In the ongoing battle over the constitutionality of same-sex marriage, one judge has set the standard for being willing to uphold the rights of the state as preeminent over the right of the federal district court.
On Feb. 9th, Chief Justice Roy Moore defied a federal judge’s order to lift the ban on same sex marriage and ordered the state of Alabama’s probate judges not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. His reason for doing so was simple: to issue said licenses would be considered inconsistent with the 2006 Constitutional Amendment which banned same-sex marriages. An amendment that was passed by 81% of the citizens of Alabama.
His actions provoked a predictable firestorm from the LGBTQ community as well as the liberal officials and media, but it also galvanized the nation’s conservatives as one man seemingly took the establishment ‘head-on’.
Indeed, Alabama isn’t the only state to find itself in the undesirable position of trying to defend its duly elected DOMA laws from activist judges. On November 2, 2004, Arkansas voters approved a State initiated Constitutional Amendment (753,770 to 251,914) declaring marriage to be the union between one man and one woman. Currently, this law (originally signed by then Gov. Mike Huckabee) was overturned on Nov. 25th, 2014 by yet another federal district court. However, the Arkansas judge has stayed her ruling pending appeal.
As the anticipated ruling of the Supreme Court on same-sex marriage takes center stage, it is now up to concerned citizens to make their voices heard. Judge Moore has taken the initial step, and it is hopeful that others will follow. But while the rightful position of defending the constitution falls into the hands of others like Moore, it is the biblical worldview held by Christians throughout our nation that grants authority to define marriage firmly in the hands of the Creator God.
Dr. Jim Brettell, President of the newly formed Arkansas Pastors Network issues a clarion call to pastors and churches across the state, “At this time, the State of Arkansas is one of a few remaining States that holds a biblical view of marriage — one man and one woman. Seventy-five percent of Arkansans have spoken. Should one judge, or for that matter, any judge be able to violate the 10th Amendment to our US Constitution that clearly grants sovereignty to the states and declares that the federal government is not free to usurp authority that is not enumerated to them. Pastors and Arkansans need to stand together and raise their voices in one accord – ‘No same sex marriage in violation of the biblical view of marriage or in violation of constitutional law’.”