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Jurors rule that “conversion therapy” is consumer fraud in JONAH case

Conversion therapy cases

njThink Progress has a story:

After three weeks of trial, a New Jersey jury reached a quick verdict in the case against JONAH, a Jewish ex-gay organization sued under the state’s consumer fraud laws. The jury unanimously found against JONAH on all counts, meaning it will have to pay upwards of $25,000 in damages to the clients and their families for undergoing ex-gay therapy.

The verdict is a big loss for the ex-gay therapy movement. Though JONAH was not permitted to present “expert” testimony — the judge compared it to testimony about the Earth being flat — the extensive trial offered a thorough examination of various ex-gay programs. This included not only the troubling practices of the Alan Downing, the JONAH-affiliated counselor who worked with the plaintiffs, but also a popular People Can Change retreat program called Journey Into Manhood (JiM). Two of the stars of TLC’s My Husband’s Not Gay, both Mormon, testified in the trial on behalf of their experiences with JiM.

Equality Case Files has more:

Verdict for Plaintiffs on almost all counts. All votes were unanimous (7-0)

The only no votes were (Referring to the July Verdict Form linked below):

Question 9 & 10 (Plaintiffs Michael Ferguson) as to defendants Arthur Goldberg and JONAH, Inc.; Yes as to Alan Downing.

Question 13 & 14 (Plaintiff Bella Levin) No as to Alan Downing; Yes as to defendants Arthur Goldberg and JONAH, Inc.

ALL OTHER QUESTIONS were answered YES

Ascertainable Losses:
Benji Unger (Question 4) $17,950
Chaim Levin (Question 8) $650
Michael Ferguson (Question 12): $1,050
Bella Levin (Question 16): $4,000
Jo Bruck (Question 20): $500

I believe these dollar amounts will be tripled by the judge.

EQCF also has the trial transcripts so you’ll want to go to their Facebook page, linked above. The jury didn’t take very long to decide the case.

134 Comments

  • 1. Aaron  |  June 25, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    YAY! Down with the evil bastards!

  • 2. guitaristbl  |  June 25, 2015 at 3:56 pm

    A great decision, days or hours (most likely three days) before marriage equality is decided once and for all.

  • 3. mu2  |  June 25, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    I suppose the defendants could sue one of those groups that promise to turn straight kids gay.

  • 4. seannynj  |  June 25, 2015 at 6:09 pm

    Completely not surprised at the outcome :-)

  • 5. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    It's about time this trial is over and the verdict is in, but unfortunately it WON'T be the end of idiots who believe they can harm others just because of their own personal bigotry!!!

  • 6. RemC  |  June 25, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    The defendants' slimy lawyer is insisting he'll appeal and is squawking about religious liberty taking a blow because of the verdict. What's particularly infuriating & galling is that, while JONAH was advertised as being based on the Torah, the plaintiffs all talked about how there was no religion present in the weekends & therapy sessions. I'm really pleased to see him lose this case. He deserved a unanimous verdict against the case he built and oh so much more.

  • 7. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:17 pm

    Good luck with that. The lawyer should look at his chances and save his clients some money!!!

  • 8. brandall  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    You literally took the words out of my mouth that as I going to comment they'll take the "religious liberty" angle in the press. Perhaps they will stick to their guns and appeal. Oh how grand, a SCOTUS JONAH decision for 6/26/17…can't be 6/26/16 because that is a Sunday and we need to follow the almost precedent of LGBTQ SCOTUS decisions (Lawrence, Windsor and Obergefell) all being released on 6/26.

  • 9. RemC  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    Rose, LiMandri was hired by the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund. You know how you'r always saying, you can't fix stupid. Well, this is like the guys at the Alliance Defending Freedom: like Bozo, they get knocked down and bounce right back up again.

    Hah: I just looked up the Fund. LiMandri is the head of it! Maggie Gallagher's on the board of directors, as is Fred Clark from the Witherspoon Institute. No, not stupid. Dangerous.

    "The Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund’s (FCDF) mission is to preserve religious freedom by providing protective legal services at the trial court level to persons whose religious liberty and free speech rights have been violated. FCDF is a nonprofit public-interest law firm which defends the conscience rights and religious freedom of those of all faiths and no faith. Our religious liberties are under siege more than ever before in our history. It is not enough that activists obtain rights for their interest group, but they want to take away our rights to free speech and religious freedom. The opposition is well-funded and tenacious in their desire to ensure their voice is heard and our voice silenced. FCDF offers a pro bono defense to those who have had their religious liberties violated. Charles LiMandri, President and Chief Counsel, has fought these battles for over two decades and will remain on the front line of this culture war for years to come. As a pro bono board certified trial attorney, Mr. LiMandri is experienced in successfully defending his clients in front of a judge and jury."

  • 10. RemC  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    I'm reading the transcripts of the closing arguments now. Here's a gem from Mr. LiMandri:

    "There is no dispute that my clients, Arthur Goldberg and Elaine Berk, both had adult gay sons, both their families struggled with their sons trying to work through the issues so that they could be as happy as possible. Both their sons decided to stay gay."

    Insert scream of frustration here.

  • 11. brandall  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    "Long Gays Journey into Night"

    Before I sign off for the evening:

    1) Obergefell will be released tomorrow…please, please I've planned a party on Saturday around this.

    2) 6-3….Roberts won't be on the wrong side of history

    3) No mention of the level of scrutiny…too much, too fast and not the right set of frameworks.

    4) A sharp rebuke about citing muffins, cakes, cookies, pies, tarts, breads, rolls, pastries….for…uh…what was the name of that 1972 case?……you know, the one with "The appeal is dismissed for want of a substantial federal question."

  • 12. weaverbear  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:07 pm

    Brandall- from your mouth to the Divine's ears!! I too fully expect this tomorrow. I 'm not willing to venture a guess whether it'll be 5-4 or 6-3. ( I'd love to see 6-3 as it just might make Scalia's brain explode!)

  • 13. davepCA  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Fingers crossed, Brandall. See you guys here tomorrow morning.

  • 14. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:21 pm

    Wow, a whole bunch of stupids……may they all fly into a Prop Wash……..lol!!!

  • 15. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    Again Wow, the sons DECIDED to stay Gay……..damn, stupid DOESN'T get any funnier!!

  • 16. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Brandall, try and get some sleep, if ya can….tomorrow is going to be a huge day……and hopefully some Pastor will ACTUALLY hold true to his word!!

  • 17. RnL2008  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    Here's an article for ya: http://www.northjersey.com/news/n-j-jury-finds-pr

    I have NEVER understood the whole get naked and spend time with your father……can someone please explain the logic behind that…….and it's NOT the first time I've heard about that being used.

  • 18. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    I'll be here and at SCOTUSblog again tomorrow. Been waiting for this day since the court announced their horrible erroneous '86 Bowers decision. I hope it is announced tomorrow. Another 48 hours will seem like another 29 Years.

  • 19. RemC  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Now, again, people have the choice to identify however they want in terms of their sexual orientation and now these days even in terms of their gender, but people also have the right, if they are unhappy, to seek help and stay in an orientation or a gender that is consistent with their anatomy, their biology and their view of what God intended for them.

    Talking about St Thomas More in his closing! "And as he did that as a brilliant lawyer and judge, and he did it as a great saint…"

    "and that you're exercising your faith in a manner consistent with what we understand are our
    rights as Americans, free exercise of religion under the First Amendment, not just the bully —

    MR. BROMLEY: Objection, your Honor.

    JUDGE BARISO: Counsel, let's stay away from the First Amendment, please.

    MR. LI MANDRI: Will do, your Honor."

    "as [plaintiff] Benjamin Unger admitted, he did have an attraction to the male posterior, that wasn't the word he used, I'm trying to be polite…"

    "Those who are Christians, and I would imagine it's the same for Muslims, healing through repentance is a recurring theme on what we are called to do to bring our lives back into conformity with God's will for us and purpose — for us is expressed in whatever holy scriptures we adhere to."

    "and then writing Wayne Besen, the notorious gay activist" (Truth Wins Out)

    "And tragically people who allow themselves to be caught up in any sexual addiction, but sadly, in the homosexual community it is more prevalent, from the studies we showed…"

    You know, there's also talk about addiction to porn. I mean, c'mon. A 17 or 18-year old isn't addicted. Insatiable, yes, but isn't that what 17-year old boys do?

    "[The co-founder of JONAH] says for many men growing out of SSA, it's like growing out of alcoholism or drug addiction, and you will need to be involved in healing for a long time."

    The heck with this. I'm skimming it cause it's so ridiculous. Those poor jurors. Bedtime, everybody!

  • 20. RobW303  |  June 26, 2015 at 1:53 am

    They've known the votes for weeks now, so no Scalia piñata party tomorrow. However, when the ruling comes down, I fully expect Scalia to read his full dissent. Cook the popcorn and get ready for some top-notch argle-bargle. Wonder what gems he'll pop this time that can be cited in our support in future cases?

  • 21. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 2:04 am

    I wish we could bring chairs and popcorn in the courtroom to hear his rant……hopefully it's better than 2 years ago……lol!!!

  • 22. Sagesse  |  June 26, 2015 at 3:57 am

    Karma.

    Schools Fear Gay Marriage Ruling Could End Tax Exemptions [New York Times]
    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/25/us/schools-fear

  • 23. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 4:15 am

    I would agree that these are possible issues even though folks have been trying desperately not to see the comparison to the racial issues……just because being Gay or Lesbian is NOT necessarily a physical trait like skin color, DOESN'T mean it's a choice……just like I have a handicap card for my car, to some I may NOT look disable, but that DOESN'T mean I'm not, it just means my disability is not as noticeable as say being in a wheelchair………the same can be said for sexual orientation……..just because we aren't RAINBOW skin color DOESN'T mean we aren't Gay or Lesbian…….and the next battle is going to be religion……..but that DOESN'T mean one's religious beliefs will be allowed to discriminate. We will start dealing with that issue, after Pride week is over.

  • 24. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 4:57 am

    Pre-Islamic sex in the Arabian Peninsula
    Mohamed Aleter
    Published: 25/06/2015 01:46 PM

    It can be said that sex before Islam was distinguished by freedom; that is, with regard to the way the subject was seen, approached and discussed. …

    1 – al-istibḍāʻ – Wherein a man would send his wife to another man who was a prominent member of the community, such as a poet, knight or person of good lineage; the stranger would then have intercourse with the woman and when she fell pregnant she would return to her husband.

    2 – al-muḵādana Roughly translated as ‘the taking of secret lovers,’ …

    3 – al-badal – Wherein two men would swap wives temporarily for pleasure and variety without instigating divorce procedures or exchanging marriage contracts…

    4 – al-muḍāmada – Wherein a woman would take one or two additional husbands in addition to her original husband … it was an applied and widespread custom.

    5 – ar-rahṭ – Wherein ten men would meet and have intercourse with one woman, and if the woman became pregnant she would send for all of them; she would then choose who was to be the father of the fetus she was carrying and no one could refuse to accept.

    6 – aṣḥāb ar-rāyāt (flag bearers) – These women, who were also referred to as al-baġāya or prostitutes by their contemporary name, would raise a flag to show that they were ready (and red is said to have been the chosen color of such flags.) Then men would come.

    The above six variations are the most famous types of pre-Islamic intercourse, and they differ from the type of intercourse which Islam would later sanction, and which is known today as aš-šuhūd, al-‘uqd and other names.

    With regard to homosexuality in pre-Islamic times, there are various stories, and it is difficult to discern their accuracy. Some people say it was widespread, while others refuse such ‘claims,’ basing their view on a theory that says the type of sexual orientation in question entered the Arab world from the neighboring cultures later on during the Islamic conquests. As for the issue of homosexuality among women, there is one unconfirmed story which claims that the first two women in the Arab Peninsula to prefer being intimate with one another other over intimacy with men were Zarqa al-Yamama and Hind bint al-Nuaman, daughter of the last Lakhmid king of Hira.

    https://now.mmedia.me/lb/en/blogs/565493-pre-isla

  • 25. TDGrove  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:00 am

    Scalia's dissent in the ACA case was astonishingly rude and confrontational. A direct attack on Roberts. I'm thinking that he unwittingly may be engaging in Conservative Conversion Therapy on Roberts.

  • 26. DeadHead  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:03 am

    Religious schools AND churches should lose their "tax exempt" status. These entities generate a lot of income that often does not get used for "charitable" purposes.

  • 27. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:04 am

    Scalia has never been thought of as a friendly and charming man. Everyone knows he's the biggest asshole on SCOTUS today, and quite possibly ever.

  • 28. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:12 am

    Be careful, brandall – I've been called "delusional" and otherwise criticized / vilified here for months now for repeatedly predicting that Roberts would vote in favor of marriage equality… a vote that every EoT commenter besides us two apparently thinks is "impossible"…

  • 29. Nyx  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:21 am

    Currently I'm leaving my house to catch the DC metro. I live just 4 stops from the Supreme Court building where I will stand outside as a witness to today's event, again Monday if need be. I’ve lived in DC for the past year (prior to that I was living in Palm Springs, CA for five years of this fight). I will be thinking of everyone past and present in this fight.

  • 30. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:23 am

    Be Safe and have a good time

  • 31. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:25 am

    I agree with ya…….just like if Churches want to get into politics, they should also lose their tax-exempt status……..frankly had the Mormon Church and the Knights of Columbus stated out of affairs that were NONE of their business, Prop 8 WOULDN'T have passed and all that money could have been spent elsewhere.

  • 32. scream4ever  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:30 am

    As we wait with baited breath, more good news from Mexico!
    http://www.boxturtlebulletin.com/2015/06/25/70164

  • 33. Guest972  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:32 am

    I have a side question…putting aside the fact we know how Scalia will rule, what does it say if ANY of the SCOTUS judges rule against us? There have been, what, 40+ rulings across the countryside in favor of equality and only 2 dissents. If some of SCOTUS rule against marriage equality are they actually saying that almost every judge across the country doesn't know what they're talking about? Let's take it to an extreme. What if we had 5,000 rulings in our favor? At some point wouldn't the SCOTUS judges think that if literally every judgment rules one way, then they themselves are erring by ruling the opposite way?

  • 34. mu2  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:34 am

    Oh, well, there will always be some who aspire to martyrdom of a sort…

  • 35. mu2  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:37 am

    I'm still offering 10 to 1 odds that Ober won't be announced until Monday. (Not that I'd mind losing that wager!)

  • 36. mu2  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:40 am

    Which exemptions they should never have been granted to begin with.

  • 37. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:47 am

    It's possible, but I don't think this particular day was added to have probably the MOST important ruling of the term come down on Monday.

  • 38. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:50 am

    To me and in my opinion……the Justices who will probably dissent today truly will not matter going forward. Most have expected Justice Scalia, Justice Thomas and Justice Alito to side against us……..what matters most to me is how broad or narrow the ruling will be…….I hope they drive a stake through Baker and I hope they finally give us heighten scrutiny……..but most important is to rule in our favor.

  • 39. SethInMaryland  |  June 26, 2015 at 5:53 am

    today in Northern Ireland case , it seems went very the well for the couples
    http://www.rte.ie/news/2015/0626/710732-gay-marri

  • 40. josejoram  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:00 am

    Just one hour left.

  • 41. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:01 am

    SCOTUSblog's live blog is up!!! Here's the link:

    http://www.scotusblog.com/2015/06/live-blog-of-op

  • 42. ebohlman  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:05 am

    Wow. My impression was that Guerrero is a pretty conservative place, comparable to a Deep South US state. Maybe they're following in the footsteps of Georgia.

  • 43. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:14 am

    Morning. I read this morning that there's something on the docket about the request for EBG and EK to recuse themselves from Obergefell. I thought that issue was already resolved. Any reason to be concerned that one or both might actually recuse themselves?

  • 44. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:17 am

    None whatsoever.

  • 45. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:19 am

    Someone blogged that on the SCOTUS site.

  • 46. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:23 am

    I hope he will say, "This ruling giving the imprimatur of the Constitution on same-sex marriage will have disastrous consequences. Homosexuals will come to believe that they have equal rights under the laws of the United States. Our courts will be tied up in lawsuits making the facetious claim that people have a right to participate in homosexual relationships and nevertheless be entitled to dignity and liberty. Gay activists will soon demand that they receive the approval of religious people who own businesses."

    Then in the first "Religious LIberty" case that reaches a federal judge, he or she can write, "As Justice Scalia observed in Obergefell (2015), gay people are entitled to dignity and liberty. This law was manifestly drafted and passed in an attempt to attack the dignity of gay people. It is unconstitutional."

  • 47. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:26 am

    Yes, I saw that. SCOTUSblog also gave the same answer.

  • 48. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:28 am

    Astonishingly, he IS thought of as friendly and charming by Justices Ginsburg and Kagan, who seem to be fairly close friends off the bench. But yes, as a judge, he is the biggest asshole on SCOTUS today and perhaps in history.

  • 49. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:29 am

    So much going on….I need coffee if I'm gonna make it through the day!!!

  • 50. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:30 am

    NO.

  • 51. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:33 am

    Ginsberg and Kagan are the ones who are being friendly and charming here, not Scalia. They both know the asshole has a very valuable vote.

  • 52. Steve27516  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:40 am

    EoT friends, I know that our work is not over, but we are standing at the door of a long-anticipated destination. Thank you for your companionship here on EoT during this process.

    Let's hold hands. And …

  • 53. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:43 am

    I'm holding your hand Steve…….we are damn well close now!!!

  • 54. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:46 am

    I really can't imagine a better group of people to have shared the journey with. You have so generously shared so much information and insight over the years that brought us here.

  • 55. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:48 am

    Can we not have the emotional stuff yet ? We dont even know it is coming down today, lets save them for Monday..

  • 56. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:48 am

    Yes, reading and joining in the discussions here has been quite educational. Today may be the last day I see you all.

  • 57. SethInMaryland  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:54 am

    4 boxes

  • 58. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:55 am

    Four boxes of opinions – ALL of the still-pending cases may be decided today!

  • 59. flyerguy77  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:56 am

    I thought they had 5 cases left

  • 60. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:56 am

    Oh my god guys four boxes ! This could be it..

  • 61. wes228  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:56 am

    5 cases left. 1 box of opinions usually has at least 2 opinions in it. So….!!!!

  • 62. allan120102  |  June 26, 2015 at 6:57 am

    4 boxes people I hope one is for Obergefell.This might be it.

  • 63. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:01 am

    It would be so cruel if they deliver 4 opinions BUT Obergefell.

  • 64. sfbob  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    Obergefell is the first opinion…Kennedy

  • 65. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    WE WON !!!!

  • 66. sfbob  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    5-4 in our favor!!!!

  • 67. jcmeiners  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    WIN!!!

  • 68. tigris26  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    OH MY GOD!!!!

  • 69. SethInMaryland  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    we won

  • 70. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    We Win OMG OMG OMG! 1st opinion of the day!

  • 71. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    Obergefell wins, 5-4, Kennedy opinion, 14th Amendment requires all states to recognize SSM – SSM now has Constitutional protection from the US Supreme Court!!!

  • 72. sfbob  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    on both questions

  • 73. mu2  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:02 am

    Damn…I have somethin' in my eye

  • 74. davepCA  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:03 am

    VICTORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    ON MSNBC NOW

  • 75. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:03 am

    The long wait is over.

  • 76. terryweldon  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:03 am

    Scotus blog
    Sixth Circuit is reversed.

  • 77. DACiowan  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:03 am

    The United States is now a marriage equality country.

  • 78. tigris26  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:04 am

    Guys I'm literally crying tears of joy!!! OMG!!!

  • 79. Waxr  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:04 am

    It's a 5-4 victory

  • 80. allan120102  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:04 am

    We won !!!!!!

  • 81. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:05 am

    Gosh all 4 conservatives wrote dissents..wont be able to handle so much venom. Could be 4 boxes all Obergefell.

  • 82. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:05 am

    Obergefell opinion is up!!! Here's the link:

    http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556

  • 83. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:06 am

    This SO makes up for the horrible awful 1986 Bowers decision when I was only 21.

  • 84. Raga  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:06 am

    No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right. The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed. It is so ordered.

    I'm a mess right now! A happy mess :)

  • 85. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:06 am

    3 boxes all Obergefell after all. Its going to be a huge one.

  • 86. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:06 am

    Obergefell took up 3 of the 4 boxes. It's a 103-page opinion.

  • 87. jcmeiners  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Fundamental Right and Equal Protection!

  • 88. TDGrove  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Baker explicitly overruled

  • 89. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Obergefell wins on BOTH Question 1 AND Question 2.

  • 90. sfbob  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:08 am

    Same here. I'm really just a sentimental fool.

  • 91. brandall  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:08 am

    10 Mentions of BAKER!

  • 92. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:08 am

    Both Due Process and Equal Protection

  • 93. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:09 am

    Marriage is a fundamental right. Baker v. Nelson is overruled.

  • 94. Elihu_Bystander  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:09 am

    What a Day; they really did it. WOW

  • 95. Waxr  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:09 am

    The electronic version of the opinion is up: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556

    Held
    : The Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-State.

  • 96. Dann3377  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:10 am

    Dallas clerks will waive 72 hour waiting. Marrying TODAY!

  • 97. NorthernAspect  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:10 am

    A proud day for the United States of America.

  • 98. FredDorner  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:11 am

    Congratulations America – you're finally growing up!

  • 99. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:11 am

    OMG!

  • 100. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:11 am

    Roberts reads dissent from the bench for the first time ever. Boo hoo.

  • 101. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:13 am

    Roberts endorses the appellate court's ruling; it "interpreted the Constitution correctly".

  • 102. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:14 am

    And now we await the response from the governors of Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia and the other 14 states. This should be interesting.

  • 103. tigris26  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:14 am

    ME TOO! I'm crying tears of joy like crazy! So happy! 😀

  • 104. Iggy_Schiller  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:14 am

    The Obergefell opinion is here: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556
    We won ^_^

  • 105. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Roberts :

    "If you are among the many Americans–of whatever sexual orientation–who favor expanding same-sex marriage, by all means celebrate today's decision. Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not Celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it."

    Oh we wil celebrate John but we won't do you the favour : We will celebrate what our constitution guarantees.

  • 106. samg68  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Can we call it just "marriage" now?

  • 107. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:16 am

    http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556

  • 108. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:16 am

    Here's a hug Raga……I totally understand the feeling!!!

  • 109. ianbirmingham  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:17 am

    The word "scrutiny" only appears in the Obergefell decision once:

    In 1993, the Hawaii Supreme Court held Hawaii’s law restricting marriage to opposite-sex couples constituted a classification on the basis of sex and was therefore subject to strict scrutiny under the Hawaii Constitution.

  • 110. brandall  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:17 am

    Virtual hugs to you, my dear friend

  • 111. Steve27516  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Yes! Tears of joy! And relief!

  • 112. flyerguy77  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:18 am

    nom came too quiet

  • 113. flyerguy77  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:19 am

    Robert thinks he can get both ways

  • 114. SoCal_Dave  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:24 am

    We win. The Constitution wins. America wins. Happy Day!

  • 115. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:26 am

    Roberts is an asshole. IT was delusional to think that he would support equal rights for gay people. He has never done that.

  • 116. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:27 am

    I oddly feel like a full 100% US Citizen for the first time….and I'm not even engaged! No one can ever tell me, you're not married (when/if I do), you're just shacking up.

  • 117. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:28 am

    Sutton and Cook wrote the decision expressly for him. You people who thought that he was an honorable person who would do the right thing were wrong. At least, we can all take pleasure in the fact that he is in dissent rather than writing for a majority.

  • 118. guitaristbl  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:29 am

    Ugh..Why do I do that to myself and read the dissents NOW ? I should stop, we have plenty of time for that..And I am still at Roberts..Scalia's should be even more hateful..!

  • 119. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:36 am

    I'm not reading them till tomorrow…at the earliest. Today is an Historic Day; no time for negativity. I bet that wolf is going to be wagging his tail right off his butt today.

  • 120. Steve27516  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:36 am

    We made it, Rose!

  • 121. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:37 am

    How nice that we are now full citizens of the United States of America.

  • 122. Dann3377  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:38 am

    So much for Monday! I'm glad you were wrong :)

  • 123. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:39 am

    We did and today married couples can travel across this Great Country knowing they are still married no MATTER what State they are in!!!

  • 124. RnL2008  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:40 am

    Jay, my sentiments EXACTLY…….thank you all for being here, sharing and getting to know each other…….there will be other fights, but this one is the most important one and we need to celebrate it…….I give each of you a hug and want you to know you are friends to me!!!

  • 125. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:42 am

    Me Neither! I knew we had won this on October 6th, last year when the court refused cert from the 4th, 10th, and 7th.

    If it wasn't clear at that time, it surely should have when the notorious RBG said she was joining this gay couple by the power invested in her by the "Constitution". No court had ever affirmed that prior to Obergefell, so how could she say that otherwise?

  • 126. SoCal_Dave  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:46 am

    JIm Obergefell speaking now on MSNBC

  • 127. LK2013  |  June 26, 2015 at 7:47 am

    Today is such a glorious, historic day!!!!!

    Everyone who celebrates equality and liberty should be happy!

    I certainly AM celebrating the Constitution, and a US Supreme Court with the humanity to grant protection and liberty and the freedom to marry someone of our choosing whom we LOVE to people who have been treated unfairly forever in this country.

    TAKE THAT, Sutton and the Sixth Circuit! I have been waiting for this day since Bowers in 1986!

    I took Monday off in anticipation of the decision coming on that day – what a happy surprise that it's out today!

    Even one more day is too long for those who are waiting to marry in states that still banned marriage equality.

    Congratulations to everyone who can marry now, and be recognized !!!!!!!!!

  • 128. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 8:07 am

    My husband and I both wept. It is curious that while the outcome was exactly what I expected–a 5-4 ruling–there was nevertheless a little bit of doubt that something might happen that would cause us to lose. What a relief that all has turned out well. Thank you, Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan.

  • 129. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 8:21 am

    "This decision is a victory for America."–President Obama.

  • 130. Tony MinasTirith  |  June 26, 2015 at 8:26 am

    OK. Who's in charge of the ME Wiki Map? I want it changed to all blue…..now.
    😀

  • 131. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 8:53 am

    Yes, we can.

    "Loving did not ask about a “right to interracial
    marriage”; Turner did not ask about a “right of
    inmates to marry”; and Zablocki did not ask about a “right
    of fathers with unpaid child support duties to marry.”
    Rather, each case inquired about the right to marry in its
    comprehensive sense, asking if there was a sufficient
    justification for excluding the relevant class from the
    right."

  • 132. JayJonson  |  June 26, 2015 at 9:10 am

    "This is not the first time the Court has been asked to adopt a cautious approach to recognizing and protecting fundamental rights. In Bowers, a bare majority upheld a law criminalizing same-sex intimacy. That approach might have been viewed as a cautious endorsement of the democratic process, which had only just begun to consider the rights of gays and lesbians. Yet, in effect, Bowers upheld state action that denied gays and lesbians a fundamental right and caused them pain and humiliation. As evidenced by the dissents in that case, the facts and principles necessary to a correct holding were known to the Bowers Court. That is why Lawrence held Bowers was “not correct when it was decided.” Although Bowers was eventually repudiated in Lawrence, men and women were harmed in the interim, and the substantial effects of these injuries no doubt lingered long after Bowers was overruled. Dignitary wounds cannot always be healed with the stroke of a pen."–Justice Kennedy for the Court.

  • 133. Raga  |  June 26, 2015 at 10:34 am

    Right back at ya, Rose! :)

  • 134. Raga  |  June 26, 2015 at 10:34 am

    Thanks, brandall. Me too, right back at you!

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