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Gay Marriages & Prop 8 Go To Court

by JC Brotherhood

The Federal District Court in San Francisco, heard opening arguments on Monday on California’s controversial Proposition 8.

Whatever the courts decision it’s certain appeal will set the issue of marriage equality on the path to decided by the US Supreme Court. The subsequent decision will take the question out of the hands of state lawmakers and public referendums once and for all.

This debate has been mis-characterized to date as a ‘€œCampaign Legalizing Gay Marriage.’€ It is arguably the sort of case the Supreme Court was conceived for, those issues which should clearly not be left up to a popular vote or populist agendas but scrutinized unemotionally through the lens of our Constitution and Bill of Rights. The process of legislation cannot seek to either grant or withhold rights guaranteed under our constitution no matter what a simple majority opinion might be at any particular place or time.

The plaintiffs in this case have the proper perspective. Their argument is that it does grievous harm to any group to be denied its rights guaranteed under the 14th amendment, including entering into the legal social contract we know as ‘€œMarriage.’€

I looked for this so called ‘€œlegal definition of marriage’€ on the New York State website with information on obtaining a marriage license in this state and didn’t find it. May be someone reading this can show it to me.

Hang on folks, this is going to be a bumpy ride. The judge presiding over the case for the 9th District is described as a ‘€œlibertarian’€ appointed by George H.W. Bush and has already been admonished for agreeing to a proposal to air the proceedings on a YouTube feed, which the Plaintiffs felt could be used to intimidate potential witnesses. The US Supreme court issued a temporary stay on broadcasting the proceedings.

Historically, our Federal Court System rules in favor of granting more rights under the Constitution and eventually reversing itself  when initially making rulings that would infringe upon them.

It is for this reason I remain cautiously optimistic that, while it may take some time, this right so essential to many, including but not limited to those of us who seek to create and raise families, will be guaranteed for all.

Nyack Farmer's Market

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