Navajo Nation lawmaker introduces invoice to legalize homosexual marriage

The battle to have same-sex marriage acknowledged by the Navajo Nation continues throughout Delight Month.

Throughout
the tribe’s Delight opening ceremony on June 23, Council Delegate Seth Damon signed and sponsored laws
that will acknowledge same-sex marriages inside the Navajo Nation.

“The
prohibition in opposition to same-sex marriages doesn’t uniformly welcome or
help the well-being of all Diné,” Damon mentioned. “The aim of the
laws I’m sponsoring is to make sure that all Diné are welcome inside
the 4 sacred mountains and to acknowledge all marriages inside the
Navajo Nation.”

The laws additionally amends different provisions inside the Navajo Nation
Code to evolve with this repeal, however the conventional Navajo wedding ceremony
ceremony involving a person and girl shall stay unchanged.

Since
2005, same-sex marriages have been prohibited when the Navajo council
overwhelmingly voted to cross the Diné Marriage Act, even a second time
to override a presidential veto of the act. .

On the time,
same-sex marriages have been prohibited all through the nation, though
there was a rising sentiment to legalize marriages for all. This led to
quite a lot of regional ordinances designed to outline marriage as between
one man and one girl. President George W. Bush would even lean on the
definition throughout his re-election marketing campaign in 2004.

This spurred the Navajo council to cross its Dinė Marriage Act, which
has remained intact, even after the U.S. Supreme Courtroom legalized
same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015.

“We really feel it’s in the very best
curiosity of the Navajo Nation to repeal Title 9 so that everybody can
benefit from the full advantages of authorized recognition of their marriages inside
the Navajo Nation, whether or not our kinfolk are heterosexual, gay,
bisexual, transgender, non-gender particular, two-spirit, or Nádleehí,”
Damon mentioned in a press launch.

Nevertheless, some progress has been made in recognizing the tribe’s LGBTQ+
residents with the twenty fourth Navajo Nation Council passing a decision in
2020 to ascertain Diné Delight Week to be held each third week in June to
shield Navajo Nation residents from discrimination based mostly on sexual
orientation, gender id and marital standing amongst different issues.

“We see ourselves as sacred human beings,” Alray Nelson, Diné PRIDE
co-founder and govt director, mentioned. “And with that data, we
train each LGBTQ younger individual not solely is the Navajo Nation on the
proper aspect of historical past, however its leaders additionally help our neighborhood.”

Eugene Tso, a former Navajo Nation Council delegate, joined Damon on the signing ceremony. He launched comparable payments in June 2022 and in March 2022. The March invoice was voted down in its early committee conferences, finally by no means passing.

“We
stay with folks we love. There must be no dialogue about it when
this laws involves the ground,” Tso mentioned in an announcement. “Why
would you debate it? That is who we’re. We’re Diné.”

Navajo Nation President Buu Nygren was in attendance on the
laws signing the place together with Navajo Nation Vice President
Richelle Montoya and Navajo Nation Council Speaker Crystalyne Curley
grew to become the primary Navajo leaders to proclaim June 18-25 as Navajo Nation
Delight Week.

He acknowledged what Damon launched and mentioned “…will probably be as much as everybody right here to submit their feedback for its passage.”

The
laws started its five-day public remark interval on June 23 and
will finish earlier than tribal council committees will hear it on June 29.
Feedback could be emailed or mailed. Extra info is right here.