The Supreme Court in June said that same-sex couples had a constitutional right to marry, effectively requiring that the 13 states that prohibit such unions reverse those bans. Over the last two years, the number of states authorizing gay marriage had expanded rapidly because of legislative decisions, referendums or court orders. A ruling by the Hawaii Supreme Court in allowing same-sex marriage, along with rising demands for marriage equality nationwide, prompted a backlash. In , Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act, banning federal recognition of same-sex marriage. In , Massachusetts became the first state to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
Supreme Court Ruling Makes Same-Sex Marriage a Right Nationwide
Raft of assisted suicide laws introduced in states – Catholic World Report
That's the assessment of Hillary Goodridge, one of 14 people whose lawsuit led Massachusetts in to become the first state to sanction gay and lesbian marriages. Twelve years later, by a vote, the high court made it 50 states. More than , same-sex couples in the United States are married, including about , who have wed since the ruling. The Supreme Court extended workplace protections nationwide last week for the LGBTQ community, ruling that a landmark civil rights law barring sex discrimination in the workplace applies to gay, lesbian and transgender workers. But the court's majority , led by conservative Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch , did not close the door on religious exemptions, saying "other employers in other cases may raise free exercise arguments that merit careful consideration.
Same-Sex Marriage, Civil Unions, and Domestic Partnerships
In the landmark case Obergefell v. Hodges, the U. Supreme Court ruled that all state bans on same-sex marriage were unconstitutional, making gay marriage legal throughout America. The ruling was a culmination of decades of struggles, setbacks and victories along the road to full marriage equality in the United States. In , just one year after the historic Stonewall Riots that galvanized the gay rights movement, law student Richard Baker and librarian James McConnell applied for a marriage license in Minnesota.
In the landmark decision, the majority of justices ruled that states must license same-sex marriages and also recognize gay marriages performed legally in other states. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. Each filed their own dissenting opinion.