Earlier this year, the United States Supreme Court handed down a ruling that made gay marriage the law of the land. Despite the protests of conservative across the country, same-sex couples were finally given the same rights as everyone else to marry the consenting adult of their choice.
The rights of same-sex couples became a given in liberal circles, and many people seemed to have thought the fight was over – except it isn’t. In various states across the country, right-wing conservatives have continued to wage war on gay rights in the legal system. This latest example comes from Arkansas, and it’s yet another totally pointless waste of time and state resources.
The state Supreme Court agreed and said that “the best course of action is to preserve the status quo with regard to the statutory provisions while we consider the circuit court’s ruling.”
On Dec. 1, Judge Fox held that a state law restricting parentage identification to heterosexual couples was unconstitutional in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision this year legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide.
“(The) decision affords the plaintiffs, as same-sex couples, the same constitutional rights with respect to the issuance of birth certificates and amended birth certificates as opposite-sex couples,” Fox wrote at the time. (Source)
If you’re a liberal who thought the issues of same-sex marriage and gay rights were settled by the Supreme Court, you’re horribly mistaken. Right now, there are many Republican candidates for various offices across the country who are sworn to reverse the decision in Obergefell v. Hodges.
Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and others want to undo the ruling of the Supreme Court. Conservatives in lower courts are trying to reverse gay rights once again, by using state courts who are more sympathetic to their belief system.
Despite the fact that some conservatives have moved beyond the issue of gay rights, others are firmly entrenched in the lines of the culture wars of the past couple of decades. Many still believe that the Supreme Court ruling is a temporary setback, and that they will eventually overcome what they see as a liberal encroachment on their right to discriminate against others.
At the federal level, at least for now, LGBT rights are safe. That doesn’t mean that at the state level, conservatives aren’t trying to erode those protections as much as they can. They’re preparing cases that can eventually be appealed to the Supreme Court, in hopes that it becomes more conservative under a Republican in the White House.
If liberals do not turn out to vote in the next few elections, we could completely turn the control of state and federal offices over to right-wing Republicans like Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio. Both of these candidates have stated their opposition to marriage equality, and Ted Cruz has garnered the support of evangelical conservatives like James Dobson.
There is a lot at stake in 2016 and beyond. In states like Arkansas, or across the rest of the Bible Belt, LGBT rights, workers right and many other protections will be under assault. If you want to stop it, you have to get out and vote, and try to make sure others do as well. There is no other viable alternative.
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