August 24, 2012
By Jacob Combs
We spend a lot of time on this site delving into the legal complexities of the many DOMA cases making their way through the courts, using shorthand names for those cases like Pedersen, Perry and Windsor. But every now and again it’s important to stop and remember that those case names are almost always the names of decent, everyday Americans who, because of their sexual orientation, are treated differently by their government, and who have made it their mission to improve the lives of gay and lesbian Americans across the country.
One of those women is Edie Windsor, for whom the DOMA case Windsor v. USA is named. Edie was forced by DOMA to pay more than $360,000 in estate taxes following the death of her wife, with whom she had been partnered for decades. As we here at Prop8TrialTracker.com follow her case as it makes its way to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and possibly the Supreme Court this fall, sometimes the human story of Edie’s life can fall out of focus.
That’s why I thought today, as we end this week, there could be no better way to start the day’s coverage than this incredible video from In The Life Media. It’s called “Edie Takes on DOMA,” and it shows this remarkable woman in all her strength and compassion. I saw Edie marching proudly in New York City’s pride parade this summer, cheered on by an adoring crowd, where people stopped her and thanked her for what she was doing, and my heart swelled when I saw the pure joy on her face.
But above all else, it’s one simple statement that Edie made back when she won her case in the court for the Southern District of New York that has made her an inspiration to me. Upon hearing the news of her court win, Edie said, her first reaction was, “I need to tell Thea immediately. So I walked around, looking at the pictures and I said, ‘Oh honey, look what’s happening.’”
That is love, and that’s what this fight is really about.