Georgia Supreme Court says kids can meet dad’s gay friends

Well, they made it almost into the 21st Century. Some rightwing newspapers headlined the story so it sounded like the chance of catching plague had been reduced. Slightly.

Georgia political hacks want Edwards on the state Supreme Court

The Georgia Supreme Court has thrown out a judge’s order that prohibited children in a divorce case from having any contact with their father’s gay and lesbian friends.

The ruling was hailed by gay rights groups who said the decision focuses on the needs of children instead of perpetuating a stigma on the basis of sexual orientation.

The state high court’s decision overturned Fayette County Superior Court Judge Christopher Edwards’ blanket prohibition against exposing the children to their father’s gay partners and friends…

The Fayette County judge’s prohibition “assumes, without evidentiary support, that the children will suffer harm from any such contact,” Justice Robert Benham wrote. But there is no evidence that any member of the gay and lesbian community has engaged in inappropriate conduct in the presence of the children or that the children would be adversely affected by being exposed to members of that community, he said…

Beth Littrell, staff attorney for the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund in Atlanta, said the visitation order was the most sweeping of its kind she had seen in Georgia.

“Placing a blanket ban on children’s association with gay people not only hurts this father’s relationship with his children, it is blatant discrimination,” Littrell said. “The court has done the right thing today by focusing on the needs of the children instead of perpetuating stigma on the basis of sexual orientation.”

Littrell was pleased the ruling took decisions like this away from “the prejudices of individual judges.”

Of course, the kids still run the risk of the case being carried up to the U.S. Supreme Court and the prejudices of 4 or 5 reactionary judges who work very hard at standing in the way of change.

Take a look at the history of American Supreme Courts sometime and you realize there’s nothing new about a court being characterized as standing in the way of progress for the whole nation. Despicable and foolish.

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