*This post is part of ACSblog’s symposium on the consolidated marriage equality cases before the Supreme Court.
On April 28, I sat in the U.S. Supreme Court to watch Mary Bonauto argue for the freedom to marry for all same-sex couples across our nation. Her opening argument rang as true today as 12 years ago, when Mary won the Goodridge case, making Massachusetts the first marriage equality state:
"The intimate and committed relationships of same-sex couples, just like those of heterosexual couples, provide mutual support and are the foundation of family life in our society. If a legal commitment, responsible and protection that is marriage is off limits to gay people as a claim, the stain of unworthiness that follows on individuals and families contravenes the basic constitutional commitment to equal dignity.”
As the Executive Director of Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) where Mary has worked for 25 years, I was proud to witness Mary stand in front of the nine justices to argue for the equal dignity and humanity of LGBT people. Over the course of the argument, which included passionate and articulate performances by U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli and Doug Hallward-Driemeier (who argued the question of recognition of out-of-state marriages), the debate over our equal worth as citizens and as people never felt more substantial.