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Traditional marriage is the best place to rear children, Utah appeal says

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  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Feb. 7, 2014 11:30 p.m.

    The -problem with the racial comparison is that there is no easy definition of race. The fact that Virginia used different schemas to define Native American (must be at least 1/16th) and African-American (and identifiable African ancestry) goes to show that race is not definable.

    On the other hand. gender is definable. It is also central to all functions of marriage, and part of the common law definition of marriage. On the other hand, laws against inter-racial marriage were a fairly recent innovation. For the first 40 years of colonial Virignia they had none.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Feb. 7, 2014 11:10 p.m.

    People ignore the fact that the man/woman definition of marriage is built around principals of minimal interference. It is built around creating a form of marriage that moves towards the goals the state has identified. Shelby dismissed the state's stated goals, and did not admit that it had shown these were its goals.

    The state does not have to deny any other class, because the way the state defines marriage the only controlling issue is if people are male and female or not. The state has not chosen to define other classes in marital law. To insist it has to address these other classes in defining its law is ludicrous.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Feb. 7, 2014 10:51 p.m.

    The issue is the form of marriage, not individual marriages. Thus for marriage to be focused on children, marriage needs to be in a form that produces children. I am beginning to think some people just refuse to even try to listen to what others say, which is why this debate has been so vicious.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Feb. 7, 2014 10:41 p.m.

    The only "junk science" is that used by the pro-homosexual lobby. They are the ones who have for years been gaming the results of studies. The clear indication of broad studies using accepted sampling methods is that children fair best when raised by their biological parents in a stable relationship.

    The way to make this most likely is to define marriage as a man/woman institution.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Feb. 7, 2014 11:04 a.m.

    @ LovelyDeseret: Catholic adoption agencies in MA are still performing adoptions - what they are not doing is acting as a state agency placing children in state custody into foster and/or adoptive homes. The interesting thing about that, is that they were placing children in homes headed by same-sex couples until a newspaper article brought that to the attention of the Diocese, who told them they needed to stop. Once they no longer agreed to abide by the contract they had with the state of MA, MA stopped using them as a resource to place children.

    You can still do a private adoption through Catholic adoption agencies in MA, just as you can through LDS adoption agencies in MA.

    As for your claim that marriage and reproduction rates are declining in areas where same-sex marriage is allowed - well, those declines started long before same-sex marriage was an issue. So unless same-sex marriage has a time machine so that it can retroactively affect marriage and birth rates, there is not only not a causation there, there is not a correlation.

  • forget-me-not West Valley City, UT
    Feb. 6, 2014 5:13 p.m.

    @1A
    As a heterosexual, happily married woman, I recognize that laws are laws. I also recognize that not all laws conform to the Constitution of the United States. No matter how many voters and how many laws in Alabama tried to keep Black children out of their Whites-only schools in the 1950s & 60s, it was unconstitutional bigotry and SCOTUS declared it to be so. No matter how many voters and how many laws in Utah today try to keep the rights, responsibilities, respect and benefits of marriage unattainable for same-sex couples, it is unconstitutional and will be found to be so by SCOTUS. What appears to be shouting to you is a minority segment of our society that has been silenced and harassed for centuries trying to be heard by those with closed ears and closed minds.

    No one I am aware of wants to force your religion or any other religion to perform marriages for those they deem unworthy. What they do want is for our government to give them equal protection and opportunity under the law to lawfully marry the consenting adult they love.

  • desert Potsdam, 00
    Feb. 6, 2014 1:25 p.m.

    People in here are screaming like kids for icecream,
    what a tender debacle of misunderstandings.
    My confusion added is to start screaming for change of subject.

    What about putting the whole legal matter on experimental test run for a couple of years, say within some county or age-related probing. Would not hurt anyone ?

    Those who want their icecream right now, you may wonder about some real issue then !

  • LovelyDeseret Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 6, 2014 12:40 p.m.

    @Lane Meyer

    You side stepped and misrepresented my argument and then came up with an answer based on what you wanted me to write instead of what I wrote.

    It seems to me that the LGBT community is simply screaming at the State of Utah, ignoring our arguments and dismissing our fear of religious persecution and litigation.

    I don't expect you to agree with the people of Utah, but I do ask that you actually listen to our arguments and concerns, instead of pretending like we don't have any and shouting at us.

  • Dark Horse Farmington, UT
    Feb. 6, 2014 12:27 p.m.

    @Really-Wow
    OK...your ignorance REALLY shines through. Did I choose to be something unpopular in the state of Theocracy ridden Utah? No. Did I CHOOSE to be bullied and made obscene comments to? No. I also think you should read my comments closer I'm not homosexual, I'm bisexual big difference.

  • 1A-all the way SLC, UT
    Feb. 6, 2014 8:25 a.m.

    Holy guacamole, now Gays are comparing outlawing divorce to justifying gay marriage....Really.... Anytime you try to justify something it is wrong in the first place...and they think Utah does't have a good argument against SS marriage.....wow

    HERE IS THE BOTTOM LINE. Laws are Laws, Laws come from the values of the people. Until Utahs' values change about gay marriage, IT SHOULD NOT BECOME LAW.

  • forget-me-not West Valley City, UT
    Feb. 6, 2014 2:22 a.m.

    My husband and I were unable to have children. The assertions of the appeal mean that:
    1) since we wouldn't have been the biological parents, we shouldn't have adopted children.
    2) since my marriage could not produce children it is no more a "traditional marriage" than a same-sex union.
    3) if Utah marriages are meant be "child-centric," the thousands of same-sex couples having and raising children participate in much more legitimate marriages than I do with my 30+ years so-called legal Utah marriage.

    If Utah marriage truly were child-centric, the State would outlaw divorce in heterosexual marriages with children. That more Utah marriages end in divorce than the national average (see Deseret News 01/05/13) belies the State claim of child-centric marriages. If Utah marriage were truly all about the welfare of our children, our first priority would be outlawing divorce in traditional heterosexual marriage or at least carefully screening heterosexual couples to ascertain if their marriages would end in divorce. Once we had accomplished that, we could turn our attention to denying gay couples their civil rights.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 5:29 p.m.

    @LovelyDeseret;

    "The Catholics in Massachusetts lost ... their adoption agencies shut down".

    -- False. The Catholics CHOSE to shut down, you can google the truth written by a former board member of Catholic Charities of MA.

    "In places where gays are marrying, marriage is diminishing."

    -- Not the gay's fault. Blame educated women.

    "Utah wants to avoid the destruction of religious freedoms..."

    -- And in doing so, you're violating OUR religious freedom.

    @Snapdragon;

    The 14th Amendment.

  • rick122948 boise, id
    Feb. 5, 2014 4:53 p.m.

    one of the crux issues that seems somehow lost in so much of the divisive discussion, is that all marriages between a man and a woman are not havens for children. I can't remember the last child abuse case I read about involving same sex couples. And, not all gay relationships and/or heterosexual relationships are loving and committed relationships. Marriage is a long term commitment of two people to be monogamous with each other and to be afforded the legal protections that engenders.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 4:52 p.m.

    @Lane Myer

    And all of the other LGBT posters who comment and press like on each other's comments. I am still waiting for the proof or source material for the post dated Feb. 4th at 3:30 p.m.

    I went to BYU during the 1980's and received my M.S. in 1988. I was fairly well connected as to what was going on there and never heard a word of this.

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 4:37 p.m.

    History shows us that marriage is not defined by those who are excluded. Otherwise, why would we allow opposite sex convicted felon abusers to civil marry? Interracial couples wanted to participate in the institution that traditionally did not allow them to marry. There are no Interracial marriage licenses. There are no felon marriage licenses. There are no non-procreative marriage licenses. By being allowed to participate and/or strengthen the existing institution, there is only one marriage license for all. Nothing appears to have been re-defined. Even "traditional voting" was not re-defined by allowing women the right to vote.

    The "redefinition argument" appears to require further thought, and testing for a rational basis in fact.

  • CBAX Provo, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 4:09 p.m.

    One thing: How do truckloads of orphans from chicago or other examples of society failing an excuse for anything?

    It's a good emotional argument to try and lump all "heterosexuals" together to say something to the effect of "Don't talk about Marriage because some woman got pregnant before and wasn't married".

    Just because there is a whole subculture of the united states that is gang run and worships the material better than anyone with money, that happens to have 70 percent of kids out of wedlock doesn't mean that SSM is more valid. I am not saying that SSM is right wrong or blah but how do these points even help.

    Yes, kids are born into terrible situations but that shouldn't be an argument for SSM being legal. Like I said, it's a good emotional argument that appeals on the surface but further examination exposes.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    Feb. 5, 2014 3:21 p.m.

    To "Testimony" no, you quoted the utah law that says that you can't perform a marriage that is prohibited. There is nothing stopping the gay couple from calling themselves married.

    Do you wish to try again. Find me the law that says that if 2 gay people declare themselves married that they will be put into jail?

  • Bob K portland, OR
    Feb. 5, 2014 3:09 p.m.

    Christian 24-7
    Murray, UT
    "Placing children in a home that offers less than a committed mother and father is making them second class citizens."

    ---Can't WAIT to read the article tomorrow about you organizing a "freedom train" to bring all the children of unwed Chicago mothers to Utah, for adoption into mormon homes.

    Or maybe it will be all the children of divorced families in the Bible Belt, where phony morality results in poor contraception and forced marriages

    It won't be from Massachusetts, the State with the longest record of marriage equality and the very lowest divorce rate.

  • Christian 24-7 Murray, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 2:15 p.m.

    Constitution King is confused about who is making some people second class citizens.

    The first class citizen children will have a mother and father committed to each other and to the raising of those children.

    Those who conceive children without preparing their family with a father and a mother to raise them, are the ones creating second class citizens. The marriage law just aims to give incentive for people to do the right thing with regard to their children, for the good of children and of society as a whole.

    In cases where children don't have parents that want to or are capable of raising them, society can give them first class care only by giving them to a mother and father, committed by marriage, to raise them.

    Placing children in a home that offers less than a committed mother and father is making them second class citizens.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Feb. 5, 2014 1:37 p.m.

    @MissPiggie: Before you go on your big marriage and murder spree, perhaps you should know that you can only collect one survivor benefit from Social Security. I also think you're having trouble with this whole "same gender" concept. Your aunt and uncle are the same gender as you? Curious. Oh, and incest? Those laws are not going anywhere.

    @RedShirtCalTech: You're just playing at being obtuse, right? I cited you the law that says it's illegal for anyone in Utah to conduct the wedding, even just a church service. The rest of Utah's anti-SSM laws simply make it unavailable and treat them as not married under any circumstances, even if married elsewhere. They would be subject to state fraud charges for truthfully claiming married status such as on tax filings. See 30-1-2 "Marriages prohibited and void."

    Here's something interesting: The traditional Quaker wedding doesn't involve an officiant, only witnesses. The couple essentially officiates their own wedding, both of them violating Utah Code 30-1-15. That's a criminal violation.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 12:58 p.m.

    I read the appellate brief, and am astounded at how poorly written and argued it is. I have read and heard better legal arguments from first-year law students. The money going to the attorneys hired by the State of Utah is being wasted.

  • Miss Piggie Phoenix, AZ
    Feb. 5, 2014 12:23 p.m.

    @Testimony:
    "For that matter, how can you even have parents deployed overseas, away from their children for years at a time..."

    They have skype don't they?

    A larger issue... how is it that God, who rarely shows himself, manages to run the affairs of His children on earth?

    I think this SSM thing should be approved... which would mean I could marry my sister, brother, aunt, uncle and the mother of the girl next door. I'm starting to get excited anticipating what this all can mean to my happiness and welfare... Just think, I could be the recipient of several spousal social security death benefits. I can hardly wait!!

  • rick122948 boise, id
    Feb. 5, 2014 11:53 a.m.

    When are we going to stop trying to legislate religious views into law. The founding fathers were very specific in separation of church and state. Laws should not restrain the free expression of religion, but one groups religious views whether majority or not should not be legislated to infringe on any citizen's right to self expression or equal protection under the 1st and 14th amendments to the constitution. I am LDS and do not believe that SSM is decreed of GOD, but that being said, I don't plan on marrying a man, but if I had other views I would want them protected just as soundly.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Feb. 5, 2014 11:26 a.m.

    @ 1A-all the way

    Thank you for your sense of humor! That was precious!

    Enough laughter for now, let me explain something to you Dear 1A.

    When you address us as GAYS, you are doing something very insulting and yet very honest in expressing the way you see us. You define us only by our sexual orientation. You forget that we are human beings as you, men and women, sons and daughters, uncles and aunts, teachers, lawyers, policemen, soldiers, etc. in other words regular, typical members of society.

    You wrote:
    "Gays, Please dont show your arrogance, that is not going to make people favor you or your case"

    1A; when we were children we wanted society to favor our case. Most people are changing and they are favoring "our case". However, at this moment we are looking for the justice system and the law of the land to favor our case.

    1A you are free to continue having your perspective about us and anything else you want. I don't think we are being arrogant, I think is more like, we are are fed up of your bigotry and we will not take it anymore.

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 10:56 a.m.

    Lovely Deseret,

    Catholic did NOT lose their right to run their adoption agencies. They CHOSE to close them rather than fund them totally by church monies (like the LDS do) and not take state funds to help them. If they take state funds, they must serve all the citizens of the state, which, believe it or not, includes gays. It was their choice to not continue.

    Why didn't they want to continue to serve like the LDS adoption agencies do with just their own funds is a question that they will have to answer.

    You cannot discriminate using funds collected from law-abiding, tax paying citizens that you just do not think are worthy (per your church beliefs). That is unconstitutional, btw.

    Marriage in Massachusetts has not changed since gay marriage was introduced. It still has the lowest divorce rate in the nation! We can't say that about Utah and that is a fact!

  • CBAX Provo, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    Perfect. The constitution is a a thing now. That's just fine. Now back away from the State-militia only argument: dead horse. Ha. (I thought it was outdated and whatnot. Did you know they had slaves too???)

    Everyone! Listen! Now that proponents of human rights, and all things good and holy (expression) are using the constitution as a basis for extending human rights to everyone, perhaps the whole constitution should be followed.

    Also: On behalf of everyone: Men may now marry men and lets get rid of the fed.

    Thank you and good day!

    Close();

  • REALLY-WOW SLC, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 10:30 a.m.

    @ Dark Horse

    @REALLY-WOW
    Really? The SAME rights? Let me clarify a bit...People who are LGBT CAN still get fired and denied services in Utah. That's why a few of the senators are pushing for the anti-discrimination bill. How do I know? You may ask....well let's just say from personal experience! I was almost kicked out of several High Schools and other services for being Bisexual.

    Yea, and I can be fired or denied service if I choose drugs, and kids can be kicked out of high school for drugs and many other things, It is all about choice, and please don't say you didn't choose to be gay. ha.

    @Testimony - oh I see, for those rare occasional hospital visits. ok????? Plan a funeral??? huh. really. talk with the family, it should be what they want too, not just you...

    any others?????

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    Feb. 5, 2014 10:29 a.m.

    To "Dark Horse" people that are ugly, middleclass, straight, have tatoos, lazy, smelly, or whatever can still get fired or denied services in utah. What is the point of making yet another anti-discrimination law? Now it just makes the government the thought police.

    Depending on your job, I could see some concerns with having a bisexual person in a school. Did you think about that? Would you put a pedaphile in an elementary school?

    To "Testimony" tell me what law prohibits SSM? Yes they cannot do something that is prohibited, but where is the prohibition? What part of the Utah code states that it is illegal for 2 gay people to get married?

    Nice try, but you missed the part about there not being a prohibition to gays getting married.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Feb. 5, 2014 10:01 a.m.

    @RedShirtCalTech: Nice try, but totally, unequivocally, absolutely wrong. Utah Code 30-1-15 (2): " Any person who knowingly, with or without a license, solemnizes a marriage between two adults prohibited by law is guilty of a class A misdemeanor."

    @Tekakaromatagi: No one is changing the "type of union." It's still only two, unrelated, adult, consenting, legally unencumbered individuals. No, you can't marry your aunt, or your uncle. Sorry. Besides, you're already related to them for inheritance purposes. Marriages establish a family relationship where there wasn't already one.

    @1AallTheWay: The proEquality supporters are more than willing to take that risk. America: Majority rule, but minority rights. Maybe you'd be happier in Russia, Uganda or Nigeria? No pesky individual rights for gay people.

    @ReallyWow: Surely you can't believe that "gays have equal rights" already, without marriage. They don't even have hospital visitation rights, or the right to plan their loved one's funeral. The law makes them complete strangers at times like those, and hostile blood relations can step in and be vindictive and exclusionary to the partner.

  • Dark Horse Farmington, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 9:48 a.m.

    @REALLY-WOW
    Really? The SAME rights? Let me clarify a bit...People who are LGBT CAN still get fired and denied services in Utah. That's why a few of the senators are pushing for the anti-discrimination bill. How do I know? You may ask....well let's just say from personal experience! I was almost kicked out of several High Schools and other services for being Bisexual.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 9:41 a.m.

    Let democracy work ...allow the people in each state to decide the marriage issue by their vote...instead of a single activist judge.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 8:47 a.m.

    Good luck with that argument. It's failed multiple times before. But maybe it will work this time.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    Feb. 5, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    To those of you using the case of Loving vs. Virginia to compare that case to SSM, you are lying. In Loving vs. Virginia there were laws that stated that interracial marriage was a punishable offense. There are no laws preventing SSM. If 2 gays found a preacher to perform a marriage ceremony for them today, the government would not care and cannot do anything legally to them.

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    Feb. 5, 2014 8:35 a.m.

    "The state's arguments are flawed and will ultimately fail because the U.S. Constitution neither knows nor tolerates classes among American citizenship."

    Unions between men and women are procreational. In most instances, they are able to procreate and bear children. Other relationships are non-procreational. Two gay men living together, someone living with his aunt, a brother and a sister even if they don't live in the same house, everyone at the Acme widget family.

    If we take one specific type of non-procreational union and give them marriage benefits, then we have to extend those benefits to all non-procreational unions. When my mother dies, I want to get her social security benefits. I love my mother. Why are two gay men professing love to one another of more value than me loving my mother?

    The reason that I should not get my mother's social security benefits is because my relationship with my mother is not procreational. It therefore, does not need any special benefits from society like a marriage between a man and a woman.

  • 1A-all the way SLC, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 8:20 a.m.

    Why do all gays think that this is a done deal, that Utah is "wasting their money".

    Gays, Please dont show your arrogance, that is not going to make people favor you or your case.

    This quote is a good one. And was solved by the state.

    "This is an issue that ought to be determined by the state and not the federal government," Adams said. "That alone, in my mind, is worthy of pursuing."

    This is a great argument. Mr. Shelby overstepped his authority in this one to have even started this mess.

    Gays, think about the other side. Lets say that most Utahns are for Gay Marraige, and it is passed by a majority vote, and is made legal, by law. Then some judge comes in and changes the law based off his understand of the meaning of the law, not the letter of the law. Or what the people want. How would you feel???????

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Feb. 5, 2014 7:47 a.m.

    If, as the state suggests, the state's paramount interest is seeing children “raised by their biological mother and father within a stable marital union,” what's to become of the National Guard? Is it no longer to be open to married enlistees? For, nothing will debilitate a household faster than the death of one of the parents deployed overseas. For that matter, how can you even have parents deployed overseas, away from their children for years at a time, and still meet the state's supposed paramount interest? And, what about other occupations with high mortality rates? Are parents to be banned from those dangerous occupations so as to preserve them to raise their biological children? Firefighters, miners, fishermen, lumberjacks, helicopter pilots?

    Is the state also planning to massively increase unemployment insurance and the welfare system to make sure every family with children is adequately supported and housed?

    For, if the state takes the usual GOP laissez faire approach to family support and married worker safety, then its supposed justification for marriage discrimination is just another grandiose fabrication which the Court should dismiss.

  • Vince here San Diego, CA
    Feb. 5, 2014 6:37 a.m.

    In other news, no one is outlawing divorce... contrary to New Testament teachings.

  • Snapdragon Midlothian, VA
    Feb. 5, 2014 6:33 a.m.

    The appeal states,

    "This is an issue that ought to be determined by the state and not the federal government," Adams said. "That alone, in my mind, is worthy of pursuing."

    This is a great argument. Mr. Shelby overstepped his authority in this one to have even started this mess.

  • abenq slc, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 6:29 a.m.

    Thank you AG for hiring this law firm, Utah's law is surely going to be overturned. Love it.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 5:37 a.m.

    @Cinci Man 6:31 p.m. Feb. 4, 2014

    How about arguing that the gender basis does not deprive anyone of equal rights? Any person has the right to marry someone of the opposite sex. One man and one woman is everyone's right.

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

    That's the same argument tat was made before LOVING v VIGINIA handled the issue in 1967 only, then, the argument was about marrying someone of the same race. Guess what -- it didn't work.

  • TimBehrend Auckland NZ, 00
    Feb. 5, 2014 3:06 a.m.

    Anyone who suggests that marriage has 'always' had the same meaning displays a lack of knowledge about the history of the range of contractual legal arrangements that have been called by this name -- including the practices of their own great grandparents for many readers of the Deseret News. It is an elementary sociological truism that family structures are products of economic forces; they are negotiated social formations in which survival activities and reproduction are located. This desperate strategy of laying claim to an English word that can refer to a multitude of contractual arrangements and insisting that it must be narrowly construed according to a definition provided by someone's god or prophets or scriptures will find no purchase in the courts.

    People of Utah unite, you have nothing to lose but millions of tax dollars in a hopeless campaign against the civil rights of fellow citizens.

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 1:32 a.m.

    @TsovQuaj, unfortunately what you read does not square with ANY main stream medical, psychological, sociological organization.. That alone will prove to be problematic for the State of Utah.

    For example: The American Academy of Pediatrics states:
    "Extensive data available from more than 30 years of research reveal that children raised by gay and lesbian parents have demonstrated resilience with regard to social, psychological, and sexual health despite economic and legal disparities and social stigma. Many studies have demonstrated that children's well-being is affected much more by their relationships with their parents, their parents' sense of competence and security, and the presence of social and economic support for the family than by the gender or the sexual orientation of their parents. Lack of opportunity for same-gender couples to marry adds to families’ stress, which affects the health and welfare of all household members. Because marriage strengthens families and, in so doing, benefits children’s development, children should not be deprived of the opportunity for their parents to be married. Paths to parenthood that include assisted reproductive techniques, adoption, and foster parenting should focus on competency of the parents rather than their sexual orientation."

  • REALLY-WOW SLC, UT
    Feb. 5, 2014 1:25 a.m.

    Laws should be made by the people, most people don't want, it is simple. Why try to force it down the majorities throats......why do gays even want to get married. They have the same rights anyway......just be happy, or cant they be happy. IDK. Just thinking aloud......They honestly don't think they will stick it out without a religion holding them together. You know something to hope for and strive to have in the next life. I guess I, and 2 million Utahn just don't get it, call us crazy.....

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Feb. 5, 2014 12:10 a.m.

    @samhill:
    "Does Utah, and other states, indeed have that authority [to define marriage]..."

    Indeed it does per the US Constitution Amendment 10. Defining marriage is not listed as an authority of the federal government. Even SCOTUS tells us that the federal DOMA was unconstitutional.

    @a bit of reality:
    "How does it promote religious freedom to make it illegal for a Unitarian Universalist minister to marry two members of her church that want to marry?"

    The problem is... if that Unitarian Church refused SSM they may well lose their tax exempt status.

    kiddsport @ 10:50 a.m.: Excellent points. This is all the state attorneys need to win the argument.

    @kiddsport (10:50 a.m. Feb. 4, 2014)

    Good post. Your points are all that's needed for Utah attorneys to win the case.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:43 p.m.

    If the SSM crowd believed in freedom, they would not force their beliefs on everyone else, including children. They could live and let live. But they have the need to prove to themselves that their relationship is equal, which is fallacy because it isn't, and they take the rest of society hostage to do it, including taking children hostage. I am not saying that people aren't equal, but SS relationships are definitely different than man/woman relationships, in a way that makes them not equal. The relationship is not equal, no matter how many judges or laws try make it so.

    Truly the government should be smaller and less intrusive in our lives, our religious, or lack of religious lives. Then SSM wouldn't be an issue. We would truly be free to live as we feel is best.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:36 p.m.

    @AllBlack:
    "14 amendment is about equal treatment."

    What's so unequal about a marriage law that says all can marry provided the marriage is between one man and one woman?

    If the law goes beyond one man/one woman marriage arrangement, then any combination of marriage such as polygamy, sibs, close relatives, etc., would also have to be legalized. Do the citizens of Utah want that? I don't think so.

    @cocosweet:
    "Marriage as child-centric? I suppose that makes my marriage a sham since we didn't have children?"

    How is it that two married to each other can have children?

    "Perhaps we should only allow those who are fertile to marry?"

    Marriage is reserved to those who have the sexual configurations to have children. Two men can't. Two women can't. End of story.

    @FT:
    "Seems a first year law student could have prepared a stronger argument than this."

    Why don't you write the 'stronger arguments' on a piece of paper and send it to the state attorney's office? And while you're at it, post it on this thread.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:59 p.m.

    @Berkeley reader:
    "What about those thousand of Utah children being raised by same sex parents?"

    Seems those children can continue to be raised. What does the lack of a piece of paper in an album have to do with raising children?

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:40 p.m.

    Great brief Mr. Schaerr, the best part was about how same-sex marriage has led to the deconstruction of marriage in Europe, along with earthquakes, floods, famine and sectarian wars among nations.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:21 p.m.

    Other thoughts on the brief - I am stunned that they argue as a point in their favor that the majority of religions in the state oppose SSM. “So, Justices, we not only want to be allowed to continue to discriminate against LGBTs, we also want the federal government to disregard the rights of those religions that don’t agree with us.”

    They follow this up with, in effect, “If you find anti-SSM laws discriminatory, soon religious-based institutions and religious people may not be allowed to discriminate against LGBTs.”

    Religion’s capacity to distort and disable the reasoning faculties of even the most gifted never ceases to amaze me.

    @BlackDiamond

    “Freedom comes when we are obedient to [God's] law.” Disturbingly Orwellian…

  • LovelyDeseret Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:15 p.m.

    @Two For Flinching

    A portion of the State of Utah's argument is that religions are being forced out in states such as Massachusetts. Churches are being sued etc. No more adoption agencies.

    Utah wants to avoid the destruction of religious freedoms that are currently happening in other states and countries.

    If this is all new to you, you are selectively picking the arguments that you want to hear instead of opening your mind to what is really going on.

  • Testimony Philadelphia, PA
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:13 p.m.

    The brief spends a lot of time and energy trying to show a statistical advantage to opposite-sex ("traditional") marriage over same-sex ("gay") marriage.

    There's one problem with this.

    We don't make laws that affect individuals based on group statistics.

    Inner-city black youths have statistically poor college graduation rates. Do we cut them off from college aid? No, some individuals will excel.

    Many Asians and Native Americans lack a gene for properly metabolizing alcohol and have a bad reaction. Do we ban entire ethnic groups from purchasing such beverages? No, that's impermissible discrimination.

    Many Northern European Jews are lactose intolerant. Should we forbid them buying pizza? Ditto.

    Even if straight couples were statistically better at parenting than gay couples (a refutable proposition, but okaaaay...), banning gay couples from marrying is impermissible discrimination, since some could still be better parents than some straight couples.

    There are many identifiable statistical variations between groups in America, but under our Constitution, we must treat all people as individuals, on their individual merits.

    The State is simply making a case for the opposite, for discrimination based on group membership.

  • LovelyDeseret Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:12 p.m.

    @Lane Meyer,

    To answer your questions.

    The Catholics in Massachusetts lost some of their religious freedoms. For example their adoption agencies shut down. Catholics are being sued for not being accommodating to the LGBT lifestyle. Utah doesn't want this to happen. This is all well documented. If this is new to you, you are refusing to see the other side of the issue.

    In places where gays are marrying, marriage is diminishing. Less children are with their biological parents. Utah doesn't want that.

  • TsovQuaj Springville, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:52 p.m.

    I read the full appeal and found the arguments to be eloquently presented and quite compelling. I think it is a bit sad that so many SSM proponents are so quick to dismiss the concerns about what is best for the children and treat it like it's some kind of a joke. As stated in the appeal- "children are the most vulnerable members of society, and the least capable of protecting their own interests." I've seen a few posters ask the question of how does SSM affect me? I encourage you to read the full appeal as it goes into great detail of how this does indeed affect you and society as a whole.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:50 p.m.

    @ BlackDiamond

    I think you would be happier in the Middle East. I'm sorry to tell you, but in the USA we are all free to live however we want. It's all well and good that you believe so strongly in your God. But the rest of us (thankfully) don't have to; nor do we have to abide by his laws. We are ruled by The Constitution, not the Bible..

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:40 p.m.

    @Red Wings ...read Genesis yourself (even though it is figurative). Where in any of the creation stories does gender play a role? The Gods (all male?) use their awesome power to command the elements. To create physical bodies for all animals, including humans. We assign our personal limited understanding to eternal processes far beyond our understanding. Why would we assume mortal biological processes apply throughout eternity?

    Both the first man and the most perfect man who ever lived were created by processes we can't comprehend. Eternal gender may be essential for some reason. Eternal plumbing may not be essential.

  • AllBlack San Diego, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:27 p.m.

    Maybe we all agree that a traditional marriage is the best place to raise children for social and religious reasons. But that isn't the problem here.

    The 14th amendment is in place and part of the highest law in the land, the constitution. You need to show why it is then OK to discriminate and not give access to several hundred rights and privileges that hetero couple have compared to those 'civil unions', including the right to adopt children. And it seems that this presentation isn't quite there.

    For me the answer is to just distinguish between the two with words, ie call one 'marriage' for hetero and the other 'SS marriage' for the gays with equivalent licences and rights before the government. But the courts aren't listening to me. Plus after that we could also do the same with polygamist marriages, those who don't involve under aged girls of course.

  • Utefan60 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:24 p.m.

    Traditional marriage is between ONE MAN and ONE WOMAN. Hummm interesting for Utah to have this definition. I was through the second wife of George Q Cannon and the third wife of Joseph Silver. Where was ONE MAN ONE WIFE???? Thank heavens that was the trend in Utah at that time or many of us in Utah would not be here! Kind of hard to negate history isn't it?

  • Surfs Up Huntington Beach, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:48 p.m.

    Its nature!! Children need a mom and a dad.. Traditional Marriage

  • Constitution Is King Brigham, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:37 p.m.

    Traditional Marriage in the United States = A person making a legal long-term commitment to the love of their life. Gays (LGBTs) just want the right to have a traditional marriage and the 14th amendments says they must be given that equal right.

  • Constitution Is King Brigham, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:33 p.m.

    The state of Utah is creating a bunch of second-class citizens with this defense.
    Single moms = Second Class Citizens
    Single dads = Second Class Citizens
    Childless Marriages = Second Class Citizens
    Children of Single Moms = Second Class Citizens
    Children of Single Dads = Second Class Citizens
    Adopted Children = Second Class Citizens
    Gays = Second Class Citizens

    We'll have more second-class citizens than first class citizens.

  • Constitution Is King Brigham, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:31 p.m.

    So let's see... We've already got thousands of gay couples in Utah, legally raising children together. Amendment 3 does NOTHING to stop them from doing so. So how does defending amendment 3 make certain these children in existing gay homes will suddenly get both a mother and a father in the home? This defense team is worthless. Gay marriage is coming back to Utah, very soon.

  • Constitution Is King Brigham, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:28 p.m.

    We paid $300,000 EXTRA for this??? Gonna LOSE BIG TIME!!!! The state is NOT currently banning gay couples from raising children. The state is NOT banning single moms from raising children. The state is NOT banning single dads from raising raising children. The ban on gay marriage does NOTHING to assure that children have a mom and a dad. It's the silliest thing I've ever heard. I'd flunk a 7th grade student for presenting such a bogus argument in a junior high civics class.

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:08 p.m.

    It's ironic that the same DN edition that features this headline also features a headline about a Utah stepfather who tortured and killed his stepson. Let's say that "Traditional marriage is the best place [sic] to raise children" -- or even rear them. Many have pointed out variations like single biological parents and single adoptive parents rearing kids. There are gradations of what is "best" and "worst" in anything. The state's argument in this case is weak.

  • Tiago Seattle, WA
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:04 p.m.

    Coach Biff states that he has personal knowledge of people who have "overcome same-sex attraction.
    Avenue states that "Though it may take work, a homosexual person can change and become heterosexual."
    I'm not sure of all the context or nuance behind those claims. Without nuance and context, I can only see those claims being hurtful to this discussion and especially to anyone dealing with SSA.
    For nuance, I'd encourage Mormons to google LDS Voices of Hope and watch the videos. These are faithful Mormons dealing with SSA--some celibate, some married to the opposite sex, but none of them claim to have changed orientation or "overcome" SSA. They just learn to deal with it. You'll see that people at the healthiest places in their lifes recognize it as a reality and aren't trying to change orientation, but instead focus on how to live with what they have.

  • Chilidog Somewhere, IL
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:54 p.m.

    "Traditional marriage is the best place to rear children, Utah appeal says"

    Er, OK.

    (Snicker)

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:33 p.m.

    I just love all the petty and childish arguments on the forum that basically say that my god is better than your god or my god allows this or my god allows that. Humans have sunk to such a low and sorry state that they can't even debate with each other without hiding behind the robes of the gods they can't even prove exist.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:31 p.m.

    How about arguing that the gender basis does not deprive anyone of equal rights? Any person has the right to marry someone of the opposite sex. One man and one woman is everyone's right.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:26 p.m.

    @ Coach Biff

    " You will need to be careful here because there are a lot of us that have personal knowledge of such"

    Please do enlighten us. I'm sure you have data to corroborate your certitude. You may like to share your information with many churches who have been changing their practice and advice regarding Sex Therapy, because they see that is not working for them or those who follow this therapy.

  • merich39 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:22 p.m.

    I'm hetero, married 20 yrs with 3 kids. No one has yet explained to me how a same sex marriage will endanger my kids.

    Furthermore, if a same sex couple is already raising a child, how will allowing that same sex couple to marry endanger the child they are already raising?

    In fact, I would prefer my kids to know that the same sex couples who are living together are married as opposed to knowing the same sex couples who are living together are not married. It reinforces in my kid's minds that couples living together should be married. Society benefits when couples marrying rather than just shacking up. We should be encouraging those types of committed, married relationships in all couples, both hetero and same-sex.

  • Evidence Not Junk Science Iron, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:10 p.m.

    @Chris A re: "Marriage is between a man and a woman. Period."

    Regrettably that kind of argument simply did not pass constitutional muster (due process and equal protection) when folks claimed that "Marriage is between people of the same Race."

    While your argument looks great on a bumper sticker, beyond that there just is not any constitutional value.

  • D4inSLC SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:10 p.m.

    Its hard to believe the argument that it is all about the children, when the State is dead last in the nation when it comes to spending per child.

  • BlackDiamond Provo, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:09 p.m.

    For those who claim that they don't believe in the same God that I believe! It is that same God that created this earth and you and I. Whether you believe in it or not, I'm sorry but he does live and he did created man to marry a woman. If he did not in the first place there will not be any you or I. And christians that support gay marriage, that does not mean we're going to change the law. Wrong will always be wrong even if everyone is doing it. Right will be right even if no one is doing it. Freedom comes when we are obedient to the law. Imagine what would happen to everyone if people change every single law there is. Stop trying to break the law. Stop gay marriage.

  • Mr_Normal utah, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 6:07 p.m.

    The LAW doesn't give a hoot about what is supposedly best for the children.
    It's about how the legal term is and will be defined.

    It's going to be as simple as that.
    Don't be pulling on the heart strings of justice. Justice doesn't care.

  • Avenue Vernal, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:44 p.m.

    @ Karen R.
    Actually, according to God, homosexual relationships are an abomination. Though it may take work, a homosexual person can change and become heterosexual, which is the only marriage and family type God will accept, no matter what the laws or the professionals say.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:42 p.m.

    @Mike Richards
    Two reasons why the kids argument doesn't work for me, these couples already have kids. It's not illegal for a gay couple to have a child, but we won't protect those kids legally the same way children of a straight couple or single parent are protected. That makes sense, punish children because you disagree with their parents. The other is that studies(I really wish I could link, but if you google the topic you can find what i'm talking about) show that factors like a 2 parent household(kids are a lot of work) quality of education, and financial stability are the main factors that can predict a kids future. When you look at this issue arguing it will hurt the children is easily reputed by research.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:39 p.m.

    @andyjaggy & nellie83;

    The 10th amendment, the "state's rights" amendment, prohibits states from violating Federal Laws (prohibited to them); the US Constitution is the ultimate Federal law and the 14th amendment of the ultimate US law is violated by amendment 3 to Utah's constitution. States do not get to violate the rights of (any) US citizens. The majority does not get to violate the rights of (any) US citizens.

    "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, NOR PROHIBITED BY IT to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

    @arand;

    Separate is not equal. There are also many religions that support same-sex marriage.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:37 p.m.

    @ O'really

    Marriage is a right, according to the SCOTUS many times over. However, it is still an option, not a requirement. Just like owning a firearm is a right. However, we are not all required to own a gun.

    I see it is your opinion that being gay should disqualify someone from marriage. The question is WHY? They are consenting adults, why can't same-sex couples participate in marriage and receive its benefits too? Neither you, or any lawyer, has put together a reasonable answer to that question that will hold up in court. Your religious beliefs don't matter because we are not a theocracy. Also, "The children" argument is destined to fail because divorce is still legal, and infertile and elderly couples are allowed to marry all the time. Plus it is legal, and common, to have children outside of wedlock. So with that in mind, why shouldn't SSM be legal?

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:36 p.m.

    Well, the state is going to lose for sure if this is the best they got. They've already used the "marriage is for procreation" argument which was readily shot down by the lower courts. Repackaging that message isn't going to make a difference. The 14th Amendment is at issue here. If gay marriage is legalized, it will be done under the 14th Amendment, so why isn't the state arguing points that deal directly with the 14th amendment rather than these emotional pleas? Part of the problem is that big money is involved. Most people may not know that the 14th amendment was written to give freed black slaves equal rights, but almost immediately after its passage, corporations filed lawsuits asking for equal protection under the 14th Amendment. Since that time, the federal courts, including the Supreme Court have set hundreds of precedents that "corporations are people" with rights of citizens under the 14th amendment. This expansion of the 14th amendment was the doorway to allow for gay marriage. Utah won't argue to redefine the 14th amendment because that would ruin the power of big corporate money over politics.

  • Steve C. Warren WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:29 p.m.

    Does anyone know what percentage of marriages produce children? Notice, my question is not what percentage of "married people" have children. For example, if a man and woman are married and have a child together, and the man is previously divorced twice with no children and the woman was divorced once with no children, the percentage for them would be 40 percent.

    My hunch is that about 25-30 percent of all marriages produce children.

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:23 p.m.

    @Ann Amberly "Marriage is *the* social recognition of the interdependence of the two halves of humanity, not only in reproduction but in all important affairs of humanity. As such, same-sex unions not only do not fulfill the purpose of marriage, they negate that purpose."

    I'm trying to find that definition or requirement in any state civil marriage law. Do you have a civil law statute citation or court case to support your claim? How are opposite sex couples and their unions negated, when a same-sex couple marries. How does this purported "negation" specifically manifest itself or how can it be measured or documented as evidence?

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:14 p.m.

    @ LovelyDeseret

    Your religious freedoms are completely untouched. Our freedom FROM your religion on the other hand.....

    Children are not a requirement to get married. You can be married and choose not to have children, or you can be unmarried and have many children....

    That wasn't hard to counter at all, and I'm not even a lawyer.

  • Coach Biff Lehi, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:13 p.m.

    So, Ranch, Lane, do you deny that people have overcome same sex attraction or are you claiming that no such thing exists. You will need to be careful here because there are a lot of us that have personal knowledge of such. Spin away, if you must.

  • merich39 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:10 p.m.

    The state argues that traditional marriage households are the optimal environment for raising children and that the state has an interest in the welfare of children. But yet, the state allows many (most) other child rearing households. It seems the state is much less interested in promoting the optimal environment bests interests of children via traditional marriage than they are in preventing same-sex marriage.

    In addition, the state allows same-sex couples to raise children. The state merely forbids the marriage of those same-sex couples who are raising children. I fail to see how a child is better off with unmarried same-sex parents than with married same-sex parents. The state certainly strongly encourages opposite-sex couples to marry for the benefit of children and society. We should be encouraging same-sex couples to marry for the same reasons.

  • desert Potsdam, 00
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:08 p.m.

    (child-centered meaning and purpose)

    E N D L E S S items would add up a list to what nature is providing the child with, such as starting with breast feeding for the immune system and perhaps ending with the role playing model of a mother and a father.
    The LGBT community could not even come close to what they would be lacking in comparison to what nature has to offer to children with a father and a mother provided.

    It does not help to read the child-centered institution of marriage as a failure by posting divorce or childless families.

    With child-centered is meant, that two natural parents have more medical and psychological pre-determined properties to sustain the huge demands of child growth and development.

    Nothing a gay or lesbian partner would ever be able just to imagine.
    The intolerance to LGBT does not happen, it comes by the design of mother nature.
    People do like their neigbors, but nature cannot create a substitute for its own design.

    This here is all about misreading science. Sorry.

  • equal protection Cedar, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 5:06 p.m.

    @RedWings "No genetic proof of homosexuality has been found. The entire human genome has been mapped without finding the "gay gene". This myth still gets propogated to the point that even otherwise intelligent judges parrot is as fact."

    No genetic proof of HETERO-sexuality has been found either. So once you solve your own mystery science question first, then you may have basis to judge and condemn homosexuality.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:57 p.m.

    @ BlackDiamond

    Not everyone believes the same way you do. Believe it or not, many people don't even believe in your god, and that is perfectly fine. You are free to live your life any way you see fit, however you are not free to force your standards upon anyone else.

  • arand Huntsville, u
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:58 p.m.

    Look, this is so simple it is amazing people can’t see it on both sides. Just give Gay couples the same rights as non-Gay couples just don’t call it marriage. This will keep religion out of it. I don’t think there is a religious teaching on the planet that recognizes marriage with other than a man and a woman and to do so, steps on the rights of those who have those religious beliefs whether right or wrong. This is why we have separation of church and state. What this judge did was try and blend the two and it is against the Constitution plain and simple.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:54 p.m.

    @Lane Myer

    .005% changed huh? That means that if only one person changed that 20,000 students participated in the study (roughly the enitre population of the school at a given time during that era). Please cite your source.

  • Ann Amberly Greenbelt, MD
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:40 p.m.

    The State is right to defend its definition of marriage. But to base their case on "best for the children" means they will be stalemated in court due to conflicting empirical evidence produced by various research teams on child outcomes in same-sex and hetero-sex households.

    The state of Utah should have based its legal argument on something far deeper: that marriage is the unique social expression of commitment between the two halves of humanity. Marriage is *the* social recognition of the interdependence of the two halves of humanity, not only in reproduction but in all important affairs of humanity. As such, same-sex unions not only do not fulfill the purpose of marriage, they negate that purpose.

    But Utah male politicians do not see that equality between the sexes is the deeper purpose of marriage, and so they will never be able to craft the legal argument that would bypass the stalemate on child outcomes. That is very sad; they are setting themselves up to lose. They owed the cause of marriage a better defense than this.

  • nellie83 Pleasant Grove, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:39 p.m.

    cont. from previous comment....
    However, the US Government gave states the power to define marriage, so it is a states law decided on the state and it's people. Whether the law is recent or old matters not, it was put into place by the state and it's people. If it were the US Government's decision on defining marriage, all states would allow same sex marriages, and not all do. Maybe it's just a matter of time, but what's the since in voting on any state matter if the US Government can just come in and overturn it.
    So from my previous comment and this one I can see both sides.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:35 p.m.

    Absolutely its best that children have a mother and a father. So why before gay marriage became an issue, didn't the powers that be in Utah work to ensure that children who adopted are adopted by mothers and fathers? There is nothing in Utah law now and never was to prevent children from being adopted into other arrangements. All along there are children who could have had mothers and fathers, who were adopted into other arrangements.

    Instead the powers that be here go out of their way to make life difficult for gay people by denying them benefits of marriage, (taxes, visitation, inheritance etc.) without offering a suitable substitute such as domestic partnership. Denying marriage to gay people does nothing to help traditional marriage. Who ever believes this is like a sheep, reflexively believing what they hear without thinking the issue out for themselves.

  • nellie83 Pleasant Grove, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:34 p.m.

    I am a Mormon woman who can understand both view points. A family has so many different definitions that seriously the argument to only allow a man, woman and children to be the sole-definition of said family is Ludacris (single parent families, grandparents raising children, aunts and uncles raising nieces and nephews and the list goes on.) Also as a Mormon we believe the only marriage that matters in the eyes of God is the celestial marriage, between a man and woman is in the temple. The eternal family unit is the man, woman and their children whether they are their blood offspring or adopted.
    Same sex couples who already have children are going to continue to cohabitate in that manner whether a piece of paper saying they are married or not is produced. There's no law that would take their children away from them nor should there be. This is more detrimental to the child than just allowing their same sex parents to be married. Cont...

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:27 p.m.

    @ RedWings

    "No genetic proof of homosexuality has been found."

    Which gene is the hetero gene?

    "Thousands and thousands have overcome same-sex attraction..."

    Google tells me the U.S. population is about 316 million. LGBTs generally make up 5% of the population, which comes to about 15.8 million people. Even if your statement had any basis in fact, you would have a LONG way to go.

    BTW, gay conversion therapy is a religious crock, is outlawed in a few states already, and has been rejected by mainstream healthcare professionals since at least 2000.

    Thank goodness scientists are more concerned about discovering what's true than protecting what they'd prefer to believe. If they weren't, we'd still believe homosexuality is evil and same-sex attraction can be "cured."

  • TheTrueVoice West Richland, WA
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:27 p.m.

    @jcobabe: "Many of those voicing protests about the State brief seem of the mistaken expectation that the State's defense of traditional marriage should be introducing us to some new territory."

    That's because Schaerr et al are essentially using the same flawed straw man arguments that have already been thrown out in various courts. They are virtually the same arguments that resulted in the Shelby decision. How can any reasonable person expect this to end differently?

    Sorry, Utah, but this will be like leading lambs to a slaughter. I am stunned that the state is going to allow such tripe to be again presented as their main defense... they have done NOTHING to improve their legal footing!

    "Tradition" is not a basis for legal argumentation. You will simply lose this one.

    "Procreation" is not a factor in allowing two individuals to marry.

    "It's for the children"... please. The Appeal to Emotion or 'argumentum ad passiones' is a logical fallacy, not a basis for defense.

  • Liddle Bruda Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:25 p.m.

    TO Heavyhitter:

    The fees are capped to $500k for round 1. They know full well that this will go all the way to SCOTUS and the state, when all is said and done, will have spent well over $2mil. Get your head out of your own misunderstanding of the situation

  • andyjaggy American Fork, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:23 p.m.

    It's just the same arguments we have been hearing forever, I really don't think we will win this one. I AGREE that a traditional family is the best environment to raise a child, but I'm sorry the argument doesn't hold up in any logical way and most likely won't hold up in court either.

    In my opinion we only have two ways to argue it, on moral grounds, and on the ground of state's rights. Since we most likely can't win a moral argument in a court, since we don't all subscribe to the same religion or morals, nor should we force those on others anyway. Therefore the only logical path forward is to argue state's rights. We probably need to start accepting the fact that gay marriage is here to stay. Stop living in fear and focus on strengthening your own family and your own children, that's what you should be doing anyway.

  • LeslieDF Alameda, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:16 p.m.

    @Azazael
    "I like your point that these benefits and obligations apply regardless of whether a married couple has children. It answers so many comments that seek to undermine a man-woman definition of marriage by citing childless marriages."

    Pointing out a fact neither undermines, nor elevates a position. That my aunt and uncle never had children did not undermine my parents' marriage. Nor does mine. That married friends of my parents were childless did not perplex or confuse me, or them.

    And love, commitment - the fulfillment - was obtained in giving by the adults to each other and to us, children, not in withhold or restricting love through marriage as some form of ownership, achievement or prize.

    The state never guarantees marriage results in better adults - it can hope. The state does help ensure success or failure for children - their interests and the state's interests. A state policy of promoting marriage only for couples who might accidentally have children is preposterous. That certainly undermines "traditional" marriage. Is that license reward or pardon, or punishment?

    Have yet to see any difference in outcome for children that depended on the gender of their parents (biological, adoptive, step, foster, or even stand-in).

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 4:00 p.m.

    @LovelyDeseret
    ["Redefining marriage as a genderless, adult-centric institution would fundamentally change Utah's child-centered meaning and purpose of marriage"

    Beautiful argument. No one can counter that]

    I'd counter it by pointing out that Utah doesn't have a child-centered meaning and purpose of marriage. There's no requirement that a couple have children, there's no requirement that parents of children get married. There's nothing keeping the infertile or elderly from getting married. There are even some marriages Utah only allows if they're infertile (that between cousins). There's nothing even stopping single people from adopting (so the notion of children needing to have two parents of opposite genders is already disagreed with in Utah law elsewhere).

  • Jeffsfla Glendale, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:57 p.m.

    These lawyers are digging themselves in deeper and deeper into a hole. The fact that they are showing preference to one citizen over another is just wrong. The US Constitution clearly provides equal rights for all citizens. You know those pesky words of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? I am not going to waste time on the issues of due process and equal protection. We have many great posters who have addressed these issues. I want to go right to these lawyers own words regarding our prized religious freedoms...

    "state's interests in accommodating religious freedom and preserving social harmony in the state"

    My church and faith accepts and marries gays and lesbians and their families. These amendments clearly violate my faith. No where in the 1st Amendment is the word "majority" tied to religious freedom. Please I hope the lawyers for these couples are going to draw that distiction so we might...just might one day have social harmony...and not just for the majority.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:55 p.m.

    Offering a marriage certificate to two women raising children won't change the result of the choice these two women have made- that of hurting the child by virtue of their relationship. It's impossible for a child to grow up in a home with two mommies to not at some point feel jypped and then long for a dad. That is unless the women lie to the child telling them that they don't need a dad and two moms is just as good. Flat out lie! Hopefully the state will wise up and not allow singles or homosexuals to adopt. To stand firm with the traditional definition of marriage will hopefully discourage MORE homosexuals from bringing children into their homes to raise. It was a mistake for the state to ever allow it to begin with. I hope that law is repealed along with the effort to maintain amendment 3.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:48 p.m.

    Id marriage is a right then I suppose that all those singles out there who never got a marriage proposal could sue others for not marrying them. Marriage is not a right no matter who says it is. It comes to some but not others. If you decide to live the gay lifestyle, select a partner of the same gender, it should then make you ineliglble for marriage. Unless you then change your ways and choose to marry someone of the opposite gender. It's so simple. Why can't people understand that.

    If gays choose to live the gay lifestyle it will come with some consequences. If they choose to adopt a child, it will result in that child not having one parent they should and deserve to have. It also will result in a confused and emotionally hurting child at some point once they realize they will NEVER have a mother or father. Consequences of the choices adults are making!

  • Baccus Leesburg, VA
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:34 p.m.

    @ RedWings

    Redwings: "Further revelation - when it was asked for - led to this position being changed."

    Baccus: May be is time to start asking about this issue.

    RedWings: "Thousands and thousands have overcome same-sex attraction and live happy lives. One of those inconvenient facts the LGBT try to hide....."

    Baccus: Where are they? I am LGBT and LDS, I went through electric shocks, and other "reparative" treatments to cure me of my homosexuality (I was Chaste and Devoted )

    I know many, many people living double lives. Also, the LDS stop promoting reparative therapy a while back. The LDS Church has been honest enough to understand that homosexuality is a "natural trait"

    The problem is NOT homosexuality. The problem is one of self and societal acceptance.

    God our Heavenly father has no problem with his LGBT children. He blesses our lives everyday as much as he blesses the lives of his heterosexual children.

    There are thousands and thousands of LGBT and LDS, and many from all religions who can testify
    that God has nothing against us. The limited ones are only a group of individuals who "project and attribute to God" their own faults.

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:30 p.m.

    Red Wings: Thousands and thousands have overcome same-sex attraction and live happy lives. One of those inconvenient facts the LGBT try to hide.....

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

    BYU tried aversion therapy to change students (who volunteered, btw) to overcome SSA in the 60's, and 70's and 80's. If you want to look up their results, it turns out that .005% changed. And the few of the thousands treated who changed actually became unattracted to anyone, rather than becoming heterosexual. These are members who wanted to change so bad that they allowed BYU to send electric shocks to their genitals to change their attractions. Some took medicine that would make them vomit when they became aroused. All in an effort to try and make them opposite attracted.

    After years of failures, BYU stopped their program and related to the Brethern that SSA could not be changed by this method. These students had fasted, prayed, talked to their bishops, and truely tried to become what they felt they were supposed to be.

    When they couldn't change, depression set in along with self-loathing. More than a few suicide attempts were recorded.

    Where are those thousands of changed people you were talking about?

  • Coolio SLC, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:24 p.m.

    Society does not need two same sex parents raising the children of the future. The very laws of nature created two sexes, male and female, joined together, and only then, can life be created. No need to challenge the very laws of nature for selfish reasons. Give the children a chance.

  • keepamericafree salt lake, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:15 p.m.

    The law does not deny anyone a fundamental right "to marry". All people are afforded the exact same opportunities to marry. Marriage is defined as a union between one man and one woman. This is not about equal rights it is a fight to redefine marriage.
    If we allow marriage to be redefined then where does it stop? If a Father wants to marry his own daughter and they are both consenting adults, What is to stop them from being allowed to marry as well? If we are redefining marriage then why not allow polygamy? civilized society is built upon the laws given to us by God, like it or not. If we start disregarding the Laws of morality that have stood since the beginning of time then where will it stop? If we bend the rules for some it will undoubtedly lead to the changing of other rules as well. If society has no rules and laws of morality to stand on than it will not stand at all.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:15 p.m.

    @LovelyDeseret;

    "I can see why Schaerr is such a successful lawyer. Traditional marriage allows for "accommodating religion freedom".
    How do you counter that? With the argument that religions shouldn't have freedom?"

    ---

    And what about our religious freedom? That doesn't matter to you, does it. (Hypocrisy at it's finest).

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:05 p.m.

    Lovely Deseret,

    Do the saints in Massachusetts have religious freedom? Are they able to worship as they see fit or has gay marriage changed their beliefs?

    Please tell me how you can want to treat the children of gay couples as less than other children. Their parents will have to pay more taxes than other parents - just because they must file as single.
    To be able to put these children on some health insurance plans, the children need to be step children or adopted by the working parent. Some children will be without health insurance without their gay parents marrying.
    To receive a fraction of the benefits and privileges that a $40 marriage license affords, these gay couples must pay thousands of dollars to a lawyer to draw up papers that gives them a little assurance that their children are under the guardianship of the other parent, inheritance rights, and medical rights to their spouses. All those monies are kept from going to their children, their childrens college funds etc.

    Do you really care about these children or is it more important that your beliefs are enshrined in law?

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 3:02 p.m.

    @Salamankero in Utah

    You said and I quote "you might want to be careful about your "majority" comments. Our society is becoming more accepting and less bigoted". I suggest you had better be careful about saying such things as "religion is little more than a fantasy". You may take comfort in what a few dubious polls say - remember that people often vote differently than how they answer a poll question.

    Moreover, if you think you can remove God and faith from our society it is you that is living the fantasy.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:58 p.m.

    @ JJ1094 ... the two issues have nearly identical political/religious histories. And will have the same outcome. Probably on the same time line, meaning the policy change will follow the rest of the nation by about a quarter century. Unless we make the mistake of canonizing political statements as doctrine. Then it will take ten years longer.

    Nonreligious question though: since when did "the ideal" become "the standard" for law. I might be able to find data that support my ideal would be that everyone attend a church three hours every Sunday, one parent would be dedicated full-time to his/her child, that cigarettes didn't exist, that people in the "10-item-or-less" line obeyed the rule. But we don't have laws for these ideals.

  • jdesto Utah, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:58 p.m.

    I find the people who support what the state is doing very interesting, and I think you should stay in your little bubble of a world. Life changes and progresses, when Utah wanted to be a state the church gave up their polygamous lifestyle, then they allowed blacks into the church, long after they were given their freedom from slavery.

    I find it sad that I know people who will not let their children play with others because they are not of the same religion. God did not create us to be like this, you want to look at the history of it, your religion is an infant compared to others, but you feel that you are the standard of tradition.

    So get on your high horse and ride out of here, change has come, embrace it or stick your head in the sand, because at the end of the day we all get to face our maker, it is then when we will all be judged on how we lived our lives, I choose to treat EVERYONE the same, even those who stand on the side of the state.

  • Fender Bender Saint George, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:55 p.m.

    Utah legislators don't want children to be raised in non-traditional families which undermine the LDS stance on homosexuality. The possibility of gays and lesbians actually turning out to be good parents is terrifying to State legislators, most of whom are LDS. This concern also fuels anti same-sex marriage laws in other areas where politicians, and the people who vote them into office, are opposed to same-sex marriage due to religious beliefs.

    The government is clearly taking sides in a theological debate here, and oddly enough this government intrusion into religion is promoted by many of the same people who buy into conspiracy theories about how government is the biggest threat to religious freedom.

    This issue isn't about protecting children, it's about keeping them indoctrinated, and if that means more kids are raised in single-parent households, or as wards of the state, then so be it, just as long as they're not raised by gays.

  • RedWings CLEARFIELD, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:53 p.m.

    @ Owen:

    Read Genesis. God joined Adam and Eve, and thereby ordained marriage as between one man and one woman. This is not a negotiable thing. The church in the 19th century believed that blacks could not hold the Priesthood. Further revelation - when it was asked for - led to this position being changed.

    Science changes its position all the time without being questioned or attacked. I remember when Pluto was a planet, and dinosaurs were lizards.

    "Both hurt whole classes of people because of genetics."

    No genetic proof of homosexuality has been found. The entire human genome has been mapped without finding the "gay gene". This myth still gets propogated to the point that even otherwise intelligent judges parrot is as fact. I guess it proves that if you say something enough times people will believe it.

    Thousands and thousands have overcome same-sex attraction and live happy lives. One of those inconvenient facts the LGBT try to hide.....

  • Chilidog Somewhere, IL
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:52 p.m.

    I am not a lawyer, but even I can see the glaring holes in the states arguments.

    I truly think they want to lose.

  • LovelyDeseret Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:36 p.m.

    I can see why Schaerr is such a successful lawyer. Traditional marriage allows for "accommodating religion freedom".
    How do you counter that? With the argument that religions shouldn't have freedom?

    "Redefining marriage as a genderless, adult-centric institution would fundamentally change Utah's child-centered meaning and purpose of marriage"

    Beautiful argument. No one can counter that, they will have to ignore it or accept it.

  • desert Potsdam, 00
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:22 p.m.

    Ranch said : I don't give a rip what your god says and I'll fight you tooth and nail if you try to force me to adhere to your god's will. We are not a theocracy and I will defend the freedom to choose who I am with and who I choose to marry.

    1. This here is not about what god is saying, but what legislature will in the near future

    2. to be forced to adhere to god's will is against the true and living God, contradiction

    3- we are not a theocracy, but if we would you could still count on your voice

    4. freedom ... to choose who to marry, no and yes, if it is a legal ceremony you cannot

    Your speech is one of upset rather than logic to the facts.
    And before you have to fight to the teeth, you may choose to vote.

  • Bored to the point of THIS! Ogden, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 2:04 p.m.

    "man and woman"?

    Why hasn't the State gone after the polygamy ruling? They seem very disinterested in it.

    Curious to the motives here?

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:58 p.m.

    Here is the problem that I see with the State's argument that marriage is to help raise children and to give the best environment to children possible, ie, a mother and a father:

    Gays are not forbidden from having or raising children without marriage right now. Many gays (especially in Utah) are raising children. Over 200,000 children are in gay households in the USA. If we keep gays from marrying, it is NOT keeping them from having children or adopting children. This will continue whether or not we allow gays to marry.

    The people that are being harmed by keeping marriage between opposite sexes are the children of gay couples! They are the ones not being given the most stable environment possible - just because there are those in the state that want to either protect a word or feel that their beliefs are more important than those children. It might be optimal to have both parents, but it is not realistic. These facts will not change just because we banned gay marriage.

    Can anyone dispute this counter argument? Why are we treating those children so poorly? Why don't we care about those families? Are we that selfish and stubborn?

  • JJ1094 Saratoga, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:55 p.m.

    @ OWEN

    seriously???...

    I don't think I have ever encountered such a spin from truth as your list. Sad part is that several people actually thought you had some real facts.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:44 p.m.

    Personally, I think the trivializing of marriage is coming from those who insist that civil unions are just fine and that they don't need marriage.

    @Snapdragon
    "I should be free to say I believe the gay lifestyle is wrong and never intended by God"

    Of course you can (though technically the DN moderates comments and since it's their page there's no free speech right that anything typed here actually is allowed). Here's the thing though...

    "I believe the gay lifestyle is wrong and never intended by God, and that the judgement of God foretold by ancient prophets will come upon us if the traditional family breaks down. I have the right to say that. It is not hate"

    others have the right to disagree with those claims.

  • Stephen Daedalus Arvada, CO
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:42 p.m.

    Utah's premise is that recognition of marriages of same-sex couples will have an adverse impact on a range of desired outcomes, such as increased births, more stable families, more and longer-lasting marriages.

    Regardless of truth/falsity of this premise, for the purpose of Shelby's summary judgment analysis he assumed all that is true, as will the 10th Cir.

    So the question on appeal is whether Shelby erred, as a matter of law, in finding that Amend 3's exclusion of a single class of couples (same-sex ones) from the benefits of secular marriage is not rationally related to Utah achieving those desired outcomes (or conversely, avoiding declines in them), when Utah's law recognizes the marriages of all other classes of couples that have the identical (if not worse) adverse impact on Utah's desired outcomes. These classes include infertile couples, second/third marriages (track record of divorce), couples where one or more are known physical or emotional abusers, have untreated mental illness, or can't hold down steady employment. Binding precedent says this is not rational.

    Utah's brief barely skims the surface as to why Shelby might be wrong in this regard.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:38 p.m.

    @Richness: As a child growing up, the highlight of my week was the visit to or from my grandparents. While we often felt our parents tended to take us for granted, we never doubted our grandparents were there just to love and dote on me and my sister. Every couple, whether straight or gay, has parents. If they have a child, that child gets grandparents! If only the churches would quit trying to get families to ostracize their gay children, more children of gay parents would have access to loving grandparents. Plus, marriage creates more grandparents for children!

    Your thinking, mired in traditional sex roles of mothers and fathers, is quaint. My wife and I share duties and talents without regard for whether they're masculine or feminine. Computers, mechanics, cooking, home repair, cleaning, sewing, art, music, fishing and sports are not restricted to one gender or another.

    The choice for Utah is not whether or not gay/lesbian couples should have children. Those families already exist and will continue to form. The question is whether those children should have the security that marriage provides them, their parents and their home.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:35 p.m.

    @1978;

    You do not have the right to vote on the civil rights of anyone.

    @All of you claiming "god says".

    I don't give a rip what your god says and I'll fight you tooth and nail if you try to force me to adhere to your god's will. We are not a theocracy and I will defend the freedom to choose who I am with and who I choose to marry.

  • Gibster San Antonio, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:33 p.m.

    Mr AG.

    This is all you got?

    I have to revise my previous statements, your not only going to lose huge, Your gonna get creamed.

  • Values Voter LONG BEACH, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:26 p.m.

    @ Snapdragon

    you wrote: "I should be free to say I believe the gay lifestyle is wrong and never intended by God. . . "

    and

    "I have the right to say that. It is not hate, it is acting according to my beliefs."

    You DO have the right to say that. You just did. And I would vigorously defend your right to say those things. But you do NOT have a right to be free from criticism when you say those things. This is where you and many others get confused.

  • Rufio Saratoga, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:23 p.m.

    Marriage is such a wonderful thing, and all should be able to enjoy it. Unfortunately, a small group wish to "un-define" marriage. This is not about everyone having equal protections - everyone already has the opportunity to marry someone of the opposite sex. That very small group chooses instead to change the definition to be "between same-sex individuals", which most people do not accept as the definition.

    Utah citizens have spoken clearly - Marriage is defined as between one man and one woman. All are welcome to participate.

  • Coach Biff Lehi, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:22 p.m.

    I am opposed to gay "marriage". However, the biggest threat to traditional marriage, according to Matt Walsh, is divorce. I happen to concur. Maybe we should focus there.

  • jcobabe Provo, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 1:07 p.m.

    Many of those voicing protests about the State brief seem of the mistaken expectation that the State's defense of traditional marriage should be introducing us to some new territory. As if the promotion of traditional ideas ought to be presented with a Hollywood-style theatrical flair, neon lights, celebrity, and glittery hyperbole. Sorry to disappoint such hopes, but common sense would indicate that the traditional marriage position has no such appeal. The "same old" ideas that characterize tradition ARE traditional, by definition. The burden of proof would seem to lie with those who propose to transform marriage into some spiffy new playtoy. Let opponents of tradition show how and why their ideas are any improvement over time-proven ideals and universal values. Civil law was instrumented with just such a basis.

  • Snapdragon Midlothian, VA
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:58 p.m.

    I know gay people and I love them. I also believe that people should live their lives according to their own will.

    This includes my choices. I should be free to say I believe the gay lifestyle is wrong and never intended by God, and that the judgement of God foretold by ancient prophets will come upon us if the traditional family breaks down. I have the right to say that. It is not hate, it is acting according to my beliefs. I will defend this.

    Thank you Utah for taking the time to spent the 2 million to protect my rights too. It is the right thing to do.

  • Azazael Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:56 p.m.

    @LeslieDF
    Thank you for your thoughtful direct reply. I had not considered the state’s role in the obligations of marriage.

    If the Supreme Court has determined that marriage is a basic human right, all the more reason for legislators to be clear about what constitutes a marriage. Or, as @Salamankero notes, for the judiciary to determine the constitutionality of those definitions, thereby defining marriage.

    Marriage, in this debate, is a legal status granted benefits, obligations and responsibilities by the state. As such, the state has an interest in defining marriage. The arguments presented by Schaerr demonstrate the state’s interest in defining marriage as between a man and a woman for the benefit of society.

    I like your point that these benefits and obligations apply regardless of whether a married couple has children. It answers so many comments that seek to undermine a man-woman definition of marriage by citing childless marriages.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:27 p.m.

    @ RedWing: "To compare the two is completely disingenuous." ??? This comment is the definition of disingenuous.

    I can list a least dozens of direct parallels. Here are a few ...
    Both referred to as doctrine by many leaders.
    Both said to get cred from Genesis.
    Both claimed to have impact on life before or after this.
    Both were/are PR flashpoints for the LDS church.
    Both hurt missionary efforts.
    Both hurt whole classes of people because of genetics.
    Both reflected the political battles of their time.
    Both restricted rights to a class of people.
    Both vehemently defended on religious grounds.
    Both counter-intuitive to rational, pure charity.
    Those who question the doctrines, vilified.
    Both overturned ... etc., etc.

  • Richness Herriman, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:28 p.m.

    It's understandable why many are flustered for the sake of preserving rights. However, LGBTs can have relationships without the government defining it as marriage. Who is the gov't, trying to take over our personal lives? Our nation was For The People, meaning the government should have no say in our relationships. There's nothing wrong with Utah securing the traditional family unit. Their main motive is to Protect the Children. Of course, not everyone can have children. That's a given. The reason our government ever supported the family was for the chance for couples to bear and raise children. Yes, people adopt and create families. Some will never bear children. Fact is, Lgbts will Never be able to have children as it's Not Natural, but Heterosexual couples have a Chance. LGBT aren't as equipped without both parental roles in the home. Children need a father and a mother. We hear: Wake up, Utah! Your morals are ancient and have no place in society. Let's see how well this adaption of same-sex parenting effects future generations. The traditional family unit has been proven to be the most ideal setting for children.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:20 p.m.

    State brief: "A society can have but one understanding of marriage: It is either a uniquely man-woman institution, or it is not."

    Faulty premise, faulty conclusion. There can obviously be multiple understandings of marriage. There are many historic family structures and many purposes of marriage. Procreation is one, but so is the enhancement of social well-being by supporting stable, loving relationships. Marriage in the past has been used to transfer wealth and power between families and to effect international diplomacy.

    The state's case boils down to the "optimality" argument-- that the sole purpose of marriage is to facilitate procreation and that kids do best with a married mother and father. This has been repeatedly debunked in this forum over the past two months. Too bad the state's attorneys don't read the DesNews comment threads. Here, again, for their benefit:

    1) Utah marriage law itself rebuts the premise that the ONLY policy purpose of marriage is to facilitate reproduction by requiring certain couples to be infertile in order to marry.
    2) Children of gay couples are excluded from the benefits of having married parents.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:18 p.m.

    "Many of us don't believe in your god, and we don't go to your church."

    And many of us don't share your beliefs either. This may come as a shock but we are entitled to vote and participate in the process just like you.

    I do not support denying anyone employment, housing or the right to live with who they want. Some of us believe, however, that it is in the best interest of society and children to defend traditional marriage.

    Legitimate peer reviewed studies back up our point of view even if they are not politically correct.

  • LeslieDF Alameda, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 12:05 p.m.

    @ Azazael
    YOU SAY: "Marriage is not a basic human right."
    Supreme Court disagrees at least 14 times in cases since 1888.

    YOU SAY: "Marriage, in this context, is a legal status that is granted certain benefits by the state."
    The legal status - marriage - is granted to couples as benefits, but more importantly, obligations and responsibilities - two things you do not talk about.

    The state regulates divorce, child support, custody, marriage of people already with children, inheritance, property distribution and taxation. Lots of obligation and responsibilities there.

    YOU SAY: "This argument shows the state's interest in defining marriage for the benefit of society."

    There are lots of benefits for married couples AND for society, whether any couple has children or remain childless. The State has an interest in both benefits to individuals and to the state. It also has obligations and responsibilities expected of married couples and by the state to children and their parents - like schools.

    Interests of the state, benefits AND obligations, apply to individuals, regardless of gender, or if a married couple has children.

    Marriage is a basic human right (with lots of obligations) to society, if it is to remain a society for everyone.

  • Salamankero in Utah Farmington, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    @keepamericafree

    “Marriage has always been between a man and a woman since Adam and eve.”

    Except for that pesky revelation about polygamy. Oh and all those ancient times when it wasn’t… but I guess if you treat the bible as “what really happened in history”, then I guess you’re right. It really is a pity that so little of it actually aligns with reality.

    “if we allow the loud voices of a few to persuade us to change what is right and make it wrong”

    Let’s go back to slavery! Child labor! Women treated worse than property!!!

    All of those movements started with a minority. Each struggled greatly to gain enough support to change the minds of those less… enlightened… to see how unfair and barbaric they were.

  • Salamankero in Utah Farmington, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:48 a.m.

    @Meckofahess

    You said, "Same-sex marriage related laws would result in social chaos and I believe would back fire in mirad ways that the gay community doesn't like to talk about."

    Would you care to explain a few of the "mirad" ways that laws to protect simple rights of citizens (such has the ability to decide on medical treatment of a loved one) would "back fire"? I would also love some references to studies that support your beliefs.

    Also.. you might want to be careful about your "majority" comments. Our society is becoming more accepting and less bigoted. Personally I can only hope this is happening because people are starting to wake up to the fact that religion is little more than a fantasy, but again... that is just me. Read for yourself about the changes in Utah's views on same sex marriage. Just takes a simple Google search, "utah support gay marriage poll".

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:48 a.m.

    I was frankly stunned that Utah made the claim that preventing"religious and social strife" was a reason for outlawing Gays marriage.

    You will find the same argument in cases supporting segregation in the South in the 60s. I suspect the lawyers responding to this brief will point to this as proof that the law was based on "animus" against Gays, not what's best for children.

  • keepamericafree salt lake, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:48 a.m.

    The law does not deny anyone a fundamental right "to marry". All people are afforded the exact same opportunities to marry. Marriage is defined as a union between one man and one woman. This is not about equal rights, this is about a few people trying to redefine marriage.
    If we allow marriage to be redefined then where does it stop? If a Father wants to marry his own daughter and they are both consenting adults, What is to stop them from being allowed to marry as well? If we are redefining marriage then why not allow polygamy? civilized society is built upon the laws given to us by God, like it or not. If we start disregarding the Laws of morality that have stood since the beginning of time then where will it stop? If we bend the rules for some it will undoubtedly lead to the changing of other rules as well. If society has no rules and laws of morality to stand on than it will not stand at all.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:42 a.m.

    @Prodicus: If, as you say, my wife and my reasons for getting married are "irrelevant," than perhaps so are everyone's. (You should look at your laws. Utah Code Title 30 Chapter 1 sets forth the law of marriage. Nowhere in there is any stated "reason" or "justification" or "societal benefit.")

    There being no reason for marrying, there can be no reason for not marrying. The State can still set forth requirements regarding age, competence, consent, consanguinity, and unencumberedness, as well as filing fees.

    This case comes down to the restrictions set forth on the parties who are prohibited from consenting to be married to each other, and whether those are Constitutionally justifiable.

    If you believe in Traditional Marriage, you should look up Common Law Marriage. From preChristian Rome until 1563 for Catholics and 1753 for Anglicans, marriage "...was accomplished by consent of the parties to live together. No forms were required, and no ceremony was necessary." (-- from an online legal dictionary. Links prohibited by DN. Just google the text.)

    So much for any religious underpinnings since the dawn of time.

  • RedWings CLEARFIELD, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:35 a.m.

    @ MoreMan: Blacks and the priesthood is a totally different thing than same-sex marriage. To compare the two is completely disingenuous.

    Marriage is defined in scripture. Read Genesis. There is no altering of God's Law for political expediency or to comply with increasingly disturbing societal changes. Blacks holding the priesthood was never scriptural. It was a policy that was consistent with 19th century society. As true civil rights advanced, the Prophet appealed to God and was given an answer.

    Members who struggle with same-sex arttraction have full fellowship in the Church as long as the live the Law of Chastity. But what happens when someone in that situation engages in homosexual - or any other sexual - behavior outside of marriage? Excommunication.

    SSA and homosexuality are two different things. Acting out sexually is always a choice. Celibacy is not fatal.....

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:33 a.m.

    To "cocosweet" you never finish raising children. Since your MOTHER is 76, that means that she has children, and is still giving them advice and raising them. Granted you don't live with her, but she is still a parent and is raising children.

    To "get her done" I hate to tell you, but the idea of gay marriage being ok is an ancient Roman idea. Those supporting it are not even up to this millenium.

    To "Noodlekaboodle" you are wrong. Studies out there show that children raised by same sex partners end up sexual messes because of risky behavior and experimentation. Overall not very healthy for the emotional development of children.

    To the rest of you who support SSM. Where does it end? If a man and 3 women want to be legally married, will you give them the same support? What about if 2 men and 3 women want to be leagally married, will you support that? How can you limit marriage if you define marriage by love?

  • UTSU Logan, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:33 a.m.

    @BlackDiamond
    "God commanded that marriage is between a man and a woman...."

    ----
    Both believers and non-believers can get marriage license from government. Even though marriage has religious significance to some people, it does not to others, it is a matter of law, not a matter of religion.

    And even if talking about religious freedom, according to Wall Street Journal, there are already more then half young evangelical Christians supporting SSM, the number is even higher among mainline protestants, and WSJ is hardly a liberal media. So for those believers who support marriage equality, how about their religious freedom?

    Basically, Schaerr would argue it is OK to reject one religious view and to codify another religious view into Utah's constitution? And he believes that is not against 1st amendment establish clause? How can state of Utah hire such a lawyer with big bucks?

  • keepamericafree salt lake, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:31 a.m.

    Marriage has always been between a man and a woman since Adam and eve. If we start redefining things, where will it end? We have rules and laws to avoid chaos and that is exactly where this country is heading if we allow the loud voices of a few to persuade us to change what is right and make it wrong! I will stand up for traditional marriage!

  • Salamankero in Utah Farmington, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:30 a.m.

    @Prodicus

    It might be helpful to understand how our government works before you go around touting how the 10th circuit’s decision against Amendment 3 is “legal” or not. One of the primary purposes of the judiciary branch is to weight the legality of state and federal laws against the constitution. Even if a majority of a state (or nation) wants law “x”, if that law is found to be in contradiction to the constitution then that law is deemed unconstitutional and illegal. They did not overstep their bounds, they did not break any laws, they did exactly what our constitution and laws demand. Our constitution is not based on the will of a “god”, it is based on equal human rights.

    I am however exceedingly curious as to how allowing gay marriage impacts our society in a negative way and more specifically how it impacts your family. Since history is full of examples of societies accepting and denouncing same sex attraction with varying results to the longevity of those societies then I would love to hear your well researched opinion on how allowing same sex marriages would harm our nation.

  • Tiago Seattle, WA
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:21 a.m.

    @SoCalChris
    I'm not sure if I understand your question about single parents, but I want to address it. Currently a single parent has custody and parental rights to his or her child. Gay parents are asking for the same rights.
    Currently there are thousands of families in Utah with children in the home and a loving couple of the same sex at the head. The state of Utah only allows custody and parental rights to one of those parents. The other parent, even though he or she may have raised the child from infancy, cannot legally adopt the child and has no parental rights or legal protections.
    The state of Utah wants to make sure gay parents are always, at best, single parents with a live-in boyfriend or girlfriend. How is this better for children or society than having two legal parents, even if they happen to be of the same sex?

  • Jsmith5151 Washington, DC
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:20 a.m.

    Many of us don't believe in your god, and we don't go to your church. The constitution's first amendment states that we're not subject to governance by either. Don't like gay marriage? Marry someone (or a few) of the opposite sex. Fine for you to abide by your faith's'myths, but you won't be imposing them on the rest of us by force of law. As I'm sure you'd appreciate the same courtesy by any other religious majority.

  • Clarissa Layton, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:14 a.m.

    My husband and I were not able to have children, nevertheless, there was a chance that I might have been able to get pregnant, but it didn't work. We could have adopted, but for many reasons, we felt it would not be for the best. I thing I was proud of was the example of happiness and was able to let my students see. I also am an example to my nieces and nephews. Getting married when you are older is also setting a great example for children. Also, Sarah did get pregnant at 90!

  • MoreMan San Diego, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:12 a.m.

    Because when their tax exempt status is challenged by their own words (Article 12) I'll bet you see continuing revelation fast. The church already allows openly gay members, who tithe, and are celebate. If they want to be afforded the same blessings and live for time and all eternity in a committed monogamous/celebate (albeit ICKY in your eyes) marriage, the church is going to have to bend. The issue about blacks and the priesthood is but one great example.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:08 a.m.

    @Prodicus
    "Utah's Amendment 3 isn't "sharia law" or "theocracy," it's how a supermajority of citizens in our republic expressed their right to participate in determining what kind of community they will live in."

    Sharia law and theocracy are often backed up by a supermajority of citizens in their nations expressing their right to participate in determining what kind of community they will live in.

    @Meckofahess
    "They attempt to paint a picture that all is well in states that have caved to their one-sided demands"

    Looks alright to me. Maybe that's why support for it rises most dramatically in states that get it, they quickly see it's no big deal.

  • Azazael Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:07 a.m.

    Marriage is not a basic human right. Marriage, in this context, is a legal status that is granted certain benefits by the state. This argument shows the state's interest in defining marriage for the benefit of society.

    The issue is whether the federal courts can trump the voter's of a state in their right to decide what definition of marriage they want to promote.

    To those asserting that nothing new is argued, thus the same result should be expected, notice that the SCOTUS granted a stay on performing new marriages where the other courts did not. The SCOTUS did not agree with the decisions of the lower courts.

  • BlackDiamond Provo, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:06 a.m.

    I'm proud of what is Utah is standing for. God commanded that marriage is between a man and a woman. Whether they are able to have children or not. We don't have people who have a disability break the law just because they are different. If someone was born blind there is nothing we can't do about it. Same thing goes to those who can't have children. God created them that way. Stop gay marriage, and who cares if its the new century. God laws never change. Just stop it.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:04 a.m.

    "What about those thousand of Utah children being raised by same sex parents? Are they not entitled to the same legal protections?"

    What about the thousands of single parents? Shouldn't they be entitled to the same legal protections? I've known individuals who have lived with a parent basically their entire life. Why shouldn't they be entitled to the same legal protections?

    It's ok to have standards. It's perfectly rational to say that traditional marriage is the normal and healthy model that society wants to foster and put its stamp of approval upon. There is nothing in the Constitution that mandates recognition of homosexuality as equal to normal sexuality -- the sexuality that is the reason we are all here.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Feb. 4, 2014 11:02 a.m.

    @ Schnee


    " Well, there's nothing new here. It looks like an appeal that will get thrown out so I'd like to thank Governor Herbert and Attorney General Reyes for using our tax dollars to help potentially get same-sex marriage nationally."

    Schnee, I was thinking exactly the same thing.

    It brings me back to Albert Einstein and his definition of insanity:

    " Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    Another point: I find ironic that Utah defends so-called "traditional marriage" so vehemently, forgetting, that for Utah to be accepted as a State in the Union and for the LDS church to keep its property., Utah had to give up polygamy, at least officially. In reality there are two predominant traditional type of marriages in Utah.

  • riverofsun St.George, Utah
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:58 a.m.

    The best color for the sky is blue.
    However, life and our universe are diverse in all forms. Diverse does not equate bad.
    Sadly, many individuals fear the unknown.
    Time to join the 21st century and experience good people everywhere. One may realize one has been silly and sheltered after learning how wonderful "diversity" in our world can be.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:54 a.m.

    Bravo Mr. Shaerrer and Team!

    Your defense resonates loud and clear with time honored truths of morality and common sense. Same-sex marriage related laws would result in social chaos and I believe would back fire in mirad ways that the gay community doesn't like to talk about. They attempt to paint a picture that all is well in states that have caved to their one-sided demands - the reality is all is not well!

    The comments by so many gay contributors here demonstrates a fear reaction as they see that the state of Utah and the majority of the people are simply not willing to accept their one-sided arguments when they fail to recognize the concerns, needs or rights of the many who stand on the other side of this historic debate.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:51 a.m.

    What is the definition of insanity?

  • kiddsport Fairview, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:50 a.m.

    The SSM argument is just the latest attack on the Constitution by stretching and inserting meanings not originally intended by the framers. The 14th Amendment allows equal treatment under the law because a homosexual male has the same ability to marry within the opposite gender as does a heterosexual. The same constraints against marriage to a minor child apply equally to both, as do the constraints against marriage to a horse, or a dolphin, or a fence post. it even applies to constraints against marriage to multiple partners. Why do people refuse to see that parallel? I imagine Lot asked the same questions.
    I also imagine the attorneys are also not limited to presenting only a single argument in defending States Rights.

  • Prodicus Provo, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    Quaker, your motivations in getting married and whether you intended to have an impact on society or not is irrelevant; you have such an impact, a large impact that society takes a legitimate interest in. Other marriages affect yours materially every day- every moment you deal with any other people or with their works. To pretend otherwise is to pretend there is no such thing as society and that every man is an island.

    That some marriages fail is not an excuse for further eroding the institution by other absurd innovations.

    Utah's Amendment 3 isn't "sharia law" or "theocracy," it's how a supermajority of citizens in our republic expressed their right to participate in determining what kind of community they will live in. Overthrowing the will of the people to protect imagined "rights" not found anywhere in the Constitution is tyrannical. The faked imaginary document Shelby claims gives him justification to institute despotic rule-by-judiciary has nothing to do with the Constitution we approved in the statehood process nor with any Amendment passed since that time.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:47 a.m.

    @MoreMan
    I've honestly never understood this concern. For example, i'm not LDS. So if a family member or friend is getting married I can't go watch the ceremony. The LDS church is allowed to do this under the law. When I got married even if I wanted to they wouldn't let me(a man) marry my wife(a woman) in the temple, even though we were allowed to marry by law. The mormons are already allowed to exclude anyone they want from marrying in their temples. Why would gay marriage be different?

  • LeslieDF Alameda, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:45 a.m.

    I thought states had unique and logical reasons for marriage laws. Not so, Utah.

    UTAH: "Redefining marriage as genderless..." ?
    Individuals in different-sex and same-sex couples have a gender. Being married to someone with the same or different gender does not make a marriage, "genderless."

    UTAH: "Redefining marriage as...adult-centric" ?
    Utah grants a license to two adults, not to adults and children. Not to any couple because they promise to have children. And same-sex couples have and raise children.

    UTAH: "child-centered meaning and purpose of marriage" ?
    Let's hope no one thinks they are getting a license that permits reproduction by the state.

    UTAH: "Because man-woman unions are unique in their ability to produce children, maintaining the man-woman definition reinforces the child-centric view of marriage." ?!

    One man married to one woman is not the only ("unique") way to "produce children." Nor does it guarantee ("reinforce") a child-centered view of marriage. Otherwise the state would not be permitting divorce to married couples with children, nor allow unmarried people to adopt, nor step-parents.

    Utah is destine to lose the case, if it rests on this type of reasoning.

  • GZE SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:43 a.m.

    Iconoclast, you win a cookie. That is exactly what is happening.

  • Willem Los Angeles, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:39 a.m.

    Anything to denigrated gay and lesbian Americans. Is this a way to run our country?

  • Values Voter LONG BEACH, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:38 a.m.

    The state of Utah could, if it wanted to, set out to identify ALL situations and couplings where an "optimal child-rearing environment" is unlikely to exist, and then forbid --in law-- marriage to any of those groups and in any of those situations. -- If optimal child-rearing were the actual goal.

    The state could, if it wanted to, reference "vast amounts of social science research" to name and then demonstrate the undesirability of certain groups as potential parents. In this brief, it ignores ALL other groups and situations -- (which are much more common) -- and zeroes in on ONE single group of potential parents --(which are much more rare)-- and bars them alone from marriage.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:38 a.m.

    I've always maintained that the arguments against same sex marriage but Wow! Did this one ever fall short. Wasn't Matlock available?

  • Eliot Genola, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:38 a.m.

    It is very interesting to watch history repeat itself. Each time the participants in the drama believe that the outcome will be different. We are more enlightened then they were. Where others have tried and failed, we will achieve the impossible and build a society centered on self.

  • Jsmith5151 Washington, DC
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:12 a.m.

    If Utah cares so much about children and sees heterosexual marriage’s existence as only to support them, why does it permit divorce for married parents? Why doesn't it require that unmarried parents wed? Why doesn't it allow gay couples with children to wed? Why doesn't it restrict infertile couples and those who don't desire children from marriage? Why doesn't it require childless couples to divorce? Why doesn't it require couples whose children have reached age 18 to divorce? Etc., etc., etc. Since it doesn't, in ALL these cases, its arguments in opposition to gay marriage are weak at best, and specious at worst. Good luck with all that. And welcome to 2014 where equality prevails over the very short real reason it’s against marriage equality, i.e., "We hate gays."

  • Jsmith5151 Washington, DC
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    If Utah cares so much about children and sees heterosexual marriage’s existence as only to support them, why does it permit divorce for married parents? Why doesn't it require that unmarried parents wed? Why doesn't it allow gay couples with children to wed? Why doesn't it restrict infertile couples and those who don't desire children from marriage? Why doesn't it require childless couples to divorce? Why doesn't it require couples whose children have reached age 18 to divorce? Etc., etc., etc. Since it doesn't, in ALL these cases, its arguments in opposition to gay marriage are weak at best, and specious at worst. Good luck with all that. And welcome to 2014 where equality prevails over the very short reason it’s really against marriage equality, i.e., "We hate gays."

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Feb. 4, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    @Prodicus: It's you who's missing the point.

    You can't define my marriage. We live in a free society, not under Sharia Law or Puritan Dominion. Only my wife and I can define our marriage, just as any couple can. I didn't marry my opposite-sex wife to be part of a "broader societal pattern." I married her because I love her and wanted to live with her and share our lives together. We both knew, when we married, that we weren't going to have children, partly for medical reasons. We also knew that getting married was the only way to build a unified life together, financially, legally, and responsibly.

    I can't imagine any reason to deny this to any other committed adult, consenting, unrelated, unencumbered pair, be they religious, nondenominational, interdenominational, mixed-race, or same sex. Our marriage is unaffected by other marriages. We've outlasted the dozens of failed marriages accumulated by a handful of prominent Conservatives.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:59 a.m.

    From the brief: One of the State's arguments is that it has no obligation to justify its exclusion of same-sex couples from the definition of marriage. Its only obligation is to show that its definition advances its stated interests. Wow. That's like saying, "Slavery advances our interests in furthering the state's economy, so we don't have to justify the fact that it deprives some humans of their liberty."

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:46 a.m.

    Well, there's nothing new here. It looks like an appeal that will get thrown out so I'd like to thank Governor Herbert and Attorney General Reyes for using our tax dollars to help potentially get same-sex marriage nationally.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:43 a.m.

    No where in the Constitution of the United States of America is anyone given the right to define word meanings. The First Amendment freedom of religion implies that an individual may choose for himself but may not force others to accept his definition. I take this to also mean that government cannot impose its definition on individuals.

    Government can regulate its benefits or punishment according to its definition so long as such regulations do not conflict with other parts of the Constitution. Government cannot use a definition for its actions that discriminates against people in a prohibited manner.

    I believe that the best place to rear children is in a one man, one woman family, economically able to provide a reasonable environment. Beyond that arrangement, I would prefer a government home where the children are very well cared for and even become proud of their special status. I don't think that exists at present, but it could.

    I would place polygamy, Gay and other abnormal families to be the worst place to rear children.

  • MoreMan San Diego, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:26 a.m.

    Thanks Utah... setting the stage for a national definition of marriage. When the first "Temple worthy" gay Mormon shows up at the Pearly Gates and demands that the church honor article 12 in the articles of faith "12.We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law." That's when the real fun begins.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:24 a.m.

    Iconoclast wrote: "They are sending a message to the faithful that they tried, at least, to defend their principles."

    This was my thought as well. But doing it on the taxpayers' dollar makes Utah look like a theocracy.

  • Prodicus Provo, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:22 a.m.

    People who say "what about childless marriages?" are missing the point.

    When a man and a woman marry, even if they do not or cannot have children of their own and even if they don't adopt, their marriage and commitment is part of a broader social pattern. No man is an island; this isn't just about them and their kids. Their commitment reinforces the institution of marriage in a way that makes others more likely to form stable families where children are reared with a mother and a father.

    Every homosexual "marriage," along with every other cohabitative sexual relation which is not a committed marriage between a man and a woman, weakens the cultural institution of marriage and societal expectations on the subject, and thus makes it less likely that others will rear children in stable homes with a mother and a father.

  • Reflectere Utah, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:20 a.m.

    From a societal perspective (not a religious one) there are many, many, many marriages where children are not involved. Also, the bearing of children is declining in popularity across the board. I find this a hard pressed argument in a court of law based on current societal positions.

    If this is the bases of their argument, it can be (unfortunately) easily combated as has been proven in past briefs to appellate courts (such as California, DOMA, etc.). They need to build as their bases of argument the fact that the Supreme Court, in DOMA's majority opinion, made precedence that the federal government does not have authority to rule on state marriage definitions and that Shelby stepped beyond his authority in overturning a state constitutional amendment defining marriage between a man and a woman. They need to reference to prior appellate decisions regarding this and they need to build upon both the common law and constitutional law which binds that authority to the states.

    From there they can then further fortify their position with truths concerning the traditional family.

  • a bit of reality Shawnee Mission, KS
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:19 a.m.

    I'd add the following two points:

    1- Most major national associations of doctors and psychologists say they support same-sex marriage. They do so *because* doing so is good for children. Families lead by same-sex couples do in fact raise children, and it would be better for the children if those households if their parents were allowed to marry. So when a real family with real kids asks for equal protection under the law, it just is ironic and unconvincing to argue that they shouldn't be granted those rights because of the abstract fear that doing so will make marriage an adult-centered institution rather than a child-centered onee.

    2- The "religious freedom" argument seems exactly backwards. Many churches and religions have the conviction that same-sex couples should be allowed to get married. How does it promote religious freedom to make it illegal for a Unitarian Universalist minister to marry two members of her church that want to marry?

  • Adalaide OREM, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    I find it demeaning that they're using children to define marriage. So because my husband and I have none, what does that mean? Is our marriage not as valid as that of people who do have children? Should we ban people who are parents from getting divorced while their children are still minors, because what's best for them is *so obviously* having both opposite gender parents in the home.

    If we can't force two people to stay married and one man or one woman is capable of raising a child, or of a woman is allowed (gasp) to become a single parent in this state, doesn't it follow that having two parents, even if they are of the same gender, would be better than having one if they are in a loving and committed relationship? One of my daughter's friends in elementary school had gay parents. The little girl didn't have glowing eyes, tentacles... she was just ordinary with ordinary little girl concerns. People need to get the hell over themselves. It doesn't hurt me to let others be happy, but it wounds to be told my childless marriage is worth less.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    Of course it is.

    It's a no brainer.

  • desert Potsdam, 00
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:15 a.m.

    CALL IT

    a beautiful blue sky or "out ot the blue",
    name it marriage as the legal support for being in love for life or "or unite anything that is loving",
    address society with reasons for child centered safety or "raise children by the state even anybody just available" ?

    Misunderstanding : children need parents, not parents need children !
    (if you have none, that is no reason to call your marriage off)

    Well I guess this is not about reasons for marriage but reasons for wishful thinking.

    No matter what they would define as being good to children, it is only to be understood by the mind and orientation of those who want to understand what looks good to them.

    The results are in the social accepted time frame of our generation, there is no truth or untruth, it is all what they want to hear, being in charge of legal levels as of the people that follow their way of perception.

    They will continue to understand what they want to understand.
    It is not religious dominance, but forceful philosophy on others.
    They will not give it up, until all of the children have lost confidence in any adults.

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:13 a.m.

    "Utah has the constitutional authority to define marriage...."

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

    That statement is at the crux of this issue, all motivations, logic, statistics, etc., aside. Does Utah, and other states, indeed have that authority and others similar to it?

    The fact that this issue continues to be debated so long after the country was formed tells me that we're in for this kind of debate for a long, long time.

    By the way, I'm in favor of retaining the traditional definition of marriage. But, I hate to admit I suspect the advance of homosexual "marriage" is only part of an ongoing weakening and corruption of marriage and part of a general decline of our civilization.

  • heavyhitter Lehi, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:12 a.m.

    For all those griping about a "$2MM pricetag" get your heads out of the SSM crowd talking points. The fees are capped at under $500,000, if you happened to pay any attention to the selection process six weeks ago. And if you think the state's lawyer is doing this for financial gain, you should have also read the memo to his firm why he was taking this anre withdrawing from the firm. He believes this is an important case for society and to defend his religious beliefs from erosion by judges like Shelby who clearly overstepped. I'm hopeful Shelby's ruling will be overturned, but regardless, standing up for morality and Judeo-Christian values that benefit society will go on.

  • Chris A Salt Lake , UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:08 a.m.

    Marriage is between a man and a woman. Period.

    Thank you to the state of Utah for defending these values.

  • TheTrueVoice West Richland, WA
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    I find it rather unbelievable that Utah is actually going to try to use these same old exhausted canards as a legal construct against equal rights for all citizens. These are essentially the identical constructs used in the original Shelby Ruling. Does the state think these tired, specious arguments are going magically gain legal traction?

    Several million Utah tax dollars... wasted.

    I am sadden that this money could not have been put toward actual good use, like say... feeding Utah school children, instead of shaming them and throwing their lunch away in front of them.

    Priorities, Utah. Please find them.

  • Outside-View Federal Way, WA
    Feb. 4, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    In the book, Mere Christiantity, C S Lewis begins by describing the importance to society that the definition of words like Christianity or marriage actually convey accurate information to the reader about what the term means. To go from a fact based definition to one that generalizes a feeling regarding the definition is to destroy the meaning of the original work. I was struck that this is exactly what is happening in this legal batter to refine what Marriage means.

    Gay and Lesbians relationships are different from society's centuries old definition of marriage. To provide a different term to define that relationship (civil union)seems perfectly fine for a State and its citizens to acknowlege.

    "A society can have but one understanding of marriage: It is either a uniquely man-woman institution, or it is not. Because man-woman unions are unique in their ability to produce children, maintaining the man-woman definition reinforces the child-centric view of marriage."

  • GZE SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:56 a.m.

    The Utah Attorney General's office did a national search for outside counsel and he is being paid millions and millions of dollars.

    This is the best he could come up with? I hope the taxpayers can get their money back when the Court laughs him out of the building.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:56 a.m.

    If they are so worried about children why are single people allowed to adopt in Utah? Sociological studies have shown time after time that children do best in a two parent home, whether those parents are gay or straight. So if we really care about the children.....

  • azamatbagatov Lehi, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:53 a.m.

    If we really want to "save marriage", get rid of no-fault divorces.

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:52 a.m.

    WOW. That's the State's argument? We're going to lose in a big way. Seems a first year law student could have prepared a stronger argument than this. Truth, honesty, and equality are all working against the State so we throw out the "children" defense? Where are Utah's leader's on this issue? People who know and respect the U.S. constitution? We're throwing millions of dollars away and we're going to defend it being say it's all about the "children".

  • DougW659 Buffalo Grove, IL
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:48 a.m.

    This is nonsense. It doesn't protect anyone's "religious freedoms" to prevent others from marrying who they want. If a law was being proposed saying YOU MUST marry someone of the same sex, you'd have a point. It is NOT your religious freedom to in ANY WAY interfere with someone else's life. Until the religious right gets that through their heads, they will continue to lose members and influence. You live YOUR life and let others live as they wish!

  • get her done Bountiful, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:50 a.m.

    Talk about beating a dead horse. Utah needs to get into the present century.

  • Salamankero in Utah Farmington, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:38 a.m.

    "Millions of Utahns who accept these traditions understand marriage and sexuality as gifts from God, designed not principally for the gratification of adults, but to provide an optimal setting for bearing and raising children"

    I really wonder if the attorney was able to say that with a straight face.

    This is the same argument again (at least what the reporter is bothering to report. It is time to drop the religious bigotry and advance our society. I'm sorry, but just because "everyone else does it this way" does not make it right. Most of the religions mentioned do not allow contraceptives. Others have questionable views on non-believers. More people need to read Christopher Hitchens.

  • Iconoclast Lethbridge, AB
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:36 a.m.

    D.O.A

    With this as their ($2 million) argument, it is obvious that Utah doesn't even expect to win.

    They are sending a message to the faithful that they tried, at least, to defend their principles.

    Regards,
    Iconoclast

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:31 a.m.

    There are no new arguments being made - these arguments have failed before and there is no reason to believe they will not continue to fail.

  • PLM Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:22 a.m.

    Well said. Thank you for defending marriage as was instituted by a loving omniscient God.

  • cocosweet Sandy, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:15 a.m.

    Marriage as child-centric? I suppose that makes my marriage a sham since we didn't have children? What about all those couples who can't have children? Perhaps we should only allow those who are fertile to marry? Since my mother re-married at age 76 her marriage too is a sham? I find the reasoning specious at best and illogically at worst.

  • AllBlack San Diego, CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:05 a.m.

    The Gay lobby answers these arguments with

    a)what about the elderly who can't have children, will they be banned from marriage too? obviously not because it isn't about the children.

    b) 14 amendment is about equal treatment. So if you treat person a one way, by granting him a marriage licence then you must treat person b the same way by granting him that same marriage licence irrespective of religion, race, ethnic background or sexual orientation.

    I'm no a fan of SSM but I can't yet see how we will win the argument in the courts when more and more judges are siding with the gay lobby by accepting both of the above arguments.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:03 a.m.

    Nope, that isn't going to work.
    Nothing new, therefore same judgment.

  • Berkeley reader Berkeley , CA
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:02 a.m.

    The state's arguments fail in a spectacular way. What about those thousand of Utah children being raised by same sex parents? Are they not entitled to the same legal protections? If marriage is all about child rearing, how can the state discriminate against same sex families and yet allow elderly heterosexual couples to marry? Utah is leading the way to our having same sex marriage legalized nationwide. What a wonderful irony!

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    Feb. 4, 2014 8:02 a.m.

    It might have been nice if the article included a link to the filing. If anyone is interested, you can find a copy by googling "13-4178-Utah-Opening-Brief".

    It's basically just a rehash of the "tradition" and "religious basis" arguments. In other words, nothing new or compelling. Tons of rationalizations with questionable "facts" that are easily refuted. Especially of note is how Utah's laws are uniformly cast "in the best interests of the children." Considering Utah's stats and various laws on the books that completely ignore the welfare of children, they might as well have teed it up and handed a driver to the plaintiff's attorneys.

    I'm guessing Schaerr doesn't want to win at the 10th Circuit, so he can bill for an appeal to SCOTUS. If it comes to that, though, Utah should find someone with more intellectual rigor.

  • 1.96 Standard Deviations OREM, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:53 a.m.

    "A society can have but one understanding of marriage: It is either a uniquely man-woman institution, or it is not. Because man-woman unions are unique in their ability to produce children, maintaining the man-woman definition reinforces the child-centric view of marriage."

    I like that! Here's to gender and marriage complementarity!

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 4, 2014 7:49 a.m.

    Great to see people sticking up for good morals and families, especially innocent children!

    Keep the good work.

    Pope Francis and Prophet Monson and I all agree on this issue. Nice to know I stand with them!