Washington, D.C.- Focus on the Family President Jim Daly was at the Supreme Court today listening to oral arguments on the historic marriage case, Obergefell v. Hodges. This is his reaction:
“Sadly, civil discourse in America has deteriorated over the past few years. Where once our nation produced a robust exchange of ideas, we now see attempts to silence people of faith and those who support traditional marriage. Yet that silencing can’t erase the fact that an overwhelming majority of those who have voted on the issue—more than 51 million Americans—have cast their vote to maintain one man, one woman marriage in their states.
“As I sat in the court room and listened to both sides argue their case, I kept thinking it would be a travesty for the Supreme Court justices to ignore the views of these 51 million Americans. After all, since the Constitution is silent on the issue of marriage, it’s up to the people to decide how marriage should be defined. And it's the people who will be impacted by this decision.
“Same-sex marriage impacts children. Marriage is the vehicle that brings together male and female, the two halves of humanity, to raise and care for the children their union produces. So if we legalize same-sex marriage in all fifty states, it will come at a high cost for our children: it will deny children either a mother or a father. Both moms and dads are important, and they’re not interchangeable.
“This marriage decision will also impact people of faith. Already we see how their First Amendment rights are increasingly ignored as the government imposes the new definition of marriage in the 36 states where same-sex unions are recognized. Good men and women are facing financial ruin simply because their religious beliefs prevent them from participating in a same-sex wedding ceremony. We’re seeing faith-based adoption agencies being forced to close, parental rights ignored in schools, and, if the Court mandates all 50 states recognize same-sex marriage, it won’t be long before pressure is brought to bear on pastors to officiate and churches to host these ceremonies – even though it violates their faith. After all, the government doesn’t have a strong track record of protecting religious freedom when it come into conflict with ‘sexual freedom.’
“Marriage has been defined by God and throughout history as the union of a man and a woman. In a pluralistic society, any efforts to redefine this foundational institution should at least be put to a vote of the people. “With everything that’s at stake, it’s my hope and prayer the Supreme Court justices recognize the right of the states and citizens to decide matters where the Constitution is silent.”