We did it!
This morning The Supreme Court of the United States issued its rulings on both Proposition 8 in California and Section 3 of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act. As we hoped, the Court’s rulings confirmed what PFLAGers across the country have always known to be true: that love is love, family is family, and marriage is marriage!
This morning’s rulings–striking down both Proposition 8 in California (on standing) and Section 3 of DOMA (as unconstitutional)–are a HUGE victory for our families. Our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) loved ones are another step closer to full equality in the eyes of the law.
But we have a long way to go from partial legal protection to full equality and acceptance. There is so much more work to do:
- There are still 37 states where our LGBT loved ones aren’t able to legally marry the person they love…
- In 33 states you can still be fired from your job for being LGBT…
- The majority of states lack protections for–or openly discriminate against–LGBT parents, whether foster, adoptive, step, or biological…
- There is still no comprehensive, enumerated federal safe schools legislation…
And those are just a few pieces of policy we have yet to put in place.
Beyond the policy, beyond the laws and the courts and the legislators, there are the hearts and minds of those who don’t yet accept, and the support needed for those who aren’t accepted by their own families, friends, and communities.
We’ve seen them–the LGBT kids who’ve been forced from their homes by families who don’t support them, bullied at school with no safe place to turn. The LGBT people who have lost their jobs for simply being who they are. They come to Pride celebrations seeking that PFLAG hug to replace the one their own parents, families, friends, co-workers haven’t offered.
We’ve heard them–those who still believe our LGBT loved ones don’t deserve protection, that they deserve ridicule, that they are “less than.”
As PFLAGers we will work tirelessly to build the bridge of policy to full legal protection, but we know too well that to get people to cross that bridge to full acceptance takes even more work.
So let’s continue to share our stories so that those who aren’t yet accepting–those who merely tolerate or, worse, denigrate–will see that our families are already here in their communities, in their churches, temples and mosques, in their workplaces and hospitals. They are teachers, executives, doctors, lawyers, barbers and baristas. They are the heroes catching the criminals, putting out the fires, and defending our country’s borders. And we will work relentlessly, telling our stories and sharing our experiences, to get to full acceptance for each and every one of them.
Let’s celebrate…and then let’s get back to work!