Whoa! I'm psychic!
We are seeing a replay of California's Prop 8 bullshit, this time played out in a land of stupidity called the state of Utah. Anyone saying I shouldn't focus my ire on the Mormons here isn't paying attention -- Prop 8 got passed initially thanks to PAC's and phone campaigns co-ordinated by the Mormon church in general and the ones in Utah in particular. Anyone familiar with the Mormons (I grew up around a community of them, the only Catholic family in the area) and their beliefs can understand why I find the notion of them thinking their interpersonal relationships are perfectly normal while gays are a disease is total bullshit. Any religion that still has ceremonies for ritualized murder for heretics or steals peoples religious rights with baptism by proxy is a false religion, full stop.
Here's the timeline as things have unfolded -- Utah passed a ban on gay marriage. Moudi Sbeity and Derek Kitchen led a consortium with two other gay couples in filing a lawsuit, saying the ban violated their civil rights. The case was heard by US District Judge Robert Shelby. On December 20, he ruled the couples were right and gay marriage should be allowed in Utah.
The reaction of the residents of Utah can be summed up like this:
Suddenly couples were racing to get married because this was only the first level of appeal, who knows how long this will last? An appeal was filed, sending it to the Denver-based 10th US Circuit Court Of Appeals, along with a request for a stay to stop the marriages from happening during the appeals process. Two judges turned down the request for a stay. Now, the Supreme Court has ruled for a stay as the decision works its way through the appeals process.
This sound familiar? It should. More than a thousand couples that were rightfully married now find their relationships in legal limbo. If the ban is upheld, all these people will see their marriages stripped away. The only difference between this and California is that the legal status stands at the moment, it isn't gone like it was during the Prop 8 debacle. And the Supremes didn't give a reason, they didn't rule on the merits of the case. Can't you idiots grow a fucking spine at some point?
So, what should we watch for? Simply put, this will go to the Supreme Court, don't doubt it. Whatever ruling is made by the Appeals Court doesn't matter. The Supremes will usually only hear cases they feel they might want to overturn. Not this time. It's the can they kicked down the road, and it's coming up again. They have no choice to but deal with it, and during a highly contested election year.
Strictly speaking, the Supremes need to rule for marriage equality. First, they have already dumped DOMA. Second, the Supreme Court, over the last several decades, has become less and less friendly to state's rights, as the Obamacare showdowns demonstrated. If they suddenly uphold the ban as a state's rights decision, it becomes contradictory and screams for volunteers to challenge gay marriage on a federal level just as the D's are getting ready for Hillary to run for the White House in 2016. And you better believe there will be a challenge. With the influx of government influence thanks to things like national health care, you can't have people being denied something the government is requiring them to do just because the state thinks it's icky.
The Supremes are bringing this situation on themselves. They can't not hear an appeal no matter what it is, and they will have to make a watershed moment happen, the very thing they've been avoiding since the Florida Recount Fiasco.
We'll be watching.