Incredibly, unbelievably, FINALLY, today the U.S. Supreme Court struck down bans against same-sex marriage in all 50 states. If Facebook, where I spend all my e-time, is any indication, people are rightly freakin’ thrilled.
This means that love wins. But it means more than marriage. It means security for families. It means being able to visit and make end-of-life decisions for ill partners. It means the protections that come from being legally married are extended to all U.S. citizens. So, you know, civil rights. Equality.
I made a vow to myself today NOT to read any comments under any of the remarkable stories, beautiful pictures and triumphant posts I read. I have a tendency to do that. To look for and marvel at the ugly, to sit and stare at the nastiness with my mouth agape, while my blood pressure rises and I think, “Why?? How can you..?? Really???”
Not today. There were so many pictures of people hugging and kissing and celebrating, and I refused to give any hateful asshole a voice by reading their nastiness. It was hard not to click, but I succeeded.
However… (why has there to be a however?) I witnessed Facebook friends who are also Christians respond to, reprimand or try to talk reason to other Christians who were obviously making those comments I refused to see.
These heartfelt entreaties all read pretty much the same: What I am about to say will offend some people, but… Jesus is about love. We are called to be loving and accepting. We are meant to be examples of caring.
And then. All of them, every one, no matter how well written, hits it:
And they lose. It’s over. It doesn’t matter how reasonable and loving and caring they are trying to be. Once they say the S word, it erases every open-minded and loving thing that came before.
Yes, they say, I know it’s a sin but… I sin too. Don’t judge your neighbor.
I’m not sure how saying something (or really, someone) is a sin isn’t judging your neighbor.
Ah this one. I have heard this before:
“Love the sinner, hate the sin.”
I’m sorry, but I can’t really see anyone benefiting from that flawed, judgmental, conditional love. And I can’t see anyone being surprised by that hate.
I am very, very lucky to know what love is, and I promise you, it’s not that.
What I read in this is a kind of shaky, self-congratulatory acceptance. “It is so good of me to welcome you to our church. I want you to know I can see past your sins, even if most of us in here can’t.”
That, to me, makes the wide-open church doors seem to be spring-loaded and edged in jagged metal teeth. It does not look safe to me. It does not look comforting to me. I can’t imagine finding peace in there. If the voices speaking loudest are accurate, then the people inside those doors are hurtful and angry and confused about what love is.
I’m not saying that this is actually the case, I’m just saying that that’s what the PR says.
Outside those doors and free from that confusion, the people I love and respect and cherish have been granted the civil liberties they should have had all along. It almost seems wrong for me to celebrate, because I am disgusted that it took this long. But things are righter than they were before. I am filled with unqualified happiness for the people whose lives are more secure and filled with love than they were yesterday.
If I got to decide what God felt like, it would be how I felt when I read that ruling this morning and felt clean happiness for so many people.
Check out all this God: From Human Rights Campaign