As we predicted, over four years ago, even before the lawsuit was filed demanding gay marriage be recognized by the Polk County District Court, the Iowa Supreme Court has ruled same-sex marriage a protected right under the “equal protection under the law” provision of Iowa’s constitution.
The court in a unanimous decision held that Iowa’s Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), Code Section 595.2 is stricken and “further directs that the remaining statutory language be interpreted and applied in a manner allowing gay and lesbian people full access to the institution of civil marriage.”
What this means for Iowa and perhaps for the forty-seven other states in the country that currently do not recognize same-sex marriage is, to say the least, a monumental mess. Because Iowa’s statutes pertaining to marriage do not restrict that privilege to Iowa residents, gay couples from any state may come to Iowa, get married, return to their state and demand recognition under the Full Faith and Credit (Article IV, Sec. 1) provision of the U.S. Constitution. “Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state.”
Although the Iowa decision does not require that religious institutions perform gay marriages or that persons engaged in providing services to wedding couples (i.e., photographers, wedding planners, etc.) under Iowa’s Civil Rights protection statutes, the issue may become a cause for action. Homosexuals will demand that gay marriage be discussed and endorsed in all curricula where marriage and family is taught.
Lawsuits costing defendants thousands of dollars have proceeded in Massachusetts and Canada when citizens who, for personal reasons, objected to their children in elementary grades being taught that gay marriage was as wholesome as traditional heterosexual marriage. It is an established fact that the Iowa Civil Rights Commission is dominated by persons who are active in the gay rights movement. We will have more on this in subsequent releases.
HOW WE CAME TO THIS
There is no question that the Democrat Party and the gay activists who raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for them bear a major responsibility for this miscarriage of justice. The Legislature had the opportunity to protect Iowa from this assault on our culture. At every turn, Democrat senators and representatives blocked attempts to bring a vote of the people to amend Iowa’s constitution.
After it was learned that courts in other jurisdictions were declaring state defense of marriage statutes unconstitutional, defense of marriage proponents asked the Iowa Legislature to begin the three- year process to amend Iowa’s constitution.
A Senate Joint Resolution was drafted and brought to a vote. Although the Senate at that time was controlled by Republicans, their leadership, failing to recognize the import of the Resolution, lost control of the Iowa Senate and in spite of passage in the House of HJR-1, a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman, the amendment died.
Senate Democrats refused to allow debate on HJR -1. I talked with almost every Democrat senator, including Majority Leader Sen. Mike Gronstal. THEY ALL SAID THE SAME THING. “IOWA’S DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT IS SOLID AND WILL PASS ANY COURT CHALLENGE; THEREFORE A CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT IS UNNECESSARY.”
Senator Gronstal told me that he discussed Iowa’s law with at least one former Iowa Supreme Court Justice and was assured that a constitutional amendment was not needed. I assume his caucus benefited from his “research” and, therefore, parroted the same talking points.
We have tried to get the Legislature to begin the amendment process, noting it takes at least three years, but have been rebuffed by Senate and House Democrats. Again, the argument has been “Let’s see what the Supreme Court does.” This was a specious argument. The Iowa Supreme Court was evaluated by a “gay organization” and classified as “extremely gay friendly.” We knew it; they knew it.
WHO ELSE FAILED THE PEOPLE OF IOWA
There is no question that the religious leaders, except for a few courageous pastors and priests, failed to be the moral voice of the state. Most pastors, although agreeing privately that homosexuality is a sin, is destructive to the moral fabric of our culture and should not be recognized and/or promoted as an acceptable lifestyle, few would say so publicly.
Like the legislators who accepted thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of gay activist contributions, they were motivated to inaction by either a fear of being labeled as homophobic or intolerant or a loss of church members and, ultimately, their tithes.
Biblical worldview adherent organizations tried repeatedly to get the “church” to stand up for truth and resist evil. The pastors and board members who denied their congregants the leadership demanded of them should, in shame, repent of their failure. I have no compunction against stating that my acceptance of God’s Word as higher law and obedience to His Son, whose compassion has no bounds, justifies my opposition to the glorification and promotion of a lifestyle that leads to early death and, for many, years of emotional turmoil.
SO WHAT’S NEXT?
A constitutional amendment resolution, HJR-6, has been drafted by Rep. Dwayne Alons (R) and Dolores Mertz (D). If House and Senate leadership of both parties are committed to the proposition that marriage is reserved for the union of one man and one woman, they can begin the process this session. Although this will not, because of the proscribed constitutional amendment process, shorten the time line for amending our constitution, we urge that the process begin now.
Let your senators and representatives know how you feel. You can find access to them on our web site, www.iowachristian.com. Your efforts can trump the big dollars gay multi-millionaires have given to Iowa legislators.
“The law is the embodiment of the moral sentiments of the people.”….Sir William Blackstone.
According to the Iowa Supreme Court, the law is whatever they decide in accordance with their secular humanist philosophy.
Steve Scheffler – ICA President
Norm Pawlewski – ICA Lobbyist
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