Love Wins And It's A Damn Good Place To Start

My social media feed exploded this morning with the news that the Supreme Court of the United States legalized gay marriage in all 50 states, courtesy of the landmark case Obergefell vs. Hodges

Can we just let that sink in for a minute?

Gay marriage is legal in all 50 states. 

I've been in tears since I read the news. I can't stop "liking" every damn article or meme or post about it. And I'm still in shock that, for once, we got it right. We came together and fought like hell for equality, and eventually we made a difference. 

I joined my first gay-rights group as a high school student in the early '90s. I remember when wearing a t-shirt that read "Hate Is Not A Family Value," earned me stares and head shakes of disgust. Just allying myself was considered controversial, much less actually being gay. We argued over whether homosexuality was a choice, and what the Bible said. It seemed like progress would never happen.

But a few years ago, I voted for the legalization of gay marriage in my home state of Washington. We were one of the first states to vote in marriage equality. As I listened to my son come out that year, I thought that maybe we had a chance at progress after all. 

And today we can finally say that our laws reflect our hearts, and that we have taken a monumental step toward equality. As Macklemore sang in Same Love, "Laws don't change us, we have to change us, but it's a damn good place to start." 

This ruling isn't the end of the fight for equality by a long shot. Civil rights aren't won in a day. Crimes against gays continue — even in my progressive city of Seattle and traditionally gay neighborhood of Capital Hill. All over the country jackasses continuously refuse to make pizzas or bake cakes for gay weddings because of their prejudice. Discrimination will not end simply because we have legalized gay marriage. 

This isn't the end of the journey, and I think we know that. But in this moment of victory and joy, and maybe even disbelief, changing the law is a damn good place to start. 

These kids of mine will grow up in a country that recognizes their right to marry the person they love. They will grow up with a recognition that seemed impossible even 20 years ago, and their experiences will shape the next generation, who will never even know a time where it wasn't legal to marry your lover, regardless of their sex. Someday, the time before the legalization of gay marriage will seem as incomprehensible to them as segregation seems to me. 

And Pride tomorrow? It's going to be one hell of a party. 

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