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Equal parents; equal rights

If you raise a kid, you're a parent -- whatever your gender, sexuality, or marital status.
 
 
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One of the most classic divorce lines ever is to tell the children: we aren't stopping being your parents, we're just stopping being a couple. But until yesterday's historic California Supreme Court ruling, that legally just wasn't true.

The court became the first in the nation to grant full parental status to same-sex partners, regardless of their marital status or biological connection to the child.

"The court is now protecting the children of same-sex parents in gay families in the same way children are protected with heterosexual couples in heterosexual families," said Jill Hersh, an attorney who argued one of the cases.

While the homophobes will have their usual field day about the ruling, saying that parenthood, like marriage, is between "a man and a woman," it's the kind of ruling anyone concerned about family values and responsiblity should be happy with, as the three cases revolved around issues of child-support and visitation rights.

Sigh. Being gay used to be so much fun. Now we get to go to victory parties to celebrate being able to pay child support.

Rachel Neumann is Rights & Liberties Editor at AlterNet.