BTW, they're still taping this trial. Hopefully someday soon there will be a decision to release them. That or somebody will accidentally leave them out where someone can find them.
Originally Posted by NathanATX
Is anyone clear about this case? The specifics about what is being tried? What the risks are of a negative decision, etc.?
Here's my primer post
on Perry v Schwarzenegger. (None of the below comes from the post.)
Plaintiffs (a lesbian couple and gay couple both denied marriage licenses) argue that Prop 8 is unconstitutional, citing the 14th amendment and making the case that gays are both a suspect classification and a protected class, a finding that the Court has heretofore not made. Proof of this is being shown now with emphasis on the effects of homophobia to the homosexual and to society. Religious oppression is being given as a main reason for this oppression.
Prop 8 was especially vulnerable because it established four distinct classes of California citizens.
1. Straight and permitted to marry and divorce at will.
2. Gay and not permitted to marry.
3. Gay and married, permitted to divorce but not remarry.
4. Gay and married in another state, not permitted to divorce or remarry.
(I personally know people in each group.)
Some are suggesting that if/when Perry gets to the Supreme Court, their decision may be narrow enough to only effect California. I tend to think they're probably right (cynic that I am), but that if they go our way (optimist that I am) Perry could be used as precedent in future challenges to marriage restrictions. I also think it could be used as precedent for DOMA, DADT, ENDA, and challenges to other oppressive laws.
In other words, this could be our Brown v Board of Education.
If we lose at the Supreme Court, there are two possibilities which are not mutually exclusive.
1. It might be a few years before the Court would be willing to accept a case challenging marriage restriction. It was almost 20 years between the failed 1980s challenge to sodomy laws and the successful challenge in 2003.
2. It might galvanize our people and our supporters as Prop 8's passage did and lead more into more public action.
I know many people (including myself) who were fairly disconnected before November 2008 but who have awakened. Most in that group, in my experience, are under 40. I think that age is significant; these are people who didn't experience Stonewall or the White Night Riot. They (probably) hadn't experienced the government specifically and openly targeting them. They also hadn't experienced the height of the HIV/AIDS panic in the 1980s.
So Prop 8, which was unique among marriage amendments in that it didn't preemptively refuse rights but actively stripped them, was a big shock. The Supreme Court ruling that it is constitutionally permissible so to do would be an exponentially bigger shock.
As I said in a previous post, I think that if Perry gets to the Supreme Court, it's a win no matter what. I prefer a direct win, but if we lose, you'll see a mobilization that will shock the nation.
Hopefully it'll even include some straight people. (But that's another thread.)