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Category Archives: Supreme Court

Warning from Canada: Do Not Redefine Marriage

Many same-sex marriage advocates continue to falsely present the redefinition of marriage as simply providing respect and recognition to loving same-sex couples, with no consequences for anyone else. But as we have seen with the frequent attacks against supporters of traditional marriage - bakers, florists, and others - this has already been proven to be false. To get a fuller exposition of the consequences of redefining marriage, we only have to look at what has happened with our northern neighbor.

Mid adult couple holding their childrenThe article from Dawn Stefanowicz is not the first such warning we’ve had. In 2012, the backers of the proposed marriage amendment in Minnesota held a day-long seminal featuring many speakers from Canada, including a prominent Archbishop, who detailed the 300 plus cases of supporters of marriage being punished, and the constant pressure of the government to push this radical understanding of marriage on children. Dawn Stefanowicz uses Canada’s decline due to legalizing same-sex marriage as an all too apt example of what kind of fire the United States is playing with today:

We have great compassion for people who struggle with their sexuality and gender identity—not animosity. And we love our parents. Yet, when we go public with our stories, we often face ostracism, silencing, and threats.

I want to warn America to expect severe erosion of First Amendment freedoms if the US Supreme Court mandates same-sex marriage. The consequences have played out in Canada for ten years now, and they are truly Orwellian in nature and scope.

. . .

In Canada, freedoms of speech, press, religion, and association have suffered greatly due to government pressure. The debate over same-sex marriage that is taking place in the United States could not legally exist in Canada today. Because of legal restrictions on speech, if you say or write anything considered “homophobic” (including, by definition, anything questioning same-sex marriage), you could face discipline, termination of employment, or prosecution by the government.

She continues to warn Americans that a federal redefinition of marriage will authorize the “State as Ultimate Arbiter of parenthood”:

Over and over, we are told that “permitting same-sex couples access to the designation of marriage will not deprive anyone of any rights.” That is a lie.

When same-sex marriage was legalized in Canada in 2005, parenting was immediately redefined. Canada’s gay marriage law, Bill C-38, included a provision to erase the term “natural parent” and replace it across the board with gender-neutral “legal parent” in federal law. Now all children only have “legal parents,” as defined by the state. By legally erasing biological parenthood in this way, the state ignores children’s foremost right: their immutable, intrinsic yearning to know and be raised by their own biological parents.

. . .

In effect, same-sex marriage not only deprives children of their own rights to natural parentage, it gives the state the power to override the autonomy of biological parents, which means parental rights are usurped by the government.

In addition, the rights and freedom that made our nation a land of liberty will too be disregarded if same-sex marriage is legalized:

In Canada, it is considered discriminatory to say that marriage is between a man and a woman or that every child should know and be raised by his or her biological married parents. It is not just politically incorrect in Canada to say so; you can be saddled with tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees, fined, and forced to take sensitivity training.

Anyone who is offended by something you have said or written can make a complaint to the Human Rights Commissions and Tribunals. In Canada, these organizations police speech, penalizing citizens for any expression deemed in opposition to particular sexual behaviors or protected groups identified under “sexual orientation.” It takes only one complaint against a person to be brought before the tribunal, costing the defendant tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees. The commissions have the power to enter private residences and remove all items pertinent to their investigations, checking for hate speech.

. . .

It means that no matter what you believe, the government will be free to regulate your speech, your writing, your associations, and whether or not you may express your conscience. Americans also need to understand that the endgame for some in the LGBT rights movement involves centralized state power—and the end of First Amendment freedoms.

Many more issues will occur if the Supreme Court decides to redefine marriage. We recognize the flagrant lies that are told, the false “tolerance” that is being promulgated, the egregious attacks on our liberties. Our neighbor Canada knows these first-hand as well, even to a more frightening degree. We must never give up the fight for marriage, because if marriage is redefined, we know that first amendments rights will also be “redefined.”

Read the full article at The Public Discourse.

Justice Ginsburg’s Bias

In another display of judicial arrogance and bias, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg once again officiated at a same-sex ‘wedding’ over the weekend, this time perhaps hinting that the Court will find that such ‘marriages’ are required by the Constitution.

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As reported by New York Times, Ginsburg did not clarify why she emphasized the word “constitution” in her remarks. Perhaps she was expressing her own view – which she has improperly telegraphed for months. It is this kind of behavior that seriously calls into question the impartiality of a judge that requires her to remove herself from voting on the marriage case. As legal expert Ed Whelan noted yesterday in a post at NRO’s Bench Memos, her refusal to do so is why “no one should be expected to regard as legitimate a Supreme Court decision inventing a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.”

Wearing her black robe with her signature white lace collar, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg presided over the marriage on Sunday afternoon of Michael Kahn, the longtime artistic director of the Shakespeare Theater Company in Washington, and Charles Mitchem, who works at an architecture firm in New York.

. . .

But the most glittering moment for the crowd came during the ceremony. With a sly look and special emphasis on the word “Constitution,” Justice Ginsburg said that she was pronouncing the two men married by the powers vested in her by the Constitution of the United States.

No one was sure if she was emphasizing her own beliefs or giving a hint to the outcome of the case the Supreme Court is considering whether to decide if same-sex marriage is constitutional.

The foundation of the United States judicial system is that the judge is to be unbiased in opinion, and should only consider the facts of a case. However, as “the groom and groom strolled down the aisle to the mellow strains of “Mr. Sandman,” Justice Ginsburg demonstrated that she holds a biased opinion with regards to same-sex marriage. While in the midst of a court decision that could change the fabric of America, it will be hard to trust a decision issued by a Justice who cannot refrain from publicly exemplifying their impartiality when it comes to the definition of marriage.

All States Should Take Texas’ Lead

Texas is taking a strong stance to protect their State’s right to define marriage, regardless of what ruling the Supreme Court issues:

State lawmakers are considering at least five bills designed to block same-sex marriages, which are currently illegal in the state, and some state leaders say they’ll battle to bar the unions regardless of any Supreme Court decision.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott released a statement reaffirming his opposition to same-sex marriage. He said, “Texans — not unelected federal judges — should decide this important issue for their state.”

A Texas state representative backs this judicial move with several historical precedences. In addition to Texas, Alabama, Michigan, and Louisiana are also taking a stance:

ThinkstockPhotos-126425189In Louisiana, lawmakers are studying the “Marriage and Conscience Act,” which, if passed, would allow employers to deny same-sex spouses marriage benefits and give state contractors the right to refuse to hire gays and lesbians who marry.

“As the fight for religious liberty moves to Louisiana, I have a clear message for any corporation that contemplates bullying our state: Save your breath,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a Republican, wrote in The New York Times.

These states are holding up the right of not only their citizens, but also the right of the State to not be dismissed by unelected officials in the federal government.

In 2005, Texas voters passed a referendum banning same-sex marriages. A federal judge last year ruled the ban unconstitutional but issued a stay on his ruling as the issue moved through higher courts.

The fact that the Supreme Court is considering cases from Ohio, Tennessee, Michigan and Kentucky but not Texas should preclude state officials here from automatically following any decision from the highest court, said Jonathan Saenz, president of Texas Values, which opposes same-sex marriages.

The people’s will, proved through the 2005 referendum, outweighs any decisions by a federal court, he said. One of his bills would bar public funding to license or recognize the marriages of gay and lesbian couples, regardless of any Supreme Court ruling. As of late Monday (May 11), the bill appeared to have a majority of support in the state House.

Leading by example is one of the highest and effective forms of leadership, and Texas is proving that their ideals and their government truly are led by the people. All states and all citizens should take up the American cause to give the power back to the people, and let the states decide their own fates.

“The sovereignty of states is not something to be taken lightly,” Bell said. “It’s something intended by the framers of our Constitution.”

Source and quotes via Religion News.

Corrections: Where the Same-Sex Advocates Got It Wrong

In an article recently posted on The Public Discourse, James Phillips, an assistant professor of law at Brigham Young University, highlights and responds to errors made by pro-same-sex marriage justices Kennedy and Sotomayor. Phillips points out that there were 6 major errors in logic, precedent, and history made to support the passing of a same-sex marriage bill last week.

This post will outline these 6 errors, as well as the arguments against them.

Error #1: Massachusetts Marriage Rates Have Stayed the Same

Justice Sotomayor claimed that Massachusetts’ heterosexual marriage rates have remained constant since the state allowed same-sex marriage. If she had paid attention to an opposing amicus brief filed by 100 Scholars of Marriage, she would have seen that data clearly tells us otherwise, for instance:

Marriage rates have dropped by 8.9 percent since the state [MA] redefined marriage. And Massachusetts is not alone. The marriage scholars were also able to obtain data on opposite-sex marriage rates from three other states that have legalized same-sex marriage… Vermont (-5.1 percent), Connecticut (-7.3 percent), and Iowa (-9.2 percent).

ThinkstockPhotos-131579672Error #2: Because Some Men Leave Their Wives and Children, Marriage Does Not Help Keep Fathers Around

Justice Sotomayer argued that marriage between a man and a woman doesn’t actually increase the likelihood of creating a stable family life:

‘Marriage doesn’t do that on any level. How many married couples do fathers with the benefits or the requirements of marriage walk away from their children? So it’s not that the institution alone does it and that without it that father is going to stay in marriage.’

But as Phillips points out:

This is a classic example of the exception fallacy. Of course some men and women walk away from their marriage and their children. But that is the exception, not the rule, and it is certainly counter to the social norm of marriage.

Error #3: The Purpose of States’ Recognizing and Regulating Marriage is to Bestow Dignity on Couples

When Mr. Bursch brought forth the argument that the states are not in the marriage business to bestow dignity, Justice Kennedy expressed surprise at this, stating that he believed that whole purpose of “traditional marriage” was to bestow dignity on both man and woman. Now same-sex couples want that same “ennoblement.” But as Phillips explains:

Justice Kennedy was missing the point. He was confusing the reason that a couple may desire to be married with the reason that a state would want to recognize and regulate marriage. Those are distinct.

Even assuming, for the sake of argument, that states were interested in bestowing dignity on couples by allowing them to marry, that would be a means to enticing couples to marry. The end or purpose of encouraging marriage in this way would still be the fact that society—particularly children—benefits when men and women marry. It makes no sense for the state to go through the trouble and expense to regulate and subsidize marriage if the state gets nothing out of it in return—and it’s not simply about bestowing dignity on consenting adult love of all sizes and shapes.

Error #4: The Only Harm to Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Is Making Marriage More Adult-Centered

ThinkstockPhotos-465562267When several justices struggled to comprehend how redefining marriage to genderless terms would impact and harm the institution of marriage, Mr. Bursch correctly, but incompletely, argued how it would change the focus of marriage from fulfilling the needs of children to fulfilling the desires adults. If marriage is redefined, then the norm of fulfilling a child’s need to be raised by a man and a woman in order to learn how necessary interactions from each one, would be eliminated. And this is only one effect.

Error #5: There Is a Parallel between: Brown/Loving and Lawrence/Obergefell

The time between the Supreme Court decision calling for desegregation of elementary schools, the famous Brown v. Board of Education, and the decision invalidating state laws that prohibited mixed-race marriages (Loving v. Virginia), was thirteen years.

But man-woman marriage has been the law in every state since the birth of the nation—and in every Western nation for millennia. As Justice Kennedy put it, “I don’t even know how to count the decimals when we talk about millennia.

Not all thirteen year periods are equivalent. They certainly are not here.

Error #6: Age Restrictions on Marriage Are Equivalent to the Definitional Element of One Man and One Woman

Several justices tried to form the analogy of recognizing exceptions to age restrictions to recognizing same-sex marriages. But as Phillips explained:

Not all exceptions are equal. Age has never been a part of the definition of marriage... There are two historical and universal components to the definition of marriage in the United States, and in the Western world: gender diversity and only two spouses, one man and one woman. All other features—age, race, religion, coverture, dowry—are not part of the fundamental definition.

The American people want our justices to base their decisions on facts, and not make such errors in their decision as outlined here. Since the citizens of the United States will have to live with this decision for the entirety of America’s future, it would be best if such a decision had a basis in not only what the public wants, but also the truth of such matters.

Source via The Public Discourse

Same-Sex Marriage: Not a Constitutional Right

The collective wisdom and experience of the human race teaches us that marriage between one man and one woman is the foundation of a vibrant, self-sustaining society. - Ken Connelly 

ThinkstockPhotos-178371055In a recent opinion piece on CNSnews, Alliance Defending Freedom's Ken Connelly coherently outlines why same-sex marriage is not a constitutional right, as well as why the state, up until the 21st century, has supported marriage as a union that can only take place between one man and one woman.

Same-sex marriage is not a fundamental constitutional right. Each and every time the Supreme Court has spoken of the fundamental right to marry, it has done so with the clear understanding that marriage is the relationship of husband and wife. Furthermore, to establish that a right is fundamental from a constitutional perspective, the Supreme Court has required that it be deeply rooted in the nation’s history, a requirement that the proponents of same-sex marriage obviously cannot satisfy.

Man-woman marriage laws are not a violation of equal protection, either. That constitutional doctrine requires the government to treat similar groups similarly. But same-sex couples are not similarly situated to opposite-sex couples with respect to the state’s main reason for being involved in marriage, which is the creation and rearing of children. A man and woman can naturally create children and provide those children with both a mother and a father—same-sex couples cannot. Thus there is no constitutional requirement that they be treated the same in this context.

ThinkstockPhotos-492544249No matter what one’s conclusion as to the propriety of redefining marriage, it must be said that the resolution of this issue by direct political participation is proper in a democratic republic like ours. For as the Supreme Court recently reaffirmed in Windsor, the states, and by extension the people in those states, have the “essential authority to define the marital relation.”

This clear guidance from the Supreme Court as to the centrality of the people’s will on this issue has not stopped proponents of same-sex marriage from seeking to skip the debate and the legislative process entirely, opting rather to redefine marriage through the courts instead. Unfortunately, many lower federal courts have erroneously concluded that Windsor established a constitutional right to same-sex marriage. In so doing, these courts have usurped the right of the people to govern themselves.

The full piece is available here. As Connelly has noted, same-sex marriage proponents do not care what marriage truly is, nor do they care about what is best for children. Same-sex marriage is a blatant attack on the family, and an outright affront to American liberties. Strip marriage of the man-woman definition, and you strip all children of an equal chance at a stable family. Try to control the American people’s conscience, and you will see the fighting spirit that built this nation.

Whenever same-sex marriage activists try to shut down debate, or silence opposition, take heart: their violent actions are a testimony to the truth that marriage can only be between a man and a woman.

ICYMI: Supreme Court Oral Arguments on Marriage

ThinkstockPhotos-167195559If you were unable to listen to the arguments brought before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, below is a recording, as well as a link to the transcripts of the articles that were brought forward.

No matter the outcome, the truth about marriage cannot be changed.

Please keep up your prayers and remember that the fight is far from over! As long as there are men and women willing to fight to protect marriage and religious liberty, there will always be hope.

NOM Encouraged by Supreme Court Arguments; Demands That Justices Uphold Marriage As One Man, One Woman

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 28, 2015

Contact: Paul Bothwell (703) 474-6142 [email protected]


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Washington, DC — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's largest organization dedicated solely to preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman, today said they were encouraged by the probing questions from the justices and demanded that the Supreme Court find that laws defining marriage as only the union of one man and one woman are fully constitutional. NOM's Chairman, John Eastman, attended the arguments.

"I am extremely encouraged by the questioning, especially from Justice Kennedy, because it focused on what marriage is," said John Eastman, Chairman of NOM. "It shows that the justices realize that marriage has existed for millennia and they have no constitutional basis to redefine it."

Over 50 million Americans have cast ballots in 35 states in support of preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Over sixty percent of the electorate in those states voted in favor of traditional marriage. Additionally, numerous state legislatures have acted to define marriage only as the union of one man and one woman. Yet these decisions have been undermined in a series of lower federal court decisions that seek to impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation, despite the preferences of voters and their elected officials.

"The entire spectacle of the same-sex marriage litigation has undermined confidence in the judicial system as activist federal judges around the nation have taken it upon themselves to substitute their own views for the sovereign right of states, expressed through their voters and elected officials, to decide this issue," Eastman said. "We call upon the US Supreme Court to put an end to this judicial tyranny by ruling forthrightly that there is nothing in the US constitution that prevents states from defining marriage in the law as it has existed in reality for millennia — the union of one man and one woman."

NOM filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court urging the justices to uphold traditional marriage laws.

Eastman noted that Justice Kennedy's questioning revealed empathy to claims of discrimination against gays and lesbians as a violation of their human dignity, but that does not mean that he will find that traditional marriage laws discriminate.

"Society has many ways to support the dignity of all its citizens, including gays and lesbians, without redefining marriage," said Eastman. "The Supreme Court does not have the power to change an institution like marriage, which has predated government itself and has always existed to bring the two halves of humanity together to provide the ideal environment for raising children. Marriage is not discriminatory, it is unitive and life-giving, and must be preserved."

The Supreme Court also heard argument on a lesser but still important question of whether states must treat as valid same-sex 'marriages' performed in another state even if their own state does not allow for someone to marry a person of the same-sex.

"A number of justices clearly recognize that forcing states to recognize marriages performed elsewhere that are against their policy risks the result of a single state being able to impose their policy across the country," Eastman said. "States have the right to decide what marriages they will recognize as valid and that right should be respected."

Eastman concluded: "Nobody can safely predict the outcome of a case like this on the basis of oral argument, but we are encouraged that the justices understand what is at stake — upending an institution that has served society well for millennia — and are hopeful that they will find that the constitution does not prevent traditional marriage laws. In doing so, they will restore to the people the power to decide the issue of marriage."

To schedule an interview with John Eastman, NOM's Chairman, or Brian Brown, NOM’s president, contact Paul Bothwell, [email protected], (703) 474-6142.

Does the Definition of Marriage Matter? Ask the Children

As the Supreme Court decision on marriage continues this week, it is important to remember the group that will be most affected by this decision: our children.

ThinkstockPhotos-471500304Even those who are not married and/or have no children, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, have a stake in this battle, as each child is a future adult who will eventually have a hand in choosing the path of our nation and culture.

So what happens to children if we tell them that gender doesn’t matter? That they don’t need a mother and a father? That children raised by same-sex couples are no worse off than children raised by heterosexual couples? Brandi Walton, who grew up as an only child in a same-sex household, can tell us exactly what happens:

ThinkstockPhotos-57435315I knew from a young age that living with two women was not natural. I could especially see it in the homes of my friends who had a mom and a dad. I spent as much time with those friends as I possibly could. I yearned for the affection that my friends received from their dads. I wanted to know what it was like to be held and cherished by a man, what it was like to live with one from day to day.

As far as I was concerned, I already had one mother; I did not need another. My dream was that my mother would decide she wanted to be with men again, but obviously that dream did not come true. My grandfathers and uncles did the best they could when it came to spending time with me and doing all the daddy-daughter stuff, but it was not the same as having a full-time father, and I knew it. It always felt secondhand.

Growing up without the presence of a man in my home damaged me personally.

...As an adult, I have tried to talk to my mom about how difficult my life was, but she simply cannot relate because she was raised by a mom and a dad. As a child, I would not have spoken out about the way I was being raised, either. I love my mom. She was the center of my universe and the thought of saying something to outsiders that would have hurt her devastated me. Writing this letter right this very moment is devastating me.

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While adults are clamoring for the definition of marriage to be fundamentally altered, their children are silently crying out for a mother and father. The beautiful innocence of children allows them to see the world with clarity: children don’t care about politics; they don’t care about ethnicity; they don’t care what any judge, politician, or world leader tells them. Children just want their mom and dad.

This Supreme Court decision is not about liberals vs. conservatives, Republicans vs. Democrats, or even about gender: it is about children. Every child deserves to be raised by their mother and their father, and no adult has the right to deny a child either one.

Whatever the Supreme Court decides, one thing is certain: there will always be men and women who will fight to protect the true definition of marriage, and the family: one man and one woman, who together, bring children into this world.

National Organization for Marriage officials Available to Media Following US Supreme Court Same-Sex Marriage Arguments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 27, 2015

Contact: Paul Bothwell (703) 474-6142 [email protected]


nom_logo Washington, DC. — Top officials from the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation’s largest organization devoted to preserving traditional marriage, will be available on April 28th immediately following the conclusion of oral arguments presented to the US Supreme Court on the constitutionality of state laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. NOM led campaigns for traditional marriage laws in numerous states and filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court urging them to uphold marriage.

 Brian Brown, President National Organization for MarriageWHEN:Tuesday, April 27, 2015WHERE:Washington, DC

WHO: John Eastman, Chairman National Organization for Marriage

To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, please contact Paul Bothwell, [email protected], (703) 474-6142.

NOM Announces Speakers and Special Guests for 2015 March for Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 24, 2015
Contact: Paul Bothwell (703) 474-6142 [email protected]


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Washington, DC — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today announced its lineup of speakers and special guests for the 2015 March for Marriage scheduled for this Saturday, April 25th, beginning at Third Street and the Capitol Reflecting Pool on the Washington Mall. The speakers and special guests reflect a heavy emphasis on communities of faith and include Papal Nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the official representative of Pope Francis, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, and prominent leaders of the Church of God in Christ and various protestant Christian denominations, along with representatives of numerous pro-family organizations.

"The outpouring of support from the faith and pro-family communities has been amazing, and is a reflection of how important we see this opportunity to demand of the justices of the US Supreme Court that they respect our values and our votes in support of preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman," said Brian Brown, president of NOM. "We are especially honored to welcome Pope Francis' representative who stands with leaders of other Christian denominations and pro-family organizations in support of marriage."

The March for Marriage, the third such march, is scheduled three days before the US Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in a case that could preserve traditional marriage laws throughout the country, or impose same-sex 'marriage' in every state in the nation. Speakers and special guests attending the march include:

  • Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz of New York
  • Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, The Apostolic Nuncio of the Holy See to the United States of America and The Organization of American States
  • Most Reverend Joseph E. Kurtz, Archbishop of Louisville and President of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops
  • Most Reverend William E. Lori, Archbishop of Baltimore
  • Most Reverend John Joseph McIntyre, Titular Bishop of Bononia and Auxiliary to the Archbishop of Philadelphia
  • Rev. Jim Garlow, Senior Pastor of Skyline Church in San Diego, CA
  • Reverend Brandon B. Porter, Prelate of the Tennessee Central Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ
  • Josh Duggar, Executive Director of FRC Action
  • Tom Minnery, President & CEO of CitizenLink
  • Jennifer A. Marshall, Vice President for The Institute for Family, Community and Opportunity, The Heritage Foundation
  • Reverend Bill Owens, Founder and President of the Coalition of African American Pastors
  • Cathy Ruse, Family Research Council
  • Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman, Liberty Counsel
  • Carlos Luis Vargas Silva, Founder and President, Central Biblico Internacional
  • Reverend Father Johannes Jacobse, Founder of the American Orthodox Institute and Pastor, Saint Peter Orthodox Church in Bonita Springs, FL
  • John Eastman, Chairman of the National Organization for Marriage
  • Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage

"We expect thousands of pro-marriage Americans, the largest crowd yet to attend a pro-marriage march, to come to Washington to show their support for traditional marriage," said Brian Brown. "We are honored that so many prominent leaders of faith and pro-family communities are lending their presence and prestige to the event. NOM is proud to march with each of them."

To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, please contact Paul Bothwell, [email protected], (703) 474-6142.

A Country for the People Should be Decided by the People

American history is fraught with differences of opinion: Patriots and Loyalists, Conservatives and Liberals, Federalists and Anti-federalists, to name a few. However, simply because there are two sides to an issue does not provide a reason for the Supreme Court to step in and rule on that issue. As Kyle Duncan writes in an article for Public Discourse:

ThinkstockPhotos-118461784The fact that Americans have reached different conclusions about same-sex marriage is not a sign of a constitutional crisis that requires the Supreme Court to step in. On the contrary, it’s a sign that our Constitution is working the way it should. In our federal system, this issue must be resolved at the state level. To resolve it through federal judicial decree would demean the democratic process, marginalize the views of millions of Americans, and do incalculable damage to our national civic life.

The redefinition of marriage goes even beyond an attack on our society’s core institution. At stake is the role of parenting, rights under family law, and the authority of self-governance:

The step from the older to the newer version of marriage is a momentous one. As Judge Jeffrey Sutton wrote for the Sixth Circuit, the concept of marriage as a man-woman institution is “measured in millennia, not centuries or decades,” and “until recently [it] had been adopted by all governments and major religions of the world.” In Windsor, the Supreme Court similarly observed that “marriage between a man and a woman had been thought of by most people as essential to the very definition of that term and to its role and function throughout the history of civilization.” Thus, when state citizens decide whether to adopt same-sex marriage, one thing appears inescapably true: they are exercising their sovereign authority over the basic architecture of family law.

Only from this perspective can we see what is truly at stake in the same-sex marriage cases. The plaintiffs are not merely asking the Court to recognize a new right. Instead, they are asking the Court to declare that the Constitution removes this issue from democratic deliberation. It is often asked by proponents of same-sex marriage what “harms” would flow from judicial recognition of their claims. From the perspective of democratic self-government, those harms would be severe, unavoidable, and irreversible.

As Duncan logically articulates, marriage, self-government, and civility are all at stake. Sadly, it will take years to pick up the broken pieces of our system, the pieces that cracked when religious freedom and state rights were openly attacked. But if the Supreme Court believes that the American people will watch their right to self-governance be undermined, they are mistaken. And this weekend is just the beginning.

John Eastman: Just the Facts, Ma'am

More than fifty-million people have, by their votes, demonstrated that they continue to understand the profound importance of marriage. They deserve better than to have the decision to protect or redefine marriage taken out of their hands by the Supreme Court.

ThinkstockPhotos-85447250In his most recent Public Discourse article, NOM Chairman John Eastman takes Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to task  for her egregious declaration: the American people will accept a Supreme Court decision to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples. Justice Ginsburg believes that this decision, which would force all states to license same-sex partners as “married,” will be accepted readily by the American people because “the change in people’s attitudes on that issue has been enormous,” according to Ginsburg.

However, Justice Ginsburg’s inappropriate comments on this subject also turned out to be simply untrue:

The numbers are staggering, though you won’t see them reported in the nation’s major newspapers. The issue has been on the ballot in thirty-nine statewide elections in thirty-five different states. The cumulative total: 51,483,777 votes in favor of retaining the man-woman definition of marriage, versus 33,015,412 votes in favor of same-sex marriage. That’s a vote margin of 60.93 percent to 39.07 percent, a landslide in American politics.

In addition to disproving Justice Ginsburg’s claim, Dr. Eastman also explains why same-sex marriage is not a constitutional right:

The petitioners’ demand that the Court “find” a right to same-sex “marriage” implicit in the text of the Fourteenth Amendment threatens to drag the Supreme Court, and the country, into another such quagmire. If the Constitution clearly compelled such a result, then it would be the “painful duty” of the Court to say so, a position recognized by the Court nearly two centuries ago in the landmark case of McCulloch v. Maryland. But the Constitution’s text does not remotely compel such a result. Without such a clear command, accepting the petitioners’ arguments would more accurately be described as a “self-inflicted wound” than the exercise of a “painful duty.”

So why is it that the Constitution’s text does not mandate same-sex marriage throughout the land? It does provide that “No State shall . . . deny to any person . . . the equal protection of the law.” Hence the “marriage equality” mantra from the proponents of same-sex marriage. That mantra may be a good debating tactic, but it is not a good legal argument, for it assumes the very thing in dispute.

The real truth is that the American people value the institution of marriage, and they are willing to fight to defend it as between one man and one woman. Regardless of Justice Ginsberg's personal opinions, Americans will not passively watch their precious rights and institutions crumble. Sorry Justice Ginsburg, but those are the facts.

You can read the full article via Public Discourse.

National Organization for Marriage Files Brief With US Supreme Court Detailing Public Support for Marriage; Tells Court There Is No Federal Constitutional Right to Same-Sex Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 7, 2015
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"The notion...that the American people have significantly altered their views on same-sex marriage...is simply not true."
— Frank Schubert, NOM Political Director —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and its political director, Frank Schubert, have filed a joint amicus brief with the US Supreme Court contesting the notion advanced by many gay activists that the nation has undergone a rapid change of opinion and now supports same-sex marriage. They also warned the court that a decision to impose same-sex marriage on the nation despite the votes of over 50 million people in nearly three-dozen states would galvanize opposition to same-sex marriage, just like the Roe decision galvanized opposition to abortion.

"The notion advanced in some corridors that the American people have significantly altered their views on same-sex marriage in recent years to the point that large majorities now support a redefinition of marriage and therefore would readily accept a mandate from this Court imposing same-sex marriage on the nation is simply not true," said Frank Schubert, NOM's national political director.

Schubert examined more than one dozen recent public opinion surveys and found that they fell into one of four categories:

  1. Those showing majority support for traditional marriage;
  2. Those showing support for same-sex marriage dropping;
  3. Those showing plurality support for one side or another, but not majority support; and
  4. Those showing majority support for same-sex marriage.

Schubert directed the Supreme Court's attention to the results of the February 2015 survey conducted by WPA Opinion Research for the Family Research Council, showing that "53% of Americans agreed that marriage should be defined only as the union of one man and one woman." These results were consistent with two 2012 surveys conducted for NOM by The Polling Company. Schubert also pointed out two recent surveys that showed a drop in support for same-sex marriage — Rasmussen Reports (February 2015) and Pew Research Center (September 2014). Rasmussen reported that, "Support for gay marriage has fallen to its lowest level in over a year," noting that support had dropped by 6% since December 2014, "tying the low last reached in late 2013." Rasmussen found that 42% of Americans support same-sex marriage, but 44% oppose it. Pew's survey found that support for same-sex marriage had dropped by five points in the previous seven months, while opposition increased by two points.

Schubert also reviewed surveys that show the country split on the issue of same-sex marriage, including a poll conducted by the Associated Press/GfK (February 2015 — 35% favor same-sex marriage while 31% oppose it), Relationships in America Survey (February 2014 — 42% of adults age 18-60 support same-sex marriage while 31% oppose it) along with the February 2015 Rasmussen Report survey showing results at 42% for and 44% against same-sex marriage.

Schubert also addressed several national surveys purporting to show majority support for same-sex marriage, including the Gallup Survey (May 2014) which claims that 55% of Americans believe that "marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized as valid with the same rights as traditional marriages." 42% disagree. Schubert noted that the Gallup survey suffers from two flaws. First, it connects the marriage issue with "rights," making it difficult to separate out the issue of redefining marriage from the general issue of gay rights. Second, Gallup engages in a practice called "priming" by asking a leading question about whether gay relationships should be legal (they have been legal for decades) designed to elicit support for same-sex couples right before asking respondents about support for same-sex marriage.

Schubert said, "[T]he most accurate statement of public opinion on the issue of the definition of marriage is that Americans have conflicting viewpoints on the issue. Neither side has "won" the debate, but one thing is clear: It is a debate that should be resolved by voters and legislators through the democratic process, not one that is truncated and its outcome mandated by [the Supreme] Court.

The brief was authored by John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, Director of the Claremont Institute's Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence and former Dean and current constitutional law professor at the Chapman University Fowler Law School. Eastman pointed out in the brief that the definition of marriage has been on statewide ballots 39 times in 35 states and that over 84 million votes have been cast on the issue, with over $216 million raised by the competing sides. He said, "Having failed in their efforts to redefine marriage through the democratic process and to change the policy judgments of their fellow citizens by persuasion, petitioners and their supporters seek to have this Court dramatically change both the definition and the purpose of marriage by judicial decree."

Eastman argued that there is no "fundamental right" or legal basis for the Court to impose same-sex marriage on the nation. "Fundamental rights...do not simply materialize from the Hollywood set of Will and Grace or because a President has "evolved" on this issue. Were it otherwise, the result would not be a "subtle" transfer of policy-making authority from the people to the court, but a broadside against democratic self-governance. This Court has never taken such a step, and in fact declined to do so when first asked forty years ago. It should not do so now," he wrote.

To schedule an interview with Frank Schubert, political director of the National Organization for Marriage, or John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Mark Your Calendars for the 2015 March for Marriage!

"This triangle of truisms, of father, mother and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it." - G.K. Chesterton

2015 March for Marriage

When: Saturday, April 25, 2015, at Noon ET

Where: Union Square, South of Capitol Reflecting Pool, Washington, DC

 

Who: Marriage defenders, champions, and leaders from across the nation join together to defend marriage, family, and American liberties!

Why: To defend marriage as the unique union between 1 man and 1 woman; to protect the family as the building block of society; to ensure that our children will have a future where basic American rights and liberties are honored, preserved, and protected.

Stayed tuned for more information to come!

Memo to Supreme Court: State Marriage Laws Are Constitutional

“There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution that requires all 50 states to redefine marriage.”

News stories report about one or more states’ same-sex marriage ban being declared “unconstitutional,” and the requirement for all states to redefine marriage as being simply a union between any two people, regardless of gender. There is one fact, however, that has been overlooked, ignored, and suppressed by same-sex marriage advocates: nothing in the US Constitution requires states to redefine marriage.

No one should be more aware of this fact than our Supreme Court justices. Tragically, some have already indicated that they will put their own personal preferences about same-sex marriage above their duty to uphold The Constitution.

57565279Like many of our American forefathers, there are those who refuse to remain silent while our rights - those that are actually in the Constitution - are trampled. Gene Schaerr and Ryan Anderson have written a memo to the Supreme Court, outlining cold hard facts, historical basis, and logical conclusions for why the definition of marriage as one man and one woman is in fact constitutional, and must be protected.

The overarching question before the Supreme Court in the four cases that were consolidated before the Sixth Circuit and for purposes of review by the Supreme Court—Obergefell v. Hodges, Tanco v. Haslam, DeBoer v. Snyder, and Bourke v. Beshear—is not whether an exclusively male–female marriage policy is the best, but only whether it is allowed by the U.S. Constitution.[4] In other words, the question is not whether government-recognized same-sex marriage is good or bad policy, but only whether it is required by the U.S. Constitution.

Schaerr and Anderson also explain why the existence of “the constitutional right to same-sex marriage” will be impossible to prove:

177319106The only way someone could succeed in such an argument is to adopt a view of marriage that sees it as an essentially genderless institution based only on the emotional needs of adults and then declare that the U.S. Constitution requires that the states (re)define marriage in such a way. Equal protection alone is not enough. To strike down marriage laws, the Court would need to say that the vision of marriage that our law has long applied equally is just wrong: that the Constitution requires a different vision entirely.

The memo goes on to explain where in the constitution marriage between one man and woman is protected, as well as rational basis for why it should be protected:

From a policy perspective, marriage is about attaching a man and a woman to each other as husband and wife to be father and mother to any children their sexual union may produce. When a baby is born, there is always a mother nearby: That is a fact of biology. The policy question is whether a father will be close by and, if so, for how long. Marriage, rightly understood, increases the odds that a man will be committed to both the children that he helps to create and to the woman with whom he does so.[44] The man–woman definition of marriage reinforces the idea—the social norm—that a man should be so committed.

The man–woman definition, moreover, is based on the anthropological truth that men and women are distinct and complementary, the biological fact that reproduction depends on a man and a woman, and the social reality that children deserve a mother and a father.

In short, fathers matter, and marriage helps to connect fathers to mothers and children. But you do not have to think this marriage policy is ideal to think it constitutionally permissible. Unless gays and lesbians are a suspect class, for an equal protection challenge to succeed, this simple analysis of the social function of marriage would have to be proved not just misguided, but positively irrational. Universal human experience, however, confirms the rationality of that policy.

87686941Marriage equality already exists in America: everyone has the freedom to marry someone of the opposite sex, or choose not to be married. As for same-sex couples, they too can choose to either marry or not marry someone of the opposite sex. Regardless of what a person might “prefer,” marriage cannot take place unless it is between a man and a woman. “Marriage” between same-sex individuals is biologically impossible, anthropologically unsustainable, and constitutionally unenforceable.

Schaerr and Anderson’s full memo can be read here. Time spent reading this memo is time invested in understanding the true argument around the constitutionality of marriage, as well as understanding just how blatantly states’ and the individual constitutional rights are being trampled. Our founding fathers were not tolerant when their innate human rights were denied, and we, the American people, will not tolerate our constitutional rights being denied.