Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Historic- or Not (2)

Yesterday I commented here that I was afraid that the Supreme Court will do its s - l - o - w turtle dance around any major change that would make a difference. Today's discussion and questions seem to indicate that I may have been on the right track. Court watchers heard what sounded like good arguments that DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) will probably be shot down. That is not bad. That is good. For those who live in states where gay marriage is legal, it means the Federal benefits ban would be lifted.

Looking back on yesterday it seems likely that they will decide that case on Proposition 8's constitutionality along  narrow legal grounds. That's okay- if you live in California. But it sets no precedent for anywhere else.

Obviously the hope would be that this would be the impetus for changes to be encouraged elsewhere, especially in states that do not now have bans on gay marriage.It may also spur some movement to reverse those states that ban it. So some movement may be possible.

But those of us who hoped for a Brown v. Board of Education or Rove v. Wade type decision will probably be disappointed. Chief Justice Roberts will most likely be the most significant influence in the whole process, working between the sides to get a workable compromise. But in the slow movement of a court that almost by working definition lags behind change, that will mean only a small step forward.

Probably better than none.

By the way, I guess that symbol up there in the right corner of the post was a social media sensation yesterday. A good sign of the change that is still taking place.

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