Gay marriage

No, this is not Jim Crow for gays, Part Two

Featured image As I explained here, Arizona S.B. 1062 would not subject gays to a regime of discrimination. The bill is simply an attempt (successful in my view) to balance the right to religious freedom and the right of non-discrimination. Eleven leading religious-liberty scholars have written to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to provide her with a sorely needed rational analysis of S.B. 1062 as she considers whether to sign it. The professors »

No, this is not Jim Crow for gays — understanding Arizona S.B. 1062

Featured image The Arizona legislature has passed S.B. 1066. It amends a 1999 Arizona law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). It does so in an attempt to strengthen the ability of vendors to follow their religious conscience by, for example, declining to provide services at gay weddings. The text of the legislation can be found here. The legislation has generated much criticism. The two most recent Republican presidential candidates have »

Supreme Court halts gay marriage in Utah, for now

Featured image The Supreme Court has stayed a Utah federal district judge’s decision that struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. The Supreme Court’s order stops for now a wave of same-sex marriages across the state. Utah’s ban is reinstated and will remain in force pending appellate review. There were no dissents from the Supreme Court’s stay order, which suggests that all nine Justices agree with it. However, the order tells »

Polygamy: It’s Coming

Featured image In Lawrence v. Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court, reversing its own then-recent holding in Bowers v. Hardwick, ruled that laws against homosexual sodomy are unconstitutional–even though the Constitution says nothing about sex, let alone sodomy–on the ground that the right of privacy (also never mentioned in the Constitution) protects all consensual, private sexual contact between adults. Lawrence immediately was seen as a milestone in the campaign for gay marriage. Some »

Study: Graduation rates lag among children from same-sex households

Featured image A Canadian study by professor Douglas Allen of Simon Frazier University finds that children raised by married biological parents do better in school than children raised by same-sex couples. The study appears in the Review of Economics of the Household, which I understand is a peer-reviewed journal. The study uses a random 20 percent sample of 2006 Canadian census data. According to the author, this sample size “allows for control »

House of Cards of Windsor

Featured image Justice Scalia registered a stinging dissent in the Windsor case, in which the Supreme Court invalidated the Defense of Marriage Act on grounds that–to be polite–are opaque. My old friend Larry Tribe, now the Left’s favorite constitutional scholar, took Scalia to task. And George Mason’s Michael Greve unloaded on Tribe with both barrels. You won’t see better pyrotechnics until the day after tomorrow. You really should read it all, but »

Why the unusual 5-4 split in the Prop 8 case?

Featured image The Supreme Court’s decision in Perry that the parties defending the constitutionality of Prop 8 lack standing did not conform to the usual pattern in cases decided 5-4. Usually in such cases, we see the Court’s four liberal Justices — Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan — voting one way while either four or five of the remaining Justices vote the other. Typically, if only four of these Justices vote together, »

What Does It All Mean?

Featured image I’m not sure I can recall a 48-hour period that has sowed more confusion that the 48 hours just past.  Sandy Levinson, a straight-shooting liberal, says the Court’s gay marriage decisions are judicial camels (a horse designed by committee).  I guess I’ll have to wade through the Court’s two opinions, but I doubt that will help very much. Once again, Justice Kennedy has marred what might be a defensible holding »

Justice Alito denounces our “arrogant legal culture”

Featured image Justice Alito’s dissent in the DOMA case contains an instant-classic footnote (number 7). I reproduce it below in its entirety, hoping that you will read the whole thing: The degree to which this question [the traditional view of marriage vs. the consent-based view] is intractable to typical judicial processes of decisionmaking was highlighted by the trial in Hollingsworth v. Perry. In that case, the trial judge, after receiving testimony from »

The Supreme Court does marriage [with updates]

Featured image The Court has begun the festivities by holding that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. The decision was 5-4, with Justice Kennedy writing the opinion. Chief Justice Roberts wrote a dissent, as did Justice Scalia. Scalia says the ruling springs from a “diseased root: an exalted notion of the role of this court in American democratic society.” That’s it exactly. I made this point here, among other places. I’m »

This day in Supreme Court essentialism

Featured image Next month, the U.S Supreme Court, in it wisdom, may pass judgment on the age-old definition of marriage. Until very recently, marriage has universally been deemed to require an opposite sex component, but the Court may overturn this definition. The fact that the Supreme Court is even considering such a change represents, for me, the reductio ad absurdum of American constitutional law jurisprudence. The fact that, until very recently, marriage »

A New Wine for Our Times

Featured image As I mentioned here once before, the fad in California wines for more than a decade now has been the heavy emphasis on what I call MSG wines.  No, that’s not a designation of something to order in your favorite Chinese restaurant; rather, it refers to Rhone-style blends featuring Mourvedre-Syrah-Grenache.   Many of these blends are knockouts, and adjusting the blend allows winemakers to bob and weave depending on the weather »

A French “Oui” for Gay Marriage? Not So Fast

Featured image It’s an axiom of American cosmopolitanism that Europe is far advanced over the United States in terms of social democracy, tolerance, openness, and so forth, and at the pinnacle of European sophistication stands France.  The French have it over us on everything from existential filmmaking, wine and cheese, anti-semitism, and embrace of gay . . .  —wait, what’s this?  A major populist uprising against gay marriage in France, with hundreds »

CRB: Gay rites

Featured image We conclude our preview of the new issue of the Claremont Review of Books this morning with a humdinger. Thanks to our friends at the CRB for the privilege of previewing the issue for Power Line readers. Please think about subscribing here for the ridiculously low price of $19.95 and getting access to the whole shooting match online immediately in addition to home delivery of the hard copy at some »

Same-sex marriage is not the last frontier

Featured image Peter Wehner provides a good analysis of why public opinion has shifted so dramatically on same-sex marriage. This passage caught my eye: “once many Americans believed that the gay movement was de-radicalized and domesticated–much of the opposition to gay marriage began to dissipate.” Pete is right to attribute the shift in opinion in part to the perception that the gay movement is de-radicalized. He is also wise to speak of »

The Supreme Court is unlikely to uphold DOMA

Featured image Having listened on C-SPAN to the oral argument in the DOMA case, I believe the Supreme Court will hold DOMA unconstitutional if it reaches the merits. Presumably, the Court’s four liberal Justices would reach that conclusion. And Justice Kennedy seems ready to join them. Kennedy’s questioning of Paul Clement, who was defending DOMA on behalf of the House leadership, demonstrated considerable concern that DOMA constitutes an unwarranted intrusion by the »

Gay Marriage: The Libertarian Solution

Featured image The incomparable Iowahawk offers his solution to the gay marriage controversy over at  Get the government out of the marriage business entirely, and devolve it all to a matter of contract.  This would essentially “privatize” marriage in ways that gays might not like.  Let Iowahawk explain the nub of it: The solution? Maybe it’s time for government to get out of the whole marriage business altogether. Or at least »