It’s Friday night, and I’m celebrating. I’m celebrating the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down DOMA especially after its ruling this same week to do away with Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act.
It is unbelievable to me that after so many examples of voter suppression tactics employed by the GOP in several states, in the last presidential election, Justices Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Kennedy voted to eliminate the “coverage formula” that determines if a state or local government falls under Section 5 and, therefore, needs to obtain approval before changing its voting laws. Well, at least it’s a good thing that the Court did not go as far as Justice Thomas would have liked. The supremely conservative and only African-American Justice in the Court would have struck down Section 5 altogether.
But, back to DOMA, it’s good to see that the Court got something right this week. For the purpose of federal law, a marriage is no longer defined as between a man and a woman but as between two people who love each other. I’m happy for my gay friends, for gay couples everywhere, for the children of those gay couples. President Obama said it best:
“[DOMA] treated loving, committed gay and lesbian couples as a separate and lesser class of people. The Supreme Court has righted that wrong, and our country is better off for it. We are a people who declared that we are all created equal — and the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.
This ruling is a victory for couples who have long fought for equal treatment under the law; for children whose parents’ marriages will now be recognized, rightly, as legitimate; for families that, at long last, will get the respect and protection they deserve; and for friends and supporters who have wanted nothing more than to see their loved ones treated fairly and have worked hard to persuade their nation to change for the better.” [Washington Times]
Every time we move towards inclusion, acceptance and tolerance, every time we fight against discrimination and bigotry, every time we move from hate to love, we become better human beings. It is ironic that many conservatives and most ultra-conservatives, who identify themselves as Christians, behave so radically different from Jesus Christ’s teachings.
But what I find really interesting is that in striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, in judging that a marriage is valid between any two people who love each other and decide to engage in it, the Supreme Court is, in fact, defending marriage. It was about time.