Friday, November 07, 2014

6th Circuit upholds gay marriage ban, creates circuit split

It's an interesting debate about the role of judges.  Is it the judiciary's duty to defer to the will of the people or to provide a check against the majority while upholding our constitutional rights.  I think the dissent has the better of this one (here are both opinions):

Today, my colleagues seem to have fallen prey to the misguided notion that the intent of the framers of the United States Constitution can be effectuated only by cleaving to the legislative will and ignoring and demonizing an independent judiciary. The framers crafted Article III to ensure that rights, liberties, and duties need not be held hostage by popular whims. If we in the judiciary do not have the authority, and indeed the responsibility, to right fundamental wrongs left excused by a majority of the electorate, our whole intricate, constitutional system of checks and balances, as well as the oaths to which we swore, prove to be nothing but shams.

Meantime, Sandy Yates, the wife of Supreme Court litigant John Yates, posted in our comment section for yesterday's post:
Just to clarify a couple of points. The fish measured off shore had been frozen for 4 days. When remeasured on shore were put up a metal conveyor and dumped into a vat of water in August in Florida. Hmmm, do you think they may have thawed out. The average fish on shore were 1/2 on bigger than off shore. In addition the FWC officer testified he does NOT measure fish in accordance with federal law. Now, add the fact that the FWC expert witness provided a document with an analysis of measuring the fish the correct way those fish (even frozen) were mostly over 20 inches. Not for the clincher. While NOAA was running around getting this "paper shredding indictment", the head Law Enforcement officer for the whole US was in front of Congress for shredding 80% of his files while being investigated by the Inspector General's Office for abuse of fisherman. Ironic, don't you think.

Go get 'em Mrs. Yates!


Anonymous said...

Notice how the Court waited until after the election. Very courageous.

Anonymous said...

For all the "Will of the People" right-wingers out there. At the time of Loving v. Virginia, 15 states, including Florida, made it illegal (as in you will get thrown in jail) for a Caucasian to marry a colored person. The Supreme Court had to step in and invalidate those laws. As an aside, my wife and I would not have been able to marry in Florida under that law (Fla Stat. § 741.11).