As you’ve surely heard by now, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. That means that same-sex couples who were wed in the District of Columbia or in any of the 13 states that allow gay marriage now enjoy the same federal rights that straight couples have always enjoyed. Excuse us, 14 states. After all, the Supreme Court also reversed California’s Proposition 8 ruling, making marriage equality legal there once again. And then there are the 13 countries around the world with marriage equality, plus two more that will have their own same-sex marriage laws go into effect in August.
Unfortunately, it will be a long, long time before the state of South Carolina overturns its constitutional ban on gay marriage. But despite the Palmetto State’s laws, gay and lesbian couples are getting married in Charleston. Interestingly enough, many of the wedding businesses we spoke to for this year’s Pride Issue have worked with same-sex couples in the past. Even if these ceremonies aren’t legally recognized by the State of South Carolina, they’re still happening. Regardless, though, these businesses aren’t taking a side in the debate. They work with couples in love.
This year’s Pride Issue has nothing to do with politics, although you know where we stand. We figured that since Charleston is such a popular wedding destination, and since married same-sex couples can now get federal benefits, that we’d put together a guide to gay marriage in Charleston. Just make sure to get your license somewhere else. —Susan Cohen