Tuesday, January 27, 2015

AL Chief Justice Roy Moore's anti-marriage equality statement more about bigotry and less about morality or ethics

Roy Moore
For all of the whining they do about alleged "activist judges," it looks like the religious right may have found one which will allow them to make an exception.

According to The New Civil Rights Movement:

 On Friday and Monday a federal judge struck down Alabama's ban on same-sex marriage in two separate cases, prompting state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore to issue a three-page declaration promising he will not observe the rulings.

  . . . "As Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, I will continue to recognize the Alabama Constitution and the will of the people overwhelmingly expressed in the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment," Moore wrote. "If we are to preserve that 'reverent morality which is our source of all beneficent progress in social and political improvement,' then we must act to oppose such tyranny!" he added.

In his letter, addressed to Alabama Republican Governor Robert Bentley, Moore warned "the destruction of that institution is upon us by federal courts using specious pretexts based on the Equal Protection, Due Process and Full Faith and Credit Clauses of the United States Constitution."
"I would advise," Moore added, that any marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples "would be in defiance of the laws and Constitution of Alabama," and claimed that the State of Alabama is not bound by decisions of federal district or appellate courts.

Moore also quoted the bible in his letter, Mark 10:6-9, which begins, "But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’

Now before anyone begins spouting righteous outrage and talk about how Moore should lose his job, I should inform that he once did. In 2003, he was removed as chief justice of Alabama for his refusal to obey a federal court order and remove a  2.6 ton stone monument of the Ten Commandments he had placed at the courthouse. In 2012, he was voted back in as Alabama's chief justice.

But before that infamous incident, there were other incidents which strongly indicated that Moore was prejudiced against the lgbt community.

In 2002, Lambda Legal filed a formal complaint  with the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission against Moore, claiming that he made "shockingly prejudiced statements against gay people in a recent legal opinion."

It was a case in which the Alabama Supreme Court had ruled that a heterosexual father of three children should have custody instead the mother, who was a lesbian and living in a domestic partnership in California.  The decision was written by another member of the court, but Moore felt the need to add his two cents:

Moore’s 35-page concurring opinion said Alabama, unlike California, does not recognize domestic partnerships. Instead, Alabama law makes homosexuality a crime.

"The effect of such a lifestyle upon children must not be ignored, and the lifestyle should never be tolerated," Moore wrote.

Throughout his opinion, Moore quoted scripture, historical documents and previous Alabama court rulings that he said backed his view.

"Homosexual conduct is, and has been, considered abhorrent, immoral, detestable, a crime against nature, and a violation of the laws of nature and of nature’s God upon which this nation and our laws are predicated. Such conduct violates both the criminal and civil laws of this state and is destructive to a basic building block of society—the family," Moore wrote.

Moore has also made other scurrilous comments about marriage equality including claiming that it is  "a Satanic influence that will lead to “oppressive” government and divine punishment."

I think it's safe to say that Moore's opinion in this matter doesn't come from logic or fairness, but an intense dislike of lgbts. Anyone thinking of following his ideas down a wormhole would do better to just let him go down alone with his own ship.

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