Marriage Equality: The Aftermath

June 27, 2013Category: PoliticsTags: , ,

Yesterday, SCOTUS handed out it’s decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act, and on Prop 8. They invalidated Prop 8 through technical reasons to avoid a country-wide decision, and fully invalidated the section of DOMA which kept the government from recognizing gay marriages from States which recognize them.

To put in another way, SCOTUS struck down DOMA, in the battle of the acronyms.

Humor aside, these decisions, along with the increasing speed at which States are coming into the marriage equality fold, leads me to the conclusion that full marriage equality is certain, within a matter of decades, if not years. And with this becoming a certainty, recent events are starting to cause me concern.

There was an incident in the past year where a baker refused to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple, and was sued. This, in my mind, crosses the line from right to wrong. So far in this entire debate, the question has always been, are we trying to be free, or force our beliefs on others. Live and let live is the proper solution when possible, and so for marriage, the proper answer is to let anyone get married. Conservatives are trying to force their beliefs (that gay marriage is wrong) onto others, by controlling them and forcing them not to get married. Marriage equality proponents are therefore in the moral right.

Yet in the case of this baker, it becomes our side which is in the wrong. We are forcing someone else to do an action, namely making a cake, against their will. A couple has no moral right to have a cake made for them, just as conservatives have no moral right to live in a world filled only by people who fit their definition of “good”. Because this example has already happened, I worry that in the future similar things will happen. Even more so, I worry that our side, filled with confidence from winning and bitterness from decades of struggle, will over react and become guilty of the same types of abuses of power that were used against them. Will it be considered okay to force a priest/pastor/minister/etc to marry someone? Or to force a Church to allow their building to be used for a marriage? I sincerely hope not, but I worry because I personally know several people who would consider those acceptable.

We are winning the war. Let us not lose our morality in the process.