• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Subscribe
  • RSS

Federal Judge Strikes Down Wisconsin’s Same-Sex Marriage Ban

gaymarriage

A Federal Judge in Wisconsin has become the latest Federal Judge to strike down a state ban on same-sex marriage, although the ruling has not yet officially gone into effect:

Madison — U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb in Madison Friday overturned Wisconsin’s gay marriage ban, striking down an amendment to the state constitution approved overwhelmingly by voters in 2006.

Crabb did not stay her ruling but also did not immediately issue an order blocking the enforcement of the order, sparking a hasty debate among lawyers who had not even fully digested the decision on whether it meant that couples could immediately marry in the courthouses of Wisconsin.

Instead, Crabb asked the gay couples who had sued over the ban to describe by June 16 exactly what they wanted the judge to block with respect to the enforcement of the law. She said she would then address whether to stay her decision while the matter is on appeal.

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, a Republican, said that “current law remains in force” in Wisconsin and he would appeal the decision.

Dane County Clerk Scott McDonell said he would issue marriage licenses beginning at 5 p.m. Friday into the evening. He said someone from the state Department of Justice advised him not to issue the license but he decided to it anyway.

“They don’t get to tell me that,” he said of DOJ. “A judge gets to. If someone comes to me, how could I say no to them?”

Milwaukee County Clerk Joe Czarnezki said that his office would accept same-sex marriage applications until 9 p.m. Friday and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The county’s corporation counsel advised him that the applications could be issue.

“Personally, I’m pleased she struck the ban down,” he said. “It makes us proud to be in Wisconsin and a state that’s standing up for marriage equality.”

He said the phone has not stopped ringing with inquiries with questions.

In a statement, Van Hollen said that he was “encouraged by the District Court’s refusal to issue an immediate injunction.”

“We have seen the disruption to couples and families throughout the United States when courts have first allowed same-sex marriage only to have those marriages subsequently called into question by another court. I anticipate the United States Supreme Court will give finality to this issue in their next term,” Van Hollen said.

Tamara Packard, a Madison attorney who supports the right to marry but was not involved in the case, said she read the decision to mean same-sex couples could immediately go courthouses to get married.

“People are likely running to their county clerks’ office right now,” she said.

More from Lyle Denniston:

As other judges have done in nullifying same-sex marriage bans, Judge Crabb relied in prt upon the Supreme Court’s U.S. v. Windsor decision late last June striking down a key part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, even though that ruling did not apply to state bans on such marriages.

Citing the Windsor decision, along with “the many [court] decisions that have invalidated restrictions on same-sex marriage since Windsor,” the judge wrote, “it appears that courts are moving toward a consensus that it is time to embrace full legal equality for gay and lesbian citizens.  Perhaps it is no coincidence that these decisions are coming at a time when public opinion is moving quickly in the direction of support for same-sex marriage.”

Counting some rulings in state courts along with the string of decisions in federal district courts, there have been twenty consecutive rulings against state bans on same-sex marriages.  In fact, with the filing of a a new lawsuit in North Dakota earlier today, there is now a legal challenge in every state that continues to ban such marriages.

Same-sex marriage is now fully legal in 19 states.  Bans in some other states also have fallen in court rulings, but those decisions are on hold — except in Oregon and Pennsylvania.

Most interestingly, and amusingly, Judge Crabb followed several other Judges in discussing how the Supreme Court’s decision in Windsor applies to state-level bans on same-sex marriage, with much of the credit going to Justice Scalia for an argument he raised in his dissent:

Finally, in Windsor, 133 S. Ct. at 2693, the Supreme Court concluded that, by denying federal benefits to same-sex couples married under the laws of a particular state, the”practical effect [was] to impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma upon all who enter into same-sex marriages made lawful by the unquestioned authority of the States.” The Court repeated the theme of stigma and second-class status multiple times. Id. at 2694(DOMA “tells [same-sex] couples [married under state law], and all the world, that their otherwise valid marriages are unworthy of federal recognition. This places same-sex couples in an unstable position of being in a second-tier marriage. The differentiation demeans the couple, whose moral and sexual choices the Constitution protects.”); id. at 2696 (“DOMA instructs all federal officials, and indeed all persons with whom same-sex couples interact,including their own children, that their marriage is less worthy than the marriages of others.”); id. (effect of DOMA is to treat some persons as “living in marriages less respected than others.”). Throughout the decision, the Court emphasized that DOMA imposes a disability on same-sex couples, demeans them, violates their dignity and lowers their status. Id. at 2692, 2695.

(…)

On its face,Windsor does not apply to state law bans on marriage between same-sex couples. Windsor,133 S. Ct. at 2696 (limiting its holding to denial of federal benefits of same-sex couples married under state law); Kitchen, 961 F. Supp. 2d at 1194 (“The Windsor court did not resolve this conflict in the context of state-law prohibitions of same-sex marriage.”). However, as noted by Justice Scalia in his dissent, it is difficult to cabin the Court’s reasoning to DOMA only. Windsor, 133 S. Ct. at 2709-10. If anything, the Court’s concerns about the “second-class status” imposed by DOMA on same-sex couples would be more pronounced by a total denial of the right to marry than by the “second-tier” marriages at issue in Windsor that provided state but not federal benefits. Further, although Windsor  involved a federal law rather than a state law, I am not aware of any other case in which the Court applied equal protection principles differently to state and federal government.  Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U.S. 1, 93 (1976) (“Equal protection analysis [with respect to the federal government] in the Fifth Amendment area is the same as that under the Fourteenth Amendment [with respect to the states.]“). This may be the reason why all federal courts  reviewing a ban on same-sex marriage since Windsor have concluded that the ban is unconstitutional.

(Emphasis mine)

Judge Crabb’s opinion, which I’ve embedded below, is worth a read for those interested in the legal issues in these cases, largely because she does a fairly detailed examination of all the applicable case law on each of the issues involved in the case. Typically, when a trial court judge does something like that, it is in no small measure to prepare a defense in advance of the holding that would hopefully be persuasive to an appellate court. In this case, the appeal would be had to the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, which I do not believe has had any of these cases reach it as of yet. The 7th Circuit includes Judges Richard Posner and Frank Easterbrook, both of whom have been generally deemed to be libertarian-leaning , although there is of course no guarantee that either of them would end up on the three judge panel that would be assigned to hear an appeal.

Before it gets to the 7th Circuit, of course, the State of Wisconsin would have to appeal the case. That’s a decision that will be left to either State Attorney General J.B Van Hollen, or Governor Scott Walker. Both are Republicans, of course, but Van Hollen is leaving office at the end of his current term and Walker is up for re-election in a race that remains quite tight. What influence that might have over their decision making, and whether they might be inclined to follow Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett’s lead and not appeal the decision is unclear, but it’s a possibility that shouldn’t be discounted at this point.

In any event, this is yet another victory for marriage equality, and another step along a road that seems to be leading to an inevitable conclusion. The only question now seems to be how soon we’ll get there.

Here’s the opinion:

Wolf & Schumacher Et Al v. Walker Et Al by Doug Mataconis

Related Posts:

About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Pinky says:

    Wasn’t it like two years ago that I was saying that the federal government and the full faith and credit clause were going to bring down the state laws against gay marriage? There’s nothing more boring than someone doing the “I Told ‘Ya So” dance, especially online where you can’t see my footwork, but this always happens. Every time the social right makes a slippery slope argument, it comes to pass.

    Gay teachers, gay adoption, civil unions, gay marriage, polygamy, incest, one after another. Contraception was condemned by all Christian denominations until 1920, then the Anglicans allowed it. Socons said that abortion would be next. Then the very Supreme Court ruling that okayed contraception was used to guarantee abortion. We were told that we were crazy for thinking that euthanasia would be next – even as the left was drafting their “right to die” briefs.

    That’s what’s so maddening. We’re told today that ladder rung J is absolutely crucial, and that it couldn’t possibly lead to rung K. But we remember having the exact same debate about rungs A-I. The earlier rungs are forgotten, because they’re settled, and who would want to turn back the clock? That must mean you’d approve of everything bad that ever happened before. Just give us ladder runk J and it’ll all be fine.

    And that’s the other side. The family keeps falling into further ruin, just like we predict. So on the one hand, the slippery slope argument gets ignored, and on the other, the consequences of all the past decisions get ignored. It’s a refusal to look backward and learn, or to look forward and predict.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 7

  2. rudderpedals says:

    the judge noted, “enshrining the ban in the state constitution seems to suggest that the amendment had a moral rather than practical purpose….I conclude that [state officials] have failed to show that the ban furthers a legitimate state interest.”

    The judge was this —-><—– close to calling out the amendment as having a venal, invidious purpose.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. KM says:

    @Pinky:

    Gay teachers, gay adoption, civil unions, gay marriage, polygamy, incest, one after another.

    Other then incest (which overwhelmingly involves non-consenting minors being abused by authority figures (re the men in the lives)), this list is a problem for you, not society. Society cares that no one is being hurt, everyone is free and consenting, no one is being taken advantage of. Your personal moral system then further goes on to complain about them and frankly, nobody’s life or rights should be affected/restricted by whether or not some random a-hole has an opinion about them.

    Homophobia: The fear that another man will treat you like you treat women. -Andrew Sullivan

    I find it interesting that this chain of control starts with contraception. That’s where you define the breakdown because that’s where the general public realized they didn’t have to buy the whole pile of “moral” dreck conservatives were selling in order to have a functional society. People having equal legal rights is only a slippery slope for people who don’t feel others don’t deserve what they themselves have.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  4. stonetools says:

    @Pinky:
    Look I sympathize with your position-Well, actually, I don’t.
    All the supporters of the ban against Same sex marriage had to do was come up with one good, secular reason why same sex couples should be prohibited from have the same right and ability to marry as hterosexual couples-and your side couldn’t do it.
    All you came up with was a bunch of nonsensical arguments that failed to camouflage the main reason your side opposed it-which was that gay sex was an “abomination” according to the Bible, and also really icky, according to your side.
    Those, unfortunately weren’t a good enough reason to discriminate against gays, according to trhe US Constitution.
    Your side’s arguments have failed to convince a single judge, whether that judge was appointed by Reagan, both Bushes, Clinton, or Obama. At this point is pretty clear that legally, your side can’t win. And you’re losing in the court of public opinion.
    You might to re-examine your position Just why do you want to deny gays the right to marry, really? Why do you want government to enforce that prohibition?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  5. beth says:

    @Pinky: Not to pile on but you state that “the family keeps falling into further ruin” as if gay marriage has anything to do with that. I’ve been hearing about the ruin of the American family since I was a kid and that’s 40 years ago. I suspect when you talk about that subject you’re mostly focusing on divorce and children being born out of wedlock, both of which occurred quite frequently before gays even began to dream of getting legally married. There’s a point to be made about the dissolution of strong family ties and how a two person union is usually stronger, more prosperous and better off for children but it has nothing to do with whether that two person union is gay or straight.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  6. Tlaloc says:

    I find it interesting that this chain of control starts with contraception. That’s where you define the breakdown because that’s where the general public realized they didn’t have to buy the whole pile of “moral” dreck conservatives were selling in order to have a functional society.

    Christianity has always seized upon control of sex as one of it’s two major powers for controlling people (the other, of course, being the afterlife of terrible eternal agony that the all loving god will inflict on anyone who breaks any of his rules).

    If a religion claimed we could only eat with the church’s blessing (a much more extreme version of the prayers Christians, adn other faiths, often offer before meals) most of us would recognize it as a blatant power grab- the church would be setting itself up as gatekeeper to a fundamental biological need. But with sex we let them get away with it for millenia.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  7. beth says:

    @Tlaloc: But notice it’s only women they want to control. When was the last time you saw a demonstration outside CVS against them selling condoms? Who do they think these women are having sex with?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. anjin-san says:

    @ Pinky

    polygamy, incest,

    Any time someone brings these up in a discussion about gay marriage, they can pretty much be dismissed as having anything worthwhile to say on the subject.

    The family keeps falling into further ruin, just like we predict.

    Ah, so this is all the fault of those darned liberals. Things such as increased leisure time, increased disposable income, new technologies like TV, the internet, & cell phones, and better dissemination of information have nothing to do with it. Mothers going out of the house and into the workforce because two incomes are needed to hope to maintain the lifestyles and consumer goods people want today have nothing to do with it.

    Then, let’s consider the idealization of earlier iterations of the American family. When my dad was coming up, wives were expected to put in 10-14 hour days doing housework and cooking. They were also pretty much expected to keep their opinions to themselves and be subservient to their husbands, who were generally dictators in the home, sometimes benevolent, sometimes anything but.

    Couples stayed in miserable marriages because divorce was not acceptable. Wives and kids generally payed the majority of the price for this.

    Children were “seen and not heard.” The were expected to obey authority figures without question and accept what they were told at face value, again no questions. If a girl from a wealthy family “got in trouble” people with money arranged for a quite abortion in another country, or shipped their daughter off to a boarding school to have the baby out of sight. If your family did not happen to be rich, the girls life was often ruined, and the kids along with it.

    Too many of the ideas conservatives hold about pre nineteen sixties life in this country seem to come from old TV shows and movies.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  9. Another Mike says:

    @stonetools: Gays have always had the right to marry. If a man and a woman went to the county clerk to get a marriage license, the clerk might ask them a few questions, but would never ask if one or the other was gay.

    The problem came about when someone noted that homosexual people and regular people were actually two separate species. Laws made for one species could not apply to the other specie, therefore the two species were treated differently. The 14th amendment says in part “nor deny to any specie within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    Of course, there are not really two species. I can roll out of bed with my gay lover and decided I have had enough, and then start dating and marry a woman and raise a family. Contrast this with race. I cannot be black in the morning and then white the afternoon, because I got tired of being black.

    There were many arguments from reason made to the Supreme Court. They were not even considered. The justices wetted their metaphoric fingers and held them to the wind to see which way sentiment was blowing and ruled accordingly.

    I believe it will take a few generations to discover whether homosexual marriage is good or bad for society. It probably does not matter, because society will continue down the path it is headed regardless.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8

  10. Pinky says:

    @anjin-san: You prove my point. It’s always the case that the next rung seems inconceivable. When this rung is firmly grasped, the next one will be approached. It always happens. And actually, you demonstrated my other point too. There’s never a connection drawn between the latest social experiment and the deterioration of the family, even when it’s predicted. I can’t say that it takes you by surprise, because it doesn’t even seem to register.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  11. Grewgills says:

    @Pinky:
    Loving v. Virginia was a rung in that ladder too, should that have been decided differently because of the slippery slope that today is allowing gay marriage and will one day lead to people being able to marry their pets?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  12. anjin-san says:

    @ Pinky

    You seem to entirely miss my point – which is that a lot of what you imagine to be the pre-”fallen into ruin” family is something that exists in fiction, and that there were many aspects to American family life in earlier times that were not all that desirable in reality.

    If you want to worship a two-dimensional fantasy about the good old days, have at it. Yes, once upon a time, the social order was rigged almost entirely for the benefit of (straight) white men, no doubt an appealing thought for some. Those days are over. For the most part, the family unit is doing just fine. I also note that you are taking it as a given that the family has “fallen into ruin” – just because you see it this way does not make it so.

    People that are poorly equipped to deal with change will continue to pine for the world that exists in Leave it to Beaver reruns – I will leave them too it, as long as they do not attempt to deny freedom to other American citizens to pursue their lives as they see fit. Don’t try to force others into the jello mold of an existence you seem to prefer.

    I also note that you conveniently ignored some of the many causal factors I mentioned that have been involved in the decline of the cookie cutter traditional American family you are talking about, and that you are taking it as a given that your view that the family has “fallen into ruin” – just because you see it this way does not make it so.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  13. An Interested Party says:

    Gays have always had the right to marry.

    Of course, there are not really two species. I can roll out of bed with my gay lover and decided I have had enough, and then start dating and marry a woman and raise a family. Contrast this with race. I cannot be black in the morning and then white the afternoon, because I got tired of being black.

    This tired disingenuous argument again…the idea that homosexuality is simply a “choice” that can be turned on and off like a switch is as ridiculous as the idea that a person can change skin colors from the morning to the afternoon…

    It probably does not matter, because society will continue down the path it is headed regardless.

    Of course it won’t matter…granting gay people the same rights as heterosexuals does nothing to hurt society…

    There’s never a connection drawn between the latest social experiment and the deterioration of the family, even when it’s predicted.

    Can anyone make a reasonable argument as to how SSM will lead to the deterioration of the family…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  14. KM says:

    What people forgot is that the traditional family is not what we as American are familiar with. The nuclear family is not the way the world worked for quite some time – the extended family was how society lived. The nuclear family became a financially viable social unit only relatively recently (Industrial Revolution or so) because you needed as many hands on the farm as possible to make a go of it. I’m always amused when I hear the family is breaking down like the model has never changed before. The “family” is not one size fits all. It changes to meet the needs of society and its people. Blood is still blood – how you define a unit is what changes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  15. Grewgills says:

    The traditional family™ that we keep hearing about, is a relatively new phenomenon that did not include interracial or interfaith marriages, but did include the female as subservient to the point of being considered property, allowed the beating of the female and did not acknowledge even the possibility of spousal rape, nor did it include an out when that arrangement was clearly failing. The traditional family™ needed changing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  16. Rafer Janders says:

    @Pinky:

    Gay teachers, gay adoption, civil unions, gay marriage, polygamy, incest, one after another.

    One of these things is not like the other. Can you point out which one, Pinky? I realize that like most conservatives you have a problem with the concept of “consent”, but even someone of your limited logical abilities should be able to see where you stepped in it here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  17. Rafer Janders says:

    @Pinky:

    The family keeps falling into further ruin, just like we predict.

    So the answer to that is to…prevent people from getting married?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  18. Rafer Janders says:

    @Another Mike:

    I can roll out of bed with my gay lover and decided I have had enough, and then start dating and marry a woman and raise a family.

    Um…just what are you trying to tell us about yourself? Because I can assure you that most of us don’t switch-hit with quite the ease you do….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  19. Pinky says:

    @Rafer Janders: Incest can be consensual. Who’s to say that a bro and sis can’t get together if they want to and they’re old enough? Not all marriages produce children, right? Justice delayed is justice denied, and nobody’s equal unless everybody’s equal. Just you wait.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  20. Rafer Janders says:

    @Pinky:

    Incest can be consensual.

    Every so often I ask myself, could I be a conservative?

    And then I realize that no, I don’t have quite the depraved and twisted imagination for it, I don’t spend enough time obsessively thinking about incest and bestiality, or what goes on in other people’s bedrooms, the way that they seem to.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  21. Matt Bernius says:

    Couple points:

    1. On Polygamy, to my knowledge, there has yet to be any effort in any country that has approved gay marriage to make polygamy legal.

    2. As pointed out before, altering the marriage laws to include polygamy requires a much more significant re-write and change in form than gay marriage. That said, of the “slippery slopes” it’s the most likely to actually happen.

    3. On the topic of Incest, looking away from non-consensual to consensual, there are two key aspects that make it unlikely that we ever hit that point:

    First is the well established public health issue: inbreeding. There is simply no way around this and it’s different than the supposed public health problems caused by homosexual behavior (which, generally speaking rely on junk science or have nothing to do with reproductive issues). And while I appreciate that a married couple does not necessarily need to have children, the fact is that in any cross sex pairing, the possibility is always there and there’s no way (short of chemical castration) to eliminate it.

    I suppose you could imagine a case where *if* the parties submit to some form of castration they would be allowed to wed. But that’s an incredibly convoluted process and simply *not* realistic except in the fever dreams of social cons.

    The second reason incestual marriage doesn’t work is that there is little legal benefit to it. Remember that a key reason for the legal acceptance of same sex marriage was that gay couples could not become a *legal* family and gain all the rights associated with that (i.e. visitation, inheritance, etc). Family members are already *legally* that. They have those existing rights (though if we are talking distant relations things get dicier).

    Beyond all of that, the Incest Taboo is, in just about every culture (outside of the European Aristocracy), the longest held of all taboos (far longer held and preserved than taboos against homosexual behavior, which, generally speaking are more “modern”).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  22. Matt Bernius says:

    @Grewgills:
    Completely correct. If conservatives want to preserve the “family” structure they should get to repealing divorce laws and restricting the rights of women. Because that’s what held the illusion of the happy family together for centuries.

    Then again, given the high rate of divorce among the conservative intelligentsia. Remind me again, how many of the Presidential Primary candidates from last cycle were on (at least) their second marriage?

    BTW, if one is looking to preserve families, as has been pointed out numerous times, they should be *encouraging* marriage (especially in communities historically seen as being promiscuous) not trying to stamp it out.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  23. Another Mike says:

    @Rafer Janders: Whether I will or would do that is one thing, but I could. It is in my head. An attitude about the way things are. No one knows what is in my head, if I do not tell them.

    The big step was declassifying it as a mental illness. Next was to drop it being a perversion. But it is still just a thing in my head. But it is a right under the law. It is sort of like religion, an attitude about something.

    But don’t presume to know anything about an anonymous poster.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  24. Matt Bernius says:

    @Another Mike:

    The big step was declassifying it as a mental illness. Next was to drop it being a perversion.

    First, you missed a critical previous big step – *classifying it as a mental illness* – For most of its history, Homosexuality was *not* understood as a mental illness. It only became a mental illness in the late 19th century. And by the late 20th century (less than 100 years) medical/psychological understanding advanced to the point that science reversed itself.

    But it is still just a thing in my head. But it is a right under the law. It is sort of like religion, an attitude about something.

    Clearly you believe that homosexuality is a *choice.* Just out of curiousity, is there any evidence to the contrary that would make you reconsider that notion?

    Further, do you consider heterosexuality to be a choice (i.e. just something in your head)?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  25. Rafer Janders says:

    @Matt Bernius:

    Further, do you consider heterosexuality to be a choice (i.e. just something in your head)?

    A question I’ve had some success with, when arguing with people who claim that being gay is a choice, is asking “so, when did you decide to become straight?”

    It usually elicits a puzzled look and the answer “uh, never, I was always straight….”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  26. Matt Bernius says:

    @Rafer Janders:
    Great strategy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  27. Another Mike says:

    @Matt Bernius: In some people choice plays no role and in other cases it plays some role. It is not something that is altogether clear. I would say that it is a preference, and where do preferences come from? I do not think we can say with certainty. I view people as basically the same, except that in some the animal mating instinct has gone awry. They know they are supposed to put it somewhere, but they are not sure where.

    The Catholic church views homosexual acts as disordered, which is to me the same as saying the animal mating instinct gone awry. It is not clear to anyone how this happens. There are various opinions, but serious study of the issue is not something desirable in today’s political climate. That is about where I have to leave it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  28. anjin-san says:

    @ Another Mike

    In some people choice plays no role and in other cases it plays some role.

    And you base this conclusion on what?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  29. Grewgills says:

    @Another Mike:
    Are you saying that you could choose to be gay at any point? That say tomorrow if you wanted you could find men desirable as romantic partners? That if only homosexual marriage was legal, that you could happily accept that and find a nice man to marry?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  30. Another Mike says:

    @anjin-san: Do you have contradictory evidence to share, or are you just trying to goad me? Or maybe it works like the energy levels of the electron where it is one level or the other and cannot be in between?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  31. An Interested Party says:

    I would say that it is a preference, and where do preferences come from?

    As written by someone who has never had to face the discrimination and homophobia that other people live with on a daily basis…tell the scores of gay people who have lost their jobs, their children, their families, and in some cases, even their lives that what they are is simply a “preference”…

    I view people as basically the same, except that in some the animal mating instinct has gone awry. They know they are supposed to put it somewhere, but they are not sure where.

    Yes, of course, because being gay is all about the sex…by the way, plenty of people know exactly where to put it…the problem is that people like you find such choices to be distasteful…

    The Catholic church views homosexual acts as disordered, which is to me the same as saying the animal mating instinct gone awry.

    Considering their very own dirty laundry, those in positions of power within the Catholic Church are really in no position to tell anyone else how to live…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  32. anjin-san says:

    @ Doug

    So you would rather have the economy in free fall than be where we are today.

    Got it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  33. anjin-san says:

    @ Another Mike

    Do you have contradictory evidence to share

    For me to present contradictory evidence, you would have to first present evidence. Do you know what “evidence” is? Hint – an opinion, especially one that appears to have no foundation in reality, does not count.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  34. anjin-san says:

    @ AIP

    As written by someone who has never had to face the discrimination and homophobia that other people live with on a daily basis

    Yes. And from my perspective, I’ve listened to many stories from gay/lesbian friends who hid from and battled their true natures for years or even decades before accepting the fact that they are gay. In most cases, there was a lot of pain and loss in this process.

    To trivialize this as a “lifestyle choice” is profoundly ignorant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  35. Pinky says:

    @Rafer Janders: You’d be surprised how little time I think about what goes on in other people’s bedrooms. This is about what goes on in the courtroom, and a person doesn’t have to be a genius or obsessed with sex to see that it’s the progressive who has turned every sexual act into a political cause. Case in point: I respond to one in every two hundred, maybe, articles about this subject, and I’m denounced as being fixated on it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  36. anjin-san says:

    @ Pinky

    This is about what goes on in the courtroom

    Yes, the courtroom. Where people go when they get tired of conservatives trying to dictate what goes on in the bedroom.

    My own marriage (which produced a lot of those good old fashioned family values) would have been prohibited in California in my parents lifetime. So perhaps I am “obsessed” with ending that sort of discrimination against my fellow Americans.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  37. Grewgills says:

    a person doesn’t have to be a genius or obsessed with sex to see that it’s the progressive who has turned every sexual act into a political cause

    Really? every sexual act? Come on, you are better than this.
    Supporting homosexuals’ equal rights to marry and generally thinking the government has no place in deciding what consenting adults can do in their bedrooms is far different than the picture you are painting. It was also progressives that ended miscegeny laws. Remember sex with what were then considered lower races was considered little better than bestiality by the conservatives of the day. So, yes our sexual mores change over time and yes it is generally progressives that initiate the change (but that is rather definitional, since not to change would be conservative), but that has at least as often as not been a good thing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  38. An Interested Party says:

    …it’s the progressive who has turned every sexual act privacy issues about what goes on in people’s homes and other personal spaces into a political cause.

    Happy to be of help…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  39. Matt Bernius says:

    @Another Mike:

    There are various opinions, but serious study of the issue is not something desirable in today’s political climate. That is about where I have to leave it.

    This is an ignorant statement. There have been countless serious studies into the issue of homosexuality, genetics and environment, going back — literally — decades. The DSM team didn’t just stick their finger in the air and change the diagnosis.

    For example, a Google scholar search on “studies homosexuality genetics) returns over 29,400 – since 2013 there have been over 5000 articles published. There continues to be mounting evidence that back the theory that genetics plays a critical role in sexual preference.

    Those findings care coupled with that with countless articles that find homosexual behavior *naturally* occurring in almost all major animal species.

    In short, all of the evidence points to homosexuality being a fundamentally *biological* characteristic that regularly occurs in all species.

    Claiming that there isn’t current data or serious study on this topic (especially in that age of Google Scholar) is just false.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  40. Matt Bernius says:

    @Another Mike:

    In some people choice plays no role

    In other words you agree that sex is as innate as race for certain people. And at that point the entire foundation of your argument falls apart. Because if sexuality is as innate as race, then we need to treat it in a similar fashion. If two people of any races are able to get married and get the rights becoming a family offers, then so to should two people of any sexuality (provided it doesn’t violate existing contract law).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  41. DrDaveT says:

    @Matt Bernius:

    BTW, if one is looking to preserve families, as has been pointed out numerous times, they should be *encouraging* marriage (especially in communities historically seen as being promiscuous) not trying to stamp it out.

    Maybe they’re afraid that gay marriages will turn out to be more stable than hetero marriages, and will make them look bad…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  42. Another Mike says:

    @Matt Bernius: You write: “In other words you agree that sex is as innate as race for certain people.”

    Of course I do not agree. Because someone did not make a conscious choice does not mean it was innate. There are probably many things that affect us without us even realizing it. Where do our preferences come from? Where do our attitudes come from? Where does our basic personality come from? How do our parents or early childhood experiences form our attitudes and behaviors? What does early sexual abuse do to us?

    I am open to scientific evidence that homosexuality is innate. I should think that any reasonable person would be. But that does not necessary solve society’s problem. Color blindness is innate, but there are limits put on people due to this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  43. An Interested Party says:

    Where do our preferences come from?

    Indeed…where did your preference to be heterosexual come from?

    Where do our attitudes come from?

    Well, it’s obvious where your attitudes come from…

    Where does our basic personality come from?

    Yes, that really flaming homosexual became that way from watching too much of Paul Lynde as a child…

    How do our parents or early childhood experiences form our attitudes and behaviors?

    Ditto above, plus, heaven forbid that there was no butch male role model in the house…we know what that will do to male children…

    What does early sexual abuse do to us?

    Let me guess, you think that might make someone gay?

    Color blindness is innate, but there are limits put on people due to this.

    That’s just brilliant…don’t let the color blind drive because they can’t tell the difference between a red light and a green light and don’t let the gays marry each other because it somehow causes damage to society…it just makes so much sense…there’s a reason people like you are losing ground in the culture wars…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0