Aaron Sorkin, eat your heart out.
Sorkin is the creator and principal writer of “The Newsroom,” an HBO drama set in a fictionalized broadcast station that covers real events like the death of Osama bin Laden. It seems like June 26, 2013, will be the focus of a future episode.
Starting yesterday morning and going well into the night, reports were coming in about a 13-hour filibuster in Texas. It was led by a state senator, Wendy Davis, attempting to kill a bill that would have heavily restricted abortion clinics and closed about 80 percent of them as a result.
Donning pink tennis shoes and a skirt suit that Hillary Clinton would have been proud of, Davis stood and spoke for 11 hours. At one point, she even put on a back brace in the middle of her filibuster. Is it too soon to put her on my list of heroes?
With the help of some other senators, Davis killed the bill and, finally, took a seat 13 hours later. This story itself could have driven the news for a week, and the “Today” show for a month, let alone my fascination with how someone could stand for 13 straight hours.
While Davis was getting some well-deserved rest, the United States Supreme Court was releasing its ruling on the U.S. v. Windsor.
The Supreme Court overturned aspects of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) this morning and also dismissed an appeal on California’s Proposition 8. For the latter, the court declared private parties cannot defend the measure prohibiting gay and lesbian couples from marrying.
Yes, Davis will probably shrink back to obscurity within a month. Yes, I realize the court’s decisions today don’t make a sweeping proclamation about the constitutionality of same-sex marriage. But this doesn’t excuse the fact , for once, good news is dominating the news cycle.
These are steps toward a more tolerant United States, a country where I can actually take pride in calling myself a citizen, rather than contemplating the benefits of becoming a Canadian.
We are in a country that has recently taken so many steps back from equality: Amendment One in North Carolina, Proposition 8 and “Glee” post-season one, among other things. The fact that today’s decisions prevented another step back is a step forward in itself.
As everything currently stands, same-sex couples who have been married in states which allow same-sex marriage will be recognized in those states. They will receive the same federal entitlements that are available to heterosexual couples, including tax and health benefits and family hospital visits.
Twelve states and Washington D.C., allow same-sex marriage. The fight clearly isn’t over, but for the day, it’s okay to celebrate. We know we still have a long way to go until the United States has fully legalized same-sex marriage, but we are certainly heading in the right direction, something that didn’t even seem feasible a year ago.
Today, America's colors are not just red, white and blue but orange, yellow, green and violet too.