DOMA and Prop 8: OK, No, and TINGAA!

As I said earlier, I was watching the Scotusblog Coverit feed to see what SCOTUS (Supreme Court of The United States) and my first reaction was “drat, drat, drat”.  I’ve had a chance to review some of the reviews (no, I have NOT read the actual decisions yet – I’m not a lawyer and am feeling that it would take a long time to understand the nuances so I’m relying on others with superior knowledge in the blogosphere to have picked out the troublesome parts.  It seems that there are a couple of things were OK, a definite No, and some stuff that really should concern anyone that believes in self-government, a Representative / Constitutional Republic, and a tri-part functional government.


  • The small “L” libertarian part of me kinda went “er, not unexpected” as soon as I heard that Justice Kennedy wrote the decision on DOMA and figured that Prop 8 was going to go the same way – seen as a victory for the Gay Movement.  And then I started to read some of the commentary and realized “er, not so much” given the basis for the decisions – see TINGAA, below – my libertarianistic leanings are outweighed in this case by my belief in traditional marriage – and what that portends going forward.
  • The idea of Federalism was strengthened. As The Corner pointed out:

To judge from most of the media coverage, today’s Supreme Court decisions in the marriage cases were supposed to give us a final answer on whether the U.S. Constitution requires the states to redefine marriage. They did not.

And this:

declaring that the federal government cannot define marriage for its own federal policies and federal laws but must accept whatever the states decide about marriage.

States still get to define what marriage will and will not be rather than being told from on High (note: High not being The Highest).  I’m not OK with the Feds constantly telling the States how and what they have to do (using the force of “Coercive Federalism” by bribing States with monies extracted from those States’ citizen.  But within its own jurisdiction, it must follow that of the States even after a democratically Congress, who appropriates for and oversees that Fed, has made its own rules?  My head swims…

No – As a Conservative Evangelical, I believe that the process of the “shadow of a pneumbra” has been found in the Constitution akin to that of Roe and abortion. Conservativism implicitly wishes to “conserve’ those traditions that have worked over the ages whereas secular Progressives’ history starts only on the day they were born  and thus will to junk any tradition that is contrary to their religious / political beliefs (the only exception is in bashing Conservatives in which they’ll go back to the Big Bang if need be to dredge up primeval mud to fling instead of a logical note)

  • Obama has already done more of his careful Progressive / Alinsky parsing with this statement:

“On an issue as sensitive as this, knowing that Americans hold a wide range of views based on deeply held beliefs, maintaining our nation’s commitment to religious freedom is also vital,” Obama said. “How religious institutions define and consecrate marriage has always been up to those institutions. Nothing about this decision — which applies only to civil marriages — changes that.”

I carefully and fearfully note the use of, not people of faith, but religious institutions.  In conjunction with the rollout of Obamacare, there is the HHS Governmental mandate that seeks to override the religious beliefs of individual people of faith.  His is the Alinsky speak of “freedom of worship” instead Founding Fathers “prohibiting the free exercise thereof” – a complete rejection of the intent that people should not be coerced by Government – which he is doing.

maintaining our nation’s commitment to religious freedom is also vital“?  Sorry, but his actions belie his words.  In fact, in the words of Joe Walsh: “You Lie!”  Once again, I cannot rectify the traditional definition of commitment to what his Progressive one seems to be in deed – just look at his attempts to force a secular outlook upon various ministries of churches – the churches are ‘safe’ for now only within their four walls of their Houses of Worship – stray outside of those and Obama’s Administration has said “your Religious Freedom stopped when you walked out that door”.

The laws of our land are catching up to the fundamental truth that millions of Americans hold in our hearts:  when all Americans are treated as equal, no matter who they are or whom they love, we are all more free.

No, we are not all free when we are forced to abandon our beliefs – one of the primary reasons why our forefathers left the Old World was to be able to worship and live that life of religious freedom.  So, in this, how is the Progressive Obama Administration any better than what was left behind (or better phrased – to where can we flee to to be free from the Secular Humanism oppression)?

  • Where were the Evangelicals BEFORE this event?   Those of the Jewish faith?

The Mormon Church spoke up, the Catholic Church (madam Pelosi excepted – or is that “to be excommunicated”?), but where were the Evangelicals?  There is no hope of the “Mainline Protestant” Churches – they have already lost themselves in the “social justice” religion.

I have already commented that in too many cases, Evangelicals have paid much attention to the “life hereafter” and have taken a stoic view of life as it happens: “It is on God’s Hands” or “It will be God’s Will”.  In both cases, they ARE correct – God’s Plan will be accomplished.  My beef is in “Hey, that’s fine, but look at country in which God placed you – don’t you think He meant for you to be that “salt of the Earth” that participates fully in the environment given to you?

And I have heard from several of my friends – and of course, I get the silence at the end of the phone when I snarkily ask “ok, what did you do to help promote Traditional Marriage in the public arena?  Oh, nothing?”.    had a friend from the church TMEW and I used to attend (and at which I was a Deacon) stop over that may well be doing some electrical work for me.  He expressed a similar outlook “This is bad, real bad” with a very concerned look on his face – “how did this happen?”  To his credit, he wants to get more involved, to not only be that “Salt of the Earth” in his own life but to stand up publicly.

And to be sure, we of faith are in the targeting systems.  To them, we are merely bigots and homophobes – no other explanation is possible…or permitted.

In suing over marriage one is demanding that others modify their beliefs to accommodate another. Do not people of faith retain their First Amendment liberty of freedom of religion?

TINGAA – This Is Not Good At All

  • Is there any limit to what marriage can be redefined?  The standard was two people of differing genders joined together for the betterment and raising of their children.  With these decisions, marriage is being altered to be mainly (solely?) for the emotional bond between two adults regardless of gender.  When gays were moving towards Civil Unions, I was told in no uncertain fashion (and with some disdain) “No, that is all we want for the same legal protections”.  That disdain came back on the next part of that slippery slope when it came to Gay Marriage “you bigots – how dare you deny us our Rights!”.  Then, my only argument was that of the traditional (and Biblical) definition. They hated it when I asked about polyamory and polygamy (group marriage) – that killed “the narrative”.  Gays were saying “two is not the issue – I just want to marry the one I love just like you” (except I married someone of the opposite gender – still a point of contention, obviously, in the 38 States that have defined it is two-and-opposite.  However, now, we hear from those that say “so, what’s so special about the number two? Why are you denying us the right to be with those (plural) we love?”.

And I have no answer.  And the Supreme Court, in effect, has already labeled me as a hater if I say anything negative (nice of my Government, that way).  And now it will be up to the gays to come up with that defense (but a bet would be the same solipsism of going from Civil Union to Gay Marriage slide on that slippery slope).  The question will be – what comes after that?   Certainly I (and you) can think of more “redefinitions” that people will demand.

How will it “evolve” – or will it become meaningless?  And if the latter, what is the effect on Society in general?  And will that, by definition, require a larger role by Government to try to heal the holes that will undoubtedly come from it?  After all, with all of the moving around, who will care for the children when marriage is all about the adults?

  • This is NOT good for self-Government at all, regardless of whether you are Right or Left:

The Proposition 8 ruling is the most disturbing. Though the Court chose not to rule on the merits, it did establish a terrible precedent, ruling that citizens who pass an initiative do not have the legal right or standing to defend that law when elected officials refuse to do their job and defend the duly enacted law in court.

This amounts to a pocket veto which politicians will abuse in the future, and not just on marriage.

From the decision:

“Once Proposition 8 was approved, it became a duly enacted constitutional amendment,” the U.S. Supreme Court ruled. “Petitioners [the citizens who sought to defend the law in court] have no role — special or otherwise — in its enforcement…States cannot alter that role simply by issuing to private parties who otherwise lack standing a ticket to the federal courthouse,”

So what is the ordinary citizen to think? They participate in the process (as opposed to what seems to be the general public – apathetic), did the work, made the vote – and in the end, the group that did the work of getting Prop 8 were disenfranchised. Seven million people exercised their right to self-government and define what marriage was to be in their State and an activist Judge decided that because all seven million hated gays in voting for Prop 8, overrode it. The right thing was in having their elected Representatives, the Governor and Attorney General, defend their decision – they declined.  So Citizens banded together to move it upward – and are shut out???

This truly IS a “terrible precedent” – and a dangerous one as others have said.  And in DOMA the same thing – a law that was passed by a majority of Congress and signed by a Dem President, Obama and Holder simply declared DOMA to be unconstitutional and refused to defend it (and given his Administration’s penchant to ignore court rulings as if they were above the written law and have the ability to pick and choose, unsurprising) leaving it to the US House to represent the Federal Government to defend their own law.

How is denying We The People a say in such a decision?  No Standing?  How can elected officials just taking a walk be “a good thing”?  Is this not the beginning of the Rule of Men instead of the Rule of Law?

Now, the majority of Supremes decided that simple animus still applied in the Prop 8.  And in DOMA

What is their recourse?

  •  And when the Judiciary acts on emotions and the pressure of “the Mob”, is this a good thing for Justice?  Are they supposed to decide upon cleaving rightly the Law (as opposed to the pounding at the doors?  Or the events in pop culture?

Five justices have taken the position that there is no rationale other than hostility to homosexuals for defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

Or as Kennedy said about DOMA:

“bare congressional desire to harm a politically unpopular group.”

And when the Supreme Court decides that this is a good Judicial “disposition” to have,  we see that “The Mobocracy” has crept in and stolen Lady Justice’s blindfold that formerly allowed a dispassionate decision in weighing out measures of Justice.  Now, as some are opining, the Court is just another Legislative body and one that cannot be trumped due to Marbury – they have already declared themselves to be “more equal” than the Executive or Legislative Branch.  I am not naive enough to believe that there are NO politics involved in the Court.  But for them to use the same rationale that militant Gays have used thus far (“You are ONLY HATERS”) as political memes?

Like, perhaps, we just believe in traditional marriage just as intensively as the other side is for their redefinition of marriage.  Naw, never entered their Judicial meanderings.  What kind of Trust can we have in the Court when it is clear that the Liberal / Progressive wing of SCOTUS is now sympatico with the current political scene – anyone that opposes a Progressive viewpoint can only be viewed as having hatred as best (and viewed as being sub-human in a worse viewpoint).

To believe that the entire Congress only wanted to “harm a politically unpopular group” – really?  Is that the only comeback that can be used when the most of us on this side of the argument is “No, you just don’t understand that it is about TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE – and not your sexual orientation”.

Scalia was right in his dissension:

But to defend traditional marriage is not to condemn, demean, or humiliate those who would prefer other arrangements, any more than to defend the Constitution of the United States is to condemn, demean, or humiliate other constitutions. To hurl such accusations so casually demeans this institution. In the majority’s judgment, any resistance to its holding is beyond the pale of reasoned disagreement. To question its high-handed invalidation of a presumptively valid statute is to act (the majority is sure) with the purpose to “disparage,” “injure,” “degrade,” “demean,” and “humiliate” our fellow human beings, our fellow citizens, who are homosexual. All that, simply for supporting an Act that did no more than codify an aspect of marriage that had been unquestioned in our society for most of its existence — indeed, had been unquestioned in virtually all societies for virtually all of human history. It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race.

More here on Scalia’s dissent; it is clear that the Court has overreached into areas where it should not have.