Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Well, the arguments have been argued, now we wait.

Today, the SCOTUS heard the arguments for and against Prop 8, the California Proposition to ban gay marriage.

Justice Alito made a comment today, during the session.

"Traditional marriage has been around for thousands of years. Same-sex marriage is very new. I think it was first adopted in The Netherlands in 2000. So there isn't a lot of data about its effect. And it may turn out to be a -- a good thing; it may turn out not to be a good thing, as the supporters of Proposition 8 apparently believe. 
"But you want us to step in and render a decision based on an assessment of the effects of this institution, which is newer than cell phones or the Internet? I mean we -- we are not -- we do not have the ability to see the future. On a question like that, of such fundamental importance, why should it not be left for the people, either acting through initiatives and referendums or through their elected public officials?"
I thought the argument in support of overturning the ban was about equal protection before the law.  The Supreme Court does not have as part of its jurisdiction the consideration of whether a thing is good or not, but whether it is in accordance with the Constitution and past SCOTUS rulings.

The ultimate ability to decide the goodness or badness of a thing is the people's basic right to alter the Constitution if they see that thing as bad. In this case, a consensus of the population of this country is rapidly reaching the point where a majority of us see marriage equality as a good thing.

So, no, we don't want you to rule based in its inherent goodness or badness, we want you to rule according to the inherent rights of all Americans based on the Constitution.

Period, end of story.


Oldfart said...

Hear, Hear!

Edward Haines said...

There are two acceptable decisions the SC can make. They can say that marriage is a state issue and individual states can each make their own determination (this is called Federalism by the Republicans who love Federalism in most situations but not in this one).

Better would be to state that all citizens are free to make personal contractual agreements throughout the nation. This, of course would open the door to multiple partner marriages (three or more). It would NOT open the door to interspecies or child marriage as contracts require one to be either an adult or an emancipated minor.

As far as DOMA goes, it would be an abomination for the SC not to find this unconstitutional.

Anonymous said...

I hope SCOTUS upholds DOMA. Marriage should be between one man and one woman. That's the way God intended things to be.

Robert Ahrens said...

Fine, so your church can keep on marrying like they always have. This doesn't stop the government from allowing marriage equality to the general public who DOES believe in such.

Doma isn't just about who CAN get married, it also has to do with equality before the law regarding benefits allowable under that law to people who are already married.

Go back to your church and stay bigoted, just leave the rest of us alone...

Anonymous said...

“Go back to your church and stay bigoted”

Nice try, Mister. I believe that gays should be allowed civil unions that give them the same legal federal rights and benefits as marriage. In that sense DOMA should be changed. I should have clarified that earlier. But marriage itself should remain between a man and a woman. Believing that does not make me a bigot. I believe in maintaining traditional values, while making allowances for groups like gays wherever possible and reasonable. If you believe that gays should be allowed to marry under federal law, that is fine with me. I respect your views. Please respect mine.

Robert Ahrens said...

So, here's the difference - Holy Matrimony is just that, a religious sacrament. Meant to be whatever the individual religious group determines it should be. As it should be.

So, why can't we call the civil version marriage? It isn't HOLY marriage, just a civil ceremony. With all of the benefits, rights, privileges etc., straight people have. Why a different name? Remember, the "Separate but Equal" thing died as unConstitutional regarding race years ago. Should be the same with sexual orientation.

So, yeah, if you want to stay bigoted, go ahead, just do it at church.

Anonymous said...

Fine. You liberals can just keep trying to destroy society while we conservatives will try to keep preserving it, and we'll see who wins. But I have to warn you, I have a heavy hitter on my side. His name is God. You have Karl Marx and he and his leftist ideas died out ages ago.

Robert Ahrens said...

Very funny. Churches in this country are losing members faster then they can raise them from birth; unbelievers are the fastest growing demographic in this country - and the world - and well under a third of the under 30 crowd claim your precious conservative values.

Your group is on the losing side of history as the current explosion of numbers supporting equality in marriage is showing, and demographics clearly shows that time is NOT on your side.

Progressive values are not Communist values, and your pathetic attempt to equate the two simply proves how out of touch with reality you are. Progressives merely feel that society should be about people pulling together and taking care of each other, and do NOT oppose capitalism, just the unbridled and unregulated practice of it.

The current political attempts by oligarchic forces who support unbridled capitalism are the ones who will destroy society as we know it, and would, if left to their own devices, make this into a modern version of a medieval distopia.

I will respect people who respect others. If your folks would quit trying to make others live under their bronze age values, we could respect your values more.

Anonymous said...

So we are minority? Big deal. Christians were a persecuted minority during Roman pagan times and guess what? We defeated them and converted them to our church. YOu liberal pagans are the pathetic ones.

Robert Ahrens said...

You've been brainwashed. There was actually very little actual persecution during Roman times, usually scattered and spotty at its worst.

I would suggest Reading Richard Carrier's book, "Not the Impossible Faith" which explains why christianity was the perfect religion at the perfect time in history to offer Constantine what he wanted and needed to seize control of the Western Roman Empire - by force. The changeover from pagan to christian worship was not bloodless, and the blood was almost exclusively pagan.

I am not a pagan. I am an atheist - do try to keep up.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, but I don't require any pseudo-history to point me to the facts. I already have them.
so you're an atheist and not a pagan, hun? Both are uninformed idiots. My faith offers me salvation. What does your lack of faith offer. Not much, I'll warrant.

Robert Ahrens said...

You've already got the pseudo-history. It's what the church tries to sell as real, but isn't.

Now we get to the real christian methods of argument - call your opponent an idiot or worse.

My lack of faith offers me a world view that is founded on reality. Science, evidence and experience offer a world of difference from simply believing a myth painted with the lipstick of faith. MY world is a fascinating place of wonder, beauty and an ever changing panorama of life.

I am constantly reminded of how much there is to learn about this world and the people in it. That learning process is lifelong, and enriches my mind and my experiences immeasurably.

Since I am not convinced by others that I already have all the facts, I am empowered to learn, study and expand my knowledge. Because I am not encumbered by the false concern for an afterlife that nobody can prove is there, I can concentrate on this one, to my delight and enrichment, as well on the people that I know I can only know here and now.

Which lets me tell them what I know I will never be able to tell them once they're gone. That makes us better off here, without a false hope of some future continuation.

That's what a lack of faith gives me. A better incentive to learn, here and now, and an infinitely better appreciation for what the world really has to offer.

Anonymous said...

Nice try.
My faith gives me the knowledge of a purposeful life and the reward of an eternal afterlife of wonder. How about you? What do you believe happens when we die? Where do we go, in your opinion?

Robert Ahrens said...

How can you have a "purposeful" life if you are focused on the next?

Modern science has shown that our personality is dependent on the functioning structure of the brain. While parts of the brain can function and the body live one, the frontal lobes are the seat of our intelligence and our personality. If those parts of the brain are damaged, the part of you that is "you" is gone. Unrecoverable.

There is no soul. There is no survival once the brain is dead. There is no proof at all of an afterlife. Just children's stories passed on from bronze age religions invented to make people less afraid of natural phenomena not then understood.

The life we have now is all we need, IF it is nurtured, lived to the fullest and stuffed full of learning and experience. If it is neglected in order to make points for some fictitious afterlife, you lose what life you have.

My life has a purpose, it has a number of purposes, dependent on what I give it and how I decide to live it. I am perfectly capable of telling right from wrong without being informed of such by aforementioned children's stories.