The Bigger Picture

by Ed Whelan

For reasons I have amply spelled out before, I regard today’s decision against DOMA as a grave act of judicial lawlessness, yet another usurpation by an imperial, and imperious, Supreme Court majority. As for the Prop 8 ruling against standing: I don’t think that it’s right, but if it is, the people of California have been victimized by an unremediable act of executive-branch lawlessness—the refusal of the governor and the attorney general to defend Prop 8.

In both cases, the proper exercise of sovereign authority has been unjustifiably thwarted—and on a matter of great significance. To restate my position on the broader question of marriage:

The collapse of our marriage culture in recent decades — a collapse that heterosexuals are largely responsible for — has brought with it all the social pathologies associated with divorce, out-of-wedlock births and single-parent families. Over the long term, the American experiment in ordered liberty cannot flourish amidst this collapse. It is time for all Americans to work to restore our marriage culture and to re-establish the inherent link between marriage and responsible procreation and child-rearing, rather than to redefine marriage to deny that vital link.

Bench Memos

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