The one thing Ed Watson wanted to do was marry his partner, Derence Kernek, before he died. Unfortunately, due to the machinations of anti-gay groups that mired California in the legal nightmare that is Proposition 8, he was unable to fulfill his dream and passed away Wednesday. In a sad ironic twist, he died the day before hearings on the controversial "Prop H8" began.
Gay rights activists lamented Watson's death as a reminder of the harm inflicted on same-sex couples throughout the state because they are denied the right to marry.
"It's ironic that he died on the eve of appeals about peripheral issues around a case that should have been settled more than a year ago," said Richard Jacobs, chairman and founder of the gay rights advocacy group Courage Campaign, as he was en route to San Francisco for a hearing before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. "None of this will matter to Ed or Derence."
U.S. District Judge Vaughn R. Walker ruled on Aug. 4, 2010, that Proposition 8 violated the constitutional rights of gays and lesbians to due process and equal protection under the law. Sponsors of the initiative passed by 52% of Californians who voted in November 2008 have appealed Walker's ruling and won a suspension of it pending the 9th Circuit's ruling.This is sad. How many more LGBTs have to die disappointed before people just admit, like Hillary Clinton did before the UN, that gay rights are human rights?