The Death of The Rule of Law in Alabama

From Public Discourse:

What is marriage law in Alabama now? What groups of people are entitled to receive a license? Are all of the marriages that have been contracted in the state of Alabama now unconstitutional? If not, then which ones are still valid? Must Alabama officials stop enforcing all of marriage’s legal protections for the rights of children, such as the presumption of paternity and presumptions of biological parental custody? After all, those incidents cannot apply equally to same-sex couples as to married couples.

What “rule of law” answers these fundamental questions? Judge Granade has now set herself up to be the chief probate officer in the state of Alabama. She has not defined marriage, and her failure to do so leaves state actors, especially probate judges, without a definition of the institution for which they are issuing state licenses. Worse, she has provided no legal standards—not even a limiting principle—to guide her administration of Alabama family law, which she has now taken upon herself. She will be rewriting the family laws of Alabama, piecemeal and arbitrarily, from her bench. Rather than conducting legislative hearings regarding the familial rights and duties related to the definition of marriage, Judge Granade will be conducting contempt proceedings in which she will decide on a case-by-case basis which actions of Alabama officials violate the Constitution and which do not.

If the rule of law is not already dead in Alabama, then it is seriously wounded indeed.

Read it all here


New Research on Same-Sex Households Reveals Kids Do Best With Mom and Dad

From Mark Regnerus at Public Discourse:

Published research employing the New Family Structures Study (NFSS), the ECLS (Early Childhood Longitudinal Study), the US Census (ACS), the Canadian Census, and now the NHIS all reveal a comparable basic narrative, namely, that children who grow up with a married mother and father fare best.

Read it all here

Federal Judge Violates Supreme Court Precedent

On Wednesday, yet another activist judge decided to impose his definition of marriage on an unwilling state, this time in Kentucky.

There’s so much nonsense in the ruling, like so many that have come before it, that it’s hard to know where to begin.

The federal “judge”, John Heyburn, dragged out all the same old canards. He repeated the completely nonsensical claim that marriage has nothing to do with procreation because not each and every married couple in America has a child (If all laws must correlate 100 percent with their aims in order to be rational, then we’re going to have to get rid of a lot more laws). And of course he invoked the phony Loving v. Virginia analogy.

But his most egregious move was to completely contradict the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor, while purportedly using that very decision as the basis for his irrational ruling.

The Supreme Court’s Windsor decision was an incoherent mess, but that isn’t why Heyburn chose to directly contradict its holdings. No, he claimed to be following the precedent while violating it.

In short, the essential holding of Windsor was that it is the states’ prerogative to define marriage, not the federal government. Following the precedent would have required Heyburn (himself acting as part of the federal government) to uphold Kentucky’s legal definition of marriage. But the “judge” ruled just the opposite. He threw out the state’s definition, supposedly on the basis of Windsor. Eric Holder’s DOJ is doing the same thing. So we have federal officials overturning state definitions based on a Supreme Court ruling that said it’s the states, not the feds, who have the power to define marriage. It’s all really just Orwellian.

None of it is based on reason, on the law, or on the Constitution. The “progressive” elites of our society want marriage to be redefined, so they can preen about how “tolerant” and “progressive” they are, and so it shall be done, by any means necessary. Nothing like the rule of law or respect for representative government is going to stop these people.

Friendship Licenses

The government does not hand out “friendship” licenses, … They give out marriage licenses.

Read more…

The Legal Circus That Killed Proposition 8

The process that killed Prop 8 in California should concern anyone who cares about democracy and the rule of law. The cheaters won.

The Legal Circus That Killed Proposition 8

On Marriage, Inevitability Is a Choice We Can Reject

From the Heritage Foundation blog:

“…no one can deny that Americans’ support for marriage is not what it once was. This is largely because we have done an insufficient job of explaining what marriage is, why marriage matters, and what the consequences will be if we redefine marriage.

To fill this void, we have worked with our allies at the Alliance Defending Freedom, the Family Research Council, and the National Organization for Marriage to produce an easy to read pamphlet to explain why marriage matters in everyday language. Download a free e-book version today at”

Excellent Rebuttal to Marriage-Deniers

NY Times columnist Ross Douthat has a great rebuttal to the absurd charge that opponents of “same-sex marriage” invented a connection between marriage and procreation as a ploy to thwart the redefinition of marriage – Marriage, Procreation and Historical Amnesia

…of course that essential connection was assumed in Western law and culture long before gay marriage emerged as a controversy or a cause. You don’t have to look very hard to find quotes (like the ones collected in this Heritage Foundation brief) from jurists, scholars, anthropologists and others, writing in historical contexts entirely removed from the gay marriage debate, making the case that “the first purpose of matrimony, by the laws of nature and society, is procreation” (that’s a California Supreme Court ruling in 1859), describing the institution of marriage as one “founded in nature, but modified by civil society: the one directing man to continue and multiply his species, the other prescribing the manner in which that natural impulse must be confined and regulated” (that’s William Blackstone), and acknowledging that “it is through children alone that sexual relations become important to society, and worthy to be taken cognizance of by a legal institution” (that’s the well-known reactionary Bertrand Russell).

The primary reason advocates of redefining marriage must deny the obvious truth is simply that accepting the essential male-female nature of marriage makes their position incoherent at its roots. It’s as obvious as any fact can be that male-female sexual relationships play a role in society that is unique; it’s no accident or mere coincidence that human societies all over the world, throughout human history, have set apart male-female sexual relationships in both law and custom. But any acknowledgment of this simple truth opens the door to continue making legal distinctions, and so the truth must be subverted to ideology and political correctness.

But it also had to be denied for pragmatic reasons, because the first victories in redefining marriage were via the courts, and since the unique role of male-female unions in society easily and obviously provides a “rational basis” for unique treatment in the law, activist judges had to deny the obvious truth in order to leave themselves a thin veneer of legalese under which to impose their preferred policy. So, in Orwellian fashion, they simply declared the truth to be irrational and therefore illegal.

It’s impossible to know for certain, but had judges simply adhered to the written law they swore to uphold, to precedent, and to basic logic, they would have consistently ruled that there is plenty rational basis to define marriage as it’s always been defined, as male-female, and the movement to redefine marriage would have likely been stopped in its infancy years ago. Unfortunately, that’s not the legal system we live under now.

UPDATE: Part 2 of 3 – Culture, Class and the Decline of Marriage

UPDATE: Part 3 of 3 – Marriage and Historical Inevitability

Ten Questions for the White House

Bill Kristol at The Weekly Standard asks Ten Questions for the White House

All good questions. And it pretty much goes without saying that the DeMSM would be camped out on every Republican office-holder’s doorstep if this incident had occurred under a Republican administration.

Aren’t there any “reporters” at all the media outlets besides Fox News who are embarrassed to so completely fail at just doing their jobs? Are they so blatantly partisan that their bias completely overcomes the most basic professionalism? Obviously, at this point these are entirely rhetorical questions.

Marriage = Biology (Not Bigotry)

Here is a really excellent video from the National Organization for Marriage, effectively making the case for society’s interest in promoting natural marriage over other types of relationships. Watch and forward:

When is Harry Reid going to resign his leadership position?

Remember back in 2002, when Senator Trent Lott said this at a birthday celebration for Strom Thurmond? —

I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.

Mr. Lott eventually lost his position as Senate Minority Leader as a result of his comments. No need to rehash that whole controversy, but it’s clear that Lott was just engaging in some empty flattery of an old man on his birthday, not making a policy statement. But most important, there was nothing malicious about his comments. They weren’t directed at anyone with the intent to harm them.

Now contrast Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. In August, Reid had an interview with The Huffington Post

“His poor father must be so embarrassed about his son,” Reid said, in reference to George Romney’s standard-setting decision to turn over 12 years of tax returns when he ran for president in the late 1960s.

Saying he had “no problem with somebody being really, really wealthy,” Reid sat up in his chair a bit before stirring the pot further. A month or so ago, he said, a person who had invested with Bain Capital called his office.

“Harry, he didn’t pay any taxes for 10 years,” Reid recounted the person as saying.

“He didn’t pay taxes for 10 years! Now, do I know that that’s true? Well, I’m not certain,” said Reid. “But obviously he can’t release those tax returns. How would it look?

“You guys have said his wealth is $250 million,” Reid went on. “Not a chance in the world. It’s a lot more than that. I mean, you do pretty well if you don’t pay taxes for 10 years when you’re making millions and millions of dollars.”

This is obviously not at all like some happy talk at a birthday party. It’s far worse than what Lott said, because it is a deliberately malicious attack, a slander designed to harm another person’s reputation.

So this raises the question, when is Harry Reid going to give up his leadership position in the U.S. Senate? Surely all the senators who called for Lott’s head cannot stand idly by and let this slander go without any cost. If Republican Senators had some brass, and some political skill, they would make an issue of it.

And surely the mainstream media, that bastion of objectivity, cannot let such a blatant double standard go unreported. When does the media feeding frenzy against Harry Reid, demanding his resignation, begin? We didn’t see anything of the kind on the Sunday shows this morning. Maybe next week…