Tags: Gay Marriage | supreme court | gay marriage | opinion | religious freedom

High Court Takes Up Gay Marriage as Nation Seems OK With Unions

By    |   Thursday, 23 April 2015 04:02 PM

Gay marriage advocates are pondering their next steps as the nation's collective opinion seems to be softening for such unions, The New York Times reports.

Such direction is seen as the Supreme Court hears oral arguments in the gay marriage case this week and as states have seen recent backlash against efforts to support so-called religious freedom bills, the Times noted.

While some states continue efforts to allow opt-outs on religious grounds, a national directive by the high court may limit the ability — and also likely will — of social conservatives to push back on religious grounds, the Times said.

"As more couples marry, more people will know people who are married," said Harvard Law School historian Michael J. Klarman, who has written on same sex marriage decisions to the Times. "And those who oppose it will find out that the sky doesn’t fall."

University of Chicago political scientist Gerald N. Rosenberg describes to the Times a "sea change in public opinion" for acceptance. Previously, he had predicted a broader backlash.

Some in the conservative ranks, however, disagree that it will go away that easy. "If the government wants to pretend to redefine marriage, I don’t think that will settle the issue," Tami Fitzgerald, the executive director of the North Carolina Values Coalition, told the Times.

Support for gay marriage is at a record high, USA Today reported, citing a national poll with Suffolk University that found that 51 percent think it is impractical for the Supreme Court to ban same sex marriages, given that an increasing number is legalizing them.

The poll of 1,000 people taken from April 8-13 found that close to six in 10 Americans register opposition to a law that would OK allowing businesses to refuse services to a same-sex wedding, USA Today noted.

To date, 36 states along with the District of Columbia allow same sex couples to wed within their borders.

Conservative support for gay marriage is growing, noted columnist S.E. Cupp in a column published by the Dallas Morning News. In a Pew poll, 61 of Republicans under 30 years old said they supported gay marriage.

She wrote: "For some time I’ve been quietly [and sometimes not so quietly] telling my conservative friends that while the party can still support traditional views on marriage, it does need to adjust its attitudes, for two reasons I like to sum up as math and manners."

She added: "On the math, of course, the numbers are fairly compelling. The millennial generation is 80 million, the largest in history. And for millennials who lean right, gay marriage is an area in which they disagree with their party."

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Gay marriage advocates are pondering their next steps as the nation's collective opinion seems to be softening for such unions, The New York Times reports.
supreme court, gay marriage, opinion, religious freedom
Thursday, 23 April 2015 04:02 PM
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