Today we're pausing from the Ireland trip so that Tom can share these important thoughts:
Without a doubt, last Friday was a momentous day. It happened to be our 6th wedding anniversary. It coincided with the anniversary of two other significant SCOTUS decisions – the right of LGBT couples to privacy, and the right of gay couples to receive federal recognition (e.g., the right to inherit property without incurring a huge tax liability). Now, it will be remembered as the day that LBGT couples were granted the freedom to marry the one they love. We’ll see if someday in the future June 26th becomes some kind of officially recognized day because of these three monumental decisions rendered by the SCOTUS securing the rights of LGBTs. But the fight is far from over.
In between the tears welling up in my eyes, as I watched the commentary on last week’s historic decision, it seems the next apparent fight for equality for the LGBT community to take up will be in the area of public accommodation – in other words, the right for LGBT individuals to receive service from a business operating in the marketplace without being discriminated against. Many people on the right believe they indeed have the right to turn down service to gay people because it violates their “religious freedom.”
While you’re never going to overcome such stupidity with reason, I’m not so sure the answer is to clog up the courts with lawsuits. Rather, I’m advocating that we should let market forces determine whether or not a business owner should be allowed to remain a bigot and stay in business. I mean, at fifty-cough years old, I’ve gotten so used to being discriminated against, that I’m getting more adept at just shrugging it off. I mean, I’d rather just take my money to the next guy rather than stand my ground and confront an ignorant closed minded individual.
|Remember these signs?|
Another example. When my sister and I were growing up, my parents took us to Rehoboth Beach for vacation. I still remember seeing the signs posted on hotels and motels: “We rent rooms to families only” as a way to deter gays from even bothering. Today, gays have pretty much overrun the whole town. So I suspect that in the short run at least, we will see an uptick in the anti-gay sentiment as very vocal sore losers are paraded in front of a microphone for comment.
Their rhetoric is going to sting, no doubt, but we just need to push through the ignorance to get to a better place.
As President Obama said in his statement last Friday, this was a win not just the LGBT community, but for America as we begin to witness a new generation of Americans starting to reshape the country into the image that they want, and we see the old die off.