Four Terrible Supreme Court Arguments On Marriage

4-6-15 mnwFour states will have to defend their marriage bans before the US Supreme Court this month, and all four are still scrambling to figure out exactly how they’re going to pull that off. They filed a series of briefs with the court last week that are full of weird claims and arguments that just don’t make sense. Kentucky says that its marriage ban doesn’t discriminate, since gay couples are still free to marry someone of the opposite sex. This is exactly the same argument that was used to justify bans on interracial marriage, and it’s essentially saying “you’re free to do whatever you want, as long as you actually do something else.”

Michigan’s brief is even crazier. They say that gaining marriage equality through a court order, rather than a popular vote, would be demeaning to gay couples. So, thanks, Michigan, for your concern. Tennessee is sticking with the argument that if gay couples can get married, then straight couples will stop raising children in stable families, somehow. And Ohio says that overturning the marriage ban would cause the people who voted for it to feel isolated. Sure.

Those four states will be going up against Mary Bonauto and Doug Hallward-Driemeier on April 28th. Mary’s a longtime champion of marriage equality. She won the case that brought marriage to Massachusetts in 2004, and the case that overturned DOMA in 2013. Doug has argued fourteen times before the Supreme Court, and is a former Assistant U.S. Solicitor General. Those marriage bans aren’t going to know what hit them.