Anita Bryant at a rally to repeal

Dade County’s gay rights ordinance


The Christian Family Coalition of Florida is permanently docked at Anita Bryant’s mooring. They are becoming increasingly unhinged as they continue to lose their battle for marriage discrimination in the courts. It is now three in a row in Florida over less than three weeks. CFC’s latest email blast begins;
Another outlaw judge overthrows Florida’s constitutional respect for marriage!
Racist ruling will not stand!

Racist? Seriously? Do people actually believe this nonsense? According to CFC:

Judge Cohen’s corrupt decision is a judicial lynching of 8 million voters who cast their ballots in 2008 and fully expected to have their votes respected, among them, 64% of Hispanic voters and 71% of African-American voters.

Oh. Now I get it. If a judge overturns a ballot initiative that was approved by a majority of a minority group then that judge is a bigot. So when the Supreme Court ruled in Brown vs. Board of Education they were anti-white racists (segregation was directly and indirectly approved by the most white electorate)? Perhaps CFC’s antecedents actually made that claim as Florida was being desegregated. “Corrupt” means acting dishonestly for personal gain. Is CFC suggesting that Judge Cohen was bribed because he made a ruling that they don’t like?

They continue:

He also violated the constitutional rights to due process and equal protection of ALL voters as well as offended “basic human decency” in “finding” a “constitutional right to homosexual so-called ‘marriage’, which does not even exist!”. <sic>

It’s a preposterous claim. A court overturning a ballot measure as unconstitutional because it violates the due process rights of a minority group is thus depriving the voters of due process. There are three branches of government. In a referendum the electorate is acting as the legislative branch. All legislation is subject to constitutionality.

They conclude:

Cohen’s corrupt decision to overthrow Florida’s voter-approved Constitutional respect for marriage as the union of one man, one woman, is in open contempt to legally binding precedent established by the U.S. Supreme Court in U.S. vs. Windsor. It denies the voter rights of nearly 8 million Florida voters, violates his Oath of Office, and violates. Cohen has forfeited his legacy and his right to remain on the bench.

There they go again with the corrupt blather. As for the “legally binding precedent” established in United States vs. Windsor, let us examine (yet again — sigh…) the majority opinion written by Justice Kennedy:

In order to assess the validity of that intervention it is necessary to
discuss the extent of the state power and authority over marriage as a
matter of history and tradition. State laws defining and regulating
marriage, of course, must respect the constitutional rights of persons,
see, e.g., Loving v. Virginia,
388 U. S. 1
(1967); but, subject to those guarantees, “regulation of domestic relations”
is “an area that has long been regarded as a virtually exclusive
province of the States.” Sosna v. Iowa,
419 U. S. 393, 404 (1975).

Put simply; The states regulate marriage but cannot violate the constitutional rights of citizens. It’s not terribly complicated. The folks at CFC don’t like it but it is rather easy to understand.

By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.