Yesterday, The US District Court for the Northern District of California has ruled against the law that was voted on in November 2008 as Proposition 8, the law that banned same-sex marriage in the State of California. The Honorable Judge Vaughn R. Walker stated that the law “fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license.” He goes further to state that California is violating its obligation to equality of marriage in the state. Therefore, the law is unconstitutional. The case was supported by the two biggest cases involving matrimony and reproductive issues as well as personal autonomy, Griswold v. Connecticut and Loving v. Virginia. Both of these cases stated that interracial marriage and use of contraception were fundamental rights protected under the Constitution and only able to be curtailed by due process of law. In addition, the law violated the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection clause by showing preference to heterosexuals exclusively.
This has proven to be an excellent case in the pursuit of our constitutional liberties being fulfilled. To quote John Stuart Mill talking about liberty, “over his mind and over his body, the individual is sovereign.” If this nation is truly free and we already have tested and true liberties of freedom to marry any race or religion, it logically follows that two people of the same gender would have the right to be joined in matrimony. Those who state this is not so can never call themselves true followers of the Constitution. Though it has been argued that this nation was founded on Judeo-Christian philosophy, it is clear that our laws are secular and blind to all but the legal facts. The reality is that everyone has the right to commit themselves to any person they choose. Now the people have a ruling that allows this matter to be settled once and for all. No legislator or executive has the ability to ban it any longer because of the implications to the overturn of this ruling is difficult without endangering other liberties Americans hold dear to due to the cases this ruling was built on. Social conservatives should take heed in the fact that this is the United States of America, where we have an ideal of a restrained government that does not intervene unnecessarily in the personal lives of the citizenry. Maybe in time, Virginia will truly become a place for lovers.
Perry v. Schwarzenegger: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perry_v._Schwarzenegger
Proposition 8: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8_(2008)