Wrong Way

OK, that’s enough.

Don’t make me come over there and smack you.

I understand you’re excited and all. The Supreme Court has been amazing lately. Friday’s decision on marriage equality is worth celebrating, and so are several others from this session. I don’t want to completely derail this rant, so I’ll leave it to you all to decide which other rulings I’m talking about.

Agreed, marriage equality was the biggie, and it’s well worth celebrating.

But I’m seeing an unfortunate trend. Far too many of the public responses to the ruling could be summarized as “Neener, neener, neener!” or “You’re smelly and your mommy dresses you funny.”

Cut it out.

Celebrate, yes, but do it responsibly. (Yes, this post is the equivalent of a “Don’t text while driving” PSA.)

Stop with the posts suggesting that the dissenting justices will be forced to marry each other. Knock off the tweets recommending that members of [insert religion here] will be required to perform same-sex marriages “like it or not”. And above all, quick sending death threats to anyone who doesn’t agree that the ruling is a step in the right direction.

I’m not saying this because I’m worried about people’s feelings being hurt. Nor am I taking a moral stand. This is all tactics.

The fight for equality under the law isn’t over.

We’ve won one battle here, no question. But there’s still a lot of war left. Just ask anyone who’s been denied housing, not gotten a job (or been paid less than others doing the same job), or–lest we forget–been killed because of their orientation, gender, or color.

Taunting your opponent is not a good idea. It’s not going to “force him to make a mistake”. It’s going to piss him off.

There’s a reason why sports teams at all levels try to keep their players from saying things like “[Next week’s opponent] are a bunch of wimps who don’t have a chance,” “[Opposing player] is incompetent,” or “We’re going to win because God hates [opponent].”

The reason is simple: when those statements appear in the press, coaches use them to motivate their team.

Don’t give the forces of intolerance any ammunition. Take the ammunition they give you, go out there, and kick their asses.