Friday’s Supreme Court ruling exploded into my life as Twitter and Facebook became covered in rainbows. I have never been more proud of the people in my life as when the United States of America legalised same sex marriage throughout all fifty states. It didn’t matter if the people posting were gay, straight, bisexual or identified as anything else, all I saw were messages of love and congratulations.
And why should I have seen anything else? Who has the right to tell anyone whom they should and should not love? I also believe that love has very little to do with gender. You don’t fall in love with someone’s genitals, you fall in love with the person. Therefore it seems ludicrous to have laws for or against two people marrying based on their gender.
37 of the 50 states in America had already legalised gay marriage. The Supreme Court ruling ensures that states with more conservative (homophobic) populations can no longer deny anyone the right to marriage. Perhaps, with time, this would have become individual state law but Friday’s decision means the law is unified nation wide. The first same-sex couple to marry in notoriously republican Texas were Jack Evans and George Harris. These two men are aged 85 and 82 respectively and have been in a relationship for 54 years. On Friday, the two were finally able to celebrate their nuptials in their own state, announcing their love and commitment to each other publicly and legally.
There is a surprisingly large and visible LGBT community in Cambodia. The iconic nightclub Heart of Darkness has become a gay club over the last few years and is very popular with locals. Blue Chilli is a gay bar here which has a drag show several nights a week which is always well attended. Many of my Khmer friends have reacted on Facebook to the Supreme Court ruling by adding rainbows their profile pictures. It seems they are generally a very accepting country.
There is still a long way to go in many other countries, particularly those in the Middle East, before marriage equality is a worldwide right. However, I think the USA’s ruling will have a positive influence on other nations.