By the Bizarre Logic of Anti-Gay Marriage Zealots, the Supreme Court Should Allow Businesses to Discriminate Against Interracial Couples
by Robert McWhirter
If we say religious freedom allows someone to discriminate against same-sex marriage, then we take a step back to allow any discrimination for any sincere religious belief.
SOURCE: Live Science
Same-Sex Marriage in History
What the Supreme Court Missed
OAH Amicus Brief Filed in Same-Sex Marriage Case
Written by OAH member George Chauncey, professor of history and American studies at Yale University, the brief focuses on the history of discrimination against gays.
In Same-Sex Marriage Calculation, Justices May See Golden Ratio
“Historically, there seems to be a tipping point at which the justices seem more comfortable setting aside state practices. When only a third of the states still retain a practice, the court seems ready to act.”
SOURCE: Ohio State University
The Road to Same-Sex Marriage: Lesbian Mothers, Gay Fathers, and the American Family
by Daniel Winunwe Rivers
While marriage was the ostensible issue in the Supreme Court ruling that overturned the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, the question of children and their parents was at the very heart of the case.
SOURCE: Jacksonville Journal Courier (IL)
Keep Religious Beliefs Out of State Laws
by Steve Hochstadt
Same-sex marriage opponents in Illinois are literally out of ideas.
Chris Christie Ahead of the GOP Curve on Same-Sex Marriage
by Julian Zelizer
Even among Republicans, the progress on same-sex marriage has been rapid.
Some States are Still Denying Benefits to Same-Sex Military Couples
by Rawn James, Jr.
But it's a pointless piece of political theater -- gay marriage is now backed by the Pentagon.
SOURCE: Pink News
California: 95-year-old war veteran marries boyfriend of 20 years
John Banvard, 95, tied the knot with Gerard Nadea, 68, himself a Vietnam veteran.
SOURCE: Inside Higher Ed
Steven Mintz: DOMA Ruling Proves History Still Matters
Steven Mintz, professor of history at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of Domestic Revolutions: A Social History of American Family Life and Huck’s Raft: A History of American Childhood, signed the American Historical Association brief.At a time when many question the relevance of history, it is noteworthy that the U.S. Supreme Court case that prohibited the federal government from undercutting a state’s decision to extend "the recognition, dignity and protection" of marriage to same-sex couples, hinged on arguments advanced by professional historians.Rarely have historians played as important a role in shaping the outcome of a public controversy as in the same-sex marriage cases. Legal, family, women's, and lesbian and gay historians provided key evidence on which U.S. v. Windsor ultimately turned: that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) represented an unprecedented and improper federal intrusion into a domain historically belonging to the states. As Justice Kennedy affirmed, "the federal government, through our history, has deferred to state law policy decisions with respect to domestic relations."
AHA Amicus Brief Ignores Radical Queer History
by Steven Maynard
The perspective on the history and politics of same-sex marriage crystallized in the AHA amicus brief both reflects and helps to reproduce a much broader and worrying process: the narrowing of the queer political field to variants of liberalism such that a left critique becomes increasingly difficult to voice.
Mary L. Dudziak: Windsor: LGBT version of Reed v. Reed?
Mary L. Dudziak is the Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law at Emory University. She is the author of War Time: An Idea, Its History, Its Consequences, and Exporting American Dreams: Thurgood Marshall's African Journey
George Chauncey: The Long Road to Marriage Equality
George Chauncey, a professor of history and American studies at Yale, was an expert witness in both same-sex marriage cases decided Wednesday.NEW HAVEN — THE Supreme Court’s soaring decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional is a civil rights landmark, but the history leading up to it is poorly understood. Marriage equality was neither inevitable nor, until recently, even conceivable. And the struggle to secure it was not, as is commonly believed, a natural consequence of the gay liberation movement that gained steam in the late 1960s.It was not until the 1980s that securing legal recognition for same-sex relationships became an urgent concern of lesbians and gay men. In the 1950s, such recognition was almost unimaginable. Then, most states criminalized gay people’s sexual intimacy. Newspaper headlines blared the State Department’s purge of homosexual employees during the McCarthy-era “lavender scare.” Police cracked down on lesbian and gay bars and other alleged “breeding grounds” of homosexuality.
Committee on LGBT History: We Are Proud Historians Helped Make DOMA/Prop. 8 Decisions Possible
Don Romesburg, associate professor in the Sonoma State University women's and gender studies department, released this statement on behalf of the Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History, which he co-chairs:
Historians Played Important Role in DOMA Decision
by David Austin Walsh
Image via Shutterstock.The Supreme Court's decision released Wednesday morning to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act in Windsor v. United States upheld upon arguments made by historians in an amicus brief filed by the American Historical Association.The majority opinion acknowledges that “[b]y history and tradition, the definition and regulation of marriage has been treated as being within the authority and realm of the separate States.”This mirrors language in the brief filed by twenty-three historians of marriage, sexuality, and constitutional law, which stated in its introduction that “[c]ontrol of marital status is reserved to the states in our federal system. Marriage has always been understood as a civil contract embodying a couple’s free consent to join in long-lasting intimate and economic union.”
Peter Dreier: Is the Supreme Court Going to Settle for "States' Rights" on Same-Sex Marriage?
Peter Dreier is professor of politics and chair of the Urban and Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College. His new book, "The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century: A Social Justice Hall of Fame," was just published by Nation Books.Should the states decide whether black Americans can marry white Americans?Today that idea seems absurd. Most Americans believe that states shouldn't be allowed to trample the basic right of interracial couples to marry - even if a majority of people in a state want to do so. It would be unfair - a clear violation of equal rights. That's one reason we have a federal government.In 1967, in Loving v. Virginia, the nation's highest court knocked down state anti-miscegenation laws.Now the nation - and the Supreme Court - confront a very similar situation, only this time the issue is same-sex marriage.
SOURCE: Marriage Equality Amendment
Andrew Meyer: Answering Scalia's Question
Andrew Seth Meyer is associate professor of history at Brooklyn College.During oral arguments over the repeal of Proposition 8, Justice Antonin Scalia asked the following question of Ted Olson, one of the attorney's arguing for the repeal: "I’m curious, when—when did—when did it become unconstitutional to exclude homosexual couples from marriage? 1791? 1868, when the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted?" Mr. Olson's answer was rather labored and tentative. To paraphrase his reply, he asserted that this change had happened at some indeterminable point when society realized that sexual orientation is not a matter of choice. Not being a lawyer, I am not aware of the possible legal reasons behind Mr. Olson's evasiveness. Still, I can not help expressing dissatisfaction with this answer.
David George Haskell: Nature’s Case for Same-Sex Marriage
David George Haskell, a professor of biology at Sewanee: The University of the South, is the author of “The Forest Unseen: A Year’s Watch in Nature.”BIOLOGY has returned to the nation’s highest court. It’s not Darwin’s theory of evolution on the docket this time, but the nature of sex. Defenders of Proposition 8, California’s ban on gay marriage, base their case on what they call the “objective biological fact” that procreation is an exclusively heterosexual process. Citing the 18th-century English jurist William Blackstone, they argue that marriage should be “founded in nature.”
SOURCE: The Nation
Melissa Harris-Perry: What Difference Will Same-Sex Marriage Make?
Melissa Harris-Perry is professor of political science at Tulane University, where she is founding director of the Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South. She is author of Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America. She is also a contributor to MSNBC.In his essay “Message in the Stars,” the American Presbyterian writer and theologian Frederick Buechner conducts a thought experiment. What if God decided to prove—dramatically, irrefutably and publicly—that God does exist by writing across the night sky. Buechner imagines the heavenly author arranging the stars to read—GOD IS—and the subsequent hope, terror, regret, joy and utter astonishment that such a message would bring. He fantasizes that God would write the message in all the different languages of the world, so that on any given night one might go outside, look up and see, in French, Mandarin or Arabic: GOD IS.He invites us to envision the sense of relief that would come with the utter certainty that God exists. Then he imagines this:
David Cole: Deciding Not to Decide Gay Marriage
David Cole is a professor of law at Georgetown University.THE Supreme Court will begin hearing two days of oral arguments today on the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the 2008 initiative that banned same-sex marriage in California, and on the Defense of Marriage Act, the 1996 law that forbids federal recognition of same-sex marriage.DOMA poses easier legal issues. The statute, which President Obama believes is unconstitutional and which has been repudiated by Bill Clinton, who signed it, inserted the federal government into marriage law, historically the domain of the states. It was clearly driven by antigay animus, and as lower courts have ruled, there simply is no good reason for Congress to refuse to treat all state-recognized marriages equally.
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