Tuesday, May 26, 2009

California Upholds Prop 8 - Marriage Is Between A Man & A Woman

You can cancel the cake. The California Supreme Court has bowed to the will of California's electorate on the issue of gay marriage - it is no longer a Constitutional right in California.

The California Supreme Court, which last year found a state constitutional right to gay marriage under the state's equal protection clause, has now found that Prop 8 - a Constitutional Amendment passed by the California electorate - worked a valid change to the state Constitution. Gay marriage is no longer legal in California. The Washington Post has the story.

Gay rights activists have pursued a two pronged approach to furthering their goal of legalizing gay marriage throughout America. One is through the ballot box - and though I disagree with gay marriage, that's fine. The ballot box is where new social policy should be made. The second prong pursued by activists - and with which I vociferously disagree - is the tried and true left wing blueprint of using our Court system to force on America a cause they cannot pursue through the ballot box. This invariably becomes an argument for gay marriage under state equal protection clauses.

The equal protection clause of most states' Constitutions date back well over a century and were not composed in contemplation of modern, avant garde social issues. Indeed, I think it safe to say that, given the much stronger role of religion in life of the time, that the drafters would have explicitly excluded gay marriage from equal protection clause if they could have foreseen it ever arising as an issue.

The duty of a Court is to interpret the laws passed by legislators and constitutional conventions. It is not the duty of a court to create law - particularly Constitutional law - according to its own whim. Doing otherwise inevitably creates massive distortions in our democracy. Think the abortion of Roe v. Wade.

In California, the people have spoken - and the Court has acted appropriately. The recourse of gay rights activists is now to the ballot box - precisely where it should be.

Update: Gay Patriot has a similar take - that the California Supreme Court made the right call.

Update: That bane of our nation, the ACLU, is all set to use this decision to stoke their piggy bank. According to the ACLU, the decision of the California Supreme Court puts all minority rights up for grabs in California - a proposition ludicrous on its face, but one that will no doubt help the cash flow.

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