In the nearly three years that I've been blogging, I have written several times on the topic of same sex marriage. In fact, one of my very first posts was called The Solution to the Gay Marriage Debate (Seriously), and my position has been consistent since, so I won't reiterate it here at length. I'll simply say that preventing consenting adults from marrying the person they love because others have religious issues with it, is flat out wrong.
Although the ruling by the California Supreme Court earlier this week upholding Proposition 8, which amended the state constitution to prohibit same sex marriage, was therefore profoundly disappointing, it was also not unexpected. Taking the easy way out, the Court held that Proposition 8 should stand, and while new marriages among homosexuals would not be legal, existing ones would still be recognized.
While I am not a lawyer, this ruling appears to me to be deeply flawed, since it creates a protected class of citizens in gays who have already married. The equivalent would be to permit citizens who purchased slaves before slavery was outlawed to keep them, but to prevent prospective slave owners from buying human chattel after an arbitrary date.
As discouraging as this ruling is, however, it is merely a setback. Proponents of equal marriage rights are preparing to fight on, and will place gay marriage measures on the California ballot as long as it takes to erase the enshrinement of bigotry, fear and discrimination that is Proposition 8. Opponents of same sex matrimony are on the wrong side of history, and one day the attitude of the woman in the photo on the right, above, will be as reviled as the hatred expressed by the people who fought the integration of public schools in Arkansas.
In the meantime, the Courage Campaign has an excellent new ad out on the topic that poignantly drives home how unjust discrimination against gays and lesbians really is.