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Same-sex marriage in Utah now in federal judges' hands

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  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    April 10, 2014 11:37 a.m.

    The ruling will be very predictable, Judge Shelby’s decision will be upheld and marriage equality will prevail.

    Utah AG hired expensive outside lawyers and all they can do is just beating the dead horse.
    Taxpayers' money should have been better spent.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    April 10, 2014 11:50 a.m.

    For those who claim this is state right issue. I think each state should have their own decision on technical issues like whether the legal age should be 18, like most states, or 19, like Nebraska, or 21, like Mississippi; or, with parental approval, whether it should be 16 for both genders or 16 for girls and 17 for boys etc.

    However, for fundamental issues, like whether a couple of different races can get married, whether a couple of same gender can get married, the federal judiciary system should have a say. It should not be like in the past, interracial couples can get married in one state but not in another state.

  • Values Voter LONG BEACH, CA
    April 10, 2014 11:55 a.m.

    I'm reading it went very well for Marriage Equality advocates, but it doesn't sound like a unanimous ruling is likely, based on the questioning and responses from the judge.

    Of course, that's speculation and I look forward to reading further reporting.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    April 10, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    New Mexico was able to see the inevitable.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    April 10, 2014 12:37 p.m.

    If you would like to hear the audio of today's arguments they are on the tenth circuit court's site. You might just put "tenth circuit court of appeals kitchen v herbert audio" into your search engine and you should find the link.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    April 10, 2014 1:15 p.m.

    If the pro same-sex marriage advocates are so sure they are going to win, I wonder why they are starting an ad campaign to try to win over hearts and minds in the state. If all they need is a court ruling and it is so inevitable, why do they need to do all this campaigning to get votes in favor of same-sex marriage? Gosh, maybe they're not quite so confident as they claim.

    We can pass all the laws we want and have all the court rulings we want and it will NEVER change truth or right.

  • cavetroll SANDY, UT
    April 10, 2014 1:18 p.m.

    @Cats

    "If the pro same-sex marriage advocates are so sure they are going to win, I wonder why they are starting an ad campaign to try to win over hearts and minds in the state."

    Probably the same reason why political parties and even the Mormon church buys ads in the media. To get their views known.

  • Lia Sandy, UT
    April 10, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    Religion should stay the heck out of law.

  • Rufio Saratoga, UT
    April 10, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    @USU-Logan - not so, even if it was amended that only those 99 or older qualify.

    Marriage is not a right, and it is available to all. A very small minority want to re-define marriage and seek it to be classified as a right....Rights are God-given and recognized by the Constitution as such. God does not define marriage in any way except between man-woman. Truth will prevail in the end.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    April 10, 2014 1:27 p.m.

    It's like watching the Pharisees spar with the Romans.

    The Law of Moses vs. the Law of the Land.

    Speaking of which --
    after all is said and done,
    I wonder if Utah Mormons will still believe --

    11. We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.

    12. We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.

    Because with all the saber rattling going on, it doesn't sound like it.

  • YouAreKidding Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    Here in Utah, the elephant in the room bigger than gay marriage is that of polygamy. As correctly stated by the attorneys representing Utah, once you open the door to same-sex marriage, requiring the recognition of polygamous marriages is the logical next step.

    As is often the case with well-intended bus misguided law-making, this decision is going to lead to places that the judges never envisioned or intended.

  • Candied Ginger Brooklyn, OH
    April 10, 2014 1:42 p.m.

    @Cats: "If the pro same-sex marriage advocates are so sure they are going to win, I wonder why they are starting an ad campaign to try to win over hearts and minds in the state."

    As Mormons have become more visible in jobs and schools and neighborhoods, as well as in entertainment, people across the country and around the world have seen that Mormons are normal people. The ads the Church ran over the years helped get that idea out there.

    So I think they are doing these commercials to help those who have been against same-sex-marriage. Harvey Milk famously said that gays and lesbians coming out to friends and family changes minds and hearts - we become real people as we come out and make connections.

    These ads will help people who listened to "the sky is falling" claims will see that maybe they disagree, but they can be friends and neighbors.

    I think the ads will help ease the changes when gay marriage is legalized, and I think it is a good and compassionate thing to do.

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    April 10, 2014 1:51 p.m.

    Rufio said, "Marriage is not a right"

    Incorrect. "Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man," fundamental to our very existence and survival."-- Chief Justice Warren writing for the majority in 388 U.S. 1, Loving v.Virginia (No. 395), June 12, 1967
    Rufio said, "and it is available to all."

    Seriously incorrect. "Marriage consists only of the legal union between a man and a woman."--Article 1, Section 29, Utah Constitution.

    Rufio said, "God does not define marriage..."

    "I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do, because I notice it always coincides with their own desires."--Susan B.Anthoney.

  • Willem Los Angeles, CA
    April 10, 2014 1:54 p.m.

    In the end in our country named America equality is always the winner. Mormon friends there is nothing to fear but fear itself!

  • Utefan4Lyf West Jordan, UT
    April 10, 2014 2:07 p.m.

    My_two_Cents_Worth:
    You have entered my absolute favorite quote. I applaud you. Susan B. Anthony truly knew what she was talking about.
    What we need to remember is that we are judging based on Gods will as interepreted by man. The original bible was re-written from ancient latin texts that priests were not always positive of. Taht is why there has always been discussion and amendments to the stories throughout the years.

  • Outside-View Federal Way, WA
    April 10, 2014 2:15 p.m.

    Utahs only hope is that these judges will do what Supreme Court Chief Justince John Roberts did for the Obamacare ruling. Rule in favor of the state by telling them under what circumstances their marriage law would be constitutional. Over Obamcare it was if they looked at the fine as a tax, which the goverment specifically said it was not.

    I still think the CA Prop 8 is the best case to show that States can define what marriage will be in their state. There, gay civil unions had every benefit that hetero sexual married couples did. It was only the term "marriage" that was being fought over. Utah doesnt have that.

    I hope the court would give some feedback to the State regarding this issue. Maybe they can call Justice Roberts for some advice.

  • CottageCheese SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 10, 2014 2:26 p.m.

    Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established.

  • koseighty The Shire, UT
    April 10, 2014 2:35 p.m.

    “This is not an easy thing to do when you know that people that you care about on both sides of the issue will be affected very significantly and very personally.” ~ Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes

    And therein is the big lie of this debate. The truth is that the only people who will be affected by the ultimate ruling in this case are the families of the LGBT community. "Traditional" marriages will NOT be affected in any way.

    I have been married to my sweetheart for 30 years. During that time 18 countries, 18 states, and 8 Native American Tribes have passed marriage equality. Thousands upon thousands of LGBT couples have married -- including some 1300 here in Utah. And all those marriages have affected, influenced, or changed my "traditional" family in absolutely no way whatsoever.

    The only "right" of traditional marriage that is under threat is the right to have something while denying it to your neighbor. And that has never been what "religious freedom" has meant to me.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 10, 2014 2:47 p.m.

    Re: "Religion should stay the heck out of law."

    And, law should stay the heck out of religion.

  • Inis Magrath Fort Kent Mills, ME
    April 10, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    @Rufio and anyone else who thinks marriage is not a right:

    The Supreme Court of the United States has held that marriage is a fundamental civil right through a line of over a dozen cases dating back to the 1880s. It is not an open legal question. Marriage is a civil right and that is settled law. Period. Example from the case of Loving v. Virginia (1967): "Marriage is one of the basic civil rights of man."

    You can like it, or you can not like it. You can even argue that you think the state has some legitimate basis upon which to deny the civil right of marriage to same-sex couples, but you cannot claim that marriage itself is not a civil right. When talking about marriage, same-sex or otherwise, we are talking about a civil right.

  • jrp7sen Logan, UT
    April 10, 2014 2:52 p.m.

    Love always prevails and hate always fails. Your beliefs do not influence the realness of another person's life and their ability to love another human being.

    I'm a Mormon millennial, and I support marriage for ALL. Yay!

  • UT Brit London, England
    April 10, 2014 2:56 p.m.

    YouAreKidding

    The church still believes in polygamy, I do not understand why Utah members freak out about it. Men can be sealed to more than one woman in LDS temples. Plural marriage is a doctrine of the church, its not something to be scared of.

  • Dr. G Bountiful, UT
    April 10, 2014 3:05 p.m.

    Overturning the Utah constitutional amendment on marriage is rather interesting when one considers the history of legal marriage contracts.

    In the seminal work titled Jewish Bioethics, the authors point out that the only other time in the history of the world when marriage between two men or between two women was codified into law was during the days of Noah, well over three thousand years ago (see Dr. Fred Rosner and Rabbi David Bleich, Ktav Publishing House, Israel, December 1999, page 219).

    Though the practice of sexual relations between same sex partners has occurred during others periods in recorded history, our day and Noah's day are the only two times when those practices were codified by the ruling authorities as the law of the land.

    How will our ruling authorities decide this case? Will they side with the lawyers and judges of Noah's day or will they take another course?

  • Mikhail ALPINE, UT
    April 10, 2014 3:32 p.m.

    @Lia "Religion should stay the heck out of law."

    Are you saying that we should declare the murder and theft laws invalid since they originated with some religious belief - or are connected to some religious belief?

    To say that belief - religious or otherwise - should have no place in the law is to say that there should be no law.

    @Inis Magrath "marriage is a right."

    What about Reynolds v. U.S.? Was it a "right" there?

  • Samuel L. Murray, UT
    April 10, 2014 3:46 p.m.

    "The Supreme Court of the United States has held that marriage is a fundamental civil right through a line of over a dozen cases dating back to the 1880s. It is not an open legal question."

    Marriage is a right. But what is marriage? Whatever we say it is? Do we have a civil right to whatever we want?

    Removing the gender requirement pushes back the boundary between marriage and non-marriage, but there are still others who will want in. If marriage is just about love, then on what grounds do we deny them? Can three women get married? Why not? Because marriage has "traditionally" always been between two people? Can a man marry his brother? Why not? Because marriage has "traditionally" been forbidden between close family members? To avoid birth defects? These guys won't have that problem.

    The restrictions make sense from the point of view of the child. The laws guide men and women into an institution such that if as the result of their love for each other a child happens appear, she is born into a pre-existing stable relationship where she can know and be raised by her own mother and father.

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    April 10, 2014 3:46 p.m.

    @Mikhail wrote: "To say that belief - religious or otherwise - should have no place in the law is to say that there should be no law."

    On the contrary. The strongest basis for law has nothing to do with belief:

    Reason.

  • Coach Biff Lehi, UT
    April 10, 2014 3:52 p.m.

    ....if Loving is to be the litmus test, why wasn't same sex marriage codified 30 years ago? Oh, that's right, because back then we didn't see sexual preference as immutable as race. Be honest, same sex marriage advocates, we are not defining rights here, we are re-defining marriage. We are granting tacit approval to an unhealthy lifestyle choice. Period.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    April 10, 2014 3:56 p.m.

    @my_two_cents_worth and @Inis Magrath

    Thank you for your compelling comments.

    @Mikhail
    "Are you saying that we should declare the murder and theft laws invalid since they originated with some religious belief - or are connected to some religious belief?"

    Whether you are religious or not, murder and theft harm innocent victims, you don't need to be religious to be against murder and theft.
    But even today, SSM opponents still can not convince the court what the harm of same sex marriage is. that is why they keep losing.

  • DanO Mission Viejo, CA
    April 10, 2014 4:10 p.m.

    “There is no question that the children of SS couples would likely be better off if their parents are guardians were allowed to marry.” -Gene Schaerr

  • Jimmytheliberal Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:21 p.m.

    T-minus until reality sets in! Now let the "activist judges" excuses begin. Possibly this could be an example to all of those that continue to use hate and bigotry against ANY certain sect, sex or group. It's 2014. As Dylan wrote..."Times, they are a changin".

  • markmongie Kaysville, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:21 p.m.

    So to play devil's advocate against LGBT couples wanting the State and US Government to change the definition of marriage -
    1- This country and the Constitution are inseparably connected to Judeo-Christian values. To separate the two will require a re-writing of the Constitution. You cannot pick and choose which tried-and-tested religious and government laws will or will not work together. It's a package deal folks. To dismantle the constitution will result in loss of true freedom. We'll end up with quasi-freedom, which is what Europe has.
    2- If we redefine marriage to same sexes, then logically we have to open the Pandora's box to polygamy, father-son, mother-daughter, son-son, monogamy, and any other sexual coupling of human beings that is imaginable. Do we really want to go there?
    3- What's wrong with creating a new class of marriage contract called NON-TRADITIONAL, and granting the same governmental rights of property ownership, taxes, etc. to those people. When it comes down to it, I really don't think gays want to change traditional marriage, they just want the financial benefits and equal treatment under the government.

  • brainoncapitalist Orem, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:28 p.m.

    Marriage is a fundamental, individual, unalienable right. Statutory marriage, however, is clearly NOT a right, but a privilege. That is what is so hilarious about all this. People are demanding a government privilege BY RIGHT. The exercise of a right does NOT entail having to obtain government permission (a license) to do so. I have a friend who has married several gay people, in a state where they are unable to get married statutorily.

  • Linus Bountiful, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:28 p.m.

    While I have never argued that marriage was or wasn't a civil right, I have argued, and will continue to argue that no individual has a civil right to redefine marriage. There is the rub. As soon as marriage is redefined as a union with the usual benefits of any two or more people who have some kind of nebulous affinity between or among them, you will see sibling marriages, plural marriages, parent-child marriages, business-partner marriages, and (fill in whatever your imagination can conceive). Don't tell me that the sacred institution will not be weakened. I'm a little tired of all you traditional marriage participants declaring that these new definitions have not and will not affect your marriage. These expanded definitions will affect your whole world.

  • Jimmytheliberal Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:29 p.m.

    Isn't it quite interesting how one that offers support and equality for all is constantly denied the ability to comment?Seems to me there are numerous posts commenting on this article along with many others that can be deemed "abusive in nature". Like it not change is on it's way and we all owe the great forward thinking state of Utah a tremendous "thank you"!

  • UT Brit London, England
    April 10, 2014 4:33 p.m.

    @mark

    Define quasi-freedom, you do know that Europe is not a country right?

    Also if you are LDS please tell me why you have a problem with polygamy.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:47 p.m.

    None of the arguments against gay marriage are persuasive to me:
    1. If you allow gay marriage, people will soon be marrying their cat. Ridiculous. Cat's can't contract.
    2. If you allow gay marriage, my religious freedom is taken away. Ridiculous. Your freedom to what? Be free of hearing about gay marriages?
    3. Gay marriages will ruin traditional marriage. How? Are kids going to suddenly decide they want to have a gay marriage because they are available even though they are heterosexual? Are you kidding? Who would do that?
    4. Gay marriage makes God mad. Perhaps. But a lot of things we do make God mad and we don't make laws prohibiting them. My philosophy: I will live my religion and worry about how happy God is with ME.
    5. Gay marriage hurts kids. There is no reliable evidence that this is so. It may seem counterintuitive to people who are repulsed by homosexuality, but it's just not shown by research.
    Am I missing some?

  • NedGrimley Brigham City, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:50 p.m.

    Ultimately, when its all said and done, it will be quite telling to see the decision and how the side that is "decided against" acts, and reacts, to the decision. Based on the tone of the participants, I have my guesses.

  • MemoFromA Demo SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 10, 2014 4:57 p.m.

    To: YouAreKidding You wrote: "As is often the case with well-intended but misguided law-making, this decision is going to lead to places that the judges never envisioned or intended."

    Consider this: A father marrying his son. A mother marrying her daughter. A sibling marrying a sibling. A woman married to multiple men. A man married to multiple woman. ..... After all, "We love each other and we're responsible adults! Who are we hurting, anyway?" That's the argument the marriage equality advocates make. Its repugnant, isn't it?

    In Great Britain last month a woman married her dog.

  • not-a-y-fan ogden, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:03 p.m.

    @Wonder and many others in this discussion board....

    I know that none of the arguments have persuaded you, but help me understand one thing. You said that gay marriage does not hurt children, right? Physically, you are right. Emotionally, i don't know if there is enough evidence yet to know all the effects of this. But when it comes to the creation of children...it hurts. It is impossible for two males to conceive a child by themselves. It is impossible for two females to conceive a child by themselves. Does this hurt society and children?...Yes.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:16 p.m.

    @Coach Biff
    "We are granting tacit approval to an unhealthy lifestyle choice."

    There's nothing inherently unhealthy about having same-sex attractions.

    @markmongie
    "1- This country and the Constitution are inseparably connected to Judeo-Christian values. To separate the two will require a re-writing of the Constitution. "

    That's false.

    "2- If we redefine marriage to same sexes, then logically we have to open the Pandora's box to "

    That's a slippery slope logical fallacy. Think about it this way, just because the LDS church practiced polygamy doesn't mean they did all those other things at the time and just because some out east marry their cousins doesn't make all those other things come to pass.

    "3- What's wrong with creating a new class of marriage contract called NON-TRADITIONAL"

    Separate but equal is inherently unequal.

    "I really don't think gays want to change traditional marriage,"

    Depends. If you mean not altering anything about opposite gender marriage, yeah they don't want to change anything. If you mean they just want benefits and don't care about the ceremonies/etc, absolutely they want to change that. Many churches marry same-sex couples now.

  • Steve C. Warren WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:20 p.m.

    Re: Asked if he agreed with the state's voter-approved Amendment 3, Reyes declined to state a position.

    Wow! That's an eye-opener. Good reporting, Romboy.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:34 p.m.

    @Open Minded Mormon

    I am not sure what side you are on but clearly it is not the side of your mormon leaders.

    This case is helping to decide what the law is that we should sustain.

    More importantly, In this constitutional based country, it is we the people that decide what the law is using the means and methods established by the constitution. We are only subject to the law that we the people create, or the amendments we the people establish.

    And the 14th amendment does not apply here, because it must be established that homosexuals are born that way.

    Science has not found any DNA markers or code or gene that determine homosexuality.

    It is not the same as race or gender, and any such comparison is ridiculous.

    Any reasonable judgment, and not ideological based reasoning, should side with the state.

  • Down under Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:34 p.m.

    This is the beginning of the end for religious freedom and laws of morality.
    I am sure that the Almighty is not well pleased with the violation of his eternal precepts and we will be judged as a country as we accommodate the needs of the vocal few.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:35 p.m.

    In response to not-a-y-fan, I continue my list of arguments:
    6. Gay marriage hurts society because gays can't have kids (Have I summarized it ok, not-a-y-fan?) -- Not persuasive to me because lots of marriages don't produce children and we don't ban them. True, if every marriage was gay we would have fewer children (assuming only married people have children), but that's not going to happen. People aren't all going to suddenly flock to a gay marriage when they are attracted to the opposite gender. I know I wouldn't. Would you? If not, why do you think others will? A relatively small portion of the population is attracted to the same gender, so no worries that all the young folk are going to give up heterosexual marriage.

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    April 10, 2014 5:41 p.m.

    markmongie said, "This country and the Constitution are inseparably connected to Judeo-Christian values."

    If this were true why is there no mention of the "Judeo-Christian" god anywhere in the document? Why did the framers include the religious test prohibition in Article VI? Why did the 1st Amendment protect the right of every American to violate the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd commandments? One would think that if "Judeo-Christian Values" were the driving force behind the USA they would have been reflected in its constitution.

    markmongie said, "You cannot pick and choose which tried-and-tested religious and government laws will or will not work together."

    Ours is a secular nation with a secular governing document defining the roles government and the protected rights of the citizens--ALL the citizens. What it does not define, and rightly so, is how government and religious laws will "work together." Simply stated, religious laws have no place in civil law in a free society. None. You are free to practice your religion but you do not have the right to demand that I live by your religious laws. Ever.

  • koseighty The Shire, UT
    April 10, 2014 5:46 p.m.

    @not-a-y-fan who wrote:

    "You said that gay marriage does not hurt children... But when it comes to the creation of children...it hurts. It is impossible for two males to conceive a child by themselves. It is impossible for two females to conceive a child by themselves. Does this hurt society and children?...Yes."

    So. You think that as long as we keep LGBT folk from marrying who they want they'll just say, "Oh, well. *sigh* I guess I'll go make babies with someone I don't love." ?!?

    Believe it or not, people (gay and straight) have babies outside of marriage. People (gay and straight) adopt children -- in and out of marriage.

    The fact is that marriage equality will change the quantity of children by exactly zero (no more, no fewer).

    Also, I would strongly recommend you brush up on the subject of "homosexuality." You seem to have missed some basic concepts. (Don't feel bad. The State of Utah says equally uninformed things in their arguments.)

  • a bit of reality Shawnee Mission, KS
    April 10, 2014 6:30 p.m.

    Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes:

    "I did express to them that I was sorry that they were feeling pain. This is not an easy thing to do when you know that people that you care about on both sides of the issue will be affected very significantly and very personally."

    What was he talking about? I see how the outcome of this will significantly and personally affect the couples that can't get married, but how will it affect the ones who already can get married or already are?

  • Jimmytheliberal Salt Lake City, UT
    April 10, 2014 6:46 p.m.

    @not-a-y-fan...What exactly is your point regarding the "effects" on children? How does it specifically "hurt" children along with society as you so eloquently stated? Are you inferring that a SSM couple could not properly raise a highly intelligent productive member of society? You are aware that Utah will not be the first state once the Federal Court upholds Judge Shelby's ruling? Also you are aware I'm most certain that SSM couples have been raising children throughout civilization? How does SSM weaken your own? Don't you believe that your marriage isn't as strong as you believe if another's weakens your own?

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    April 10, 2014 7:12 p.m.

    @ Wonder

    Yes it does hurt children psychologically. It confuses them and denies them a parent of one gender or another. It is so completely obvious that it's amazing how creative people have to get to explain it away.

    If God or nature meant for two of the same gender to pair up sexually, He or nature would have designed the human body to be more adaptable to one gender or the other. But He (or it- nature) didn't. This is a distortion that cannot be explained biologically, let alone spiritually and if humans continue to give into this and call it normal, there will be generations of very mixed up people. I'm so sad for my grandchildren who will have to live amongst all this confusion.

    For those with same gender attraction, don't give into it! You CAN live a happy, fulfilling life without it. Turn to Voices of Hope and read. It's proof that you can be happy.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    April 10, 2014 7:17 p.m.

    @ Wonder and others,

    Yes it does hurt children. It confuses them and denies them a parent of one gender or another. There is no way in the world anyone will convince me otherwise. Those children will unquestionably have to go through something psychologically damaging at some point in their lives because of it the absence of one gender parent and/or the absence of a biologically sound family. Guaranteed!

  • Ariz Madison, AL
    April 10, 2014 7:42 p.m.

    @Coach Biff
    "....if Loving is to be the litmus test, why wasn't same sex marriage codified 30 years ago?"

    First, hat question wasn't before the court in that case. Courts don't issue remedies that go beyond addressing the problems presented before the court. Just as the Windsor case didn't directly address the validity of state bans on same sex marriage but it did outline the legal reasoning for striking down those bans.

    Second, if you like, I can pull some quotes from dissenting opinions and arguments in Sharp v. Perez where people were predicting that lifting bans on interracial marriage would lead to striking down bans against polygamy and incest. That case was decided by the California Supreme Court in 1948. 66 years later none of those predictions held true. Considering the arguments presented today against same sex marriage parrallel the arguments used against interracial marriage, it's difficult to logically make the same conclusion that did not come to fruition decades ago.

  • Ariz Madison, AL
    April 10, 2014 7:57 p.m.

    @the truth
    "....if Loving is to be the litmus test, why wasn't same sex marriage codified 30 years ago?"

    Please show me where the 14th a Amendment is limited to biologically deterministic characteristics. There is nothing in the wording of the amendment that limits it's application to genetic or other immutable characteristics. Issues involving such things as age, race, and gender will cause the courts to give those issues more careful scrutiny. But you will find no precedent that says the 14th Amendment can be disregarded based solely on behavior or characteristics that are chosen.

  • A Run South Jordan, UT
    April 10, 2014 9:02 p.m.

    I personally accept that Same-Sex marriage is now part of our society. I do not advocate for it though. I believe in Traditional marriage.

    I do know people who are gay, and accept their decisions as what they chose was best for them.

    I may not agree with their decisions, but, heck, I don't always agree with my parent's decisions.

  • Jacala American Fork, UT
    April 10, 2014 9:04 p.m.

    The 14th Amendment, particularly the Equal Protection Clause, is the focal point of judicial decisions rejecting irrational or unnecessary discrimination against people belonging to various groups. It came about as a result of reconstruction following the civil war and was particularly forced upon southern states before they were allowed to be represented in Congress again.

    But with many good intentions, it has been abused for not only this issue but also things like Roe v. Wade and even lately regarding those snowboards wanting to be on Alta.

    I do not consider it irrational to legislate marriage according to local "family-centric" standards when the small group chooses an immoral behavior.

  • coleman51 Orem, UT
    April 10, 2014 9:39 p.m.

    I fail to see that marriage is a "right" that needs constitutional protection. Therefore, I cannot see same-sex marriage fall under the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution. I certainly don't see that it is in the public interest either. Same-sex marriage does not produce children or create families through natural means and therefore does not qualify for the same protection as traditional marriage where children are potentially involved. I am perfectly aware of the gay agenda, but on legal and moral grounds I cannot support the idea that marriage must be re-defined in order to accommodate those who wish to alter an institution centuries old and is necessary for the propagation of the human race when gay marriage proponents cannot be justified on either ground.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    April 10, 2014 10:57 p.m.

    @USU-Logan:
    "However, for fundamental issues, like whether a couple of different races can get married, whether a couple of same gender can get married, the federal judiciary system should have a say."

    Do you feel the same way about polygamy, close cousins, mother/son, father/daughter, etc. marriages?

    "It should not be like in the past, interracial couples can get married in one state but not in another state."

    In Utah, everyone can marry so long as they marry someone of the opposite sex, are of a certain age, are not closely related, etc. This applies to all citizens, so there's no 14th Amendment violation.

    If SSM is allowed, all other conceivable marriage combinations that can be conjured should also be allowed, lest there be gross discrimination.

    @koseighty:
    "'Traditional' marriages will NOT be affected in any way."

    Not so. Traditional marriage will disappear off the face of the earth... supplanted by myriads of other marriage combinations. You may well be able to marry your entire neighborhood if you love them. SSM people are asserting they should be able to marry whom they love. The reader can take it from there.

  • anotherview SLO, CA
    April 10, 2014 11:08 p.m.

    Re:Outsideview
    "gay civil unions had every benefit that heterosexual married couples did. It was only the term "marriage" that was being fought over"

    So the only difference between same-sex marriage and heterosexual marriage should be what it is called?

    Why is that, other than making it of less value or lower status?

    We want kids, growing up in same-sex households to know their family is of lower value?

    What is Christ-like in that?

  • Neanderthal Phoenix, AZ
    April 10, 2014 11:46 p.m.

    @my_two_cents_worth:
    "If this were true why is there no mention of the 'Judeo-Christian' god anywhere in the document?"

    Read Article VII... "done... in the year of our Lord..." I think it's the Judo-Christian 'Lord" they're referencing.

  • Jim Cobabe Provo, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:16 a.m.

    The presumptuous attitude of same-sex marriage advocates is breathtaking. They argue in favor of launching one of the most radical unproven social experiments in the history of humankind, then challenge the opposition to PROOVE that it will undermine existing social tradition. Blind arrogance.

    Who can say what good or harm may result? Certainly not the advocates of these sweeping new rights.

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:23 a.m.

    @Coach Biff "We are granting tacit approval to an unhealthy lifestyle choice."

    Just like we do now with tacit approval of felony spousal, child, drug and alcohol legal civil marriages?

    Oh the horror of a loving committed same-sex couple becoming legally civil married. I feel a gathering storm coming on and I am afraid.

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:36 a.m.

    @Coleman51 "I fail to see that marriage is a "right" that needs constitutional protection."

    Except that 15 times since 1888, the United States Supreme Court has stated that marriage is a fundamental right of all individuals. In these cases, the Court has reaffirmed that “freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage” is “one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause,” “essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men,” and “sheltered by the Fourteenth Amendment against the State’s unwarranted usurpation, disregard, or disrespect.” The last case (Windsor) was two women.

    Windsor v. United States..State laws defining and regulating marriage, of course, must respect the constitutional rights of persons, see, e.g., Loving v. Virginia, 388 U. S. 1 (1967); but, subject to those guarantees, “regulation of domestic relations” is “an area that has long been regarded as a virtually exclusive province of the States.”

    It is well-established and crystal clear that the right to marry is a central aspect of the right to liberty, privacy, association, and identity.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 11, 2014 5:15 a.m.

    I'm hoping for the fire and brimstone to start raining down. If it doesn't, what are all of you claims that "god is mad" or "god hates "gays" going to do when absolutely NOTHING HAPPENS?

    How will you cognitively dissonance that away?

  • rondonaghe Mesilla/USA, NM
    April 11, 2014 6:19 a.m.

    From what I understand, this 3-judge panel's decision could affect six states in making SSM legal. And in those six states, we have a spectrum of bans to SSM, from New Mexico, where I live, that never defined marriage as between a man and a woman, because it said "two people" to a position in another of these states that not only wanted to ban SSM but ban anything that came close to resembling it, which meant it also effectively banned civil unions. So in one stroke, this panel of three judges could sweep away voter approved bans. On this issue, I've never understood how voter approval should have been allowed in deciding other voter's civil rights. To me this is the crux, and every ban in the US that allowed voters to vote on another group of voters civil rights should never have been allowed to exist. But the Supreme Court did not want to sweep away this issue as it did with abortion more than a quarter century ago. Instead they set up this state-by-state fight. This is what we're seeing in this case.

  • Stephen Daedalus Arvada, CO
    April 11, 2014 6:31 a.m.

    I attended the arguments at the 10th Cir. and happy to answer questions folks might have.

    My take-away is that one judge is predisposed against affirming Shelby and SSM in general. So the Kitchens side will need both of the remaining judges to affirm Shelby's summary judgment. But I sensed each are equally skeptical of Utah's case and cautious of getting too far ahead of SCOTUS.

    I predict the 10th Cir. remands the case for trial (which summary judgment bypasses) for two reasons: first, it saves the 10th Cir. from deciding if SSM requires a higher level of scrutiny than rational basis. Second, if they presume rational-basis, Utah's pleadings thus far (ie "maybe" a risk for SSM kids) could be sufficient to squeak by under rational basis review.

    The 10th Cir. might prefer a repeat of the recent MI trial, where the same experts/evidence relied upon by Utah were absolutely shredded, and the SSM-ban fell. This trial-level scrutiny and take-down in Utah (and Okla) would bolster a finding of 'animus' on later appeal to better fit SCOTUS precedent, compared to just looking at Utah's ballot language.

  • LovelyDeseret Gilbert, AZ
    April 11, 2014 6:44 a.m.

    I listened to the Oral Arguments and Peggy Tomsic is continually being bailed out by Judge Lucero whenever the questions were too tough for her --which was often--. My conclusion from oral arguments is that the Appellant Court doesn't want to decide this case for Utah because of the polygamy issue and so they will punt the case.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    April 11, 2014 7:37 a.m.

    @Neanderthal 11:46 p.m. April 10, 2014

    @my_two_cents_worth:
    "If this were true why is there no mention of the 'Judeo-Christian' god anywhere in the document?"

    Read Article VII... "done... in the year of our Lord..." I think it's the Judo-Christian 'Lord" they're referencing.

    -------------

    That's just the dating convention of the time.

    Please show me an actual PROVISION in the Constitution referencing God or religion. Hint -- there's just two places either is mentioned -- (1) in the First Amendment which provides that people can worship as they choose and that government cannot establish religion and (2)in the Eighth Amendment which provides that no religious test can be used as a qualification for public office.

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    April 11, 2014 7:51 a.m.

    @WTS "Not so. Traditional marriage will disappear off the face of the earth."

    Should we hold homosexuals accountable for global warming too and the failure of opposite-sex couples to act in away the state or a religion believes they should?

    Sky will fall argumentation wasn't constitutional when folks wanted to intermarry and still doesn't trump due process and equal protection guarantees.

    Sexual orientation has been determined to be fundamental to a persons identity and person-hood. A requirement to change someones (heterosexual, homosexual, bi-sexual) sexual orientation in order to civil marry is not only unreasonable, but unconstitutional. A right to marry someone for which there is no attraction or desire of intimacy is no right at all.

    Current civil marriage law has a presumption of intimacy, a type of relationship that is fundamentally different than the one you have with other family members, where a legal family relationship already exists. Same-sex couples through civil marriage establish the same family relationship with the presumption of intimacy as opposite-sex couples.

  • fact based Salt Lake, UT
    April 11, 2014 8:17 a.m.

    @ Stephen "Utah's pleadings thus far (ie "maybe" a risk for SSM kids).." thus a rational basis.

    Even if such a risk existed, it would be over-inclusive since Utah law does screen for risk in civil marriage law. There is no parental fitness (or procreative) test in Utah's civil marriage law, and it would be unconstitutional to target only same-sex couples as a class for a new state marriage policy on suspected risk. Convicted spousal, child, drug and alcohol abusers can legally civil marry where the risks are well known. The state does not check marriage license applicants for criminal records, income and educational levels for example, good predictors of child outcomes.

    Also, animus is glaring in the law itself, not only can't same-sex couples civil marry, no other relationship or union will be recognized. For example "Not only will a sibling not inherit the IRA, they are completely disinherited from everything else = Animus.

  • JBQ Saint Louis, MO
    April 11, 2014 8:48 a.m.

    Three judges and 3 branches of government. Basic civics states that "the people make the laws". The judges interpret the wishes of the people who crafted those laws. Rule by judicial fiat is making many people in this country very uncomfortable and agitated. It happened in California with Prop 8 and it will undoubtedly happen again in Utah. There will be an appeal to the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court will remand it back to a lower court. Once again, there will be frustration and agitation that "the will of the people" is being denied.

  • Stephen Daedalus Arvada, CO
    April 11, 2014 9:28 a.m.

    @fact based: "Also, animus is glaring in the law itself, not only can't same-sex couples civil marry, no other relationship or union will be recognized."

    Personally, I agree with your point, and this is what the Kitchens attorney threw back at Judge Kelly. Kelly appeared to misunderstand the subtlety of the standard that Windsor introduced for SSM (Kelly: animus = "mean-spirited and bigoted" when Windsor suggests that animus can be found in the practical impact, not some bad intent of legislators or voters). So yes, the additional ban on -any- legal recognition of same-sex couples may doom Utah, if not now, at a remanded trial.

    The vibe I got from the other 2 judges was a hesitancy to clarify the fuzzy Windsor standard, and instead fall back on a lower rational-basis review, in which case there seemed to be some willingness to give Utah a pass, despite the relatively bogus "research" they claim gives them reason for concern, and thus legitimate state interest (rational basis standard).

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    April 11, 2014 9:36 a.m.

    Wow, these comments!

    Get a grip, People. If/when same-sex marriage becomes the law of your state, the sky will not fall. Your church will still be there. Your moral view and opinions will not be illegal. You'll still be free to speak your mind, and free to teach your children your precepts, principles, and doctrine.

    Your marriage will survive. Your heterosexual children can still get married when they grow up. The only change will be, that the one in twenty or so of your children who grow up gay will also be able to get married. You may have kicked them out of your life by then, and you may boycott their wedding, if they even invite you, but at least they'll still have some chance at happiness, even without you in their lives.

    The only ones who lose in this are those people who have a burning desire to visit total misery on those gay children of theirs, their extended families, their neighbors and their colleagues.

    I'll hold you in the Light until you get over that.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:39 a.m.

    @wrz
    "If SSM is allowed, all other conceivable marriage combinations that can be conjured should also be allowed, lest there be gross discrimination."

    Not so. SSM is currently allowed in 17 states. Also in other 8 states SSM ban has been struck down by court, that is because the opponents of SSM could not provide compelling argument why same sex couples should not be allowed to get married.
    However, if the government can provide rational, legitimate reason why marriage should be limited to monogamy, to un-related couples, it can still be kept that way.

    "Traditional marriage will disappear off the face of the earth... supplanted by myriads of other marriage combinations."

    Frankly, the "sky is falling" argument is getting old.

  • fact based Salt Lake, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:45 a.m.

    @JBQ

    The outcome of an election is always the best solution. Take the case of 3 starving wolves and a delicious lamb voting though the political process on what to eat for lunch. The majority should always rule. What is the majority of starving wolves to do, go hungry?

    The actual point of Constitutional law is that the Fourteenth Amendment protects the minority from the majority. That's how our checks & balances system of government works. Historically, if the vote of the people had been able to stand as the law of the land, women would have not gotten the vote, interracial marriages would still be prohibited, and our schools would still be segregated. it is an education in itself to read any of the rulings released by federal judges who have ruled on this issue. Essentially, your disapproval is not sufficient grounds for establishing a law of discrimination.
    Sadly for some, the right to life, liberty, and property,to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of NO elections.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:51 a.m.

    O'really says:
    "For those with same gender attraction, don't give into it! You CAN live a happy, fulfilling life without it. Turn to Voices of Hope and read. It's proof that you can be happy."

    RanchHand says as rebuttal:
    "For those with same gender attraction, ACCEPT it! You CAN live a happy, fulfilling life with it. Turn to Voices of Hope and read. It's proof that you can be happy."

    "Yes it does hurt children. It confuses them and denies them a parent of one gender or another."

    -- So does death, divorce, prison, etc. What's your point?

    @A Run;

    Thank you. I know that was hard, but sincerely, thank you.

    @Jacala

    "Immoral behavior" is relative. Personally, I view your position as "immoral" because you prefer discrimination against your fellow citizens.

    @coleman51;

    Do you receive governmental protections and benefits from your relationship? Equal treatment requires ours receive that same protection and benefit. You know, 'equal'.

    @wrz;

    "In Utah, everyone has religious freedom... as long as it's Mormon". How does that sound to you?

    @Jim Cobabe;

    We don't restrict freedom and rights based on "might happen".

  • Ranch Here, UT
    April 11, 2014 10:02 a.m.

    @rondonaghe;

    We don't "vote" on rights; that's why they're called "rights". Voter approved or not, you don't get to vote away another's rights.

    @JBQ;

    You still have the matter of constitutionality. Not just "majority rules".

    IMO, if the judges rule that Utah's argument about "what's best for the children" wins, then thousands of Utah heterosexual parents had better run for state lines, because their kids could be taken away as these parents don't meet the "good for children" test.

    Thieves, murderers, adulterers, divorced, criminal record, lack of education, SINGLE PARENTS, etc.

    Run for your freedom and to keep your kids!

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    April 11, 2014 10:08 a.m.

    @Stephen "Give Utah a pass, despite the relatively bogus "research" they claim gives them reason for concern, and thus legitimate state interest (rational basis standard)."

    I agree, I also suspect that if Utah is given a pass (child outcome risk being a legitimate state interest), is that their proffered rationale is way under-inclusive (I mistakenly said over-inclusive). Assuming 'parental fitness tests' pass constitutional muster, and is in-effect for everyone else, then I think Utah could be on much more solid ground. Targeting only homosexuals as a class for "child outcome risk" is ripe for a constitutional challenge.

    Researchers in the fields of child development and family psychologycommonly use convenience studies as a methodological tool for studying issues of interest because they, in contrast to large-scale studies, offer the opportunity for a more detailed analysisof the circumstances affecting children and their parents. 150 in number, have repeatedly demonstrated that there is no scientific basis to conclude that children raised by same-sex parents fare worse than those raised by heterosexual parents.

  • netsrik Draper, UT
    April 11, 2014 10:17 a.m.

    I'm hopeful that the court will do the right thing. I'm also hopeful that this case will set the precedent, and make SSM legal throughout the country. Two people who have the same "parts" getting married will affect me in no way.

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    April 11, 2014 10:18 a.m.

    Neanderthal said, "Read Article VII... "done... in the year of our Lord..."

    That's a pretty big stretch. First, Anno Domini (AD-that standard dating still in use today) translates to "year of the lord" and is as religion neutral as "in god we trust" on US currency. Second, if your claim that "in the year of the lord" is, in fact, part and parcel of Article VII then it logically follows that the subsequent 40 signatures are also part of the Article; something I think we can all agree is absurd. Third, the very first amendment to the Constitution clearly shows that the US constitution is not linked to "Judeo-Christian" or any other religious values other than the value afforded all Americans to worship as they please.

  • pleblian salt lake city, utah
    April 11, 2014 10:22 a.m.

    Render unto Caesar what is Caesars.

    Since when did we look to government to sanction our beliefs?

    Now, we control the local law by voting majority, we should set a precedent not to comingle law with morality. The law exists for man's liberty...not his salvation. Demographics indicate our majority will wane.

    Promote laws that promote choice wherever choice causes no tangible harm to another.

    We've become our great grandfathers' persecutors...enforce a morality that we prize over another's with government's bayonet. Gay marriage bans are so fully encompassed by the shadow of 1890s anti-polygamy reasoning, that advocates against gay marriage are best described as modern-day Johnston soldiers--quelling the gay rebellion.

    I'm not gay. I don't understand same sex attraction. I value liberty. I choose to tolerate homosexuality, but recognize the Constitution does not require me to. The Constitution requires I afford homosexual behavior that same liberty, if not tolerance, which Wilford appealed for 120 years ago on these same streets.

    Asking man's government adjudicate morals belonging to God smacks of a lack faith and implies God is not an able Judge on his own time and terms.

  • pleblian salt lake city, utah
    April 11, 2014 10:42 a.m.

    Please comment.

    I always felt that gay marriage, and gay rights in general, were best described as expressions of belief and a persons feelings. Therefore, 1st Amendment issues. Marriage, to me, is an expression and contract of commitment within a family.

    Thus, I always sided with gay and gender freedoms based upon the 1st Amendment protections, because, like religion, it is protected expression and speech regarding a persons deep felt beliefs and feelings.

    I have never been convinced that this is a 14th Amendment issue and that status could be defined by "sexuality." Race, nationality, and gender are all physically recognizable traits which invite discrimination. Sexuality is not. Only the expression of sexuality can invite discrimination. Therefore, I never felt this was a "status" issue.

    Am I alone in this thought? Does anyone else believe that framing this debate within the confines of 14th Amendment threatens to blow apart the carefully and exceptionally defined "protected status" designations and render them meaningless?

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    Pleblian: "Race, nationality, and gender are all physically recognizable traits which invite discrimination. Sexuality is not. Only the expression of sexuality can invite discrimination. Therefore, I never felt this was a "status" issue. "

    -----------

    Gender, age, race, AND religion are areas that one cannot discriminate against. The 14th amendment guarantees that ALL people are treated equally under the law, whether you can see the differences (race) or not (religion, sexual preference.)

    Does it make more sense now? Let me quote a part of that 14th amendment: "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States..."

    That says nothing about seeing a difference. Does Amendment 3 abridge the privileges of gays? Are they citizens? How can Amendment 3 be constitutional?

  • morpunkt Glendora, CA
    April 11, 2014 12:25 p.m.

    The so-called persecuted will inevitably become the persecutors, by their radical element. Beware America. The Trojan Horse will become Trajan of Roman yore. History can repeat itself, by mankind's slippery slope. Christians of the world beware.

  • Jeff in NC CASTLE HAYNE, NC
    April 11, 2014 1:15 p.m.

    @ morpunkt
    "The so-called persecuted will inevitably become the persecutors."
    So we should continue to oppress and discriminate because you are afraid you might be treated the way you treat others? That's an interesting interpretation of the old bible teaching: Do unto others as you would have done unto you, unless you think the thing they would do unto you is somethig like what you are right now doing unto them.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    April 11, 2014 2:11 p.m.

    @ Ranchhand The fire and brimstone doesn't always come immediately, but it does and will come. Maybe not in this life necessarily, but we'll all be judged by a God who has been generous enough to give us life saving commandments. It's worth it to pay attention to them and follow them.

    @ Ranch ( maybe the same person?) I'm not sure you intended to leave in the last sentence you quoted me on because if you did, you're contradicting yourself. Or maybe you're not aware of the book and organization of "Voices of Hope" that help and encourage those with same gender attraction to remain chaste by either becoming a strong, clean, celibate single person with great worth or allowing themselves to develop feelings for the opposite gender and marry them. It has been a successful and happy venture for many. By the way, chastity doesn't include same gender physical intimacy before or after "marriage". I'm pretty sure you know that but thought I'd toss it out there for anyone who didn't know.

  • pleblian salt lake city, utah
    April 11, 2014 2:50 p.m.

    @Lane Meyers,

    I appreciate and agree with you that Amendment 3 may not be constitutional.

    The point of my previous post was I believe it is the First Amendment which protects sexuality. Perhaps the 14th's equal protections clause protects their right to marry--but that assumes 1) marriage is a right; 2) they are a class of citizens. I for one, am not in favor of creating or recognizing any more rights. This, in spite of prior Supreme Court dicta. Digressive dicta should not, in and of itself, create a right where the legislature has not. Two, if homosexuals are not considering themselves a "protected class" then they are treated equally because they, like everyone else, can marry the opposite sex. Otherwise, if I can prove sufficient genetic diversity, why can I not marry my cousin? Are same-family attractions, barring genetic risk, also a protected "class"?

    In sum, outlawing a behavior and expression--homosexuality, marriage--should be prevented by the 1st Amendment, not by redefining a behavior as a protectable "status"--which is a perilous judicial construct as it is.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    April 11, 2014 2:56 p.m.

    First, thanks to Henry Drummond for direction to audio. Have listened to it twice now. Schaerr excellent. Oral argument better quality than brief. Tomsic a bit plodding in style, but did solid job. IMO, both sides can feel were well represented.

    Agree much focus on Windsor's silence on level of scrutiny to be applied.

    Stephen Daedalus: Will take you up on offer, thanks. Hope you’re still watching this thread. My questions:

    1-Is fact that all other courts have found that bans fail under rational basis alone controlling or due serious consideration?

    2-Can they consider evidence already presented in MI trial? (Why need to try same facts again?)

    3-Is answer to Holmes' "rational basis review + science inconclusive" that State does not require risk analysis before issuing licenses to known child abusers, wife beaters, others we already know increase risk of bad outcome?

    I think Judge Kelly is looking for a way to delay by remanding. While this may be disappointing, I think would be in SSM proponents’ favor, as Michigan trial demonstrated. Facts/evidence are on pro-SSM side.

    Hearing on OK case in two weeks should be interesting!

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:40 p.m.

    pleblain: Otherwise, if I can prove sufficient genetic diversity, why can I not marry my cousin?

    --------

    You can in a few states. Just get married there and come back to Utah. Utah will accept that marriage, even though it is barred by Utah law ( I should qualify that you can marry your cousin in Utah as long as one of you is sterile.).

    But if a gay couple marries in MA and comes back to Utah, they are not recognized. Why? Do you think that there is a little prejudice in play here? Can you see that gays are being treated differently than other citizens? Would you use the 14th amendment now?

    Rights are already ours. Aren't we born with them? Women always had the right to vote, but the laws prohibited it for most of our history. Then people changed and the laws reflected the truths. I think this is another one of those instances. Just like interracial marriages were always right, just not legal. Now they are legal.

  • fact based Salt Lake, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:45 p.m.

    Many undoubtedly voted for Utah's Amendment 3 because of sincerely held religious beliefs that homosexuality is wrong or that gay marriage conflicts with doctrinal teachings. For them, the ban ensured that their “strongly held values” are “reflected in the law.” However, those beliefs cannot justify State-sponsored discrimination. “The same Constitution that protects the free exercise of one’s faith is the same Constitution that prevents the state from either mandating adherence to an established religion or ‘enforcing private moral or religious beliefs without an accompanying secular purpose. Some people also have “sincerely held religious beliefs” against interracial dating and interracial marriage. The Constitution prevents the State from enforcing such beliefs and simply recognizes that such views cannot deprive citizens of their rights.

    Prejudice rises not from malice or hostile animus alone. It may result as well from insensitivity caused by simple want of careful, rational reflection or from some instinctive mechanism to guard against people who appear to be different from ourselves.”

  • fact based Salt Lake, UT
    April 11, 2014 3:55 p.m.

    @Plebian,
    Slippery-slope arguments decrying that if States cannot ban same-sex marriage, they will have to allow plural marriage, marriage between siblings, and marriage to young children.

    Virginia’s counsel raised the same specter in Loving v. Virginia, arguing that Virginia’s “prohibition of interracial marriage” stood “on the same footing as the prohibition of polygamous marriage, or incestuous marriage or the prescription of minimum ages at which people may marry and the prevention of the marriage of people who are mentally incompetent.” These tactics are NO more persuasive in 2014 than they were in 1967. Even assuming someone could rationally explain how permitting an interracial or same- sex couple to marry will force the State to permit three or more people to marry, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of laws barring polygamy in Reynolds v. United States. Reynolds has been on the books for 135 years establishing weighty stare decisis considerations. There is also valid state interest and rational basis in laws intended to prevent harm and abuse in closed faith promoting communities where abuse is well known to be under reported.

  • Tony1957 Yuba City, CA
    April 11, 2014 3:56 p.m.

    What two people do in the privacy of the home is their business, and what kind of sex a person likes to have does not belong in the public domain. It is their business if they are gay. And if this is a case of “equality for everyone,” then should heterosexuals be allowed to share with their employer and everyone else in society what kind of sex they like to have, and do so without expecting repercussions for openly sharing the kind of sex they like to have?

    The logic of the pro-gay marriage crowd would dictate that 3 heterosexual couples who get together for orgies should be able to be married as a group with each man being married to all three women and with each woman being married to all three men. It is about group sex couples having “rights as humans to be able to equally marry” as single partner couples do, and “it’s about benefits and adoption rights.” They just “want equal rights” and “equal protection.” This is the same logic of the pro-gay marriage crowd, and those quotes are the words they use.

  • Tony1957 Yuba City, CA
    April 11, 2014 4:04 p.m.

    Marriage between a man and a woman was given to us by God long before the United States government became involved. If gay marriage is a “human right,” it cannot be granted by the United States government. Those who insist that it can must be willing to accept the corollary that human rights can be denied the United States government.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 11, 2014 4:20 p.m.

    @O'really;

    Same person, different computers (had problems using same account on both for whatever reason, it wouldn't allow me to save comments, weird).

    WE LGBT on this comment board and others are the true "voices of hope". We are examples that you CAN be happy as an out LGBT individual. We are examples that LGBT individuals CAN form successful, monogamous, loving, committed relationships with one another. My partner and I have been together over 15 years now. Many other LGBT people on this thread are also in long-term relationships.

    The "voices of hope" you reference are frauds and are actually HARMING LGBT people.

    Love will conquer. We will be allowed to marry, even in backwater Utah.

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    April 11, 2014 4:28 p.m.

    @Tony

    The Supreme Court has consistently ruled that marriage is a fundamental right protected by the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses. Marriage is among the rights “‘of basic importance in our society,’ rights sheltered by the Fourteenth Amendment against the State’s unwarranted usurpation, disregard, or disrespect.” Maynard v. Hill. Because marriage is a fundamental right, a law that “significantly interferes” with that right is subject to “critical examination,” not mere “rational basis” review. One can argue that laws which substantially interfere with the right to marry are subject to strict scrutiny. Strict scrutiny is attached to the fundamental right in question.

    It is well-settled that courts must apply “strict scrutiny” to laws and regulations “that ‘significantly interfere’ with the right to marry.

    Moreover, all individuals means all individuals. Loving teaches that the Fourteenth Amendment protects the fundamental right to marry, even if the way in which it is practiced would have surprised the Constitutions Framers or made them un-comfy. Perhaps SSM is simply manifestations of one right; the right to marry as applied to people with different sexual identities.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    April 11, 2014 5:16 p.m.

    @ Jim Cobabe

    "[The arrogance of SSM advocates to] challenge the opposition to PROOVE that it will undermine existing social tradition."

    When did we ever prove that LGBTs are inherently immoral? It has always been a presumption based in ignorance. Further, if we are abiding by the Golden Rule, shouldn’t our first presumption be “innocent until proven guilty?” Wait. I’ve heard of that before…
    ________________

    Discussion on animus in the hearing: Very happy to hear the meaning distinguished as “improper purpose or effect.” Ill intent not required. I have never believed that most had ill intent in mind when these bans were passed, but rather sincere (albeit unjustified) belief.
    ________________

    Judge Lucero asked how the circumstances created by Utah's refusal to acknowledge legal marriages from other states were different than those present in the Dred Scott case. Nice!

    The State acknowledged that children of gay couples legally married elsewhere that then moved to Utah would suffer because the State would not recognize the marriages. When asked how this squared with the State's "child-centric" argument, Mr. Schaerr brushed this off with, "There are always trade-offs in these matters." Not so nice.

  • gwtchd Mountain Village, AK
    April 11, 2014 5:36 p.m.

    I would like to know what the definition of marriage is by those who support same-sex marriage.

    As for me it is the union between a male and female for the purpose of procreating.

    Comparing same-sex marriage to race is ridiculous.

    If same-sex marriage is allowed then marring ones cousin or sibling should be allowed. Right? Or even your mother or father. Right?

  • Staylikethatforever Lumerton, NC
    April 11, 2014 5:38 p.m.

    The SCOTUS may be the one to interpret the law on this land, but it's God's land. He will have the final say as to what is a right or not. Marriage is a privilege, and is an ordinance established by God. They may "win" this and have their desires past to change what God has ordained from the beginning, but in the end we will all give an account to God for our own actions.

    Like the person above stated, the government should stay out of religion. This is the problem. Government got involved in marriage and never should have gotten involved in religious matters. You can not compare this issue to the issue of inter"racial" marriages. It's not the same and it's an insult to all of us people of color. This isn't the civil right issue of the day. People in SSR have never had to drink from another fountain and have never been made slaves because of their sexual preference. Stop with the comparisons.

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    April 11, 2014 5:51 p.m.

    @gwtchd wrote:

    "I would like to know what the definition of marriage is by those who support same-sex marriage.

    As for me it is the union between a male and female for the purpose of procreating."

    So an elderly male-female couple aren't married in your definition?

    "Comparing same-sex marriage to race is ridiculous."

    You know what would be really ridiculous? Comparing same-sex marriage to incestuous relationships...

    "If same-sex marriage is allowed then marring ones cousin or sibling should be allowed. Right? Or even your mother or father. Right?"

    ...which you just did. *sigh*

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    April 11, 2014 5:54 p.m.

    @gwtchd
    Griswold v. Connecticut upheld the right of married couples not to procreate. The Supreme Court did not find a problem severing the link between marriage and procreation. And Turner found—even in the prison context (where deference to State government approaches its apogee)—that no legitimate interest could support denying inmates the right to marry, despite their inability to procreate, let alone to consummate the marriage.

    What is more, both cases described important values of marriage that transcend mere procreation: “Marriage is a coming together for better or for worse, hopefully enduring, and intimate to the degree of being sacred.” Griswold. “It is an association that promotes a way of life, not causes; a harmony in living, not political faiths; a bilateral loyalty, not commercial or social projects. Yet it is an association for as noble a purpose as any involved in our prior decisions.” Id. Marriage involves “expressions of emotional support and public commitment,” “spiritual significance,” and “expression of personal dedication.” A right to marry someone for which there is no attraction or desire of intimacy is not right at all.

    Does that help address your inquiry?

  • Stephen Daedalus Arvada, CO
    April 11, 2014 6:24 p.m.

    @Karen:

    1. No, 10th Cir need not consider that all lower courts are finding SSM-bans fail under rational basis, but I'm sure its on their mind even if not controlling since it caused Utah to disclaim one 'expert' and makes it harder to consider an outlier position.

    2. 10th Cir. can't use MI trial record (findings of fact) directly for the UT appeal. But the MI case was a small elephant in room, when judge commented on Utah distancing itself from the now-debunked Regnerus.

    3. Utah's inconsistency in not barring demonstrably bad opposite-sex parents from marriage goes to the 'nexus' issue, the second part of the rational basis analysis (related to @equal/@fair thread above). Even IF the science is deemed unsettled (thus a question of fact in need of trial), 10th Cir, like the lower courts, might as a matter of law find insufficient nexus.

    A remand might act a pressure release valve: voters from each state can hear the weakness of the rationales that carried the SSM-ban elections, rather than blaming the judiciary.

    And yes, a rare shout-out to Dred Scott! I'm sure that one left a mark.

  • gwtchd Mountain Village, AK
    April 11, 2014 6:29 p.m.

    14th Amendment it forbids states from denying any person "life, liberty or property, without due process of law" or to "deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” By directly mentioning the role of the states, the 14th Amendment greatly expanded the protection of civil rights to all Americans and is cited in more litigation than any other amendment.

    The following are civil rights protected:
    Civil Rights: Race, color, national origin, disability, age, sex, religion.
    No where does it say Sexual orientation or preference. Sorry!

    Sex means gender...look it up.

    I believe the lawyers know all this and the judges know all this. There is no way that same sex marriage is protected under amendment 14 or civil rights.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    April 11, 2014 7:48 p.m.

    @ Stephen

    Thank you. I have a few more questions if you don't mind. First, I was wondering about your impression of the exchange when Judge Kelly was pressing Tomsic on animus and Judge Lucero interrupted to ask, "Has public policy ever been allowed to overrule Constitutional rights?" On tape it came across like a rescue, but newspaper accounts suggest there is more to the story. Was wondering what your take was.

    Also, did it bother you that Judge Kelly brought up polygamy? I've always seen this as a red herring because polygamy raises issues of delineation of rights flowing from marriage that do not arise in 2-person marriages. Am I missing something?

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    April 11, 2014 9:40 p.m.

    @gwtchd

    Kind sir or madam, It is well-established and crystal clear that the right to marry is a central aspect of the right to liberty, privacy, association, and identity as determined by SCOTUS interpreting the US Constitution and making case law.

    Fifteen times since 1888, the United States Supreme Court has stated that marriage is a fundamental right of all individuals. In these cases, the Court has reaffirmed that “freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage” is “one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause,” “essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men,” and “sheltered by the Fourteenth Amendment against the State’s unwarranted usurpation, disregard, or disrespect.”

    If you feel so inclined kindly become familiar with these two cases.

    1. Maynard v. Hill, 125 U.S. 190, 205, 211 (1888) ...... 15. United States v Windsor 570 U.S. (2013)

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    April 11, 2014 10:23 p.m.

    @ Stephen

    re: Utah's inconsistency in not barring demonstrably bad opposite-sex parents from marriage goes to the 'nexus' issue, the second part of the rational basis analysis (related to @equal/@fair thread above)."

    Another issue that may be on point, is that even if Utah tired to ban demonstrably bad opposite-sex parents, this too (parental fitness test) would not be constitutional. Marriage being a fundamental right.

    Turner v. Safley, prison inmates - "impermissibly burdened" their right to marry. This decision is in line with the Supreme Court's decision in Loving v. Virginia that the right to marry is a fundamental right protected by the liberty element of the due process clause.

  • Stephen Daedalus Arvada, CO
    April 11, 2014 11:31 p.m.

    @Karen: re: Judge Kelly on animus & polygamy.

    I've not listened to the tape, but the body language among all three judges suggested frustration on Lucero's part and bemusement on the part of Holmes with Kelly.

    On animus, Kelly seemed to imply a sort of infallibility of state-level democracy which came off as legally befuddled and maybe even embarrassing to Lurcero -- as if the idea of judicial/constitutional scrutiny as a check/balance on direct democracy was something Kelly was shocked to be hearing about for the first time.

    If Lucero was rescuing Tomsic in this regard, it seemed less to slip her an answer, but rather to save her from the unenviable task of explaining a fundamental legal concept in single syllable words to one of her legal elders. Lucero was rescuing Kelly if anything.

    Kelly's polygamy comment was also odd. The slippery slope fallacy is common online but surprising to hear from a judge. In fact, when Utah's lawyer first raised it, he was politely redirected. After Kelly brought it up again during Tomsic's argument, and folks realized he wasn't cracking a joke, it just felt awkward and a bit sad.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    April 12, 2014 9:04 a.m.

    Stephen Daedalus, (Please don't respond. If you have any left, save your remaining comment(s) for later!)

    Thank you so much for that court-watchers-eye view of the proceedings! That's one of the things that's sadly missing from so much of the reporting.

    One of the problems listening to the audio, is trying to guess which judge is speaking, and without any of the non-verbal clues, such as who a judge is looking at, facial expression, and body language, we barely get half of the context.

    I don't know too much about appellate decisions, but from what little I've heard of Supreme Court proceedings, I get the impression that the judges mostly use the lawyers as foils to make their own points with each other, sort of a peek into what will go on when they enter deliberations. That's when the real argument must happen!

    It also seems like judges sometimes play devil's advocate just to rattle the lawyers, or to bolster their own creds as impartial. There was certainly a lot of rattling going on in this hearing. Not to mention Dred Scott!

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    April 12, 2014 10:27 a.m.

    @ Stephen

    Your willingness to take questions is much appreciated. Thank you for your comments and observations. Looking forward to hearing on Oklahoma case.

  • dmcvey Los Angeles, CA
    April 14, 2014 12:44 p.m.

    When something affects you personally--like not being allowed the same rights as every other citizen, it is personal.

  • Avenue Vernal, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:47 p.m.

    @dmcvey
    It is also personal when someone disregards your religion and shoves their agenda down your throat.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:42 p.m.

    @ Avenue

    Your religion has nothing to do with somebody else's sexual orientation.

  • YBH Sugarland, TX
    April 15, 2014 10:42 a.m.

    @Avenue

    Your religion is not above the constitution of the United States.

  • Avenue Vernal, UT
    April 15, 2014 5:20 p.m.

    @Two For Flinching
    Actually, it does. Allow me to quote from my religion's standing on marriage and the family
    "we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets." (The Family: A Proclamation to the World)
    My opposition of SSM is derived from this statement. Many ancient civilizations have been destroyed for advocating homosexuality.

    @YBH
    The Constitution doesn't require states to legalize SSM. All people can marry, as long as it is within the conditions the law has set. This gives everyone equal protection under the law, as required by the 14th Amendment.