Washington Court Rejects Challenge

Here are two excerpts from a recent radio commentary by Julaine Appling of the Family Research Institute of Wisconsin:
Unfortunately too many judges think they know better than the legislature what's good for the people. We call it judicial activism, and it's the very reason we believe Wisconsin must amend its constitution to clearly define and protect traditional one-man/one-woman marriage.


What are the "other intimate relationships" we can foresee will be judicially elevated to equality with marriage? Cohabitation, serial "monogamy," one-night stands, and menages with same and opposite-sex variants, what? Will the courts begin specifying which? For now we can only guess.
Scary! The boogeyman judges are coming to get us! They want to force "menages" on us!

Uh, yeah. Nice try, but does anyone really believe this stuff?

Today, the Washington Supreme Court became the latest to reject a lawsuit seeking marriage for gay couples. From the majority opinion:
But, while same-sex marriage may be the law at a future time, it will be because the people declare it to be, not because five members of this court have dictated it.
Last week, I highlighted cases in Georgia, New York, Connecticut, Tennessee, Massachusetts, and Nebraska that also failed to live up to the predictions of Julaine and her friends.

Ultimately, I don't want to forget that these cases are about real families. What they seek is simple. They seek basic protections for each other and, in some cases, their children. They want to commit to their families and be held responsible to that commitment in the eyes of their families and in the eyes of the law.

Many of them have pressing needs for these protections. Carol Snyder and Heather McDonnell were involved in the rejected New York lawsuit. Here's just a part of their story:

Carol survived breast cancer 12 years ago. The couple purposefully sought out a surgeon who was gay-friendly, but the nurses and other staff constantly challenged Heather during Carol's hospital stay. They would tell her she was staying too long even though the doctor had said she could stay as long as she wanted. They repeatedly demanded to know who she was, saying things like, "Who are you? Why are you here? Are you her sister?" All of this was happening just after they'd found out that Carol had stage two cancer, making her ordeal even more upsetting.

After that experience, they registered as domestic partners and signed health proxies for each other. Even with these legal documents, Heather had to assert herself once again in January 2003 when Carol had a cardiac event following a bad reaction to medication. At one point as Carol's vital signs were crashing, the doctor who was working to save her told Heather to keep talking to her and help hold her down because Carol would respond to her better than anyone else. Afterwards a nurse who had been present as the doctor worked to save Carol's life tried to make Heather leave Carol's hospital room. When Heather pointed out that she was Carol's health care proxy, the nurse demanded, "Who are you?"

I hope they and many, many other families like them will continue to tell their stories to the public and to lawmakers.

In Wisconsin, we'll keep telling our stories, and we'll also keep helping people understand the draconian ban that will appear on the November ballot.

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