June 16, 2010
Federal Court Case
on Same-Sex Marriage
By Mike McManus
reconsideration of California’s Proposition 8 is a miscarriage of justice.
First, the people
have already spoken. By a vote of 6.3 million to 5.8 million in 2008,
Californians voted in favor of Prop 8’s ban of same-sex marriage, even
though Barack Obama won the state on that same day by an unprecedented 24
Yet a single
judge, Chief U.S. Judge Vaughn Walker, heard final arguments Wednesday to
overturn the vote of millions.
How dare he do
so? Judge Walker is an open homosexual. Had he been an honorable judge, he
would have recused himself.
were heard Wednesday in what was the first trial of the issue in a federal
court. A decision will not be announced for weeks, but both sides predict
the case will be appealed, probably all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
has been biased toward the same-sex marriage side of the case since it was
announced that the two lawyers representing gay and lesbian couples would be
the two attorneys from opposite sides of the political spectrum – Theodore
Olson and David Boies who battled one another in the Supreme Court case,
Bush v. Gore, which decided the outcome of the 2000 election.
CNN’s story on
Wednesday night featured only the “politically odd couple” of Bois and
Olson. The attorney in favor of keeping Prop 8 was not mentioned or given
In his final
argument, Olson said, “We conclude this trial, your honor, where we began.
This case is about marriage and equality. The fundamental constitutional
right to marry has been taken away from the plaintiffs and tens of thousands
of similarly-situated Californians. Their state has rewritten its
Constitution in order to place them in a special disfavored category.”
California’s highest court declared gay marriage to be constitutional June
6, 2008, there were 18,000 marriages by gay and lesbian couples until Prop 8
reversed the ruling.
video tapes of testimony from both the gay and lesbian couples who are
plaintiffs. Sandra Stiers, 47, said “I would feel more secure. I would feel
more accepted. I would feel more pride. I would feel less like I had to
protect my kids,” if she could marry her partner.
who represented ProtectMarriage.com, argued that “The historical record
leaves no doubt…that the central purpose of marriage in all societies at
virtually all times is to channel procreative relationships into stable
relationships to ensure that offspring…are raised in those stable
marital relationship is fundamental to the existence and survival of the
race,” he said. “The purpose of marriage is to provide society’s approval to
that sexual relationship and to the actual production of children…Without
the marital relationship, your honor, society would come to an end.”
Walker was skeptical, asking for hard evidence of that claim, noting that
there are no rules prohibiting marriage between people who cannot have
children. He proposed that marriage was more about building a joint future
or sharing in life than procreating.
disagreed, arguing that marriage is designed to discourage “irresponsible
procreation,” which does not apply to gay couples who can only have a child
if a third person is involved.
that marriage “is the right of individuals, not an indulgence to be
dispensed by the state. The right to marry, to choose to marry, has never
been tied to procreation.”
on procreation neglected other more persuasive arguments.
What he should
have said is that “Gays are not really interested in marriage. In
Massachusetts where same-sex marriage has been in place for five years, only
4,000 gay couples have married (plus 8,000 lesbian ones). If gays are 3
percent of the population, that would be 96,000 people, only 8 percent of
whom have married.
Why should a tiny
fraction of 6.5 million people have the right to change a law that is
designed to give children a married mother and father, the best environment
in which to grow?
gay marriages are “open marriages,” in which both partners have sexual
relationships with others. Marital fidelity is the cement of genuine
marriage, a commitment that is central to marriage as an institution. Gay
marriage would erode that core value.
If this case is
ultimately decided by the Supreme Court, it could overturn the laws of 45
states, 30 of which have put the issue into state constitutions.