Eliot Circular

Reedies Press for Marriage Equality

Misha Isaak ’04 reads from a federal judge’s decision striking down Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriage at the headquarters of Oregon United for Marriage. Photo by Gosia Wozniacka/AP

Some cheered. Others howled. A few were wearing go-go boots.

A crowd of 200 people gathered at the Oregon United for Marriage campaign headquarters in Portland in May, smashed inside a conference room too small to fit everyone, to listen to attorney Misha Isaak ’04, who stood behind a podium, speaking to a swirl of television cameras, tape recorders, microphones, and notepads.

Misha was reading from a federal judge’s decision, handed down moments before, on same-sex marriage in Oregon. Representing same-sex couples, Misha had filed suit, arguing that Oregon’s ban on gay and lesbian weddings was unfair and unconstitutional. The judge agreed and struck the ban. Weddings took place that afternoon. By that evening, hundreds were dancing in the streets of southeast Portland, joined by a marching band named LoveBomb Go-Go.

Among the first couples to be wed in Multnomah County were Prof. Ken Brashier [religion 1998–] and his partner, Andrew Wallace, who were married by Portland mayor Charlie Hales.

(This article was adapted from a longer piece published on our website by author and journalist Peter Zuckerman ’03, who served as press secretary for the Oregon United campaign.)