Quantcast


Twitter icon


Facebook icon

About this site
About us
Our beliefs
Is this your first visit?
Contact us
External links

Recommended books

Visitors' essays
Our forum
New essays
Other features
Buy a CD of this site
Vital notes

World religions
BUDDHISM
CHRISTIANITY
-Christian definition
 -Shared beliefs
 -Handling change
 -Bible topics
 -Bible inerrancy
 -Bible harmony
 -Interpret the Bible
 -Persons
 -Beliefs & creeds
 -Da Vinci code
 -Revelation, 666
 -Denominations
HINDUISM
ISLAM
JUDAISM
WICCA / WITCHCRAFT
Other religions
Cults and NRMs
Comparing Religions

Non-theistic beliefs
Atheism
Agnosticism
Humanism
Other

About all religions
Main topics
Basic information
Gods & Goddesses
Handling change
Doubt & security
Quotes
Movies
Confusing terms
Glossary
End of the World?
True religion?
Seasonal events
Science vs. Religion
More information

Spiritual/ethics
Spirituality
Morality & ethics
Absolute truth

Peace/conflict
Attaining peace
Religious tolerance
Religious freedom
Religious hatred
Religious conflict
Religious violence

"Hot" topics
Very hot topics
Ten Commandments
Abortion access
Assisted suicide
Cloning
Death penalty
Environment

Same-sex marriage

Homosexuality
Human rights
Gays in the military
Nudism
Origins
Sex & gender
Sin
Spanking
Stem cells
Transexuality
Women-rights
Other topics

Laws and news
Religious laws
Religious news

Sponsored links

 

!!!!!!!! Search error!  If the URL ends something like .htm/  or .htm# delete the character(s) after .htm and hit return.

Florida: Recognition of same-sex relationships and LGBT equality

Part 3: Lawsuit to legalize SSM in Florida
state court (Cont'd). Reactions: pro and con

horizontal rule

Sponsored link.

horizontal rule

This topic is a continuation from the previous essay

horizontal rule

2014-JAN-21: Six same-sex couples launch lawsuit in state court seeking marriage equality (Cont'd):

Some personal comments by plaintiffs:

 4

Governor Rick Scott (R) supports the ban that prevents loving, committed same-sex couples to marry. Former state Senator Nan Rich (D) is challenging Scott in the 2014 elections. He has long supported SSM. Former Governor Charlie Crist who was a Republican at the time of the plebiscite, is now a Democrat and supports the repeal of the constitutional amendment. He said:

"No one would want to be told they can’t marry the person they love. It’s an issue of fairness and I’m proud to support ... [the lawsuit]." 2

Shannon Minter of the NCLR referred to the increase in support for SSM over the interval 2008 to 2014, saying:

"What’s happened over that time period is a real awakening by most people in Florida to the humanity of lesbian and gay people and their families. Those families have been so much more visible and present, not just in the news but in people’s everyday lives. As people have gotten to know these couples and their children, the fear factor has diminished greatly. There’s just been in our whole country, including Florida, a kind of collective realization that these really are families pretty much like other families and [that] they need the same kinds of protections."  2

Referring to the 2013-2014 decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court which declared Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act to be unconstitutional, and the more recent decisions by federal District Courts in Oklahoma and Utah which legalized SSM, Minter said:

"That really changes the landscape enormously and lays a very strong foundation for courts and other places to draw upon." 2

The lawsuit has been assigned to Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel, a long-term specialist in family law. 1

horizontal rule

2014-JAN: Opposition to the lawsuit by conservative Christian groups:

  • Florida Family Policy Council: It is a conservative Christian group that opposes marriage equality and which played a major role in promoting the 2008 constitutional amendment. John Stemberger is the Council's president and general counsel. He referred to the amendment to ban same-sex marriages, saying:

    "Sixty-two percent of Floridians have decisively spoken on this issue. Gay activists cannot win in the marketplace, so they have resorted to trying to find renegade courts who have little respect for the rule of law to create social change that would never happen through the people or their elected representatives."

Stemberger based his statement on the 2008 vote which overwhelmingly approved the amendment to the state Constitution. Stemberger may not be aware of the rapid increase in support for same-sex marriage among Florida voters over the past five years, culminating in a plurality of voters by the end of 2013 who favor SSM and marriage equality.

He also said that the lawsuit:

"... is nothing more than a publicity stunt. ... Filed in Miami, it represents ‘forum shopping’ in the most liberal legal venue in the state. However, we are confident that Florida's Attorney General Pam Bondi will provide a vigorous defense of Florida's long held law and in doing so will expose the radical views and overreaching legal positions set forth in today's lawsuit." 2

  • Liberty Counsel: Founder and chairman, Mat Staver, and president, Anita Staver, announced their opposition to the lawsuit by six same-sex couples in Florida which challenges the year 2008 amendment to the state constitution. Mat Staver drafted the original amendment for the 2008 vote. He said:

    "Liberty Counsel will help to defend the Florida Marriage Protection Amendment. This amendment affirms the natural created order of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Marriage between a man and a woman forms the foundation of society and provides the best environment in which to raise children. It is a fact -- children do best when raised by a mother and a father."

    Even if marriage becomes available to same-sex couples in all 50 states, the vast majority of marriages will always be between members of the opposite sex for the simple reason that about 95% of adults are either heterosexual or bisexual. Some might suggest that the Stavers are assuming that the most common form of marriage is the only valid form.

He has obviously extracted his belief about the raising of children from the Mark Regnerus "family structures study" in Texas. It has been criticized as a deeply flawed study by numerous professional groups. Yet it is regularly cited by religious and social conservatives because it is the only recent major study that support their beliefs against SSM. The American Sociological Association filed an amicus brief in the Wilson v. United States lawsuit. That lawsuit resulted in Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) being declared unconstitutional. The Association commented on the Regnerus study and the "fact" that children do best when raised by a mother and a father:

"If any conclusion can be reached from Regnerus’ study, it is that family stability is predictive of child well-being. As Regnerus himself notes, family structure (for instance whether the family has a single parent or two parents), matters significantly to child outcomes. As the social science consensus described in Part I demonstrates, the evidence regarding children raised by same-sex parents overwhelmingly indicates that children raised by such families fare just as well as children raised by opposite-sex parents, and that children raised by same-sex parents are likely to benefit from the enhanced stability the institution of marriage would provide to their parents and families. All told, the Regnerus study, even as revised, does not undermine the consensus that children raised by same-sex parents fare just as well as those raised by opposite-sex parents." 6,7,8

  • Florida Ethic and Religious Liberty Commission: President Bill Bunkley affirmed his support of the constitutional amendment. He said:

    "Nothing will hinder our efforts to continue to contend for biblical values in the public square as it relates to the sanctity of marriage." 5

    By the term "sanctity of marriage" he apparently means marriage restricted to opposite-sex couples.

horizontal rule

Many more developments are expected in the future

horizontal rule

References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above menu. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Steve Rothaus, "Gay marriage case assigned to Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel, a veteran family law specialist," Miami Herald, 2014-JAN, at: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/
  2. Steve Rothaus, "Six South Florida gay couples sue in Miami-Dade circuit court for right to marry," Miami Herald, 2014-JAN-21, at: http://www.miamiherald.com/
  3. "Six Same-sex Couples Seek Freedom to Marry in FL," The Rainbow times, 2014-JAN-21, at: http://www.therainbowtimesmass.com/
  4. "Same-sex couples file lawsuit seeking freedom to marry," Miami Herald, 2014-JAN, at: https://www.youtube.com/
  5. Joni B. Hannigan, "Liberty Counsel pledges to defend Florida’s Marriage Protection Amendment," Florida Baptist Witness, 2014-JAN-21, at: http://www.gofbw.com/
  6. Peter Montgomery, "Sociologists slam Regnerus study in amicus brief," Religion Dispatches, 2013-MAR-01, at: http://www.religiondispatches.org/
  7. "Research Shows Parents’ Sexual Orientation Has No Bearing on Children’s Well-Being," American Sociological Association, 2013-FEB-28, at: http://www.asanet.org/
  8. Carmine D. Boccuzzi, Jr., "Amicus brief, United States v. Windsor," American Sociological Association, 2013-FEB-28, at: http://www.asanet.org/
  9. "Top Florida employers urge Legislature to pass Florida Competitive Workforce Act," Equality Florida, 2014-JAN-13, at: http://www.eqfl.org/

horizontal rule

Site navigation: Home > Homosexuality > Same-sex marriage > Menu > Florida > here

horizontal rule

Copyright © 2014 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2014-JAN-22
Latest update: 2014-JAN-23
Author: B.A. Robinson

line.gif (538 bytes)
Sponsored link

horizontal rule

Go to the previous page, or go to the "Same-sex marriage in Florida" menu or choose:

Google
Web ReligiousTolerance.org

Go to home page  We would really appreciate your help

E-mail us about errors, etc.  Purchase a CD of this web site

FreeFind search, lists of new essays...  Having problems printing our essays?

Twitter link

Facebook icon

Google Page Translator:

This page translator works on Firefox,
Opera, Chrome, and Safari browsers only

After translating, click on the "show
original" button at the top of this
page to restore page to English.

 

Sponsored links: