Don’t you love days like this?   Days when good history is made? Days when humankind has taken a step forward? Days when injustice, ignorance and prejudice have been decked?

U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker released his 136-page ruling Thursday that overturned California’s passage of  Proposition 8 in November 2008 to bar gay marriages. It was breathtaking. He determined the proposition’s passage was simply based on moral disapproval of gay marriage. He found there was no rational basis for excluding gays and lesbians from marriage.  “The evidence shows conclusively that moral and religious views form the only basis for a belief that same-sex couples are different from opposite-sex couples,” Walker wrote.

Now, of course, the anti-gay marriage forces are appealing, hoping the 9th Circuit Court, also convening  in San Francisco, will shoot down Walker’s ruling.  He has stayed his order until Friday to allow the backers of Proposition 8 to make their appeal.  For now, alas, Wednesday’s action doesn’t automatically let marriage ceremonies resume.   Some 18,000 couples were able to marry in the months that it was legal in the state.

In early 2008, the  California Supreme Court ruled that the state Constitution permitted same-sex marriage. That set the religious right and conservatives, especially the Mormon Church and Catholics, to poured tens of millions of dollars into a ballot campaign to get such marriages ended.  It became the most expensive ballot initiative in U.S. history.  There were estimates that $22 millions came from Mormons to pass the measure.    Earlier this year, the independent documentary film  “8: The Mormon Proposition” examined the campaign by members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to get gay marriage stopped in California. It suggested there was strong pressure on members to pony up funds.

The issue is expected to take years to be resolved.  Regardless of what the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals does, its ruling will be appealed to the Supreme Court.  That court would have a batch of same-sex issues to consider to take up.  A fear is that the current High Cour that leans conservative could outlaw marriage permanently.  But with aging  justices and the right replacement of judges, things could look promising for a final law of the land that end such discrimination.

It’s been said again and again the full acceptance of GLBT persons is inevitable because the demographics are on the side of it.  Polls show that opposition come largely from those over 50, while adults who are younger don’t have a problem.   The generational shift is taking care of things as it has with lots of other civil rights issues through time. Pity those on the wrong side of history who gnash their teeth and just don’t get it.

It takes time for justice sometimes, and so many suffer in the interim. But there no stopping causes that are right.

Advertisements