This should be cause for celebration. We will have finally won our rights. And yet, I am melancholy. I am grateful, but I am not satisfied. I have this nagging, gnawing question: what about our friends?
On Monday morning, the Supreme Court surprised many by declining to hear appeals from decisions in five states striking down bans on same-sex marriage. As advocates of same-sex marriage cheer the march of progress, it's important not to lose sight of the fact that marriage equality affects individuals.
Our laws define us, if even by force, and so we move forward, wearing the shoes of the disenfranchised.
More and more evangelical conservatives are rethinking their position on gay marriage because they've discovered that, no matter what their theological convictions may be about marriage and sexuality, these beliefs need not dictate legislation over our pluralistic nation.
At my parents' suggestion, I met with a pastor and told her I was gay. She introduced me to Exodus International, a ministry whose leaders claimed homosexuality was a sin. They believed with conversion therapy, God could change my orientation. I bought in.
While your action last year told me that my heart (and tax dollars) were not welcome in my home state, the Supreme Court declared that you do not get to decide that I'm not equal in my birthplace.
By letting this decision, and others like it, stand, the Supreme Court seems to be recognizing the amazingly swift turnaround in public attitudes on the issue of same-sex marriage and on gay and lesbian rights, in general.
Remain calm. I am here to help you. Here is what will change: some men will call their spouses husband and some women will call their spouses wife. That's pretty much it. Your marriage is safe!
What a difference a decade makes. Ten years ago, the so-called "culture war" issues -- especially abortion and same-sex marriage -- were a boon to conservatives in terms of fundraising and energizing their base to go to the polls.
In light of the Court's five-to-four decision a little over a year ago in Windsor v United States, in which the Court held the federal Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, it is virtually certain that the five justices in the majority in Windsor (Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan) would take the next obvious step and hold state laws prohibiting same-sex marriage unconstitutional as well. Indeed, that is why lower federal court judges have been almost unanimous since Windsor in reaching that result. With that understanding, it is obvious why none of the four dissenters in Windsor (John Roberts, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito) voted to hear this round of cases. But why did the justices who were in the majority in Windsor also vote not to hear these cases?
Media has been woefully silent on the countless large faith communities that affirm marriage between couples of same sex. Many for decades. Thus facts are a beautiful thing.
As a priest and pastor, I am grateful that bogus arguments distorting Christian values and deploying them as weapons of mass discrimination have been rejected by the highest court in the land.
The Republicans have a grand opportunity to woo a vital constituency, valued both because of their numbers as well as their potential as contributors. But the Grand Old Party is blowing it badly. Once again.
Today the Supreme Court announced it would not hear a marriage equality case in the near future, turning down several appeals of lower court rulings that voided bans on same-sex marriage. No doubt this is a disappointment to many who have been waiting for the Court to declare marriage equality a constitutionally protected right. Yet the decision is still a major victory for LGBT rights. Same-sex marriage is absolutely necessary for our country to fulfill its constitutional promises of equal protection and due process of law. Yet there were good reasons for the Court to hold off on deciding the marriage question this term.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is heading for the exit, but before he goes, he has some good news for gay and lesbian couples.