The debate over same-sex marriage took a significant step forward this week, with the completion of closing arguments in the San Francisco trial over the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the statewide ban on gay marriage Californians approved in 2008. Supporters of Prop. 8 say voters have every right to decide that the state should only recognize traditional marriages, while opponents say the ban denies same-sex couples a basic civil right. U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker will give a ruling later this summer. Which side is expected to win? (Watch an AP report about the close of the Prop. 8 trial)
Judge Walker will almost certainly overturn Prop. 8: This trial is a lock in favor of gay marriage, says Andrew Cohen in Politics Daily. The defenders of Prop. 8 presented a shockingly "odd" and "weak case," with "hapless" witnesses and precious little evidence. The proponents, meanwhile, offered up 17 witnesses and a strong factual record. If "evidence matters to" Judge Walker, he has "virtually no other choice" but to strike down Prop. 8.
"California same-sex marriage trial: An uneven matchup"
If Prop. 8 loses it's because the judge is biased: The "openly homosexual" Judge Walker "came into this courtroom strongly inclined to rule against Prop. 8," says Maggie Gallagher, president of the National Organization for Marriage, quoted at LifeSiteNews.com. He was "extremely open" to the anti-Prop. 8 case, and seemed baffled by our side's argument that procreation is what marriage is all about. Walker probably "will overturn Prop. 8" — not because of the arguments in the courtroom, but because of his own bias.
"Prop. 8 trial wraps up with grim prospects for marriage defenders"
Walker's decision won't be the last word on gay marriage: No matter how Judge Walker rules, says Steven Stamstad in The Huffington Post, the debate will go on. The losing side will "undoubtedly" take their case to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and then the Supreme Court. That means "years of court battles to come," making this race to equality "more... a marathon, than... a sprint."
"Achieving marriage rights for same-sex couples is a marathon not a sprint"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why the West should let Russia have eastern Ukraine
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- 9 Harvard dropouts who became fabulously successful
- 7 grammar rules you really should pay attention to
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
- What is Molly? Everything you need to know about the party drug
- The dangers of our passionless American life
- The real reason conservatives should be outraged that police killed a white youth
- 5 deliciously creative oats recipes
- Your literary playlist: A guide to the music of Haruki Murakami
Subscribe to the Week