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Drew Clark: How the rule of law resolves differences among courts on marriage

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  • Hugh1 Denver, CO
    July 6, 2014 2:14 a.m.

    Do you hear wedding bells? In 2004 George Bush ran on a platform to pass a federal marriage amendment to limit marriage to one man and one woman, and now that the tables have turned, anti-gay activists are saying that marriage is a state's rights issue and that the federal government has no business defining constitutionally protected rights of its gay citizens. Stunning hypocrisy. The writing is on the wall however, this is not going to be a state's rights decision, too much water has passed under that bridge, even for this right leaning Supreme Court. Count on the 14th Amendment and Loving v. Virginia for precedent (overturning interracial marriage prohibitions, 1996). The recent decision in the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling, with one dissenting justice, did not appreciably exacerbate disagreement on the matter (especially considering the unprecedented string of state court gay marriage victories), it essentially consolidated findings and precedent, a necessary step on the path to a Supreme Court finding. I also wouldn't hang my hat on the 8th Circuit decision, remember the reversal of Hardwick by Lawrence. So, do you hear wedding bells? I do.

  • Light and Liberty St. George/Washington, UT
    July 6, 2014 6:35 a.m.

    No matter what happens, despite the rule of law, the ruling will either defy the universal rule of law which states that marriage is only between a man and a women or it will reject it! By rejecting what is right, Americans will become more split, just as slavery split our nation. No matter what argument the south put forward, it was wrong, States' Rights to the contrary! The argument before this nation is not whether states should define this or the Federal government or courts, it is whether we want to defy God in the same way the southern states defied Him by wanting slavery to continue! Gay marriage is wrong because it strikes at the very heart of God's plan for the happiness of His children and the continuing unfolding of His plan. It doesn't matter whether you are an atheist or not. Slavery was wrong; so is Gay marriage!

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 6, 2014 6:50 a.m.

    You fail to mention that the newest Appeals Court decision relied on a more current judgments by the US Supreme Court. This substantially alters the calculus you expound upon. And you fail to point out that judgements have been rendered under the jurisdiction of the 8th District Court of Appeals that are in conflict with that original Nebraska judgment. These judges used the logic of newer Supreme Court decisions.

    There may or may not be further decisions from Appeals Courts soon that will better clarify how the Courts will be in accord with the many, many Federal District Court judgments that allow same sex marriage. Those opinions will serve as the basis for a US Supreme Court ruling or lack thereof.

    This seems like a DN opinion that clutches at straws. All of the Courts so far, and the majority of the entire US populace has moved on from the restricted view of marriage. It is time the DN did as well.

  • Sal Provo, UT
    July 6, 2014 7:59 a.m.

    The Supreme Court should take the case simply because the circuit courts are arriving at the same decision: upholding same-sex marriages, but based on different reasons.

    This shows clearly that these judges are activists determined to impose their own subjective prejudices rather than ruling on established precedent as required by the Constitution.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    July 6, 2014 8:50 a.m.

    The Supreme Court doesn't rule on social issues in a vacuum. They're aware of how issues are seen by the voting public, and often their rulings reflect society around them.

    Dred Scott, Plessey vs Ferguson, Brown vs Board of Education, Loving vs Virginia... all took note of existing social norms, and often broader movements across the nation.

    Would Brown vs Board of Education be possible in 1880? No. Loving vs Virginia? Hardly. Our nation was ready for these changes, even though the immediate culture in those locales was less ready.

    The issue of gay marriage is very rapidly evolving, before our eyes. Whether it happens in 2015 or the Supremes wait a few years, it appears opinion among our people is headed one way - toward equality. (Even among young LDS, this issue is seen very differently than among their parents.)

    This momentum is reflected in conservatives now clinging to the hope of a patchwork system of state law, when 10 years ago they preferred federal prohibition of gay marriage, outright.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 6, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    Courts overturning voter approved inititives is violation of States rights a Constitutional Amendment would not violate states rights as they have to approve constitution. And if passed that means people could not use the 14th amendment as reason for so called same gender marriage at expense of 10th amendment. No hypocrisy there.

  • Jeff Harris Edmonds, WA
    July 6, 2014 9:21 a.m.

    Nice try Drew, but there really is no split. This ship has already sailed. The ruling in the 8th circuit from 2006 predated the Supreme Court's Windsor 2013 decision that overturned portions of the misnamed Defense of Marriage Act. All of the recent district court's and the 10 Circuit Court's rulings that overturned anti-gay state laws cited Windsor as the binding precedent in their decisions. The far-right's great anti-gay hope, the Supreme Court's refusal to hear Baker v. Nelson in 1972, was shot down when the high court ruled in Windsor.

    In the decision you referred to, but didn't name, Equal Protection v. Bruning, the U.S. Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit (2006), cited Baker as its precedent. Every court decision since Windsor make it clear that the Supreme Court found a federal question in anti-gay marriage statutes, something that didn't exist in 1972, rendering Baker moot.

    The Supreme Court is unlikely to revisit the question unless one of the circuit courts decides differently post-Windsor. It might happen, but I wouldn't count on it.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    July 6, 2014 9:46 a.m.

    I appreciate that you brought up the Nebraska case in the 8th Curcuit, but some details of that decision need to be looked at a little bit more. The courts decision was made based on the idea that sexual orientation is not a suspect classification, meaning that ones sexual orientation does not set that individual up be victims of discrimination. I believe that the current political climate can prove that judgment to be false.

    Another problem with this case is that nine of the eleven judges in the 8th circuit at the time of the ruling were nominated by Republican presidents. While I like to think that all judges keep their own personal opinions from making decisions based on rule of law. it's hard to think that doesn't happen when there is a big imbalance like this one in the court.

    A lot has changed since 2006, and every state in the 8th Circuit, except Iowa and Minnesota, have same-sex marriage lawsuits pending. It would be interesting to see what changes in that part of our country before we claim that there is a split.

  • Kevin J. Kirkham Salt Lake City, UT
    July 6, 2014 10:21 a.m.

    The issue boils down to this – When we "liken the scriptures (or the 14th Amendment) unto ourselves", should we adopt the overarching principle or should we only apply them if our circumstances mirror those addressed by the scriptures/law? SSM opponents assert the latter (at least concerning SSM).

    1Cor10:29/D&C 134:4 forbid using morals as justification to infringe upon the rights of others. SSM opponents say that 1Cor10:29 applies only to religious liberties. This "narrow" view can stated marijuana isn’t against the WOW since it isn’t mentioned. Porn is OK since we aren’t looking upon a woman to lust after her. We’re looking upon paper or pixels. Narrow interpretations lead to detailed do's/don’'ts in the Law of Moses and in our current secular laws. Some have stated that the 1st Amendment’s free speech clause originated due to political speech, that the 1st only applies to that and not free expression in general. 2nd Amendment opponents often assert that it only applies to muskets and not AK47s.

    D&C 101:78-80 wants maximum freedom to maximize agency. Let this be our view.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 6, 2014 10:41 a.m.

    Drew;

    Is your own marriage recognized when you travel across the nation, from state to state? Are you single in one state, married in the next, single again when you cross another state line? No?

    Then why should the legal marriages of LGBT Americans be treated differently?

    Bigotry, Drew, is a moral issue. Discrmination, Drew, is a moral issue. LGBT Marriage isn't.

    LL says:

    "...the universal rule of law which states that marriage is only between a man and a women ..."

    "Universal rule of law" states that? Ha, ha, ha. Not. Your god is irrelevant as we are not a theocracy. If you want to live under a theocracy, move to Iran.

    @Sal;

    The 14th Amendment is a part of the US Constitution.

    @higv;

    False. That is their job; determine the Constitutionality of laws.

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    July 6, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    Sorry, but the Nebraska case was pre-Windsor. I do think it's possible that SCOTUS will grant cert, though. They like to put their mark on the biggies.

  • Stormwalker Cleveland , OH
    July 6, 2014 10:59 a.m.

    @Light and Liberty:

    Perhaps you have read some science-fiction alternate history story. The defense of slavery was almost totally based in the claims that the Bible advocated and endorsed slavery, that Africans had the "Mark of Cain" and were inferior.

    A century of institutionalized and legal racism and segregation were based on the same claims of "what the Bible says."

    Even the most cursory reading of speeches and sermons and statements from about 1810 to the 1970s will show how strongly mainstream Christianity supported and justified racism and segregation as God's will on race mixing and an orderly society. The Southern Baptist Convention came into existence because southerners felt missionaries should be able to own slaves; Falwell's "Moral Majority" originated 125 years later to resist integration of schools.

    Those who fought against slavery and segregation were radicals and liberals who were willing to reject the traditional teachings and claims about the Biblical basis and justification for slavery.

    On the really important issues of equality for all, "the Bible says" and "God's will" have been on the wrong side every single time in the last 200 years.

  • Pitchfire Petersburg, AK
    July 6, 2014 11:00 a.m.

    And just where in the Constitution are these principles articulated?

    I find a few principles in the Declaration of Independence, but by and in large the principles upon which our nation was built are to be found (as the 1892 Supreme Court stated in "The Church of the Holy Trinity vs. the U.S.,) in Christianity. That is the basis of the systemic problems we are now encountering, the failure to secure any founding principles (the Constitution is really just procedural).

    That, to me is very self-evident to the objective party.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    July 6, 2014 11:29 a.m.

    @Light and Liberty,

    It is almost comical that you put slavery is wrong and states' rights in the same passage. Don't you know people in the South used to claim that slavery and segregation are states' rights?

    @Sal

    People may buy your "activist judge' argument, if some of the 20+ separated court rulings on this issue rule in your side of favor, but unfortunately, not even one of these rulings are on your side, including Republican appointees. That fact itself is already very telling.

    In Kentucky, lawyers for the state argued heterosexual marriage leads to a stable birthrate and economic stability. Judge John Heyburn (a George H.W. Bush appointee) said, "These arguments are not those of serious people."

    In Pennsylvania, Judge John Jones III (a George W. Bush appointee) wrote, "In future generations, the label 'same-sex marriage' will be abandoned, to be replaced simply by 'marriage.' We are a better people than what these laws represent..."

    In Michigan, Judge Bernard Friedman (a Reagan appointee) wrote, "Many Michigan residents have religious convictions whose principles. . .inform their own view points about marriage. Nevertheless, these views cannot strip other citizens of the guarantees of equal protection."

  • The Wraith Kaysville, UT
    July 6, 2014 11:32 a.m.

    @Light and Liberty

    If, as you say, the South as defying god by wanting to keep slavery then why were so many of their pro slavery arguments founded on the bible and the belief that slavery was a divinely appointed institution? You really should do some actual research and read the arguments the South put forward to defend slavery. They drip with references to god and the bible. In their view getting rid of slavery was an insult to god.

    Had you been born in the South in the early 1800's you would have likely thought the same.

    Allowing same sex marriage to become legal will not defy gods law or any other universal law. Guess what will happen when same sex marriage is legalized. Nothing. The world and America will move on and we will be a better, stronger nation. There will be no fire from the sky, no destruction from above. What will the religious right say when all of their dire projections prove false?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 6, 2014 12:56 p.m.

    Re: "This momentum is reflected in conservatives now clinging to the hope of a patchwork system . . . ."

    It's not conservatives that have produced this patchwork system. Rather, it's disingenuous LGBT activists that, although they know that the Supreme Court has clearly held that the law does not protect same-sex marriage, actively seek out the one or two corrupt activist jurists in the federal judiciary that are willing to abrogate their oath of office and support their rhetorical sophistry.

    They hope to sway the Supreme Court's corrupt leftists, and one or two of its clearer thinkers.

    They'll fail.

  • Pitchfire Petersburg, AK
    July 6, 2014 2:20 p.m.

    The author cites the Constitution as the source of these apparently ambiguous "principles" and then closes by saying that it's really court precedent that matters. I would love to know which principles and where they are found.

    @Light and Liberty,
    Some of us could read your arguments clearly and some of us could even see how right they are. We could also see how what some people have done "in the name of God" is different than what God adjudges as right and wrong. Further that inasmuch as our view of God and His desires is correct and we comply, we prosper, and inasmuch as we contort, misconstrue or set His will at defiance, we harm ourselves and each other.

    Morality has a source people.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    July 6, 2014 2:33 p.m.

    The editorial is correct. It only take four justices for the Supreme Court to take the case. Go for broke.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 6, 2014 2:35 p.m.

    For those that say the tide is turning, man cannot make moral what God declared immoral. Since the Devil wants us to be miserable and knows we will if we misuse our creative powers will try to pressure people to think it is ok and marriage will make it legal. However people that engage in that behavior will still be miserable and since the Devil does not support those that listen to him in the end the recent expirement of so called same gendered marriage will collapse under the weight of it's own iniquity.

    Besides why do they demand marriage when many have left opposite sex partners and very few gay people are monogamous. High rate of STD's among them. Legalizing behavior won't make it go away any more than a law against gravity would make it go away.

  • ludwig GREENVILLE, SC
    July 6, 2014 2:56 p.m.

    It is cruel and unusual treatment of the LGBT community at large to tell them that they can get married and then put a stay on the ruling. They have waited for over 200 years for this day just as Black people have waited for come 100 Plus for their full civil rights after having them denited by Southern White Bigots. Time was the LGBT community could be executed (murdered is a more proper word here) for simply being born the way thatthe good Lord made them. Being an LGBT person is NOT a lifestyle (that is a chose way of life for instance a Golf lifestyle)but the way someone is born that is determined at the moment of conception.

  • lib1 Provo, UT
    July 6, 2014 3:05 p.m.

    I fear that soon, it won't be enough for religious liberty proponents to "live and let live" when it comes to gay marriage. We see with the brouhaha over Duck Dynasty, the Mozilla CEO, Chick-fil-e, the New Mexico Bakery and the Coyote Restaurant in LA.. These show the ugly, coercive side to the Gay rights movement, which increasingly resorts to bullying to silence advocates of traditional marriage.

    I admire the courage of those willing to stand for Traditional Marriage because of their personal religious convictions. Today, it is much harder to be on that side of biblical marriage than it is to stand with the hip, urbane counter-majoritarian elite advocating gay marriage.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    July 6, 2014 3:07 p.m.

    @higv

    Do you think there could possibly be a correlation between monogamy and a right to marry? You see, for generations same-sex couples were not allowed by law to marry. Anyway, your argument that very few gay people are monogamous as a reason to deny marriage is ridiculous. After all, we don't apply that same logic to all of the heterosexual couples who have not been monogamous and want to marry.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 6, 2014 4:13 p.m.

    @kevinJKirkham interpretation of the scriptures to justify what you choose to believe. Religions have a right as a body to speak out on moral issues. 1st amendment applies equally to them. One religion does not have a right to have priveleges another does not. @Ludwig no one in the lbgt community is not allowed to vote, drive, live or work where they want. They are not executed for there behavior, Though there behavior does cause a lot of diseases in the community. And who says they are born that way. Choose to think that, but many left opposite gender partners so can't say born that way. Some people may struggle with same gender attraction. Don't need to act on it. God made me have a violent temper, dabble in pornography, shoplift, do a number of other things. That is what you are saying. God does not give us any disposition to sin. And so called same gender marriage will never be allowed in the eyes of maker, and those that say otherwise or try to change it will have to face him on the issue.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 6, 2014 5:57 p.m.

    It is an established fact that Christians believe that sex within marriage is more moral than sex outside of marriage. In fact, we call cohabiting "living in sin."

    It is also an established fact that sex within a same-sex relationship is perfectly legal in all 50 states. So, whether you believe that is moral or not, you must accept that the Supreme Court has determined (in Lawrence v. Texas) that it's not a matter of public interest, and, being a private matter, it's not anyone else's business.

    SO, we're left with this. If you believe that marriage makes for a more moral relationship than merely living together, and if you prevent same-sex couples from marrying by throwing legal prohibitions in their way, that additional immorality that you heap on them is entirely your doing, not theirs, and hence belongs entirely to you. Their "sinning" is victimless. Yours is absolutely not.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 6, 2014 6:33 p.m.

    Stormwalker,

    Several prominent abolitionists were religious. Including Anthony Benezet, Henry Ward Beecher, Sojourner Truth, Harriett Tubman, and Harriet Beecher Stowe. I am sure there are others.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 6, 2014 6:34 p.m.

    @higv;

    Very few straight people are monogamous and statistically, 50% of them leave their spouses and get divorced. Straights have high rates of STDs. We should then ban straight marriages because, clearly, straights are unstable.

    @lib1;

    I stand for "traditional marriage". I also support marriage equality. Why do you celebrate bigotry and the bigots?

  • Daedalus, Stephen ARVADA, CO
    July 6, 2014 9:03 p.m.

    The columnist says: "..two circuit courts differ on the very question of whether same-sex marriage is a “new right” [8th Cir.] or the same “right to marry” that has existed for centuries [10th Cir.]

    Apples and oranges do not a circuit-split make.

    The phrase "new right" does not appear in 8th Cir. opinion in Citizens for Equal Protection v. Bruning. Instead, the opinion makes clear that "Appellees do not assert a right to marriage or same-sex unions." The question faced by the 8th Cir. was a bank-shot by a same-sex couple, applying the limited SCOTUS precedent they had at the time, Evans v Romer (1993) to claim Nebraska's SSM ban deprived them of equal access to the political process. Faced with that narrow question, 8th Cir. did not find the 'animus' SCOTUS found in Colorado and upheld the ban under rational basis review.

    The 10th Cir. applied Windsor (2013) decision to find marriage (of any sort) is a fundamental right under the substantive due process protection of the 14th Amend, and thus any law that infringes upon that right is subject to strict scrutiny, under which Utah's SSM ban fails.

  • Laura Bilington Maple Valley, WA
    July 6, 2014 9:30 p.m.

    @higv writes, "Since the Devil wants us to be miserable"..

    Your source for that information, please?

    "people that engage in (SSM) will still be miserable"

    Your source, please? SSM has been legal in MA for a decade. Please tell me what percent of married SS couples told you (or anybody else) that they are miserable?

    "Legalizing behavior won't make (STD's) go away"

    SS relations have been legal nationally since Lawrence vs Texas eleven years ago. What's the rate of STD's among gays who have applied for marriage licenses? Do you know? If not, why are you making these claims?

  • southmtnman Provo, UT
    July 6, 2014 10:26 p.m.

    I support traditional marriage! I strongly believe that marriage between one man and one woman is ordained of God to further His Plan of Happiness.

    And I also support marriage equality. Same sex couples have every legal and moral right to legal and lawful marriage on equal social, political, and economic grounds as opposite sex couples.

    Why is that a problem?

  • Light and Liberty St. George/Washington, UT
    July 6, 2014 11:13 p.m.

    USULogan and the Wraith: better reread my post carefully to understand your response. Slavery was wrong despite any sources cited about the bible or anything else that advocated for it! It is obvious that whoever lived in the south, be it Christian bible thumper, or atheist, it was wrong! Period! People make poor decisions. People are blinded by their own greed or evil nature! There is nothing new about that! No research needed! Lincoln was Lincoln because he finally came to the conclusion that slavery must be eradicated! Gay marriage is on the same track as abortion. 50 million lives have been flushed down the drain, but the issue is still before the electorate! Excuses to the contrary, God doesn't change His Word and conscience can't be eradicated easily! Gay marriage can become legal in all 50 states; it will divide our nation further until it is either accepted as something moral and justified, or it is not! The middle ground is gone!

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 6, 2014 11:33 p.m.

    How can the United States remain unified with two systems of marriage?

  • RBB Sandy, UT
    July 6, 2014 11:58 p.m.

    That is the great thing about technology. 146 years after the 14th Amendment was passed the judges were suddenly able to find the right to gay marriage in there despite the overwhelming vote of the citizens of Utah to contrary. Government of the people, by the people and for the people has become government of the judges, by the judges and for the judges. Mind you, it is the same judiciary that routinely ignores the 10th Amendment, and allows NSA spying despite the 4th Amendment:

    "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

    The true art is finding rights which are unstated in the Constitution while ignoring the ones that are actually there.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 7, 2014 6:40 a.m.

    @lib1: You said a number of things that need correction.

    "counter-majoritarian" -- Wrong. Nationwide, proponents of civil equality are the majority. This, by the way, is in part thanks to patently unreasonable, winner-take-all tactics, like Amendment 3.

    "hip, urbane" -- Dude. I'm in my 60's. I'm a Quaker. I've been married for most of my life to the one and only woman for me. The 17th Century religious testimonies I follow are Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community and Equality. So, now I'm "hip?"

    "religious freedom" -- What about mine?

    "proponents of traditional marriage" -- Sorry. You must have meant, "virulent opponents of LGBT civil rights." Your market-tested PR phraseology isn't cutting it anymore. We see you.

    "bullying" -- Ha. Sure. You're also "bullied" by common civility into not using the N-word in public.

    "ugly, coercive" -- We live in a civil society. If you insult or threaten others, others are free to point this out. If you commit actions that violate laws, you must accept the consequences. If you violate your employer's policies, ditto.

    "live and let live" -- You know? If you'd only do this yourself, your imagined difficulties would disappear.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    July 7, 2014 7:10 a.m.

    @LL;

    Your god is irrelevant and has no business in our laws. Period. The First Amendment, remember?

    @RBB;

    LGBT citizens are also "we the people", in case you've forgotten. It doesn't matter how many of you "voted" on our rights, YOU DID NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO DO SO.

    As for rights that are "actually there" in the Constitution, the 14th Amendment clearly states that ALL citizens are to be treated equally by the government; not just heterosexual citizens.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 7, 2014 7:12 a.m.

    Our country is not "divided" because abortion is legal, or that same sex marriage may soon be legal in all 50 states.

    Our country is "divided" because a rather noisy minority can not accept that their vision of God and religion trump that of most of us. Most of us know that abortion is a sad choice for women, and that choice should be between them, their family, their medical profession and their vision of the divinity. No one forces anyone to have an abortion. And most of us know that same sex marriage is about civil equality, and that not all religions see it as a perversity. No one is forced to get gay married. Both are choices.

    Unless those who fail to see that there is a distinct difference between the liberty of the individual to pursue their choices outside of another's religious perspectives, we will have a "divided" country.

  • Stormwalker Cleveland , OH
    July 7, 2014 8:09 a.m.

    @Light and Liberty:

    "Slavery was wrong despite any sources cited about the bible..."

    "Excuses to the contrary, God doesn't change His Word and conscience can't be eradicated easily!"

    For generations Christians used the Bible to justify slavery, and, after the Civil War, to justify segregation and Jim Crow for another century.

    You say that, despite clear Bible passages supporting slavery, today "everybody knows" that they were wrong.

    You then state, without any sense of irony, that citing Bible passages against gay people and same gender marriage is absolutely correct "because God doesn't change..."

    That was said before the Civil War. That was said after the war. That was said through the Civil Right era and a decade beyond.

    One thing you are right about. Bigots continued to claim "God said" on race for a century after the end of slavery in this country. And like-minded people will continue to say "God said" on gay marriage for decades after we have marriage equality.

    And, in a few decades, virtually everyone will be saying that "everybody knows" anti-Gay bigotry is wrong, no matter what the bible-thumpers say.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 7, 2014 9:06 a.m.

    We are a nation of laws. The problem with that statement is that all the laws were made by men. The fallacy of the argument is that the men who made the first laws, which we tend to consider as sacred, lived in a different world than we do today.

    Many organizations and businesses have constitutions, mission statements, and rules set down at their origination. But few of those would let the original rules govern their actions in a new and different world. Even religious organizations are changeable when the need becomes important to their survival.

    Those who would ram the words of the original law down our throats are more concerned with the words themselves rather than their intent. And their goal is not peace on earth and good will toward men, but the racking up of power and wealth.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 7, 2014 9:47 a.m.

    Re: "Your god is irrelevant and has no business in our laws."

    Yeah -- apparently only secular, liberal [anti]gods have any place in our laws.

    And, it's clear that their followers adhere to the dogma that the price of these deities' favor is snarky, accusatory, often unintelligible, always counter-intuitive sophistry, regarding belief in any other deity.

  • Stormwalker Cleveland , OH
    July 7, 2014 10:35 a.m.

    @procuradorfiscal:

    We are a constitutional republic, not a theocracy.

    Laws are based on reason. Different people may have different views, leading to debate and compromise. But reason is still the base of the laws passed.

    Reason does not include:
    "God said..."
    "The Bible says..."
    "It is a sin..."

    Your opinions are welcome. We don't, however, have to accept or even acknowledge your particular brand of mythology or claims that your myths are "real" or a basis for public policy and law.

    If you wonder why, take a look at the current events in the Middle East.

    From here the difference between the new Islamic State and the radical right is narrow and getting narrower as time goes by. The recent Hobby Lobby decision and the subsequent rulings in the days after show, in my opinion, how close we are to sliding down the very slippery slope into theocracy.

    And, by the way, remember that GLBT citizens are 2% of the population, much like Jews and Latter-day Saints.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    July 7, 2014 10:38 a.m.

    procuradorfiscal,

    You puzzle me. If, as you seem to profess, you are a member of a monotheistic religion that believes in God, you should know that there is only one God. To not believe this in your heart and soul is sacrilege. No matter how anyone else worships or doesn't worship, your belief should not waver. There are no other gods. If someone worships God by some other name or names, in your heart you should know that that is the same God, the one and only God. If they see multiple nature spirits, or a pantheon of lesser gods, you should know in your heart that they are worshiping the one and only God, although they see Him in many separate aspects.

    As a monotheist, the burden and responsibility is on us to believe only in Him, and not to worry how others see or do not see Him. Even atheists live under His loving Grace, whether they know it or not. It is our responsibility to believe that, and to love our brothers and sisters, as He loves them.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 7, 2014 11:24 a.m.

    We can discuss the merits of a gay/homosexual lifestyle AFTER they are treated equal before the law.

    Unless those opposed to their rights can show harm to society, we have no right to deny them the rights everyone else enjoys.

    "All children are entitled to be raised by their mother and father" That is a great and novel idea, but reality differs. Many homes are destroyed by divorce, some children are placed in foster care because of abuse or neglect. Single mother's do not have their children taken away, and they can even adopt. So this idea is inconsistent at best. Studies have shown that same sex couples can and do raise healthy, productive children; just like hetero couples can produce unhealthy, unproductive children.

    Religious objections cannot be used under the first amendment. Congress (and by extension the States under the 14 amendment) cannot favor one religion over another. Some teach it is alright, others condemn it. All are free to preach their points of view. If you believe we are turning into Sodom and Gomorrah, start preaching and thumping your Bible. Doctrine and Covenants teaches us to use "persuasion...or Amen to your Priesthood".

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    July 7, 2014 11:53 a.m.

    Today's Washington Post published the article : "Children of same-sex couples are happier and healthier than peers, research shows" based on a recently research conducted by the University of
    Melbourne, Australia.

    Since the State of Utah's based most of their position on the welfare of children, I wonder how a study like this will affect Utah's argument against SSM.

    I also wonder if the AG Office and the Governor of Utah will be objective enough when considering all evidence for and against their claims.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    July 7, 2014 12:09 p.m.

    @procuradorfiscal
    "one or two corrupt activist jurists in the federal judiciary…"

    Your math skills are really failing, there are 20+ separated court rulings, an unbroken streak, not just "one or two" in favor of SSM, and not even one of these rulings are on your side.

    Some of those "activist judges" are appointed by Republican presidents; some, like Judge Shelby, Judge Jones III were praised by conservative Senators like Mike Lee and Rick Santorum. That fact itself is already very telling.

    @Light and Liberty

    I would like to respond your reply, but Stormwalker already had a very good rebuttal. So you go ahead and dispute that first.

    But you did not answer my question: It is comical that you put slavery is wrong and states' rights in the same passage. Don't you know people in the South used to claim that slavery and segregation are states' rights?

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 7, 2014 1:21 p.m.

    Everyone needs marriage - including LGBT. By opposing same sex marriage the Deseret News perpetuates the maladjustment of this population. They feel forced to try conventional marriage often to the destruction of all involved. The Deseret News perpetuates the pain these people (and their loved ones) feel continually. Think about the suicide rate in this population which exists in large part because they believe they can never "fit." You're going to lose this debate. If you could retreat, allowing same sex marriage, it would be an act of great charity. Please think these things over carefully.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 7, 2014 1:56 p.m.

    Re: HIGV " Some people may struggle with same gender attraction. Don't need to act on it."

    You don't understand that homosexuality is a natural state. You don't understand this any better than people of your persuasion understand the origins of race.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 7, 2014 3:33 p.m.

    Gambling is legal - I do not feel my religion is threatened.
    Drinking is legal - I do not feel my religion is threatened.
    Smoking is legal - I do not feel my religion is threatened.
    Coffee is legal - I do not feel my religion is threatened.
    Tea is legal - I do not feel my religion is threatened.

    Coke-a-Cola is legal,
    Bikinis are leagal,
    ear piercings are legal,
    tatoos are legal,
    open toed-sandals are legal,
    shopping on Sunday is legal,

    Look, my point is there many things MY relgion disagrees with which are legal,
    and none of them are threatening my Religious convictions at all.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 7, 2014 9:37 p.m.

    @Marxist People have actually changed there orientation, and many people that suffered from ssa are happily married. As many people have left faithful spouses and went with a partner. Not everyone chooses to change but regardless of Orientation you can control your behavior same as you can choose not to get angry, steal or watch pornography.,

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    July 8, 2014 5:23 a.m.

    higv,

    You said, "People have actually changed there orientation" This is largely a myth. What we do know is this:

    Some people are not strictly heterosexual or homosexual, but bisexual.

    Bisexuality is not necessarily 50-50 hetero/homo, but can be 80-20 to 20-80.

    Female sexuality is more fluid than male, perhaps due in part to the role of arousal in male sexual performance.

    The "success stories" you cling to are probably 35-65 cases who can make do with the 35% of their nature that's heterosexual, although one wonders who they're fantasizing about during sex, and whether that's either fair to their partners or a formula for long-term success.

    And, as far as "controlling behavior" goes, that's called celibacy (not a natural human condition, although valuable to the Catholic priesthood).

    Actual homosexual males are no more fluid or flexible in their sexuality than actual heterosexual males. "Struggling with SSA," is a peculiar phrase, one I've only heard used by Mormons. Psychoanalysts would say, "struggling with self-acceptance," which is more to the point. Marriage equality should make the latter easier.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 8, 2014 6:14 a.m.

    higv

    I think being homosexual is a bit different from watching porn. I know you would not agree, but most of us do.

    Yeah, you can marry someone of the opposite sex if you are homosexual. You might even act like a heterosexual. However, you are still probably gay on the inside. And that probably leads to a less than perfect union with an opposite sex mate. It is a cheat. The spouse of the "reformed" gay will never have a complete union, since he/she is never the true subject of sexual attraction.

    Let it go. Gays and lesbians can make great families and raise great kids. It is your religious preference to be a Mormon or a Methodist. Ever consider changing that if you let go your prejudice against homosexuals? It is a choice after all.

  • Tiago Seattle, WA
    July 8, 2014 9:00 a.m.

    @HIGV - re: "People have actually changed there orientation"
    There is no therapy or spiritual fix that will change people who are fundamentally exclusively attracted to men to become fundamentally attracted exclusively to women.
    Gay men can be celibate or choose to marry a woman and try to make it work, but there is no evidence that fundamental orientation can be changed.

    2011 - Warren Throckmorton, Professor of Psychology, former supporter of Sexual Orientation Change Therapy stated: "Whatever else is true, it is hard for me to see these situations as categorical (gay to straight) changes. The changes were certainly perceived to be beneficial but if words have any meaning, these descriptions cannot be considered as a “complete change in orientation.” The participants views of themselves and their behavior have changed but they continue to disclose attraction to the same sex."

    2012 - Alan Chambers, President of the largest "Ex-gay" organization, Exodus International apologized for the previous Exodus slogan "Change Is Possible" and stated: "The majority of people that I have met, and I would say the majority meaning 99.9% of them have not experienced a change in their orientation." Exodus closed in 2013.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    July 8, 2014 5:07 p.m.

    This shouldn't even need to be decided by law! If people would actually live their religion and have love for their fellow man, this would not be an issue! You know, after living for fifty years, I know enough about myself to realize that there is nothing wrong with me because I am gay! If others choose to treat me like I am anything less than what they are, then that is their choice, but I want to say that it is bogus! There is no need to treat us like people do and we deserve the same rights as others! Yeah, people forget the basic concept of their faith, which is love! Maybe a few people should look at the 11th article of faith and ask yourself if it applies to gay people! We have a right to worship God how we feel is right and you know what, I think God would agree.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    July 9, 2014 8:12 a.m.

    @higv;

    No, NOBODY has "changed their sexual orientation". They can hide it, suppress it, smash it into itty bitty bits, but they can NOT change it. Seriously, if you think that it is so easy to "change your sexual orientation", why don't you give it a try for a year and let us know how well you succeed. I can testify to you that I tried for over 30 years to change and it isn't possible.

    And we do not "suffer" from ssa; it isn't a disease, nor is it a horrible thing.