SAN DIEGO (AP) -- U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy has acknowledged the controversy surrounding the recent ruling that granted gays and lesbians the right to marry across the nation and likened it to a case in which justices decided burning an American flag was protected free speech.
Kennedy told lawyers and judges at a conference in San Diego on Wednesday that public reaction in the 1989 flag-burning case -- also a 5-4 ruling in which he was a swing vote -- was highly critical. But he said the public began to see things differently in two or three months.
Kennedy said a lawyer from Ukiah, California, told him that his father, a German prisoner during World War II, was outraged by the flag-burning decision but came around after reading Kennedy's concurring opinion.
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