Metro Weekly

Supreme Court, Day 1: What the Justices said on same-sex marriage.

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“Suppose a state said, because we think that the focus of marriage really should be on procreation, we’re not going to give marriage anymore to any couple where both people are over the age of 55. Would that be constitutional?” — Justice Elena Kagan

“If you redefine marriage to include same-sex couples, you must — you must permit adoption by same-sex couples, and there’s considerable disagreement among sociologists as to what the consequences of raising a child in a single-sex family, whether that is harmful to the child or not.” — Justice Antonin Scalia

“I’m curious. When did it become unconstitutional to exclude homosexual couples from marriage? 1791? 1868, when the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted? When did the law become this?” — Justice Scalia

“If the issue is letting the States experiment and letting the society have more time to figure out its direction, why is taking a case now the answer? We let issues perk, and so we let racial segregation perk for 50 years, from 1898 to 1954.” — Justice Sonia Sotomayor

“If you tell a child that somebody has to be their friend, I suppose you can force the child to say, ‘This is my friend,’ but it changes the definition of what it means to be a friend. And that’s, it seems to me, what supporters of Proposition 8 are saying here.” — Justice John Roberts

“Traditional marriage has been around for thousands of years. Same-sex marriage is very new. I think it was first adopted in The Netherlands in 2000. So there isn’t a lot of data about its effect. But you want us to step in and render a decision based on an assessment of the effects of this institution, which is newer than cell phones or the internet? I mean we are not — we do not have the ability to see the future.” — Justice Samuel Alito

“You’re really asking, particularly because of the sociological evidence you cite, for us to go into uncharted waters. I just wonder if the case was properly granted.” — Justice Anthony Kennedy

“They want their parents to have full recognition and full status. The voice of those children is important in this case, don’t you think?” — Justice Kennedy

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Randy Shulman is Metro Weekly's Publisher and Editor-in-Chief. He can be reached at