Defenders of traditional marriage won a series of seven court victories in July, belying concern—at least for now—about "activist judges."

In a 4-2 decision, New York's highest court denied a suit for same-sex marriage, stating that such unions have no historical basis and are not a fundamental right guaranteed by the state constitution.

"Intuition and experience suggest that a child benefits from having before his or her eyes, every day, living models of what both a man and a woman are like," Judge Robert Smith wrote. Smith also ruled that while "racism has been recognized for centuries" as unjust, "the idea that same-sex marriage is even possible is a relatively new one."

The wording of the decision, in particular, pleased marriage-protection advocates.

"That almost could have been [taken] verbatim from our 'friend of the court' brief," said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council. "Because that's what we argued, that you cannot separate the well-being of children from marriage."

Elsewhere, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Nebraska's 2000 constitutional amendment forbidding same-sex marriage. Since a federal court had challenged Nebraska's ban on the basis of rights guaranteed gays and lesbians in the Constitution, the case had repercussions for the 20 other state amendments passed since 1998. On July 14, the Eighth Circuit Court ruled that Nebraska's amendment was neither too broad nor discriminatory.

"If [gay-marriage activists] cannot pick off Nebraska," said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, "I think it's very unlikely that they'll be able to strike down any of the amendments."

Additionally, the highest courts in Tennessee and Massachusetts allowed pursuit of ...

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