Supporters of marriage equality gathered in front of the Supreme Court last year

It’s been one year since the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges.


It’s June 26, 2015: All eyes are fixed on the front steps of the Supreme Court in Washington D.C. Suddenly, several people burst out of the doors, come bounding down the steps, and break into a sprint across the courtyard in front of the building. They are press interns, carrying with them copies of the Supreme Court’s pivotal decision in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges.

Just like that, the result was delivered – in a landmark 5-4 ruling, the court declared that same-sex couples throughout the United States have a fundamental right to marry. On Sunday, legal same-sex marriage celebrates its one-year anniversary!

History of Same-Sex Marriage

Just a quick note: this piece will focus on the impact of the Obergefell v. Hodges decision and the current climate regarding LGBT rights in America. However, we’ve also been doing extensive research on the history of same-sex marriage itself. Contrary to the beliefs of some, it’s a fascinating story that reaches back thousands of years. In fact, there was so much information that we decided to create a separate page in order to fit everything in. Click here to check it out!

Looking Back: One Year Later

A gay couple that just got marriedObviously, a lot of good came out of Obergefell v. Hodges. Suddenly, same-sex relationships were no longer relegated to second-class status under the law. After a long and arduous battle, gay couples across the United States were given a right which had been denied to them for so many years. A recent Gallup survey indicates that since the ruling, nearly 125,000 same-sex couples across the country have tied the knot!

While it was certainly a victory for marriage equality, Obergefell generated significant backlash from opponents of same-sex marriage. Having officially lost the legal battle, they found themselves backed into a corner. In many states, certain county clerks remained hostile to gay couples, illegally refusing to issue them marriage licenses. The most notorious of these detractors was Kim Davis, a county clerk from Kentucky who became the face of resistance to same-sex marriage. Davis was jailed for her actions, making her a hero in the eyes of some social conservatives, many of whom were influenced by their faith, who were unwilling to admit defeat.

The decision also spawned a new batch of anti-LGBT legislation. The ACLU reported that as of early May, almost 200 separate anti-LGBT bills had been introduced in 32 different states. They come in all different forms: some are related to transgender bathroom rights, some attempt to prohibit same-sex marriages in certain circumstances, and others let businesses deny services to gay people. While very little of this reactionary legislation is likely to stick, it indicates that there remain plenty of anti-LGBT sentiments across the country.

Ongoing Discrimination

In the adulation following the Supreme Court’s decision, some people impulsively declaredTwo women hold signs protesting for LGBT equality that the battle for equality had finally been won. However, full equality across the United States remains an unrealized goal. While things have certainly gotten better, LGBT individuals continue to face significant discrimination in their everyday lives. For example, it may come as a surprise to learn that only 21 U.S. states have passed laws which specifically prohibit housing discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Equally disturbing is the fact that many states still have zero legal protections for LGBT employees. So although gay people can now get married in all fifty states, depending on where they live, they can still be legally fired if their boss discovers their sexual orientation. Often this information is hard to keep secret – it’s a bitter irony that those same marriage benefits gay couples fought so hard for now have the potential to get them fired (when, for example, they have to disclose their spouse’s information in order to apply for health insurance through work). If that doesn’t strike a chord, consider this:

Florida is one of the many states that doesn’t have laws to protect LGBT employees – this means that survivors of the Pulse shooting who were interviewed or had their names published in the paper could lose their jobs because of it. Is that justice?

Moving Forward

Although federal judges across the country have consistently followed the Supreme Court’s lead in protecting LGBT rights, that hasn’t stopped certain states from continuing to pursue discriminatory legislation. This list includes: Mississippi, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, South Dakota, and Virginia.

Clearly, we still have a long way to go. Despite what the constitution says, LGBT individuals are not fully equal under the law. The amount of continued discrimination in areas such as housing and employment are symptomatic of a larger hurdle that must be crossed: acceptance. With this in mind, it’s clear that achieving full equality involves more than just changing laws, it requires changing minds. Being gay in America is still a radical act and can place a person at a significant disadvantage on multiple fronts. This is a longer battle, and one that won’t be won overnight. However, the progress made so far provides an encouraging sign that we are on the right track.

Stonewall Declaration

On a final note, today President Obama declared the area near New York City’s The Stonewall Inn, NYCStonewall Inn as the first national monument dedicated to the struggle for LGBT rights. On the night of June 28, 1969, in response to a series of raids and discriminatory violence, the LGBT crowd which frequented the Stonewall rioted. The riots quickly turned into protests, and after years of hiding their identities members of the LGBT community started openly marching in the streets. This event is widely recognized as the birth of gay Pride and the modern LGBT civil rights movement. In a video announcing the monument (which is technically a national park), President Obama shared his thoughts, saying “I believe our national parks should reflect the full story of our country, the richness and diversity and uniquely American spirit that has always defined us”. 

 

65 comments

  1. sont143 says:

    Love is Love. If even one person quotes Paul of Leviticus here, I will once again repeat: This is NOT a Christian church!

    1. Realist1776 says:

      No bible quotes here, but if God really intended the gays to be equal wouldn’t they be equal by now?

      1. sont143 says:

        Is that even a question? Was slavery okay because God allowed it to exist?

      2. Alan J. Meunier says:

        Maybe we should also slaughter our first born sons, refrain from eating shellfish, and stone adulterers as well….

      3. Shane Lowrey says:

        Gays were equal, and often celebrated for their gifts being rather rare in society.

        It wasn’t until misogyny and patriarchal ideation overtook society that they had problems.

        1. Realist1776 says:

          That’s not what the Bible says happened. For that matter, the Quran doesn’t either. Even most historians agree with me.

          1. David E Moore says:

            Which is truly a western European notion. However, the native American people believe that those with two spirits are of considerable importance, and are generally treated with the utmost respect.

      4. Parson Golden NH says:

        By that logic, does God perpetuate racists, bigots, genocide, murderers and rapists? Probably not, man has invented racism and bigotry, and finds ways to apply it as he sees fit.

  2. cary says:

    I agree. Love wins over hate every time.

  3. Realist1776 says:

    Can’t believe Obummer is wasting our hard-earned tax dollars on a monument to the gays…

    1. Alan J. Meunier says:

      …and how much was it? It was ZERO compared to what is wasted (by the GOP congress) within a half an hour…

      1. Realist1776 says:

        False. The GOP is founded on fiscal responsibility. Tax and Spend (even more) Democrats are the ones sending this country to financial ruin.

        1. farnick says:

          So, if the GOP is founded on fiscal responsibility, please tell us why they spend so much on useless investigations and repeated attempts to undermine legislation that has legitimately passed both houses of Congress?

    2. Parson Golden NH says:

      It discredits your point when you open by calling the President of the United States a childish, made-up foolish name.

  4. Restrepo says:

    I still think this is wrong. Should the Supreme Court really have the authority to make laws? If I remember my Politics classes right, they are supposed to ‘check’ the other branches, not push their own agenda.

    1. Alan J. Meunier says:

      The Supreme Court does NOT “create” laws but merely interpret the Constitution against laws on the books. In this case they ruled for human rights over hate and bigotry. There should not be “gay” marriage but “marriage” like we no longer have “blacks only” water fountains, just “water fountains”…..

      1. Realist1776 says:

        Poor comparison. Those racists thought black people had germs. We are smarter than that – of course gays don’t carry germs. But marriage is a traditional institution for raising families – not to be exploited by flamboyant homosexuals. I mean have you SEEN those parades??

        1. farnick says:

          I’ll say this in response to your comment: some people have too much interest in what is between the legs and not enough interest in what is between the ears.

        2. cary says:

          Marriage is NOT a traditional institution for raising families. The Native Americans organized wedding between two men, two women, and revered transgender people as two spirit people. Marriage predates the bible by thousands of years and was done by pagans, Greeks, Romans, etc. Why you want to think you can keep it all to yourself is beyond me. Hate is hate. Dress it up in a Sunday suit, it is still hate. If you take that whole marriage thing so bleeding seriously then those who marry more than once are apostate! It is unrealistic to follow a book that is a bunch of old science fiction. Jesus taught love and tolerance. Not hate and killing. He celebrated life. “Let ye who is without sin cast the first stone.” Are you that pious?

  5. Mark Glenn says:

    I’m very happy that the SCOTUS ruled on this. While marriage was once left for the States, the USG has essentially usurped this by attaching so many rights, benefits and responsibilities to the institution. I feel happy our LGBT family can participate fully and show its love.

  6. Southpaw says:

    The law of God is very clear. Homosexuality is a perversion and an intrinsic disorder and contrary to Man’s purpose. The law of Man can sanction it all it wants, but it will never be sanctioned in the eyes of God.

    1. king Bob says:

      My goodnes. Come up from the dark ages you cave dweller

      1. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

        GOD WILL NOT BE MOCKED.

    2. Parson Golden NH says:

      No, it’s not clear at all……

    3. Silver says:

      If we keep accepting man to man and woman to woman, then I weep for future, soon no more procreation.

  7. zardoz says:

    it is not natural homosexuality, they can not reproduce

    1. Parson Golden NH says:

      So there is a test for marriage? The ability to reproduce? 6.7 million women between the ages of 15 and 44 are infertile. Should we ban them from marriage because they cannot reproduce?

  8. Craig says:

    This is a real celebration. For all the negative news that focuses on how we (all of one spirit) polarize against each other, create us versus them, use religion to foster hate and inequality, I feel heartfelt happiness that we are moving towards creating the world that is our highest and best vision of the experience of manifested spirit. That we can recognize, love, and let go of philosophies, ideas and judgements that don’t work to manifest the love that we are. Beliefs are only useful until they no longer serve us. Hate and inequity towards those that are different does not serve us.

  9. John Owens says:

    Short answer to the blog’s question: No. Equal means just that. Different means something else. That’s how it is, was, and shall be. I’m not saying it is fair, because “fair” usually means you get what you want, and “not fair” means you don’t get what you want. Life is full of disappointments. Every group has rules and norms, and if they are not followed, there are measures to discourage breaking those rules and norms. Here we have one group trying to make a big change to another group. It cannot end well. If you want to be different, just be different and revel in your difference. If you are persecuted, rejoice in your persecution. You cannot change or dictate human nature. You can only try to be yourself and not cause harm to anyone else.

  10. king Bob says:

    Shame on anyone saying homosexuality is wrong etc. Celebrate the love. Who is it for you to say whats right and whats wrong? Leave god out of your sad attempts at justifying your narrowminded, blinkered views

    1. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

      iTS NOT OUR VIEWS, ITS WHAT GOD SAID, yOU PEOPLE ARE SO BLIND. i PRAY FOR YOUR SOULS, THAT GOD WOULD HAVE MERCY FOR YOU. WE ALL WILL GIVE AN ACCOUNT SOMEDAY FOR EVERYTHING WE HAVE SAID AND DONE. I THINK GOD, BY HIS GRACE THAT I AM SAVED. WAKE UP! READ THE BIBLE. HOMOSEXUALS WILL NEVER EVER IN A BILLION YEARS INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD. KEEP IN MIND THAT ETERNITY IS A LONG TIME.

      1. king Bob says:

        You keep believing in that complete rubbish. Sad unloving world that one you inhabit.

      2. Paster Pete says:

        Neither will racists and bigots….

  11. jack lAM says:

    it is gods wish that man marrys woman.he did not create womon to to marry woman.i believe gays should stay behind closed doors,and not introduced to our little ones.god help us.

  12. king Bob says:

    Come back when you can spell Jack. Perhaps when youve evolved some thumbs?

  13. Kristy says:

    I have no problem with any marriage. Marriage is a commitment, spiritual, love, and a unity. No one has the right to judge and one whom they marry, rather it be the same sex, transgender, and or man / woman. What makes them happy then so be it ; if any one person don’t like GLT Marriages then that is them. Don’t invite thoses people to the wedding. Be happy with the one you are wanting to be with, you love, soul mate, and or friend. We all love in different ways, live, be happy, sad, and or what ever all differently. Not one person is the same as the next. Let us all be happy, love , and marry who we want. Life is to short for all this BS. As to every one we all have opinion and see all things differently. This is my opinion, Love to all.

  14. king Bob says:

    Lovely Kristy

  15. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

    Marriage is between a man and a woman. It is how God intended man to reproduce. God created Eve as a help mate for Adam. The Bible clearly states that all homosexuals will have there part in the lake of fire. Now whether or not you believe this to be true is the question. Answer me this, if God intended marriage to be for the same sex, then why did HE CREATE 2 different genders?
    As on ordained minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ I will never ever condone or marry same sex partners. It is an abomination and it is wrong.

    Rev. Jonathan Mead

    1. Rev. James Goebel, MA says:

      Fine! Send them all my way. I’ll marry all of them. God is love, and he made gays as surely as he made you..although I’m not personally sold on that.

      1. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

        How are you even ordained? No minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ would even think of overseeing a GAY Marriage

        1. king Bob says:

          Jesus Christ was a sodomite

    2. king Bob says:

      Its how god intended man to reproduce. No that was evolution. God made jack shhhhh

    3. cary says:

      Actually, Your God did not create a woman. He took one of Adams ribs, that is a male part by the way, formed it and then transitioned it to female. Sounds like a transgender person to me eh? You spout so much acid and hate for thing you have absolutely NO understanding of. If I may be so bold as to ask, when did you decide to be straight? You, as a lowly guilt riddled, flawed little human have no right to judge others. How did you ever get so stupidly righteous that you think you know the mind of your god? The bible was written then rewritten, several hundred times over by man. Not devinely inspired, self important politicians are the authors of that work. It is what is in a noble being’s spirit and soul that are devine not some ghastly prose.

  16. Parson Golden NH says:

    No, the Bible does not clearly state that “all homosexuals will have them in the lake of fire”. Nor does it say that same sex partners is an abomination, except where mistranslation, misconception and misinformation is perpetuated by men.

    I imagine that you like to eat pork, work in the garden perhaps on Sundays, eat shellfish, finish up that Saturday meatloaf on Monday, read your horoscope, then you have as much right to be put to death as any same sex couple. If you wife slips on a pair of pants or wears nylons with a cotton dress she can be put to death with you. These are all abominations according to the King James version of the Bible. If these things sound absurd, that is because they are. They are as absurd as saying that same-sex couples are an abomination.

    But if you choose to ignore these things and continue to preach that same sex marriage is an abomination then you are picking chapter and verse out of the Bible that you choose to use to discriminate against other people. And I’m pretty sure that God would not approve.

    1. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

      If you think education is expensive try ignorance. Do you even have a Bible. Better yet have you read it? With answers like this, obviously not. Don’t give comments unless you can back it up. Show me in the Bible where gay marriage is OK. You can’t, because it isn’t. Does Sodom and Gomorrah ring a bell? GOD DESTROYED THAT CITY WITH FIRE BECAUSE OF THE SEXUAL IMMORALITY!

      1. Parson Golden NH says:

        I am educated, and I’m pretty sure I’m not the one here who is ignorant. Yes I do have a Bible, yes I have read it, and continue to. So rather than have an open discussion regarding my comments, you choose instead to degenerate me and attack me. As is often the case you have chosen to not address what I actually wrote and choose instead to continue with your own diatribe. I did not say that the Bible says that gay marriage is OK. I said that men intentionally misinterpret those verses to mean what they want them to mean. By doing so and ignoring the other “abominations” in the Bible, then they are picking and choosing Bible verses to perpetuate discrimination and racism. Can you tell me Sir why you pick and choose which “abominations” should be applicable?

      2. king Bob says:

        Wow you REALLY believe that book dont you. Amazing (shakes head in pity)

      3. king Bob says:

        Show me in the bible where it says “this actually happened and we have proof. Plus god really did write this book and its certainly not a collection of hearsay and chinese whispered folklore passed down from thousands of years ago” you are deluded if you believe anything that work of fiction tells you.

  17. Mike Carta says:

    What happened in Orlando , was a crime against nature.

  18. jerald coopersmith says:

    One of my favorite activities in life was going to a concert. Has never really mattered what music was playing. It seems to have the effect of bringing people of different types together. The circus was back in town! Folks seemed to be free and able to be themselves. No fights, no disagreements, no inhibitions, just music. I can recall on many occasions looking at these crowds and thinking – this is the way it was meant to be. This is the voice of god! Dont know about the rest of you- but I have a hard enough time deciding what to wear in the morning, helping my kids out to school and finding my way to work. I cant nor would I want to dictate to others about how they should be….who cares? I want the circus to continue- I need to hear all different types of music, and see colors and feel things that only come from many different sources of input. Their thoughts, feelings, smiles, dancing, singing only add to my reality. In those precious few hours of concert we are one – as it was always meant to be.

  19. Rev. Jonathan Mead says:

    Sodomite, Definition, A person guilty of unnatural sexual relations as between the same sex.
    .
    Deuteronomy 23:17-18 King James Version of the Holy Bible

    “There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a SODOMITE of the sons of Israel. Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore or the price of a dog, into the HOUSE of the LORD thy GOD for any vow: for even both of these are ABOMINATION unto the LORD thy GOD.

    Hebrews 14:4 King James Version of the Holy Bible

    “Marriage is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled, but whore-mongers and adulterers God will judge.”

    Sodomy is clearly forbidden. Read Exodus 22:19. Lev 18:22; 20:13, Dt. 23:17, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; 1 Timothy 1:10, Isaiah 1:9, 3:9 Judges 19:22; 20:13 and Romans 1:18-32

    Gods word is clear. Homosexuals, sodomites, whores, etc will have NO part in the Kingdom of GOD.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-10

    “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of GOD? BE NOT DECEIVED: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind (homosexuals), Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of GOD.”

    I think GOD is clear in HIS WORD where HE stands on Homosexuality and Sodomy.

    Rev. Jonathan Mead

    1. Parson Golden NH says:

      Rev. Johnathan Mead wrote: Sodomite, Definition, A person guilty of unnatural sexual relations as between the same sex.

      This is adefinition created by man, not God.

      Regarding Deuteronomy 23:17-18

      Although your creative use of capitol letters is commendable, the Bible never explicitly identifies homosexuality as the reason used to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. If you are open minded at all it’s difficult to conclude that the passages are a condemnation of consensual, monogamous, same-sex relationships. The original sin of Sodom could have been a refusal to be accommodating to travelers. Or it could have been the sin of rape. The Book of Ezekiel explains that Sodom and “her daughters had pride, overabundance of bread, abundance, and leisure, but they did not extend their hand to the poor. They were raised up and committed abominations before me”. Even in the New Testament, Sodom is condemned in terms of its connection with “uncleanness” and “adultery.” The very fact that all were destroyed would indicate that homosexuality could not have been the problem, because all sodomites could not possibly have been homosexual.

      There are many passages in the Bible that are difficult to interpret largely because they are contradicted in other passages of the Bible. Translations over time have been injected with words that gave meanings to popular philosophies of that time. Translations in the King James version are no different. Words that in ancient Hebrew text seemed to have one meaning were written as to have different meanings as the Bible was translated. This not necessarily done intentionally, but frequently due to an inability to accurately pass down knowledge over the generations, causing the transcribers to miss-interpret the meanings of ancient texts. The King James version was translated in 1611, by mortal men, not exactly during a period of enlightenment.

      I say again to make selected use of certain “abominations” as a means to discriminate, while ignoring all of the other “abominations” that you choose to, is just plain wrong.

    2. David says:

      I dare you to show me anywhere in the New Testament where Christ himself condemned homosexuality. It was only other men repeating the Old.

  20. Linda Fatty says:

    I just performed my first same sex ceremony it was beautiful.

    1. king Bob says:

      Fantastic Linda!

    2. Parson Golden NH says:

      Congratulations on the ceremony, and for standing up for what you believe in and doing the right thing!

  21. Jim says:

    Okay, let’s take a trip in the “way-back” machine to a time when marriage was nothing more than a business deal between two families. Women were considered to be more property than anything else. A wealthy (and often much older) man marries a girl in her early to mid teens, and the wealthy man pays the family a tidy sum. Or a family with a daughter offers a dowry to the man that marries her. Or sometimes it was a marriage between two kingdoms, like the old king of Creepytown marrying the young princess of Virginville, thus combining the two kingdoms into the bigger, stronger Perverseland.

    Like most things in life, they change over time. While we think marriage is about love, that idea is actually not that old, perhaps a few hundred years. Today there are still parts of the world where marriage is more business, less pleasure. And looking at the divorce rate, especially in most modern countries, it doesn’t seem designed to last forever. So perhaps we should look at gay marriage as just another step in the evolution of marriage. And now that we have gay marriage, we will have gay divorce. So the only winners in this are divorce attorneys. (I joke, but there is a lot of truth in that.)

    So, to all the folks against gay marriage, I say, “SHUT UP!” It’s the law of the land now. Gay married people aren’t bothering you. Mind your own business and leave the gay married people alone.

    To all the folks in favor of gay marriage, I say “SHUT UP!” You won. Enjoy the victory and go about your lives. No need to keep protesting and bothering people. Mind your own business and leave the straight bigots alone.

    You see? Same advice works equally for everyone. Simple, efficient, and respectful of everyone’s rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

    1. king Bob says:

      Who are you to tell anyone to shut up?

      1. Jim says:

        I’m just a that’s tired of hearing people complain about what other people do when it doesn’t involve them. Oh, and it’s my right. Just like it’s your right not to listen to me.

        1. king Bob says:

          But you are doing just that though so you should expect to be called on it

          1. Jim says:

            I’m not sure what you mean by “doing just that.” I am favoring no one nor one side of the argument or the other. I’m just saying, perhaps in a not-so-nice way, can’t we all just get along? Do we have to fight tooth and nail over stuff like this all the time? It really has no effect on straight people for gay marriage to exist, and it makes gay people happy that they can now be married. So what’s the problem? Let’s move on to more important stuff.

  22. king Bob says:

    So youre happy for bigots to keep spouting their hate messages then because its “their right”. Ok i see

    1. Jim says:

      I’m not happy about it Bob, but all the education and preaching in the world will not change some people’s minds and hearts. I think bigotry is the ultimate form of ignorance, and sometimes folks just want to be ignorant. And yes, it’s their right to be ignorant, as long as their ignorance does not manifest itself into an interference of the rights of others. I know, it’s not perfect, but it is the best it can be.

      Also, Bob, the way you put “their right” in quotes, as if you are mocking the idea, to that I take some offense if that was the intent. A long time ago the first amendment was explained to me not as my right to say what I want, but rather the right of someone to say what I don’t want to hear. I respect other rights to believe and say what they want, but by no means do I have to like the content.

  23. Rev Jonathan Mead says:

    Homosexuality is a sin. No sin will ever be allowed in Heaven. It is an abomination against the sanctity of marriage as God intended it to be, between a man and woman.

    1. king Bob says:

      My word i bet your knuckles are scraped to bits on the floor huh. I bet youre voting for Trump arent you

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