The Defense of Marriage Act, Per the Academy

Geoff Stone, former dean of Chicago Law & regular visiting professor at NYU. I’m fortunate enough to have taken a few classes with him: he does not mince words. Or lose arguments. Read:

Moreover, the Supreme Court has long recognized that the government can never lawfully treat one group of people worse than others because the majority deems that group “immoral,” “depraved,” unworthy, or sinful according to “God’s principles.” Such animus is not a constitutionally legitimate basis for government action. Yet this seems to be precisely what motivated Section 3 of DOMA.

Indeed, if we acknowledge, as we must, that Congress had never before second-guessed a state’s definition of marriage, and that the interests said to justify Section 3 have traditionally been understood to be within the exclusive domain of the States, it is difficult not to wonder what was really going on in Congress when it enacted DOMA.

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