BOSTON An appeals court ruled Thursday that a law that denies a host of federal benefits to gay married couples is unconstitutional. The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston said the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman, discriminates against gay couples. The law was passed in 1996 at a time when it appeared Hawaii would legalize gay marriage. Since then, many states have instituted their own bans on gay marriage, while eight states have approved it, led by Massachusetts in 2004 Boston court: Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional - BostonHerald.com i guess the judges forgot to read the bible.