The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), passed by Congress in 1996, defines marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman. As a result, same-sex couples are barred from receiving federal benefits conferred upon married couples, and no state is required to recognize same-sex marriages granted by another state. On February 23, 2011, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Obama Administration had determined DOMA to be unconstitutional, and that the Justice Department would no longer provide legal defense for the law. Meanwhile, many states have adopted measures designed to forbid same-sex marriage. This program examines the issues raised by DOMA, state regulations, civil unions, polygamy, and other constitutional issues related to marriage. This program includes opposing perspectives from the speakers, questions from a student panel, and Q&A with the audience. It aims to encourage a thoughtful exchange of ideas.moreless
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