California Supreme Court Overturns Gay Marriage Ban

The California Supreme Court has overturned a law banning same-sex marriages. It is a seismic decision that is likely to add the issue to the presidential campaigns and trigger additional state constitutional amendments — and perhaps a federal constitutional amendment. The opinion is below.

The law in question was a1977 statute defining marriage as between a man and a woman. In 2000, Californians reaffirmed the law, though this was a symbolic resolution.

The California courts stopped San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom from continuing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in 2004. However, that was due to the lack of his authority. The court reserved the question addressed today: the constitutionality of the underlying law.

There is already a move to amend the California constitution, which is likely to be accelerated by this decision. However, as a decision based on state law, the U.S. Supreme Court should defer to the highest state court on the question.

The decision was written by Chief Justice George with concurrences from Justices Kennard, Werdegar, and Moreno.

The Court concludes:

In the present case, it is readily apparent that extending the designation of marriage to same-sex couples clearly is more consistent with the probable legislative intent than withholding that designation from both opposite-sex couples and same-sex couples in favor of some other, uniform designation. In view of the lengthy history of the use of the term “marriage” to describe the family relationship here at issue, and the importance that both the supporters of the 1977 amendment to the marriage statutes and the electors who voted in favor of Proposition 22 unquestionably attached to the designation of marriage, there can be no doubt that extending the designation of marriage to same-sex couples, rather than denying it to all couples, is the equal protection remedy that is most consistent with our state’s general legislative policy and preference.

Accordingly, in light of the conclusions we reach concerning the constitutional questions brought to us for resolution, we determine that the language of section 300 limiting the designation of marriage to a union “between a man and a woman” is unconstitutional and must be stricken from the statute, and
that the remaining statutory language must be understood as making the designation of marriage available both to opposite-sex and same-sex couples. In addition, because the limitation of marriage to opposite-sex couples imposed by section 308.5 can have no constitutionally permissible effect in light of the constitutional conclusions set forth in this opinion, that provision cannot stand.

Plaintiffs are entitled to the issuance of a writ of mandate directing the appropriate state officials to take all actions necessary to effectuate our ruling in this case so as to ensure that county clerks and other local officials throughout the state, in performing their duty to enforce the marriage statutes in their In the present case, it is readily apparent that extending the designation of marriage to same-sex couples clearly is more consistent with the probable legislative intent than withholding that designation from both opposite-sex couples and same-sex couples in favor of some other, uniform designation. In view of the lengthy history of the use of the term “marriage” to describe the family
relationship here at issue, and the importance that both the supporters of the 1977 amendment to the marriage statutes and the electors who voted in favor of Proposition 22 unquestionably attached to the designation of marriage, there can be no doubt that extending the designation of marriage to same-sex couples, rather than denying it to all couples, is the equal protection remedy that is most consistent with our state’s general legislative policy and preference.
Accordingly, in light of the conclusions we reach concerning the constitutional questions brought to us for resolution, we determine that the language of section 300 limiting the designation of marriage to a union “between a man and a woman” is unconstitutional and must be stricken from the statute, and that the remaining statutory language must be understood as making the designation of marriage available both to opposite-sex and same-sex couples. In addition, because the limitation of marriage to opposite-sex couples imposed by section 308.5 can have no constitutionally permissible effect in light of the constitutional conclusions set forth in this opinion, that provision cannot stand.
Plaintiffs are entitled to the issuance of a writ of mandate directing the appropriate state officials to take all actions necessary to effectuate our ruling in this case so as to ensure that county clerks and other local officials throughout the state, in performing their duty to enforce the marriage statutes in their jurisdictions, apply those provisions in a manner consistent with the decision of this court. Further, as the prevailing parties, plaintiffs are entitled to their costs.

Personally, I have long preferred to get rid of the term “marriage” in favor of a single civil union standard, click here.

For a copy of the opinion, click here

68 thoughts on “California Supreme Court Overturns Gay Marriage Ban”

  1. You people are nothing more than a bunch of ass kissers, agreeing and patting yourselves on the back wallowing on your own crap. What measure you use to judge yourselves? The Lord says: But now, all you who light fires and provide yourselves with flaming torches, go, walk in the light of your fires and of the torches you have set ablaze. This is what you shall receive from my hand says the LORD you will lie down in torment.

    You think that you are progressive, well let me tell you that you are a bunch of degenerates rejecting the savior of the world, you are going to regret it when the time comes, and the time will come soon enough for you all.
    Jesus said, “I tell you, whoever acknowledges me before men, the Son of Man will also acknowledge him before the angels of God. But he who disowns me before men will be disowned before the angels of God.”

    And you hypocrite, the lover of homosexuals who pretend to be a Christian, the interpreter of the word of God, don’t you know that you can’t worship God and man at the same time, you must worship one or the other. God has commanded you to come out of the world. God says, you adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God”.

    God says, “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” “Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”

    Jesus warned us about your kind. Jesus said “Watch out for false prophets, they come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves, by their fruit you will recognize them. I know your fruit, you like to be on the fence so you can jump to the side that happens to be the most convenient at the time, and yes Pontius, make sure you wash your hands thoroughly because the words of Jesus may have contaminated you.

    Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever.”

    So you firmly believe that America is being lead out of this very period of intolerance, perpetrated by the over zealous fanatics of the religious right, well let me tell you that I don’t give a flip about the religious right or the religious left, I am here as a living testimony of the living word of God, and the word of God lives forever.This generation will pass away, and the next generation will pass away, and the next, but the word of our God stand forever. The Bible says “All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands forever.”

  2. hnrast:

    Hey, found another quote that might interest you as you rail against the infidel:

    “Judge not, that ye be not judged.
    For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
    And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”

    (Matthew 7:1-3 KJV)

  3. Clint:

    Here’s a flash: to hnrast everything and everybody not like him is the enemy. Sin is just the rationale. After responding to him, I want to clean my monitor and keyboard. I doubt he leaves–who else would have him?

  4. rcampbell:

    I could not agree more. These squalls from the right must sound remarkably similar to the dying cries of the dinosaurs just before extinction. As they sink in a mire of their own making, I think a new age is dawning for those who are tolerant and who can adapt to change. That is the great rule of survival in our world and, based on your comments here, I ‘m sure it is the one you taught so long and so well to your students.

  5. I firmly believe that America is being lead out of this very dark period of intolerance, prejudice and ignorance propagated and perpetuate by the over zealous fanatics of the religious right. And it’s our young people who are leading the way. After 40-50 years of teaching the next generations about the importance of people’s civil rights, women’s rights, etc. and the emergence of occupational, educational and social opportunities, they’re not buying the fear and the hate and the bias of their parent’s.

    Too many of us baby boomers were disillusioned by the deaths of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King and/or were bought off by greed that we failed to fully bring about the change we sang and marched and sat in for. This generation of 20-30 year olds are far more color blind, far more willing to accept women as bosses and equals. Far more men stay home with the kids while the wife is the primary bread winner. They are driving the political excitement and will be the margin of victory for President Obama.

    The rantings of the likes of hnrast, dundar, niblick are the last desperate cries trying to keep the old ways of hate alive. Their time is DONE. We will survive their intolerance and move our society forward instead of the backward track they would have us on.

  6. Hnrast,

    Homosexuals are not the enemy–sin is. Were you a better kind of sinner before trusting Christ? If love for these people is not what is motivating you to communicate truth then please go somewhere else.

  7. There is nothing wrong with the message but there is a lot wrong with people. People will use good things for their own purposes. You believe that evolution is a good thing and Hitler used that to substantiate his desire to eradicate Jews. Does evolution teach that genocide of deemed “lesser races” is favorable behavior? No, but anyone can use the concept of natural selection to rationalize putting mentally-handicapped newborns to death.

    Take for instance the verse you quoted. Without understanding what Jesus is talking about and the context of that passage, I could rationalize expressing hatred and loathing to my parents even though He taught the exact opposite.

    Hnrast, homosexuals are not the enemy–sin is. Were you a better kind of sinner before trusting Christ? If love for these people is not what is motivating you to communicate truth then please go somewhere else.

  8. You proudly believe that your degradation is a virtue, but in reality you are morally corrupted from the inside out. Your corruption is so great that you are just like an empty photographic camera with a cracked lens. Your blindness has no bounds, most people have the ability to agree or disagree on various issues and stand on one side or the other, but you just dismiss the truth as non-existing.

    Apparently that is how homosexuals are able to wallow in their perversion, and go against conventional wisdom that views homosexuality throughout the ages as a filthy perversion. Homosexuals just dismiss as non-existing the side, which says homosexuality is a perverted abomination, insisting contrary to reason and facts that it is a perfectly normal behavior to stick their member inside the hole intended for excrement elimination or rubbing their females reproductive lips together, all in the name of love.

    Homosexuals are determined to hide their perversion by glossing it over with the word love. They say what the world needs is more love, but what they really mean is what the world needs is more perversion. If they could, homosexual would convert the whole world to their abomination.

    Homosexuals are demanding equal rights under the law but they already have equal rights under the law just like any anybody else. In reality what homosexuals want is preferential treatment under the law, because they want to normalize their filthy addiction. It is time for homosexuals to go back to their closets where they belong and wallow in their filthiness until it comes out of their noses, eyes and ears. You must stop to shove your abomination on the culture.

    Homosexuals like to scream “keep your religion to yourself” because the don’t like competition, they want to be first in imposing their religion of depravity, misery and death to the unsuspecting populace disguised as love, tolerance, fairness, equal rights and so on.

    The worst act committed by homosexuals it is not their filthy addiction, the worst act committed by homosexuals is their deceiving dangerous agenda to proselytize and convert by force straight America to their perversion. Anyone can read their diabolical agenda in the publication titled The Overhauling of Straight America by Marshall K. Kirk and Erastes Pill—- http://www.article8.org/docs/gay_strategies/overhauling.htm.
    MassResistance advice: As you read this, keep in mind that it was written in 1987 — less than two decades ago — and look around to see how far the homosexual movement has gotten using these techniques.

    Homosexuals have a huge inescapable problem even if they dismiss it as non existing, and his name is Jesus Christ, Jesus said “But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars, their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur, commonly known as hell. This is the second death.”

    The Bible says “You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil; with you the wicked cannot dwell.
    The arrogant cannot stand in your presence; you hate all who do wrong. You destroy those who tell lies; bloodthirsty and deceitful men the LORD abhors.”

    Jesus is saying to you, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am the one I claim to be, you will indeed die in your sins.

  9. hnast:

    “The cost of following jesus
    Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”
    ****************

    That statement alone would be proof enough for any sane person that the message is deeply flawed, unworthy of belief, and should be consigned to the pages of history like Baal worship. Whatever happened to honoring your father and your mother or is that just another of the myriad of contradictions in your First Century guide to life. Masochism is a perversion to most people, but not apparently to your crowd.

  10. Clint:

    “To be completely honest with you Mespo, most of American Christianity disgusts me. It does not follow the teachings of Christ, it throws rocks at homosexuals and then thinks its okay to hire a gay prostitute. ”
    *******************

    That’s the precise self-loathing that many of us on the outside see as the psychosis of fundamentalism and the reason for our concern. It is not a long step from there to suicidal beliefs and the desire to take everyone else with them in some deluded attempted to bring on the self-fulfilling prophecy of Armageddon. If it disgusts you so, why not accept the futility of its message and determine to find your own way without this rickety crutch. At its essence is the belief that only you have it right and that is megalomania by any standard. How can that be a healthy world view?

  11. I never came up with what Jesus said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” He is the one who has it right. I could care less what “most Christians” say. I care what He said. Many “Christians” also slaughtered thousands of Jews and Muslims during the Crusades. Many “Christians” in Salem accused their rivals of witchcraft so that they could be burned alive. To be completely honest with you Mespo, most of American Christianity disgusts me. It does not follow the teachings of Christ, it throws rocks at homosexuals and then thinks its okay to hire a gay prostitute. If that is the Christ we communicate then you have every right to drag us all to the gallows and hang us.

  12. The cost of following jesus
    Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

  13. Clint:

    Well we’ll see what you tell your Jewish friends. You should know that you are out on the fringe religiously speaking even among your fellows. See the new Pew Forum US Religious Landscape Survey. The report finds that:

    “Most Americans agree with the statement that many religions – not just their own – can lead to eternal life. Among those who are affiliated with a religious tradition, seven-in-ten say many religions can lead to eternal life. This view is shared by a majority of adherents in nearly all religious traditions, including more than half of members of evangelical Protestant churches (57%). Only among Mormons (57%) and Jehovah’s Witnesses (80%) do majorities say that their own religion is the one true faith leading to eternal life.

    Most Americans also have a non-dogmatic approach when it comes to interpreting the tenets of their own religion. For instance, more than two-thirds of adults affiliated with a religious tradition agree that there is more than one true way to interpret the teachings of their faith, a pattern that occurs in nearly all traditions.”

    Now you apparently are saying that you and hnrast have it right and a majority of your fellows, equally pious and theologically sound, have it wrong. Why should anyone believe you and hnrast when a majority of those who follow and study your own faith do not. In fact, the survey is a rebuke to your divisive approach where you disagree with a self-proclaimed bigot only in his choice of words and not the conclusion he draws. This is arrogance at its height to say that only the fundamentalists have it right and that a majority of their fellow believers will burn in hell because they are not orthodox enough. Are you drawing the parallels to Islamic fundamentalists, because if not, you certainly should. Religion, as history has proven time and again, is divisive both externally and, perhaps even more importantly,internally. That is the onus it carries and the fundamental argument for its prohibition.

  14. There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.

  15. Yes, Mespo, I do agree with him even in that statement…though I’d use different vocabulary. I never have and never will say that Christianity is not divisive. Jesus extends His offer of mercy to evil people and those who accept are forgiven. No one deserves a “shot” at salvation, Mespo. If God gave me what I deserve then I’d be in hell right now with the worst hypocrite. The problem is that we all tend to think we are inherently good people who do bad things. It is the opposite, we are inherently bad people who sometimes do good things. I have no desire to be offensive, and I do appreciate our dialogue but I do agree with Hnrast on the the points he presented as the gospel. I dislike much of his approach and I don’t know his motives, but he is communicating what I believe is truth.

  16. hnrast:

    Here’s a another little quote I always enjoy but almost forgot. It seems to have application here.

    “Mark you this, Bassanio,
    The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
    An evil soul producing holy witness
    Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
    A goodly apple rotten at the heart:
    O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!

    (The Merchant of Venice, I,iii,87-92)

  17. hnrast:

    Now THAT was helpful. About like running around the room with your fingers in your ears yelling nah, nah, “I can’t hear you.” Hey, here’s a little ditty from the Hadith that sounds remarkably like your unerring word, but is different. Note the similar diction and pace of the words. Also note the utter lunacy of the idea. Sounds awfully familiar to me:

    “Praise be to Allah, Lord of the worlds. Eternal Guardian of the heavens and the earths, Disposer of all created beings, Despatcher of Messengers (may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon them all) who were sent to those they have been entrusted to guide and to reveal the religious laws to, with positive signs and clear-cut proofs. I praise Him for His favours and ask Him to increase His grace and generosity. I bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone, He having no associate, the One, the Subduer, the Generous, the Pardoner, and I bear witness that our master Muhammed is His servant and His messenger, His dear one and His beloved….”

    See I can quote and talk right past you as well. I think you are an atheist as to the Muslim faith and I fear for your eternal damnation. Repent, repent, the end is near!

  18. But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task? Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, like men sent from God.

  19. hnrast:

    The fundamental question, my dear hnrast, is not where is the philosopher, or scholar, but why is your religion valid and the rest invalid? Once that proof comes in, the rest falls neatly into place. Conversely until it does, your rantings and proselytizing are like “resounding gongs or a clanging symbols” in the wilderness. (For 200 points what Bible verse is this from?) Unless you recognize that not everyone in the world (in fact an overwhelming majority of the world’s people whom you yourself believe was created by god and is just as smart as you) doesn’t accept your premise as demonstrably true, you will never make any headway proving your point. As I said, anyone can convert the choir. Prove it, don’t just assume it. Talk to people, don’t preach to them as Clint wisely counseled you to do.

  20. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”

    Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.

Comments are closed.