Saturday, May 5, 2007

I think I know the answer to this one

While Connecticut's Supreme Court is planning to hear arguments challenging the ban on gay marriage in 9 days, another case has started in Iowa.
An attorney representing six gay and lesbian couples argued Friday afternoon that the state's ban on gay marriage is not simply a rhetorical debate surrounding right and wrong, but an urgent issue that affects the lives of longtime couples who cannot marry.

"This is not a hypothetical issue - these are real people," said Des Moines attorney Dennis Johnson, who represents the 12 clients from Iowa and three of their children. "These people are here because the state treats them like second-class citizens."

Roger Kuhle, representing Polk County Recorder Tim Brien, called the case a "test lawsuit" set up by Lambda Legal, the organization backing the plaintiffs.

Brien was named the defendant in the lawsuit after staff in his office refused to issue marriage licenses to each of the couples because of current Iowa law. Kuhle contended the case should be settled in the Legislature, not before a judge.

The defense's argument is... absurd.
"When you look at equal protection in this country, no court has found it's a fundamental right," Kuhle said. "Efforts to redefine the law to include marriage between same-sex people is not a fundamental right."

Equal protection before the law is not a fundamental right?? I don't really think this guy went to law school... or high school, for that matter.
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

And someone else had to bring up children:
Chuck Hurley, president of the conservative Iowa Family Policy Center, said Lamda Legal chose Iowa as a test case because the group identified a series of court rulings over the state's history that provides strong language defending civil rights and equal protection. The cases were wide ranging in subject and included gambling tax issues, racial and sex discrimination and those of noncustodial parents.

He said those cases addressed constitutional rights, but "we don't think these analogies carry to marriage because of its fundamental nature of needing a man and woman to procreate."

Hurley said marriage is a historically accepted social structure that governments have accepted for centuries as the best way to raise children.

"That's the core function, legally, to make sure children have the best chance to do well," he said.

Really? To make sure children have the best chance to do well? Well, then since these six couples are raising three children, you'd like to see them get married, right? And in the Connecticut case, you'll allow the plaintiffs to marry so their fourteen children "have the best chance to do well", right? And for all the gay couples nationwide (warning: PDF), you'll allow them to get married so their quarter-million children will "have the best chance to do well", right?

Or do children not matter when their parents are gay?

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