Sex and Obamacare (Pt. 2)

Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in yet another one of these pesky 5:4 decisions—where the conservative wing collectively just happens to come down on the conservative side of an issue and the liberal wing on the liberal, and we’re supposed to believe that personal druthers and ideology never factor into the rulings of these people, as if each one of them weren’t smart enough to present an erudite and compelling argument in favor of any side of any issue in perfect accordance with his or her preferred outcome—that for-profit corporations may, on religious grounds, opt out of the Affordable Care Act’s mandate to Continue reading “Sex and Obamacare (Pt. 2)”

Taps for DOMA

U.S. Supreme Court

The Defense of Marriage Act is dead.

(To be precise, only §3 of DOMA, which for all federal purposes defined marriage as “a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife,” has been ruled unconstitutional, but that’s close enough.)

Good.

What’s not so good is the manner in which it was put to the sword.

A few days before the decision in United States v. Windsor, which would effectively kill DOMA by striking down its §3, was handed down, one John Sarratt, a Raleigh attorney, unrelated albeit referring to this very case, summed up his personal judicial philosophy in response to Continue reading “Taps for DOMA”

Citizens Split on Citizens United

U.S. Supreme Court Chamber

“There are real problems when people want to spend lots of money on a candidate … they’ll drown out the people who don’t have a lot of money,” Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer recently remarked in reference to the infamous 5-4 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision of 2010, whose dissenting minority of four he had joined.

By nature, when a decision isn’t unanimous, “somebody is making a mistake,” he added.

But which side was making a mistake in Citizens United?

Was it the five-justice majority, who struck down key provisions in the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of Continue reading “Citizens Split on Citizens United”

My Civil Right to Autosexual Marriage

Wedding RingIf I wanted to marry myself and applied for a marriage license, chances are that every license-issuing magistrate on the planet would politely but firmly instruct me to take a hike. But why? More importantly, why should my request be turned down? What could possibly be wrong with entering into the sacred bonds of matrimony with the person I love, honor, and cherish above all others? How is it that, merely on account of my spouse selection, I am being denied my civil right to shed the societal stigma of singlehood and enjoy a tax break like everyone else?

Well, for starters, if only one person is involved, it ain’t marriage. Simple as that. Says who? Why, tradition, of course. Historically speaking, the concept of marriage has never been known to extend to unions with oneself.

So there I go, and there I have it. Bummer.

Gay marriage proponents argue that the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment guarantees the right to same-sex marriage, and that resorting to the ballot box in this matter amounts to an exercise in futility, since–short of the passing of an constitutional amendment–our fundamental rights are not accountable to the democratic process. The Equal Protection Clause, by definition, trumps the outcome of Continue reading “My Civil Right to Autosexual Marriage”