Marriage on Trial

"It could be the Roe v. Wade of marriage."

That's what pundits and prognosticators predict will happen, should the U.S. Supreme Court mandate legalized same-sex marriage on all 50 states. More than 40 years ago, the Court attempted to end another deeply dividing political, social and moral debate ― abortion ― in its Roe v. Wade decision. It backfired … badly. Like the legalization of abortion, the outcome of the upcoming marriage decision will likely impact you, your family, community and the nation for years to come.

On April 28, lawyers presented arguments before the nine Justices on whether states (and voters) have the right to define marriage as one man and one woman, and, in turn, reject same-sex marriage.   In recent years, a number of damaging federal-court decisions helped to set the stage for redefining marriage. So far, of the 36 states now recognizing same-sex marriage, two-thirds of those have been ordered to do so by judges, who've declared as unconstitutional marriage-related state statutes and constitutional amendments ― passed either by voters or their representatives. These are the same marriage amendments sponsored, in part, and supported by Focus on the Family and its network of state-based Family Policy Councils (FPCs).  Since there have been several mixed rulings around the nation, the Court must now decide. A ruling is expected the end of June when the Court concludes its current session.

The U.S. Supreme Court isn't the only venue where the issue of defining marriage is being debated.  The public square is filled with false, but often-repeated narratives, such as "same-sex marriage is a constitutional right," "a majority of Americans support same-sex marriage" and "two dads equal a mom." These messages often overrun the voices pointing out the value of traditional marriage for children, family and society.

Oral Arguments:

Question One: "Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex?"

Listen to the argument.

Read the transcript.

Question Two: "Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state?"

Listen to the argument.

Read the transcript.

Focus on the Family President Jim Daly attended the oral arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court. Read his statement here.

What Is An Amicus Brief?

An amicus — or "friend of the court" — brief is one that is written and offered by a non-party to the case, usually with special expertise or experience, who is interested in the issue and wishes to help educate the court with regard to matters not generally within the court's knowledge.

More than 140 amicus briefs were received by the U.S. Supreme Court; slightly more than half of the briefs favor same-sex marriage.

To review the complete list in its entirety:

In the following section, we've highlighted several key amicus briefs for your consideration.

Important Links Related To The Cases:

Focus On The Family and Its Public Policy Partner Family Policy Alliance:

Adult Children of Same-Sex Parents:

Religious Organizations:

Experts In Favor Of Traditional Marriage:

Same-Sex Couples:

States (KY, MI, OH and TN):

© 2015 Focus on the Family