Friday, October 11, 2013

New Jersey judge pushes ahead with gay marriage in spite of state objections

1. New Jersey judge pushes ahead with gay marriage in spite of state objections. (2013 October 10) The Gaurdian.

2. Category of problem: Marriage, civil rights

3. Level of problem: State level

4. The article concerns: A New Jersey judge's decision to refuse a stay on New Jersey's new policy that the state will issue gay marriage licenses.

5. Why this is important: New Jersey's decision to issue gay marriage licenses, and later decision to refuse a stay issued by the New Jersey state government, is a legal recognition of same-sex marriage by the state, thereby granting married same-sex couples state benefits as outlined by New Jersey law.

6. My views on this issue/policy: I agree with the decision to grant marriage licenses, as well as Judge Jacobson's decision not to respect Governor Christie's attempted stay on implementation of the policy. To deny same sex couples the right to marriage, and the rights therein, is an active violation of the Equal Rights Amendment, and an attempt to satisfy the moral beliefs of one (dwindling) group of people. To make same-sex marriage illegal, or unrecognizable by law, is both unconstitutional and unethical.

As I have said in previous posts, the goal of the law should be to protect the rights of all groups, not uphold the moral (often religious) interests of one group. The recognition of gay marriage is in direct compliance with my beliefs about legislation, as well as my beliefs about the morality of homosexuality. Furthermore, I feel that the interests of the opposed are uniquely and especially unfounded in the sense that the recognition of gay marriage doesn't directly affect them at all, much less offend their rights as citizens. Similarly, it makes little sense to me why Christie would issue a stay on the policy, other than to pocket some conservative cred for his pending attempt in the presidential race - as Judge Jacobson said, "the state has not demonstrated how it would suffer in any meaningful way if the order [for a stay] is enforced." I applaud Jacobson for her help in this ongoing civil rights battle.

We have already waited far too long to grant homosexual citizens the right to marriage, a right which belongs to no political party or religion, and issuing a stay on same-sex marital recognition is childish and insulting.

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