Living, Loving, Thinking


Edith Windsor

Molly Redden “Edith Windsor, LGBT rights activist, dies at 88”


Windsor was the lead plaintiff in the 2013 US supreme court case that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996, giving gay and lesbian couples access to federal benefits and laying the foundation for the landmark decision to legalize same-sex marriage across the country in 2015.

The case was a watershed moment in the history of the United States’ LGBT rights movement.

Doma, as the law was known, prevented countless of same-sex couples across the country from claiming a huge array of federal benefits accessible to heterosexual spouses, and epitomized discrimination in the eyes of the gay rights community.

When Windsor’s lifelong partner died in 2009, the IRS billed her for more than $300,000 in estate taxes she would not have owed had the government recognized their marriage*2.


*1:See Dan Roberts and Amanda Holpuch “Doma defeated on historic day for gay rights in US”

*2:See David G. Savage and James Oliphant “Obama administration shifts legal stance on gay marriage”,0,1863741.story [Mentioned in .Nina Totenberg “Meet The 83-Year-Old Taking On The U.S. Over Same-Sex Marriage” Chris Geidner “Meet The Hero Of The Marriage Equality Movement” Karen McVeigh "Widow asks supreme court to strike Doma on grounds of discrimination" Adam Gabbatt “Edith Windsor and Thea Spyer: 'A love affair that just kept on and on and on'”