Last Friday I was in the waiting room of a doctor's office and frantically hitting "refresh" on the SCOTUS website on my phone. Just before I was called back, I saw the ruling on Obergefell v. Hodges and felt like I let out a breath that I had been holding. I can't even imagine the feelings my gay and lesbian friends were experiencing.
I've written before about my feelings on same-sex marriage and I've given a lot of thought to whether or not I'd address it again now, but (obviously) I decided to go ahead and do it.
I'm no political scientist or constitutional expert, but here's what I believe. It sucks that this had to get to the Supreme Court. But it sucks even more when states' rights are given more weight than human rights. When any one group of law-abiding citizens, whether blacks, women, gays, Jews, Muslims, and on and on, are treated as second-class, we should all be outraged. And if the court has to step in to prevent that, well that's why we have a Supreme Court.
As for those who now fear that their religious freedoms are being trampled, I certainly hope that they're interviewing heterosexual couples and making sure that they are not engaging in any activities that also might go against one's religious convictions. Stop picking and choosing which parts of the Bible to follow.
Actually, I take that back. It's hypocritical of me. Because the parts of the Bible that I choose to follow are:
"Love your neighbor as yourself" ~ Mark 12:31
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" ~ Luke 6:31
Part of my point in all of this is that it just makes me sad that as a country we're spending time, energy and money on fighting with each other instead of fixing things like education, Social Security, poverty, not to mention fighting groups like ISIS. The more we argue with each other, the more vulnerable we are to outside threats.
Which brings me to the issue of racism. The horrific events in Charleston two weeks ago sparked the conversation about the Confederate flag. Look, if retailers want to sell Confederate paraphernalia, have at it. But it's appalling to me that state flags and license plates still have that symbol. And I'm disgusted that Rev. Pinckney's casket had to pass by that flag at the state capitol.
Now come reports that up to seven black churches have burned since the Charleston massacre. I've heard some say that it's not really seven, and not all of them are arson. But seriously, isn't just one too many?
Just taking down the Confederate flag will not eradicate racism. But I think that flag is not just a symbol of racism; it's also a reminder of the divide and Civil War that our country went through 150 years ago. And while it's an important part of our history, I don't think that as a country we need that reminder on state symbols. Again, it's just more arguing with each other.
“Can we all get along?” ~ Rodney King