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Editorial: SCOTUS' implications within the community it serves

BY DI EDITORIAL BOARD | JUNE 29, 2015 5:00 AM

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The U.S. Supreme Court reached a monumental decision in the Obergefell v. Hodges case presented June 26, ruling that state-level bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional — a long overdue interpretation of the 14th Amendment. Now, the remaining 13 states, primarily in the Midwest and South, that held bans on same-sex marriage must recognize the holy matrimony of those who love their own sex.

Though it hasn’t gone without contention, the most conservative of lawmakers are required to recognize the court’s ruling. “My view of marriage is based on my Christian faith,” said Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, whose state had seven cases of same-sex marriage sitting in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit. “My views on marriage aren’t evolving with the polls.”

In mere days, though, his state will have to accept those marriages, while the United States will join with the 17 other countries across the globe, including Brazil and the United Kingdom, in allowing same-sex marriage nationwide. 

Opponents, such as Jindal, unsurprisingly object to the high court ruling with claims that are largely grounded in religion. The current dichotomy in the wake of this ruling highlights the dissociated rhetoric in this country. Despite surveys such as the Gallup Poll suggesting the majority of Americans believe in legalized same-sex marriage, dissenting opinions fill news headlines.

However, the reportage lacks an awareness of the residual inequality that the Obergefell ruling leaves behind for the LGBTQ community in which it championed. Acknowledging marriage for those in the transgendered or non-gender-conforming community is still left unanswered.

The first three letters in the abbreviation may now celebrate the social and economic equality they deserve through marriage. However, the transgendered and queer, or questioning, members lack a definitive answer from the ruling.

The Supreme Court ruled on the most “palatable” aspect of the LGBTQ community.

Furthermore, the image of LGBTQ pride has been portrayed as what is most easily recognizable: same-sex couples. Photographs alongside news coverage indicate such. Though integral to human and civil rights, there is still a long trek toward real egalitarian progress. Those who cannot or choose not to associate with a single sex or gender are still marginalized in the ways they love.

Jennicet Gutierrez, a trans Latino activist, was quickly hushed and removed during her interruption of President Obama’s Pride speech held June 24 in Washington, celebrating progress toward gender equality. His response was rather arrogant and trite as well, likening the incident to disrespecting a party host.

Following a triumphant day toward equal rights in this country, there are still apertures that need to be filled. Gender equality does not stop at the letter B. Members of the trans and queer community deserve the socioeconomic equality that their fellow LGBTQ members received June 26.


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