When Alabama approved gay marriage, those fighting for gay rights saw it as a massive step in the right direction and hoped that other red states would follow suit. However when the Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, Roy Moore, threw up roadblocks in the way of gay marriage, people thought that the battle might be lost and that gay men and women wouldn’t be able to get married in Alabama court houses. Moore issued an edict that directed judges in Alabama to not hand out any marriage licenses to gay couples until the US Supreme Court had ruled whether or not it was constitutional. Moore’s argument was that Alabama state judges weren’t bound by a federal ruling that struck down Alabama’s ban of same-sex marriage that was handed down last month.
It turns out the US Supreme Court is standing by its previous statements and has demanded that Alabama probate judges start handing out marriage licenses to gay couples around the state who want to get married. The earlier ruling came from U.S. District Court Judge Callie Granade and she had ruled that Alabama’s prohibition was unconstitutional. However she also put her ruling on hold until Monday after which the whole of the US Supreme court, minus Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, decreed the Alabama’s ban was unconstitutional and that judges would have to begin handing out certificates to whichever couples wanted them.
Due to the decision of the Supreme Court, Alabama is now the 37th state in the United States of America to allow gay marriage. Local justices in the state had already been refusing Moore’s directive to not marry any same-sex couples before the official decision was made but having the backing of the Supreme Court means that everything is now legal and those judges who were holding out and now required to marry anyone who asks, regardless of gender and orientation. This is a big blow for equal rights (Alabama is heavily conservative and highly religious) and a red state like Alabama legalizing gay marriage is sure to bring hope and morale to those fighting for the same treatment in other states.
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