBT citizens of our country? While the benefit to the LGBT community is obvious, where is the harm to anyone else?

My views unfortunately put me at odds with my Catholic faith. If we are to believe that God created all of us, which I do, and we believe that being gay or lesbian is not a choice, which as the proud father of two gay sons, I believe with all of my heart and soul, I can’t imagine that an all-loving God would create people who are gay or lesbian and then condemn them for their sexuality.

Homosexuality knows no boundaries. Ask Republican Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, whose 21-year-old son recently announced that he was gay, or Supreme Court Justice John Roberts, whose lesbian niece has been attending the proceedings, or even former Vice President Dick Cheney, whose daughter is married to her longtime female partner.

Through all of the debate, what I continue to struggle with is how educated adults can continue to have such a narrow view, at least until a member of their family comes out to announce he or she is gay or lesbian.

I cannot express how grateful I am that my sons live in a more accepting time, but we still have a long way to go. My hope is that the Supreme Court, if not now, at least in my lifetime, will grant equal status to every American. For now, I’d settle for replacing DOMA with DOER (Defense of Equal Rights).

Tony Vaccaro

Williamsville