US Supreme Court Rules In Favour Of Same Sex Marriage

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IN PHOTO: People celebrate the United States Supreme Court's landmark decision that legalized same-sex marriage throughout the country, in Salt Lake City, Utah June 26, 2015.
IN PHOTO: People celebrate the United States Supreme Court's landmark decision that legalized same-sex marriage throughout the country, in Salt Lake City, Utah June 26, 2015. The court ruled 5-4 that the Constitution's guarantees of due process and equal protection under the law mean that states cannot ban same-sex marriages. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart

United States of America’s Supreme Court ruled in favour of the same-sex marriage nationwide on Friday. U.S. President Barack Obama called Jim Obergefell, the lead plaintiff of same-sex marriage case, and his supporters to congratulate them over the victory.

It was a 5-4 vote. The justices who were in favour of the decision were Justices Anthony Kennedy, Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, while the four opposing justices were Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.

"No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family," Kennedy wrote in his closing paragraph. "In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than they once were. ... They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right."

Kennedy mentioned the hope of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community is not to be condemned to live in loneliness because of civilisation’s oldest institutions. The Justice wrote the opinion in significant gay rights cases. He discussed that same-sex couples should be able to exercise the right to marry in all states.

After uttering the key sentence, some people in the court's public gallery smiled, while some wiped tears from their eyes. Meanwhile, the four conservative justices wrote their own dissent.

According to NY Times, Roberts Jr., one of the conservative justices who wrote a dissent, said the Constitution had nothing to say about the same-sex marriage, while Justice Antonin Scalia mocked Justice Kennedy’s opinion. Justice Scalia described Kennedy's opinion as pretentious as its content is egotistic. 

Obama called Obergefell via CNN to give his warm words. "I just wanted to say congratulations. Your leadership on this has changed the country," said Obama.

The U.S. is now the 21st country to recognise same-sex marriage. Married same-sex couples will now have the same legal rights and benefits as heterosexual couples.

Way back in 1967, the case of Loving v. Virginia was similar to gay marriage as it outlawed bans on interracial marriage.  The case was brought by couple Mildred Loving, a black woman, and Richard Loving, a white man. Both had been sentenced to a year in prison in Virginia for marrying each other.

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