Just want to add to the noise that is our celebration: The law in the United States now states that same-sex couples share the constitutional right to marry and that states cannot refuse to issue them marriage licenses.
This is incredible. And once the dominoes started falling, in retrospect it seems like it happened really fast.
I know that this was an out-of-reach impossible goal for centuries. I know some people died without getting to marry their partners. I know the associated laws pertaining to custody and inheritance and hospital visits have ruined families and relationships for as long as there's been marriage. It seems a lot faster for those of us who didn't have to feel every second. For them, it was not soon enough. We can never undo that. But now, with this ruling, the future is a different color for many, many people.
I don't want to be married, but I'm happy to know that if things changed and I met a another woman I wanted to marry, it would be allowed. I am so happy for all my friends who can now pursue this. I am excited for what this means for the future in marriage equality. I am looking forward to when the phrase "gay marriage" sounds weird to everyone because marriage is marriage and not everyone who married a partner of their same sex is "gay," nor is their marriage "gay." And as gross as this sounds, I'm glad we can start moving into the period of our national history where people who opposed marriage equality will be billed as the oppressors they were--the opposition that had to be overcome by the good guys, if you know what I mean. The people who are going to be the villains in movies about this in the future.
Unfortunately, now there's this . . . when we talk about racism, some people still say "what are black people complaining about? slavery is over, they have equality." When we talk about sexism, some people still say "what are women complaining about? they got the right to vote, they have equality." And now when we talk about queer issues, we're going to--and already have started to--hear "what are gay people complaining about? they got their marriage, they have equality."
There is still far more work to be done. We still have a need for a movement even if one of our biggest issues fell our way. We must focus on other kinds of equality and just plain changing the attitudes behind the institutional prejudices and oppressions some of us face. The switch doesn't flip just because a law took effect. It's more like a rising tide; the levels rise until people start to notice, and people who would have laughed before start to realize we're serious when that water is flowing in places they imagined would stay dry forever. You don't just declare something wet and wait for the tide to catch up. It's the tide that makes it that way.
Voices and opinions and refusal to accept the status quo are what made it that way.
I'm thrilled. I'm ecstatic. I'm cautiously optimistic. We just won a big game, y'all, though I don't even know if there is a way to win a whole tournament.
But let's keep playing.