DOMA Is Dead: Supreme Court Rules Law Interfered With The Dignity of Same Sex Marriage


The Supreme Court has overturned the Defense of Marriage Act today, and in strong language declared that the law interfered with the dignity of same sex marriage.

In a 5-4 decision, the court ruled that:

The class to which DOMA directs its restrictions and restraints are those persons who are joined in same-sex marriages made lawful by the State. DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty. It imposes a disability on the class by refusing to acknowledge a status the State finds to be dignified and proper. DOMA instructs all federal officials, and indeed all persons with whom same-sex couples interact, including their own children, that their marriage is less worthy than the marriages of others. The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity.By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others,the federal statute is in violation of the Fifth Amendment. This opinion and its holding are confined to those lawful marriages.

The majority of the court struck at the heart of pro-DOMA argument by discussing dignity. The argument for the discriminatory law has always been made in moral terms. Today, the Supreme Court made the protection of the dignity of all marriage the law of the land.

This is a decision that is a certain to outrage social conservatives, but it confirms once again that this nation has moved beyond the politics of “family values” Republicans, and discrimination based on nothing more than moral and religious beliefs is not constitutional.

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