Gay rights victory in California


Beautiful. In a dramatic 4-3 decision, the California Supreme Court has overturned a state ban on gay marriage, a measure they rightly deem "unconstitutional." Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has also signalled that he will uphold the ruling and, admirably, "will not support an amendment to the constitution that would overturn this state Supreme Court ruling," according to the Sacramento Bee. Gay rights activists are celebrating, (also from the Bee):Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center For Lesbian Rights, a plaintiff in the suit, read part of the opinion, then looked up and told the crowd: "Every piece of statutory language that…excluded gays and lesbians is stricken," she said. "We are free to marry anyone."We can expect the predictable reactionary argument that the court has engaged in "judicial activism" (the definition of which seems to be "when judges rule in ways the Christian Right doesn't favor," in this case on the side of equal rights). Also, we'll be sure to hear from opponents that this ruling threatens the marriages of straight people everywhere, an argument that is never backed with evidence. Given that the divorce rate in America hovers at around 45% it seems to me that straight marriages are threatened regardless of whether gay marriages are authorized by the state. By what I can't say. I'm sure it's complicated. But, giving gay couples the right to publicly and officially declare their unions - their love for one another - would be a step towards upholding the sanctity of marriage - not the reverse.

In These Times August 2022 Cover
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