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June 29, 2013 at 8:00 AM
Supreme Court must defend equality
In his dissenting opinion in United States v. Windsor, Justice Antonin Scalia laments that, in invalidating the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the Supreme Court has pawned the gift of democracy that the Founding Fathers left us. [“Victories for gay marriage, but still not law of land,” page one, June 27.]
Indeed, Scalia writes so glowingly about the merits of democratic decision-making, and so derisively of the institution in which he sits, one might be tempted to ask him if he doesn’t wonder at times why the Founding Fathers didn’t merely write that the will of the majority will out.
Justice Scalia is well aware that majorities can be capricious, tyrannical and wrong. He just doesn’t think that DOMA is any of these things. He writes, “to defend traditional marriage is not to condemn, demean, or humiliate those that would prefer other arrangements.”
DOMA denied legally married homosexual couples tangible federal monetary and statutory benefits that it granted to legally married heterosexual couples. How can this be anything other than blatant discrimination?
The Founding Fathers left us other gifts in addition to our democracy. They left us a Constitution within which can be found a guarantee for equal protection under the law, and they left us another gift in the Supreme Court’s power to tell us that, no, sometimes the will of the majority does not will out.
Stephen Crotts, Edmonds
Tuesday’s five to four
of race and hate.
it’s a case of
love and marriage
as well as
Five to four
Five to four
At least one side
What a strange elite
decided just by
Kerry Ruffler, Seattle
June 27, 2013 at 8:00 PM
Justice is being done
Martin Luther King Jr. preached, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” [“Victories for gay marriage, but still not law of land,” page one, June 27.]
I celebrate this decision. There is more work to be done, but the wave of justice and history is one our side.
The Rev. Brigitta Remole, Plymouth Congregational Church, UCC, Seattle
April 1, 2013 at 6:04 AM
Civil-rights issues should be resolved on federal level
Bruce Ramsey is wrong [“Supreme Court should let each state decide same-sex marriage,” Opinion, March 27]. Marriage equality is very much a civil-rights issue, and one that needs to be resolved at the federal level.
And it is perfectly reasonable to compare its history with that of slavery or voting rights. Limiting one’s rights due to their sexuality, race, gender or anything that can be attributed to a genetic lotto — each reason is equally wrong.
And to deny marriage rights to gay and lesbians who happen to live in slower-evolving states is not acceptable. We will get this done, nationwide, and every state will be forced to accept the new reality. Bigots will be sued, rightfully, and will learn to hide in the very shadows that the LGBT community has occupied all these cold, dark years.
–Andrew Cleary, Seattle
March 30, 2013 at 6:31 AM
Marriage more sacred when not founded on discrimination
Would you buy gas at a gas station with a sign saying “No Gays Allowed!”
Well, if you had no choice, you would. But if you had the choice between two gas stations, one with the sign and one without, you’d go to the one that doesn’t discriminate. You know you would; you might not be comfortable around gays but you’re not a jerk.
So why is marriage different [“Same-sex marriage cases go to high court,” page one, March 24]?
Why would you want to be part of an institution that says, “No Gays Allowed!”
In the past, my (straight) marriage had to be based on inequality. Our great institution was tainted with that sign. But now we have the choice. Aren’t our (straight) marriages more sacred because they are no longer founded on discrimination?
–Randy Winn, Seattle
March 29, 2013 at 7:05 AM
Spousal rights would not be recognized out of state
Bruce Ramsey advocates that each state should decide whether a gay couple is married or not [“Supreme Court should let each state decide same-sex marriage,” Opinion, March 27]. Thus, a legally married couple from Massachusetts visits Hartford, Conn., where one is hospitalized, and the spouse cannot visit or be involved [in medical decisions]. Very critical spousal rights are taken away.
Inheritance, taxes, health care, visitation rights, etc., are seriously affected by the marital status of a couple. Clearly, this issue should not be left to a hodgepodge of local decisions by state legislators anymore than states should decide their own international borders.
–Charles S. Hoff, Redmond
Marriage equality is urgent
As a 61 year-old kid, I am surprised by the euphoria I feel about the upcoming wedding to my partner of 14 years. As our service begins, we will have a moment of silence to remember our parents who did not live long enough to see their daughters get married.
So please, do not suggest there is no urgency to grant marriage equality to all citizens of all 50 States.
–Gayle Brenchley, Mount Vernon
We shouldn’t just let it ‘play out’
While Bruce Ramsey is content to let same-sex marriage “play out,” 37,000 kids in California can’t have their parents get married.
Hundreds of thousands of American citizens across the country aren’t free to marry the person they love, because we should “let it play out.”
In 1967, should the Supreme Court have let interracial marriage “play out?” Where would our society be if they had decided that “expanding marriage [was] up to the states?” Alabama only removed its interracial ban in 2000. Is that really the right way to handle the fundamental rights of human beings?
Who are we to decide whom gets to marry whom? Since when did it become a legitimate right of the states to say who could have fundamental rights and who couldn’t? Are we to abandon same-sex couples in states such as Mississippi, where a same-sex ballot initiative isn’t projected to pass for decades?
These are the questions I have for Mr. Ramsey, who, as far as I know, didn’t have to ask voters for approval of his marriage. I wish he would consider that before declaring that fate for couples with love as real as his.
–Ben Lennon, Seattle
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