On June 26, 2015, I remember not fully realizing what was happening. I knew it was important…and would impact my life, but how and why we were at this moment in history on this day in history, was confusing. Had someone asked me, I would have surely credited President Obama, which would have been less than partially true. Sure, Obama may have set the stage for the cultural shift that made marriage equality palpable, but how the actual law came into place was not of our beloved Barry’s doing.
The actual law that allowed gay, lesbian, and bisexual Americans to have their matrimonies preserved and protected by federal law came about by the courage and tenacity of Edith Windsor. It was Edie’s willingness to live her life gracefully and unapologetically for 60 years that made June 26, 2015 possible. It was Edie’s willingness to love her wife publicly and passionately, in sickness and in health that made June 26, 2015 possible.
When faced with unfair taxation after the death of her same-sex spouse, Edie stood for the right not to be overtaxed or undertaxed because of who you love and how you love. It was Edie’s refusal to allow injustice to undermine the authentic life that she was determined to live that prompted her to fight for the rights and privileges that all Americans are entitled to.
Thank you, Edie, for having the grace and dignity to fight for the dignity and grace of others.
“If you really care about the quality of somebody’s life as much as you care about the quality of your own, you have made it.” -Edie Windsor
Edith Windsor died September 12, 2017