LANSING, Mich. — A federal judge appointed by then-President Ronald Reagan has struck down Michigan’s same-sex ‘marriage’ ban, declaring that the state’s constitutional amendment violates the federal constitution.
U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman handed down his 31-page opinion on Friday, stating that despite views to the contrary, Michigan officials must allow homosexuals to “marry” and adopt children together.
“Many Michigan residents have religious convictions whose principles govern the conduct of their daily lives and inform their own viewpoints about marriage,” he wrote. “Nonetheless, these views cannot strip other citizens of the guarantees of equal protection under the law.”
Voters in Michigan had passed a marriage amendment in 2004 that made it unlawful to conduct or recognize same-sex “marriages” in the state. It was passed with 59 percent of the vote, or nearly 2.7 million ballots cast in the favor of the measure.
“To secure and preserve the benefits of marriage for our society and for future generations of children, the union of one man and one woman in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as a marriage or similar union for any purpose,” the state constitutional amendment read.
Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette had argued before the court that overturning the amendment would essentially make null and void the will of the people. But Friedman ruled on Friday that although a certain position is firmly held among the people, it doesn’t mean that it is constitutional.
“In attempting to define this case as a challenge to ‘the will of the people,’ state defendants lost sight of what this case is truly about: people,” he wrote. “No court record of this proceeding could ever fully convey the personal sacrifice of these two plaintiffs who seek to ensure that the state may no longer impair the rights of their children and the thousands of others now being raised by same-sex couples.”
Unlike other justices, Friedman did not issue a stay of his ruling pending appeal. Therefore, Schuette filed for an emergency stay with the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
“In 2004, the citizens of Michigan recognized that diversity in parenting is best for kids and families because moms and dads are not interchangeable,” he wrote in a statement. “Michigan voters enshrined that decision in our state constitution, and their will should stand and be respected.”
In the meantime, officials with several county offices in the state announced that they would be opening their doors on Saturday for those who wished to apply for marriage licences.
Last year, Gary Glenn of the American Family Association of Michigan asserted at a Juneteenth Celebration that Governor Rick Snyder should ignore any unlawful ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court surrounding marriage and “defend the vote of the people of Michigan and our state Constitution.”
“With the heritage we have from the freedom fighters and the Freedom Riders who came before us, God forgive us if we fail to stand,” he declared. “But if we do, as Martin Luther King said, we should do to fulfill our Christian duty. We will threaten those, we will overcome those, who threaten our faith and freedom. And we will be proud to stand with you in that struggle for our faith [and] we will be blessed for doing so.”
Michigan’s same-sex “marriage” lawsuit was filed in 2012 by two lesbian women, April DeBoer and Jayne Rouse, who currently raise three special needs children together. The two are seeking to tie the knot and to adopt each other’s children. Michigan is now the 18th state to legalize homosexual “marriage.”