Here’s some news ripe for the 2016 pickings courtesy of the Supreme Court. In rulings Wednesday the court finally waded into the same-sex marriage arena by striking down the Federal Defense of Marriage Act and making a less-groundbreaking technical ruling California’s proposition 8.

Report from the AP:

The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits.

The other was a technical ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court’s declaration that California’s Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. That outcome probably will allow state officials to order the resumption of same-sex weddings in the nation’s most populous state in about a month.

In neither case did the court make a sweeping statement, either in favor of or against same-sex marriage.

Clearly this may help mobilize supporters of traditional marriage but I’d bet the fervor will be just as matched on the side of advancing same-sex marriage as well.

15 COMMENTS

  1. I expected the first ruling. They should have called it the Defense of Marriage Act for Social Structure, so they could call it “DOMASS.” It was a total overreach by the feds to stifle an obvious movement in the states.

    But the California ruling surprised me. I would have expected them to say that the PEOPLE of the State had spoken, and it was up to the PEOPLE to rescind it–and they would have. That seems like the proper action.

    My guess is that the conservative appointees felt that if Califronia had to vote on the subject again, it would be overwhelmingly defeated, but in the process, bringing out a huge liberal vote that would have decided unrelated issues.

    Roberts seems to have two priorities: One, to push through Cheney rulings, whenever possible, but also, two, to be seen as on the right side of history. If there is a “movement” afoot among the public, the Constitution be damned. That is, a judicial activist, but on issues he things are popular: gay marriage is a done deal, but the public is turning against affirmative action, and doesn’t care about voting rights issues anymore.

    “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” you just need Roberts.

  2. Al: I’m glad the guy is dressed like a clown. I’d hate to have anyone take him seriously.

    I happen to feel that Israel has destroyed our foreign policy credibility, and that the Jewish Lobby has made a mockery of our internal politics, but to claim that Jews want YOU to be a homo is just too ludicrous.

  3. Thank you for removing all doubt about your insensitive and callous nature.
    Judging by your ignorant ad-hominem, I can tell with 100% certainty that you are not a jew.
    Clearly you have no first-hand experience to counter his claims.
    If you listened carefully, he does mention that he was formerly a jew who is now a monastic under the orthodox church.
    That means he has more insight into the jewish people and the inner workings of their tight-knit community than your average gentile.
    And if you watch his other video clips, you will learn that he shares your feelings about the jews as well.
    Just make sure to listen with your ears and not your eyes.

    • Al: Oy. You do an ad hominem attack in response?

      I have no reason to watch the guy’s other videos. This is the one you tried to use regarding gay marriage, and it didn’t take long to realize the guy is a putz (used advisedly). He used a clearly facetious video to “prove” that Jews are against gay marriage, when it REALLY is just an exhortation for Jews to marry Jews–just as I was exhorted as a Catholic to marry ONLY a Catholic. Of COURSE he’s going to hope that the next generation retains its faith, and the easiest way to do it is to pair up Jews. I assume you do not really believe that the rabbi is serious in saying you should have your legs broken if you try marrying outside the faith?!

      When i was a kid, we used to hate converts, because they were the most self-righteous, petty, pompous twits we knew. And so is this guy.

      But I don’t understand your “insensitive” and “callous” complaint, when I merely ridiculed a meshugeneh who is a silly caricature of someone being callous and insensitive.

        • Al: OK, well, to begin with. The guy looks even more like a clown in this video. I will defend a person’s right to look like an idiot if he wants to. It’s anybody’s right. But if you are seriously trying to get a point across, you don’t put on a dress and a goofy hat, with giant, ludicrous crosses; you don’t sport a big fluffy Santa Claus beard–and hair like Larry of the Stooges, and you don’t dance around, use a ridiculous lilting voice, and props like the silly “clicker,” all the while standing in the middle of a forest.

          When I was in college, I was praised by an instructor, who said that inexperienced students usually don’t write about serious topics without becoming supercilious. This guy is SUPER silly-ous. Not to mention condescending, and so blatantly antisemitic that a speech like this would probably be illegal in Germany.

          Let me step back a minute for my own views. The REASON doma was struck down is that it was unfair to non-married couples. There are thousands of benefits we give to certain couples and not others. Second, being gay is not a “choice.” It’s how people are born. So getting the benefits of marriage were barred from them. My solution would have been to create a “domestic partnership” status that would allow long-term couples to get the benefits of being married. After all, hetero couples don’t have to “get” married to “be” married–since there is “common law marriage.” Trouble is, the opponents of gay marriage blocked the path.

          John Kennedy said, “Those who make peaceful change impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” In this case, by blocking civil unions, which would have given the rights of marriage without the term “marriage,” the DOMA people didn’t stop gay marriage, they made it inevitable.

          At this point, I think it’s up to churches to come up with a term for being “married in the eyes of God.” Something like, “Sanctified,” which would signify that the couple is not just looking for bennies, but they feel that they are living a sacrament.

          Anyway, I sat through the whole 7+ minutes of the video you suggested, and felt like it said nothing. It did point out the actors and what they did to bring about the downfall of DOMA. But people on the other side would have given you the same timeline (except without the hatred and silliness).

          If I were in favor of gay marriage, I would direct EVERYONE to watch this guy, since he is such a clown, and makes the anti-gay marriage argument seem so petty and ridiculous. And that brings me to a question: Is it possible this guy was hired by the other side??

  4. So for the 3rd time the people of California who have petitioned their government, followed constitutional procedures and twice amended their constitution for something specific, have had their government overturn their decision. What is a people to do when a government ‘of the people’ does not serve ‘the people’? Yes we are a nation of laws that follows the rule of law, but the laws which are on the books are decided by the values of the people, not the values of the government. What is a people to do?

    Both of the things which passed (DOMA and Proposition 8) were done so following the legal democratic process and the clear will of the people. I remember the time period in which both of these were passed. Similar to today, those in the gay community (or agree with its normalcy), who could not stand to have someone else call them abnormal, were using every legal technicality they could to try and force broad acceptance of their life choice. There was a nation-wide movement, but it was a movement (unlike the civil rights movement) where the philosophy/beliefs of a small portion of the society were being pushed onto the broader society, and broader society responded.

    Proposition 8 was an amendment to the constitution of California, by popular vote..a 2nd time…with large margin of victory.
    DOMA was a movement of the people where congress actually represented: 85–14 in the Senate & 342–67 in the House – with presidential signature (but was a veto proof margin)…definitely bi-partisan.

    Why did the people in California and the rest of the nation push for these things at this time? Well, we had been here before with abortion, prayer in schools, dredd/scott and others, where those with a clear minority value system abused the court system to push their values on the rest of society. For abortion, state by state had very restrictive laws…because the people valued life and thought people should take responsibility for their actions instead of euthanizing their children in the womb so they could pursue a life of freedom. For prayer in schools, the vast majority of Americans prayed and it was acceptable to pray because it is reality that God does exist…and answers prayer…but there were those who do not want to accept reality (or have a hard time comprehending it since there are so many apparent, and unexplainable, contradictions in the natural world), but instead they chose to constrain our society using revisionist history and redefinition of constitutional terms. Dredd/Scott was the decision forced by the few in the ruling class on the majority, this was another cog in the wheel which led to the civil war.

    To me, long term, what this ruling does is promote societal chaos..long term. Why? Because it tells America, it doesn’t matter what you believe, or what your values are, legislation is irrelevant, the constitution is meaningless. The only way to get your way is to put judges in place to promote what you want. Congress is irrelevant, they have no power over the judges (as evidenced by California calling their constitution unconstitutional), the President is irrelevant as evidenced by DOMA. Your state laws are irrelevant as are your state congresses and governors. This decision promotes a judicial ruling class even further and very clearly.

  5. Josh: I hate to agree with you on anything, but I do wish that California had just put it back on the ballot. But while I believe in democracy, I am also against the majority destroying the rights of the minority.

    If a majority in a state decides that miscegenation is an abomination, shall the nation let a state outlaw interracial marriages again. After all, that used to be the norm, too, right?

    First they came for the communists,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

    Then they came for the socialists,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a socialist.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

    Then they came for the Catholics,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Catholic.

    Then they came for me,
    and there was no one left to speak for me.

    • Goethe – i too am against the majority destroying the rights of the minority. But that’s not what is happening here. This is a question about whether this nation can define what marriage means. The people of this nation have the right to define what marriage is. No one is ‘coming for the gays’ to use your example. Those who are in the minority opinion are saying to those of a majority opinion…you don’t have a right of representation.

      To answer your question, with a question…exactly how would you prevent a movement of the majority of the united states of America? A majority enough to elect state congress and governors, federal congress and president, to the point that they could amend the constitution?

      Interracial marriages were legal in the majority of the states because the majority had legalized interracial marriage before Loving v. Virginia. And, in fact, the law in Loving v. Virginia that the supreme court overturned (which also overturned all the remaining laws against interracial marriage) was written after the Civil War, so it wasn’t a ‘founding law’ but a law written, as i’m sure many were in the south, after the civil war when the democratic party and the KKK were partnering to wreak havoc throughout the south after not only losing the popular national vote (which elected Lincoln and put the republican party in power), but also losing the Civil War.

      So the laws against interracial marriage being overturned was actually the opinion of the majority, not the minority. So that’s a bad example. But, still, if there were enough people who were determined enough to get the constitution amended, it should be. You would have to create a great oppression of the majority in order to prevent it…maybe even have to take up arms against them.

      Sometimes ‘the people’ make stupid decisions (like prohibition), but those stupid decisions have to run their course. The truth is that this earth and the people of this earth were created for righteousness and goodness. That’s why evil always fails in the end. That’s why the Soviet Union fell w/out a shot fired, that’s why the Nazi’s would have collapsed within a couple of years even w/out WW2…but WW2 was still necessary. Germany was falling apart from the inside because they were evil and evil never endures. Evil is exactly like a ponzi scheme, eventually the whole thing will collapse because there’s no there there.

      If people make an evil decision, the evil will not prevail in the long run. Defining marriage between 1 man and 1 woman is not an evil decision.

  6. Josh: It still comes back to the nature of the fight.

    This is not about forcing anyone to become gay-married. And it’s not about forbidding hetero marriage. So there’s no harm, no foul–no damage to make whole.

    This is about equal treatment. If hetero spouses are given federal benefits, and a state recognizes gay marriage, it is unconstitutional for the feds to deny rights that the state says these people deserve. And it’s not about ceremonies or tuxes. It’s about all the myriad benefits we give couples who are “married.” We do that because the stability of a nation rests on the stability of all its other relationships. Gay marriage encourages stability among that community.

    Back to the interracial marriage example, it is perfectly proper for the feds to deny a state the “right” to deny its citizens to have rights. The feds can outlaw miscegenation, but the feds could not constitutionally pass a law that says “marriage is between a man and a woman of the same race.”

    The question is whether, when the majority of states accept gay marriage, will the feds say states MUST accept gay marriage? I think that would be questionable.

    • I must disagree, it is not about equal treatment, its about forced acceptance. There aren’t benefits to married people that unmarried people don’t get. The benefits thing is not true, never has been true…quite honestly its been a lie (or misunderstanding) from the beginning.

      We are treating gays the same way we did the polygamists, and that is heterosexual marriage. Gay people don’t want to be a ‘gay community’ that would mean they are different, and they refuse to accept that their relationship is any different…remember their mantra..love is love. If love is love, then there is no separate community. If there is a separate community, then love is not love.

      You are apparently a homophobe bigot and don’t even know it…(just kidding)

      If they need a piece of paper to be stable, then they’ve got issues. But i look to the polygamists..why is it that the polygamists (or the thruples, or the other type of life-long commitment people) aren’t lining up demanding benefits? Because they are OK without government benefits and don’t need other people to accept them in order to feel better about themselves.

      The answer to your question is already answered with what’s going on with marriage now. The majority of states have already defined marriage as 1m1w (30+) and the federal government is not forcing the rest of the states to accept it. But one thing the federal supreme court isn’t doing is forcing state supreme courts to stick to state constitutions…because California amended their constitution and the state supreme court said it was unconstitutional.

      So that’s not the question…the question is what is a people to do when those who whole a minority view point are being represented, but those who hold the majority view point don’t. This isn’t about gays vs. non-gays. There are gays and non-gays on both sides of this issue. The clear majority opinion of all is that marriage is 1m1w. So what’s a people to do when the government doesn’t represent?

      • That’s where the harm and the foul is. When the government claims is it ‘of the people, by the people and for the people’, but doesn’t represent the people, especially when the people are clear about what they want…there is harm and foul.

        • Josh, well, no, DOMA had the de-facto result of making legal state marriages Illegal, and unfairly barred married people in one state to get the federal benefits available to married people in other states. Clearly, if someone is married, they should be given the federal rights for married people. That’s a no-brainer. DOMA had to go.

          Now then, dropping DOMA doesn’t change anything outside of states where gay marriage is legal. And if people in other states want to continue to bar gay marriage in their states, that is fine. Assuming they can get toe support to sustain that outlook. But the tide has turned, and DOMA laws will fall, state after state, now.

          I think you’re totally wrong in assuming that everyone believes as you do. While it’s true that majorities in certain states did bar gay marriage at one time, my guess is that the public no longer cares that much. It was a new idea, and as with all new ideas, it scared people. But in nearly every case, on every issue, the public is overwhelmingly apathetic, so DOMA laws will now fail.

          What we should do is start an ANGAR party, for people who are against the “anger” of partisans who are all whipped up about their own personal fetish (political or religious belief). It would stand for the “American Not Give A Rip” Party, and it would win every election on every level.

          • Goethe – DOMA did not have the effect of making any state marriages illegal. The Federal Government defined what it considered to be marriage (as the vast majority of americans accepted then and accept now), benefits given were in accordance with this. There was no specific intent to discriminate, because states could still redefine marriage as many did. There was discrimination from the gay lobby in trying to publicly bully (as they do today) and use the court system to force their way into society.

            The issue here is with forced acceptance. The broader public (vast majority, but not *everybody*) still believes marriage is between 1m1w. California amended their constitution twice in the past 15 years by popular vote of the people….hardly a turn in tide given that California is hardly a bastion of conservative / libertarian thought.

            The states are the ones who decided their own definitions of marriage, outside of DOMA. DOMA wasn’t even completely overturned, just a portion of it.

            The vast majority of Americans in the vast majority of states (practically enough to amend the constitution) still accept marriage as 1m1w, the same as they will not define marriage as 1m2w or 2m2w or whatever, it is 1m1w. The other issue here is, well, judicial tyranny for lack of a better term.

            Even many homosexuals accept the 1m1w definition, married and unmarried heaters accept it. People aren’t scared, that’s really just a lie people tell themselves when people don’t accept their ideas. You know, kind of like the mother consoling her bullied child…they’re just jealous of you. No, most likely her child met a mean kid who was a little tougher than hers.

            With this, people aren’t scared of homosexuality, common sense, science and religion all agree with its abnormally. So it is understood. What people are scared of is losing more of their representative form of government which claims to be of the people by the people and for the people, but as of late is holding fast to view points held by the smallest portions of society.

            As for the ‘don’t give a rip’ party….i think you’d probably have problems with turnout…;-)

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