American Foundation for Equal Rights Overview
An integral part of our nation’s character and laws is the principle that all Americans are entitled to be treated equally by their government. And more than 30 years ago, in its landmark decision to strike down bans on interracial marriage, the Supreme Court of the United States recognized that marriage is one of the basic civil rights of man.
Proposition 8 amended the California Constitution to eliminate marriage rights for same-sex couples. As a result, the State of California is in violation of the United States Constitution, the “Supreme Law of the Land.” The United States Constitution guarantees every American basic fundamental rights, including the right to equal protection under the law.
As its first step in its mission to advance equal rights for every American, The Foundation filed a federal court challenge against Proposition 8 in May 2009. The case’s significance has seen it move swiftly toward trial, which began on January 11, 2010.
Specifically, Proposition 8:
- Violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
- Violates the Due Process Clause by impinging on fundamental liberties.
- Singles out gays and lesbians for a disfavored legal status, thereby creating a category of “second-class citizens.”
- Discriminates on the basis of gender.
- Discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation.
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