Friday, August 31, 2007


Iowa's ban on gay marriage has been struck down:
Gay rights advocates won a major victory Thursday when a Polk County District Judge ruled the state's ban on gay marriage violates the Iowa Constitution.

The ruling, which will almost certainly be appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court, says the law must be rewritten in a gender neutral manner to allow same-sex couples to enter into civil marriage.

"This court has yet to hear any convincing argument as to how excluding same-sex couples from getting married promotes responsible reproduction in general or by different-sex couples in particular. So far as this court can tell (the law) operates only to harm same-sex couples and their children," said the ruling from Judge Robert Hanson.


In his ruling, Hanson rejected the county's arguments about the possible harm of same-sex marriage.

"The defendant has produced no evidence indicating that precluding men from marrying other men and women from marrying other women will promote procreation, will encourage child rearing by mothers and fathers, will promote stability for opposite sex marriages, will conserve resources, or will promote heterosexual marriage," Hanson said.

He said he those kinds of arguments are "specious at best."

Damn straight.

The people in Iowa who argue that same-sex marriage will ruin marriage but apparently can't provide any evidence of this are now clamoring for an amendment to their constitution to get around this ruling. But that apparently isn't going to happen any time soon:
Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, a Council Bluffs Democrat, issued a statement saying "the prudent approach" is to wait until the case works its way through the court system.

Pam of course already has a reaction to the ruling, from James Dobson. In addition to the standard "activist judge" claptrap, he says this:
"By striking down Iowa's DOMA, Judge Robert Hanson has shown he believes the desires of adults should trump what's best for children. His ruling represents social engineering at its worst."

Yes, of course. Gay marriage hurts children. Why then couldn't they provide any evidence of this in a court of law? Maybe because it's a fantasy concocted by right-wing homophobes like Dobson?

Anywho. Lambda Legal has a PDF of the decision.

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