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U. S. Supremes Sidestep Massachusetts Same-Sex Marriage Issue 

By Virginia C. Armstrong, Ph.D., National Chairman

Dec. 1, 2004

Earlier this week, the U. S. Supreme Court refused to hear a challenge by pro-family groups to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court's order that Massachusetts legalize homosexual marriages. The U. S. Supremes did not explain why they refused to consider Goodridge & Others v. Department of Public Health & Another. The Goodridge decision strikes another judicial blow at morality and marriage and reasonableness. The Massachusetts Supremes' wrote an opinion fatally flawed in a number of ways:

  1. The Goodridge opinion shares several fatal flaws with Lawrence v. Texas (the 2003 U. S. Supreme Court decision throwing out state sodomy laws). Both cases:

    • virtually ignore public health, safety, and welfare and repudiate public morality as any grounds for a judicial decision;

    • refuse to recognize the future damage they will cause;

    • anchor their rulings in illegitimate and unreliable factual sources. To foreign law, the Goodridge court adds "contemporary values, societal consensus, scientists, and a prolonged period of observation of this new family structure (i.e., the same-sex marriage structure);"

    • reduce centuries of Judeo-Christian moral opposition to homosexuality to mere "hate" and "persistent prejudice"-the example of real hate in these cases.

  2. In addition to these fatal flaws, the Goodridge majority totally misconstrued the nature of "marriage."

    • The Court defined marriage as "the voluntary union of two persons as spouses, to the exclusion of all others." The Court agreed with the plaintiffs that "they seek only to be married, not to undermine the institution of civil marriage. They do not want marriage abolished." But the meaning of a word (i.e., "marriage") can be so transmogrified that what the original word represented is destroyed. The elder Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote that a word can be deprived of its essential meaning-which is its "life"-so that it is killed. This crime he labeled "verbicide." The Massachusetts Supremes have committed verbicide against "marriage."

    • The Court described marriage as "an evolving paradigm." But Anglo-American law, based on the Judeo-Christian value system, understands that marriage is one of the permanent primary social institutions which God has ordained for human society.

    • The Massachusetts Supremes held that "the government creates civil marriage." ". . . civil marriage is, and since pre-Colonial days has been, . . . a wholly secular institution." This repudiation of the religious origins of marriage is blatant and deadly.

  3. The Goodridge opinion effectively demolishes the U. S. Supreme Court's arguments that homosexual conduct and marriage are "private" matters. The state Supremes write that "there are three partners to every civil marriage: two willing spouses and an approving state." They also describe civil marriage as "a highly public celebration." A matter can hardly be described as "private" when the government and the public are parties to it.

The top judges of the United States and Massachusetts would do well to remember the words of Sir William Blackstone, whose influence on the American constitutional system has been immeasurable. Blackstone described sodomy as "the infamous crime against nature," as an offense of "deeper malignity" than rape, an heinous act "the very mention of which is a disgrace to human nature," and "a crime not fit to be named."

What Can You Do?

  • We the voters must inform our leaders during their holiday break that we do NOT support such unconstitutional and egregious decisions as Goodridge. We expect our leaders in 2005 to act quickly and effectively to protect Godly marriage through court-curbing laws, a tough Constitutional amendment, and appointment of Constitutionalist judges — especially to fill U. S. Supreme Court vacancies almost sure to occur.

  • We the voters must be continuously better informed. Subscribe now to the new Christian worldview publication, RARE JEWEL MAGAZINE. Information and subscriptions are available at www.blackstoneinstitute.org, click on "In the News." It's a great Christmas gift!


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