This morning she was faced with a life changing moment of truth. She had to choose whether to issue marriage licenses, defying her Christian conviction, or continue to refuse them, defying the federal judge who could hit her with fines or order that she be hauled off to jail. She decided to stand by her Christian faith and face the consequences whatever they may be. A brave choice under the circumstances, but one she should have never had to make.
The issue of same-sex marriage, at the legal level, is really a very simple one. The federal government has no authority to control or regulate marriage of any kind. There is no constitutional right to marriage guaranteed to anyone. The extent the federal government has any say is in defining what criteria must be met for federal tax purposes. And for those that would argue that the “Equal treatment” clause of the 14th Amendment gives same-sex couples all the same privileges as bestowed to opposite-sex couples I would remind you that the legal standard for “equal treatment” is identical treatment not “fair” treatment. If both heterosexuals and homosexuals are denied state recognition of civil unions based on “marriage” to a person of the same sex then that in fact does meet the identical treatment standard. Yes, I know that the SCOTUS has given an opinion that would be contrary to my statement, but their opinion and the “rulings” of any other federal judge or court is a huge overreach on their part and as one would expect they have moved to try to further that extra-constitution power hoping that we the people won’t challenge.
With no federal authority over marriage, per the constitution, the power falls back to the states and the people. I would argue that no government has any authority over marriage, that it is in fact a spiritual union between the people involved and God. But the states decided a very long time ago that they had need to define their criteria for recognizing civil unions that they would refer to as marriage for various legal purposes. Pursuant to that end the states were well within their rights to establish those criteria in accordance with the will of the people of those states. Which then brings us back to Kim Davis and the state of Kentucky.
In Kentucky, same-sex marriage is not currently legal. In fact the state has the Defense of Marriage Act written into their state constitution. Their state constitution defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman in Section 233A. The language was approved by the voters of Kentucky with almost 75% of the vote. These facts make issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples against the law within the state of Kentucky. Regardless of anyone’s “feelings” on this issue the federal courts do not have the constitutional authority to force Kim Davis or anyone else violate the current state law.
The entire Kentucky state government should be standing with Kim Davis. Not because of support or lack of support of same-sex marriage but because of the federal government’s attempt to override their state sovereignty. There should be outrage by every citizen of this nation that the federal court system hasn’t refused to hear these cases citing the fact that it’s simply not a federal issue. The fact that this issue even got to the SCOTUS represents a willful choice to ignore the limits of the federal courts placed on them by the U.S. Constitution.
I, personally, am indifferent on the issue of same-sex marriage. I don’t care what any state decides to set as it criteria in the establishment of civil unions that they call “marriage”. But I do care about the law of the land. The Constitution is the “Prime Directive” for this nation. The SCOTUS does not make law, it renders opinions, which on occasions have been reversed, about the constitutionality of laws. The states themselves have the constitutionally upheld means of nullification to fight federal overreach when all else fails. So all of this comes down to working within the system or trying to trash the system. Following the law or pushing an agenda at any cost.
The activist that have been working so hard for so long to get same-sex marriage legally recognized in every state should continue their efforts to change to hearts and minds of the people in each state, not try to force it on people who don’t agree with them. I understand the desire to take the short-cut, because “it’s hard”, and it takes “too long” but if your cause is as noble as many of you feel it is, then isn’t it worth doing the right way? Stop trying to short-circuit the Constitution and force your will on others. Just go back to work if you really believe in it.
I stand with Kim Davis, not just because of the government overreach but also because of her courage. She has made a stand based on her faith. She has let her moral compass guide her in a very tough situations. I applaud her and would hope that even those who hold different beliefs than she, can appreciate and respect her stand. I would ask that all liberty loving, freedom cherishing Americans join me in calling for the Kentucky state government to stand behind Kim Davis, for the federal government to back off, and for the same-sex activists to pursue their goals in accordance to the state by state efforts of the past.
If the people of Kentucky decide to change their laws in regards to same-sex marriage then Kim Davis will then be forced to choose between honoring her faith and doing her job. But until Kentucky does that, she should continue to do her job in accordance with Kentucky state law and the federal courts should get back to federal matters.