Equality Texas Releases Statement
TEXAS – June 30, 2017 – On February 27, 2017, Equality Texas filed an amicus brief with the Texas Supreme Court in the case of Jack Pidgeon and Larry Hicks v. Mayor Sylvester Turner and City of Houston (formerly Pidgeon et al, v. Parker). Equality Texas filed the Amicus Brief on behalf of 35,000 Texans, including married LGBT Texans like L.J. and M.P. whose rights are directly implicated by this case.
The Texas Supreme Court's opinion today in the Pidgeon case clings to unconstitutional notions of "separate but equal" that were long ago laid to rest in this nation. The justices' holding that Obergefell v. Hodges does not require equal treatment under the law for LGBT married couples is patently indefensible. This is a sad day for Texas as our highest court joins the ranks of Mississippi and Arkansas in refusing to abide by the Constitution's mandate to recognize the dignity and equality of all persons. Equality Texas is hopeful that the City of Houston will appeal this horrendous decision to the United States Supreme Court in order to ensure equality for the marriages of all Texans.
By punting the case back to the lower court, the Texas Supreme Court undermines the U.S. Supreme Court's 2015 Obergefell marriage equality decision. The U.S. Supreme Court has made clear that marriage equality is settled law and requires states to treat married same-sex couples equally in every area of the law.
Extreme partisan politics has no place at the Texas Supreme Court and this decision is sure to damage the Texas brand and further tarnish the reputation of this state as being unwelcome and hostile to LGBTQ Texans.
Equality Texas is the largest statewide organization dedicated solely to securing full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Texans through political action, education, community organizing, and collaboration.