It is always revolting to watch the reaction of so-called “real Americans” in Republican, conservative, and evangelical ranks when a Supreme Court decision is founded on a very basic principle of the U.S. Constitution; equal rights. One might think that all Americans would celebrate a decision founded on the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of equal rights for all Americans, but that has not been the case long before Friday’s ruling that same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states. In fact, leading up to the decision’s announcement, the religious right and Republicans warned the High Court to rule according to the bible or else all Hell would break loose. Ever true to their evangelical fanaticism, while most Americans were celebrating a victory for the LGBT community, the Constitution and equal rights, so-called social conservatives were outraged and went ballistic.
There is no doubt whatsoever that in legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide, the Supreme Court’s majority “held to the founding principle for which this country was founded” that every American is entitled, yes entitled, to equal rights. It is a sad pathetic commentary about a sad pathetic segment of American society that not only do they oppose the Constitution’s guarantee of equality for all Americans, evangelicals relish the authority they have had for far too long to deny equal and civil rights to the LGBT community based on an ancient Jewish text even though they are not adherents to the ancient Jewish faith; they are Christofascists.
In his voluminous opinion for the majority, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s very simple message at the beginning of over 100 pages is thus: the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution gives gay and lesbian couples the same right to marry as opposite-sex couples. In his remarks about the Supreme Court ruling, President Obama certainly seized on Kennedy’s simple message of the majority decision and in his remarks said, “This morning, the Supreme Court reaffirmed that all Americans are entitled to the equal protection of the law; that all people should be treated equally, regardless of who they are or who they love.” This simple message of equality for all Americans in the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment was unfortunately lost on Republicans, evangelical bigots, and the four dissenting Justices; all who made the majority’s decision everything from a vicious attack on religious liberty to “judicial tyranny” to “the destruction of democracy.”
Now, this idea of the nation’s highest court adhering to the founding document, the only “supreme law of the land” is something utterly unconscionable to the majority of Republicans, the theocracy-minded religious right, and four conservatives on the High Court. What is curious indeed, is how the Court’s conservative dissenters made a very rudimentary civil and equal rights case into a “government war on religion,” a Nazi “Putsch,” and a number of other truly bizarre and childish statements that were not becoming of a semi-intelligent 8th grader, much less four sitting jurists of the nation’s highest court.
It should be embarrassing to every American that the four dissenters made statements one expects from the likes of Mike Huckabee, Louis Gohmert, Bryan Fischer, and Sarah Palin instead of Supreme Court Justices, but moronic bible-think is a pathological disorder plaguing the entire evangelical conservative movement. What all the outrage and threats of nullification from Republicans after the ruling informs is that no matter how often conservatives claim to embrace and revere the Constitution, its founding principle of equality for all Americans is something they oppose with religious fervor.
The 14th Amendment that Justice Kennedy cited as the basis for legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states could not be clearer. It says “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” The states that passed laws banning same-sex marriage did, in fact, violate both the “equal protection” and “due process” parts of the 14th Amendment, and in foolishly saying they would nullify a High Court ruling founded solely on the 14th Amendment, Republicans revealed their true intent is nullifying the Constitution. However, Republicans have disavowed the Constitution, and attempted to violate it, over the past six years according to their sick twisted belief that the ancient Mosaic Law they worship is the nation’s highest authority. The bible has no place in the Constitution by design of the Framers because it is unethical in a democratic nation.
The case was never about religious freedom because two people of the same gender marrying does not infringe on any evangelical fanatic’s freedom to pray, worship, sing hymns, or frequent the local mega-church. It also in no way possible is the government’s attempt to force any evangelical to divorce their opposite-sex spouse and marry a member of the same sex. And yet according to Justice Clarence Thomas, because same-sex couples now have the exact same Constitutional rights as opposite-sex couples, which is the entire point of equal civil rights, “religious liberty suffered ruinous consequences.” What Thomas, like every Christofascist in America, believes is that the Constitution’s guarantee of religious freedom means that evangelicals get to deny equal rights of Americans who fail to adhere to religious right dictates taken from their archaic Jewish religious text; a text that is nowhere to be found in the U.S. Constitution.
Every Republican politician, particularly those aspiring to the White House, and religious right fanatics who claim they will not adhere to the Court’s ruling, or will ‘nullify’ the decision by deign of biblical hubris, are really saying that they do not recognize the legitimacy of, and will nullify, the United States’ Constitution. They do not even conceal their hatred of the Constitution is borne of opposition to the Founding Fathers basing it on the principle that all Americans are equal regardless what the religious right, Republicans, or High Court conservatives say or believe.
In his remarks directly after the announcement that the Constitution does indeed apply to every American, President Obama said that, “Our nation was founded on a bedrock principle that we are all created equal… and that it has been a “never-ending quest to ensure those words ring true for every single American.“ The majority decision to afford ever single American the equal and civil right to marry the person they love is no different than previous High Court rulings that struck down the bans on interracial marriage and homosexuality, and despite what terrors Republicans, evangelicals, and High Court conservatives warned about this latest reaffirmation of equal rights, America and evangelical Christians still exist.
As the President said, the ruling yesterday was a victory for the LGBT community, and a victory for America. He also said that “this decision affirms what millions of Americans already believe in their hearts. When all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free.” Sadly, there are millions of Americans, mostly Republicans, evangelicals, and four conservative Supreme Court Justices, who do not believe that all Americans are equal and their beliefs are founded in the real loser in yesterday’s ruling; the burgeoning theocracy that will certainly redouble its efforts to abolish equal rights and the U.S. Constitution that was the biggest winner of all because it still exists and works as the Framers intended.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.