Why, you may ask, would a gay man who has never married or been in the position to father a child, care about marking the 35th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision? It’s very simple, really. Roe vs. Wade said that women have the right to control their own bodies and they are the ones who get to choose what happens to them. The government — the state of Texas in this case — had no standing to place themselves within one of the most intimate decisions a person can make. Thirty five years later, the ruling stands as a guide for those of us who seek to keep the government out of other intimate decisions, such as who we can marry and share the rights and responsibilities that ordinary citizens have as a matter of course.
But as hopeful as Roe vs. Wade is for those who believe in personal choice, be it reproductive or marriage, there are a lot of forces at work who would love nothing more than to federalize the morality they envision for the rest of the country. (Ironically, these are the same people who complain bitterly about government interference when it comes to things like an assault weapons ban or letting the blacks vote.) So acknowledging the anniversary of Roe v. Wade has to be tempered with the awareness that even if it has been settled law for nearly two generations, it will be challenged again and again by those who hate the idea that someone else is actually controlling their own life.