U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Same-Sex Marriage

The highest court in the land has deemed marriage a fundamental right.

Photo via AP

Photo via AP

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in favor of same-sex marriage in a landmark 5-4 decision.

Overturning an decision by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, the court ruled that the 14th Amendment requires states to not only license a marriage between two people of the same sex, but recognize same-sex marriages licensed in other states as well.

“It is now clear that the challenged laws burden the liberty of same-sex couples, and it must be further acknowledged that they abridge central precepts of equality,” the Obergefell v. Hodges majority decision, penned by Justice Anthony Kennedy, reads. “Especially against a long history of disapproval of their relationships, this denial to same-sex couples of the right to marry works a grave and continuing harm. The imposition of this disability on gays and lesbians serves to disrespect and subordinate them. And the Equal Protection Clause, like the Due Process Clause, prohibits this unjustified infringement of the fundamental right to marry.”

Chief Justice John Roberts dissented, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Anthony Scalia, who called the decision a “threat to American democracy.”

“If you are among the many Americans–of whatever sexual orientation—who favor expanding same-sex marriage, by all means celebrate today’s decision,” Robert wrote in his dissenting opinion. “Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not Celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.”

You can read the full text of the decision here.