My heart goes out today to friends and family in my home state of Alabama.
Marriage rights are secure in thirty-seven of fifty states. More than seventy percent of Americans live in areas where gay and lesbian people may marry. The nation’s direction on marriage rights has never been clearer.
It is embarrassing and heart-breaking, then, to see officials in Alabama straining against the rising tide of equality.
This happened once before, in the 1960’s, when Alabama trampled on the civil rights of black Americans. And today, men like Alabama’s Judge Roy Moore, guided by superstition and a lust for short-term political gain, once again draw on a deep reservoir of hatefulness to fuel a pointless denial of liberties. In doing so, they work against the best interests of the people they have been appointed to protect.
Actions like these in the state of Alabama (and the cowardice and apathy of elected officials in states like Georgia) illustrate why the Supreme Court must make marriage equality the law of the land.
Real threats (like climate change) and real challenges (like income inequality) languish while foolish men waste precious time on pointless political grandstanding.
History will judge these people harshly. In the meantime, it’s up to us to speak out, to oppose them, to vote against them, and to drive out the shadows of hatefulness with the sharp, clear light of “liberty and justice for all.