California Supreme Court: San Francisco mayor broke the law

California Supreme Court: San Francisco mayor broke the law
Yesterday, as you've undoubtedly heard by now, the California Supreme Court ruled that San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom broke state law by issuing 3,995 marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The ruling is absurdly long, but it doesn't solve much. Chief Justice Ronald George explicitly wrote that the decision doesn't address "the substantive legal rights of same sex couples"—it just says that the marriages done earlier this year were invalid because Newsom didn't have the authority to grant them. A bunch of lawsuits filed yesterday aim to solve the question about whether Newsom's rationale for gay marriage—that California's constitutional prohibitions against discrimination trump the 1977 state law defining marriage as a union between a man and woman.

For now, it's a basic junior high social studies lesson: the legislative branch makes laws, the judicial branch interprets laws, and the executive branch implements and enforces the laws. These days, of course, the judicial branch makes the laws, the legislative branch tells them what laws they can't interpret, and the executive branch gets all the attention without actually doing much. Seriously, when the debate over abortion law focuses on the presidential election because of what judges he'll appoint, isn't something a bit amiss?

Oh yeah, we were talking about the California Supreme Court decision. Lots of opinion from the usual conservative Christian groups here. Here are the main news links:

  • California Supreme Court rules gay unions have no standing | The court said that the mayor of San Francisco overstepped his authority by issuing gay couples marriage licenses (The New York Times)
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Launched in 1999, Christianity Today’s Weblog was not just one of the first religion-oriented weblogs, but one of the first published by a media organization. (Hence its rather bland title.) Mostly compiled by then-online editor Ted Olsen, Weblog rounded up religion news and opinion pieces from publications around the world. As Christianity Today’s website grew, it launched other blogs. Olsen took on management responsibilities, and the Weblog feature as such was mothballed. But CT’s efforts to round up important news and opinion from around the web continues, especially on our Gleanings feature.
Ted Olsen
Ted Olsen is Christianity Today's editorial director. He wrote the magazine's Weblog—a collection of news and opinion articles from mainstream news sources around the world—from 1999 to 2006. In 2004, the magazine launched Weblog in Print, which looks for unexpected connections and trends in articles appearing in the mainstream press. The column was later renamed "Tidings" and ran until 2007.
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