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Drew Clark: Lawrence and Windsor won't trump Utah marriage laws

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  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 12:49 a.m.

    One of the reasons I remain troubled by the Deseret News' position is that I don't see how different marriage laws from state to state can be managed in the "United" States. Say an SSM couple moves from a state allowing SSM to Utah. What happens to their social security survivorship rights? Say they entered into contractual arrangements in the state of origin as a couple, are those contracts, say for a house or car, now null and void? What about pension and/or 401K survivor benefits? Are they then shredded? This doesn't even get to the disruption involved if there are any kids involved.

    I believe two systems of marriage will break up the United States. We are now the owners of the world's #2 economy - I think we should hang together.

    I'm happy to hear any and all thoughts on this critical matter.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 27, 2014 12:57 a.m.

    Okay, let's kick your can for a minute. If states get decide who gets to call themselves married, as you maintain, is anyone entitled to be legally married outside the state that they were married in? Does any adjacent state have to recognise any Utah marriage? Marriage is just contract law, and it should be recognised nation wide. Any other concept will just make it worse.

  • Mage Springville, UT
    July 27, 2014 1:26 a.m.

    I see where you are coming from Drew, but I wonder if the Supreme Court isn't playing chess while Utah leadership plays checkers? I believe key members of the Supreme Court want to rule on Kitchen v. Herbert, and they don't want Utah to drop our appeal like other Republican States did when they came to the conclusion their cases would fail on higher appeal. SCOTUS is simply granting stays now in order to reel us in. The Supreme Court has struck down state defined marriage before when they found certain state definitions of marriage to be discriminatory (Loving v. Virginia). Utah once had a law defining marriage as between a man and woman of the same race only - but it was unconstitutional. This Kitchen v. Herbert case bears too many similarities to Loving to realistically expect the Supreme Court to uphold Utah's current definition of marriage. With all due respect to you as an opinion writer, over 20 state and federal judges trained in constitutional law, and of both political parties have ruled in disagreement with you in just the last 6 months alone (at least one of those judges - Judge Kimball - was a BYU Law graduate).

  • SAS Sandy, UT
    July 27, 2014 2:10 a.m.

    Funny, it seems the federal government had no trouble at all trumping Utah's marriage laws....back around 1887 or so.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 27, 2014 3:16 a.m.

    From the piece: "Changing a core aspect of marriage cannot be forced upon a state under the guise of the 14th Amendment."

    This is flat our wrong as the Supreme Court ruled in Loving v Virginia.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    July 27, 2014 4:04 a.m.

    "What happens if the Supreme Court upholds Utah’s marriage laws?"

    The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.

  • liberal larry salt lake City, utah
    July 27, 2014 6:31 a.m.

    "What happens if the Supreme Court upholds Utah’s marriage laws?"

    I can tell you exactly what will happen. Utah will strut, and crow about the wonderfulness of their moral victory, but the celebration will be short lived.

    Large corporations, and high tech firms will slowly cross Utah off of their lists of eligible spots to do business with, and Utah business leaders will be in a panic.

    Utah's legislators will quietly find a way to reverse Utah's discriminatory laws, or face the prospect of becoming an economic, and social backwater.

  • Hugh1 Denver, CO
    July 27, 2014 6:54 a.m.

    Don't hold your breath Drew, same sex marriage is a matter of when, not if in Utah. The courts ruled that Utah's same sex marriage ban was unconstitutional. They also granted two stays: 1. on implementing decisions overturning Utah's ban on gay marriage. 2. on recognition of gay marriages that took place under the ban. Lawrence ('03) reversed a ruling allowing states to regulate bedroom activity, "Bowers ('86) was not correct when it was decided, and it is not correct today." Even if Justice Scalia wrangles a victory (coalition with Thomas, Alito, Roberts, and Kennedy), it will likely be reversed within a decade or two as it was in Lawrence. Utah's ban fundamentally conflicts with the 14th amendment, and in order to fulfill this anti-gay marriage fantasy in-perpetuity, the court would need to undo Loving v. Virginia and refined equal protection. Radical elements on this court, led by Scalia, will do handstands to comply with your wish, but they are fighting precedent and the tide of history. This argument seem more geared to the benefits of a theocracy than the need to follow the equal protection provisions of the 14th amendment.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 27, 2014 7:16 a.m.

    If your opinion on the matter would carry the majority in a Supreme Court ruling, how do you reconcile one state allowing same sex marriage and another not. Aren't states required to recognize legal acts of another? Do you wish for state A to refuse to recognize state B's acts, in a pique of anger over SSM? It could happen, you know. Some states are controlled by quite liberal/progressive governors, legislators and electorates who just might take that step.

    Another good argument against this gentleman's opinion might be the Catholic church. It is against Church dogma to divorce. Yet the Catholic church is forced to recognize and deal with civil divorce. The Catholic church has been in business for a long time, and maybe the good people of Utah ought to emulate the Catholic church and reconcile themselves with the fact that same sex marriage will become quite common, and may indeed become the law of the land.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 27, 2014 7:20 a.m.

    Another thing, Mr. Clark.

    You have said: "Our constitutional rights to life, liberty and property do not require anyone, let alone the state, to publicly recognize private acts. A truer live-and-let-live attitude permits consensual private activity without coercing public acceptance."

    Is not the argument that atheists and other non-believers make for Christmas symbols and other forms of Christian observances? If you wish to be consistent in your views, please work your way out of that conundrum.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    July 27, 2014 7:22 a.m.

    Dear Drew Clark:

    I hope with all my heart that you are right. I can't imagined any justification for imposing this so-called "right" on the people of this state or any other.

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    July 27, 2014 7:42 a.m.

    As usual, the DN gets the case wrong. This isn't about states' rights. If gay people are citizens of the United States, how can they be denied something as fundamental as the right to marry? You seem to suggest that Utah can pick and choose what rights it's going to allow gay citizens to have. Doesn't work that way.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    July 27, 2014 7:55 a.m.

    Unless I'm missing something, I'm pretty sure that there is no requirement that a married couple ever consummate their union, and thanks to Lawrence v. Texas, two unmarried people can have sex as long as they can both legally consent. Regardless of the assumptions we naturally make, where's the valid basis for tying in sexual activity to marriage?

    And the DN's editorial staff grows ever more desperate...

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:05 a.m.

    "The Supreme Court on July 18 ruled in favor of Utah..."

    No they did not. They simply granted a request to wait.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:19 a.m.

    I agree that it would be productive to consider what happens if the Supreme Court upholds Amendment 3. As Mr. Clark points out, some states will likely vote to allow same-sex marriage. Will Utah give full faith and credit to a marriage performed in a state where it was democratically allowed? Suppose someone married in that state moves here to teach at a public university and eventually retires and dies. Under federal law, the surviving spouse would be entitled to Social Security benefits. Would the state of Utah pay survivor retirement benefits?

  • Bill McGee Alpine, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:30 a.m.

    So far, in every legal challenge in every single state, US District Courts have ruled that state constitutional bans on same sex marriage violate the 14th amendment and are therefore unconstitutional. Casting aspersions on those who support this action by labeling them as the "intellectual elite" will not change the fact that opponents to this trend have not yet won a single case in a Federal court. If you want other precedence, look no further than the US Supreme Court throwing out Utah's anti-miscegenation amendment in 1963. There is clear precedent for the Supreme Court to insert themselves into state laws on marriage. (For those of you not "intellectually elite" enough, Utah had a law banning mixed race marriages that the Supreme Court threw out as unconstitutional.)

    Finally, why was it necessary to label those who support same sex marriage as the "intellectual elite?" Name-calling dampens rather than encourages dialogue, and it retrenches thinking by labeling those who disagree as "other." For someone who is the opinion editor of a regional newspaper, you should understand that name calling is not the same thing as building an argument.

  • southmtnman Provo, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:33 a.m.

    "Marriage...binds a child to a mother and a father".

    No, it doesn't.

    Children are "bound" to their mothers and fathers even when there is no marriage. Adoption, custody, and guardianship legally "bind" children to parents. Custody and guardianship are often, but not always, implicit in marriage.

    Convoluting parenthood and marriage is a common but red herring tactic used by those who oppose marriage equality.

  • ChuckGG Gaithersburg, MD
    July 27, 2014 8:36 a.m.

    Nice try and an interesting premise, but I don't see it flying. Civil marriage has been considered a contract for a very long time. And while you would want the religious interpretation of the reasoning behind marriage to enter into the argument, it does not. People of all exceptions legally marry.

    Furthermore, two straight atheists can go to City Hall, obtain a marriage license, be married by a judge, with no mention of religion, and that couple's marriage is recognized by that state, all states, the Feds, and all other countries. Perhaps, a number of religions would not recognize such a marriage but as we are talking about legal matters, who really cares about the opinion of some (and certainly not all) religions?

    No, like it or not, this is a legal matter (as we are speaking of civil law) and the issue will be resolved in the courts.

    As far as your claimed "victory" by obtaining a stay, I agree with Mage, and it has been a discussion among many friends. Wouldn't it be ironic that a conservative state such as Utah be the SCOTUS case that wins marriage equality for the country?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:39 a.m.

    Wow, I know you believe in your cause, but this borders on fantasy. It proves that a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing. I don't know how the current Supreme Court will rule, particularly as it is more political now than ever, but the rationale in this piece is really shaky and is more wishful thinking.

    A couple of additional comments. I ask you, how have the gay marriages that have been performed here in Utah and in other places changed a single, solitary thing? How has your life been impacted? How have your family and children been harmed? Can you even tell a difference? I'm betting it's more of a concept than reality, all of the sky is falling talk. Second, calling SSM proponents things like "cultural elitists" is showing desperation and immaturity. It's just not true, nor is it fair to slam the majority of Americans who have no problem with it.

  • LeDoc SLC, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:41 a.m.

    It seems that some who want to loudly proclaim they are against SSM are merely acting out as modern day Pharisees. It's as though the statement demonstrates how "worthy" they are. If though one actually believes in eternity, why spend so muc; time worrying over a non-eternal matter? We line in a world where genocidal actions are commonplace. We also ignore poisoning the planet because after all, we need more billionaires. It seems like we have forgotten who our neighbor is and, that we are supposed to love them; regardless of who they love.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 27, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    You can't compare interracial marriage to same gender marriage as interracial marriage always has been between people of the opposite gender and there are biological differences between a man and a woman for a reason. No real biological differences besides skin color and some physical characteristics among races. @Marxist of course the US cannot function on two different systems of marriage that is why redefining something that always has been between a man and a woman will hurt society in the long run. Marriage always has between a man and a woman.

  • TheWalker Saratoga Springs, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:47 a.m.

    I would certainly hope that the Supreme Court upholds state's rights. What we have been seeing of late is courts running roughshod over the democratic principles upon which this nation was founded.

  • nonceleb Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:48 a.m.

    You are treating two stays as major court ruling victories? A stay is not a ruling on the case. It just puts it on hold until the Court can either make a ruling or not take it at all and let the lower court ruling stand. The problem is the provisions of Amendment 3. If just defining traditional marriage the amendment might have had a chance. But it goes too far. It also bans civil unions or domestic partnerships of any kind which provide marriage benefits and refuses to recognize same-sex marriages performed in states where it is legal.

  • Jimmytheliberal Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 8:59 a.m.

    Sorry Drew...Loving vs Virginia.

  • Berkeley reader Berkeley , CA
    July 27, 2014 9:06 a.m.

    Mr. Clark asserts that marriage's "public" nature is the reason why same-sex couples will not be allowed to marry. He gets that backwards! Because civil marriage is precisely a "public" act associated with multiple state and federal benefits and responsibilities, the courts will rule that tax-paying, law-abiding same sex couples cannot be barred from entering it.

    Utah should get ready for this new reality.

  • ElmoBaggins Escalante, UT
    July 27, 2014 9:49 a.m.

    Temporary stay does not a victory make!The writing is on the wall,Utah,and it ain't in your favor...

  • BJMoose Syracuse, UT
    July 27, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    At this time there are 26 responses. Two of them hope the writer is correct. Two of them agree with the writer. The other 22 disagree with the writer. I've come to refer to these anti-SSM op-eds as the desperation editorial of the week. We'll see how the responses trend later this afternoon.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 10:16 a.m.

    Issuing a stay is not the same as supporting the underlying issue. The only thing the stay tends to indicate is probably that it wouldn't be a unanimous decision which I don't think any of us expected anyway.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 27, 2014 10:36 a.m.

    Calling others "Intellectual elite?"

    That screams desperation to me.

    The radical right seems to identify liberals, minorities, feminists, Hollywood actors, the media, and intellectual elitists as enemies to their ultra-conservative agenda.

    Some advice I would give: if you are ever called an intellectual elitist, you should consider that a compliment and not an insult.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    July 27, 2014 10:41 a.m.

    Many comments have already identified the flaws in this argument. I would add that states don't sanction individual marriages, but rather they sanction the institution of marriage. If the former were true, I believe this would make states liable for allowing marriages they knew/should’ve known would lead to harm (e.g., marriages involving child abusers or those with a history of domestic violence).

    As for the claim that SSM is being forced on the states, this strikes me as the bully who starts the fight and then cries "victim" when he thinks he's going to lose. Opponents have brought this upon themselves and it's disappointing to see them fail to take responsibility for what they have wrought. It's even more disappointing to watch them refuse to acknowledge the evidence that proves their beliefs are not supported by the facts.

    Religion claims to improve people in character and in deed. It purports to be a bastion of integrity and truth. IMO, religion is not a "thing" in itself, but merely a reflection of the people who follow it. This debate has not reflected well on some.

  • David Lloyd-Jones Toronto, 00
    July 27, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    Drew Lewis engages in a currently popular dance, shouting about religious liberty while demanding that the state enforce his religious views upon other people.

    The dance involves a childishly simple contortion, the confusion of "allow," "enforce," "permit," and forbid, and a variety of other pairs of opposites. It also involves a fast-step, the quick hiding of who does what with whom.

    State don't marry, People marry. Churches solemnise marriages. Secular states register marriages. The Drew Lewis dance hides these facts behind a modest skirt, the skirting of the Constitution and of all dictionaries.

    The right of people to marry, one of those unenumerated rights "reserved to the people" in the excellent U.S. Constitution, does not marry people, does not force people to marry, does not interfere with any traditional forms of marriage.

    Drew Lewis' dance is simple, and attractive to people who like that sort of thing.

    Sadly he can't pull it off in the United States of America.

    Try Russia maybe, Drew.

    -dlj.

  • EstoPerpetua Holden, MA
    July 27, 2014 10:47 a.m.

    American has been successful because we are a nation of laws which are based on civil content. This is why church and state must be kept separate. Otherwise we would be having religious wars such as countries in the Middle East. State Governments need to make decisions based on civil thinking that grants equal rights to all of their citizens, just like they charge equal taxes to all of their citizens, fair is fair.

  • jeclar2006 Oceanside, CA
    July 27, 2014 11:15 a.m.

    The Utah staunch defense of 'traditional' marriage is obscenely ironic, given that Reynolds vs US of 1878 was exactly the same sort of 'majority' vs 'minority', were the 'majority' at the time in the US, and where there were no dissenting opinion from the Supreme Court, believed 'plural marriage' was morally wrong.

    It would seem that a new 'precept' has been practiced, 'do unto others, as has been done unto you'.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    July 27, 2014 11:28 a.m.

    Our religious beliefs and societal traditions are vital to the fabric of society. Though each faith, minister, and individual can define marriage for themselves, at issue here are laws that act outside that protected sphere. Once the government defines marriage and attaches benefits to
    that definition, it must do so constitutionally. It cannot impose a traditional or faith-based limitation upon a public right without a sufficient justification for it. Assigning a religious
    or traditional rationale for a law, does not make it constitutional when that law discriminates against a class of people without other reasons.

    The beauty of our Constitution is that it accommodates our individual faith’s definition of marriage while preventing the government from unlawfully treating us differently. This is hardly
    surprising since it was written by people who came to America to find both freedom of religion and freedom from it.

    Judge John G. Heyburn
    in Bourke v Beshear (3:13-CV-750-H)
    February 14, 2014
    -------

    "As far as this Court is concerned, no one should be fooled; it is just a matter of listening and waiting for the other shoe."

    Justice Antonin Scalia
    United States v Windsor
    (CV12-307, June 26, 2013)

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    July 27, 2014 11:46 a.m.

    What does the 14th Amendment's "privileges and immunities," "due process," and "equal protection" clauses really mean?

    If these Constitutional clauses mean states cannot make laws against SSM, it also means states cannot make laws against any other type of marriage such as polygamy, incestuous relations, etc. It's not all that complicated.

    The State of Utah and many other states have made laws dealing with marriage: All citizens can marry provided they marry someone that is not already married, of legal age, not closely related, and of the opposite sex. This law applies to all. And it applies equally to all. It's not all that complicated.

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 27, 2014 11:52 a.m.

    "Unlike sexual relations, marriage is a public act, not a private act."

    This is a very good point. I have often read others opinion about how we heterosexuals shouldn't care what is going on in someones bedroom and I don't. As stated in the article the laws that barred homosexuals their freedom to do whatever they please in their private bedroom.

    Marriage laws deal with the public space.

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 27, 2014 11:54 a.m.

    @ Marxist

    "What happens to their social security survivorship rights?"

    To your question I will ask another. How long is social security actually going to be around for? I don't count on it for when I retire.

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 27, 2014 11:58 a.m.

    @ liberal larry

    "Large corporations, and high tech firms will slowly cross Utah off of their lists of eligible spots to do business with...."

    And that would be a bad thing because?

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 27, 2014 1:17 p.m.

    @Esquire

    "I ask you, how have the gay marriages that have been performed here in Utah and in other places changed a single, solitary thing? How has your life been impacted? How have your family and children been harmed?"

    Actually the burden of proof is upon you because you all are the ones trying to change things.

    The burden is upon you to show how things haven't changed.

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    July 27, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    "The Supreme Court on July 18 ruled in favor of Utah"

    Your side has lost every single case since the Windsor ruling last June, and lost virtually every case since 2003. All your side has won are a few temporary stays which are part of ordinary due process, and even there the lower courts have found that there's no legitimate reason to grant a stay. No surprise that the supreme court didn't explain why it granted a stay, given that it wasn't actually warranted on the merits.

    "Yet too many people causally connect decriminalization of sodomy and recognition of same-sex marriage."

    Once the state can no longer criminalize homosexuality it has no rational basis to deny gays equal protection of the law in other areas. Nor can it deny gays a fundamental right like marriage, much less dictate which consenting adult they might marry.

    The state has no more legitimate interest in the relative gender of one's spouse than it does the relative race of one's spouse, and Utah has been unable to demonstrate any legitimate interest much less a compelling one.

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    July 27, 2014 1:55 p.m.

    @higv "You can't compare interracial marriage to same gender marriage"

    Really? I'm in a mixed-race marriage and have straight kids and a gay kid. It seems obvious to me that my gay daughter should have the same civil rights which her sisters enjoy and which my wife and I enjoy. To do otherwise is immoral and blatantly unconstitutional, no different from a few decades ago when my own marriage was banned in Utah and in the confederate states.

    "interracial marriage always has been between people of the opposite gender and there are biological differences between a man and a woman for a reason."

    Your side will have to prove to a court how those "biological differences" matter in regards to a legal contract about kinship rights and property rights. So far Utah has utterly failed to do so, as have all the other states which ban same-sex marriage. It also sounds like you might have confused marriage with procreation, or are unaware that neither one is necessary for the other. Or is it that you simply want to harm the children who are raised by gay couples?

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    July 27, 2014 2:01 p.m.

    @wrz "If these Constitutional clauses mean states cannot make laws against SSM, it also means states cannot make laws against any other type of marriage such as polygamy, incestuous relations, etc."

    That's the exact same argument the racists of the south made against mixed-race marriage 50 years ago. And just like you, they were flat wrong.

    "It's not all that complicated."

    Correct. All you need to deny polygamy or incestuous relations is a simple rational basis. For polygamy, administrative complexity is sufficient to deny it.

  • David Lloyd-Jones Toronto, 00
    July 27, 2014 2:02 p.m.

    Memo to Self:

    Drew Clark, not Lewis, David.

    I think maybe the very thought of Utah and the West makes you get these two good explorers mixed up.

    -dlj.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 27, 2014 2:21 p.m.

    @KarenR actually people in favor of so called same gender marriage have been the ones bringing it up. Gay people have existed for a long time why are they just now finding the right to marry someone of the same gender? It is them trying to redefine marriage what God has not let his children redefine. And even if all the mortal judges overturn votes it will not be right in the site of the Great Judge and people who try to redefine it will have to answer to him. It will have long term effects on society in future generations. Or it will collapse under the weight of it's own iniquity since the person who wants us to be miserable does not support those that listen to him in the end when he has them under his grasp.

  • John Howard Arlington, MA
    July 27, 2014 3:05 p.m.

    No state should recognize or allow same-sex marriage. Congress needs to resolve this debate for the whole country, as the Full Faith and Credit clause directs, with a general law that prescribes the effect of marriage as "approving and allowing the couple to conceive offspring together" and under the commerce clause, a law that prohibits creating a person except by joining a man and a woman's gametes.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 27, 2014 3:18 p.m.

    There's a lot of rhetoric coming from the 1.6% of the people of the United States who engage in same-sex sex. They want us to think that everybody favors same-sex sex, that tolerance for it should be taught in every school, starting in kindergarten.

    The family is the foundation of society. What is taught in the home determines how the children will conduct themselves when they leave the home. There are many who tell us that God is not part of their lives and that any argument that cites God or scripture cannot be used against them because they reject God. That is my greatest concern about those who reject God's doctrine of marriage and of family. Those who reject those principles will teach their children to reject God and to laugh at religion. Will that harm society? Ask those nations who rejected God. Ask a Russian what family life was like under Communism. Ask about their suicide rate.

    The Court will examine the effect of letting 1.6% of the population change the basic unit of society. If they are wise, they will rule that traditional marriage is best for all concerned.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    July 27, 2014 3:24 p.m.

    @marxist:
    "...I don't see how different marriage laws from state to state can be managed in the 'United' States."

    Federal law (see DOMA) prohibits denying federal rights to SSM couples (such as filing a joint income tax return) regardless of where they reside. However, where states deny SSM, state rights accorded to heterosexual couples (such as filing a joint income tax return) will still be denied SSM couples.

    States have something like that now. A doctor, CPA, etc., licensed in one state cannot practice his/her trade in another state where they are not licensed.

    @skrekk:
    "That's the exact same argument the racists of the south made against mixed-race marriage 50 years ago. And just like you, they were flat wrong."

    No, no. Flat wrong would be allowing SSM but denying other marriage arrangements such as polygamous and incestuous marriages.

    "All you need to deny polygamy or incestuous relations is a simple rational basis. For polygamy, administrative complexity is sufficient to deny it."

    If administrative complexity is your argument for denial, we perhaps need to shut down most of the complex US government.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    July 27, 2014 3:41 p.m.

    "...It is them trying to redefine marriage what God has not let his children redefine. And even if all the mortal judges overturn votes it will not be right in the site of the Great Judge and people who try to redefine it will have to answer to him. It will have long term effects on society in future generations. Or it will collapse under the weight of it's own iniquity since the person who wants us to be miserable does not support those that listen to him in the end when he has them under his grasp..."

    Exactly the same arguments opponents of interracial marriage use pre-Loving.

  • dev Provo, UT
    July 27, 2014 3:42 p.m.

    At one time marriage laws were intended to legally bind parents to children and hold people responsible for the lives they created. I would like to see our society return to that premise, rather than focusing on marriage as a way to make adults happy. This issue should never have been given to the courts, since marriage is not and never has been a right. It should properly be decided through public discourse and democratic processes. I hope the Supreme Court will recognize that and let the citizens of the states decide how to define it. Concerns about protections for persons who wish to be considered domestic partners can be addressed through civil union legislation.

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    July 27, 2014 4:32 p.m.

    Justice Sotomayor granting Utah a stay should hardly be considered a ruling in Utah's favor. That is quite a twist of logic, isn't it?

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 27, 2014 4:37 p.m.

    You kind of lost me early on in the piece, when you asserted that the Supreme Court, to paraphrase you, "ruled in favor of Utah's LGBT marriage ban." They did no such thing. The case hasn't even been heard on the merits, and may never be.

    All the Supreme Court did was extend Utah the courtesy of a stay until its appeal is heard. That's a very different thing. As to their sentiment on the case, it's hard to say. We don't know if they'll even grant cert. Perhaps they simply repeated their action in Kitchen so as not to appear inconsistent. At this point we don't even know. They haven't explained the reason for either stay.

    I was rather surprised to see that the author has a law degree, but then I noticed he's never practiced law and so perhaps was never even admitted to the bar. Given his propensity for wishful thinking, he'd probably make a great plaintiff's lawyer. Although, given his iffy understanding of how courts rule, he probably shouldn't work on contingency.

  • jeclar2006 Oceanside, CA
    July 27, 2014 4:41 p.m.

    @WRZ
    ---
    If these Constitutional clauses mean states cannot make laws against SSM, it also means states cannot make laws against any other type of marriage such as polygamy, incestuous relations, etc. It's not all that complicated.
    ---

    You realize that in California, first cousins may marry, but for Utah, unless the parties are older than 65, they may not marry.

    There for, a California marriage between first cousins would be invalid in Utah by your reasoning.

    It is not.

    I could extend this to the various states that have different ages of consent, and should a couple visit or move, to Utah, by the same reasoning their marriage would be invalid.

    They are not.

    The prohibition on same sex marriages follows similar lines as the formatter anti-miscengentation laws of yore, where 'blacks' had every 'equal' opportunity to marry another 'black' person, but not a 'white' person.

  • jeclar2006 Oceanside, CA
    July 27, 2014 4:46 p.m.

    @shrekk
    ---
    Correct. All you need to deny polygamy or incestuous relations is a simple rational basis. For polygamy, administrative complexity is sufficient to deny it.
    ---

    A polygamous marriage is no more legally/adminstratively 'complex' than an LLC or other form of 'company' or 'small corporation'. There are rules on the incorporation of such, as well as the dissolution of such. They have been in existence for quite some time, and can easily be amended to deal with matters of 'common property', a marriage concept that has not been universal in the US, but has grown in coverage for the last 100 years, starting mostly with states that were at one time under Spanish Law such as California.

    The only objection that can be raised is some 'moral' objection which reduces essentially to 'we don't like that form of relationship'.

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    July 27, 2014 5:23 p.m.

    Let's not bother to criticize Drew Clark or his positions. No one could believe that anyone in his job is paid to put over his own original thoughts.

    One thought: the DN might be digging in more on the "Federal Government vs poor Utah", because the current President is a Democrat. It reminds me a bit of the "forced by Federal troops to give up polygamy" thing I have read in some comments.

    But I go back to the central thought that no one has mentioned: about 2/3 of the Gay people in Utah are the children and adult children of mormon families.
    When the issue is settled, and the non-mormon Gays have freedom:
    -- How will a mormon Mom and Dad feel, as they marry of most of their kids, and one must be left behind?
    -- How can we, as Christians, tell a person raised to marry that because he/she now realizes they are Gay, to forget having a loving marriage?

    I think God guides events, and He has guided the majority of Americans into seeing the fairness of allowing taxpaying Gay American citizens to have loving marriages.

    States and churches ought to listen better to God,

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 27, 2014 5:24 p.m.

    @higv 2:21pm -- You make an excellent argument that banning SSM is an entirely religious enterprise. Your religious rationale and judgment are perfectly justified in the practice of your chosen religion, assuming your religion permits the rights of judgment and interpretation to you.

    That said, there is the little matter of the US Constitution, which doesn't permit theocracy. Marriage is a government regulated, licensed, and recorded matter. If a churchman solemnizes a marriage without government involvement, that marriage is a legal nullity. Conversely, if a magistrate officiates a marriage without church involvement, that marriage is legally valid.

    All legal marriage being the purview of civil government, and religion not being permitted as a governmental function, you need a clearly civil and rational reason for denying marriage to same-sex couples. Your religious belief not only isn't a rational civil reason, it's completely anathema to my religion, which believes quite the opposite after discerning the true meaning of Jesus' words, actions and teachings. While I'd be happy to argue the theological merits of our respective convictions, marriage remains a completely civil function of government.

  • MDurfee OREM, UT
    July 27, 2014 5:28 p.m.

    This article is right on target. The constitution specifically stated that all rights that are not explicitly granted to the federal government remain with the state. If the federal government can dictate to the states how to define who receives a marriage license, a power which granted to the states, then this will set a precedence that there are no state laws that federal law cannot supercede. The states will be left essentially powerless.

    Furthermore, states, and society in general, have a huge interest in ensuring that social unions (such as traditional marriage) with the potential of producing children (who will provide the next generation of workers and tax-payers to support the economy) are protected and given special status and support. Any union which is intrinsically incapable of producing children provides no benefit for society, and is not entitled to that status.

    Raising children requires a great deal of self-sacrifice, and as society increasingly fails to emphasize the rearing of children as a primary goal and traditional marriage as the fundamental basis of society, birth rates will continue to drop. Falling birthrates bring economic instability and unsustainability. The states therefore have a vested interest in protecting traditional marriage.

  • PJB Newsgram Chicago, IL
    July 27, 2014 5:35 p.m.

    Loving v. Virginia is a persuasive case that many point to in favor of same-sex marriage. One significant distinction is that Loving dealt specifically with race not behavior. The marriage in Loving was completely acceptable other than the race of the people, and thus it was unconstitutional to prevent the marriage. The 14th amendment was intended to prevent discrimination of race, not discrimination of behavior. Merely engaging in or desiring a behavior, which deviates from societal norms, does not make a person a separate race (or something like unto it). Being born a particular race, does not lead to any particular behavior. I love the speech by Martin Luther King, Jr. that a person should be judged by "the content of their character" rather than the color of their skin. In my opinion, the “Civil Rights” movement of today in essence says that whatever a person does is right and that society should be forced to rejoice in whatever behavior a person engages in. The former civil rights movement was a wonderful thing, but this modern civil rights movement is wrong.

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    July 27, 2014 6:00 p.m.

    Now it's later Sunday afternoon, and the grandpas in the small towns have had their Sunday dinners. Time to hit the computer to put in yet another defense for the status quo.

    Again, we hear a comparison between 2 unrelated people in love and incest.
    Again, we hear about polygamy.
    --- Both are completely against public policy and public opinion, while marriage equality has both legal and popular support.

    We hear about the "basic unit of Society" -- in your church, that might be the family, but in US laws, it is one citizen.

    Then we get "Why are they just demanding in now?", which is shot down by the Emancipation Proclamation, Womens' Suffrage, the Civil Rights Movement, Loving v Virginia, etc.

    ALL of it is simply "We don't want those people to sit on our part of the bus"

    Grandpas, please ask the grandkids, or their kids, if "Gay" is still a big deal, or has become a part of everyday life among everyday people.

    Gay people, ask your church to talk to God about the issue.

  • Laura Bilington Maple Valley, WA
    July 27, 2014 7:27 p.m.

    MDurfee, I'm going to assume that you are serious in your statements. May I ask you a few questions?

    Do you think that restricting marriage to straights will make gay people marry opposite sex partners and produce children?

    You wrote, "Any union which is intrinsically incapable of producing children provides no benefit for society, and is not entitled to that status." Do you think that the state should restrict marriages to people with proven fertility? When it is clear that no children will be coming from a marriage (e.g. the woman has had a hysterectomy), should she be forbidden to marry?

    As you have noticed, lots of children are being born in Utah to unmarried mothers. These kids will certainly grow up to be workers who will be supporting the older generation via social security taxes. Along with forbidding gay marriage and encouraging straight couples to procreate more, should we be encouraging single women to have more babies? As I read your concerns, I think the answer is yes, isn't it?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    July 27, 2014 7:36 p.m.

    @ greatbam, I'm asking if anyone notices any changes or differences in their lives because of what two other people do in their own lives. What's this about burden of proof? That makes no sense at all and seems a strange "argument" to fight SSM.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 27, 2014 8:07 p.m.

    Marriage is NOT a right; it is a licensed activity which is controlled by the State. No amount of foot stomping, yelling or rhetoric from the 1.6% who practice same-sex sex will give marriage the status of a right.

    In Utah, before I can open a business, I have to comply with all the laws pertaining to that type of business. No matter how often I tell the clerk that I "feel" like I should be allowed to run a business, the rules apply, not my feelings. Utah's Constitution requires that marriage be between people of the opposite sex. That is the supreme law of the State. Under the law, no licesnse can be issued unless the applicants obey the law - no matter what Judge Shelby thinks.

    We have laws that pertain to all licenses issued by the State. A driver's license isn't issued to anyone just because he/she "feels" that the law should let them drive. Even a lowly fishing license has rules.

    The safety of the family and the children raised in a family require that strict laws be in place to regulate marriage.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 27, 2014 8:38 p.m.

    For anyone who, like the author, doesn't understand the legal argument for permitting SSM, Friday's latest published opinion might be illuminating.

    In that Miami-Dade County ruling, Judge Zabel begins with a quote from the Supreme Court in Loving, without the racial references:

    "To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the . . . classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious . . . discriminations."

    Zabel's decision concludes: "The journey of our Nation towards becoming 'a more perfect Union' does not stop at any particular generation; it is instead a fluid process through every generation."

    I strongly recommend the entire 36-page decision if you want to understand the predominant principles and reasoning of all those courts that shot down SSM bans. Google 14-1661-Decision and choose the one on Scribd.

  • Utefan60 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2014 10:26 p.m.

    Mike Richards, not once in the original Utah Constitution does it mention that marriage is between a man and a woman. The only mention of marriage is that polygamous marriages are forever prohibited. Your letter was not factual. Amendment Three, now disqualified by the courts was the only mention of that.

    I fell you are so bent on stomping your own feet for your cause that you are not being integrate with your facts.

    And again what difference does anyone else's marriage make to you? Only reason I can see is that you are trying to interfere with others inalienable rights.

  • Alfred Phoenix, AZ
    July 27, 2014 11:00 p.m.

    @jeclar2006:
    "You realize that in California, first cousins may marry, but for Utah, unless the parties are older than 65, they may not marry."

    You've totally missed my point... which is: SSM proponents cite the 14th Amendment to justify their position. That same argument can be made to justify all other types of marriage arrangements such as polygamous and incestuous marriages which are currently and discriminatorally illegal.

    @PJB Newsgram:
    "Loving v. Virginia is a persuasive case that many point to in favor of same-sex marriage."

    Loving was wrongfully decided using the 14th Amendment. The 14th simply says that all laws (state/federal) must be equally applied to all citizens. It says nothing about the fairness of a law. For example, if the law says that blacks can't marry whites and is equally applied to all, the equal protection clause has been met.

    If anti black/white marriage laws are considered discriminatory then SCOTUS shoulda remanded the case to the Congress for a law or amendment to fix it. The court has an example to follow where Amendment 21 canceled the 18th regarding the manufacture, sale and transportation of alcoholic beverages.

  • AZKID Mapleton, UT
    July 27, 2014 11:05 p.m.

    Pray for the second coming. It is the only thing that will resolve this.

  • Miss Piggie Phoenix, AZ
    July 27, 2014 11:34 p.m.

    @Bob K:
    "Gay people, ask your church to talk to God about the issue."

    God has been addressed about the issue. The results are spelled out in the Bible which indicates in against His law for men to lie with each other.

    I suppose it would be OK to marry provided they don't lie with each other.

  • John Howard Arlington, MA
    July 28, 2014 12:22 a.m.

    higv asks "Gay people have existed for a long time why are they just now finding the right to marry someone of the same gender?" It's because now stem cell science has advanced to the point that we might be able to have kids without having to pass on our inherited diseases and without having to partner with some yucky girl or boy, but to be able to do it with someone of our same sex.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:25 a.m.

    Mike Richards: no amount of capital letters make your statements true. The court ruled in Loving: "The freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men ... ." It has affirmed that marriage IS a right dozens of times.

  • nycut New York, NY
    July 28, 2014 6:27 a.m.

    The DesNews poorly serves its readers by publishing writers who lack basic understanding of the intersection of human sexuality, marriage, and constitutional jurisprudence.

    The author incorrectly identifies the central legal issue. "Same-sex" marriage is not at issue.

    That the States administer marriage is established. And marriage has been found repeatedly by the Supreme Court to be an inherent right. (Viriginia v Loving, for one)

    So the question at issue is if States can single out gay people and prohibit them, through legislation or popular vote, from this inherent right.

    Further, the Supreme Court has repeated found that moral disapproval alone is insufficient justification for exclusionary laws. (Romer v Evans, for one). A compelling state interest must be demonstrated.

    Yet no arguments to date have done that.

    Rather than attempting to justify their own prejudice, the DesNews should focus their opinions on how its readership can be better citizens, friends and neighbors to the gay families among them, whether married or not, instead of fanning the flames of discontent with "legal" arguments that have no basis in reality.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 28, 2014 6:32 a.m.

    "Over time, some states might democratically change their laws in favor of same-sex marriage. They would also likely ensure protections for religious freedom. In the long run, this result would be better for all."

    Drew;

    Is your own marriage recognized when you move or travel from state to state? Why then should the marriages of LGBT couples not be recognized as well? If you don't have to be single crossing state lines, then you're a hypocrite to demand that LGBT couples do.

    "“Many Americans do not want persons who openly engage in homosexual conduct as ..."

    What does "equal treatment" mean to you, Drew, if not equal treatment?

    "Marriage ... binds a child to a mother and a father.?"

    --- Marriage also joins two people as a legal family, EVEN WITHOUT CHILDREN.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 28, 2014 7:03 a.m.

    UteFan,

    An amendment IS part of the Constitution. The Supreme law of Utah defines marriage as being between a man and a woman. No matter what Judge Shelby says, no matter what you think, no matter what the 10th Court says. It is still part of the Constitution and will be unless the Supreme Court reverses itself (DOMA) and decides that the Federal Goverment has the right to define marriage. The Supreme Sourt has already crossed that bridge. The MAJORITY opinion in DOMA said that the States have the right to define marriage. Judge Shelby used the MINORITY opinion to tell Utah that the State could not define marriage.

    Marriage IS licensed. It is NOT a right. Marriage is NOT listed anywhere in the Constiution; therefore, according to the 10th Amendment, it is an activity that is left to the States or to the People.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 28, 2014 7:20 a.m.

    Mike Richards says:
    "There's a lot of rhetoric coming from the 1.6% of the people of the United States who engage in same-sex sex."

    --- Why are you so focused on "same-sex sex", Mike? Are you not telling us something? All you EVER think about relating to marriage for LGBT couples is the "sex".

    "The family is the foundation of society."

    --- We are also families, Mike. Just because our familes don't look like yours is no reason to discriminate against our families.

    "Ask those nations who rejected God. "

    --- Your "god" is no more relevant than any other god in our societies laws. If that weren't so, your god would be our state god, which he is not.

    @dev;

    At one time marriage was intended to merge two fortunes together. Do you long for those "good old days" too?

    "I hope the Supreme Court will recognize that and let the citizens of the states decide how to define it. "

    --- What if the "state" decided to not recognize Mormon marriages? Would you allow states to do that?

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 28, 2014 7:20 a.m.

    @MDurfee;

    The 10th amendments PROHIBITS states from violating other clauses in the Constitution. What does "prohibit" mean to you?

    "... are protected and given special status ...".

    --- And you guys claim that we're the ones asking for "special rights". Hah!

    @AZKID;

  • BJMoose Syracuse, UT
    July 28, 2014 7:45 a.m.

    From Mike Richards: "There's a lot of rhetoric coming from the 1.6% of the people of the United States who engage in same-sex sex. They want us to think that everybody favors same-sex sex... The Court will examine the effect of letting 1.6% of the population change the basic unit of society. If they are wise, they will rule that traditional marriage is best for all concerned."
    Mike it isn't just the 1.6% you reference. The latest ABC/Wn. Post poll from 5-29 to 6-1 shows 56% favor SSM with 38% opposing. The latest Gallup poll from 5-8 to 5-11 show 55% for and 42% against. It isn't just the 1.6%. It is the majority of all Americans including myself (male) and my wife (female) who have been married 35 years and counting. And we don't even have a family member affected. We just know Amendment 3 is wrong and can't be gone soon enough.

  • BJMoose Syracuse, UT
    July 28, 2014 7:52 a.m.

    From MDurfee: "Furthermore, states, and society in general, have a huge interest in ensuring that social unions (such as traditional marriage) with the potential of producing children (who will provide the next generation of workers and tax-payers to support the economy) are protected and given special status and support. Any union which is intrinsically incapable of producing children provides no benefit for society, and is not entitled to that status."
    ___________________________
    Any union which is intrinsically incapable of producing children includes all seniors, anyone male or female who has had any kind of surgery or illness which nullifies their ability to reproduce and those whom for whatever reason are just plain sterile. So I guess to satisfy your concerns the state should institute fertility tests as a requirement for marriage and deny those who do not pass for whatever reason. (And I would hope that my answer sounds as ridiculous as your restrictions.)

  • Kevin J. Kirkham Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 7:55 a.m.

    "Yet too many people causally connect decriminalization of sodomy and recognition of same-sex marriage."

    This is because both deal with the majority denying equal protection to a despised minority despite the majority often engaging in those self-same practices the majority uses to justify such laws.
    States can't unilaterally make marriage laws. The Loving decision proves that. If the Court supports A3, it will allow challenges to Loving and could lead to "Full Faith & Credit" issues where some liberal states may deny reciprocal recognition of marriage certificates from states which don't recognize for former's SSM certificates. Some states don’t recognize Utah’s Concealed Carry licenses due to the former's standards/laws on CCWs. Conservatives have been screaming about the patchwork of these state laws that hinder one person's rights as they travel. Just wait until the same thing happens regarding marriage. To defend their position on SSM conservatives often state that marriage is NOT a right. If so, then liberal states will have a much easier time, legally, denying marriage license reciprocity.

  • Kevin J. Kirkham Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 8:00 a.m.

    John Howard
    Congress needs to resolve this debate..with a general law that (defines) marriage as "approving and allowing the couple to conceive offspring together".
    KJK
    The sterile, neutered, and women over 50 shouldn't be allowed to (re)marry then?

    MDurfee
    Any union which is intrinsically incapable of producing children provides no benefit for society, and is not entitled to that status.
    KJK
    See Above

    PJB Newsgram
    Loving dealt specifically with race not behavior.
    KJK
    How is "behavior" involved? Those banning mixed race marriages and SSMs justify their positions based on the physical attributes of the couples (color and plumbing), not "behaviors". 2 old impotent gay men aren't going to be engaging in "behaviors" when they marry. Lawrence outlawed the denial of rights based on private behaviors anyway. Straight couples engage in those eact same "behaviors" as well and aren't denied marriage. Your assertion is therefore moot.

    Mike Richards
    Utah's Constitution .. is the supreme law of the State.
    KJK
    The Founding Fathers, case law, and the D&C state otherwise.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    July 28, 2014 8:26 a.m.

    The argument about marriage, family, procreation, and worship of God predated creation. We know that in that "great council" held to determine how we would live when given mortal bodies the question was asked, "Whose laws will we obey?" One spokesman said that we would obey his laws, that he would make it impossible for anyone to fail. He demanded all glory and the honor. The other spokesman said that the eternal laws would be given to all, that he would pay for our mistakes if we repented, and that all honor and glory would be given to our Father in Heaven. Everyone on earth chose Christ's plan.

    Now there are those of us who honor our Father in Heaven, who marry someone of the opposite sex, who procreate if possible, and who teach our children to worship God. There are others who worship their bodies, use those bodies in ways that distort the purpose of procreation, who refuse to acknowlege God and who want to force us to change marriage to agree with their lifestyle.

    Talk about "deja vu".

  • MaaronSLC Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 8:28 a.m.

    Four of Drew's eight contributions are on same-sex marriage. Protesteth much?

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    July 28, 2014 8:50 a.m.

    MikeRichards,

    Your personal crusade against same-sex marriage is built on the logical equivalent of quicksand. Completely missing from your analysis is the fact that the Supreme Court of the United States has ruled, definitively, that there is no legal difference in the sex acts that straight people and gay people may choose to engage in. Old Testament admonitions, while certainly familiar to all the Justices, carried no weight when looking at the law, not even with the Jewish ones.

    Same-sex sex, which others here have noted you seem obsessed by, is therefore perfectly legal and may not be considered as a detrimental issue when considering marriage rights. Besides, marriage is about so much more than sex. As someone married for over three decades, I can testify to that.

    To Miss Piggie, who points to Leviticus as her justification to oppose equal rights, I ask you to honestly answer, have you EVER complied with 15:19-30? Not do you ALWAYS comply, but even once in your life as an adult woman?

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 28, 2014 9:08 a.m.

    @Mike Richards

    You claim several times in other threads (and correctly so) that Rights don't come from government but from our Creator. The Constitution does not grant rights, but protects them. Over time we have expanded that protection through amendments, but have never granted more rights.

    The central argument against a Bill of Rights was the fear that enumeration of a few would be construed as an exhaustive list, hence the inclusion of the Ninth Amendment.

    So where do you get the silly idea that Marriage isn't a right?

    And if it is a right, does it matter if 1.6% wants it, or 99%? Shouldn't ALL rights be protected? Fewer than 3% of the country is LDS, should we loose our rights of protection if the other 97 decide to vote against it?

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    July 28, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    In the New Testament, we read about Jesus rebuking the Pharisees for the attitudes. You see, the Pharisees were overly concerned about fixing others that they neglected the weightier issues of the gospel. Jesus condemned them because they were more concerned about the visibility of their righteousness, they forgot about cleaning the inner vessel. They neglected His greatest commandment.

    In the Book of Mormon, we learn about a tower the Zoramites built to declare their worthiness to the world. Scriptural scholars understand that this was a sinful practice, and that God does not delight in the sinful practice. What exactly do we learn about these people shouted praises to their God and took delight in shouting how much better they were than everyone else?

    Today, we have the Internet to proclaim our superiority to the world. I think it's time for a lot of us to practice a little bit more humility, get down on our knees, and ask our God how he would have us treat our neighbors.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 28, 2014 9:59 a.m.

    Darrel

    A great, great point. Strict "constructionism" certainly falls all over its arguments, and even engages in a bit of hypocrisy, when they argue from their positions. Certain rights, duties and responsibilities are understood by most of us and have evolved over time from the writing of the founding document. And it will continue as the world changes and we respond to different understandings. We might even one day limit our current interpretations of the 2nd Amendment. (Not holding my breath for that one though. Thank you NRA.)

    Also, many people conflate the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution when they attempt to find a loophole to justify same sex marriage prohibition. Our country and government are founded by the Constitution. The Declaration was really an act of rebellion against King George. The Declaration has a lot of good thoughts in it that guide our thinking, but it is really the Constitution that guides law.

  • GZE SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 28, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    Mike Richards,

    I am not part of your "1.6% who engages in same sex sex." I am, however, part of the 55% who support marriage equality throughout the nation.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    July 28, 2014 11:48 a.m.

    J Thompson
    SPRINGVILLE, UT
    The argument about marriage, family, procreation, and worship of God predated creation. We know that in that "great council" held to determine how we would live when given mortal bodies the question was asked, "Whose laws will we obey?"
    Everyone on earth chose Christ's plan.
    [So then - -Why are you fighting so hard against it?]

    BTW – Your buddy Mike keeps telling us that the majority rules over the courts.
    The majority supports the 1.6%
    As a fellow-member of another 1.6%, you might want to remind him how our 1.6% is protected against “majorities” by the Constitution,
    BTW –
    I got “married” out of Love and Companionship, not for sex or just to have children.
    If you all continue to make marriage only about sex,
    I must seriously reconsider who the real perverts are.

  • 2 tell the truth Clearwater, FL
    July 28, 2014 11:49 a.m.

    Re: "Neither Lawrence nor Windsor will be a support to those who would undermine state marriage laws, including those of Utah."

    Actually, yes they will. Because the State-level marriage laws contravene the Federal Constitution's promise of the equal protections of the law. They apply to EVERYONE, not just those who believe as this author does.

    States are perfectly free to concoct their own laws (on ANY topic) - but those laws cannot circumvent the US Constitution.

    Besides, "States' rights" was never anything other than the rallying call of the prejudiced.

  • John Howard Arlington, MA
    July 28, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    KJK asked me "The sterile, neutered, and women over 50 shouldn't be allowed to (re)marry then?"

    No they still have a right to marry someone eligible and try to procreate with their own gametes. They don't have to, it's not a requirement that a marriage procreates, but it is a right that is valuable and meaningful even if they don't procreate. But same-sex couples don't have the right to procreate and should be prohibited from trying, like siblings are.

  • family girl Spanish Fork, UT
    July 28, 2014 11:57 a.m.

    Thanks, Deseret News, for a reasoned and reasonable editorial. Many in this state are quiet in this debate because the rhetoric is so hateful toward those who would like to preserve the titles of Mother & Father, Husband & Wife by reserving the title of marriage for mothers and fathers.

    Surely there are ways to protect rights without making marriage even more meaningless than it already has been with media lies and easy divorce that persuade us that marriage is primarily for our personal gratification rather than the natural way of establishing a family unit.

    Society has no other reason for promoting marriage between a man and a woman than protecting family units that are most effective in producing responsible citizens. The studies that are so often quoted to say children are better off in same sex families are deeply flawed with volunteers being the subjects of most if not all such "studies".

    Let's stand by the natural family unit and take a look at ways we can provide for the rights of same sex unions without giving the stamp of approval that is really what this is all about.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:08 p.m.

    The voices become even more strident when the obvious holes in arguments are presented. The Federal Government does not "bestow" right on the citizens. All "rights" come from God. God decreed that marriage is between a man and a woman. States LICENSE that activity. There is no inherent right listed in the Constitution that grants the right of marriage to anyone. Sensible people can see that for themselves but the 1.6% who demand that we change marriage to include "couples" who believe in same-sex sex are trying to change the meaning of marriage to include their same-sex sex.

    No "rights" are disallowed. The license to marry requires all who would enter into marriage to abide by the rules set by society.

    Distorting facts and lying are not reasons to change marriage. Society requires that all who wish to marry fulfill all requirements before receiving a license. In Utah, the license requires that ONLY a nan and a woman can receive that license.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    @John Howard
    "No they still have a right to marry someone eligible and try to procreate with their own gametes. "

    The comment referred specifically to people who can't.

    "But same-sex couples don't have the right to procreate and should be prohibited from trying"

    And people say there's no animus in support for same-sex marriage bans...

  • 2 tell the truth Clearwater, FL
    July 28, 2014 12:16 p.m.

    @ 'family' girl,

    Re: "Many in this state are quiet in this debate because the rhetoric is so hateful toward those who would like to preserve the titles of Mother & Father, Husband & Wife by reserving the title of marriage for mothers and fathers."

    First off, no one IS trying to take away those titles. Mothers are simply female parents and fathers are male parents. Lots and lots of gay males and gay females are parents. Husbands are male spouses and wives are female spouses and neither has THAT changed. And of course, lots and lots of heterosexual fathers and mothers are NOT married, so the 'titles' have never been 'reserved' for heterosexuals in the first place. (Also, lots and lots of heterosexual wives and husbands are not parents.

    You sure sound confused.

  • 2 tell the truth Clearwater, FL
    July 28, 2014 12:17 p.m.

    more @ 'family girl'

    Re: "Surely there are ways to protect rights without making marriage even more meaningless"

    Gay people seeking equal marriage rights don't see marriage as "meaningless". Sorry that YOU seem to think of it that way.

    Re: "marriage is ... the natural way of establishing a family unit."

    Not really. TWO of Mitt Romney's sons are legally married but could NOT have a "family unit" (odd euphemism for a baby) in "the natural way" - they had to resort to IVF to make their babies. As do lots of people - married or NOT.

    Re: "Society has no other reason for promoting marriage between a man and a woman than protecting family units that are most effective in producing responsible citizens."

    Baloney! I personally know over 4 dozen LGBTQ folk (couples and singles) who raised 'responsible citizens". (One of them proudly serves her country in the military.)

  • 2 tell the truth Clearwater, FL
    July 28, 2014 12:17 p.m.

    To conclude to 'family girl'

    Re: "The studies that are so often quoted to say children are better off in same sex families are deeply flawed with volunteers being the subjects of most if not all such "studies"."

    Citation for your 'finding" please? Otherwise, it is dismissed as nothing more than your opinion.

    Re: "Let's stand by the natural family unit"

    You would need to apply your definition to str8 couples before you get to apply it to same-gender couples. And they reject your nonsense. Rightly so, imo.

    Re: "and take a look at ways we can provide for the rights of same sex unions"

    That very idea is anathema to the FFF (frabid, freligious, frightwing).

    Sorry, your entire 'argument' is predicated on there BEING children - and that simply is NOT a requirement of marriage ... for ANYONE.

  • Zabet Spanish Fork, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:24 p.m.

    "Marriage law inevitably treats prospective marriage partners as potential fathers and mothers, and for this reason marriage policy establishes the norm for parenting. By making same-sex parenting equivalent to man-woman parenting in our marriage policies, we would undermine our ability to elevate any parental arrangement as a social ideal — including biological parenthood itself.

    This gets to the core of why we need to stand for natural marriage between a mother and a father. Legalizing same sex marriage is just the camel's nose in the door. There will be far reaching ramifications that will involve much more than just same sex marriage.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:24 p.m.

    @JThompson

    You probably won't answer this, rather go on some side rant. But you just said " The Federal Government does not "bestow" right on the citizens." And then right after said "There is no inherent right listed in the Constitution that grants the right of marriage to anyone." So which is it? Is there a right to marry or not? Should government recognize marriage at all?

    A licensed activity, in this case marriage, must have reasonable restrictions. For example, we must be licensed to operate a vehicle; the restrictions are to be of age (implying some sense of personal responsibility) and in good health and vision. Anyone who meets those requirements (which are reasonable) can drive. The State cannot however say, "And you must attend Church at least 75% of all Sundays in a given year) because that is not a reasonable restriction to deny one the privilege of operating a vehicle.

    Marriage is a licensed institution for government recognition. Unless the State can show a compelling reason why two people cannot wed (e.g. dangers in close genetic relationship) any two people should be able to marry each other. The State must show why gender is a reasonable restriction.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:33 p.m.

    Another appeals court (this time involving Virginia) has ruled in favor of same-sex marriage.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:40 p.m.

    Darrell,

    Society has the obligation to limit marriage to those who will not harm themselves or to those entrusted to their care.

    Teaching a child that same-sex sex is acceptable harms society and harms that child. Society would be extinguished jf every person practiced that way of life. If it would harm society if all practiced it, it harms society if only a few practice it.

    A license requires that NO HARM be done to those who are licensed. Great harm comes to society from those who practice same-sex sex and who advocate same-sex sex as a "normal" way of life.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    July 28, 2014 12:41 p.m.

    @ J. Thompson
    You wrote:
    "All "rights" come from God. God decreed that marriage is between a man and a woman"

    When and where? Genesis? Which perhaps comes from Enuma Elis which is a Babylonian Myth of creation.

    Fortunately our society is a secular society and is based on the rule of law independent of religion.

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in Richmond just declared the Virgina ban of gay marriage unconstitutional.

    Congratulations Virginia.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    July 28, 2014 12:44 p.m.

    @J Thompson
    SPRINGVILLE, UT
    The voices become even more strident when the obvious holes in arguments are presented. The Federal Government does not "bestow" right on the citizens. All "rights" come from God. God decreed that marriage is between a man and a woman. States LICENSE that activity.

    ==========

    You do realize that Mormons is Utah were responsible for the invention of "marriage licenses", don't you.

    They were practicing unorthodox marriages, so they all marriages were then required to be licesned.

    As for that how long line about the Pre-Mortal existance, and laws and plans, and God's rights etc., etc. and such.
    As a "brother" in the Gospel,
    you DO realize that we are less than 1.6% that believe that,
    and yet -- here you and Mike are repeatedly insisting that the 98.4% do as YOU say.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 28, 2014 12:56 p.m.

    @JThompson,

    See? You side stepped my question. I asked whether Marriage was a right from God or not, you completely ignored it.

    The whole "if everyone did it" argument doesn't work. If everyone withdrew all of their money from the bank, our economy would crash...so should making bank withdrawals be illegal?

    Mother nature did a good job of ensuring against everyone turning gay. I am completely enamored with the female body, and nothing anyone ever said or did could convince to feel that way about the male body. The same thing can be said about 98.4% of our population if Mike Richards statistic is true. Therefore, it would be incredibly hard to argue that "Same sex marriage" will ever become normal, as less than 2% of all marriages performed will be for Same Sex couples.

    No one is saying you have to teach your kids it is acceptable. It is your God given right to teach your kids whatever you think is right. You can teach them that people from the moon are purple if you want.

  • family girl Spanish Fork, UT
    July 28, 2014 1:14 p.m.

    2 tell the truth
    I am not confused. Adoption is a great way for families to be established - it's the mother and father that are ideal for raising children. Obviously there are exceptions to most rules, but the overwhelming evidence is in favor of mothers and fathers providing the balance in parenting and Mitt's son's provide a mother as well as a father for their children. Great point.

    Many in our society consider marriage meaningless. No fault divorce has created a new climate of easy in and easy out that undermines the stability of families. Same sex marriage takes it further down that path by legally discrediting the need for both a mother and a father in the lives of their children. When women think they can take the place of fathers and men think they can take the place of mothers, the stability of families is further at risk.

    Mother and Father are titles that have been taken away in some states where gay marriage is legalized - birth certificates say "party A" & "party B" as do some marriage licences.

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    July 28, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    @J Thompson,

    " All "rights" come from God."

    and I thank Odin everyday for the rights he has bestowed on me and mine.

    "States LICENSE that activity. "

    Yup, and the state cannot discriminate based on religious dogma, ever.

    "but the 1.6% who demand that we change"

    Did Mike Richards give you permission to use his made up statistic? I'd hate to see DN involved in any copyright disputes.

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    July 28, 2014 1:35 p.m.

    @family girl,

    "Adoption is a great way for families to be established"

    And in Utah singles, gay/lesbian or straight CAN adopt--no marriage necessary.

  • cavetroll SANDY, UT
    July 28, 2014 2:31 p.m.

    "The Supreme Court on July 18 ruled in favor of Utah, for the second time in seven months, on the state’s legal efforts to preserve its definition of marriage. "

    No, the Supreme Court did not rule in favor of Utah. what it did do, however, was allow all the cases before the various courts right now to come to a conclusion. The Supreme Court cannot rule in favor of one side or another until the case is before it. Still tilting at windmills DNews.

  • Inis Magrath Fort Kent Mills, ME
    July 28, 2014 3:59 p.m.

    The article's author writes, "every substantive reference to a marriage right [in Windsor] refers immediately to a state’s decision to grant such a right.

    That's only half of the truth. The other half of Windsor is that every time the decision mentions state's rights to regulate marriage, the decision states that such regulation is subject to Federal Constitutional protections. The quote from Windsor, my my emphasis added in uppercase, is as follows:

    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."

    Thinking that Lawrence, Windsor and by the way also Romer, won't rule the day at the Supreme Court is nothing more than wishful thinking.

  • Mickie SLC, UT
    July 28, 2014 4:00 p.m.

    It's disheartening to see 1.6% suddenly stated as fact based on a single CDC self report survey. Those who have studied the scientific method know that for this number to be considered fact it must be repeated. After I learned about the 1.6% number I did more research. In self report surveys over the last few years results range from 1.6%-5%. So we should accept that the number of people willing to admit to being homosexual is somewhere in that range. Of course we cannot say that the real population isn't higher as there may be some survey participants unwilling to admit their orientation due to the stigma the LGBT population faces.

    But why does the number matter in this debate at all? It doesn't. If percentage of population was a factor for consideration for rights, why would the LDS church be given the legal rights of a church since its membership is lower than 1.6% of the population (based on their own records)? In fact that number comes in under 1%.

    It matters not how large a population is. Equal rights and protection under the law, due process, etc are guaranteed to all.

  • BJMoose Syracuse, UT
    July 28, 2014 5:57 p.m.

    My congratulations to the good people of Virginia who saw equality for all come to their state today with the 4th Circuit Court's ruling in favor of same sex marriage.
    Also to the good people of North Carolina also covered by the 4th with the announcement by their Attorney General that he would no longer defend North Carolina's ban on same sex marriage. Atty. Gen. Roy Cooper said he had made the decision because the appeals court ruling "predicts our law will be struck down. Simply put, it is time to stop making arguments we will lose and instead move forward."
    Oh that we could be so lucky.

  • Kevin J. Kirkham Salt Lake City, UT
    July 28, 2014 8:51 p.m.

    John Howard
    Congress needs to resolve this debate..with a general law that (defines) marriage as "approving and allowing the couple to conceive offspring together".
    KJK
    The sterile, neutered, and women over 50 shouldn't be allowed to (re)marry then?
    JH
    No they still have a right to marry someone eligible and try to procreate with their own gametes.
    KJK
    Oh, so the politically correct group unable to procreate (the sterile, neutered, and women over 50) are free to marry, but the disfavored group (gays and lesbians...many of whom ARE ABLE to procreate via IVF like many straights do) are unable to marry...Hmmmm. Only subjective religious belief and one’s personal disgust of homosexuality are the reasons to deny SSM. The same reasons used to ban polygamy.

    JH
    They don't have to, it's not a requirement that a marriage procreates...
    KJK
    So why is procreation constantly given as a reason to deny SSM? Opponents say that kids are better off with straight parents. Even if true, we still allow child molesters to marry and have kids. Are they better parents than gays with no criminal inklings?

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    July 28, 2014 11:38 p.m.

    Regarding accusations of "hate rhetoric", my observation is that people speak loudly and clearly for rational basis. Lack of rational basis is uncomfortable if you lack it, but that isn't "hate rhetoric".

    To the Editor: If Utah County is calling you out on your argument (it is), you can hang up your hat on this one.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    July 29, 2014 8:17 a.m.

    J Thompson says:

    "Society has the obligation to limit marriage to those who will not harm themselves or to those entrusted to their care.

    Teaching a child that same-sex sex is acceptable harms society and harms that child."

    --- Utter and complete nonsense.

    You just made the claim that LGBT parents will "harm the children entrusted to their care". That is simply not true, nor are you preventing those who will actually do harm, abusers, molesters, etc. from marrying; the only reason, JT, can be bigotry.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    July 29, 2014 8:45 a.m.

    J Thompson says:

    "Society has the obligation to limit marriage to those who will not harm themselves or to those entrusted to their care.

    Teaching a child that same-sex sex is acceptable harms society and harms that child."

    ========

    I have a bit of advise -

    Teaching a child that gay people are icky, yucky, sub-humans harms society and harms that child.

    BTW -- since when does marriage of anykind require children?

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    July 29, 2014 3:34 p.m.

    Equality? In marriage? Only if you allow equal rights to legal cohabitation with every single person in America regardless of anything. If you're good with that, then you aren't an "equality hypocrit" which the Gay agenda is. They only want what they want when they want it and don't care about the consequences or the universality. (Keep in mind, if you agree with full equality you must allow three women, or four men, or two men and one woman, or a fraternity, and pedophiles to all have the same right you do.) We prohibit much of this because it is destructive to children and the State doesn't want to encourage it. There are good reasons for not granting universal equality in all things.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 29, 2014 4:19 p.m.

    @RockOn

    (Keep in mind, if you agree with full equality you must allow three women, or four men, or two men and one woman, or a fraternity, and pedophiles to all have the same right you do.)

    =====================

    I have no problem with 3 women, four men, two men and one woman or a fraternity. As long as they are consenting adults and the administrative complexities can be resolved (e.g. inheritance, what happens if one of the parties decides to leave...etc).

    Pedophilia is easy to ban because a child cannot legally consent to marriage. Plain and simple, same reason a person cannot marry their dog as people like to use for an example.

    If my neighbor is able to sweet talk 3 women into marrying him, who am I to say no?

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 9:28 a.m.

    @ Rock On re: "Only if you allow equal rights to legal cohabitation with every single person in America regardless of anything.."
    ----
    Sexual orientation like race and gender is considered an immutable characteristic for most people. The desire to marry more than one, or every single person (like religious views - for and against ones marriage) are considered a choice. Therefore, the government is not obligated to formally recognize every co-habitive relationship a person seeks to enter. Consider that the existing right to marry someone for which there is no attraction or desire of intimacy is quite simply no right at all.

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 12:39 p.m.

    "State laws defining and regulating marriage, of course, must respect the constitutional rights of persons, see Loving v. Virginia (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.” - Windsor v. US

    Who wants to be remembered as the next Leon Brazile? The judge in the first Loving trial who said:

    "Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix."

    Yikes, what a legacy!