Saturday, July 17, 2010

Open Forum: The 10th Amendment and Gay Marriage

A federal judge has recently ruled that section three of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. The ruling is a major blow to those trying to keep federal benefits from married gay couples and will likely make its way before the Supreme Court shortly.

What is most interesting about the case is that the Judge found that not only did part of DOMA violate the equal protection clause of the constitution but that it also violated the tenth amendment! The tenth amendment has traditionally been used by conservatives to argue in favor of states rights.

How will the ruling on the 10th amendment play out in the future of proceedings on gay marriage? On one hand it can be argued that the federal government cannot dictate marriage if a state chooses to recognize gay marriage. However, couldn't it also be used to argue that if the Supreme Court or Congress decided to make marriage equality the law of the land that states could choose to abstain?

5 comments:

sensual massage said...

Well done Judge

yogurt said...

another example of hypocrisy from the right. not unlike Gore vs. Bush where the Supreme Court stepped in (stomped in?) and trumped the State Court. Suddenly right wingers were silent on the states rights argument.

Brian said...

I believe that the 10th Amendment, while about state's rights, specifically says that any rights not reserved by the federal government are given to the states. While states have set the specific conditions for marriage (age, accompanying rights, divorce, procedure, etc) perhaps Judge Walker found that the federal government has historically reserved the right to say WHO can get married? Thoughts from someone who hasn't read the full decision yet.

Keith said...

Thank you to all those who in their hearts and heads uphold the human right for two persons of any gender to love and to choose to unite, presumably for life.

While these human issues will suffer many tired eyes and tasteless insults, as well as countless paper cuts and smelly speeches...people will go on bonding, blending their strengths and weakness and building families.

Let us hope that our Declaration, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and so forth become popular in print, in public media and in general celebration and homage once again.

Angel Eliza 41 said...

Any Opinion of the Courts that help us are welcome in my book.

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