In a historic decision Friday June 26th 2015 the Supreme Court of the United States has ruled to invalidate all bans on Gay marriage across the entire country. Thirty-six of the 50 states already allow for Gay marriage, but for 14 states in the South and Midwest this means that their laws against gay marriage have been overturned by the Justices’ 5-4 decision to uphold the 14th amendment in regards to the issue of marriage equality.
The majority opinion was written by Justice Anthony Kennedy, who did so in the previous three cases, leading back to 1996. This judgment is the outcome of a two decade long legal battle.
“No union is more profound than marriage,” wrote Kennedy. “Under the Constitution, gay couples seek in marriage the same legal treatment as straight couples, and it would disparage their choices and diminish their personhood to deny them this right.”
The President called the decision a “victory for America,” and said that it will “strengthen all of our communities.”
The dissenting Justices argued that it is not the court’s mandate to interfere with the individual states’ definition of marriage.
“Many people will rejoice at this decision, and I begrudge none their celebration. But for those who believe in a government of laws, not of men, the majority’s approach is deeply disheartening,” wrote Justice John Roberts. “… The majority’s decision is an act of will, not legal judgment.”
Prominent conservative figure Tony Perkins attacked the decision, saying that it places the government in a “collision course with America’s cherished religious freedoms.”
It will be three weeks before the ruling takes effect, as the court allows this period for the opposition to appeal the decision. However, many anticipate that the many county clerk offices will begin accepting to license Gay marriages starting immediately.