Monday, January 12, 2015

Supreme Court should take up gay marriage

Updated, 12:20 p.m.:

The U.S. Supreme Court could decide this week whether to take up the gay marriage question, days after N.C. leaders petitioned the court to rule on the constitutionality of North Carolina's now-defunct ban.

While Sen. Phil Berger and other Amendment One backers are tilting at windmills, they have a point: Until the Supreme Court settles the question once and for all, the legal fights and uncertainty will persist. Two federal judges separately struck North Carolina's ban down late last year, but Berger and others continue to fight.

A lesbian couple from Detroit has challenged Michigan's gay marriage ban. A federal judge ruled in their favor last year, but a federal appeals court stayed the decision. Gay marriage is now legal in 36 states, and conflicting rulings from federal appeals courts could prompt the Supreme Court to settle the matter.

The court this morning declined to hear a case from Louisiana. That case has only been ruled on in federal district court and has not made its way through the federal appeals court yet. The Supreme Court could still take up a case from Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky or Tennessee.

However you feel about the legality of gay marriage -- and we think anything less is outright discrimination -- the Supreme Court would now be abdicating its role by declining to take it up. In the meantime, we get nonsensical statements that ignore the Constitution's role of protecting the minority, like this one from incoming N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore:

"Regardless of where you stand on the ultimate issue, it is important to protect the will of the North Carolina voters who overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment."

-- Taylor Batten


Garth Vader said...


Why should married people (gay or straight) be granted over 1,100 privileges not afforded to single people? Doesn't that violate both the principles of the Declaration of Independence and the verbiage of the 14th Amendment?

Let's not forget that the Edith Windsor case involved a woman trying to avoid paying inheritance tax on a $5 million estate. Had a straight person done the same, you and your "progressive" friends would have decried the "greed of the One Percent".

The primary goal here should be the separation of marriage and state, not the expansion of discrimination that currently exists against single citizens.

Gipper1965 said...

Single citizens are not making a commitment to another person. The 1100 protections and privileges exist because marriage is a contract that singles have chosen not to engage.

David Treece said...

Why are these law makers spending our tax payers money for something that is a dead issue.

Garth Vader said...

@ Gipper,

And the government's role in that commitment is...?

Correct: nothing.

Archiguy said...

Garth, if government has any purpose at all, it's to enforce contract law. The roots of our civilization depend on the acceptance and enforcement of the rule of law. As the Gipper said, marriage is a contract that entitles people to certain legal privileges and rights.

The Constitution of the United States is clear on the matter of non-discrimination. The fact that GOP legislators in NC and several other states chose to ignore this overarching rule of law when they crafted a state constitutional amendment that codifies marital discrimination does not mean the majority gets to restrict rights of the minority in direct violation of the U.S. Constitution. Such an amendment is in fact unconstitutional.

This was told to these pandering Republicans time and again by Democrats and legal experts. They chose to ignore it because they either don't know much about the law or the Constitution, or more likely, just don't care. Not when there are votes to pander for.