UPDATED: See below.
Yesterday, there was a lot of grandstanding by right-leaning Republicans, most of whom denounced the Supreme Court’s rulings in favor of marriage equality. (Video clip posted below.) By and large, they ranted and railed about “unelected judges” who overrode the “will of the people”. I did not hear any of these people complain about the unelected judges who gutted the Voting Rights Act a day earlier, but perhaps I’m just really good at tuning them out.
Some of these asshats and their ancestors made similar arguments in the aftermath of Brown v. Board of Education, which no one on the right seems willing to remember. How many times must we say it, y’all? It’s simply unfair for the majority to determine the rights of the minority, because the minority will always be short-changed.
And keep in mind: these complaints are coming from the same white, well-heeled politicians who were trampled at voting booths last November and who vowed to make better inroads with minority communities. For their parents, African Americans were the target; for them, it’s gays, lesbians, and the transgendered. Apple, meet tree.
But here’s the important thing: despite yesterday’s highly public, blustery, doom-and-gloom breast-beating, I have a hunch that many Republicans are quietly cheering the SCOTUS rulings. As I’ve said before, the decisions give LGBT foes the opportunity to change their opinions while saving face.
As dumb as some members of the GOP may appear*, the majority are smart enough to see the writing on the wall. They know that same-sex marriage is coming to their (red)neck of the woods, like it or not. Some diehards will invariably keep fighting, but most understand that the battle is lost and want to move on to other things.
Yesterday’s SCOTUS rulings give those politicians an out. They can now say, “The issue of same-sex marriage is decided for now. We want to focus on more pressing matters, like disenfranchising black voters and giving pre-schoolers the right to bear firearms.” In short, Wednesday’s decisions let them put the issue of marriage equality behind them.
Of course, I could be wrong. Capitol Hill wingnuts have voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act 37 times, even though it was upheld by the Supreme Court. And some dumbass from Kansas has already introduced an amendment to the U.S. constitution to prevent same-sex marriage nationwide.
But I think I’m right on this.
*Please note that idiocy is not limited to the GOP. Case in point: Ruben Diaz.
UPDATE: When asked about the twin SCOTUS rulings, John Boehner was all, like, “Yeah, you know, whatever.” He went on to say, “The court’s made its decision…. I have no plans at this point in terms of how the House would move ahead on this.” Not that I told you so, but.
And please note, this is the same weepy, creepy John Boehner who authorized spending $2.3 million in taxpayer money to keep the DOMA case going. I suppose it’s good that he did, because we received a real SCOTUS ruling and a hefty injection of schadenfreude all at the same time. But I can’t help wondering if America should ask for a refund.