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South Florida Residents Weigh In On SCOTUS Marriage Ruling

Rob O'Neal
Florida Keys News Bureau

Though same-sex marriage in Florida became legal in January, South Florida residents are participating in the buzz following Friday’s Supreme Court ruling. A 5-4 vote established that same-sex couples can now marry nationwide.

Residents in Wilton Manors, one of South Florida’s largest and most vocal gay communities, had a personal stake in the court’s decision.

“Now that it’ll be recognized throughout the country, it makes it that much more important to me,” says David Barrett, who has been making plans to marry his partner since gay marriage was legalized in Florida.

Jonathan Frederick pointed out, however, that this decision is far from the end of the road for the gay rights movement. He calls this decision a reminder that “there’s still more work to be done and we all need to continue to work.”

Over at Government Center in Downtown Miami, people had more mixed reactions.

Roselanda Dominique is a lesbian. She says she’s glad the ruling passed despite the amount of time it took to get to this point.

“I just find it funny that it took so long for it to happen,” she says. “One state by one state, by one county, by one section.”

Mohammad Hamdawi, originally from Morocco, says he supports the court’s ruling.

He believes same-sex marriage is as much a fundamental freedom as those listed in the Constitution.

“I think it’s freedom of speech, freedom of sex. Freedom of everything,” he says. “People are free to do what they want as long as they don’t bother nobody else.”

Others were not as sympathetic. Silvester Brown says the political fight against same-sex marriage may be ending but the spiritual one hasn’t.

“Marriage is between a man and a woman,” he says. “And that’s the rule that was given to us by the creator, which is God.”

Equality Florida and their partners will host Decision Day gatherings across the state. For the full list of locations, visit eqfl.org/lovemustwin.