Assuming you're old enough, can you remember where you were when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated? I can. I was 12 years old, living in Bath, England, in a working-class pre-fabricated house built by German prisoners of World War II. It was the day before the first episode of Doctor Who, another momentous eventalbeit in a different league.
While the black-and-white TV flickered in the corner of a sparsely furnished mid-century modern room, I was sitting behind a sofa reading a book; it could have been Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island, Alexandre Dumas' The Three Musketeers, Arthur Ransome's Swallows and Amazons, or some other swashbuckling adventure. For a limp-wristed nelly boy, I was quite butch in my book choices. Of course, there's nothing butch about reading books.
The news of Kennedy's assassination was broadcast in an emotionless British BBC voice, and I probably wouldn't have noticed if it hadn't been for my parents being shocked and upset by it. I didn't realize the implications of what I was hearing, but I do remember a pall of sadness descending upon the house.
The Stonewall Riots, another momentous historical event, was barely reported in any newspapers anywhere, but much later in life I discovered where I was on June 28, 1969, when the uprising occurred. I was at the Bath Festival of Blues on the Recreation Ground listening to Fleetwood Mac, John Mayall, Ten Years After, Led Zeppelin, the Nice and other musical giants of the 1960s. I had long hair and velvet flared pants, and I was high on LSD. The past is so embarrassing.
As I write this in my office in Cathedral City, California, I'm glowing, as I've just heard that "gay marriage" has been abolished and replaced by boring old everyday "marriage." As I jokingly noted on Facebook, "Now I can divorce my husband in all 50 states. Yay!"
I waited to write this Senior Moment until the SCOTUS decision was handed down. I wanted to capture my thoughts at this historical moment. What I feel is not joy or elation, but an overwhelming sense of relief, as if a weight has been lifted. This was heavy for us to carry all these years. I'm glad the majority of the Supremes remembered they're not deities in black frocks, but human, and humane, beings. Often, when wearing the drag of the authorities, individuals forget their humanity and act like bullies, e.g., certain police officers. It's a strange thing for an atheist to say, but what the Supremes did was the Christian thing to do. I'm sure their Jesus Christ would approve. The four dissenters are not worthy of my comments.
My thoughts now turn to the thousands of LGBTs and our friends who made this happen and to those who have passed away before we arrived at this day, from Henry Gerber to William B. Kelley, from Pearl Hart to Vernita Gray. Each and every one of us contributed to this special day. For is it not written in the Babble, the Book of Lady Gaga 6:9:
"Blessed are those who came out of the closet to their family and friends, for they shall be rewarded with joy and happiness; Blessed are those young LGBTs who stood up in the classroom and said, 'I Am What I Am,' for they have created a new world for themselves to live in; Blessed are the gays and street people who threw rocks at the 'PIGS' at Stonewall, for they have earned a place in our hearts forever; Blessed is the man who walked into his place of employment, swinging a purse and saying 'This is how it's going to be from now on,' for he shall be fabulous; Blessed are those lesbians who took an axe and smashed down the barriers between us and them; and Blessed are those who went to their first gay bar and woke up the next morning in bed with a stranger."
You have all contributed to this glorious day.
And to all those who threw a tantrum of epic proportions, you need to stop stamping your feet, threatening to divorce your spouse and set yourself on fire. It's petulant, it's childish and it's embarrassing to watch.