The Washington State Supreme Court has overturned a 2011 ruling that barred a mother from discussing her sexual orientation with her children.
No, she isn’t into anything totally freaky, like inflatable pool animals. She’s just a plain old lesbian.
Regardless, six years ago, Rachelle Black, a stay-at-home mom, came out to her conservative “Christian” husband of nearly 20 years. They got a divorce and somehow he managed to get both custody and a ruling stopping her from talking about the fact that she’s gay with her kids.
Black was ordered to “refrain from having further conversations with the children regarding religion, homosexuality, or other alternative lifestyle concepts.”
According to New Now Next, she was also barred from “exposing her sons to LGBT-related literature, films or events, providing them with ‘symbolic clothing or jewelry,’ or otherwise ‘engaging in conduct that could reasonably be interpreted as being related to [LGBT] topics,’ unless those activities were specifically approved by the children’s therapist.”
That’s the weird news. The good news is that last week a higher court determined that the decision was unconstitutional, and overturned it.
In a mild understatement, Chief Justice Mary Fairhurst wrote: “We are not confident the trial court here approached the parenting plan with an attitude of neutrality regarding sexual orientation that fairness demands.”
“If a parent’s sexual orientation is wrongfully considered in a child custody case, discrimination is baked in to every layer of that decision,” said David Ward of Legal Voice, which argued Black’s case. “We applaud the Supreme Court for recognizing this, and we hope this decision will send a strong message to other courts: Discrimination against LGBTQ parents has no place in the courtroom.”