What is Prop 8?

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What is Prop 8?
Prop 8 is also known as the Proposition 8 or the California Marriage Protection Act. The Act was passed in the state elections on November 2008. Prop 8 is all about a new provision added to the California Constitution, Section 7.5 of the Declaration of Rights. The provision aims to do away with same sex marriage. It states that only a man and a woman is legally binding or accepted for marriage in California.

Prop 8 was a ballot proposition fought by ‘Yes on 8’ and ‘No on 8’ groups of voters.

The ‘Yes on 8’ group is composed of people who were induced by their religious beliefs and conservatism. People with this group believe in the heterosexual and monogamous type of marriage. They argue that the United States was established by the Judeo-Christian morals.

Many organizations supported the ‘Yes on 8’ group. Some of the organizations are as follows:

  • The National Organization for Marriage (NOM)
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints a.k.a. Mormon Church
  • A group of conservative politicians mostly from the Republican voters.
  • The groups mentioned above supported the Proposition 8 arguing that couples of the heterosexual orientation makes better parents. Moreover, the groups stressed out that same sex marriage would lead to the degeneration of straight marriage.

    On the other hand, ‘No on 8’ group is composed of people who consider that straight people as well as the gays and lesbians should have equal rights when it comes to talks about marriage. They argue that everyone must be given equal rights to marry the person of their choice, no matter what sexual orientation they have.

    The ‘No on 8’ group is composed of people from politics and religious sectors who are liberated when it comes to thinking. Majority from the Democrats also supported the ‘No on 8’. The different groups stressed out that the issue on same sex marriage is all a question of freedom of expression.

    However, with vote of 52.5 percent against 46.5 percent, the ‘Yes on 8’ won. On November 5, 2008, the proposition 8 was implemented prohibiting the marriage of same sex. Immediately after, the ‘No on 8’ group protested. However, the court ruled out that all same sex marriage that happened before the implementation of Prop 8 will remain valid and legal. On the other hand, all same sex marriage that will be done after the ballot will be deemed illegal and void.

    On the year 2010, a great challenge was faced by the Proposition 8 when California denied marriage licenses to two couples, Kristen Perry and Sandra Steir, and Paul Kutami and Jeffrey Zarillo. The case was heard but Judge Vaughn Walker ruled that the state of California has no reason to reject the marriage license. He argued that marriage of gays and lesbians should be given equal treatment as with the straight marriages. Judge Walker argued that being gay or lesbian is not a choice. Moreover, he explained that Proposition 8 was merely established by customary opposition of the religions against homosexuality. The group composing the ‘Yes on 8’ had planned to contest Judge Walker’s decision.

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