From Bryan Fischer, Idaho Values Alliance
Yesterday’s California Supreme Court ruling overturning the state’s ban on gay marriage is just another catastrophic example of judicial activism on steroids.
Four black-robed oligarchs callously overrode the expressed will of 4,618,673 Californians who voted in 2000 to define marriage exclusively as the union of one man and one woman. When four people can ignore the democratically enacted decision of 4 million people, we no longer have a republic at all. This is a form of tyranny, plain and simple.
Observation: the Court believes that majority rule is good enough for judges – four beats three – but not good enough for the people. Only an out-of-control judiciary can believe that four beats four million.
The Court ruled that a ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional, even though the California Constitution says nary a word about same-sex marriage. In other words, the “emanations from penumbras” cobra has once again reared its poisonous head.
A dissenting judge correctly wrote, “Nothing in our Constitution, express or implicit, compels the majority’s startling conclusion that the age-old understanding of marriage – an understanding recently confirmed by an initiative law – is no longer valid.”
The truth of the matter is that the California Constitution says nothing – that’s zip, nada, zilch – about the right of same-sex couples to marry. Further, the state’s marriage law, enacted by initiative with over 61% of the vote, is constitutionally immune from repeal by the Legislature.
The judge continued, “If there is to be a further sea change in the social and legal understanding of marriage itself, that evolution should occur by similar democratic means. The majority forecloses this ordinary democratic process, and, in doing so, oversteps its authority.”
He added, “In reaching this decision, I believe, the majority violates the separation of powers, and thereby commits profound error.” This decision, he wrote, is an “exercise in legal jujitsu.”
Observation: in violating the separation of powers, enshrined in the California Constitution, the Court has itself violated the Constitution. If anybody has done anything unconstitutional here, it is clearly the Court, not the people of California, who followed the Constitution to the letter in its prescribed method for enacting law by initiative.
Lincoln’s question at Gettysburg was whether a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people” could long endure. The answer from California: not so much.. California is now a government “of the judges, by the judges, and for the judges,” and such a government will last as long as a meekly compliant people allow it to.
Governor Schwarzenegger has submissively and weakly bowed the knee to the state’s newly self-appointed masters (where is the Terminator when we need him?), and says he won’t fight their ruling, even though it trashes every known concept of the separation of powers.
This whole affair naturally raises the question: why does California even bother with a legislature or a governor? What’s the point, when every important public policy decision is made by four judges who weren’t even elected to office and therefore feel no accountability to the people?
Worse, California has no residency requirement for marriage, meaning in as little as 30 days we may see a stream of homosexual couples returning to the Gem State waving their “marriage” licenses and shopping for a court which will insist Idaho recognize their union.
A gay-rights attorney exultantly says she expects “gays from around the country to flock to the state to wed.”
Idaho’s Constitution prohibits the legal recognition of such relationships, but as California demonstrates, even one sympathetic judge can turn a constitution into a meaningless scrap of paper. This makes the Idaho election for a seat on our state’s Supreme Court as important as it possibly can be. It is imperative that Idahoans elevate to the bench a judge who believes in a strict construction of the Constitution and the law.
Idahoans can equip themselves to cast an intelligent and informed vote in this election by going to the Gem State Voter Guide here.
Massachusetts, the only other state which recognizes same-sex marriage, at least has a provision in its state law that prohibits an out-of-state couple from getting married there if the marriage would not be legal in their home state. California has no such restriction.
Pro-family Californians have collected enough signatures to put a marriage amendment on the ballot this November. A pro-homosexual Attorney General (Jerry Brown, affectionately, accurately, and formerly known as “Governor Moonbeam”) is now responsible to validate those signatures, and opportunities for mischief therefore abound. Anti-family government bureaucrats in Oregon managed to creatively invalidate enough signatures to keep a similar measure off its ballot this year.
Further, I believe a previously unheard-of option may soon be exercised in California. (Remember you read it here first.)
I expect to see the California State Supreme Court issue a ruling that its own state Constitution is unconstitutional.
Here’s what I mean. Let’s assume, for the sake of argument, that Californians pass the marriage amendment this November, thereby making a ban on same-sex marriage a part of the Constitution.
But wait, the gay lobby will say, the Court has already ruled that it’s unconstitutional to ban gay marriage in California! If you try to amend the Constitution to prohibit gay marriage, they will argue in court, you are trying to do something that the Court has already decided is forbidden by the Constitution.
It’s unconstitutional, they will say, even to try to amend the Constitution to ban same-sex marriage. Expect a lawsuit along these lines, either before or immediately after the election.
There is no reason, given the activist bent of the Court, why such a legal effort wouldn’t be successful, meaning that even the plain language of a properly enacted amendment won’t be enough to insulate Californians from judges determined to impose their own view of social policy on the rest of us.
Forget the words of our Founders. Forget the words of Alexander Hamilton, who said, “The will of the people makes the essential principle of the government.”
Forget the words of Thomas Jefferson, who said, “Try every provision of our Constitution, and see if it hangs directly on the will of the people.”
Forget the words of James Madison, who said, “The past frequency of wars [is traced] to a will in the government independent of the will of the people.”
Repressive tyranny is alive and well in America. Its uniform is a black robe and its weapon of choice a brandished gavel.
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