For immediate release
May 26, 2009
Eun Sook Lee, NAKASEC, 323-937-3703
Becky Belcore, KRCC, 773-588-9158
Dae Joong Yoon, KRC, 323-937-3718
Joint Statement by the
National Korean American Service & Education Consortium
Korean American Resource & Cultural Center (KRCC)
Korean Resource Center (KRC)
On the Supreme Court Decision to Uphold Proposition 8
(Los Angeles, CA) Today the California Supreme Court announced their decision to uphold Proposition 8, a ballot measure that was passed by voters last November 4, 2008 that banned marriage between same-sex couples.
In May 2008, the Supreme Court in a 4-3 ruling stated that same-sex couples had the same fundamental “right to marry” as heterosexual couples. Opponents to marriage equality retaliated by placing Proposition 8 which sought to change the state constitution to only recognize marriage between a man and woman on the November, 2008 ballot. Today’s decision upholds Proposition 8 but does preserves the 18,000 marriages performed between the Court’s May 2008 decision and November 4, 2008 when Proposition 8 passed.
“We are deeply disappointed by the Supreme Court’s ruling. There are 66,000 LGBT Asian and Pacific Islanders in California, the largest in the nation, and to say that they do not have the same rights is discriminatory and unjust. As people of color and immigrants, we understand far too well the cycle of discrimination and we will stand and work with the Lesbian and Gay community so that all community members are given the same rights and protections under the constitution,” said Eun Sook Lee, executive director of NAKASEC.
“In the months since the case was argued, three states have legalized same-sex marriage – Iowa, Vermont and Maine. Initiatives are also moving forward in New York, New Jersey and New Hampshire. While the decision today is a blow to achieving equality for all, we are optimistic that marriage equality will be a restored right,” said Becky Belcore, executive director of KRCC of Chicago.
“Today’s ruling reminds us of the work ahead. For the Korean American community, we must continue to have conversations with our community members around the issues facing the LGBT community and begin building the bridges so that tolerance replaces intolerance, understanding replaces ignorance and together we build a harmonious community,” said Dae Joong Yoon, executive director of KRC of Los Angeles.