Supreme Court justices are a bit of a crapshoot. Take sitting Justice John Paul Stevens for instance. President Ford selected him as a moderate conservative, but Stevens ended up one of the most liberal and pro-LGBT justices on the bench. During his 35 years on the court, he treated the Constitution as a living, breathing document flexible enough to address modern-day disputes. He also took on the roles of active questioner during oral arguments and back room diplomat during deliberations. The 90-year-old justice announced his imminent retirement last week, and while LGBT liberals have begun wondering whom Obama will pick to replace him, five of Justice Stevens’ cases did much to lay the groundwork for the three upcoming queer legal battles. Let’s get heavy, and see how these five cases changed America’s gay rights landscape.