There is a right wing hypothesis that likening same-sex marriage to Roe v. Wade is a compelling argument in favor of marriage discrimination. The idea is that the public will not accept marriage equality just like some people continue to protest legal abortion — some even resorting to violence.

Therefore, it is not surprising to see an email blast from Family Research Council titled Supreme Court Refuses to Take Up Marriage Cases, Knowing Nation Will Not Accept Nationwide Redefinition of Marriage. And therein, quoting its president, Tony Perkins:

The Supreme Court decision to not take up these lower court rulings, which undermine natural marriage and the rule of law, for now, puts the issue of marriage back before the US Congress. This decision, in part, is an indication that those on the Court who desire to redefine natural marriage recognize the country will not accept a Roe v. Wade type decision on marriage.

Aside from the fact that the public already supports marriage equality, the comparison is laughable. Conservative Christians see real victims of abortion which they describe as baby killing. Exactly who are the victims of marriage equality? I know, they will claim the Christian owner of some inn who doesn’t want to host a same-sex wedding in his public accommodation in violation of the law. But that’s not a real victim. Not something that the general public can identify with.

What? Are they going to recruit an army of “sidewalk counselors” who will scream “don’t marry that man|woman — you will roast in hell?” It is ludicrous. The only people affected by gay marriage are those who are gay married and their families.

Perkins continues:

Unfortunately, by failing to take up these marriage cases, the High Court will allow rogue lower court judges who have ignored history and true legal precedent to silence the elected representatives of the people and the voice of the people themselves by overturning state provisions on marriage. Even more alarming, lower court judges are undermining our form of government and the rights and freedoms of citizens to govern themselves. This judicially led effort to force same sex ‘marriage’ on people will have negative consequences for our Republic, not only as it relates to natural marriage but also undermining the rule of and respect for law.

A “rogue” judge is one who makes a ruling that you don’t like. These lower court judges have all been affirmed by the appellate courts. If this undermines respect for the law that’s on Family Research Council and others who cannot accept the judicial process when it doesn’t suit them.

Perkins continues:

The Court decision ensures that the debate over natural marriage will continue and the good news is that time is not on the side of those who want to redefine marriage. As more states are forced to redefine marriage, contrary to nature and directly in conflict with the will of millions, more Americans will see and experience attacks on their religious freedom. Parents will find a wedge being driven between them and their children as school curriculum is changed to contradict the morals parents are teaching their children. As more and more people lose their livelihoods because they refuse to not just tolerate but celebrate same-sex marriage, Americans will see the true goal, which is for activists to use the Court to impose a redefinition of natural marriage on the entire nation.

Sure. There will be some Christianist crackpots who will use marriage equality to gain their fifteen minutes of fame. The Christian right will also troll for would-be activists to create cases. However, overall, people will come to realize – just as they have done in the states that recognize same-sex marriage – that this is something that does not affect them.

Perkins concludes:

Congress should respond to today’s announcement by moving forward with
the State Marriage Defense Act, which is consistent with last year’s
Windsor ruling and ensures that the federal government in its definition
of marriage respects the duly enacted marriage laws of the states.

That bill was introduced last January and has gone nowhere. The House version  has only 68 cosponsors. The bill won’t get out of committee because it is clearly unconstitutional. Absent a constitutional amendment (good luck with that) marriage equality is likely to be the law of the land shortly. Within weeks it will be the law of the land for 60% of our population.

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.