Supreme Court

When a San Francisco federal judge ruled the ban on same –sex marriage (enumerated by California’s Proposition 8) unconstitutional it was a big victory for freedom in the United States. No longer will the issue be one that it is determined on a state by state basis, but the issue will eventually be enshrined in federal law pending the eventual Supreme Court decision.

The current ruling will be appealed in the 9th Circuit, but regardless of the outcome you can be assured this case will be heard by the highest court in the land. The question is – ‘What will be their verdict?’ Proposition 8, which accumulated 52.3% of the vote, was deemed unconstitutional because of its infringement on the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th amendment.

The reality is that there is no legitimate argument that outlines why same-sex marriage should be banned. No one can argue with a straight face that it will diminish the sanctity of marriage. The divorce rate among Americans is estimated to be between 40% - 50%, so much for the sanctity.

If anyone thinks that homosexual marriage is wrong and they want to teach that to their kids, they are free to do so. Bigotry happens to be quite legal in the United States. Those that argue that legitimizing such behavior is tearing apart the moral fabric of America seem to be quite selective. There are a lot of things that an individual can disagree with but should still be happy that are legal, maybe some of the things you do are viewed as appalling by others. Pornography, excessive drinking, and promiscuity (just to name a few) may be deemed as immoral by many “social conservatives” but this does not mean they should be illegal. No one is forcing anyone to live their lives any certain way or to even deem any particular behavior as appropriate. Nevertheless, the government should stay out of the business of regulating personal behavior. As long as it does not infringe on anyone else’s liberty it should not be regulated. If you want to live in a morally restrictive society you should move to Saudi Arabia.

The bottom line is that homosexual marriage will not affect heterosexual couples or marriage in anyway. Personally, I do not understand why marriage is a government sanctioned activity. If the government wants to tax people on the basis of living arrangements then so be it, but base it on those arrangements not some contrived institution termed marriage. However, that is the way society works, and if it is going to work in such a manner it must be viewed as a violation of equal protection to allow heterosexual marriage and disallow same-sex marriage.

While sifting through the 136 page ruling, the following ten points seemed to capture the bulk of U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn Walker’s argument for overturning Proposition 8, the law which banned same-sex marriage.

1. "Individuals do not generally choose their sexual orientation. No credible evidence supports a finding that an individual may, through conscious decision, therapeutic intervention or any other method, change his or her sexual orientation."

2. "California has no interest in asking gays and lesbians to change their sexual orientation or in reducing the number of gays and lesbians in California."

3. "Same-sex couples are identical to opposite-sex couples in the characteristics relevant to the ability to form successful marital unions. Like opposite-sex couples, same-sex couples have happy, satisfying relationships and form deep emotional bonds and strong commitments to their partners."

4. "Marrying a person of the opposite sex is an unrealistic option for gay and lesbian individuals."

5. "The availability of domestic partnership does not provide gays and lesbians with a status equivalent to marriage because the cultural meaning of marriage and its associated benefits are intentionally withheld from same-sex couples in domestic partnerships."

6. "Permitting same-sex couples to marry will not affect the number of opposite-sex couples who marry, divorce, cohabit, have children outside of marriage or otherwise affect the stability of opposite-sex marriages."

7. "Proposition 8 places the force of law behind stigmas against gays and lesbians, including: gays and lesbians do not have intimate relationships similar to heterosexual couples; gays and lesbians are not as good as heterosexuals; and gay and lesbian relationships do not deserve the full recognition of society."

8. "Proposition 8 increases costs and decreases wealth for same sex couples because of increased tax burdens, decreased availability of health insurance and higher transactions costs to secure rights and obligations typically associated with marriage."

9. "Proposition 8 singles out gays and lesbians and legitimates their unequal treatment. Proposition 8 perpetuates the stereotype that gays and lesbians are incapable of forming long-term loving relationships and that gays and lesbians are not good parents."

10. "The gender of a child's parent is not a factor in a child's adjustment. The sexual orientation of an individual does not determine whether that individual can be a good parent. Children raised by gay or lesbian parents are as likely as children raised by heterosexual parents to be healthy, successful and well-adjusted."

James Edstrom's Note: Why would anyone care if someone gay got married anyway. Gay couples have the right to be just as miserable as straight couples. This law reminds me of black and white segregation. With this kind of thinking, we should have gay bathrooms and straight bathrooms. We should have gay restaurants and straight restaurants. Why these straight people are so scared to let gay people marry is beyond me. I think marriage in the straight society is a dying system anyway. Being in the gay business myself for so many years, I have noticed that gay couples stay together for much longer if not forever, and they make better parents. So let everyone be miserable together!