SCOTUS declares 14th Amendment requires same sex marriage in 5-4 decision
The Supreme Court declared today that the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment requires that the definition of marriage be altered. The long (103 page) decision can be read here. Justice Kennedy joined the four liberals in the majority. Chief Justice Roberts wrote a dissenting opinion, joined in by Justices Scalia and Thomas. However, Justices Scalia and Thomas wrote their own dissents, and joined in a separate dissent written by Justice Alito, which the Chief Justice declined to join. All in all, a very complex outcome.
The Court majority summarizes:
The Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawful- ly licensed and performed out-of-State. Pp. 3–28.
If history is any guide, the winners of the case will not be gracious in victory, but will push for sweeping changes. Religious institutions that adhere to the traditional definition can expect to have their tax exempt status challenged, for starters. Govenrment contracts, student loans,everything will be challenged.
I have not read the entire decision but wonder if there are any grounds in it on which polygamy can be ruled anything other than a fundamental right. And after that, incest and every other marriage taboo. Oncemarriage becomes a matter of personal gratification, the doors seem wide open.
Update: Back in 2012, Lee Cary wrote here about the logic of President Obama's position on same sex marriage. An excerpt:
Since Progressives strive to continually progress, the question is: what's next on their marriage agenda?
We need look no farther than the document entitled "Beyond Same-Sex Marriage, A New Strategic Vision for All Our Families & Relationships, July 26, 2006," initially signed by over 300 LGBT activists, including Feldblum. It states:
To have our government define as 'legitimate families' only those households with couples in conjugal relationships does a tremendous disservice to the many other ways in which people actually construct their families, kinship networks, households, and relationships. For example, who among us seriously will argue that the following kinds of households are less socially, economically, and spiritually worthy?
[The ten "kinds of households" listed include "blended families" and "single parent households," plus:]
Committed, loving households in which there is more than one conjugal partner.
So, the same basic LGBT arguments in favor of same-sex marriage also seem to apply to multiple-partner relationships. Therefore, should "our government" also legitimize polygamous nuptials?
If Bill & Tom, or Jane & Judy, represent a relationship "morally equivalent" to a traditional, one-man-one-woman heterosexual marriage, then what can Progressives find fundamentally objectionable about a Bill, Tom, and Jane marriage? Or, one where Jane, Judy, Jim & Dan engage in a government-sanctioned marriage arrangement where an "interdependent framework helps sustain an individual's sense of self and stability"?
If, as Feldblum wrote, "the public must come to view homosexuality and heterosexuality as morally equivalent," then mustn't we, the public, eventually come to view homosexuality and heterosexuality existing within one "loving household," involving three or more persons, as "morally equivalent" to the traditional heterosexual relationship?If we accept Feldblum's argument -- as the president did -- the key question isnot "Why should we accept polygamous marriage?," but "Why shouldn't we?"
That's an absurd extrapolation, you say. Really?
For Progressives, the old Nike ad slogan applies: There is no finish line.
Presidential and state-level government approval of same-sex marriage is not the Progressives' finish line.