There are many alleged Christians who treat the 10 Commandments as the "10 Suggestions", and as such it should not surprise anyone that the Constitution's 10 original Amendments, otherwise known as The Bill of Rights, are also treated as "10 Suggestions."
But they're not.
I, for one, am putting a stake in the ground -- over this line thou shalt not pass if any politician, political group or party wishes me to support, endorse, work for, contribute money to or otherwise be involved with them.
That's the issue of marriage.
The US Supreme Court is likely to issue some sort of ruling on DOMA, The Defense of Marriage Act, just another in a long line of unconstitutional laws.
Here's the argument raised by both sides:
“Of course, Congress has the right to define such a fundamental institution,” said Brian Brown, president of the Washington-based National Organization for Marriage, which opposes same-sex nuptials. “This is a question for the representatives of the people. Congress represents the people.”
Sorry, but no.
Congress is expressly limited to the powers granted to it under The Constitution. That document is not one of exclusions, it is one of defined and limited powers. If you cannot find an explicit delegation of power to do a specific thing in the Constitution, Congress lacks the power and authority to do it, irrespective of what the people want.
There is only one proper way for Congress to acquire a power it does not have -- amend the Constitution. That is a difficult process on purpose as it explicitly protects the rights of all by making it extremely hard to accomplish, and therefore it is only something that can occur under fairly extreme circumstances, backed by huge supermajorities of the people.
This is how liberty flourishes.
Note that there are a few voices in the wildnerness, other than mine, on this issue putting forward what I argue is the only correct and Constitutional position:
The colloquy on same-sex marriage ignores the most compelling alternative: abolish civil marriage. The classic way for a diverse polity to resolve contentious issues with minimum strife is to decentralize and privatize those issues. A world without civil marriage would be a world in which everyone can pursue his or her own vision of marriage without imposing those views on others.
Abolishing civil marriage would ultimately be good for marriage by ending the government's legal monopoly defining the family. The resulting competition among alternative forms of marriage would strengthen the institution, just as competition among religions has made America a more religious society than societies with established churches.
Though not without its complications (including the problems of transition), abolishing civil marriage is the best alternative for our diverse society.
Edward A. Zelinsky
Benjamin N. Cardozo
School of Law
The larger issue is that the Federal Government lacks the authority to define marriage. It's not in the Constitution as a delegated federal power. Period.
I have repeatedly argued exactly this point, but it seems that everyone loves their wedge issues. So be it -- but I won't support it, and that's a non-negotiable position. No, I will not "go along to get along", I will instead erect my middle finger in the direction of those who demand that I surrender principle and accede to racism and other forms of institutionalized discrimination.
The incessant pandering on the left, right, and so-called Libertarians (who are lying through their teeth -- anyone claiming they are Libertarian when they simultaneously demand to be able to initiate force against those who disagree with them on what "marriage" is declares their claim of being "Libertarian" as an outrageous perversion and abject fraud) is disgusting and un-American.
These people -- all of them -- use our Constitution as toilet paper, just as surely as do those who abuse the 1st, 2nd, 4th and 5th Amendments.
Their arguments further intentionally disregard the history of civil marriage law, which clearly evidences intent as an enforcement tool for racism; the earliest civil marriage regulations in America were put into place to prevent intermarriage between white people and both blacks and native Americans. These laws were continued through Reconstruction as a means of preventing former slaves from marrying white people. These are facts, not suppositions, and even the most-trivial of research can find these laws and their specific statutory language, some of which are still on the books even though rendered inoperative by court decision.
(And incidentally, if you want to know why have "Gun Control", which began with The Gun Control Act of 1968, you need only look to The Civil Rights Act of 1964. It was only when "those people" could own guns that suddenly we needed "gun control laws"; for the same reason I adamantly refuse to support political candidates who think there is "compromise" on "gun control" -- those laws, as with marriage laws, were intended and enacted for racist purpose.)
But that simply adds disgust and outrage to the fact that you cannot find in the Constitution authority for the Federal Government to "define" marriage or enforce any provision related to it; such a power was never delegated. The 10th Amendment makes clear that whatever is not explicitly delegated to the Federal Government is not under Federal purview; it belongs to the states or the people individually
Yes, I understand that the 10th Amendment and indeed the entire Constitution is, today, honored more in the breach than the observance. But two or more wrongs do not make a right and that someone has violated the law serially, notoriously and openly does not excuse continued abuse.
Those who claim to be "liberty" advocates yet refuse to get the government the hell out of the people's bedrooms are Statists, not Liberty candidates or parties.
So here is my line in the sand -- my stake in the ground.
Government has no right to define, privilege, disabuse, recognize or debar any consensual living arrangement among adults, irrespective of whether the justification is civil, religious or otherwise. The only legitimate government role is in the provision of a place where people can adjudicate disputes between themselves in a civil format, commonly called "a courtroom", and where contractual matters, freely entered into, can be heard and allocation of damages, if any, can occur subject to public review and where such agreements must be adjudicated without prejudice irrespective of the parties thereto.
In short if you want to get married, go see a Priest.
Any political group that wants my support, endorsement or effort, irrespective of who it is or what flag they wave, can conform to and advance this position or my response to their entreaty for my assistance, support, endorsement or money is and shall be most-easily expressed in two simple words:
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