(AlterNet) — Chief Justice John Roberts has played the American public like a hand of cards this week. He rolled out of rulings gutting some of the most important civil rights laws of the past 50 years. But he quickly diverted attention to these assaults by holding back two same-sex marriage rulings until the term’s last day.

Everywhere, from ubiquitous Facebook posts, to cheers and hugs on the Court’s marbled steps, to The New York Times columns a day later, euphoria has surged for the ruling written by Justice Anthony Kennedy holding that the definition of marriage in the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. The other ruling, written by Roberts, allowed the marriages to resume in California.

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