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NV Attorney General Links Gay Marriage To Bigamy, Incest In Brief Defending State's Ban

Masto56Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto (D) has an onslaught of backlash headed her way after a brief she filed on Tuesday linked same-sex marriage to bigamy and incest. The brief, responding to the Lambda Legal-filed case Sevick v. Sandoval which is challenging Nevada's 2002 ban on gay marriage, stands in vehement opposition to repealing the ban, reportedly "on the basis that it reflects the will of the people." Masto believes that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals need not apply heightened scrutiny to this case as “There exists neither fundamental right, nor suspect or quasi- suspect class, justifying a different standard of review.” A controversial perspective, to be sure, but not nearly as much as the direct links she draws among gay marriage, incest, and bigamy.

The Washington Blade reports:

But in a section titled “Marriage Defined” explaining “what marriage is” and “what marriage is not,” Masto reminds the court that in addition to not being for same-sex couples under Nevada law, marriage is also not for those engaging in bigamy or incest.

Bigamyincest

...

Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, took Masto to task for making an implicit comparison between same-sex marriage and bigamy or incest while saying she makes no solid argument against allowing gay nuptials in Nevada.

“Marriage is not ‘defined’ by who is denied it, and nothing in the brief explains why loving and committed couples of the same sex should be denied the legal commitment and bundle of obligations and protections that are available to different-sex couples,” Wolfson said.

Masto differs from other Democratic state attorney generals who have recently decided not to defend gay marriage bans based on their lack of constitutional validity. For their part, Lambda Legal will have words with Masto soon.

Jon Davidson, Lambda’s legal director, said “of course, we find any such comparison objectionable” between same-sex marriage and bigamy or incest. The organization is slated to file its formal response to the attorney general’s brief next month.

GetEQUAL Nevada lead organizer Derek Washington, a friend of Attorney General Masto's, issued the following statement in response to her brief:

"I count Attorney General Cortez Masto as one of my very first mentors, having met her at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver. I am deeply disappointed that she would take the positions she has in her vigorous defense of a law that I find discriminatory and against the ideals of equality this great country was founded on. For the Attorney General to equate marriage equality with bigamy and incest is not only jaw dropping, but it is also a personal affront from someone I thought understood that we, LGBTQ Nevadans, are just the same as all other Nevadans. We work hard, send our children to school and contribute to the health of our communities. To be lumped in with bigamists and sexual criminals by a friend is, to say the very least, heartbreaking."

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Comments

  1. You've got to remember that homophobia towards male homosexuality is driven largely by a woman's fear of men. Women fear the power of men and the power of their sexuality, be it heterosexual or homosexual.

    Women tend to be less phobic towards male homosexuality if it's segregated away than if it exists in men who are also attracted to women. Once male homosexuality materializes in men who are also attracted to women, it threatens her ability to control men.

    Keep in mind that women control men through sexual consent. She's the gate-keeper. If she's not in the mood, the sex act cannot proceed. Men who can turn to men when the woman does not consent represent a threat to her ability to control men.

    This is why much of the homophobia towards us guys comes from women. It's part of the gender war.

    Posted by: jason | Jan 23, 2014 6:45:11 PM


  2. Mabey she's taking this absurd position as a way of throwing the case.

    Posted by: e.c. | Jan 23, 2014 6:49:51 PM


  3. Ah, Rick dusted off his "Jason" alias. Haven't seen that in a while. But as usual his posts are easily identifiable within a few words.

    Posted by: Steve | Jan 23, 2014 6:56:56 PM


  4. Calm down dear !

    Marriage is not divorce.
    Marriage is not the Immaculate Conception.
    Marriage is not possession of crack.
    Marriage is not two people living together.
    Marriage is not penetration by 'the Holy Spirit'.

    Marriage may be Greek male bonding.
    Marriage may be the vows of the male couples of the Sacred Band before Cheronae.
    Marriage may be a man and a woman who want careers not children.
    Marriage may be two people, male or female who want/don't want children.

    Marriage may be the freedom of two citizens to have what their next door neighbours have.

    But marriage is not what you say it is Citizen Masto...and Marriage is not defined by reference to a few statutory laws specifically referenced by you to manipulate your narrow self-serving definition.

    Calm down dear and get out more.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Jan 23, 2014 6:58:03 PM


  5. @E.C. That is EXACTLY what I was thinking. Her position is utterly absurd - but at the same time it accurately states the views of the anti-equality side. Personally, I believe she did us a great favor. It shows just how ridiculous the arguments against marriage equality are.

    Posted by: Gerry | Jan 23, 2014 7:06:17 PM


  6. ANOTHER RIGHT WING CATHOLIC -- a Gonzaga graduate -- unwilling to go against what the bishops want.

    WHY IS EVERYONE NOT PICKETING CATHOLIC BISHOPS AND CHURCHES?
    Without the pressure from the bishops, NJ, IL, CA, WA, HI, and other States would have had equality sooner.

    WHY DON'T THEY GET THE BLAME?

    Posted by: Bob K | Jan 23, 2014 7:08:18 PM


  7. This is puzzling.

    Obviously Masto knows that the fundamental right part of her argument is nonsense and she used it in conjunction with a question of scrutiny. Now the Ninth has to answer that assertion. Should they use Kern's ruling or find on their own that LGBT citizens are indeed a suspect class that pretty much seals the fate for marriage equality in the Ninth district states.
    She may have done us a favor here.

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Jan 23, 2014 7:27:40 PM


  8. F*ck her with a splintered baseball bat.

    Posted by: ToThePoint | Jan 23, 2014 7:30:41 PM


  9. Thanks to Lizz Winsted for providing me with this thought:

    "She seems nice."

    Posted by: bkmn | Jan 23, 2014 7:31:22 PM


  10. what Ms. Masto said is an insult to the gblt community.......and bigamy is ILLEGAL in the USA and I am not quite sure how/why/where she ties incest in with being gay..........neither make any sense!

    Posted by: Bernie | Jan 23, 2014 7:33:09 PM


  11. I'm going to take the high road and suppose she made an utterly ridiculous losing argument to make it easier for the court to find the statute unconstitutional.

    Otherwise, this is sad.

    Posted by: JasonMacB | Jan 23, 2014 7:36:28 PM


  12. The proper response is...

    Incest isn't marriage. It's sexual relations with someone too closely related, and is a felony in the state of nevada. We'renot talking about that.

    Bigamy isn't marriage. It's one legal marriage followed by one illegal marriage. It,s also a felony in Nevada. Were also not talking about that, either.

    What were asking about is one legal marriage between two unrelated people.

    Posted by: Ben in Oakland | Jan 23, 2014 7:39:00 PM


  13. I think it's brilliant.

    Masto is not an idiot like Corbett in Pa and the hate groups that use this language all the time. She also personally supports marriage equality. Incest & bigamy are red herrings used only to appease the fundamentalists. It's their language. Do you honestly think the Ninth doesn't know this? I believe she couched these assertions deliberately so that the Ninth would have to address them.

    Now the argument is framed so that the Ninth has to answer the elemental questions of the fundamental right to marriage & level of scrutiny. This is exactly what you do to get the answers you need from the Courts.

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Jan 23, 2014 7:54:43 PM


  14. Make that a fence post.

    Posted by: ToThePoint | Jan 23, 2014 7:54:48 PM


  15. She's forcing the court to recognize that, in the case of either incest or bigamy, the laws are consistently applied against all classes of people; in the case against marriage equality, there is a class distinction between those accorded the right to marry and those forbidden from marrying. I think she may be helping narrow the argument by focusing on the difference between fairly applied marriage laws and those that unfairly apply to a quasi-suspect and/or suspect class [despite her clearly erroneous claims to the contrary].

    Posted by: Bill Lundy | Jan 23, 2014 7:55:19 PM


  16. She's a Democrat? .. And according to Wikipedia she's not even up for re-election in 2014, since term limits prevent that, plus she declined to run for governor.

    Posted by: Lexis | Jan 23, 2014 8:04:30 PM


  17. she needs some gay friends to give her a much needed makeover!...

    Posted by: shekeka | Jan 23, 2014 8:08:29 PM


  18. These egregious statements from a Democrat make me tend to agree with @E.C. above. And any real politician knows that "The will people" needs to be mitigated as much as the other branches of government. "The Will of The People", like religion, is not omnipotent and all truth. It's fallible, makes mistakes, and is sometimes ungodly.

    Posted by: woodroad34 | Jan 23, 2014 8:26:42 PM


  19. If Nevada held a referendum and 50.1% of the voters approved of removing a woman's right to vote or hold public office would she be so quick to askl a court to rule based on the "will of the people"?

    Posted by: Ready | Jan 23, 2014 8:39:15 PM


  20. But I thought Democrats could do no wrong ?

    Posted by: Just Sayin' | Jan 23, 2014 8:52:16 PM


  21. It wasn't too long ago in Western history when the popular consensus was against a woman's right to vote. Mato's use of the phrase "will of the people" is hypocritical.

    Also, if commenters criticize Jason's post, they need to refute the points he is making, not simply stick a label on his post.

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Jan 23, 2014 8:58:39 PM


  22. In 1877 a same sex female couple married in Elko County, Nevada. At that time the judge did not think the 1861 statutes prevented same sex couples from marrying. An article I wrote about this appeared in American Ancestors magazine and you can see more at http://www.boxturtlebulletin.com/2011/08/15/36117

    Posted by: homer | Jan 23, 2014 9:04:12 PM


  23. @ARTIE_IN_LAUDERDALE, meet Hitchens's razor:

    What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

    Posted by: JJ | Jan 23, 2014 9:27:38 PM


  24. That's ok, I'm a democratic gay voter in the state of Nevada and this woman just lost my vote for any office she runs for.

    Posted by: Macmantoo | Jan 23, 2014 9:29:11 PM


  25. Poor Derek is a poor judge of character. Or, she is very bwd at acting. Bad PR for Nevada Democrats, women in professions and Hispanic politicians...

    Posted by: Chevytexas | Jan 23, 2014 9:43:16 PM


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