LOVE IS LOVE
This morning the Supreme Court declared that same sex couples have a right to marry anywhere in the United States.
“This ruling is a victory for Jim Obergefell and the other plaintiffs in the case. It’s a victory for gay and lesbian couples who have fought so long for their basic civil rights. It’s a victory for their children, whose families will now be recognized as equal to any other. It’s a victory for the allies and friends and supporters, who spent years even decades working and praying for change to come. This ruling is a victory for America,” the president said. “This decision affirms what millions of Americans already believe in their hearts: when all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free.”
Justice Anthony Kennedy, who authored today’s ruling legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States, is sometimes made fun of for his notoriously purple prose. But today he managed to close his opinion with one of the most beautiful passages you’ll likely read in a court case.
“Dr. Maya Angelou is one of the most renowned and influential voices of our time. Dr. Angelou is a celebrated poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist.
Born, Marguerite Ann Johnson on April 4th, 1928, in St. Louis, Missouri, Dr. Angelou was raised in St. Louis and Stamps, Arkansas. In Stamps, Dr. Angelou experienced the brutality of racial discrimination, but she also absorbed the unshakable faith and values of traditional African-American family, community, and culture.
As a teenager, Dr. Angelou’s love for the arts won her a scholarship to study dance and drama at San Francisco’s Labor School. At 14, she dropped out to become San Francisco’s first African-American female cable car conductor. She later finished high school, giving birth to her son, Guy, a few weeks after graduation. As a young single mother, she supported her son by working as a waitress and cook, however her passion for music, dance, performance, and poetry would soon take center stage.
In 1954 and 1955, Dr. Angelou toured Europe with a production of the opera Porgy and Bess. She studied modern dance with Martha Graham, danced with Alvin Ailey on television variety shows and, in 1957, recorded her first album, Calypso Lady. In 1958, she moved to New York, where she joined the Harlem Writers Guild, acted in the historic Off-Broadway production of Jean Genet’s The Blacks and wrote and performed Cabaret for Freedom.
In 1960, Dr. Angelou moved to Cairo, Egypt where she served as editor of the English language weekly The Arab Observer. The next year, she moved to Ghana where she taught at the University of Ghana’s School of Music and Drama, worked as feature editor for The African Review and wrote for The Ghanaian Times.
With the guidance of her friend, the novelist James Baldwin, she began work on the book that would become I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Published in 1970, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was published to international acclaim and enormous popular success. The list of her published verse, non-fiction, and fiction now includes more than 30 bestselling titles”.
The Heart of a Woman
A Song Flung up to Heaven
I Know Why the Bird Caged Sing
All God Children Need Traveling Shoes
I Shall Not Be Moved (Poems)
Letter To My Daughter