When I think of “love wins,” I remember when I got married in 2010 in upstate New York. I recall standing beside my wife in front of our guests making a speech to express gratitude to our friends, family, and community.
I also recall looking at people among our cherished guests who could not enjoy the privilege. They did not have the right for the expression of their love to be recognized universally and in public. A year later, New York would legalize same-sex marriage. And even those who exercised their rights to marry in the state had no guarantee it’d be recognized anywhere else.
It is painful to think of how deeply this inequality contradicts the preservation of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. But here we are: just a few days after President Biden signed the Respect for Marriage Act, which codifies the legal right for same-sex couples and interracial couples to marry.
This legislation requires all states to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states and federally recognizes these marriages. This means, love wins.
What a moment for us all!
The extension of this right comes at a pivotal time in history — and not just in America. I see and hear about the rise in nationalism, antisemitism, xenophobia, political polarization…the list goes on. And yet…This!
This day stands in stark contrast with those who say, ‘things are getting worse.’ Because even when many things get worse, there’s a fight left in us all to make things better. Grassroots engagement and coalition building were foundational to ensuring bipartisan support for this legislation long before it came to a vote.
We celebrate this: love wins. Our friends and co-workers across the country have won dignity for their personal lives and equality before the law.
The ability for one’s marriage to be equal with other marriages opens up belonging, equity, and the possibility for every person to bring their authentic self to work. At the end of the day, we’re all human, and companies need to acknowledge and support their people. We must continue to exercise the empathy muscle and meet people where they are.
And while there’s still so much work to do to preserve and expand our liberty by codifying our rights, the Respect for Marriage Act is firmly on the right side of justice. Let’s keep fighting for better, together.