Chapter 17: Set Course for the Alpha Quadrant

For years, national leaders told Josh Boschee that North Dakota had no place in the marriage equality movement. “It’s not where the battlefield is,” they told him. It was just conventional wisdom that his state would never be a player, and he wouldn’t have a role.

And so he was resigned to sitting the fight out. “We’re just going to hope and pray that the other states take care of it for us,” he said.

But as one state after another won the freedom to marry, the conventional wisdom made less and less sense. And he saw the harm of waiting on the sidelines — for example, his neighbors, Celeste and Amber, were expecting a third child in a few weeks but couldn’t appear together on their own kids’ birth certificates.

Sure, the national groups said North Dakota needed to wait. But the more he thought about it, the more he realized: “You know what? We don't need the national groups. We'll just do it on our own.”

Over the course of just a few decades, marriage had gone from an impossible joke to an attainable goal, even in the most unlikely of states.

It was a messy process, unpredictable and littered with setbacks. But it was also a process of growth, of improvement, of coming together for the betterment of all involved.

Just like marriage itself. 

Parisian Kevin MacLeod ( 
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