THE PROPOSITION 8 RULING / One judge vs. 7 million voters?
The reaction to Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling from opponents of same-sex marriage was swift, angry and predictable. How dare, they ask, could the opinion of one judge invalidate the votes of the 7 million Californians who supported Proposition 8? On Fox News, Sarah Palin expressed frustration at “that third branch of government undoing the will of the people.” Similar sentiments reverberated from conservatives in the blogosphere, cable news and talk radio.
Reasonable people may disagree about whether Walker’s 136-page ruling made the case that Proposition 8 was unconstitutional because it lacked “any rational basis” for singling out gays and lesbians for denial of marriage licenses. But there should be no argument about the authority - indeed, the responsibility - of the federal judiciary to assess the constitutionality of a law.
This is exactly how our constitutional democracy is supposed to work.
Don’t blame federal judges for doing their jobs. The concept of judicial review has been at the core of our checks-and-balances democracy since the landmark Marbury vs. Madison ruling in 1803.
This is how our system of Government works. It’s not activist judges, it’s not the will of the people being thwarted it’s HOW THE US GOVERNMENT WORKS! It doesn’t matter if you don’t like it. It doesn’t matter if the will of the bigoted and ignorant was thwarted. You don’t support or even understand how our country works if you make these types of ignorant claims. Putting your fingers in your ears and screaming “LA LA LA LA LA LA” isn’t going to change the fact.