PrideMarch
PHOTO: Flickr.com/ehoyer

By AMANDA VENDER

June is known as Pride Month for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) people. President Clinton first declared June to be Gay and Lesbian Pride Month in 2000.

One of the key civil rights issues of LGBTQ people today is the right to marry. Many same-sex couples want the right to marry because they are in love and have been together for many years. They want the right to have their relationship officially recognized as a marriage and to have all of the legal benefits that go with marriage.

A few states allow same-sex couples to marry. But The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a 1996 law, says the federal government will not recognize same-sex marriage. This spring the Obama administration said it would not defend DOMA in some legal actions against it.

Jumoke McDuffe-Thurmond, an eighth-grader in Brooklyn, NY and the son of two moms, thinks that his parents should have the right to get married. “They should get married because they are like any other human being, so I don’t understand why my parents do not have that right.”

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What is LGBTQ? (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning)
Lesbian: a woman who is romantically attracted to other women.
Gay: a man who is romantically attracted to other men.
Bisexual: a man or a woman who is romantically attracted to both men and women.
Transgender: a person who is born a girl, but who identifies as a boy; or a person who is born a boy, but who identifies as a girl.
Queer: a term that includes all LGBT people; often used by youth
Questioning: includes people still forming their gender identity