Just in time for New York City Pride 2015, the Supreme Court handed down a ruling that will be remembered for years to come. Today, the justices of the United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of this case known as Obergefell vs. Hodges, 5-4, that states cannot ban same-sex marriage. Much of this debate comes after several couples were married in states that allowed same-sex marriage, but moved to states where it was banned (e.g. New York (allowed) –>Tennessee (banned)).
It all started back in 2003 with Massachusetts allowing marriage between same-sex couples, which was implemented in 2004. Since that time, 37 states have allowed gay marriage and 13 have opposed it.
The 13 states that oppose gay marriage are: Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas.
Assuming that you know geography, you can make out the other 37 states that do allow same sex marriage. It should be noted that out of the 37 states that allow it, not all state legislatures were accepting of gay marriage. A majority of them, 26 out of 37, were ruled by a court. However, the nation’s highest court today made it official.
Another number to focus on is the 5-4 ruling. Yes, majority rules in this court, but it was not unanimous. However, with those 4 justices who are known to be more conservative, they speak for millions of Americans who still do not support marriage within the LBGT community.
This may be a giant victory for many; however it will not stop the discrimination that may take place in states where the marriages were previously banned, or from people whose religious beliefs teach them otherwise.
In the 103-page document, which can be found on www.supremecourt.gov, the justices are quoted with their reasoning behind their decisions. It is a very interesting read, especially since you get an idea of why they took their stance on this matter and voted the way they did.
For example, Chief Justice John Roberts, who dissented, partially explained his reasoning, referring back to history and the definition of marriage. Well Mr. Chief Justice, history can change. And today, it did.