Time editor Rick Stengel explains his decision:
"Whatever the Supreme Court decides, it seems clear that the majority of Americans feel marriage is a civil right and that denying that right to people because of their sexual orientation is a violation of equal protection under the law…. We had a long debate in our offices about this week’s cover images of two same-sex couples. Some thought they were sensationalist and too in-your-face. Others felt the images were beautiful and symbolized the love that is at the heart of the idea of marriage. I agree with the latter, and I hope you do too."Here is some more information about the couples pictured above:
Award-winning photographer Peter Hapak shot the split-run cover portraits for TIME. Russell Hart and Eric LaBonte are the male couple featured on the cover; they are legal domestic partners living in LA and are engaged. Sarah Kate Ellis-Henderson and Kristen Ellis-Henderson are the female couple; they are legally married in New York state, and have two children.Time is changing and times are changing! And that's a good thing.