If you haven’t already left your computer for the Labor Day weekend, start your holiday off right with this beautiful reminder of the goodness in the world:
Meg Liffick and Joe Ball, a couple from Indianapolis, had their wedding last Saturday in Indiana. The Midwestern state, like the majority of states in America, does not formally recognize the relationships of same-sex couples in any way. This clearly didn’t sit well with Liffick and Ball, so they decided to use a cherished wedding tradition to both call attention to the injustice of marriage discrimination and honor the loving, committed relationships of their LGBT friends. John Green, a popular novelist and friend of the couple, described their poignant gesture in a post on his tumblr (fair warning – it made this guy bawl like a baby):
When it came time for the couple’s traditional first dance, Joe read prepared remarks explaining that instead of dancing together, they wanted to open the dance floor to their gay and lesbian friends who are still legally denied the right to marry.
This was a large and very diverse wedding in a state that doesn’t even recognize same-sex civil unions, let alone marriage. And yet the ovation that these people received while dancing to The Beach Boys’ “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” was like nothing I’ve ever heard at any wedding. If there were dry eyes, I didn’t see any.
Change is coming.
Don’t even bother wiping the tears out of your eyes, though, until you take a look at the snapshot Green took of that dance (below). You’ll see four beautiful gay and lesbian couples, whom Liffick and Ball chose to publicly honor on their own wedding day by recognizing, affirming, and embracing their friends’ love for each other, even when their state (and maybe even their church) refuses to do so.
As Mister Rogers used to sing when I was small, there are many ways to say “I love you,” but in my view, this one is particularly touching.