Keeping Families Together
The Asian And Pacific Islander Family Pride Blog
June 28, 2013
Let’s Celebrate Now, Tomorrow Is Time Enough To Reflect
By BELINDA AND JOHN DRONKERS-LAURETA
What an extraordinary week this was. The Supreme Court’s decisions on DOMA and Prop 8 are milestones that will be taught in history books to children who will wonder what the fuss was all about. They are milestones for so many who worked with implacable faith to make what can now happen, happen. Now is a time for celebration, a time for jubilation. Soon enough there will come the realization that this victory was really not quiet what we would have liked, that the court was sharply divided, that much work remains to be done, and that complacency cannot be allowed to take hold of us. But not now.
One of the highlights for us was the majestic language Justice Kennedy used to announce the decision. He read:
DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty. It imposes a disability on the class by refusing to acknowledge a status the State finds to be dignified and proper.
. . .
The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity. By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others, the federal statute is in violation of the Fifth Amendment.
“Entitled to recognition and protection” . . . “dignified and proper” . . . “protect in personhood and dignity,” words that much more eloquently echo what we always insisted: there is no difference between our gay son’s 16-year relationship with his partner and the relationships of his sister and brother with their partners. Theirs was allowed to be enshrined in marriage, why wasn’t his?
Another highlight came when Nancy Pelosi reacted to Michelle Bachman’s comments on the ruling (see it here). Bachman had spouted her usual inane drivel and a reporter asked Representative Pelosi for her reaction. Listening to the reporter with hands clasped in front, she unclasped her hands, raised them up, palms up, elbows tucked, in a classic gesture of indifference and said: “Who cares?”
An amazing highlight came from a Catholic priest. Monsignor Charles Pope saw the light, and proposed that the Catholic Church use the word Holy Matrimony instead of marriage. He wrote that the traditional meaning of the word marriage is being redefined and that it already no longer means what the Church wants it to mean. Instead, he suggests the Church should use “Holy Matrimony” instead of marriage. We agree. If a couple persists in believing that marriage is only between a man and a woman and wants the blessing of a God who also believes that, then find the right church, but do not impose that silliness on others.
The greatest highlights came from the faces of our friends. The sparkling eyes, the continuous smiles, the lighter steps, the joy. “We did it!” That’s right, we did. Paraphrasing Winston Churchill: Americans can be counted on to do the right thing, after they have done all the wrong things. Tomorrow is Pink Saturday and the day after that, Pride Day: Let’s really celebrate.
Belinda and John Dronkers-Laureta are board members of Asian & Pacific Islander Family Pride www.apifamilypride.org