Obergefell continued, "the four words etched onto the front of the Supreme Court — 'equal justice under law' — apply to us, too. Holding a photograph of Arthur as he spoke Friday, Obergefell said, "No American should have to suffer that indignity.
Obama says the ruling "will strengthen all of our communities" by offering dignity and equal status to all same-sex couples and their families. The president calls the ruling "a victory for America. More On The Ruling, And Obama's Reaction "The ancient origins of marriage confirm its centrality, but it has not stood in isolation from developments in law and society," Kennedy wrote.
His opinion sketches a history of how ideas of marriage have evolved along with the changing roles and legal status of women. Comparing that evolution to society's views of gays and lesbians, Kennedy noted that for years, "a truthful declaration by same-sex couples of what was in their hearts had to remain unspoken. The Supreme Court said that the right to marry is fundamental — and Kennedy wrote that under the 14th Amendment's protections, "couples of the same-sex may not be deprived of that right and that liberty.
Calling the ruling "deeply disheartening," Roberts said that those on the winning side of the issue should celebrate a victory — "But do not celebrate the Constitution," he wrote. Welcoming the news on Twitter, President Obama wrote, "Today is a big step in our march toward equality. Gay and lesbian couples now have the right to marry, just like anyone else.
The justices ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges , which is linked to three other same-sex marriage cases that rose up through the court system. Together, they involve a dozen couples who challenged same-sex marriage bans in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee — the only states with bans on marriage between gay and lesbian couples that had been sustained by a federal appeals court.
Friday's ruling overturned that decision by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. As the Supreme Court's summary states, "The history of marriage is one of both continuity and change.
The 14th Amendment , we'll remind you, was ratified shortly after the Civil War. It has to do with U. Before Friday's ruling, gay marriage had already been made legal in 37 states and the District of Columbia — by either legislative or voter action or by federal courts that overturned state' bans.
As NPR's Nina Totenberg reported when the Supreme Court heard the current case back in April, conservative justices had pointed questions for the attorneys: The answer was that it has to be worked out under state laws. He said, but that could happen — it could happen that a minister would be forced to marry two gay men, in violation of his beliefs.
A recent Gallup poll found that 60 percent of Americans — an all-time high — support extending the same rights and privileges to same-sex marriages as traditional ones.
That figure included "37 percent of Republicans, 64 percent of independents, and 76 percent of Democrats," as we reported last month. And it included all age groups except for one: The court noted the change in thinking, stating: Later in the century, cultural and political developments allowed same-sex couples to lead more open and public lives. Extensive public and private dialogue followed, along with shifts in public attitudes.
Questions about the legal treatment of gays and lesbians soon reached the courts, where they could be discussed in the formal discourse of the law.