Thursday, May 15, 2008

California State Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Same-Sex Marriage!

On Thursday, May 15th 2008 at 10:00 AM PDT the Supreme Court of California ruled in favor of same-sex marriage in the State of California!!!

For a link to the full 172 page PDF text document of their ruling, click here

Some of my favorite excerpts from their ruling are:

"Under the strict scrutiny standard, unlike the rational basis standard, in order to demonstrate the constitutional validity of a challenged statutory classification the state must establish (1) that the state interest intended to be served by the differential treatment not only is a constitutionally legitimate interest, but is a compelling state interest, and (2) that the differential treatment not only is reasonably related to but is necessary to serve that compelling state interest. Applying this standard to the statutory classification here at issue, we conclude that the purpose underlying differential treatment of opposite-sex and same-sex couples embodied in California’s current marriage statutes — the interest in retaining the traditional and well-established definition of marriage — cannot properly be viewed as a compelling state interest for purposes of the equal protection clause, or as necessary to serve such an interest."

"A number of factors lead us to this conclusion. First, the exclusion of same-sex couples from the designation of marriage clearly is not necessary in order to afford full protection to all of the rights and benefits that currently are enjoyed by married opposite-sex couples; permitting same-sex couples access to the designation of marriage will not deprive opposite-sex couples of any rights and will not alter the legal framework of the institution of marriage, because same-sex couples who choose to marry will be subject to the same obligations and duties that currently are imposed on married opposite-sex couples. Second, retaining the traditional definition of marriage and affording same-sex couples only a separate and differently named family relationship will, as a realistic matter, impose appreciable harm on same-sex couples and their children, because denying such couples access to the familiar and highly favored designation of marriage is likely to cast doubt on whether the official family relationship of same-sex couples enjoys dignity equal to that of opposite-sex couples. Third, because of the widespread disparagement that gay individuals historically have faced, it is all the more probable that excluding same-sex couples from the legal institution of marriage is likely to be viewed as reflecting an official view that their committed relationships are of lesser stature than the comparable relationships of opposite-sex couples. Finally, retaining the designation of marriage exclusively for opposite-sex couples and providing only a separate and distinct designation for same-sex couples may well have the effect of perpetuating a more general premise — now emphatically rejected by this state — that gay individuals and same-sex couples are in some respects “second-class citizens” who may, under the law, be treated differently from, and less favorably than, heterosexual individuals or opposite-sex couples. Under these circumstances, we cannot find that retention of the traditional definition of marriage constitutes a compelling state interest. Accordingly, we conclude that to the extent the current California statutory provisions limit marriage to opposite-sex couples, these statutes are unconstitutional."

And the best part was
"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."

California here we come!!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Thursday, May 15, 2008 at 10:00 a.m. PDT

This is the date and time that the Supreme Court of California will issue it's ruling on the future status of same-sex marriage in the State of California.

The court heard oral arguments on 03-04-08 and had until June 2nd 2008 to issue it's ruling. It's interesting to note that they have accelerated their schedule and is a couple of days before the historic May 17th 2004 date when Massachusetts became the first State in our nation to issue civil marriage licenses to same-sex couples. This was after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling on November 18th 2003 that legalized same-sex marriage in that State.

We hope that the news is good and we can start having June weddings in California this year!!! Starting with ours! My partner and I have been together for twelve years and we are really looking forward to having our relationship legally recognized, even if it is just at the State level.

The sad news is that it looks like California will have an anti same-sex marriage Constitutional amendment on the November ballot. I just hope that society has progressed enough that the majority of voters vote against this hateful amendment to the Constitution.

Minority rights should never be put to a vote of the majority. Why do you think they call us a minority to begin with!