Local perspectives on the Federal Defense of Marriage Act

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Same sex marriage was before the United States Supreme Court for a second day Wednesday. This time, some court watchers predict a definitive ruling that could throw out the Federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Opponents of DOMA say the law denies same-sex couples who are legally married under state law important federal benefits that are available to legally married opposite-sex couples.

Charlene Daniels is the director of the support center Like Me Light House in Kansas City. The facility was created by her niece, Chely Wright, country music's first openly gay vocalist.

"Once you no longer have a big secret that you have to hide, then you can open up your life to your friends and family. It's a much better life," Wright said.

Daniels said her niece is living a great life with her spouse in New York and is legally married to a woman.

"But I wonder what are her insurance requirements, what are her taxes? If she worked for the federal government, it wouldn't count for anything because there would be no benefits for her spouse," Daniels said.

Daniels said she hopes the Supreme Court will help make those marriages complete.

Pastor Andrew Currier heads Grace Baptist Church in Kansas City. He said not everyone feels that way.

"What we come up with, from what the bible teaches, is that this isn't conducive to the Christian life style. So we have some qualms and questions. Many of us have friends … family members who are gay. We love them, we are not prejudice against them. We want them to have full rights before the law, and we think that the constitution offers that," Currier said.

The Obama administration has argued that DOMA should be overturned, while House Republicans have stepped in to defend it.

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