Not sure you know

US District Court Chief Judge Vaughn Walker in San Francisco defied the state\’s supreme court and a narrow majority of its voters by ruling that homosexuals and lesbians have a right in the federal constitution to marry on an equal basis with heterosexuals.

Whether or not gay marriage should be allowed is very different indeed from whether there is any constitutional right to it.

And given that the US federal constitution leaves marriage as something for the States to deal with, and given that said constitution has absolutely nothing at all to say about Teh Gays, I\’m really not all that sure that there is a federal cosntitutional right to gay marriage.

3 thoughts on “Not sure you know”

  1. Nor is there a Constitutional right to murder babies as they emerge from the womb, but that doesn’t prevent it being done. People who are keen on written Constitutions need to explain how we are to be protected from rule by judicial whim and judicial coup d’etat. The US Constitution is a most impressive document, but its influence on that country’s constitution is, at times, marginal.

  2. Oh, Tim. Worked out your views on the Equal Protection clause, then? Equal protection? Due process? Take a strict constructionist approach to the constitution? Think that issues not mentioned in the constitution are not covered by the constitution? Even read the opinion? Yes, whether or not gay marriage should be allowed is very different from whether there is any constitutional right to it, and intelligent people can take both sides of both points. You don’t have to agree with him, but the judge isn’t being silly.

  3. Meant to add: there are other useful distinctions, too: between things that are constitutional, and things that the Supreme Court of the time being holds to be constitutional, even between things that are constitutional in the 9th Circuit and things that are constitutional elsewhere in the US.

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