• It has come to our attention that some users may have been "banned" when they tried to change their passwords after the site was hacked due to a glitch in the old vBulletin software. This would have occurred around the end of February and does not apply after the site was converted to Xenforo. If you believe you were affected by this, please contact a staff member or use the Contact us link at the bottom of any forum page.

SCOTUS To Decide on Marriage Equality


livingstone

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,330
So, this isn't quite news, as it was announced a few months ago, but the hearings are due next week where the US Supreme Court will decide whether to uphold the ruling that the California prohibition on gay marriage violates the US Constitution, and also to decide on whether the Defence of Marriage Act is constitutional.

This has the potential to be as historic in US jurisprudence as Brown v Board of Education - the case that decided that racial equality wasn't just an issue for the States but was a matter of federal law, and requirements under the Federal constitution. If the SC rules that Prop 8 was unconstitutional, then, effectively, they will pave the way for marriage equality right across the US regardless of State views.

What's interesting is that Vaughan Walker's judgement striking down Prop 8 was very carefully crafted, with many legal scholars thinking that he'd crafted his judgement in a way designed to appeal, in particular, to Anthony Kennedy. He made a number findings of fact, which SCOTUS cannot overturn - they must accept his findings of fact and decide whether, based on those facts, he was correct in law to decide that a prohibition on gay marriage violates the US Constitution.

This is all in the context of major evolution in US attitudes to marriage equality. When Obama said that he favoured gay marriage, and people were saying on here that it didn't matter, I pointed out that if he won re-election, he would send the message that being pro-marriage equality was no longer an electoral liability. And since then, we've seen a flurry of politicians also come out in favour of marriage equality, including some Republicans (Steve Schmidt, Jon Huntsman, Rob Portman).

More recently, only yesterday, Hilary Clinton posted a six minute video explaining her support for gay marriage. And a poll released, also yesterday, showed 58% of people supporting gay marriage. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/03/18/gay-marriage-support-hits-new-high-in-post-abc-poll/

This is relevant - what we know about John Roberts is that as much as he is a conservative, he is also a legacy-hunter who will be, I believe, reluctant to place the SC on the wrong side of history. We saw that in his contortions on the Affordable Care Act. While I doubt that Roberts will be one of the votes supporting gay marriage, I do think we could be in for a majority overturning Prop 8. It's difficult to overstate the impact that would have on marriage equality around the world - certainly in western nations, like Australia, or Germany or Ireland it will be difficult to resist marriage equality when the most powerful cultural influence in the western world allows it.
 
Last edited:

NYCKY

Moderator
Joined
Apr 17, 2010
Messages
13,101
I agree that the case has the potential to be historic in terms of Supreme Court judgements. I also agree that Roberts has his eye on his legacy and as he is only in his late 50s, he could serve another two decades on the court by which time gay marriage will probably be legal in dozens of states.

The two cases are somewhat intertwined and it's hard to see how they could come up with different results but I could see these as being overturned even with as much as a 6-3 vote. I can't see Thomas, Alito or Scalia overturning them but I could see any combination of the others.

The "evolution" will continue and it will be on both sides politically speaking. I think a positive Supreme Court ruling would be a positive on this issue as it takes it off the table as an electoral issue across the country. The US has many issue and gay marriage shouldn't be one of them.
 

storybud1

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
Messages
6,741
Marriage as an institution is a joke in the U.S. (pasted)

The divorce rate in America for first marriage, vs second or third marriage

50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce, according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri.

According to enrichment journal on the divorce rate in America:

The divorce rate in America for first marriage is 41%
The divorce rate in America for second marriage is 60%
The divorce rate in America for third marriage is 73%

apparantly Catholics and Lutherans are least likely to divorce amongst the Religious lot and only 0.2% of the population in the UK have obtained a gay marriage.

I am more interested in when people start saying they are in a "straight" marriage and the liberal thought police try to ban this phrase as offensive and homophobic. (the 0.2% have the liberals by the nuts) oh, wait , that is why nobody, and I mean nobody in the real world outside a university votes for Ivana.

it is just so funny that the liberals guilt trip the straights to allow gay people to marry when most of them don;t even understand marriage in the first place. I'm just saying like,,
 

Munnkeyman

Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2010
Messages
7,188
This is the best bit of your post.

it is just so funny that the liberals guilt trip the straights to allow gay people to marry when most of them don;t even understand marriage in the first place. I'm just saying like,,

This was a close second -

I am more interested in when people start saying they are in a "straight" marriage and the liberal thought police try to ban this phrase as offensive and homophobic. (the 0.2% have the liberals by the nuts)
 

livingstone

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,330
I agree that the case has the potential to be historic in terms of Supreme Court judgements. I also agree that Roberts has his eye on his legacy and as he is only in his late 50s, he could serve another two decades on the court by which time gay marriage will probably be legal in dozens of states.

The two cases are somewhat intertwined and it's hard to see how they could come up with different results but I could see these as being overturned even with as much as a 6-3 vote. I can't see Thomas, Alito or Scalia overturning them but I could see any combination of the others.

The "evolution" will continue and it will be on both sides politically speaking. I think a positive Supreme Court ruling would be a positive on this issue as it takes it off the table as an electoral issue across the country. The US has many issue and gay marriage shouldn't be one of them.
Mostly agree, though I can see how they would come up with different results.

I think the best argument against the constitutionality of DOMA is that marriage is an issue for the States, and the Federal Government has no constitutional right to limit or refuse to recognise validly and legally constituted marriages conducted in each state.

Now, of course, if you go down that road, implicit in that suggestion is that States have a right to define marriage, which would mean that Prop 8 was legal and valid.

So in theory I can see how the SC might arrive at the decision that DOMA is unconstitutional but that states have the right to prohibit gay marriage.

Now, in the alternative, if the SC agrees that there is a Constitutional right to marriage equality, then I think you're right - they can't uphold DOMA while recognising a constitutional right to gay marriage - the effect of that would be to impose a requirement on all fifty states individually to recognise gay marriage but not the Federal government, which would be bizarre.

So if they strike down Prop 8, then they will also strike down DOMA.

But I think there is a legally justifiable way (albeit not one I agree with) for them to uphold Prop 8 but strike down DOMA.

It might be interesting if they uphold both Prop 8 and DOMA, because upholding DOMA concedes that marriage is not a purely state issue. This is easy to argue - you could easily argue that interstate commerce depends on uniformity of marriage and family recognition so that workers and companies etc can move from state to state freely. But once you get into the territory of accepting that it is open to the Federal Government to define marriage, then at some point in the future you will, inevitably, see the fed govt do just that. Not now because marriage equality doesn't have the votes. But in the future.
 

Dame_Enda

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2011
Messages
52,051
Kennedy is hard to read on this issue. He has been moderate on gay rights. I say the challenge will fail though on originalist grounds i.e. that the Equal Treatment clause was not originally intended to allow for this. The conservatives on the court tend towards originalism, while the liberals support a "living constitution" whose meaning evolves with the times. Kennedy is known though for citing international law in his decisions at times, so it will be interesting to see if that influences things. But on balance I predict the usual 5-4 split.
 

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
its just a word? why not?
It is not just a word. Government cannot and should not be allowed to define and dictate how we view human relationships(for concensual adults).

I have absolutely nothing against gays. If two men want to live together or four women for that matter, I don't care but don't tell me the government has a right to tell me to accept their relationships as marriages.
 
D

Dylan2010

It is not just a word. Government cannot and should not be allowed to define and dictate how we view human relationships(for concensual adults).

I have absolutely nothing against gays. If two men want to live together or four women for that matter, I don't care but don't tell me the government has a right to tell me to accept their relationships as marriages.
I dont see that the gov. is doing that , personally I dont care how the state views my marriage anymore than I care if the Car licence people like or dislike the colour of my car. Its simply the hoop one jumps through so one is not denied services. Religious people will probably see things through their church rites. As long as people have lived in groups there has been some tradition or status called marriage. If the state was blind to marriage, people (not all) would still get married.
 

Tawdy

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 4, 2011
Messages
4,532
It is not just a word. Government cannot and should not be allowed to define and dictate how we view human relationships(for concensual adults).

I have absolutely nothing against gays. If two men want to live together or four women for that matter, I don't care but don't tell me the government has a right to tell me to accept their relationships as marriages.


You seem, as usual, to be blinded by your own logic. It is precisely because there are people like you who hold such contradictory views that laws are made to protect the rights of others. Whether we agree to those rights or not.
 

livingstone

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,330
It is not just a word. Government cannot and should not be allowed to define and dictate how we view human relationships(for concensual adults).

I have absolutely nothing against gays. If two men want to live together or four women for that matter, I don't care but don't tell me the government has a right to tell me to accept their relationships as marriages.
Firstly, this thread is about the US Supreme Court, not the Government. Keep up.

But secondly, you are absolutely 100% wrong. It is the entire raison d'etre of Government's to make laws and courts to interpret them. As much as you hate the fact, Marriage is a legal institution subject to law, and so its condition will be determined by law, and those laws will be interpreted by courts.

That's democracy. Deal with it.
 

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
I dont see that the gov. is doing that , personally I dont care how the state views my marriage anymore than I care if the Car licence people like or dislike the colour of my car. Its simply the hoop one jumps through so one is not denied services. Religious people will probably see things through their church rites. As long as people have lived in groups there has been some tradition or status called marriage. If the state was blind to marriage, people (not all) would still get married.
Exactly, the government should have no business in marriage - gay or straight.

People (men and women) have being getting married before the notion of a State.
 
Last edited:

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
You seem, as usual, to be blinded by your own logic. It is precisely because there are people like you who hold such contradictory views that laws are made to protect the rights of others. Whether we agree to those rights or not.
I am not denying any one their rights. It is people like you who think the government are there to right ever wrong, the slings and arrows of life. Allowing in the process more and more government interference in our lives.

No thanks.
 

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
Firstly, this thread is about the US Supreme Court, not the Government. Keep up.

But secondly, you are absolutely 100% wrong. It is the entire raison d'etre of Government's to make laws and courts to interpret them. As much as you hate the fact, Marriage is a legal institution subject to law, and so its condition will be determined by law, and those laws will be interpreted by courts.
The US supreme court is a branch of government. And where did I say anything about any marriage facts?

That's democracy. Deal with it.
Wasn't it a democractic vote that overturned gay ''marriage'' in California in the first place?
 

livingstone

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,330
The US supreme court is a branch of government. And where did I say anything about any marriage facts?
I've no idea what your second sentence means. Syntax is your friend. 'Anything about any marriage facts'? Nope...no idea.

Wasn't it a democractic vote that overturned gay ''marriage'' in California in the first place?
A public vote in one state isn't democratic if it breaches a constitution by which California is bound. That is what is being tested in the Supreme Court.
 

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
I've no idea what your second sentence means. Syntax is your friend. 'Anything about any marriage facts'? Nope...no idea.
You said: As much as you hate the fact, Marriage is a legal institution subject to law.
 
D

Dylan2010

Exactly, the government should have no business in marriage - gay or straight.

People (men and women) have being getting married before the notion of a State.
sure but then I dont get your gripe if they are just rubber stamping what people do anyway, we are just back to "marriage" being a word and as the State uses it a mechanism to clear up some property rights issues and otherwise legally as a form of legally binding contract between to people, which only need courts to enforce them not the greater state if we assume courts would exist anyway regardless if the state existed or not.
 

Mossy Heneberry

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
3,841
sure but then I dont get your gripe if they are just rubber stamping what people do anyway, we are just back to "marriage" being a word and as the State uses it a mechanism to clear up some property rights issues and otherwise legally as a form of legally binding contract between to people, which only need courts to enforce them not the greater state if we assume courts would exist anyway regardless if the state existed or not.
It's not just a word though, the State like everything else seeks to control and dominate. If gay marriage is brought in, should I be forced to accept it? Like the way I have to accept a woman can change a piece of paper to become a man, get pregnant and be declared as the first 'man' to have a baby?*

Are man and woman just words?

* I don't accept this by the way.
 
Top