Watch a slideshow of Floridians celebrating the Supreme Court's ruling on same-sex marriage.
In what felt like an eternal uphill battle, the LGBT community (and the rest of the country) reached a major milestone on Friday, after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage was constitutional. The vote was a close call, coming in at 5-4. (Can we, like, petition that the four judges in the minority be blacklisted from any future Pride events?)
“No longer may this liberty be denied,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy said in a statement for the majority. “No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were.”
Kennedy added that marriage is a “keystone of our social order” and that the plaintiffs involved in the case were seeking “equal dignity.” Amen.
There was a chance that the ruling wouldn't go so well, but whatever the outcome would be, the LGBT community would rally at Rumors for a celebration at 6 p.m. Friday. Luckily, the ruling was a success and everyone arrived with pure jubilation. Seriously, we've never seen so many happy people in one place at once. It was like a commercial for Cymbalta.
“It's our constitutional right,” said Seda Aktas, owner of Aktas Law and a former prosecutor. “Our constitutional rights are fundamental. They're very much enshrined in the 14th Amendment... The right to due process will always prevail. What we really want is to be treated equally, as our counterparts, as all citizens of the United States.”
The Human Rights Campaign, Equality Florida, and Wilton Manors Mayor Gary Resnick were in attendance.
“It's actually very personal for me,” Resnick told us. “When I came out to my family a couple of years ago, my sister, who I am actually very close to, cried, because she said she's known gay people and that it was such a lonely lifestyle because they couldn't get married, and they couldn't really be open about their lives.”
He continued, “This is about loving who you want to love and living your life in openness.”
Before a single drink was imbibed, the community was elated and grinning from ear to ear. It was a historical day, after all. While it meant same-sex couples would soon be free to marry anywhere they please in the good ol' US of A, it was also a huge step for the transgender community as well, who are still victims of escalating hate crimes.
“I'm happy that we're making moves in the right direction,” said local trans woman, Erica, who did not want to give a last name, for the exact reasons stated above. “This day is for all of us.”