Kansas Hub




Westboro Baptist Church Files Brief to Intervene in Challenge to Kansas Gay Marriage Ban

Westboro

Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church has filed a brief seeking to intervene in the challenge to the state's gay marriage ban, the Washington Blade reports:

In a 22-page legal brief filed Sunday loaded with references to biblical Scripture and condemnation of homosexuality, the Church seeks to take part in a lawsuit pending before the U.S. District Court for the Kansas, saying same-sex marriage “is utterly contrary to Bible doctrine.”

“Same-sex marriage will destroy Kansas,” the brief states. “If this Court requires Kansas officials to treat what God has called abominable as something to be respected, revered, and blessed with the seal-of-approval of the government, that will cross a final line with God. The harm that will befall this state, when the condign destructive wrath of God pours out on Kansans is the ultimate harm to the health, welfare and safety of the people.” [...]

Although the brief doesn’t contain the same anti-gay slurs that have made the church infamous, the filing does envision calamity if same-sex marriage is legalized in Kansas based on the biblical scripture. Stories cited by the church include the destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah, ancient cities thought to have incurred God’s wrath for allowing homosexuality, and God’s destruction of civilization worldwide by Noah’s flood.

Don't expect the court to accept the church's request to intervene. A similar, biblically-laced brief by a straight couple last week seeking to intervene on the grounds that gay marriage in Kansas would lead to a theft of their own marriage was tossed out by a federal judge for lack of legal standing in the case. 

Read the brief below via Equality Case Files:

Kansas remains the only state in the Tenth Circuit without marriage equality.


Federal Judge Cancels Today's Hearing on Challenge to Kansas Gay Marriage Ban

A federal judge in Kansas who was set to hear a challenge to the state's ban on same-sex marriage today has canceled the hearing, the Associated Press reports:

KansasACLU attorney Doug Bonney said U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Crabtree is considering whether to reschedule the oral arguments or decide the case based on the parties' written arguments.

Bonney said he told Crabtree during a 30-minute conference Thursday that the ACLU did not have time to review the state's written response to the lawsuit because it had just been filed.

This is separate from the case scheduled to be heard before the Kansas Supreme Court on November 6.

Kansas remains the only state in the Tenth Circuit without marriage equality. 

Update: Plaintiffs in the case have been given until Monday (October 27) to file additional briefs on the preliminary injunction. 


Kansas Straight Couple Files Insane Brief Arguing Gay Marriage Would Steal Their Marriage Away

KansasIn what might be the craziest argument made against gay marriage this month, concerned heterosexual Kansas couple Phillip and Sandra Unruh have filed a motion to intervene in the case challenging the state's gay marriage ban - insisting that allowing same-sex couples to marry would literally lead to a "taking of their property rights in marriage without due process of law."

The brief states, in part:

The extension of marriage to same sex relationships inflicts profound harm on the Unruhs. For the court to say that from this day forward marriage in Kansas must be extended to a same sex couple is and for ever will be deeply disturbing to the Unruhs and undoubtedly to those that cared enough to pass an amendment to protect it, a departure from the joy and celebration normally associated with the word marriage. Disturbed, not because of bigotry, but out of solemn respect for what marriage is, what it has meant to them and to society in general. Marriage is perhaps the single most valuable institution society has ever had. The standards established by marriage and its exclusive nature enjoyed by the Unruhs can not be ignored or impaired without fundamental civil rights of the Unruhs being disturbed and married people being discriminated against....a ruling extending marriage to same sex relationships would violate the Unruhs' right to equal protection under the law by the Court's failure to protect marriage and support the right of Kansas citizens to codify its implicit meaning.

Other portions of the brief mention Bible verses and "responsible procreation, effective parenting, and the desire to proceed cautiously in this evolving area" as reasons for keeping Kansas' gay marriage ban in place. 

Read the brief yourself and marvel at the absurdity below, via Equality Case Files

[h/t/ jmg]


Kansas Candidates For Governor Debate Gay Marriage: VIDEO

Kansas

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback and his Democratic challenger Paul Davis sparred on Monday night over the issue of gay marriage. Following the Supreme Court's decision to let stand a 10th Circuit ruling invalidating bans on same-sex marriage, a ruling that effects Kansas as the Sunflower State is under the 10th Circuit's jurisdiction, a judge ordered county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples seeking them. However, that order was put on hold by the state's Supreme Court. With a hearing scheduled for November 6, the fate of the state's 2005 voter-approved marriage ban hangs in the balance. As Talking Points Memo reports, Davis commented that "there is nothing he can do with regards to gay marriage" while Brownback attacked him for not being willing to defend the ban:

Davis was a lawmaker when the Legislature debated [the marriage ban], and he said Monday that he did not support the constitutional amendment because he believed it would have an adverse effect on the welcoming image the state has had for decades. But he added that the people of Kansas decided by a significant majority to put the prohibition in the constitution, and he respects that decision.

"The fact of the matter is that at this particular time there is nothing I can do, there is nothing Gov. Brownback can do to impact this issue," Davis said. "It is in the court system."

Brownback noted that 70 percent of Kansans voted for the amendment.

"There is something that Rep. Davis and I can do on this and that is as governor defend our constitution, and he is not even saying whether he would defend our constitution where our people have voted on this issue," Brownback said.

Brownback also held a rally Monday against gay marriage.

The pair met again Tuesday night for a second debate and again the question of marriage equality arose, with each candidate taking similar postures. 

Watch the second debate for yourself (where the subject of marriage comes up at about the 31:30 mark), AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Kansas Candidates For Governor Debate Gay Marriage: VIDEO" »


Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback Rallies Against Gay Marriage: VIDEO

Brownback

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback joined some 100 rally-goers in Wichita on Saturday in opposition to gay marriage and in support of the state's voter-approved anti-gay constitutional amendment. 

Back in 2005, a referendum stating marriage "shall be constituted by one man and one woman only" was approved by 70% of state voters.

The Wichita Eagle reports:

“The state of Kansas has voted on this, the people of Kansas have voted on this,” he said. “We need to keep pushing those issues and keep surging … surge forward into the election cycle.”

Brownback also used the rally — billed by the FRC as a “Standing for the American Family and Traditional Marriage” event — to marshal conservative voters for the November election.

“We need to push forward our candidates that stand for this country, that stand for faith, that stand for family, that stand for freedom,” he said. “This faith, family, freedom, that’s the name of the bus,” Brownback said, motioning toward a bus the FRC had decorated as part of its whistle-stop tour. “It’s also the name of the basic American philosophy, guys. The motto of the nation remains, ‘In God we trust.’”

HuelskampIn addition to Brownback, there were brief speeches by a number of other people, including Josh Duggar of TLC’s “19 Kids & Counting” reality TV show and 1st District U.S. Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Fowler, who described judicial intervention in the same-sex marriage issue as a battle, and “the battle is on,” he said.

Earlier this month, Huelskamp [pictured right] was rated one of the 19 "most anti-equality" members of Congress by the HRC.  

Watch a KSN news report on the rally and the dozen or so counter-protesters who showed up to voice support for LGBT rights, AFTER THE JUMP...

Kansas falls under the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, which has already ruled Utah's same sex marriage ban unconstitutional. One same-sex marriage licenses has already been issued, but additional marriages have been placed on temporary hold by the state Supreme Court while it considers whether the state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional. A hearing in the case is set for November 6. 

Continue reading "Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback Rallies Against Gay Marriage: VIDEO" »


Kansas Supreme Court Issues Temporary Stay on Gay Marriages, Hearing Set for November

Kansas

In response to a district judge's order on Wednesday, a marriage license was issued to a same-sex couple in Johnson County, Kansas earlier today - the state's most populous county. The news prompted Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt to ask the state Supreme Court to intervene and halt counties from issuing more licenses to same-sex couples.

Now it appears the couple who obtained the license will be the only same-sex married couple in the state for now. 

The Associated Press reports:

Angela and kelliThe state Supreme Court cited federal court rulings against gay marriage bans in its brief order but blocked Moriarty's order in Johnson County, "in the interest of establishing statewide consistency." It set a hearing for Nov. 6 and said it would consider whether the state's ban on gay marriage is permissible under the U.S. Constitution.

The Johnson County newlyweds, Kelli and Angela, asked to be identified only by their first names to help protect their privacy, but did agree to allow a photograph of them after the ceremony to be used. In a statement released through the gay-rights group Equality Kansas, they said they wanted to celebrate privately.


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