Written by: Taylor Stone
Injustice occurs when the federal government tries to take away a state’s constitutional right to determine legislation on certain issues, such as same-sex marriage.
Recently, Federal Judge Terece C. Kern ruled that the ban against same-sex marriage in Oklahoma is unconstitutional.
The 10th Amendment of our Constitution states that “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
So why has Oklahoma’s ban on same-sex marriage become so controversial? A decade ago, not even one state allowed legal same-sex marriages. Since then, 17 states have legalized an ongoing movement for “equality.”
The Oklahoma amendment in question states that “marriage in this state shall consist only of the union of one man and one woman.”
Sounds simple enough, right?
According to Kern, the Oklahoma amendment to prevent gay marriage is “an arbitrary, irrational exclusion of just one class of Oklahoma citizens from a governmental benefit.” Kern further ruled that the constitutional amendment of the state of Oklahoma prohibiting same-sex marriage violated the U.S. constitution.
The right to determine whether or not a state will legalize same-sex marriage belongs to each state individually, which is exactly why there is such a divide across the country. In reality, the ruling prohibiting Oklahoma’s right to outlaw gay marriage is, in fact, the only true violation of the Constitution.
State Supreme Courts in states like New Mexico and New Jersey have ruled in favor of same-sex marriage under the guise that discrimination is illegal under state constitutions.
This isn’t about if you support same-sex marriages or not. It’s about the fact that the right to decide such issues lies in the hands of lawmakers within each individual state.
Is it immoral to deny certain citizens the right to legally marry? Most people would argue yes. Is it unconstitutional to deny same-sex couples the right to marry? Absolutely not.
We simply cannot convolute this issue to such an extent as to retract the rights of each state, which are reserved by the constitution. Right now, states like Oklahoma and Indiana are being met with resistance, while states that have legalized these marriages are permitted to keep their rights by doing so.
If lawmakers within a state decide to legalize same-sex marriage, then by all means, go for it. But if lawmakers within another state simultaneously decide to outlaw same-sex marriage, they are perfectly within their constitutional power to do so and should be extended the same courtesy of not having their rights revoked on the grounds of “hurting feelings” or “doing the right thing.”
As we all know, right and wrong means is different for everyone.
According to your logic, Loving v Virginia is equally unconstitutional and states should be governed by mob rule. Whatever the majority says goes, and minorities without a strong enough voice to defend themselves should be subjected to the tyranny of the majority, is that it? Why even bother to have a judicial branch?