Friday, December 20, 2013

Gays get marriage licences in Utah on Friday

A federal judge ruling on Utah’s ban on same-sex marriages was deemed to be unconstitutional on Friday, December 20th. Judge Robert J. Shelby, of the United States District Court for the District of Utah, wrote that in his  opinion such a law “perpetuates inequality.”

“The State’s current laws deny its gay and lesbian citizens their fundamental right to marry and, in so doing, demean the dignity of these same-sex couples for no rational reason,”  Judge Shelby stated on Friday. “Accordingly, the court finds that these laws are unconstitutional.”
This ruling was released just hours after another southwestern state, New Mexico, became the 17th state to allow same-sex marriage on Thursday.  It's state Supreme Court ruled that a similar ban there was unconstitutional as well.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has softened its stance on homosexuality in recent years, stating that the known origins of sexuality are not fully understood.  The LDS church was not involved in any part of the lawsuit.

"The Church has been consistent in its support of traditional marriage while teaching that all people should be treated with respect," said a LDS Church spokesman.

Nation wide, public opinion on the matter has made an about face over the past 10 years. In 2003, 55%  opposed homosexual marriage, with 37% supporting marriage equality. Today, 58% are in favor with 36% opposing the bans -- this according to data compiled by The Washington Post.

In the state of Utah, public opinion on the issue has been slower to turn with 28% supporting legalizing gay marriage in a February 2012 (Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy), while a poll taken at approximately the same time period (CBS/New York Times) revealed 38% support for gay marriage rights nationally.

The large Mormon population is opposed to homosexual activity while supporting a persons right to live his own lifestyle making use of "agency", the ability to choose for one's self. Nationally, nearly two in three Mormons in 2011 said society should discourage homosexual acts, while only one third of those polled in other denominations agreed, (Pew poll.) 63 % of Utahans are LDS. (2007 Pew Religion & Public Life survey.)

I may or may not agree with homosexuals getting married, But I am not one to stand in their way.  The constitution seems clear.  Humans are born with certain inalienable rights, regardless of religion or public opinion.  As long as these judges are studying constitutional law, the law the LDS as a people say they support, Homosexuals must be allowed to marry.

Churches should still retain their right to allow such marriage in their denominations.  I would fight for that right right along with the gays right to marry.

What do you think?  What do you think the mormon people will do?  The leaders of the LDS church?  I'd love to hear from you.


  1. While I agree on most points you have made, namely people being free to live their own life as they see fit, there is something you said that is categorically false.

    "Humans are born with certain inalienable rights, regardless of religion or public opinion."

    Your statement indicates that marriage is an "inalienable right". It is not. Inalienable - unable to be taken away from or given away by the possessor. Marriage in all current, legal and cultural forms is a privilege. A privilege that should be afford to everyone! But it is not a right.

    Nonetheless, adults should not be told by the government whom they can and cannot marry.

    While I am disappointed in the way Utah has come to recognize gay marriage (via a judge, instead of the people), I think it is awesome and I am very excited.

  2. I'm encouraging everyone interested in this case to read the actual ruling, especially if you think you disagree with it. You can find it here: