No Supreme Court decision on gay marriage: 'Just more waiting'
Just before a decision was supposed to come from the U.S. Supreme Court that could have determined the fate of gay marriage in California, regulars at a West Hollywood Starbucks gathered in anticipation of a decision that never came.
Prior to learning no decision would come Monday, one longtime gay resident said thinking about a potential decision and its implications "gives me the shivers." Judy de Chabert, 53, was the first customer in the door Monday when the coffee shop on Santa Monica Boulevard opened at 6 a.m.
The 28-year West Hollywood resident stressed that for her, the issue of gay marriage comes down to a question of fairness and "love needs to be fair."
Chi Chi LaRue, 53, stopped to talk with De Chabert and said that while he's not "personally a fan of marriage" because "it's not taken seriously nowadays" he also believes there are committed gay couples who should be able to wed if they please.
"It's 2012, and people are getting married when they meet at casinos in Vegas," said LaRue, who also identifies as gay. "Why can't two people who are legitimately in love get married whether they're straight or gay?"
LaRue also said he was "exhausted" by the ups and downs of the gay-marriage debate and when told that the court did not rule on whether to accept the case Monday, he sighed.
"This is the status quo," he said. "This is expected."
De Chabert, a diversity training consultant, who identified as part of the LGBT community, said many in West Hollywood were concerned that Prop. 8, as worded, tricked some voters into voting against gay marriage when they meant to vote for it.
While she said she would like the Supreme Court to eventually determine the issue of gay marriage nationally, for now De Chabert said, she wants the court to stay out of California's case.
"As much as I want this to be about fairness, I moved to California in '84 with a certain amount of hope, because this is the place where I thought all of who I am would be honored and respected," she said. "I've been waiting, and I want it to finally happen."
Told that the court would not rule Monday on whether to take the Prop. 8 case, De Chabert said, "No news isn't bad news. It's just more waiting."
-- Matt Stevens in West Hollywood
Photo: Ken Pierce of Equality Action Now waves a rainbow flag outside the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco in 2011. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times