…As a gay conservative, I’ve always been conflicted about the issue of gay marriage. I guess it is because my political and moral philosophies are not dictated by the desire to be loved by the president or the federal government. I believe that my rights as an American citizen come from my Creator, not Barack Obama, John Roberts or Nancy Pelosi. But the reaction from most gay liberals today to theoverturning of the Defense of Marriage Act and reversing the California voters’ decision in Proposition 8 has been the opposite. The gay political class is celebrating Big Government waving its haughty approval like King George III waving his hand over his colonies.
So for those of my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters who needed the federal government’s emotional approval of their relationship: Congratulations. I just hope all gay and lesbian Americans take a moment to stop and thank Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush for nominating Justices Kennedy and Roberts so the Clinton era of discrimination could come to an end Wednesday…
What Bruce got wrong in the above [excellent] article is that the will of the people has not been overturned… and as a gay man who loves our Constitution, he should fight for the will of the people and allow this change to come legally… as he has in the past.
…But that means Prop 8 is still the law in California. Section 3.5 of the California Constitution specifically commands:
An administrative agency … has no power:
(a) To declare a statute unenforceable, or refuse to enforce a statute, on the basis of it being unconstitutional unless an appellate court has made a determination that such statute is unconstitutional;
(b) To declare a statute unconstitutional;
(c) To declare a statute unenforceable, or to refuse to enforce a statute on the basis that federal law or federal regulations prohibit the enforcement of such statute unless an appellate court has made a determination that the enforcement of such statute is prohibited by federal law or federal regulations.
As of today, there is no appellate opinion (meaning an opinion issued by a court of appeals) against Prop 8. The Supreme Court refused to issue one, and threw out the only other one (the Ninth Circuit’s). There is only a trial court opinion. So every agency in California is legally bound to regard Prop 8 as binding law….
Liberals, apparently, are happy with 9th Circuit acting unConstitutionally? You see, a healthy court — and the 9th Circuit is NOT healthy — should not have gotten involved, at least according to SCOTUS. But judicial activism is the 9th Circuits game, and the Supe’s (SCOTUS) rightly stayed out of it.
Erwin Chemerinsky ~ is the founding Dean and Distinguished Professor of Law, and Raymond Pryke Professor of First Amendment Law, at the University of California, Irvine School of Law, with a joint appointment in Political Science.
Dr. John C. Eastman ~ is the Henry Salvatori Professor of Law & Community Service at Chapman University School of Law, and also served as the School’s Dean from June 2007 to January 2010, when he stepped down to pursue a bid for California Attorney General. He is the Founding Director of the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence, a public interest law firm affiliated with the Claremont Institute.
The decision is really the best possible outcome we could of hoped for in regards to Proposition eight. Why? Because Prop 8 is still law and it will properly ascend back up the chain of legal ladder rungs when an attorney general refuses to marry same-sex couples according to state law.
The DOMA strengthened state-power in deciding what marriage is — as the constitution says. So the states that have defined marriage as between man-and-woman have less to fear. Mind you, the DOMA ruling will hit some snags, I explain;
But there are major inconsistencies that will need to head back to court to be smoothed out. For instance, if a couple is married in New York, and then moves to a state that doesn’t recognize SSM… Federal benefits do or do not apply? The state is not required to provide be benefits, and DOMA does not change this. A point mentioned in passing by doc Eastman is will the Feds have to confer benefits to all persons in a polygamous marriage if a state plays this? [Also, religious freedom will be front and center... more on this below]
So it is a win on the SCOTUS level… a
loss [strike that earlier statement] win to voters rights on the lower level. Because, as the Breitbart article showed above, as well as the audio of Constitutional professor/Dean, John Eastman, explained — state powers were increased. Which brings us back to prop 8 and what the court[s] said/did:
(AP) ….The high court itself said nothing about the validity of gay marriage bans in California and roughly three dozen other states.
The outcome was not along ideological lines.
Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Antonin Scalia.
“We have no authority to decide this case on the merits, and neither did the 9th Circuit,” Roberts said, referring to the federal appeals court that also struck down Proposition 8….
As I pointed out, Prop 8 does not go by-by. There are nuances that will not be felt for a few days… but I will quickly explain what I understand:
In the California’s constitution, the government *HAS TO* uphold a proposition (again, by law) until the prop is said to be unconstitutional by an upper court. The Supe’s said they had no jurisdiction, and neither did the 9th circuit. The 9th vacated their position, and the ruling falls back down to the local judges ruling.
Which means — I believe — that the judges ruling is only effective for the two couples suing, or that particular district?
So what will happen?
Jerry Brown has ordered — unlawfully mind you, because prop 8 is still legal (Camilla Harris also misunderstands California’s Constitution) — all 58 districts to start performing SSM. All it will take is one conservative county/attorney general to say no… and the case will again rise up to the echelons of SCOTUS (which has been making some good choices as of late). Except this time it will be in the Courts Jurisdiction because you will have a defense and a prosecution on its rise, which the original case did not.
In-other-words, as Dr. Eastman points out, seeing if Jerry brown and the Attorney General, Camilla Harris, follow state law is really more important than the Same-Sex Marriage debate!
Another aspect of this is the affect DOMA will have on religion, freedom of choice, and the like. Already, even in the Supreme Court, there are ad-hominem attacks and rhetoric that is itself bigoted and intolerant.
(National Journal) …In a ripping dissent, Scalia says that Justice Anthony Kennedy and his colleagues in the majority have resorted to calling opponents of gay marriage “enemies of the human race.” Despite this being the first time in human history, gender and marriage (as being between man and woman) being challenged… we are[!?] enemies of the human race? Sick!
But to defend traditional marriage is not to condemn, demean, or humiliate those who would prefer other arrangements, any more than to defend the Constitution of the United States is to condemn, demean, or humiliate other constitutions. To hurl such accusations so casually demeans this institution. In the majority’s judgment, any resistance to its holding is beyond the pale of reasoned disagreement. To question its high-handed invalidation of a presumptively valid statute is to act (the majority is sure) with the purpose to “disparage,” “injure,” “degrade,” “demean,” and “humiliate” our fellow human beings, our fellow citizens, who are homo- sexual. All that, simply for supporting an Act that did no more than codify an aspect of marriage that had been unquestioned in our society for most of its existence— indeed, had been unquestioned in virtually all societies for virtually all of human history. It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race.
(See “Deck O Race-Cards“)
The new regulations will surely thrust more cases into SCOTUS and we will finally tilt one-way or the other — by this I mean will the American people understand the clear enumerated protection of religious practice, belief in the 1st Amendment? or a hitherto unknown “right-to-marry” for same-sex couples hiding between the lines in the Constitution. The two cannot co-exist in the end.
…In the Washington Post, Timothy Broglio, archbishop for the Military Services, USA, wrote:
I remain confident that people of this great country, no matter the consequences, will continue to promote and defend the good and the truth of marriage as the union of one man and one woman as husband and wife for life. Marriage remains what it has always been, regardless of what any government might say.
I likewise remain confident that the First Amendment constitutional guarantee of the “free exercise of religion” will forever ensure that no restrictions or limitations on the teaching of the Catholic faith will be placed on any Catholic priest or deacon in the armed forces. Furthermore, the Constitution guarantees that no endorsed minister will ever be compelled to perform a religious ceremony contrary to the dictates of his/her faith nor will today’s decision have any effect on the role and teaching ability of a priest or deacon in the pulpit, the classroom, the barracks or in the office.
This archdiocese remains resolved in the belief that no Catholic priest will ever be compelled to condone – even silently – same-sex “marriages.”
Michelle Bauman, assistant editor for Catholic News Agency and EWTN News, wrote Wednesday that while the Supreme Court did not claim “to have discovered a fundamental ‘right’ to marry,” or a point-blank “redefinition of marriage” that would be imposed on the entire country, overturning DOMA “will affect more than 1,000 regulations and legal provisions, and could have a sweeping impact on both the legal and cultural understanding of what marriage is.”
“In addition,” wrote Bauman, “since the federal government must acknowledge all state-recognized marriages, there will be increased pressure on the states to redefine marriage.”…
One of the failings in our current generation is the understanding behind the ethos of the founding documents of our nation. What the writers of these pieces of foundational guidelines said themselves, here is one example:
“…we have no government, armed with power, capable of contending with human passions, unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge and licentiousness would break the strongest cords of our Constitution, as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
John Adams, first (1789–1797) Vice President of the United States, and the second (1797–1801) President of the United States. Letter to the Officers of the First Brigade of the Third Division of the Militia of Massachusetts, 11 October 1798, in Revolutionary Services and Civil Life of General William Hull (New York, 1848), pp 265-6.
And we know what the Founder’s meant by the word “religion” from the debates about the First Amendment. We also know what a proper definition of a Republic means, which is what we live in… not a Democracy:
So, to conclude, while there is a lot to be optimistic about, one shouldn’t give up the fight for the ideological mind. Ours is a cause worthy of the best thinking on the matter. And a side note… debating issues. I was recently challenged with polygamy and the Bible. Christians contort for no reason over the topic. A topic meant to take your eye off the ball:
Mountain Man said
The issue of polygamy is tangentially related because the same-sex marriage debate is nothing more than an open declaration of war on the traditional and historical institution of marriage.
I agree…. however, people miss the larger issue in talking to non-believers, as well as showing believers how to make an impact on culture.
Please allow me to explain.
The Judeo-Christian understanding (as well as some of the big thinkers via Greece, like Plato and Aeschines) teaches/taught that marriage should be between one-man and one woman — or in the least between male and female. But polygamy proves the point that relationships — even in their accepted form by pagan or fallen society — have always been “male/female.” no major world religious founder, great moral thinker, or political theorist of old ever advocated this union.
So, when I debate a non-Christian on the matter, I use the idea of polygamy to make the point that this current movement is radical in its core, or, extreme. While the other side paints us as extreme for defending the idea of even male-female conventions in relationships, you can show that they are the first to reject the thinking of wise men and all culture before this generation, and that [in fact] they are the ones acting extreme. Even to the point of trying to rid society of gender differences [male/female].
But as I see it, in the marriage debate, polygamy is evidence from history that the norm a) accepted gender differences, and b) relationships have always been male-female. It is an arrow in my quiver, not someone saying the Bible approves polygamy. While the Bible does not divinely inspire polygamy and slavery, etc, it shows as a history text AND as a Divinely inspired text that relationships are male/female. I do not need to explain verse-by-verse the issue…
…the other side is making my point.