2015 : Supreme Court Recognizes Same-Sex Marriage

June 26, 2020 all-day

On this day, the Supreme Court of the United States rules that same sex couples can marry legally.  The decision — Obergefell v. Hodges — is based in part on a Michigan court case, DeBoer v. Snyder.

The legal arguments are important, but the essence of the 5-4 decision recognizing marriage equality nationwide comes in the final paragraph of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority 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.”

That’s what this has always been about. Not procreation. Not religious beliefs. Not outdated stereotypes.

It has been about embracing the fundamental freedoms of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that drove our founding fathers to declare independence. The Supreme Court delivered on that promise Friday.