Marveling over how quickly American society and government have moved on marriage equality is nothing new, but as 2013 comes to a close, it's worth taking a moment to marvel all over again. Because, damn, did we come a long way in 2013. When the year began, marriage equality was the law in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire, the District of Columbia, New York, Maine, Maryland, and Washington. That's nine states and the District of Columbia. Today, it's 18, with Rhode Island, Delaware, Minnesota, California, New Jersey, Hawaii, Illinois, New Mexico, and Utah (for now) having joined in. What's more, the Supreme Court struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act, so that those marriages are more equal at the federal level, with some effects of that decision felt even in states that have banned equal marriage. That's a lot to celebrate, as we'll do (in pictures!) below the fold.
Rhode Island, April 24, brought a reminder that this progress came too late for many:
Lise Iwon (R) holds a picture of her late partner of 32 years Peg Laurence during a Marriage Equality Act signing at the State House in Providence, Rhode Island, May 2, 2013.
On May 7, marriage equality was signed into law in Delaware
. Maybe we should consider it a milestone of sorts that it happened so quietly I couldn't find any related pictures at the places Daily Kos gets images.
Minnesota May 14:
And Minneapolis lit up in celebration.
On June 26, the Supreme Court struck down
part of the Defense of Marriage Act:
Michael Knaapen (L) and his husband John Becker, both of Wisconsin, react to the 5-4 ruling striking down as unconstitutional the Defense of Marriage Act at the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington.
And California's Proposition 8
People celebrate, after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on California's Proposition 8 and the federal Defense of Marriage Act, on the steps of the city hall in San Francisco, California.
, October 21:
Jenelle Torres (C) embraces spouse Lydia Torres after being wed by Newark Mayor Cory Booker in Newark, New Jersey, October 21, 2013.
, November 13:
Same sex marriage supporters Lance Namihara (L), Calvin Marquez (C) and Aleeciya Parker rally at the Hawaii State Capital as the State Legislature convenes for the third and final vote on allowing same sex marriage to be legal in the state of Hawaii.
, November 20:
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn holds up the state's newly signed marriage equality law.
, December 19:
, December 21. The state is appealing the judge's decision striking down Utah's same-sex marriage ban, so we'll see how this goes. But in the mean time, some couples have married. In Utah. Utah!
May the new year bring more steps on the road to equality.