7th Circuit Court Judges rip same-sex marriage ban at hearing
As the fight for marriage equality enters higher court rooms around the nation, a similar theme of anti-equality arguments being ripped apart by judges keeps occurring.
Back in May, when Virginia’s ban on same-sex marriage went before the Fourth Circuit court of appeals, Judge Roger L. Gregory noticeably targeted those who supported the ban.
After those defending the ban argued marriage exists to help procreation, The judge seemed to mock the theory. “People are baby-makers?” he asked and then called the idea “totalitarian” and said procreation is not in the constitution.
Finally Gregory asked those supporting the ban about the number of children waiting to be adopted and if it was fair to deny same-sex parents the chance to take them in to their families. “Why does Virginia want to rip that away?”
Well over in the 7th circuit court of appeals in Chicago, A three-judge panel of judges Richard Posner, Ann Claire Williams, and David F. Hamilton heard arguments against Wisconsin and Indian’s bans on same-sex marriage.
The judge’s commentary was similar to the Fourth Circuit’s. Have a look at some stand out quotes below, and listen to the full audio from the hearing at the bottom of the post.
Quotes via Freedom to Marry
Judge Posner: “Suppose you’ve been adopted by same-sex parents and you come home one day from school and you say, ‘You know, all of the other kids in class have a mom and a dad. I just have two moms or two dads – what’s that about?’ And suppose the parents say, ‘In our society, an adult can marry a person of the opposite sex or a person of the same sex. But it’s marriage in both cases – your classmates’ parents are married, your parents are married. There’s nothing to worry about.’ Contrast that with the same situation, but the parents have to say, ‘Well, we’re your parents, but we’re not allowed to be married.’ It’s just a difference. Which do you think is better for the psychological welfare of this child – the married same-sex couple or the unmarried couple?’”
Judge Hamilton: “I’d like to follow up on this question about intended pregnancies. You said in your brief that ‘Marriage attracts and then regulates couples whose sexual conduct may create children in order to ameliorate the burden society ultimately bears when unintended children are not properly cared for.’ Why is that burden limited to unintended children? When we talk about intended prengancies, that may be a fleeting intent. I would think that the state’s interest is equal whether the children or intended or unintended.”
Judge Posner: “Why do you prefer heterosexual adoption to homosexual adoption? Of course you do: You give all sorts of benefits to the heterosexual adoptive parents and no benefits for the homosexual adoptive parents. You have to have a reason for that.” Solicitor General Fischer: “The benefits that you’re talking about are not triggered by sexuality – they’re triggered by marital status.” Judge Posner: “Oh come on now, you’re going in circles.”
Judge Williams: “Would you agree that marriage is not just about having children, but about raising children? You agree, those are two components?” Fischer: “Yes.” Judge Williams: “Then are you saying that same-sex couples cannot successfully raise children?” Fischer: Absoltuely not. Judge Williams: “Well if Indiana’s law is about successfully raising children, and you agree that same-sex couples can successfully raise children, why shouldn’t the ban be lifted as to them?” Fischer: “I think the assumption is that with opposite-sex couples, there is very little thought given during the sexual act sometimes as to whether babies may be a consequence.” Judge Williams: “So, because gay and homosexual couples actually choose to be parents, choose to take on that obligation, that difference of choice is set up differently than accidental? Here are people who actually want to have children – know that they want to
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