I feel compelled to say that my husband and I were already recognized as a legitimate couple in our community, a community composed of our closest friends, our closest relatives, our children, our grandchildren, the people we each worked with. None of this has changed. On the day that we married, everybody on the beach with us knew that we had been together a very long time, even if they all didn’t know how many years it had been. They knew we had come through very hard times together—both in his life and in mine—and also very good times, and that we were going to make it. We were recognized as a legitimate couple.
The people who did not recognize us as a legitimate couple before that beautiful day on the beach were the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the United States of America. And what happened on Race Point Beach, the major thing that happened on Race Point Beach, was that the governments of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and of the United States of America demonstrated that they had come around and were going to respect us too.
To whom the rest of us, C and I, and all our kin and all our friends from Boston and Somerville and from the West Coast and the Midwest and the South, who gathered with us on Race Point Beach under an absolutely cloudless sky, could say, “Welcome!”