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Congress slapped on the wrist for improperly enacting the views of the “moral majority.”

June 26, 2011

Although this was news last week, it is too important to ignore and so it is summarized here with my editorial comment:

“It’s OK to have your religious views/morals, just don’t impose them on others who believe differently.”

Holding the the federal Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) unconstitutional, The Judges of the US Bankruptcy Court  on June 13, 2011, resoundingly slapped Congress on the wrist for doing so, as follows.  The Court’s Memorandum of Decision speaks for itself:

“Although individual members of Congress have every right to express their views and the views of their constituents with respect to their religious beliefs and principles and their personal standards of who may marry whom, this court cannot conclude that Congress is entitled to solemnize such views in the laws of this nation in disregard of the views, legal status and living arrangements of a significant segment of our citizenry that includes the Debtors in this case. To do so violates the Debtors’ right to equal protection of those laws embodied in the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment.

“… In the court’s final analysis, the government’s only basis for supporting DOMA comes down to an apparent belief that the moral views of the majority may properly be enacted as the law of the land in regard to state-sanctioned same-sex marriage in disregard of the personal status and living conditions of a significant segment of our pluralistic society. Such a view is not consistent with the evidence or the law as embodied in the Fifth Amendment with respect to the thoughts expressed in this decision. The court has no doubt about its conclusion: the Debtors have made their case persuasively that DOMA deprives them of the equal protection of the law to which they are entitled. The court is of the opinion that the Debtors have met their high burden of overcoming the presumption of the constitutionality of DOMA. ”

In re Balas and Morales, US Bankruptcy Court, Central District, Case no. 2:11-bk-17831-TD, Memorandum of Decision, filed and entered 6/13/11, p. 19, l. 3 to p. 20, l. 2.

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