TX judge strikes down gay marriage ban

Federal Judge Orlando Garcia in the deeply-conservative state of Texas has ruled the state’s ban on gay marriage to be unconstitutional, arguing the ban as no “legitimate governmental purpose” and demeans their dignity.  Judge Garcia has stayed his decision until it makes its way through the lengthy and expensive appeals process.

“Without a rational relation to a legitimate governmental purpose, state-imposed inequality can find no refuge in our United States Constitution,” Garcia wrote in his decision.  “These Texas laws deny plaintiffs access to the institution of marriage and its numerous rights, privileges, and responsibilities for the sole reason that Plaintiffs wish to be married to a person of the same sex.”

Texas is the latest in a growing list of states that have finally decided to embrace true freedom and remove arbitrary and nonsensical bans on certain marriages.  Judges in Utah, Virginia and Oklahoma have ruled similarly, all decisions that await legal appeals.  The Supreme Court will likely be the deciding factor.

Read more from the Houston Chronical: http://www.chron.com/news/article/Texas-ban-on-gay-marriage-ruled-unconstitutional-5270241.php

Ann Coulter makes a fool out of herself in front of 1000 Libertarians

220px-Ann_Coulter2Debating with liberals and conservatives at the International Students for Liberty conference in Washington D.C., raging conservative and political loudmouth Ann Coulter demonstrated how little she knows about the cause of freedom and liberty when she likened drug legalization and gay marriage to “sucking up to liberals” and “being pussies”.

The discussion was hosted by Libertarian John Stossel.  Coulter, who apparently thought insulting a crowd of 1000 students with asinine and uninformed comments regarding the Libertarian position on social issues like drugs and gay marriage was a good idea, proved once again how little both liberals and conservatives know of true freedom.  Liberty is not a comedy act, Ms. Coulter.

“This is why people think libertarians are pussies,” Coulter said of marijuana legalization.  ”We’re living in a country that is 70 percent socialist, the government takes 60 percent of your money… And you want to suck up to your little liberal friends and say, ‘Oh, but we want to legalize pot.’”

“You know, if you’re a little more manly you would tell them what your position on employment discrimination is.”  Ann Coulter – lecturing Libertarians on how to be true men.

Stossel then pressed Coulter on the issue of gay marriage.  ”Why can’t gays get married like straights do?” he asked.  To a widespread chorus of boos from the crowd, Coulter said gays can get married…to members of the opposite sex. “This is another one where you’re just sucking up to liberals,” Coulter said. “Liberals want to destroy the family so that you will have one loyalty, and that is to the government.”  That’s cute.

Calling marriage the “most important institution to civilize young people”, Coulter supports making divorce more difficult instead, apparently favoring the idea of keeping unfit couples together for the sake of a “civilized youth” – however the math for that works out.

Appropriately, Stossel reminded the shock conservative commentator that the Libertarian position on gay marriage, like every other position, is about individual freedom and liberty to live your life without interference from an overarching governing body.  “No, we believe the individual should be left alone,” he said.

I don’t know what you’re on, Ms. Coulter, but whatever it is, I am sure you’d make good money selling it to others – if it were legal.

Marriage is a state issue, not a matter of federal law

Of course gay marriage should be left to the states. Indeed, all marriage should be left to.  the states. Search the U.S. Constitution from start to finish, and you will find no reference whatsoever to marriage. You will, however, find the 10th Amendment, which reads as follows: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Marriage is not commerce, war, or taxation. It is unrelated to money, the post office, the patent system, or any of the other enumerated powers of the federal government. Its regulation is neither necessary nor proper in pursuit of those powers.

At the drafting of the Constitution, the states all had marriage laws of one kind or another. There were wide disparities among them, both then and now, and such disparities have existed at all times in between.

The founders had no desire to settle such matters, and they did not wish a future Congress to do so either. The Constitution they wrote left only two choices: Either allow the states to regulate marriage (with, perhaps, federal consequences to follow) — or else return marriage to the people, to individuals, families, churches, and communities. Either approach would be consistent with the Constitution. The Defense of Marriage Act, however, is not.

Speaking personally for a moment, I am in a same-sex marriage. Some states recognize it, including my home state of Maryland. I am happy that they do, and I wish more of them would. But just as Congress can’t prohibit same sex marriage, I must conclude that Congress can’t establish it, either.

Whether the states must all recognize same sex marriages as a matter of civil rights law, unrelated to the 10th Amendment, is a question the Supreme Court may soon address. But I find it implausible that the Court would do so now. The Prop. 8 case by no means requires it. And it’s still less plausible that the Court would make the sweeping judgment required to say yes. In the meantime, I am content both to support same sex marriage and to advocate for it on the state level, where public opinion is rapidly shifting in its favor, and where the good fight is still to be fought.

Article originally published at the Cato Institute: http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/marriage-should-not-be-regulated-federal-government