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14 September 2017 - Gay Rights Activist Edith Windsor Dies at 88

Edith Windsor, who led fight for federal benefits for same-sex couples, dies at 88
Emily Langer (The Washington Post, 13/09/2017)

Decades after the fact, the diminutive self-described “old lady” joyfully recalled the day in 1967 when the love of her life dropped to the ground and asked, “Edie Windsor, will you marry me?”

Her sweetheart presented her with a round diamond brooch. A ring would have raised too many suspicions. Her lover, Thea Spyer, was a woman, and in 1967 the notion of same-sex marriage seemed closer to fantasy than to the most remote reality.

Their engagement would last 40 years, until 2007, when the two New Yorkers were officially married in Canada. By that time, Spyer, then 75, was paralyzed from multiple sclerosis. Ms. Windsor, a retired high-ranking IBM computer programmer, was 77. Spyer had not much time to live, and they decided they could not wait on the United States for the privilege to wed.

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Legalizing same-sex marriage
 
Edith Windsor, icon of gay rights movement, dies aged 88
Molly Redden (The Guardian, 13/09/2017)
 
Edith Windsor, the woman who broke barriers and became a gay rights icon when she sued the federal government to recognize her same-sex marriage, died on Tuesday at the age of 88.

Windsor was the lead plaintiff in the 2013 US supreme court case that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996, giving gay and lesbian couples access to federal benefits and laying the foundation for the landmark decision to legalize same-sex marriage across the country in 2015.

The case was a watershed moment in the history of the United States’ LGBT rights movement.m historical photos. This is what happens in George Orwell’s classic novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, when a torturer holds up four fingers and delivers electric shocks until his prisoner sees five fingers as ordered.”


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Pioneer

Edith Windsor Remembered as 'Great' Pioneer for Gay Rights
The Associated Press (The New York Times, 13/09/2017)

Love made Edith Windsor a married woman. Widowhood made her a gay rights pioneer.

Facing a big tax bill after the death of her first spouse, Windsor took on the federal law that prevented her from enjoying the same inheritance tax break she would have gotten if she was married to a man.

She took the fight to the Supreme Court, which struck down critical parts of a U.S. marriage law in a ruling that helped pave a path toward legalizing same-sex nuptials nationwide.

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Activist

The Legacy of Edith Windsor
Richard Socarides (The New Yorker, 13/09/2017)
 
Edith Windsor, who died yesterday, at the age of eighty-eight, came to represent, more than any other person, the stunning success of the gay-rights movement over the past decade. She was, for those of us in the L.G.B.T. community, our Rosa Parks. She was a hero almost without detractors; she was often blunt, but she personified courage, which is what it took for a gay person to bring a public legal claim for equality. Her 2013 Supreme Court case was not about gay marriage directly—it was about the interplay of state and federal law as it related to marriage. But, after it was decided in her favor, declaring the federal Defense of Marriage Act (doma)—which barred federal recognition of legally valid same-sex marriages—unconstitutional, it set the Court on an unstoppable path toward its landmark ruling two years later, declaring a nationwide right to same-sex marriage equality.

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Last update September 14, 2017
Créé le September 14, 2017
ISSN 2107-7029
DGESCO Clé des Langues