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Home » Turner Law Offices Blog » Big Wins for Same-sex Marriage in the US

Big Wins for Same-sex Marriage in the US

Supreme-Win-For-Gay-MarriageWhat a week for the Supreme Court of the United States! Decisions, decisions, decisions. Here’s the latest and most historical opinion from SCOTUS:  there is no longer an issue on gay marriage; from now on, it’s just marriage.  Illegal state constitutional bans prohibiting same-sex marriage have been struck down as unconstitutional.  All people are entitled to marry whomever they choose:  gay, lesbian, straight; it just doesn’t matter anymore – as of today, anyone can get married to whomever they love in whatever state they choose.

The ruling will go down in history as one of those landmark Supreme Court cases that high school students have to memorize (and learn to spell) for their U.S. History exams. Today’s Court decision is to gay rights exactly what Brown v. Board of Education was for the Civil Rights Movement. A big deal.  Prior to today’s ruling, only 36 states have allowed same-sex marriages to occur within their borders; the remaining 14 are now required to afford equal protection to all of its residents and allow same-sex marriage.

President Obama Addresses The Nation

President Obama, shortly after SCOTUS, announced its ruling, held a press conference in the White House rose garden.  “Our nation was founded on a bedrock principle: that we are all created equal.  The project of each generation is to bridge the meaning of those founding words with the realities of changing times.  A never ending quest to ensure that those words ring true for every single American.  Today, the Supreme Court recognized that the Constitution guarantees marriage equality.  In doing so, they have reaffirmed that all Americans are entitled to the equal protection of the law; all people should be treated equal, regardless of who they are or who they love.  This decision will end the patchwork system that we had, and end the uncertainty that hundreds of thousands of same-sex couples face for not knowing whether their marriage, legitimate in the eyes of one state, will remain if they decide to move or even visit another.  This ruling will strengthen all of our communities by offering to all loving same-sex couples the dignity of marriage across this great land.  This ruling is a victory for [the plaintiff and other plaintiffs], a victory for other gay and lesbian couples that have fought so long for their basic civil rights, for the children whose families will now be recognized as equal to any other.  It’s a victory for allies . . . and this ruling is a victory for America.  This decision affirms what millions of Americans believe in their hearts.  When all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free. . . Shifts of hearts and minds is possible. . .For all of our differences, we are one people; stronger together than we could ever be alone. . . We are big and vast and diverse, a nation of people with different backgrounds and beliefs, different experiences and stories, but bound by our shared ideal that no matter who you are or what you look like, how you started off, or how and who you love, America is a place where you can write your own destiny.  We are a people who believe that every single child is entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. . . today, we can say, in no uncertain terms, that we have made our Union a little more perfect. . . America should be very proud.”

Marriage Defined

Now that the Supreme Court has finally held state constitutional bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional, there is no longer “gay marriage”, it’s just marriage.  Today’s decision is an emotional one, not only for same-sex couples, but for all Americans; even conservatives who once opposed gay marriage became emotional over the Court’s opinion.

Conservative republican analyst S.E. Cup of CNN was tearful on-air and could barely get through her interview with Wolf Blitzer, repeatedly referring to the supporters of same-sex marriage as patriots.  ” These people are patriots; it’s time for party politics to shift. It’s hard to watch this and not get emotional. These people are not pariahs; they are patriots. . . The politics of this is one thing; [I[ challenge my party to look at the faces of these people and ask yourself, ‘do they deserve the same kind of dignity that the rest of us get to enjoy”. . . You can argue with the Supreme Court’s rationale, but this is America and these people are Americans; they are our future. . . These people are not asking for a lot; it’s time for republican party politics to shift on this.  . . I have ever understood why conservatives do not see that these people are begging to be part of a conservative institution of monogamy and commitment; it’s a good thing for traditional family values. . . They have fought so long for so little; just to be equal. . . Republicans have changed their minds because they meet real people who are gay; you realize that they are not asking for much. They are asking for what you take for granted.”

The final debate was all about how acceptance of same-sex marriage is going to impact the institution of marriage. Terms like “husband and wife” would obviously have to be amended to some degree, but Supreme Court justices had to decide whether the effect of doing so would be negative.

Opponents of gay marriage unsuccessfully argued “Yes.”

The (Defeated) Argument:

The opponents of same-sex marriage reasoning had to do with the idea that marriage is about procreation. If it’s not, why would people refrain from having kids outside of wedlock? Obviously “stable environments for children” are ideal. Parents who are committed to each other, the theory goes, are more likely to be committed to their kids.

But there’s no real reason to think that allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry will encourage uncommitted parenting. That’s a total “personal opinion” that becomes immediately irrelevant in the light of upholding Constitutional rights of equal protection.  Regardless of how U.S. citizens choose to personally respond to the inclusion of same-sex couples in the institution of marriage, the fact remains that those choices will be made based on beliefs the government has no right to perpetuate.  Whether the ruling inspires celebrations or whatever the opposite of a party is, today is officially important. And one thing’s for sure:

Marriage license offices are going to be crowded for awhile.

At Turner Law Offices, P.C., our lawyers have the knowledge, training, and experience to handle all marital issues!  Our family law attorneys have worked with same sex couples for years in navigating the complicated legal framework under prior law.  The compassion and commitment of our friendly attorneys will help you get to a better place, whatever your situation may be. Call today for your no obligation Free Initial Consultation or request online.

(615) 259-2660

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