Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Judge says no to voters saying no to a judge saying no . . .

In California today a federal judge struck down Prop. 8. CNN story here.

This means that a judge rejected the voter approved initiative, which rejected an early court ruling, which rejected California law, which rejected the recognition of the marriage between two people of the same sex.

There are subtle legal issues to discuss, but not to discuss here. What I'd like to raise here is a concern with this type of decisions. I think the courts provide a strong mechanism for ensuring civil rights are upheld, but I think they are a poor vehicle for establishing civil rights. Rather, I think public opinion must be swayed. The tug of war nature of litigation, as so well illustrated in this controversy, is a limitation on the power of litigation to cause change.

What do others think; especially those who saw Brown & Roe change the political landscape?

1 comment:

  1. BTW, this comes after a federal judge in Arizona refused to throw out a case claiming discrimination against GLBT employees cause by Arizona eliminating its domestic partner benefits. Could the wind be changing?