Thursday, February 27, 2014
The Black-Robed Supremacy: How courts are making the most important decisions for us
Kentuckians should be greatly comforted by the recent decision by a federal judge overturning part of the state's Marriage Amendment: It relieves us of the uncomfortable burden of governing ourselves.
The decision in last week's case, Bourne v. Beshear, forces Kentucky to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. It did this by overturning the decision of Kentucky voters in 2004 that amended Kentucky's constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman and to ensure that Kentucky does not have its marriage policy dictated by other states.
After being passed by elected lawmakers, the Marriage Amendment was approved by almost 75 percent of Kentuckians—more votes in favor than votes for and against any previous constitutional amendment. But the will of the people is becoming increasingly unpopular with what U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has called the "black-robed supremacy": judges who see it as their role, not to interpret the law, but to pronounce it.