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Red equal sign on Facebook: What does it mean?

12:52 PM, Mar 26, 2013   |    comments
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KUSA - If you've noticed Facebook and Twitter users switching their profile pictures and avatars to an image of a red equal sign, you're not alone.

The Human Rights Campaign, which advocates equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, promoted an image of a red background with a pink equal sign on it in order to mobilize its supporters. The image on their Facebook page garnered tens of thousands of "shares" and many "likes" on Facebook.

The timing coordinates with the Supreme Court hearing arguments on California's ban on same-sex marriage.

However, Tuesday afternoon, the Supreme Court suggested Tuesday it could find a way out of the case over California's ban issuing a major national ruling on whether America's gays have a right to marry.

Several justices, including some liberals who seemed open to gay marriage, raised doubts during a riveting 80-minute argument that the case should even be before them. And Justice Anthony Kennedy, the potentially decisive vote on a closely divided court, suggested that the court could dismiss it with no ruling at all.

Such an outcome would almost certainly allow gay marriages to resume in California but would have no impact elsewhere.

Kennedy challenged the accuracy of that comment by noting that other countries had had interracial marriages for hundreds of years.

There was no majority apparent for any particular outcome and many doubts expressed about the arguments advanced by lawyers for the opponents of gay marriage in California, by the supporters and by the Obama administration, which is in favor of same-sex marriage rights.

Kennedy made clear he did not like the rationale of the federal appeals court that struck down Proposition 8, the California ban, even though it cited earlier opinions in favor of gay rights that Kennedy wrote.

That appeals court ruling applied only to California, where same-sex couples briefly had the right to marry before voters adopted a constitutional amendment in November 2008 that defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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