Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon made history – again – at 5:07 p.m. Monday [16th June] when they were declared “spouses for life.”
At that moment, standing next to each other in the mayor’s office in San Francisco City Hall in front of cheering friends and relatives, the couple of 55 years became the first same-sex newlyweds in San Francisco and among the first in California under a new right bestowed by the state Supreme Court.
“And it feels great,” said Lyon, 83. (link)
These days, unless of course you’re in the military, or you’re a teenager still at school, or financially dependent on homophobic parents, most Americans can come out about their sexual orientation in reasonable certainty that while some people may be stupid and rude enough to publicly disapprove, no one is likely to kill them over it.
When Del and Phyllis met, 55 years ago, their love was legally regarded as a illness or a disability: a feeling that they were supposed to be ashamed of or want to be “cured” of.
That things have changed so much in 55 years is due, in part, to the courage and hard work and sheer admirable stubborness of these two women, and many others.
Thank you, Del and Phyllis.
There haven’t been very many days like these around the world, where suddenly couples who had been denied the right to be married may at last be legally wed.
“A thousand welcomes to you with your marriage kerchief, may you be healthy all your days. May you be blessed with long life and peace, may you grow old with goodness, and with riches.”
For Del and Phyllis, this wedding blessing is already so: they’ve lived their lives to grow old with goodness, long life, and peace.
But there’s another traditional blessing, even more appropriate for this day:
May those who love us, love us.
And those who don’t love us,
May God turn their hearts;
And if He doesn’t turn their hearts,
May He turn their ankles,
So we will know them by their limping.
Don’t let the anti-marriage activists try to redefine marriage for everyone by eliminating from marriage the love, respect, devotion and joy that Del and Phyllis feel for each other, and cutting marriage down to a card figure of any man or any woman.