BALTIMORE, MD – Today, the Supreme Court delivered a historic victory for marriage equality, ruling 5 to 4 that the Constitution requires that states grant equal treatment to same-sex couples with respect to marriage and must recognize same-sex marriages performed outside of their state.
The NAACP has long advocated for marriage equality. In 2012, the NAACP Board of Directors voted to support marriage equality as a continuation of its steadfast commitment to equal protection under the law. The NAACP constitution states our objective to ensure the “political, education, social and economic equality” of all people. We support marriage equality consistent with equal protection under the law provided under the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution. To this end, we co-authored with the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc. an amicus brief for this case.
From Cornell William Brooks, NAACP President and CEO:
“The NAACP applauds the Supreme Court’s historic decision on marriage equality as it affirms that all Americans are created equal and entitled to certain unalienable rights. No one should be exempt from the promise of justice, fairness and equal protection under the law. Today gay and lesbian couples can stand beneath the canopy of the Constitution and clasp their hands in marriage in every state, as a matter of love and justice. In the continuum of historic Supreme Court decisions such as Brown v. the Board of Education and Loving v. Virginia, today’s ruling sets our country on a new course toward a more fair and more just America. When our National Board of Directors resolved to publicly endorse marriage equality in 2012, they did it because injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Advocating on behalf of marginalized communities is who we are. Discrimination has no place in our society. Justice is an American ideal that should be extended to every person and every community.”
From Rosemary Lytle, NAACP State Conference President:
"On this historic day, the NAACP Colorado Montana Wyoming State Conference stands with those who fight for freedom everywhere, applauding the U.S. Supreme Court decision today in Obergefell v. Hodges which reaffirms human dignity under law -- the Constitutional guarantee that every American has the right to marry the person they love. The NAACP State Conference rejoices with same-sex couples across our states as we welcome marriage equality as the law of the land -- and we thank the National Board of Directors for having the vision to make the affirmation of marriage equality as a civil right a mandate for NAACP freedom fighters more than three years ago. Even as we stand on the side of love today, we know that this -- like the early days when Loving v. Virginia affirmed the right of mixed race couples to marry -- is not the end of our work. The NAACP State Conference pledges to continue to tell the stories of, and to fight for the rights of diverse people, until there is acceptance not only in law and the courts, but in hearts and minds."
Thought Leader, Strategist, Change Agent, Lytle is a newspaper journalist turned NAACP Freedom Fighter and CO MT WY State Conference President. She was elected Chair of Midwest Region IV for the NAACP 105th Annual Convention. Rosemary first joined the organization at age 16 after winning an Essay Contest sponsored by the Gary Branch NAACP. For 8 years, she served as President of the NAACP Colorado Springs Branch. In December, she was appointed to the NAACP President & CEO Search Committee which selected Dr. Cornell William Brooks. Her hot topics: criminal justice reform -- including death penalty abolition & community re-entry for those previously incarcerated, labor & economic justice, climate action, ending the educational achievement gap, LGBTQ equality, health equity, voting rights, ending discrimination in all its forms.