Debate Club

Marriage Equality Must Be Recognized by States and the Federal Government

By + More

There are difficult questions in constitutional law. This is not one of them. The Constitution provides that "No state shall . . . deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws," and the last time I checked, gay men and lesbians are people. Moreover, LGBT Americans possess all the traits the Supreme Court identified as requiring heightened protection from discrimination. States are not allowed to defy the Constitution, period.

The federal government, of course, isn't allowed to defy the Constitution either, which is why marriage equality must be recognized by states and the federal government alike. Just so that we're clear, however, leaving marriage up to the states would actually be an improvement from the status quo.

[See a collection of political cartoons on gay marriage.]

The whole point of the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act is to impose Washington, D.C.'s one-size-fits-all view upon couples that don't want some Washington bureaucrat to stand between them and the marriage altar. Because of the Defense of Marriage Act's big government takeover of marriage, same sex couples must now appeal to a nine person, unelected, unaccountable "marriage panel" that will decide whether they get to have the same marriage rights as anyone else. The time has come to repeal and replace this job-killing, Washington takeover of marriage with common-sense, family-centered marriage equality.

Ian Millhiser

About Ian Millhiser Policy Analyst with the Center for American Progress

Tags
marriage
LGBT rights
Supreme Court

Other Arguments

#2
208 Pts
Married Couples Must Have Equal Rights in Every State

No – Married Couples Must Have Equal Rights in Every State

Evan Wolfson Founder and President of Freedom to Marry

#3
179 Pts
All Marriages Need to Be Treated Equally Under the Law

No – All Marriages Need to Be Treated Equally Under the Law

Stacey Long Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

#4
174 Pts
The Freedom to Marry Transcends State Lines

No – The Freedom to Marry Transcends State Lines

Casey Pick Programs Director for Log Cabin Republicans

#5
-124 Pts
Marriage Should Not Be Regulated by the Federal Government

Yes – Marriage Should Not Be Regulated by the Federal Government

Jason Kuznicki Research Fellow at the Cato Institute

#6
-348 Pts
The Federal Government Has the Right to Define Marriage

No – The Federal Government Has the Right to Define Marriage

Brian Brown President of the National Organization for Marriage

You Might Also Like


See More