California Supreme Court Upholds Prop 8

Today, in a 6-to-1 decision, the California Supreme Court upheld Proposition 8, the ballot measure that eliminated the right of same sex couples to marry. At the same time, the court unanimously ruled that the more than 18,000 marriages that took place between June 16 and November 4, 2008 continue to be fully valid and recognized by the state of California.

Demonstrations outside the California Supreme Court building.

Justice Carlos Moreno, the sole dissenter, got it right when he stated, “The rule the majority crafts today not only allows same-sex couples to be stripped of the right to marry that this court recognized in the Marriage Cases, it places at risk the state constitutional rights of all disfavored minorities. It weakens the status of our state Constitution as a bulwark of fundamental rights for minorities protected from the will of the majority.”

Now that the court has spoken, the road ahead is clear. We must go back to the ballot box and overturn Prop 8.

Matt Coles, Director of the ACLU LGBT Project recorded the follow short video in response to today’s decision. In the video, he explains that fundamental American values are at stake in the fight for marriage and for LGBT rights generally. This, Coles says, is about the right to live your life without having someone else’s morality imposed on you.

Please take a look and forward it to your friends and family.

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The California Supreme Court should have invalidated the 18,000 "marriages" as well.


I recognize that civil rights are at stake here, but I think that's not the big picture. This is really a church/state separation issue with civil rights repercussions. At the root - our government basing civil rights on a religious ceremony is wrong. Attack this problem from a church/state angle and I suspect there will be more support as you would be joining the LGBT and non-theist forces in the same battle.

J. Modjeska

Unfortunate though it might seem, the Court got it right. It was the voters of California, not the Court, that perpetrated this ill against the gay community, and because of the way California's constitution works, the Court had no choice but to uphold Prop 8.

A careful reading of the opinion reveals that the court has literally stripped away all meaning from Prop 8 except the word "marriage". The Court was explicit in saying that ALL the legal benefits of marriage are still available to all people; it is only the title that's missing. I know that's not good enough, but it's going to take a vote of the people - not of a 7 judge panel - to fix this. In the meantime, the anti-gay crowd's victory is in name only.

So, you've certainly got this right: "Now that the court has spoken, the road ahead is clear. We must go back to the ballot box and overturn Prop 8."

As always, you have my continued support and membership.

Jeremy Modjeska
Seattle, WA

stephen brown

this is an outrage! as has been said a million times before, civil rights should NEVER be up to popular vote

Ben B

No civil rights movement in America has ever failed. This one will not.

It is unfortunate that the CA Supreme Court has made a decision that will one day in all American's minds (as it is currently in ours) be in the sahmeful category with Plessy and Korematsu.

Such a sad day in American history is another chance for people to speak out against the "morals" of such a poorly guided majority. Thank you, ACLU for your continued efforts on this and many cases.


In 1860 if they held a referendum to abolish slavery it would have failed as would have a referendum to give women the vote in 1918 but justice prevailed and not even A Bush could turn back the clock now.So rave on wing nuts about your phony family values and your bogus
claims to be protecting children because the time is coming when all people will be able to enjoy the rights that you take for granted.
Afterall what greater perversion can there be than basing marriage on hate rather than love.


The gays and the ACLU need to learn how to accept the will of the people.
They asked for a vote got it on the ballot last year and LOST.
How wwould they feel if it would have passed and those opposed were taking it to the high court for reversel?
Freaking hypocrites.


Excuse ME? Who I choose to love and marry shouldn't be up to the will of the people in the first place. It's my own personal choice. Not yours or anyone else in California for that sake. Don't like Gay marriage? Don't have one. 18,000 gay couples got married before prop 8 passed. Did it cause you great pain? Were you unable to sleep for months on end as each marriage license was issued to a newly wed gay couple? Was your life and family completely destroyed knowing all these gay people out there whom you never met before are now married? Hell didn't affect your life in any shape or form except reading about it in the paper and hating something you don't understand. How would you like the whole state of CA to vote on who you could marry?




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