Argument against gay marriage in California hinges on accidental pregnancies

Mar 4, 2013 | Posted by: DNF | Full story: news.yahoo.com

In a brief filed with the Supreme Court last week, the Obama administration slammed the unusual legal argument now key in the movement against gay marriage: that gay couples cannot become accidentally pregnant and thus do not need access to marriage.

The argument has become the centerpiece of two major cases addressing gay marriage that the Supreme Court will consider at the end of March, Hollingsworth v. Perry, a challenge to California’s gay marriage ban, and United States v. Windsor, which seeks to overturn the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

"Only a man and a woman can beget a child together without advance planning, which means that opposite-sex couples have a unique tendency to produce unplanned and unintended offspring," wrote Paul Clement, a prominent attorney representing congressional Republicans in the DOMA case.

Clement added in his brief to the Supreme Court arguing to uphold that law that the government has a legitimate interest in solely recognizing marriages between men and women because it encourages them to form stable family units. "Because same-sex relationships cannot naturally produce offspring, they do not implicate the State’s interest in responsible procreation and childrearing in the same way that opposite-sex relationships do," attorneys who are seeking to uphold Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in California in 2008, argued in their brief. The opponents to gay marriage also argue it's possible the public perception of marriage would change if gay couples were allowed to wed, discouraging straight people from marrying.

In the administration's friend of the court brief, the Justice Department took a dim view of the argument. "Marriage is far more than a societal means of dealing with unintended pregnancies," the Justice Department wrote. The brief also argued that preventing gay couples from marrying would not help or hurt the quest to encourage straight couples to marry when they have children.

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david traversa

Cordoba, Argentina

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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Desperation indeed ! Never have I heard anything so absurd and contrived ..

“Adam and Steve”

Since: Aug 08

Earth

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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These two statements by Paul Clement seem to be contradictory:

"Only a man and a woman can beget a child together without advance planning, which means that opposite-sex couples have a unique tendency to produce unplanned and unintended offspring."

"Because same-sex relationships cannot naturally produce offspring, they do not implicate the State’s interest in responsible procreation and childrearing in the same way that opposite-sex relationships do."

So, are “unplanned and unintended offspring” considered “responsible procreation and childrearing?” A remarkable train of thought given that 40% of child births is to unmarried parents, or to single mothers (much higher in some minority communities).

It would seem to me that same-sex couples planning a family, by whatever method, are more in line with “responsible procreation and childrearing.”
Christina

Mesa, AZ

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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Truly fricking pathetic. So he's trying to say that senior citizens who are beyond child bearing age can't get married? What a load of bs. They're fighting a losing battle and are clinging to straws
Xavier Breath

Hoboken, NJ

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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"The opponents to gay marriage also argue it's possible the public perception of marriage would change if gay couples were allowed to wed, discouraging straight people from marrying."

What a steaming pile of horseshit! I can't believe these people will actually try to argue that in front of SCOTUS.

“Equality First”

Since: Jan 09

St. Louis, MO

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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Suppose a man and a woman are married and have a child. The mother dies. The man decides to live up to his previously hidden identity as a gay man. By implication, the reason cited means that he could only marry a woman who he does not love. That does not indicate a strong and supportive family to me. However, should he be able to marry the man he loves, that could produce such a family. Their argument is specious.

DNF

“A seat at the family table”

Since: Apr 07

Born in Newark, Ohio

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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Christina wrote:
Truly fricking pathetic. So he's trying to say that senior citizens who are beyond child bearing age can't get married? What a load of bs. They're fighting a losing battle and are clinging to straws
Like my own Dad and Step mother. They married and are 'beyond child bearing years'. BTW when my Mom died she left me her wedding ring for the time when me and my partner could get legally married.

The idea of equating marriage to the possibility of a condom breaking is absurd. It almost sounds to me like he's saying the only "real wedding" is a shotgun one!

DNF

“A seat at the family table”

Since: Apr 07

Born in Newark, Ohio

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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If Mr. Clement wants to tap dance he needs more practice.

http://www.youtube.com/watch...

“... from a ...”

Since: Mar 09

GREAT HEIGHT

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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The Koch brothers' Catholic supper buddies on the SCOTUS will have no trouble gulping that argument down with a soup ladle.
Xavier Breath

Hoboken, NJ

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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Call Your Rev Obuma wrote:
<quoted text>
You have no statistics to back up your baseless last sentence assertion. I on the other hand have enough examples as to why you should never be allowed to raise children. Its called millions of years of trial and error and you are the constant error in numbers.
You don't have shit, retardo.

Since: Apr 08

Chagrin Falls, OH

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Call Your Rev Obuma wrote:
<quoted text>
You have no statistics to back up your baseless last sentence assertion. I on the other hand have enough examples as to why you should never be allowed to raise children. Its called millions of years of trial and error and you are the constant error in numbers.
There have been LGBT parents raising kids as long as there have been parents raising kids. It's hardly a new thing.
just a thought

Maumelle, AR

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Throughout all these absurd arguments, two things keep coming to mind. First perhaps one of the Almighty's reasons for creating gays is to slow down all this procreation whether intended or not as the world is hugely overpopulated and we no longer need to be fruitful and multiply.
Second, who will there be to adopt and love and cherish all the unintended, unplanned babies produced by heteros??? Obviously not them as the orphanages are always overflowing. I can see this all working out for the better for all concerned if we can just quell the nonsensical, homo-spouting, hate-filled religious and non bigots.

“TAKIA AND TA TONKA”

Since: Aug 08

HAPPY TOGETHER!!!

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Call Your Rev Obuma wrote:
<quoted text>
You have no statistics to back up your baseless last sentence assertion. I on the other hand have enough examples as to why you should never be allowed to raise children. Its called millions of years of trial and error and you are the constant error in numbers.
You have NOTHING.......and neither do the proponents of Prop 8 or Clements!!!
Rainbow Kid

Alpharetta, GA

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There is no question asking if you are preggers on a marriage license application
.
That would imply that premarital sex is OK. The church ladies would freak if such a question was asked
.
Clement needs to hush before some irate church lady flogs him with her purse

“Marriage Equality”

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Lakeland, MI

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from the article, "The opponents to gay marriage also argue it's possible the public perception of marriage would change if gay couples were allowed to wed, discouraging straight people from marrying."

Really?? And hate-mongering and demonizing gay people and reducing married couples to nothing more than government-sanctioned baby factories doesn't discourage anyone from wishing to marry?? That doesn't cheapen marriage's reputation but allowing loving couples that can't accidentally get pregnant to marry does???

I know *FOUR* straight couples that wish to marry, but are putting it off because they have gay loved ones that are barred from doing the same. They don't feel right about marrying as long as their loved ones cannot.

THAT is the only thing that will discourage straight people from marrying--the unjust banning of those they love from doing the same.

You'd think the anti-marriage crowd would have ceased amazing me with their stupidity by now, but so far, no.

“ WOOF !”

Since: Nov 12

Coolidge, AZ

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Mar 4, 2013
 
There's an argument ?!

Since: Jun 11

AOL

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While a different case, this argument has already been destroyed in Gill v OPM:

"But even if Congress believed at the time of DOMA's passage that children had the best chance at success if raised jointly by their biological mothers and fathers, a desire to encourage heterosexual couples to procreate and rear their own children more responsibly would not provide a rational basis for denying federal recognition to same-sex marriages. Such denial does nothing to promote stability in heterosexual parenting. Rather, it "prevents children of same-sex couples from enjoying the immeasurable advantages that flow from the assurance of a stable family structure, when afforded equal recognition under federal law.

Moreover, an interest in encouraging responsible procreation plainly cannot provide a rational basis upon which to exclude same-sex marriages from federal recognition because, as Justice Scalia pointed out, the ability to procreate is not now, nor has it ever been, a precondition to marriage in any state in the country. Indeed, "the sterile and the elderly" have never been denied the right to marry by any of the fifty states. And the federal government has never considered denying recognition to marriage based on an ability or inability to procreate.

Similarly, Congress' asserted interest in defending and nurturing heterosexual marriage is not "grounded in sufficient factual context for this court to ascertain some relation" between it and the classification DOMA effects.

What remains, therefore, is the possibility that Congress sought to deny recognition to same-sex marriages in order to make heterosexual marriage appear more valuable or desirable. But the extent that this was the goal, Congress has achieved it "only by punishing same-sex couples who exercise their rights under state law." And this the Constitution does not permit. "For if the constitutional conception of 'equal protection of the laws' means anything, it must at the very least mean" that the Constitution will not abide such "a bare congressional desire to harm a politically unpopular group."

http://docfiles.justia.com/cases/federal/dist...

“Marriage Equality”

Since: Dec 07

Lakeland, MI

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Edio wrote:
These two statements by Paul Clement seem to be contradictory:
"Only a man and a woman can beget a child together without advance planning, which means that opposite-sex couples have a unique tendency to produce unplanned and unintended offspring."
"Because same-sex relationships cannot naturally produce offspring, they do not implicate the State’s interest in responsible procreation and childrearing in the same way that opposite-sex relationships do."
So, are “unplanned and unintended offspring” considered “responsible procreation and childrearing?” A remarkable train of thought given that 40% of child births is to unmarried parents, or to single mothers (much higher in some minority communities).
It would seem to me that same-sex couples planning a family, by whatever method, are more in line with “responsible procreation and childrearing.”
They HAVE to use double-speak and smokescreens like that because if you think about their arguments too much, you'll quickly see that they don't have any arguments.

My favorite response to that is, "What about the children that WERE planned by their parents?? Don't THOSE children also deserve the equal treatment and protections for their families that the ones that 'OOPS!! got knocked up' enjoy??"

To which the response is always a VERY indignant and offended, "OF COURSE THEY DO!!! What??? Do you think I'm some sort of monster or something???" (well, yes, but let's continue here....)

Then my next question is, "So what about the hundreds of thousands of children are ALREADY being raised in families headed by same-sex couples that absolutely, positively PLANNED to have those children? Why should those children have their families shut out from all those protections?? Don't they deserve those same protections??"

I have YET to get a response to that one. Usually they start calling me names or just wonder off with their outrage at having been so easily proven foolish and bigoted.

Let's hope a majority of the Supremes see it as a foolish argument, too.(Scalia and Thomas won't, for sure, but there's still hope for the rest of them....)

“TAKIA AND TA TONKA”

Since: Aug 08

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eJohn wrote:
from the article, "The opponents to gay marriage also argue it's possible the public perception of marriage would change if gay couples were allowed to wed, discouraging straight people from marrying."
Really?? And hate-mongering and demonizing gay people and reducing married couples to nothing more than government-sanctioned baby factories doesn't discourage anyone from wishing to marry?? That doesn't cheapen marriage's reputation but allowing loving couples that can't accidentally get pregnant to marry does???
I know *FOUR* straight couples that wish to marry, but are putting it off because they have gay loved ones that are barred from doing the same. They don't feel right about marrying as long as their loved ones cannot.
THAT is the only thing that will discourage straight people from marrying--the unjust banning of those they love from doing the same.
You'd think the anti-marriage crowd would have ceased amazing me with their stupidity by now, but so far, no.
To try and tie procreation directly to marriage would mean denying the right to marry to heterosexuals past the natural childbearing years and to infertile/sterile heterosexuals.......wouldn't that be considered discrimination?

Both marriage and procreation are FUNDAMENTAL rights, but they DON'T go hand in hand......look at these cases more closely and you will see:
Skinner vs Oklahoma--about the right to procreate regardless of one's IQ.

Loving vs Virginia---about the right to marry regardless of skin color.

Griswold vs Connecticut-----about a right to use birth control(really stifles the procreation argument)

Zablocki vs Rehail--about one's right to marry regardless of having a previous child and not paying support!!!

All of these cases discuss Marriage and Procreation as FUNDAMENTAL rights......not that they are tied together!!!

“Marriage Equality”

Since: Dec 07

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Xavier Breath wrote:
"The opponents to gay marriage also argue it's possible the public perception of marriage would change if gay couples were allowed to wed, discouraging straight people from marrying."
What a steaming pile of horseshit! I can't believe these people will actually try to argue that in front of SCOTUS.
And yet, they will!! They're just THAT stupid.

“ WOOF !”

Since: Nov 12

Coolidge, AZ

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Mar 4, 2013
 

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eJohn wrote:
<quoted text>
And yet, they will!! They're just THAT stupid.
No. A laywer is ethically and morally obligated to present his clients' case to the best of his ability, even if the case is indefensible, and teh resulting arguments for that client are ridiculous.

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