USA Today reports:
The four justices appointed by Democratic presidents were joined by Justice Anthony Kennedy, a Republican appointee. Within two years, more than 150,000 same-sex couples got married. According to U.S. Census estimates, there are more than 500,000 married same-sex couples in the country.
The impact of those unions has been more than cultural. Same-sex weddings have generated more than $3 billion over the past five years, the Williams Institute study estimates, which also said the weddings have generated some $244 million in state and local taxes and created nearly 50,000 jobs.
The 5-4 Supreme Court ruling has been pelted by countless other minor challenges, but so far, none has seriously threatened it. In fact, earlier this month the high court ruled in Bostick v. Clayton County that employers couldn’t fire workers simply for being gay or transgendered.
In 1996, only 27 percent of Americans supported the freedom to marry for same-sex couples. By 2015, decades of activism, visibility, and engagement had grown that to a 63 percent majority.
Gallup confirmed this month that support has continued to grow and broaden. Today at least two-thirds of all Americans are in favor of marriage equality, including 83 percent of Democrats, 71 percent of independents, and even a 49 percent plurality of Republicans.
As recently as 1996, at the time of the world’s first-ever freedom to marry victory in Hawaii, there were zero states, zero countries in the world, where loving and committed same-sex couples could marry. As of last month’s win in Costa Rica, there are now 29 freedom to marry countries, representing more than 1.1 billion people.
In July 2013, Jim Obergefell married his longtime partner in love, John Arthur, who was gravely ill with Lou Gehrig’s disease. Because Ohio at the time didn’t allow same-sex unions, the couple flew to Maryland to exchange vows.
Arthur died of the disease three months later, and Obergefell sued to be listed on the death certificate as Arthur’s husband. That case was one of six argued together before the high court. Obergefell was the lead plaintiff, meaning the case bore his name, though he was joined by dozens of other plaintiffs.
The whirlwind of that suit meant Obergefell was never alone with his thoughts. But as the focus has shifted to other minority groups, he’s had time to learn that, contrary to the self-help books, grief does not come in clean stages. “That implies it’s the same for every person, and it isn’t,” he said. “I’m still grieving, I’m still processing.”
Hour Detroit reports:
Five years ago in June, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to strike down all same-sex marriage bans. Of the four cases, [Michigan Attorney General Dana] Nessel asserts, DeBoer was most significant, which is why it rankles her that the landmark is known as Obergefell v. Hodges because of a quirk in the order in which the appeals were filed. “To my dying day, this will make me bitter,” she says.
“We were the only case that was truly just about the right to marry your same-sex partner. We were the only ones who tried the case. We put in more in terms of blood, sweat, and tears than anybody else. April and Jayne should have been synonymous with that case. If you read the opinion, the justices mostly talk about April and Jayne’s case. Ultimately, from an historical perspective, honestly, April and Jayne got robbed.”