The Supreme Court’s decision to give equality to same-sex married couples is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t end discrimination against unmarried people.

Marriage offers special rights and benefits, such as hospital visitation, inheritance, tax and survivor benefits, and property rights to spouses.

That leaves out unmarried partners, single people with a special person in their lives, someone wanting a child or grandparent to receive something instead of the other half of a couple (like survivor benefits) or some other person with a loving relationship whose friend is denied the same benefits that married couples receive.

Maybe I don’t have a spouse but want one special relative to visit me in the hospital. Sorry, spouses only. Or have someone other than my spouse receive survivor benefits. Not allowed. Marriage gives spouses special rights that others can’t have.

I hope those who fought so hard for and supported the rights of same-sex couples for marriage equality will also work for equal rights for unmarried people.

Larry Dansinger


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