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Utah appeals to U.S. Supreme Court in gay marriage case

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  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    There's also that recent 4th circuit appeals court ruling striking down Virginia's same-sex marriage ban (2-1 decision).

  • slcdenizen Murray, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 11:55 a.m.

    "Gulp"

    -Supreme Court

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:00 p.m.

    Because so many Circuit courts are ruling consistently, the SCOTUS may decide to simply let those rulings stand.

    Which is a victory for justice and equality in Utah and America!

  • Beehive1 Spanish Fork, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:06 p.m.

    The supreme court has delayed this decision long enough. It's time for them to settle this once and for all. The state no longer has the right to define marriage.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:27 p.m.

    I understand the need for full judicial review, but how many lower court opinions does the Supreme Court need to proceed? SCOTUS started this ball rolling with the Windsor decision, how about a final decision one way or another?

    How about letting the three Appeals courts that are having oral arguments in the next month complete their work, and then get on with it? Do we really need to have every state and federal judge in America weigh in on this?

  • Inis Magrath Fort Kent Mills, ME
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:35 p.m.

    @Beehive1: States have never had the right to define marriage in such a way that it violates Federal Constitutional civil rights provisions. See: Loving v. Virginia.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:46 p.m.

    Polygamy is wrong, and all other practices that this article refers to; if we allow one then we open a floodgate and have to allow all. Then chaos reigns. People may disagree, have a right to disagree. Yet a law suit culture is not good for the future. We can all argue about art and philosophy and sunsets and flowers and what to eat for dinner and where to go hiking or what book to read, or which of the 472 hobbies in the world are best to take up, or we can rearrange the furniture. Forgive others and don't live by lawsuit. The Bible is more important than the Constitution, and with the topic of this article, you have to choose which one you will follow.

  • ConservativeSmasher Anaheim, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    @I M LDS 2

    "Because so many Circuit courts are ruling consistently, the SCOTUS may decide to simply let those rulings stand."

    No. You're wrong. Justice Ginsburg has already stated that the Supreme Court will rule on this issue.

  • waikiki_dave Honolulu, HI
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:54 p.m.

    Let's see, now what was that tune Dandy Don Meredith use to sing on Monday night football?

    Oh yes, it goes something like this:

    "Turn out the lights, the party's over, they say that all good things must end"

    "Call it tonight, the party's over, and tomorrow starts the same ole thing again"

    . . . . Willie Nelson, oh and btw, I believe Willie supports marriage equality too.

  • ConservativeSmasher Anaheim, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:58 p.m.

    @I M LDS 2

    No. Justice Ginsburg has already stated publicly that the Supreme Court will rule on this issue.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:07 p.m.

    Federal judges are creating a Constitutional right that didn't exist in 1972 - after Loving. See Baker v Nelson.

    Yes, the Supreme Court needs to decide this matter, and I hope they follow the actual meaning and intent of the Constitution.

  • Objectified Richfield, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:10 p.m.

    There still remains very strong feelings about this issue in both directions. Hopefully, both sides can maintain civility and respect for those who don't necessarily share their same opinion. It's sometimes extremely difficult to walk in someone else's shoes and thus remain non-judgmental.

    No matter what the Supreme Court ultimately decides on this, there will always remain strong feelings in the other direction for various reasons. It will be a test of our society's civility and strength in seeing how well that decision is accepted and upheld by our country in general, since that Supreme Court decision is basically final and can't be appealed further... no matter what the ruling ends up being.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    Even if SCOTUS rules that the states can ban gay marriage and define marriage as they see fit the states will cave on this issue and eventually allow gay marriages because of the economic threats and boycotts that will follow.

  • Objectified Richfield, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:35 p.m.

    @ waikiki_dave:

    Wow. If Willie Nelson supports SSM, then by all means it must be the way to go. Afterall, letting old, has-been and washed-up entertainers decide such critical issues in our society seems like the only sensible thing to do.

    If that is your strongest argument, you really need to go back to the drawing board. It's one of the weakest I ever remember reading. It actually makes the other side's perspective somehow seem stronger.

  • Michael Hunt Murray, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:54 p.m.

    @Dutchman

    Isn't that how the free market works? I factor in your ethics before buying your goods, thus promoting more social unity and cohesion. If I choose to discriminate or produce negative externalities without paying for them, is it not acceptable for my customers to encourage better behavior by patroning another merchant?

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:55 p.m.

    @christoph wrote: "Polygamy is wrong, and all other practices that this article refers to; if we allow one then we open a floodgate and have to allow all. Then chaos reigns."

    This is what we call the slippery slope fallacy. Just because it's inevitable in your mind does not mean it is inevitable in reality.

    "Yet a law suit culture is not good for the future."

    I hope you sent a strongly-worded letter on this topic to Speaker Boehner.

    "The Bible is more important than the Constitution, and with the topic of this article, you have to choose which one you will follow."

    I must have missed where it says "thou shalt prevent same-sex couples from marrying under civil law." It's probably right next to the verses about selling cakes.

  • SharpHooks Lake Sammamish, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:59 p.m.

    All the natives screamed that the investigation of Swallow was a waste of money.
    That was an INVESTMENT. THIS is a waste of our money.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:01 p.m.

    Objectified - "No matter what the Supreme Court ultimately decides on this, there will always remain strong feelings in the other direction for various reasons. It will be a test of our society's civility and strength in seeing how well that decision is accepted ... ."

    It will never be accepted by some. The test of civility will be whether we, as individuals who disagree with the Court, condemn the inevitable incivility and violence that follows. We have civil rights and abortion decisions that still inflame extremists - but too many citizens accept the occasional abortion-clinic shooting/bombing or racially motivated discrimination.

  • Back Talk Federal Way, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:20 p.m.

    It is inevitable. I think even the State of Utah wants to prove that they have done all that they can and then live with the result.

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:46 p.m.

    Excellent. It had to be appealled. Two points: 1) The citizens of a State MUST have the right to define marriage correctly -- ONLY between ONE man and ONE woman. 2) Equality in marriage already exists. Any man of age can marry any woman of age. If you delude yourself into thinking you are "for equality" in all things, then are you for stripping out "age" as a determining factor? Equal would then be universally equal.

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:54 p.m.

    "It comes down to this: Thousands of mixed-race couples are unconstitutionally being denied the right to marry, or millions of voters are being disenfranchised of their vote to define marriage," the confederate state of Virginia wrote in its concurrence with Utah.

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:02 p.m.

    @RockOn wrote:

    "Any man of age can marry any woman of age. If you delude yourself into thinking you are "for equality" in all things, then are you for stripping out "age" as a determining factor? Equal would then be universally equal."

    There's a rational basis for limiting marriage to people above the age of majority (or up to two years younger in specific cases): because children cannot consent to entering into contracts, contracts that could affect them for the rest of their lives.

    What is the rational basis for limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples? It doesn't exist. The only reason for banning same-sex marriage is anti-LGBT animus.

  • Kaladin Northern, CO
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:07 p.m.

    The Supreme Court will take it up. They will decide that laws banning SSM are unconstitutional. I am a religious man who believes homosexuality is a sin. That being said, I have homosexual friends and have nothing against them as people. Don't believe me? That's fine, but it is true. I have friends in all walks of life that do things that I consider to be sins (I struggle with my own sins). In the end what matters most is that people like me who believe it is a sin still need to be kind and respectful to those who have a different set of beliefs. I would ask the same in return. As long as my faith is not forced to cater to SSM (which I don't see happening in my lifetime) life will move on. I do see polygamy being the next issue to come to the front in this arena of marriage, but that is another story for another day.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:07 p.m.

    From the article -- "The state's petition says the difference in the competing views of marriage is not that one side promotes equality, justice and tolerance, while the other endorses inequality, injustice and intolerance."

    Endorsing inequality, injustice and intolerance is exactly what the state is trying to do.

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

    @SoCalChris 1:07 p.m. Aug. 5, 2014

    Yes, the Supreme Court needs to decide this matter, and I hope they follow the actual meaning and intent of the Constitution.

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

    To follow the actual meaning and intent of the Constitution, the Court ruling would allow secular same-sex marriage but rule that churches have the right to determine who is eligible for religious marriage according to the doctrine of each. The meaning and intent of the constution would thereby be satisfied and followed in every regard.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:21 p.m.

    @Rock On
    "If you delude yourself into thinking you are "for equality" in all things, then are you for stripping out "age" as a determining factor? "

    Well then it's a good thing that's not the argument. The argument for interracial marriage involved removing race from the requirement list, same-sex marriage just looks to remove gender from the requirement list.

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:22 p.m.

    Strongly charged devicive issues need calm minds to find middle grounds. The battle lines are now drawn and neither side will retreat.

    My suggestion: Allow both sides some dignity. For those with moral beliefs for Natural Marriage, they need to allow those who want NO rules on marriage all the contractual rights Natural Marriage has without the label. Leave Marriage to the Natural law definition.

    Both sides win.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:43 p.m.

    In my opinion, the only thing that is inevitable is that whatever ruling the Supreme Court comes up with will end in societal division. Roe v Wade never settled the abortion question and hundreds of millions of Americans oppose abortion and that trend is growing. You cannot adjudicate immorality!. A court cannot decide what is moral or immoral, those are questions of the conscience. If past commentaries posted by the majority of the gay community are any indication, it is not likely that they will act with civility to those who are on the other side of the debate if SCOTUS rules against SSM. Predictably, if the court rules in favor of SSM many in the gay community will believe that the rest of us should just suddenly abandon our moral conscience and accept it with open arms. Not going to happen.

  • Hank Jr Draper, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:25 p.m.

    Homosexual marriage will never happen after the SCOTUS makes their final decision.

  • Laura Bilington Maple Valley, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:37 p.m.

    Christoph, if you "live by the Bible", you'll have the right to enslave people in neighboring countries. I think that both the Canadians and the Mexicans might disagree with you, even if you do point out chapter and verse.

  • SlightlyOffCenter Salt Lake, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:42 p.m.

    When all is said and done, no matter how it turns out, I want my portion of the millions of dollars the state has wasted on this refunded to me. All the problems we have in this state, and we throw millions of dollars at this?

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:47 p.m.

    History shows us that marriage is not defined by those who are excluded. Otherwise, why would we allow opposite sex felon child molesters and spousal abusers to civil marry? Interracial couples wanted to participate in the institution that traditionally did not allow them to marry. Tradition is simply not a valid reason to continue a practice of discrimination. There are no Interracial marriage licenses. There are no felony marriage licenses. There are no non-procreative marriage licenses. Allowing same-sex couples to participate and/or strengthen the existing institution, means there is only ONE marriage license for all. Nothing has been re-defined. Look no further than "traditional voting" which was NOT "re-defined" by allowing women the right to vote anymore than freeing slaves changed the definition of freedom. A right to marry someone for which there is no attraction or desire of intimacy is simply no right at all. The "redefinition argument" is a logical fallacy and complete nonsense.

  • Laura Bilington Maple Valley, WA
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:49 p.m.

    RockOn, your suggestion of "all the rights, just don't use the word 'marriage'" bears a remarkable resemblance to the pre-1954 arrangement of "separate-but-equal" facilities in the South. And we all know how well that worked.

    Meck, if you want to guess how civil the anti-SSM crowd will be when SCOTUS lets the lower court rulings stand, just read the posts being made today. Not too many of them score high on the civility index. Might I gently remind you that the Samaritans were a despised lot, and may well have been considered "immoral", but Jesus said some pretty nice things about the one who helped that injured guy.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Aug. 5, 2014 4:53 p.m.

    The link in the side-bar to the full text of the Utah appeal filing is broken. If it's not fixed by the time this gets posted, you can also find it on the Scribd website. Just search for 235952087.

    It's pretty hilarious, if you want my opinion. It's as if Gene Schaerr hasn't read any of the failed briefs that have been losing all year long in courts all over the country. He tries to sell Baker again. To the Supreme Court! He raises Tradition, another perennial non-starter. And then he, apparently with a straight face, goes on to assert that Utah's law meets EVERY standard of judicial review.

    You opponents of same-sex marriage better hope the Supreme Court doesn't take his brief. You'll have a better chance with almost any other state's. This one is pretty weak sauce.

    You're paying him for this?

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Aug. 5, 2014 5:16 p.m.

    @HankJr: Hello? Are you aware there's a whole country that surrounds Utah, and 20 of those other states (including DC) where marriage equality is the law of the land RIGHT NOW, where same-sex couples are marrying TODAY? In fact, those states represent some 44% of the population of the US.

    No matter what the Supreme Court rules, those 20 states (including DC) will continue to have legal same-sex marriage. I also suspect, strongly, that even if they rule that Utah can keep part of Amendment 3, at a very minimum the non-recognition part will be struck down. Because... if the Federal Government has to recognize a same-sex marriage conducted in a jurisdiction that permits it, where in heck is Utah going to find the footing to set itself above the Federal Government? (Hint: Not going to happen. "States Rights" are additive, not subtractive.)

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 5:22 p.m.

    Most of the objections are either:

    A-- My religion has no place for it, so neither does the Constitution.

    B-- Those people are not worthy of sitting in my part of the bus.

    Small-mindedness, prejudice, snobbery, inflexibility --- not at all Christian

  • Quickslow87 Dallas, TX
    Aug. 5, 2014 6:19 p.m.

    Why is it okay for two women in love to get married but not three? Why is their love not respected like that of the two women? If same gender marriage is approved, there will be... unintended results.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 7:50 p.m.

    "...The state's petition says the difference in the two predominant and competing views of marriage is not that one side promotes equality, justice and tolerance, while the other endorses inequality, injustice and intolerance...".

    The exact defense states rights advocates used in Loving v Virginia.

    "...In his dissent, Judge Paul Kelly wrote that the Constitution is silent on the regulation of marriage and that power is reserved to the states, albeit consistent with federal constitutional guarantees...".

    Another example echoing states rights advocates thinking in Loving v Virginia.

    How did these lines of thinking work for states rights advocates in Loving v Virginia?

    The slippery slope arguments used by states rights advocates today are the same slippery slope arguments used by states rights advocates in Loving v Virginia.

    How did these lines of thinking work for states rights advocates in Loving v Virginia?

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    Aug. 5, 2014 7:56 p.m.

    @slightyoffcenter It is the people trying to redefine marriage that are bringing it up and the Governer and AG are doing what they have a duty to do. Besides that money is a drop in the bucket as most school districts and highway departments have budgets well over what the State is spending in something it was put up on. Should you refuse to pay personal legal fees because that money could be better spent when you are wronged. The State of Utah is doing it's constitutional duty to defend the voters. Ask the plantiffs to pay the fee's. Do we need to roll over and play dead when we are litigated against for money sake.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 5, 2014 8:27 p.m.

    Quickslow87,

    To answer your polygamy question, it's a question of equality. Marriage as currently granted and adjudicated (and there's a lot of adjudication involved with marriage) is an equal partnership of two people who are granted next-of-kin status by the State. This next-of-kin status supercedes their natural blood families. And, by legal design, in modern marriage, it's an equal partnership.

    Imagine adjudicating survivorship, guardianship, divorce, or child support in an polygamous marriage. Today, in a two-person marriage, if one of them is unconscious, taken ill with no living will or health-care proxy, the other can speak for them and make decisions. What happens if there are three other spouses? Who don't agree?

    What happens in a polygynous family, when one wife sues for divorce and child support? That breaks their economic model and could impoverish the remaining family and children.

    Marriage is a legal arrangement, first and foremost. Unless an arrangement can be as balanced as one with only two partners, there is no way any state is going to approve such a legal status. It's an administrative nightmare unless they say "no."

  • tarbaby5 Herriman, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 10:58 p.m.

    @Testimony, I thought that SSM was a civil rights issue, that two SS people who love each other should have the same right as hetero marriages? Now you're saying that it's only an inheritance/survivorship issue?

    Are you willing to concede that the civil rights argument doesn't hold water? That the 'civil right' for three people who love each other is no different than the civil right for two people who love each other?

    And as to your argument about inheritance/survivorship, couldn't that be easily solved with a prenuptial agreement?

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:42 a.m.

    @Understands Math:
    "... children cannot consent to entering into contracts..."

    Laws can be changed... At least that's what SSM proponents are telling us.

    "What is the rational basis for limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples?"

    Marriage is designed to produce and raise children. I'd like to see two men or two women produce a child. But, if they want to all marry each other, they might be on to something.

    @Kaladin:
    "The Supreme... will decide that laws banning SSM are unconstitutional."

    Then the court will have to do some serious contorting of the Constitution.

    @Furry1993:
    "Endorsing inequality, injustice and intolerance is exactly what the state is trying to do."

    Agreed... where states are banning polygamy, and any other combination of marriage.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:45 a.m.

    Gay marriage is on the rise, while America is on the decline.

    Is there any time in world history, where a prosperous country was gay?

  • My2Cents Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 4:23 a.m.

    Why aren't these states stopping the supermen courts and federal courts state courts and DOJ from passing illegal decisions on what is written into the constitution? What is written into the constitution is not debatable or the authority of the judicial system to question, the Constitution limits their rules of procedure.

    The state of Utah should be taking their argument to the Congressmen and the Legislator of law and order to renounce the judicial departments breaching the separtion of government powers by trying to change the Constitution to suit their pleasures. The courts can only make opinions of the intent of laws, not the law itself.

    By letting the Judaical system make opinion of the law itself is a breach of their powers and authority. They do not have this power or authority and its time the legislative branch of governmetn become responsible and enforce the Constitution and separation of powers among the branches. The legislators are the power and voice of representation of the people and have the collective power to change the powers of the branches of government and even the Constitution and its written laws.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 6, 2014 5:26 a.m.

    tarbaby,

    Marriage Equality ("SSM") is a civil rights issue.

    Polygamy is not.

    Other than LDS members, I don't seem to hear anyone else talking about legal polygamy as either a threat or a desired outcome.

    Allowing LGBT folk to marry their desired partner is not only a clear case of civil justice, it's a completely logical outcome of legalizing their physical relationships, which the Supreme Court did in Lawrence v. Texas. It's completely logical because it still fits the basic model of marriage, which is an equal partnership of two consenting, unrelated adults who wish to become each others' next of kin for all emotional, spiritual, administrative and financial reasons.

    The patriarchal model of polygynous polygamy doesn't work in modern society because one man is not the equal of two or more women. Not emotionally, not administratively, not spiritually, and not financially. What if the man dies or is taken seriously ill? How would divorce affect the remaining family? Which wife gets to draw retirement based on her husband's Social Security, certainly not all of them? No, there's simply no way to make polygamy work legally or equitably.

  • ConservativeSmasher Anaheim, CA
    Aug. 6, 2014 6:48 a.m.

    @Understands Math

    "Understands Math wrote: This is what we call the slippery slope fallacy. Just because it's inevitable in your mind does not mean it is inevitable in reality."

    No. That's not a slippery-slope theory - it's clear logic.

    If marriage is a fundamental constitutional right for homosexuals, it must be a fundamental constitutional right for heterosexuals.

  • Br. Jones East Coast, MD
    Aug. 6, 2014 6:57 a.m.

    @tarbaby5: I think the inheritance and power-of-attorney rights that Testimony mentions are among the civil rights being sought by SSM proponents, not the sole definition of SSM marriage privileges.

  • Jeff Harris Edmonds, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 7:18 a.m.

    In their appeal to the 10th District Circuit Court, Gene Schaerr and the other attorneys working on behalf of the State of Utah argued that marriage is for the benefit of having children.

    Unfortunately for them, their argument was totally inconsistent with Utah's marriage law:

    Title 30
    Husband and Wife
    Chapter 1
    Marriage (EXCERPT)

    (2) First cousins may marry under the following circumstances:
    (a) both parties are 65 years of age or older; or
    (b) if both parties are 55 years of age or older, upon a finding by the district court, located in the district in which either party resides, that either party is unable to reproduce.

    No doubt these highly qualified attorneys will want to bone up on the inconvenient points of Utah's marriage law before they present their case to the US Supreme Court, where justices may tell them they have explaining to do.

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    Aug. 6, 2014 9:02 a.m.

    @My2Cents says: "The courts can only make opinions of the intent of laws, not the law itself."

    You must not live in the US. Here in American the courts have had the core authority to review the constitutionality of a law ever since 1803 with Marbury v Madison. Judicial review of the law is a very basic part of our system of government, and it's why mixed-race couples are free to marry in the confederate states today.

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    @ConservativeSmasher wrote:

    "No. That's not a slippery-slope theory - it's clear logic.

    If marriage is a fundamental constitutional right for homosexuals, it must be a fundamental constitutional right for heterosexuals."

    Please list the localities that outlaw opposite-sex marriage, please.

  • skeptic Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    @christoph, To take your argument to the other extreme, how about doing away with all marriages of all sexes and make them all chapter S corporations. After all this is corporate America and corporations are people. God must love corporations because he is turning the whole big world into one world wide united corporation.

  • San Diego Orem, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 10:56 a.m.

    Utah law states that marriage is between a man and woman. What is to stop a transgender woman from marrying a man or a transgender man from marrying a woman? Would this be legal under the current law?

  • MaxPower Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:36 p.m.

    @christoph

    "the bible is more important than the Constitution."

    In this Country the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land. The First Amendment prohibits the Bible from taking precedents.

    Government should take every precaution to allow citizens to live according to their conscious...so long as that does not violate the rights of others.

    You claim that polygamy is wrong, but the Bible clearly supports it. For examples, I refer you to Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon. Did Jacob sin in polygamy?

  • MaxPower Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:40 p.m.

    @wrz

    Marriage is designed to produce and raise children.

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

    False. Even the Bible does not support that. God gave Adam Eve as a help-meet, not to be a child producer. He gave the commandment to reproduce AFTER they were both created. But in his reasoning to create her, he did not say to have offspring.

    Marriage is about commitment, to each other first and foremost. It is true that children arise from many of these couplings, but unmarried couples can have kids, and there are married couples that do not have kids.

    To be consistent in your reasoning we would have to give all potential marriage partners fertility tests, and if within a certain amount of time they have no children dissolve their marriage.

    Of course, that would be ridiculous. Therefore marriage is about Love; not kids.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    "A U.S. District Judge Shelby struck down Amendment 3 last December, ruling that it violates the due process and equal protection guarantees in the 14th Amendment."

    The good judge is missing some salient points.

    'Due process' simply means an assurance that all levels of American government must operate within the law and provide fair procedures. It says nothing about the fairness or equality of laws.

    'Equal protection of the laws' simply means laws will be applied equally to all citizens of the States. As for laws defining marriage as between one man and one woman, it is applied equally to all citizens of the state. That is, if someone wishes to marry they need but to select someone of the opposite sex.

    If a state takes legal action to extend marriage to same-sex folks in order to provide equal protection, it must also extend marriage to other combinations such as polygamy; two/three/four or more men and one woman; Two/three/four or more women and one man; father/daughter, mother/son, close relatives such as first cousins, teens, and any and all other possible marriage combinations.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:16 p.m.

    MaxPower
    "He (God) gave the commandment to reproduce AFTER they were both created. But in His reasoning to create her, He did not say to have offspring."

    Does it matter when God commanded them to reproduce? The point is, He commanded them to do so. Genesis 1:28: '...and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth...'

    I fail to see how two guys or two gals married to each other can multiply. Now, if they wanna marry each other as a group of four they might me able to pull off the multiply thing.

    "To be consistent in your reasoning we would have to give all potential marriage partners fertility tests..."

    Not so. All married heterosexuals likely try to produce children. Sometimes they fail for some reason. But, two males or two females can try all day long and not succeed... if I understand the human reproductive system correctly.

    "Therefore marriage is about Love; not kids."

    You don't need marriage to love. I would suspect you love your mother. But that doesn't mean you wanna marry her... or maybe it does. But I hope not.

  • ConservativeSmasher Anaheim, CA
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    @ Understands Math

    "Please list the localities that outlaw opposite-sex marriage, please."

    Well, since polygamous marriage IS opposite-sex marriage, I'd venture to say it is banned in all 50 states and US territories.

  • MtnDewer Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:38 p.m.

    wrz,

    States had decided that their definition of marriage did not include blacks and whites marrying. This was taken before the SCOTUS and they ruled that this state law was unconstitutional per our 14th amendment. The suit proved that black/white marriages did not harm others and that those wanting interracial marriages were not being treated equally. The ruling did not open the door for gays to marry. It did not open the door for polygamists. It did not open the door for you to marry your daughter.

    Now, gays have petitioned the courts, since states have passed laws that limit marriage to man-woman. So far, all federal courts have concurred that these laws are unconstitutional. It will go before the SCOTUS. If they decide that these laws go against the 14th amendment too, it will not open the door for the number allowed to marry to change. This will be a different lawsuit that they must prove how this does not harm others and treats them differently than other citizens are being treated. That last one might be hard to show since even those wanting polygamy can marry at least one other person.

    Your argument is false.

  • TheTrueVoice West Richland, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:21 p.m.

    It's very unfortunate that those souls controlled by dogma can not understand this issue, and continue to gnash teeth and wring hands over something that has ZERO to do with their own personal lives.

    Why is that, exactly?

    I still find it both amazing and disturbing that so many appear to be so very, VERY intensely interested in what goes on behind other folks bedroom doors. Of what business is it of yours?

    Do you contend that there is demonstrable harm caused by allowing same sex couples to marry? That has lost in court every time. Do you contend that there is compelling state interest in denying marriage that overwhelms the constitutional mandate to equal protection of the law?

    How about the many churches that either DO or, in non-equality states wish to perform same sex weddings? Where is their religious freedom?

    What are you afraid of? What consequences can you enumerate that will be so dire as to overwhelm the mandate for equal treatment and the benefits of marriage to gay families, their children and society?

  • Understands Math Lacey, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:27 p.m.

    @ConservativeSmasher:

    "Well, since polygamous marriage IS opposite-sex marriage, I'd venture to say it is banned in all 50 states and US territories."

    You seem confused. The case in question does not address laws against bigamy or polygamy in any way.

    And if the legalization of same-sex marriage would inevitably lead to the legalization of polygamy... why hasn't it happened yet?

    Hence my reference to the "slippery slope fallacy."

    @wrz: "Laws can be changed... At least that's what SSM proponents are telling us."

    You ignore of course again the rational reason for children being unable to consent to marriage.

    "Marriage is designed to produce and raise children. I'd like to see two men or two women produce a child. But, if they want to all marry each other, they might be on to something."

    The law has no such child-raising requirement, or even expectation. But plenty of same-sex couples are raising children, be they biological or adopted. And they expect the same benefits that opposite-couples receive. And I know of no reason why they shouldn't.

    And this being my fourth and final comment on this article, I bid you all good day.

  • MtnDewer Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:40 p.m.

    wrz: "Does it matter when God commanded them to reproduce? The point is, He commanded them to do so. Genesis 1:28: '...and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth...'

    I fail to see how two guys or two gals married to each other can multiply."

    -----------

    Now, please connect this with our civil construct of marriage...what does who, when, where, and why have to do with the act of two people marrying? You know that people can marry who do not have any chance of procreating...they can try all day and not succeed. Yet, there is no prohibition to them marrying. In fact, it is purely for the companionship, love and legal mutual benefits they receive that they do marry. Yes, older, infertile couples are allowed to partake of the same marriage rights and privileges that younger, fertile couples can.

    I know that you like how the pieces fit, but they are, by law, similarly situated with gay couples. Check that phrase out in your legal books. It really does have something to do with treating citizens equally and the 14th amendment.

    Not to mention first cousins in Utah...can you explain that law?

  • my_two_cents_worth university place, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 3:23 p.m.

    @wrz,

    "Marriage is designed to produce and raise children."

    Can you show us where that is codified in law?

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    Aug. 6, 2014 3:57 p.m.

    TheTrueVoice
    West Richland, WA
    "It's very unfortunate that those souls controlled by dogma can not understand this issue, and continue to gnash teeth and wring hands over something that has ZERO to do with their own personal lives.
    Why is that, exactly?
    Of what business is it of yours?
    What are you afraid of? What consequences can you enumerate that will be so dire as to overwhelm the mandate for equal treatment and the benefits of marriage to gay families, their children and society?"

    --- The Utah Fuss is simple to explain:

    1-- Most Gay people in Utah are from lds families
    2-- lds religion and life are centered around marriage
    3-- When non Mormons down the block are marrying, how does an lds parent tell only one of his kids they must live in celibacy, alone?
    4-- Thus, equality threatens the church, not individuals

    I believe that God has spoken on this subject, as shown by the whirlwind of acceptance all over the country, even among DN readers. God keeps loving His children and giving them more freedom.

    He has sent new blessings to those who were formerly excluded by man's ignorance.

    He did not write church dogma: men did.

  • Yale Jimmy Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 4:12 p.m.

    @Rock On...One could not possibly be any more incorrect then your post. #1 citizens of states do not have rights defining marriage "correctly". (That's the entire point of the lawsuit) #2- Any man of age most certainly may NOT marry any women of age. #3- Age of consent has absolutely nothing to do with this matter at hand along with equality! #4- Is your "correct" marriage that weak and unstable that another's would negatively effect your own? Do your friends marriage problems (which all married "correctly" I assume) effect your own in a negative manner?

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 6:46 a.m.

    christoph says:

    "The Bible is more important than the Constitution, and with the topic of this article, you have to choose which one you will follow."

    --- Then I will choose to follow the Constitution since the Bible is nothing more than an ancient work of fiction.

    SoCalChris says:
    "... the Supreme Court needs to decide this matter, and I hope they follow the actual meaning and intent of the Constitution."

    ---You mean the original intent of equality, liberty and justice for ALL Americans? Or only those you approve of?

    @Objectified;

    I'm sure the "civility" of the anti-marriage crowd, calling LGBT "sinners, abominations, etc." will continue right along as it is now; with them continuing to work in foreign nations to criminalize LGBT peoples.

    @RockOn;

    The citizens of the state NEVER had the right to violate the civil rights of their fellow citizens.

    @Quickslow87;

    I love the nebulous "unintended results" comments. Next, I want to see your post stating "The sky is falling, the sky is falling...".

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 6:47 a.m.

    @higv;

    If Utah had not created an amendment violating the civil rights of LGBT citizens, we'd never have had to take it to court in the first place; putting the responsibility for the cost right back where it belongs - on your (Utahns) shoulders.

    ConservativeSmasher says:

    "If marriage is a fundamental constitutional right for homosexuals, it must be a fundamental constitutional right for heterosexuals.'"

    --- Yes it is, and nobody is telling heterosexuals they can't marry.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 9:29 a.m.

    5-4 ruling in favor of states deciding marriage laws for their citizens.

    If I'm wrong, I'll buy you all lunch.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 7, 2014 9:44 a.m.

    USALover,

    I'm not sure if you remember last year's Windsor (DOMA) decision, but the Supreme Court ruled that it was a violation of Due Process and Equal Protection clauses (as set forth in the 5th and 14th Amendments) for the federal government to refuse to recognize a marriage solemnized in a state where it was legally valid. The decision invalidated part of DOMA and ordered the federal government to recognize those marriages.

    Regardless as to whether a state should or should not be compelled to allow same-sex couples to marry, how does a state escape that requirement to recognize a legally constituted marriage from another state where such marriages are permitted? If the federal government is required to recognize them under our Constitution, how can a state successfully argue that it is not?

    I think it's obvious that Utah will at the very least be compelled to recognize same-sex marriage, even if it is not compelled to allow them to take place in-state. It's likely, though, that all of Amendment 3 will be invalidated.

  • MaxPower Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 9:57 a.m.

    @USALover

    5-4 ruling in favor of states deciding marriage laws for their citizens
    ==============

    The States already can decide their marriage laws, as long as they do not violate the Rights of the Citizens as set forth in the US Constitution. The restrictions must be of such that harm can be shown if the marriages were allowed. Thus far, no State has been able to prove harm.

    Even if Utah were to win, and allowed to only perform Hetero marriages how would you justify not recognizing a same sex marriage from Massachusetts? The Full Faith and Credit Clause in Article IV would compel Utah to recognize that marriage, even if it would not perform that marriage in the first place.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Aug. 7, 2014 1:03 p.m.

    "---You mean the original intent of equality, liberty and justice for ALL Americans? Or only those you approve of?"

    I mean the intent of those who drafted and ratified the Constitution and amendments and not some fashionable meaning.

    Again, the right to SSM didn't exist in 1972. It didn't magically appear in the fine print in the past 40 years.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    @SoCalChris;

    The right to EQUAL TREATMENT existed for ALL Americans, which is incluseive of LGBT Americans, not just heterosexual Americans.

    No matter how you spin it, the 14th Amendment covers us too; even if you think it's only "fashionable".

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 1:45 p.m.

    @SoCalChris
    "the right to SSM didn't exist in 1972. It didn't magically appear in the fine print in the past 40 years."

    According to your logic, the right to desegregation didn't exist in 1896, it didn't' magically appear in Brown v Board of Education decades later?

  • Jimmyisliberal Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 4:23 p.m.

    @Christoph...Have you ever ate a piece of shellfish? Hope not because according to your Bible you have committed a major sin. Wasn't aware we all took a time machine back to the 1600's! Separation of church and state my friend. Welcome to 2014.

  • skrekk Dane, WI
    Aug. 7, 2014 5:51 p.m.

    @USAlover
    "If I'm wrong, I'll buy you all lunch."

    Before you place that bet you might want to read Scalia's irate dissent in the Windsor case. That ruling is why your side hasn't won a single marriage equality case yet. I think you're down 0-34 right now.

  • alkimst San Bernardino, CA
    Aug. 7, 2014 8:53 p.m.

    Utah, you're gonna loose. Looks like a Substantive Due Process issue. Also Equal Protection. Utah is giving marriage to one class of people and denying it to another. Bottom line... you're gonna loose in a 6-3 decision.

    Remember, you heard it here.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Aug. 8, 2014 1:24 a.m.

    USU-Logan,

    Good argument. But the 13th and 14th Amendments were about race not gender. Why else was there a need for the 19th Amend and why was there a push for the ERA?

    The Constitution has always recognized gender differences. We can still segregate restrooms and locker rooms by gender but not by race. The point is that even after Loving SCOTUS said SSM was not a Constitutional right.

    Ranch, I support civil unions and protections for gays. I don't judge anyone for being gay. But I stop short of saying that homosexuality is equal in every way to heterosexuality and that gender is a meaningless feature like hair or eye color when it comes to marriage. That's what SSM does and I don't see where the Constitution requires it.

  • TheTrueVoice West Richland, WA
    Aug. 8, 2014 8:56 a.m.

    @SoCalChris: "Ranch, I support civil unions and protections for gays. I don't judge anyone for being gay."

    While it may comfort you to proclaim you "don't judge anyone for being gay", in fact, your stated positions on the matter indicate you absolutely *do* hold judgmental animus toward them.

    To wit: you would not allow them to marry, but instead you wish to enforce a second-tier standard upon them - they can have "civil unions". I am sure you are aware that "separate but equal" construct was found unconstitutional long ago.

    "That's what SSM does and I don't see where the Constitution requires it."

    Well, actually... yes, it does.

    And, of course, the 14th Amendment: "No State shall make or enforce **ANY** law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

    It is this passage within Section 1 of the 14th Amendment that will lead to marriage equality throughout this country, once these various appeals run their course.

  • USU-Logan Logan, UT
    Aug. 8, 2014 12:25 p.m.

    @SoCalChris,

    where does the 14th amendment say it is about race not about gender? it is for all Americans, black or white, man or woman, gay or straight.

    And even if 14th amendment is only about race, did the court understand racial issues the same way in 1896 and in 1954? Of course not, the court, along with American society, evolved too.

    Just because the court saw gay right issues in a certain way in the 70s, doesn't mean it will keep it that way now, and definitely not forever.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Aug. 8, 2014 12:33 p.m.

    @SoCalChris;

    You stated that marriage for LGBT couples is not explicitly spelled out in the Constitution.

    Amendment 9:

    "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

    Simply stated, the 9th Amendment says that not all rights are listed in the Constitution.

    If "civil unions" are so great that you're willing to "let us have them", why don't you have one instead of a marriage? Fortunately, our right to marriage, while not listed explicitely in the Constitution, exists nevertheless.

  • Lyn52 Saint George, UT
    Aug. 10, 2014 7:26 a.m.

    You never put civil rights up for a vote as did Utah. I really think the supreme court will decide that the lower court ruling will stand.