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Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes draw attention to marriage law

The Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes have drawn a lot of media attention for their non-discriminatory marriage law in Oklahoma.

The state constitution bans same-sex marriage. But the tribe's law doesn't mention gender -- it only requires both applicants to be Native American and to live within the tribe's jurisdictional area.

So far, two same-sex couples received marriage licenses while a third has filed paperwork. Darren Black Bear, a tribal member, and his partner, Jason Pickel, received the second.

“We’ve already seen the best and the worst in each other. We’ve already experienced all that. We just want the same benefits and we just want to be treated the same,” Black Bear told the Associated Press.

Despite Oklahoma's ban, Black Bear's marriage will be recognized by the federal government, several states and a handful of tribes, mainly in other states. Four tribes in Oklahoma do not recognize same-sex marriage.

Get the Story:
Gay couple in Oklahoma to marry after obtaining tribal marriage license despite state ban (AP 10/25)
How Did a Gay Couple Legally Marry in Oklahoma? (Slate 10/25)

Related Stories:
Editorial: Tribe leading way to marriage equality in Oklahoma (10/24)
Same-sex couple plans wedding under Cheyenne-Arapaho law (10/23)
Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes recognize same-sex marriages (10/22)

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