— I don’t understand what’s going on in Alabama.
— That’s okay. The people of Alabama don’t often understand what’s going on in Alabama. Nobody has ever quite understood what’s going on in Alabama. When Hernando de Soto first passed through the area, the Choctaw Indians who lived there are quoted as saying “Who the hell ARE these people. What the hell are they up to? We just don’t understand.”
— I mean this whole same-sex marriage thing. What’s up with that?
— Oh, right, that. Well, back in 2006 Alabama added a Sanctity of Marriage Amendment to their State Constitution.
— What’s a Sanctity of Marriage Amendment? What does it do?
— It said marriage was “a sacred covenant, solemnized between a man and a woman.” It basically told same-sex couples they could go fuck themselves.
— Yeah. Well, no…not literally. I mean, it’s only been about seven months…yeah, that’s right, months…that Alabama’s anti-sodomy law was finally kicked to the curb. Alabama law doesn’t much like gay folks. Back in 2002 the Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court thinks gay sex is icky. He wrote a legal opinion saying homosexuality was “a crime in Alabama, a crime against nature, an inherent evil, and an act so heinous that it defies one’s ability to describe it.”
— Lawdy. Defies one’s ability to describe it? It’s not really that hard to describe.
— Exactly. Anyway, a couple weeks ago a Federal Judge said the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment was unconstitutional, and Alabama couldn’t use it to deny a marriage license to same-sex couples.
— Oh, well that should settle it, right?
— Dude, c’mon. Alabama. The Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court told the federal court it could go fuck itself. Again, not literally. Icky, and all that.
— Can the Chief Justice of anyplace actually do that?
— Is that the same Chief Justice who wrote that earlier opinion?
— It surely is. He’s a yahoo named Roy Moore. He told the folks who issue marriages licenses at the county offices to ignore the federal court ruling. Told them they should refuse to issue licences to same-sex couples.
— They ought to kick that guy out of office.
— They actually did. Back in 2003. Kicked his ass right out of office.
— Because of the gay thing?
— Nope. It was another thing. Judge Moore had commissioned a two-and-a-half ton monument to the Ten Commandments, which he put in the central rotunda of the Alabama Supreme Court.
— That’s pretty much a violation of the separation of church and state, isn’t it?
— Pretty much.
— So what happened?
— Somebody sued. A federal judge said the monument had to be removed. Judge Moore told the judge to go fuck himself.
— Not literally.
— No, not literally. Anyway, Moore refused to remove the monument, and eventually an Alabama judiciary commission booted his ass out of office.
— But he’s back now? He’s the Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court again?
— Why? How?
— Dude, c’mon. Alabama.
— So what’s going to happen?
— Damned if I know. Some Alabama counties are issuing marriage license to same-sex couple, some are refusing to issue licences to same-sex couples, some have stopped issuing marriage licenses to everybody.
— That doesn’t make any sense, does it?
— That judge, Moore…he’s going to lose again, isn’t he? Eventually?
— Almost certainly. He might be able to drag this fuss out until later in the year when the U.S. Supreme Court issues a final ruling about same-sex marriage. But yeah, he’s almost certainly going to lose. Again.
— So he’s causing all this trouble and confusion because of some religious principle?
— That’s what he says. The Bible, and all that.
— But the Bible isn’t the law. The Ten Commandments aren’t the law.
— I mean, there’s all that coveting business. We’re pretty much free to covet whatever the hell we want in America, aren’t we?
— Pretty much.
— I mean, this is America. We’re all about coveting, aren’t we.
— Totally about the coveting.
— So why is all this happening?
— Dude, c’mon. Alabama.