Fighting for equality in line at customs

Posted by Troy Petenbrink
November 27, 2011 7:43 PM |

Rudy Moliet loves living in Key West, loves to travel, loves his husband but hates inequality.

On his blog, Moliet recounted a recent "lunch counter moment" that happened at Houston's George Bush Intercontinental Airport between him and an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent:

After a wonderful holiday in the land of liberté, égalité, fraternité, we arrived back in our own country to be assaulted by our own government. When Harry and I approached the customs officer to enter, we walked up together as did every other married couple in line. I was ordered to “get back in line, only families can come up here together."

This was my lunch counter moment. I calmly told the immigration officer that Harry was my husband and that I would not get back in line. He became confrontational. “We don’t recognize your marriage, you are not a family unit under the law, and I order you to get back in line," he barked.

I refused. I took a stand. I told the officer, “I am not a second-class citizen, I am an American citizen, and the only way I will go to the back of the bus is if you arrest me and put me there." It was quite a stand-off, a stare down. He was armed with a gun; I was armed with a greater weapon: the Constitution of the United States. The Constitution won. He backed off, begrudgingly letting me go through immigration with my husband -- just like every other couple.

Read Moliet's complete posting here.

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