An integral part of our nation’s character and laws is the principle that all Americans are entitled to be treated equally by their government. Since 1888, the U.S. Supreme Court has 14 times reiterated that marriage is a basic civil right, including their landmark decision that struck down bans on interracial marriage more than 30 years ago.
Prop. 8 amended the California Constitution to eliminate marriage rights for same-sex couples in November 2008. As a result, the State of California is in violation of the United States Constitution, the supreme law of the land, which guarantees every American basic fundamental rights, including the right to equal protection under the law.
- Violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
- Violates the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment by impinging on fundamental liberties.
- Singles out gay and lesbian individuals for a disfavored legal status, thereby creating a category of “second-class citizens.”
- Discriminates on the basis of gender.
- Discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation.
Separate is never equal, and under Prop. 8, California distinguishes its residents into four separate and unequal groups:
- Opposite-sex couples who have full marriage rights.
- Same-sex couples who have no marriage rights.
- Same-sex couples who were married between June and November 2008 whose marriages are recognized by the State. However, they have no right to remarry if divorced or widowed.
- Same-sex couples married in another state who may petition for state recognition of their marriage.