Marriage is being challenged once again, this time in the United States Supreme Court. On March 26, 2013, the Court heard arguments against Proposition 8, the California’s state constitutional amendment, passed by popular vote by the residents of California. This amendment defines marriage as being one man and one woman. The very next day, March 27, 2013, the Court heard a case that challenges the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA); this law was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996 after Congress passed it with an “overwhelming bipartisan majority.” DOMA defines marriage as being one man and one woman and states that no state must recognize a same-sex marriage performed in another state.
President Barack Obama first supported DOMA but then “evolved” to support same-sex marriage. Then the Department of Justice announced in February 2011 that it would no longer defend the law; now it is urging the Supreme Court to overthrow this law. In “normal times” the Justice Department defends federal law, but this administration is different. Hans von Spakovsky of The Heritage Foundation explained, “But now we have a Justice Department so politicized that it is actually arguing against federal statutes in court, and doing so not based upon the dictates of the law – for example, the Supreme Court has never applied the heightened scrutiny that the government argues is required – but based on the apparent policy preferences and political ideology of this administration. So much for taking care that the laws be faithfully executed….
“The Justice Department should not be sandbagging duly enacted federal laws in court because it disagrees with the policy. As Mr. Obama’s own prior position indicates, there were legitimate bases for the government to favor traditional marriage. The administration has gone from saying it would leave the defense of DOMA up to Congress to now trying to actively thwart and sabotage that very defense of DOMA being asserted by Congress on behalf of the federal government and American taxpayers. It is this kind of legally bizarre behavior that has led many to conclude that this is the most politicized Justice Department in living memory, which given DOJ’s enormous power, is a very dangerous threat to our concept of ordered liberty and adherence to the rule of law.”
The question of same-sex unions has been debated for years. Congress, the representatives of the people in Washington, D.C., voted overwhelmingly to defend marriage between one man and one woman in passing DOMA, and citizens in 41 states have amended their state constitutions to state that marriage is between one man and one woman. This question should not even be in the courts!
Marriage has existed for thousands of years to bring a man and a woman together as husband and wife. This marriage policy comes directly from God, not from any man or any group of men; God ordained marriage in order that the children produced from that union will have a father and a mother to love them and care for them. God performed the marriage that united Adam and Eve, and marriage has been important to society since the Garden of Eden. This is the reason why marriage has existed all over the world and has endured for so many years.
In the Proclamation to the World on the family, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaimed in 1995 that “marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children….
“The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity….”
In the most recent General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held in October 2012, four different members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles were prompted to speak about marriage and family:
Elder L. Tom Perry stated, “The joining together of a man and a woman to be legally and lawfully wed not only is preparation for future generations to inherit the earth, but it also brings the greatest joy and satisfaction that can be found in this mortal experience.”
Elder Dallin H. Oaks counseled, “Children need the emotional and personal strength that come from being raised by two parents who are united in their marriage and their goals.”
Elder Quentin L. Cook said, “The foundation of kindness and civility begins in our homes. It is not surprising that our public discourse has declined in equal measure with the breakdown of the family.”
Elder D. Todd Christofferson taught, “We have much to do to strengthen marriage in societies that increasingly trivialize its importance and purpose.”
According to these Prophets and Apostles, marriage has a divine purpose. God ordained marriage to bless all of His children and to provide the circumstances where children can be born and reared in the best possible circumstances. No President of the United States (or other nation) or Justice Department or even Supreme Court has the authority to re-define marriage to suit their own personal desires or agendas. We all need to accept the fact that marriage has already been defined by God as being between one man and one woman.