The United States Supreme Court announced its decision on Friday concerning an appeal by multiple states to continue their respective bans on same-sex marriage.
And to the surprise of very few, the Court voted narrowly, five votes to four, in favor of upholding the lower court’s ruling to invalidate the bans, effectively making SSM legal in all 50 states.
In his opinion for the majority, Justice Anthony Kennedy cited the 14th Amendment loosely and waxed philosophical about the emotional conditions of those who might otherwise be denied ‘basic dignity’.
Chief Justice John Roberts joined his conservative colleagues on the Court in writing separate minority opinions in which they attacked the majority as anything but constitutional.
Rather than settle a long-disputed rift, the decision has plunged the nation deeper into a chasm of cultural divide that pits traditional conservatives against cultural progressives in what some are calling a watershed moment in history similar to Roe v. Wade.
Conservative leaders across the country have begun circulating sentiments that harken back to Martin Luther King, Jr’s call for civil disobedience. A refusal by officials in heavily conservative states to comply threatens drag the country into further turmoil.