The Day of Decision has finally arrived for anxious court watchers of the Proposition 8 federal trial, with U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker delivering his ruling this afternoon.

Walker will decide whether or not Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot measure that took away the existing right of gays and lesbians to legally marry in California, is constitutional.

According to the American Foundation for Equal Rights, which organized the federal lawsuit that seeks to overturn Prop. 8, the judge's ruling will be e-filed today between 1 and 3 p.m. and can be found at the court's web site.

In addition, the American Foundation for Equal Rights has organized a rally in West Hollywood that's tentatively scheduled for 6 p.m., and will live stream its press conference in San Francisco within minutes after the ruling is handed down.

The rally will take place at West Hollywood Park at 647 N. San Vicente Boulevard, just south of Santa Monica Boulevard.

Since national and local news outlets will flock to West Hollywood for reactions to the decision, the gay community and its straight allies from all parts of Southern California are urged to show up in force no matter what the outcome may be.

In November, 2008, CNN televised live images of tens of thousands of anti-Prop. 8 protesters — straight and gay — marching in the streets of Los Angeles, which spurred more demonstrations across the country.

Gay journalist Rex Wockner points out that Day of Decision rallies are planned in such cities as New York City, Denver, and Boston, as well as San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento, and Long Beach.

Gay rights activists believe large, highly visible crowds at these events are important.

Legal observers say Walker's ruling will probably not be the final word on the legality of gay marriage in California, and anti-gay marriage forces will be railing against a decision that overturns Prop. 8 or hailing a ruling that favors them.

Either way, the decision will very likely be appealed and end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.

L.A. Weekly will cover the Prop. 8 decision throughout the day.

Contact Patrick Range McDonald at

LA Weekly