... One Giant Leap for Equality

  • Category: Opinion
  • Published: Saturday, 29 June 2013 14:05
  • Written by Vickye Ashton

supreme-court-gay-marriageWednesday, the United States Supreme Court said that the proponents of Proposition 8 that appealed Judge Walker's decision did not have standing. In other words, they told the Prop 8 proponents: this doesn't affect you. You have no personal stake in the defense of this law. To paraphrase: general "ooginess" at the thought of gay marriage does not count.

The Court also struck down section three of the ironically named Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional. No longer will marriages between same sex spouses be unrecognized by the federal government.

I suppose it is the pessimist in me that had to first mourn the fact that the Prop 8 ruling was not farther reaching. I will admit that I had hoped they would go all 14th Amendment on them and make this ruling apply to all the states.

I had to get over the fact that they did not overturn DOMA completely, but only one part of it, the section regarding federal recognition of gay marriage. Arizona is still not required to recognize your California (or any other state) marriage. No state has to recognize it. But, that was not the question before the court, so they really couldn't.

I wanted to scream, "This isn't enough!" I wanted to shake those robed wanna-be gods (who were already on my list after yesterday's Voting Rights Act ruling) and ask them why they couldn't have snuck a little bit more into the decision.

And then I step back and realize, we ARE a step closer-not farther-from full equality. I hate that it is only a step, but it IS a huge step. More than a step, it is a giant domino, ready to crash down on the next one, and the next.

Because, I am sure you all had the same experience I had if you were on Facebook just after 7 am this morning. It exploded in celebration. These times...they ARE a changing. 53% of people now support gay marriage. Compare that with the 52% that voted for Prop 8 just four and a half years ago. People just don't agree with equality and backslide into bigotry; they more FORWARD. WE will not lose ground; we will only gain. That is the benefit to using love and justice as your argument.

Prop 8's proponents are floundering, and they know it. Their arguments have become desperate and shaky. And you know what? They're not so popular anymore. No one of any intelligence really believes that gay marriage hurts families or children. To publicly promote that idea that being gay is wrong is becoming less and less acceptable, while being gay is becoming more and more just another normal way to be.

I personally love the idea of bigotry being forced into a closet, while love stands in the sunshine.

Because, to my mind, there was not other right way for the Supreme Court to decide, except for the side of equality. Anything else would have been a lie. Anything else would have been a mockery of our judicial system.

Anything else would have been un-American.

This is an historic day, to put up there with Brown v Board of Education, Loving v Virginia, Lawrence v Texas, and Griswold v Connecticut. All decisions that signaled positive turning points in our county. All historic stepping stones to bigger and better things. Including this one.

The United States v Windsor. Hollingsworth v Perry. We were here. We all watched as we moved up one more giant step, closer than ever to that goal of complete equality. We were witnesses to history this week.

So, tonight, we celebrate. Tomorrow...let's plan our next step.