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Comments about ‘Plaintiffs in Utah gay marriage case will ask Supreme Court to hear state's appeal’

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Published: Thursday, Aug. 7 2014 1:15 p.m. MDT

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Web Geek
Lehi, UT

I think both sides of the debate can agree on this one thing: We need a nationwide ruling on gay marriage.

USU-Logan
Logan, UT

Utah asked the Supreme Court to answer a single question: "Whether the 14th Amendment prohibits a state from defining or recognizing marriage only as the legal union between a man and a woman."

===

NO Mr. AG, Amendment 3 did more than simply banning SSM, or "defining or recognizing marriage only as the legal union between a man and a woman", it excludes the possibility of civil union too. even if many Utahns now support civil union, Amendment 3 makes it impossible.

That fact alone is an invitation of striking down Amendment 3.

A Quaker
Brooklyn, NY

Well, I feel vindicated. I wrote a rather scathing comment the other day, which didn't make it into print, criticizing Utah's SCOTUS petition (lead attorney: Gene Schaerr). Reading the petition, I was struck with how singularly ineffective those recycled legal arguments have been thus far. I closed with, "those opposed to marriage equality better hope SCOTUS doesn't accept this petition. Any other states' would probably be better for your cause."

Apparently, the Plaintiffs' attorneys must have read the brief and come to the same conclusion.

mufasta
American Fork, UT

Well said Web Geek.

illuminated
St George, UT

"NO Mr. AG, Amendment 3 did more than simply banning SSM, or "defining or recognizing marriage only as the legal union between a man and a woman", it excludes the possibility of civil union too. even if many Utahns now support civil union, Amendment 3 makes it impossible.

That fact alone is an invitation of striking down Amendment 3."

So if it removed the clause excluding civil unions, you would agree with Amendment 3?

I think most people are assuming that the SC will rule in favor of the SSM side and strike down state amendments banning gay marriage. They say Utah will, ironically, be the force to allow SSM across the entire country.

I actually think this will go the other direction. I think Utah will be responsible for upholding State's Rights across the country. Other than the flubbed first ObamaCare ruling, the SC has been ruling very Conservatively since then, including the recent strike down of the ObamaCare benefits from the federal marketplace and the Hobby Lobby ruling.

If I were a SSM supporter, I would be absolutely terrified that this is going to the SC. A poor strategy on their part for letting it get this far.

USU-Logan
Logan, UT

@illuminated
"So if it removed the clause excluding civil unions, you would agree with Amendment 3?"

the point is, because there is already such a clause, Amendment 3 is definitely unconstitutional.
if you want to have another constitution amendment without the clause excluding civil unions, that is a different issue.

MtnDewer
Salt Lake City, UT

illuminated,

There is nothing to be afraid of. If it isn't struck down now, by the time this new generation is grown (yes, even in Utah), our children will vote to abolish this bad amendment to our state Constitution. It is just a matter of time.

They are not being taught to fear and hate those who are different, but to accept. They know too many people (some of whom are related to them) who are not scary or to be feared. They will change this if we, their parents are too chicken.

illuminated
St George, UT

@MtnDewer

"If it isn't struck down now, by the time this new generation is grown, our children will vote to abolish this bad amendment to our state Constitution. It is just a matter of time...They will change this if we, their parents are too chicken."

Even you don't sound too confident with the SC ruling on this. Good sign. If they do in fact side with the 10th Amendment, it will mean you will need a 2/3 vote from the states to add an amendment allowing an override of the 10th on marriage law. All I can say is...good luck with that. ;)

"They are not being taught to fear and hate those who are different, but to accept."

Do you really think people still buy this straw-man? It's not about hate, man, it's about states having the right to keep an institution sacred. It's about Federalism, the concept that the best blood of the 18th century died for. We're not a Democracy, each person does not get to decide what is best. We are a Representative Republic with state laws and leaders that are voted upon by, yes, the -majority-.

Jeff Harris
Edmonds, WA

How exactly does preventing gay parents who are raising a family from marrying support families?

MtnDewer
Salt Lake City, UT

illuminated: First off, you are reading the 10th amendment wrong. It states right in there that the states or the people can have the powers not delegated to the federal government as long as they obey the constitution: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it (that is the Constitution, btw) to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."

That means that the states must not pass any law regarding these powers that are unconstitutional.

Secondly, the state definitely does not have the right to keep an institution "sacred." That is putting some religious beliefs above others or those who do not have any religious beliefs. We can show that is unconstitutional right in Amendment #1, right?

If I remember my Civil War history, states rights were defeated by the Union. (19th Century blood was spilt for that victory.)

The Constitution is still the supreme law of the land. Our State Constitution also states that fact. Now, we just need to learn how we can enjoy some rights and privileges that we will not allow other Americans of enjoying-- and still say we are following the constitution.

FatherOfFour
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

Utah had laws preventing interracial marriage from 1852-1963. When that was overturned, I have to wonder if Utah fought this hard then too.

wrz
Phoenix, AZ

Web Geek
"I think both sides of the debate can agree on this one thing: We need a nationwide ruling on gay marriage."

We need a national ruling in order to simply the application of the Privileges and Immunities Clause of Article IV of the US Constitution.

And, if SCOTUS rules in favor of SSM, we need to understand completely how the court came to that conclusion... not just citation of the 14th Amendment. Because if the 14th Amendment supports SSM it must also support all other marriage arrangements that can be conjured by mankind... such as polygamy, siblings and other close relatives, and even children.

And don't tell me that children can't marry. History is replete with such marriages. But, if you have trouble with children marrying then just strike it from the list of marriages in the above paragraph.

Confused
Sandy, UT

MtnDewer,
You that misunderstands the 10th admendment....

Civil marriage laws are enactments authorizing the grant of special state benefits for certain kinds of unions. In other words, they give to people in qualifying relationships what the Framers called “privileges and immunities”—an 18th century legal phrase that refers to benefits bestowed by government on some people to the exclusion of others.

American governments traditionally have conceded the “privileges and immunities” of civil marriage only to a social union complying with certain exacting requirements. With some variations, state laws traditionally require that the union be (1) of a man and a woman, (2) who undergo certain procedures in advance, (3) obtain a valid license, (4) have consented, (5) are above a certain age, (6) are not married to anyone else, (7) are not too closely related to each other, and (8) meet certain other requirements of ceremony and/or cohabitation.

States traditionally have excluded from special benefits all other groupings—including, but not limited to, same-sex marriages, polygamous marriages, polyandric marriages, other plural clusters, designated intra-family unions (e.g., brother/sister and uncle/niece), and unions that are unlicensed or that otherwise fail to meet the states’ rules.

FatherOfFour
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

@wrz,

Depends on what you consider a child. Myself, I think of those in their 20's as children. In Utah you can legally get married at the age of 15. Young children cannot sign a legal contract, like those to buy a car, rent an apartment, or a contract with the state such as a marriage license. Those who opposed interracial marriage also warned against the same slippery slope. Personally I would have no problem with the legalization of polygamy. I have a neighbor who has three wives and many children. They are wonderful, nice, great people. Utah also recognizes some marriages that are not legal here but are in other states. You cannot marry your 1st cousin in Utah. But you can drive to Colorado, marry your 1st cousin there, and drive back. And Utah will still recognize you as legally married.

MtnDewer
Salt Lake City, UT

wrz,

Whenever we (as the government) place a restriction upon a citizen or group of citizens, we must have a reason for taking their freedom away.

It is easy to see why a blind man is restricted from getting a driver's license - it is easy to see the harm that can come from that.

It is also easy to see why a child under the age of 15 (that is Utah's law, btw) must have parental approval before they are allowed to marry. It is easy to see the harm that can fall upon the children of any close relative that may marry.

Now, explain to me the harm in allowing two lesbians to marry that are raising children. Who is harmed by allowing them to marry? Will keeping them from marrying cause less harm to them or more harm to this family? How is anyone else harmed?

How about two gay men who have lived together for 40 years? What harm can come from allowing these two men to marry? Who is harmed and how?

Thanks for your reply.

wrz
Phoenix, AZ

@FatherOfFour:
"Depends on what you consider a child. Myself, I think of those in their 20's as children."

Sometimes my spouse acts childish.

"Young children cannot sign a legal contract, like those to buy a car, rent an apartment, or a contract with the state such as a marriage license."

Change the law so they can sign a marriage license... with attestations by an adult.

"Personally I would have no problem with the legalization of polygamy."

I think alotta young bucks in town would cry foul if some rich dude gathered up all the young fair maidens and took them to wife.

"I have a neighbor who has three wives and many children."

That's a little selfish, isn't it?

@MtnDewer:

"It is easy to see the harm that can fall upon the children of any close relative that may marry."

What harm?

"...explain to me the harm in allowing two lesbians to marry that are raising children."

Explain why they need marriage? Children can be raised just fine without marriage. Even single people raise children.

"How about two gay men who have lived together for 40 years?"

Same question.

skrekk
Dane, WI

@illuminated
"If I were a SSM supporter, I would be absolutely terrified that this is going to the SC."

I suggest you read Scalia's irate dissent in Windsor to learn why he was so upset. The Windsor ruling is why your side is losing unanimously. Something like 34 courts have now ruled against you in the last years, and not a single one has ruled in your favor. Windsor is why.

Bob K
Davis, CA

FatherOfFour
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
"Utah had laws preventing interracial marriage from 1852-1963."

--If Utah had gotten rid of that law 10 years sooner, it would have been embarrassingly late for a non-slave State.

All this has to do with the Mormon dilemma: there are at least 100,000 Gays in mormon families in Utah, some too young to have realized it. All these people are raised in a marriage-centered culture.
--- Think of that 13 year old who is hating himself/herself because to follow his true nature means that he is supposed to spend not only this life, but all eternity, alone.

The lds have been willing to overlook the hurt to many hundreds of thousands of Americans, and to their own family members, because they believe God has not given them direction to do differently.

I think that the wave of acceptance of equality that has swept most of the country (and something like 80% of the young, is a sign that God says He was ready.

If Utah does not want to be thought of as equivalent to Mississippi and Alabama, it needs to move on this issue.

Baccus0902
Leesburg, VA

It seems that Utah is focused in making nationwide history.

If the Utah case goes to the SCOTUS and the SC rules in favor of equality and declares SSM legal in our country, what impact will this have around the world?

The LDS church have thousands of missionaries around the world who will be questioned about SSM and Utah. Obviously the missionaries will state the position of the church. But just having the conversation is a huge step for the whole world in the right direction.

Ranch
Here, UT

"The state contends that ruling deprives Utah voters of their right to define marriage as they overwhelmingly did in passing Amendment 3 a decade ago."

--- Utah voters did not have the right to pass any amendment that restricted the Civil Rights of LGBT American citizens; even to the extent of "defining marriage".

@illuminated;

"So if it removed the clause excluding civil unions, you would agree with Amendment 3? "

--- At this point, absolutely not!

1) You would have to VOTE to amend Amendment 3 anyway.
2) You weren't willing to allow civil unions when you passed A3, now there is no reason whatsoever why we should accept some lesser term now that you're losing the battle in the courts.
3) Separate is not equal

Frankly, I think you're assessment is wrong. SCOTUS knows which way the wind is blowing; additionally, refusal to allow SSM creates a condition where an LGBT couple is married, divorced, married, divorced, married, divorced again as they travel from state to state; something that DOES NOT happen to straight couples.

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