Antonin Scalia is furious, of course, attacking everyone and everything, including Justice Kennedy’s writing style, hippies, California and fortune cookies. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is puffing out his scrawny white male chest, wailing for a Constitutional amendment. Other nutballs and extremists are in a panic, too: Mike “Sniffing Glue” Huckabee is, you might say, freaking out. A deeply disturbed guy from the American Family Association is equating the decision to Pearl Harbor and 9/11. A very unfortunate pastor in Texas will shortly be setting himself on fire, because that’s what he promised to do and hey, God is watching, right?
Nevertheless, they finally did it. SCOTUS, very narrowly, very reluctantly, against all their famously regressive instincts and against the last, cruel vestiges of virulent homophobia in the land, let love in. Gay marriage is now the law of the land. Now and forever.
The most surprising thing, really, is that the decision wasn’t more unanimous, that, after 36 states have already legally validated same-sex marriage, after tens of thousands of gay couples have already been enjoying the fruits (and surely, the pits) of state-sanctioned marriage, after the tone and timber of the country, the culture, the younger generations, the outright moral and spiritual obviousness have all shifted dramatically in favor of “the last civil right,” that the issue still wasn’t foregone, that there was still a real and present threat, in the form of the still very hotly regressive wing of the Supreme Court.
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Of course, that’s not how this Roberts court works, and it wouldn’t be the harshly conservative, often downright nasty SCOTUS we know and are forced to endure today if Scalia and his crew didn’t at least make a few ugly, historic wails of dissent over a harmless, open-hearted variation of love they, like millions of older, calcified conservatives, refuse to understand.
Nevertheless, it’s official: the last remaining serious challenge to same-sex marriage in America has been shot down by a narrow (but expected) 5-4 vote, with Thomas, Roberts, Alito and, of course, the ever gay-hating Scalia all writing lengthy dissents, the contents of which will surely be, at least in Scalia’s catchy, meaner-than-thou timbre, nicely quotable for years to come. The decision takes effect immediately.
Meanwhile, love prevails. The last civil right has been vindicated. America, once again and just for a glorious, fleeting moment, lurches just a little more forward. Praise Jesus and pass the rainbow glitter.