While more states have legalized same-sex marriages, gay couples whose marriages have fallen on hard times continue to find it difficult to legally divorce their spouse. The problem is that some states feel by permitting a same-sex divorce, they are by default acknowledging same-sex marriage. For example, two women who were married in Massachusetts later moved to Texas, a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage. When the women began divorce proceedings in February 2011, Texas’ general attorney, attempted to stop the judge from allowing their dissolution. His motion stated that because Texas has a constitutional ban on gay marriage, the judge did not have the authority to grant a divorce. The motion was later thrown out by the judge because it was not filed in a timely manner. In a more recent case, two men who were married in New York on September 2011, filed for divorce in Ohio. Ohio, like Texas, does not recognize same-sex marriages and civil unions per a 2004 constitutional amendment. A Columbus judge signed off on the couple’s divorce. Again, the judge hearing the men’s case was met with an onslaught of criticism — called “rogue” by one man in an email to the Columbus Dispatch, a local newspaper. The attorney for one of the men in the case defended the judge’s decision to hear and approve the divorce; stating that Ohio’s constitutional amendment applies only to same-sex marriage and says nothing about same-sex divorce. Ultimately, the real hurdle lies in the fact that
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