North Texas Daily

Proposition 8 makes it to the Supreme Court

Proposition 8 makes it to the Supreme Court

March 26
22:58 2013

Andrew Freeman / Staff Writer

Proposition 8, the referendum passed in 2008 banning same-sex marriage in California, is being fought in the Supreme Court and is one of 10 cases the Supreme Court chose to hear.

In an effort to show support for gay rights, many have taken to Facebook, and changed their profile picture to an equal sign with a red background symbolizing peace and equality.

The symbol spread through popular social media sites so rapidly that 13 members of Congress – all Democrats – changed their avatars to the symbol, according to the Denver Post.

According to a 2011 study by the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law’s Williams Institute found that about 9 million Americans are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, the AP reports.

Students at UNT have voiced different opinions on the issue.

Sociology senior Jarrell Wilson said he doesn’t know why same-sex marriage is still an issue in the U.S.

“We should learn from our past and stop the madness of hate and discrimination,” Wilson said. “Using the Bible to legislate morality should not be allowed in a democracy.”

History and political science senior Elizabeth Goins said her beliefs say that marriage is between a woman and a man.

“I love everybody no matter what their orientation is but in my opinion homosexuality is wrong and they’re sadly misguided,” Goins said. “No matter what Lady Gaga says I don’t believe they are born that way I believe it’s a choice.”

Undeclared business sophomore Elizabeth Angle believes it’s about principles rather than religion or politics.

”It makes me so sad that my homosexual friends can’t get married when the love they share is sometimes much stronger than the love shared by my heterosexual friends,” Angle said. “I’m a Christian and believe no one should be banned from making a promise before God by society.”

Economics senior and Chair of the North Texas College Republicans Joshua McDaniel said that his views are reflected through the organization he represents.

“The integrity and sanctity of the institution of marriage should be protected at all levels of the government,” McDaniel said. “That’s what the Republican platform states, that’s what we believe and what I believe.”

The legislation being fought challenges the Defense Of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. But before that can happen, the court must decide if the case even has standing.

“Standing is whether a party has the right to represent the side they want to represent,” said Jared Perkins, a pre-doctoral political science student.  “They may end up dismissing the case.”

If the courts can get past the standing issue, other questions will be answered, Perkins said.

“Can a state ban same sex marriage?” Perkins said. “Is it a fundamental right granted by the Constitution?”

However, there are other issues complicating the matter.

“It’s such a heated, polarized issue,” Perkins said. “There is a lot of public opinion about it. Not everyone feels same sex marriage is constitutional.”

Gay marriage has already been approved in nine states — Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, Washington — and the District of Columbia.

But 30 states have amended their constitutions to prohibit same-sex marriage, with New Mexico not taking a stand on the issue, the AP reports. North Carolina was the most recent example last May.

The Pew Research Center found that 49 percent of Americans favor legal marriage for same-sex couples compared to 44 percent who are opposed.

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