Alabama, named among the least likely states ever to legalize same-sex marriage, jumps off of that list entirely as couples across the state line up for their legally recognized marriages.
Southern District Court Judge Callie Granade ruled in January that Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage on 14th Amendment grounds, but put a hold on her ruling until today to give the state time to appeal. Attorney General Luther Strange asked the U.S. Supreme Court to extend the ban indefinitely until the issue was settled on a national level, but early this morning the court told him to suck it, and weddings are happening already.
Despite orders from Chief Justice Roy Moore — he who became infamous after refusing to remove a monument to the Ten Commandments that he commissioned for the state judicial building — that probate judges not issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, counties are doing so, with new forms that amend “bride” and “groom” to “first listed spouse” and “second listed spouse.”
Many counties throughout the state have refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses, or any marriage licenses, some citing confusion over Moore’s order. But couples lined up in Montgomery and Birmingham have camped out, gone into courthouses, and come out married — some after a considerable wait in line with dozens of other couples. In Huntsville, “Wedding Week” kicks off with an ongoing string of weddings in Big Spring Park East, with police on hand to see to the safety of the three dozen expected couples and to facilitate traffic flow to the park from the courthouse across the street. In Birmingham, marriages are being performed on a first-come, first-served basis in Linn Park, next to the Jefferson County courthouse. Cupcakes are provided.
Congratulations to all of Alabama’s newest newlyweds.