The Supreme Court has ruled that states cannot prevent gay people from marrying so now our gay brothers and sisters all over this great country have access to the civil right of marriage! I am proud to be an American today!
I want to address some of the crazy objections that various right-wing bigots have posed to this Supreme Court decision:
- Some justices and other dissenters have stated that the Supreme Court had no authority to so rule because they feel marriage is a state matter that does not fall under the Equal Protection Clause of the14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but marriage was clearly defined as a civil right under just that clause by the Supreme Court in 1967 when the Loving v. Virginia decision invalidated state laws prohibiting interracial marriage. This is the very same principle, people, and our gay brothers and sisters most assuredly do have the constitutional right to marry.
- Some people are using the scare tactic that clerics will face legal action if they refuse to marry same-sex couples in religions that do not believe in same-sex marriage. This is just a scare tactic and nothing more. Religious institutions bar people from receiving their sacraments for many reasons. Catholics can't marry in their Church if they have been divorced or if they want to marry a Protestant or if they won't go to the classes or pastoral counseling that their pastor requires or, often, if they are pregnant (although pregnancy discrimination is illegal). In my own faith, you are supposed to apply to a Clearness Committee and have them come to a consensus that marriage is the right thing for you. Churches are free to set their own practices and I have never met anyone who wanted to interfere with that except where church practices interfered with a minor's physical safety, as in religions that will not seek medical care for their children or who rape them. The views of a church, however, cannot be allowed to be an excuse for the State to treat its citizens with inequality.
- The jerks who want state benefits denied to same sex couples because of the beliefs of people working in benefit offices need to get different jobs because if you take a public position, you need to be able to discharge your duties without discriminating against any members of the public citizenry.
I am sure there are still many struggles ahead, and that many bigoted state and local jurisdictions will fight the implementation of this ruling just as bigoted state and local jurisdictions fought integration. The bigots will lose, though.