Marriage equality is the law across the U.S., according to the Supreme Court. However, on Sunday’s Last Week Tonight John Oliver noted that there are still plenty of ways in this country to “ruin a gay honeymoon.” That’s because while discriminating against same sex unions themselves is no longer legal, in many states it is still legal to discriminate against gay people when it comes to housing or employment, and photos of a same-sex marriage could result in someone losing their job. In Oliver’s opinion the only reason someone should be fired after their wedding is if their theme was “stolen office supplies.”
The fact that discrimination based on sexual orientation is legal in various cases in 31 states may surprise people, said Oliver, showing a poll that said 71% of Americans thought employment discrimination was illegal. “That’s optimistic, but wrong,” noted Oliver. “Like thinking wearing vertical stripes are flattering or making your first condom purchase ‘magnum.’”
Oliver said extending civil rights to gay people should not solely be the provenance of the states, because while some ensure civil rights for all, other states adamantly do not. For example, Arkansas recently passed what Oliver described as an “anti-anti-discrimination” bill to prevent any city or county within the state to extend civil rights to gay people.
To test the water for a federal law banning discrimination based on sexual orientation, Oliver’s team reached out to all the presidential candidates but only heard back from four, although that included Rand Paul’s campaign who answered “We’ll pass. Thanks.”