"Jungle Love" - Morris Day and the Time (Minneapolis Natives)
So the Minnesota House just passed a marriage equality bill, two days after Delaware recognized same sex marriage. The Minnesota Senate is expected to the pass the same bill on Monday and Governor Mark Dayton has pledged to sign it into law. It's just part of an amazing manifestation of legislative support for the love that once did not dare speak its name. It's a fantastic development.
A couple of thoughts. Having just spent Monday at a memorial service for a member of a longtime gay union -- one where the couple had recently taken advantage of marriage equality in DC -- it heartens me to see the love and commitment that many of my friends have enjoyed being recognized as fully the equal of heterosexual unions, because it is. Quite simply it is. The bonds -- and the burdens -- of a lifetime are actually pretty much indistinguishable, regardless of sexual preference.
Second, I wonder if these dramatic democratic developments leave the Supreme Court more inclined to render a narrow verdict in the Prop 8 and DOMA cases?
And finally, although my emotions associated with this progress are by and large joyful and without malice, there is a small part of me that is also reveling in the crushing of our enemies -- I'd say 90% large-minded happiness, 10% spite-driven euphoria. This small part of me relishes the marginalization of those on the other side, savors the alienation they must be feeling, finds happiness in their spittle-flecked rage as it dawns on them it truly isn't their country anymore. Slowly -- and then not so slowly -- they are consigned to the ghettoes of reaction, the disreputable neighborhoods of ignorance and prejudice, offering a world view that has come to be seen as an embarrassment in polite company. I revel in their exile.
There is still work to be done and the likelihood that the marriage equality movement will hit a temporary wall at a certain point, once the blue states are converted. But the wall will be temporary -- the generational momentum will ultimately overwhelm even the most reactionary bastions.
I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it during my lifetime. The triumphs of the civil rights movement, remarkable as they were, never fully eradicated the racial animus that to this day remains a feature of much of American life. One senses a sea change here that is truly transformational, with a younger generation coming to maturity that is truly lacking in homophobia. It's a great thing.