Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)- #3398 - Corporations Line Up on Both Sides of Marriage Battle - Citizen Link

Seventy major corporations have signed a friend-of-the-court brief challenging the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in a case taking place in Massachusetts. The companies — including Microsoft, Starbucks, Google, NIKE, CBS, Aetna, Time Warner Cable, Xerox and Stonyfield Farm — say that DOMA needs to be struck down because employers have a difficult time assessing taxes for homosexual employees in the six states that have legalized same-sex marriage. The companies also claim that because the federal government does not recognize same-sex marriages, it hampers their ability to recruit homosexual employees.

“It does seem as though their argument amounts to saying, ‘We need to do away with traditional marriage because the paperwork is too hard for us,’ ” said Peter Sprigg, senior fellow for policy studies at the Family Research Council. “It seems utterly trivial, so I suspect this is more a political statement they’re making than anything about a burden on their business. “One thing I’ve always found puzzling about corporations pushing for same-sex marriage is that nothing in DOMA prevents private corporations from offering domestic-partner benefits to their homosexual employees,” he continued. “If they feel DOMA is a disadvantage to their ability to recruit gay employees, then I’d think they want to maintain that kind of exclusivity.”

But in a positive turn of events, two corporations have pledged not to discriminate against employees or vendors who publicly support marriage. Bank of America and Cisco Corporation both made the pledge this week after the National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) Corporate Fairness Project contacted them about canceling contracts with The Austin Group, a nearly 20-year-old organization which trains corporate teams. The Austin Group’s senior partner, Dr. Frank Turek, is a Christian who has publicly spoken out against same-sex marriage.  AW: You need to decide based on the companies in the first paragraph,  if you want to support their businesses economically,  and instead try to support companies who do support DOMA.

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