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'Milk' screenwriter Dustin Lance Black talks Prop 8

Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black
Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black
Courtesy of Dustin Lance Black

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The legal challenge to Prop 8 in the Supreme Court was organized by a group called the American Foundation for Equal Rights. Oscar-winner Dustin Lance Black is one of the group's founding board members.

Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black is one of the group’s founding members. Black one an Oscar for the screenplay of ‘Milk,’ and he also wrote the play "8" about the trial of the same sex marriage ban which took place in a federal court in San Francisco.

Black was still in the midst of catching his breath this morning, after hearing the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on Prop 8 and DOMA. The rulings are an example of how the Supreme Court believes that the LGBT people are deserving of equal protection, explained Black.

“They do believe that the LGBT people are deserving of equal protection – that’s huge,” said Black on Take Two. “I will say that, and it’s kind of in the words of Harvey Milk: this sent a resounding message of hope.”  

Black explained how his older brother came out to him over the phone while he was in San Francisco working on the film “Milk.”

“At that time, I was so focused on the equality fight in California and the looming threat of Proposition 8, and what it would mean for us to have the freedom to marry and whether our relationships would be recognized or not,” said Black.

While the ruling of Proposition 8 comes as a victory for many, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done in the fight for marriage equality for 37 other remaining states which do not legally recognize same sex marriage, explained Black.

Black’s older brother Marcus, an advocate for LGBT rights, lost his battle to cancer January 2012. His brother had lived in Virginia – a state that has not lifted the ban on same sex marriage.

Marcus had passed down a ring to Dustin, which he now sports on his finger – it’s a reminder that he will not stop the fight for equality.  

“Every speech I give, and every decision day like this, I look at it and I know he’s with me and enjoying it. Looking at the ring on my finger today, he would still not be equal in the state of Virginia. And I’m not going to stop this fight until I know that my big brother could have enjoyed the same freedoms that I’m able to enjoy in California,” said Black.

Black will be emceeing at a rally in celebration of the rulings in West Hollywood at 5:30 p.m. at the intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and San Vicente Boulevard.

Monica Luhar contributed to this report.