SCOTUS rules in favor of gay marriage in Obergefell v Hodges.
While you were livin’ the high-life and making plans, something continued to move around you. What, life? No, American politics! This is ‘The Rundown.’ What is ‘The Rundown’ you ask? Other than a terrific action-comedy starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Stifler from ‘American Pie’, it’s our unique breakdown of major news stories that are currently hitting the political scene. In this edition we talk about the Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage in their ruling on Obergefell v Hodges.
Justice Anthony Kennedy’s Closing Thoughts in SCOTUS’ Obergefell v Hodges Opinion
No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.
The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.
It is so ordered.
How It Broke Down
Majority: Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Elena Kagan, Anthony Kennedy, and Stephen Breyer
Dissent: Justices John Roberts, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito
Dissent from an Activist-Liberal Judge…
If you are among the many Americans—of whatever sexual orientation—who favor expanding same-sex marriage, by all means celebrate today’s decision. Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.
I respectfully dissent.
– Chief Justice John Roberts
They Live in a Vaccum, Sometimes
There are two schools of thought when it comes to the Supreme Court Justices.
The Supreme Court is a paragon of decision making. Much like super heroes, they dawn the black robe and use the Constitution as their only guide, navigating through the murky waters of doubt into the sweet, sweet embrace of Lady Justice. They are the last line of defense for the American legal system. They don’t allow cameras in the courtroom because they are vain, neigh! But because they want to live in the hyperbolic chamber of American justice, that remains unsullied by the political world around it! They have no need for your bicameral system, the only instrument they need for guidance is the Constitution!
They’re like any other branch of government. They go to parties, give talks, read Politico, and do a host of other things. The idea of them living in a vacuum and not letting ANYTHING ELSE BUT THE CONSTITUTION sway their rulings is just naïve. Come on! You’re telling me that the most well-read individuals in America don’t pick up a newspaper every now and then? Or that they can’t see people’s perceptions of gay marriage changing over time? That’s not to say they don’t use the Constitution, but it’s more like a “hammer searching for nails” thing. They have their ideas, then use the constitution to justify them. They’re political shmucks just like everyone else in DC!
It’s important to keep in mind your idea of how SCOTUS rules always depends on whether you agree with a SCOTUS verdict. If I were to take a guess, many LGBT advocates view SCOTUS as Idea 1, while social conservatives view SCOTUS as Idea 2 today. But always remember, your views of SCOTUS are never in a vacuum, they’re just a verdict away from changing.
Thanks Obama Reagan!
— On Point – NPR (@OnPointRadio) January 23, 2015
I Think We Need to Find a Hippie?
Justice Scalia said in his dissent, “One would think Freedom of Intimacy is abridged rather than expanded by marriage. Ask the nearest hippie. Expression, sure enough, is a freedom, but anyone in a long-lasting marriage will attest that that happy state constricts, rather than expands, what one can prudently say.”
So first, was this Justice Scalia’s way of asking his wife for an open marriage? If so, power move Scalia!
Also, this still stands from yesterday.
Never change Scalia, never change.
“Does That Mean We Major?”
It was the subject line of an email that I got from a gay friend moments after the Obergefell v Hodges ruling was announced. In the email they asked to explain the decision and what it meant for them.
Then that got me thinking, “what does it mean to them?”
There are still so many battles left to be fought. LGBT individuals still lack protections against discrimination at the work place and businesses can still refuse gay couples service. Not to mention many LGBT groups, that have pushed for gay marriage in the last decade, say they won their battle, so what happens when they close up shop?! Will LGBT agenda still be as prevalent within the American conscious without a single rallying cry such as gay marriage to congregate around?
But then you stop and think; the LGBT community just did this to legal barriers that were gay marriage in the US.
If you think back just seven years before, Prop 8 won in California even with a good number of Democrats voting in that year’s election. The public’s opinion on LGBT rights are also changing for the better. This Supreme Court ruling proves times have changed for LGBT individuals in America.
So even though there’s still so much left to be done, for today…
Yeah, you major.
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