Wednesday, April 1, 2009

NY State High Court to Hear Same-Sex Marriage Challenge

The Christian right wing group, Alliance Defense Fund, is getting its way. New York State's highest court agreed Tuesday to hear two cases challenging New York's recognition of same-sex marriage performed legally elsewhere, like Massachusetts, Connecticut and Canada.

Neither case involved Gov. David A. Paterson’s directive last May that ordered state agencies to recognize legal same-sex marriages performed outside New York State.

One case, Godfrey v. Spano, stems from the Westchester County executive’s 2006 decision to begin officially honoring out-of-state marriage licenses for gay couples the same way it did for heterosexual couples.

The other case, Lewis v. New York State Department of Civil Service, was filed after the department agreed in 2007 to begin recognizing out-of-state, same-sex marriages for the purpose of extending health insurance to spouses of public employees.

Brian Raum, senior legal counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, said Tuesday that the group believed that the Court of Appeals would reverse the lower courts in both cases.

“We’re confident that we’re on the right side of the law,” Brian Raum, senior legal counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund told the New York Times. “The law in New York states it will not recognize marriages that conflict with public policy in New York. Since New York only recognizes marriage between one man and one woman, for any court to recognize same-sex marriage would be to recognize marriages that run contrary to New York law.”

Lambda Legal is representing Westchester County and the civil service department.

“I think the rulings in the lower courts were correct and consistent with all the other prevailing decisions in the state,” said Susan Sommer of Lamda Legal. “I’m looking forward to making the same arguments to the high court so we can ask it to affirm those same arguments that have prevailed in all other cases.”

UTF finds that its ironic that the Alliance Defense Fund motto is "Defending Our First Liberty." I gather from their website what they mean by "first" is the liberty to hear and speak the truth.

Whose truth? Whose liberty? Obviously theirs, because they don't care if they trample on anyone else's already given liberty to "defend" their own. The state of New York has already ruled to recognize same-sex marriages legally performed elsewhere.

What does this have to do with them? Nothing. But for some insane obsessive reason, they'll insert themselves into the situation and do anything to keep gays from marrying. I'll have to give them this - they are motivated to stick to their mission. But I'd like to suggest them a slight change. "Defending Our First Liberty - And Trampling All Others."

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