The words “bride” and “groom” – along with “husband” and “wife” are about to become archaic language in Washington state as officials prepare to remove the terms from marriage and divorce certificates.
Tim Church, a spokesman for the Wash. state Health Department, told Fox News they will likely be removing those words in favor of more gender neutral terms.
He said the changes are necessary in response to the same-sex marriage law that takes effect Dec. 6.
“We’ve been quickly moving ahead to change our marriage certificate to make sure it fits for everyone who is going to be using it,” he told Fox News.
The words “bride” and “groom” could be replaced with “Spouse A” and “Spouse B” or “Person A” and “Person B,” Church said.
The department has been taking public input but the state’s secretary of health will ultimately decide which terms are used.
“People are just happy we are aware that the form needs updating,” Church said. “One (person) expressed concern that she sees forms that she does not see herself in – and she’s forced to make a choice on a form that is not a perfect choice for her.”
“We want our form to work for everyone who is getting married,” he added.
Peter Sprigg, of the Family Research Council, said it’s no surprise that traditional marriage terminology is about to be censored in Washington state.
“It is one sort of symbolic indication of how radical a change the legalization of same-sex marriage is,” Sprigg told Fox News. “Symbolically, they are doing away with the whole concept of bride and groom, husband and wife – at least in the eyes of the law.”
Sprigg suggested the heterosexual couples could challenge the new terms by simply crossing out the new language and inserting the old.
“I wonder if the state would accept that,” he asked. “If not, it would suggest this movement is intent on being even more totalitarian.”