21 Jan The “Supreme” Decision
Three times the controversy over same sex marriage has come before the Supreme Court. This is what has been happening.
- In 2012, the 9th Circuit Court ruled that California must legalize gay marriage because they had in the past. The narrow ruling only affected California.
- In Oct 2012, the Supreme Court decided to take the case.
- In June 2013, instead of ruling on Proposition 8, the Supreme Court dismissed the case saying the defendants had no standing.
- Gay marriage became legal in California because the Supreme Court allowed the decision of the 9th circuit to stand.
- In the spring and summer of 2014 the 10th and 4th circuit courts ruled that same sex marriage is a constitutional right.
- In Oct 2014, the Supreme Court dismissed all cases concerning same sex marriage. The rulings of the 10th and 4th circuit courts took effect, essentially overthrowing laws and amendments in 9 states: Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.
- Soon thereafter, the 9th circuit court broadened their ruling and over turned marriage laws and amendments in Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, and Arizona.
Gay marriage became legal in all of these states because the Supreme Court justices would not make a ruling. Then something surprising happened.
- The 6th Circuit court came up with a different conclusion. They ruled that the constitution does not require the legalization of same sex marriage and marriage laws should be decided by the people and their elected legislatures.
Now, for the third time, the Supreme Court is asked to rule on same sex marriage.
- Just last week, the Supreme Court justices decided to hear arguments over same sex marriage a second time. We can expect their ruling by the end of June.
In my own opinion, the Supreme Court taking the 6th circuit marriage case confirms the intentions of the court. I believe that if the majority of the justices believed that same sex marriage is not a constitutional right, they could have made that ruling in 2013 when they heard arguments in Proposition 8. They could have taken on the cases from the 10th and 4th circuit courts. They could have even put the cases from the 10th and 4th circuit courts on hold while waiting on the other circuit courts. They did none of that. Quietly over time, the Supreme Court has been doing nothing but allowing lower judges to declare that same sex marriage is constitutionally mandated. What will they do this year? Time will only tell. Some people are optimistic. I am not. I think the United States is in for another Roe v Wade type ruling. However, I don’t believe this will be the end of the debate. Marriage, like life, is sacred to many. The battle will wage on despite what the majority of the Supreme Court justices declare in June.