It may have taken us 100 years to get it right with respect to race-restrictions on the freedom to marry, but it doesn't mean those laws weren't unconstitutional in 1868. The same is true, nearly 150 years after the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment, for laws that deny gay and lesbian couples the freedom to marry.
A Roberts ruling in favor of overturning the Defense of Marriage Act would be a victory for federalism, a triumph for the gay equal rights movement, and a historic moment for the Court that could well mark the moment that conservative opposition to same-sex marriage crumbled to dust.
Individual gay people and those they come to love are not social experiments, they are people. What is right constitutionally today will be right in a year or a decade or a lifetime.
I just walked out of oral arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court. It was a whirlwind hearing, and all three lawyers faced tough questions from the justices. Here's my initial take on the justices' questions and what they might mean.
If the Court rules to legalize gay marriage in all 50 states, we won't see the beginning of some nasty national debate. We'll see the end of one.
I'm hoping that the Supreme Court makes the right decision. However, I have to honestly admit that if the Supreme Court does make that decision, I'm a little nervous, maybe even scared, about what that means for my relationship with Vivian.
"If the Supreme Court strikes down Prop 8 and rules DOMA unconstitutional, I'll be overjoyed," said gay rights activist John Smith. "I mean at that point, the gay rights movement will be pretty much over." Prominent activists throughout the gay and lesbian community seem to be in agreement.
The lesson we all can take from the vision of those who foresaw this week is that often in quests for social justice, what seems impossible at first becomes inevitable later. And it's those who are willing to bear the brunt of being told that their ideas are impossible that move us forward.
A confession: I haven't always supported putting same-sex marriage at the forefront of the LGBT-rights movement. Recently, though, I've come to realize that the push for marriage equality is probably a good thing for the fight for other LGBT rights too.
Today, nearly five years after Prop 8, we are almost able to raise our fists in victory, but the effort to gain equality is not over. In fact, marriage equality means little until every lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender person can live openly, safely and equally in the communities they call home.
Today, March 26, and tomorrow, March 27, the Supreme Court will address the question of whether all Americans have the freedom to marry the person they love. The children being raised by LGBT parents are in an excellent position to answer that question, and they are speaking out.
Our opponents' hatred for my marriage will never be stronger than my love for my husband Michael. Their disgust and disdain for our families can never surpass the depth of our commitment to our spouses and children.
Despite having strong political and religious feelings about the issue, how are opponents "harmed" by same-sex couples getting married -- and having their relationship recognized by the law?
I think that gay marriage is going to win, in the end -- even if the Supreme Court ducks the issue this year. As civil rights battles go, the country has moved extraordinarily fast to where we find ourselves now: the point of no return.
How would the rights, happiness, love, unions and families of others diminish the blessings and rights enjoyed by those who currently have such rights? Does the suffering and agony of those who are deemed unequal enhance the lives of others?
Regardless of what is said in the oral arguments, a reading of the merits briefs makes it clear that the Court will have to rule in favor of gay marriage, and will improve the lives of 130,000 legally-married couples in same-sex marriages.