The First District court of appeals in Boston today, May 31, ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. The three panel judge based their decision on the idea that the federal law interferes with the right of a state to define marriage and therefore denies married homosexual couples federal benefits given to married heterosexual couples.
The ruling will be stayed while the case is appealed. Like the California Proposition 8 case, the appeal will most likely be heard en banc before the full panel of judges of the First Circuit Court before heading to the Supreme Court.
William Duncan, from the National Organization for Marriage interpreted the court’s decision thus:
Three judges on a federal appeals court purported to apply two amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the Tenth and Fourteenth, to Congress’ definition of marriage which forecloses same-sex marriage for federal-law purposes. The panel said the law did not exceed Congress’ power and would be valid under any analysis used between the time of the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment (1868) and 1973. The panel said, however, that since 1973 the implications of a handful of U.S. Supreme Court decisions have newly invested the federal courts with a power to second-guess Congress’s purposes. In this case, these three judges decided Congress’s rationales for preserving in law what has been the overwhelming norm of marriage (probably unanimous) for millennia just didn’t measure up.
It is clear from both the DOMA rulings and the Proposition 8 rulings that the Supreme Court will have to take up the issue of gay marriage.
I have been asked why I care about the legalization of gay marriage when it does not affect my heterosexual marriage and my family, and isn’t that just discrimination against a minority group?
I lived in Toronto, Ontario when gay marriage became legal in 2003. This did not have any effect on my individual marriage. It did have an immediate effect on my family and how I taught my children. With the change in the law my young children saw a number of homosexual couples being overtly intimate on the streets. My children asked questions. I had to answer, even though my 6, 4 and 2 year old children did not know anything about sexual intercourse and sexuality. As time has passed, the affect that gay marriage has on individuals and families is becoming more and more clear.
Gay marriage in Canada, and gay marriage and civil unions in the United States and other nations has a huge effect on future laws, children’s education, religious freedom, freedom of speech, and decency. It changes society, and as Canada and other nations are proving it sexualizes children, promotes early promiscuity and sexual experimentation while silencing parents, families, and religions.
This last winter in Laramie, Wyoming, my 16 year old niece took a high school course on diversity. Instead of the course being about different races and cultures, the course was mainly about homosexuality. In this class students were encouraged to experiment with homosexuality. Any voices against the gay agenda were immediately silenced and counted as bigoted.
In Ottawa, Ontario there is a “Sex: a Tell-All Exhibition” at the Ottawa’s Museum of Science and Technology created for teens by the Montreal Science Centre with the help of “sexologists.” Among other things, it praises multiple partners and includes a “climax room” with depictions of aroused genitals as a recording describes the sensation of orgasm. This has been in other museums in Canada, and until there was enough outrage in the community, the exhibit displayed an animated video of teens masturbating and allowed children as young as 12 to enter the exhibit without an adult.
Last winter in Alberta, Canada, Bill 2, the Alberta Education Act, originally stated that even home schooled families would not be allowed to teach their children religious-based beliefs on homosexuality. The bill passed with an amendment stating that, “the government of Alberta recognizes that parents have a right to choose the religious and ethical traditions in which their children are raised”. The amendment doesn’t change that public and private schooled children will be taught a comprehensive sexual education course that must “honour and respect” the controversial Alberta Human Rights Act that has been used to target Christians with traditional beliefs on homosexuality.
Right now in the UK, A draft of new guidelines titled “Personal beliefs and medical practice” issued by the UK’s General Medical Council warns doctors that exercising their conscience rights to not prescribe the abortifacient morning after pill, not referring for abortions or performing gender reassignment surgery, could endanger their license to practice, and psychologists are not allowed to offer any therapy for unwanted same sex attraction.
A bill is currently going through the California legislature that would ban all therapies used to treat unwanted homosexual feelings regardless of patient consent and desire.
There are numerous cases where business owners, hotel owners, and doctors have been sued for denying services because of religious beliefs or moral objections. I repeat: legalized gay marriage has a huge effect on future laws, children’s education, religious freedom, freedom of speech, and decency.