Melissa Etheridge Celebrates Gay Marriage Rulings by Announcing Engagement

Wendy Geller
Stop The Presses! (NEW)

While supporters of gay rights heralded the Supreme Court's decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act and California's Proposition 8 Wednesday, Melissa Etheridge took the celebration one step further. The singer used the historic occasion to announce her own upcoming wedding!

"I look forward to exercising my American civil liberties," she tweeted shortly after the rulings were announced, "and getting fully, completely and legally married this year to my true love of over three years, Linda Wallem."

"Once again our constitution stands strong," she said in a statement. "All men, and women, and everything in between are created equal."

She also confirmed the news to CNN in a phone interview, referring to Wallem as her "now fiancee" and enthusing "It's a wonderful day."

The Court's decisions on Wednesday invalidated restriction on federal marriage benefits to same-sex couples, as well as paved the way for legal same-sex marriage in California.

Etheridge, 52, has been a high-profile activist for the gay and lesbian community since she came out in 1993. In 2008, she famously refused to pay California taxes as a protest against the passage of Proposition 8, which barred same-sex marriage in the state.

Etheridge has not been legally married; however, she did take vows with former partner Tammy Lynn Michaels in 2003 as part of a commitment ceremony. The two separated in 2010, the same year Etheridge began dating TV producer Wallem, who is the creator of Showtime's "Nurse Jackie."

"Let's hear it for the general progress of the human mind," the singer noted on her Twitter account. "With a beautiful sweep of sweet justice's blind hand we move forward."