Gay marriage on trial
Posted on March 2, 2009
Filed Under Uncategorized
California’s long, tortuous war over same-sex marriage enters its next phase on Thursday, when the state Supreme Court hears oral arguments on three lawsuits challenging Proposition 8, the controversial constitutional amendment that bans gay marriage.
The easy way to think about these cases — and the way most non-lawyers are likely to do it — is to decide which side of the issue you’re on and root for that side to win. In other words, if you support marriage between same-sex couples, you’ll want the cases to succeed so that Proposition 8 will be overturned. If you believe men and women should only be allowed to marry each other, you’ll hope the lawsuits fail.
That’s fine. It’s outcome-based. But frankly, it has very little to do with what the Supreme Court is going to consider in the oral arguments.
Instead, the argument in the courtroom will be broader and more abstract. Who makes law in a democracy? What should we do when laws contradict one another? Who is the ultimate sovereign in the state of California — the people at the polls or their written Constitution or their appointed judges or their elected legislators? Can fundamental constitutional rights — inalienable rights — be withdrawn from one group but not another?
These are big, thorny questions with implications that go well beyond whether gays are allowed to marry. What follows is a cheater’s guide to the issues at hand.
Remind us: How did we get here?
The battle over same-sex marriage sometimes seems endless. Gay couples have been trying to get married in California since the late 1970s, and their opponents have been working just as hard since then to ensure that it does not happen.
Here are some highlights @ Gay marriage on trial
Los Angeles Times – CA,USA
Gay marriage fault lines in San Mateo County
Six States To Consider Same-Sex Marriage This Year S
California Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in Prop 8 Legal Challenge on March 5
America’s top civil rights groups and legal scholars agree: Invalidate Prop 8