Monday, April 14, 2014

Arguments opposing marriage equality, interracial marriage are VERY similar

No matter how many times the opponents of marriage equality say that their opposition is not similar to that of interracial marriage, reality always smacks them in the face

From the Salt Lake Tribune:

As the judge listened to the attorney explain the state’s interest in barring the couple from marrying, he had a question: Are you saying there is scientific evidence that shows some children will be harmed by such marriages? 

The question posed to R.D. McIlwaine III, assistant attorney general of Virginia, came from U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren on April 10, 1967.

The case, of course, was Loving v. Virginia, which ended bans on interracial marriage.

On Thursday, 47 years to the day after Warren posed his question, 10th Circuit Judge Jerome A. Holmes, who is black, brought the Loving case squarely into the same-sex marriage debate as he asked the attorney representing Utah, how is a line drawn on gender any different from one that divided races when it comes to the right to marry?

“You have a man who wants to marry another man, the only thing that bars him from getting married is sex, gender,” Holmes said. “So why is that any different than Loving when you are drawing a line that is based on a protected classification?”

Attorney Gene C. Schaerr has argued in court filings that a decision affirming U.S. District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby’s Dec. 20 ruling that the state’s ban is unconstitutional would be a “judicial wrecking ball” rather than “the Loving of our age.”

Schaerr told Holmes last week in Denver, that the difference was that the Loving decision didn’t “intrude into the state of Virginia’s definitional authority over marriage. The exclusion of mixed-race couples was a regulatory exclusion.” And it left intact man-woman marriage, he said.

“The whole presumption in Loving was talking about man-woman marriage,” he said, which is “fundamental to procreating and maintaining the human race.”

But from its inception, the Loving case was framed not around gender but race, and in language and principles that parallel those used today in the same-sex marriage debate: procreation, what’s best for children, what’s natural and traditional and what’s in keeping with God’s will.

Doesn't that last paragraph sound familiar to you? For the rest of this article, read Experts: Gay marriage opponents echo mixed-race arguments.

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