The public and TV networks’ reactions to two recent Supreme Court decisions, one invalidating Section 4 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and the other invalidating the Defense of Marriage Act, were noteworthy.One decision gave new rights to millions of Americans. The other decision will serve to limit the rights of millions of other Americans.
Both decisions were 5-4, but only about the Voting Rights Act decision did I hear the high court widely described as “bitterly divided.”
In the days after the Voting Rights Act decision, you might have thought that the high court had taken away the right to vote from African-Americans. Journalists gave plenty of attention to voices opposing the decision and arguing that the ruling would overturn all the progress of civil rights since the 1960s.
The media’s coverage of the DOMA decision, on the other hand, was almost euphoric, geared overwhelmingly toward those celebrating the decision.
This is not a perfect country, but it's clear that we celebrate as a people when rights are expanded, not taken away. We're kind of cool that way.
So conservatives might whine that the media wasn't "euphoric" when the rights of African American and Latino voters were effectively curtailed, but that's because Americans in general aren't assholes like them.
And conservatives might whine that the media didn't cry about the "bitterly divided" Supreme Court when the DOMA decision came down, but that's because everyone was too busy celebrating love—not just an American value, but a human one.
Funny that conservatives have a problem with that.