Religious Right Responds to DOMA Decision: 'Absurd'; 'Profound Injustice'; 'Shameful Day in American History' (UPDATED)

Religious Right activists are none too pleased, to say the least, about today's DOMA decision.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan and Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops:

Today is a tragic day for marriage and our nation. The Supreme Court has dealt a profound injustice to the American people by striking down in part the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The Court got it wrong. The federal government ought to respect the truth that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, even where states fail to do so. The preservation of liberty and justice requires that all laws, federal and state, respect the truth, including the truth about marriage. It is also unfortunate that the Court did not take the opportunity to uphold California’s Proposition 8 but instead decided not to rule on the matter. The common good of all, especially our children, depends upon a society that strives to uphold the truth of marriage. Now is the time to redouble our efforts in witness to this truth. These decisions are part of a public debate of great consequence. The future of marriage and the well-being of our society hang in the balance.

Marriage is the only institution that brings together a man and a woman for life, providing any child who comes from their union with the secure foundation of a mother and a father.

Our culture has taken for granted for far too long what human nature, experience, common sense, and God’s wise design all confirm: the difference between a man and a woman matters, and the difference between a mom and a dad matters. While the culture has failed in many ways to be marriage-strengthening, this is no reason to give up. Now is the time to strengthen marriage, not redefine it.

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council:

We are encouraged that the court learned from the disaster of Roe v. Wade and refrained from redefining marriage for the entire country. However, by striking down the federal definition of marriage in DOMA, the Court is asserting that Congress does not have the power to define the meaning of words in statutes Congress itself has enacted. This is absurd. The Defense of Marriage Act imposes no uniform definition of marriage upon the individual states. However, the states should not be able to impose varying definitions of marriage upon the federal government. The ruling that the federal government must recognize same-sex 'marriages' in states that recognize them raises as many questions as it answers. For example, what is the status of such couples under federal law if they move to another state that does not recognize their 'marriage?' This decision throws open the doors for whole new rounds of litigation.

Gordon Klingenschmitt, Pray In Jesus Name Project:

Friends, today is a shameful day in American history. When courts refuse to enforce good existing laws (including God's law), they give (by default) permission for sin to run wild across America. But when they claim the Founding Fathers somehow endorse sodomy, they have betrayed all that God and the Foundering Fathers ever stood for.

Bill Donohue, Catholic League:

It is clear from today’s two rulings that the ball has been moved down the field to a point where the pro-gay marriage side is in the red zone. Whether they can be stopped from crossing the goal line depends solely on the prospects of having a constitutional amendment affirming marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

William Owens, Coalition of African-American Pastors:

"We are devastated that the Supreme Court succumbed to political pressure by voting to weaken the sacred institution. They neglected our most precious children who need a mother and a father united in marriage for healthy development," said Rev. William Owens, President of CAAP. "The African-American community has already been plagued with problems related to children growing up in single parent households. This ruling will only accelerate the further erosion of our communities and society."

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"We will not give up on marriage as the solid social institution recognized by cultures worldwide," he said. "It is time for African-Americans and the Christian community to rise up and renew their efforts to protect marriage and strengthen the families in their communities. African-Americans pay a disproportionate price as collateral damage of the aggressive gay agenda, and it will take leaders across the country to resist the cultural shift on marriage."

Louis Sheldon and Andrea Lafferty, Traditional Values Coalition:

Some days our civilization erodes slightly in feet and inches, other days it drops a mile at a time. Today is one of those days when our culture's decline is widely felt.

The climate in America has changed because America has become a blur. Our government is a scandal-ridden, ominous force operating outside the U.S. Constitution. There is no long any "Unum" to which the many can rally.

Justice Scalia's great dissent on DOMA today needs to be preserved for that day in the future when the real impact of this decision is felt, that day when perhaps another generation assesses who spoke up and what was done when a great darkness began to overtake our country.

Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America:

Today the Supreme Court issued the Roe v. Wade of marriage. These rulings will continue to divide our Republic just as Roe continues to do 40 years later. The Supreme Court continues to lose credibility at an alarming rate with today’s decision.

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While the justices sit in their high chairs, these decisions will have very real-life consequences for American families, especially as it relates to our religious liberties. Those who hold a Biblical view of marriage can expect much persecution from the government in the years to come. In addition the thirty-eight states that have affirmed the traditional definition of marriage can expect to be dragged into future courts. The Justices have thrust us into another life-long battle for religious freedom and a bitter dispute for truth, just as they did with Roe.

Janice Shaw Crouse, Concerned Women for America:

The Supreme Court rulings fly in the face of reams of research showing that the best household arrangement for children is a married mom and dad. It contradicts centuries of experience across time and cultures for the best family structure for strong nations. It represents a national experiment in social reconstruction at the expense of our children's futures and the future of America. These decisions repudiate--with a vengeance--the sacred trust of the founders who built this great nation 'under God' and on a foundation of Judeo- Christian principles that have stood the test of time."

Fr. Shenan J. Boquet, Human Life International:

"We must continue to demand that our political leaders recognize and protect this most natural institution especially in this time of intense bigotry and discrimination toward those who defend marriage in the public square," said Father Boquet.

"Most Americans know that this debate over marriage will never ultimately be settled by the Court, for at least two reasons," said Father Boquet. "First, those who are leading the assault on marriage have demonstrated again and again their disdain for laws that defend marriage and for the will of those with whom they disagree. Theirs is a crusade against both faith and reason, and they are no more likely to stop with a court decision than are the defenders of marriage."

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"Finally we note that these decisions do not bode well for the freedom of those religious institutions, such as the Catholic Church, who can only uphold the true definition of marriage. We expect that persecution of the Church will increase as opponents of true marriage demand that no dissent be tolerated, and that religious institutions participate in performing 'marriage' ceremonies for same-sex couples or suffer charges of discrimination. We are prepared for these inevitable events, and we stand in solidarity and hope with all who defend marriage."

Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel:

Today, the United States Supreme Court has lost its legitimacy as an arbiter of the Constitution and the rule of law. Today is the death of the Court’s legacy, because the decision in the Federal Defense of Marriage Act case defies logic and is a pure invention of a handful of Justices.

Marriage predates government and civil authorities. No civil authority, including the Supreme Court, has the authority to redefine marriage. Marriage was not created by religion or government and is ontologically a union of one man and one woman. For any Court or civil authority to think it has the authority to redefine marriage is the height of hubris. Deconstructing marriage will hurt children and society. While today’s decision on DOMA did not redefine marriage, it has provided the foundation on which to do so. Today’s decision is the equivalent of the 1972 contraception decision involving unmarried couples and the so-called right to privacy on which the 1973 abortion decision in Roe v. Wade was constructed. Today, the Supreme Court has damaged its image, lost legitimacy, and set in motion considerable harm to society and to the State of the Union.

Richard Viguerie:

Such a ruling is certainly the height of mindless legalism and in place of the duly expressed will of the people of California it substitutes a strange rule of the elite for our federal system of representative government.

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While we decry the Supreme Court’s erosion of government’s foundational role in creating a moral order for society, the most frightening part of today’s decisions is that the Court appears to have removed the power to order society’s moral framework from “We the People,” and vested it in an elite class of judges and public officials who may ignore our will at their pleasure.

Brian Brown, National Organization for Marriage:

"In a miscarriage of justice the US Supreme Court has refused to consider the decision of a single federal court judge to overturn the perfectly legal action of over 7 million California voters who passed Proposition 8 defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman," said Brain Brown, NOM's president. "The Supreme Court's holding that proponents of an initiative had no legal right to appeal ignores California law and rewards corrupt politicians for abandoning their duty to defend traditional marriage laws. It's imperative that Congress continue to preserve the right of states to protect true marriage and refuse to recognize faux marriages performed in other states or countries."

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"There is a stench coming from this case that has now stained the Supreme Court. They've allowed corrupt politicians and judges to betray the voters, rewarding them for their betrayal. It's an illegitimate decision. We and millions of other Americans will refuse to accept this rogue decision rewarding corruption. " Brown said.

Rick Scarborough, Vision America Action and Tea Party Unity:

Reacting to the Supreme Court decision in United States v. Windsor, striking down the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) of 1996, Vision America Action President Dr. Rick Scarborough declared: "The definition of marriage is not within the purview of the United States Supreme Court, or any other court, for that matter. God defines marriage. Governments either conform to His will or ignore it -- at their very great peril."

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"Justice Kennedy has shown utter contempt for constitutional self-government and seems interested only in promoting the use of state power to displace biblical values and to enforce sexual immorality," Scarborough said. "This is a profound threat to the freedoms of religion, speech and association."

Gary Marx, Faith and Freedom Coalition:

Today's ruling by the Supreme Court on the Defense of Marriage Act is a direct ATTACK on the foundation of American families. Our opponents have shown that they won’t stop until they’ve completely redefined what marriage means, and we can’t let them win.

The Faith & Freedom Coalition is dedicated to defending marriage. Study after study has shown that children do best when raised in a home with a married mother and father. Marriage and family are the foundation of a civil society, and we must not let that be taken away.

Richard Land, Southern Baptist Convention:

“Same-sex marriage in America has been a divisive and controversial issue for some time—and will continue to be,” says Southern Evangelical Seminary President Richard Land. “Today is a devastating day for traditional marriage and religious freedom.

“In spite of the blow to this sacred union, we must always remember that marriage is precious, a biblical gift, and one that should not have been tainted by redefining it in a way that is counter to God’s plan for families and for America. Defining marriage for the American people is way above the Supreme Court’s pay grade. God created marriage, and He has defined its parameters, regardless of what the majority of Supreme Court justices might think.”

Gary Bauer, American Values:

The Supreme Court today struck down a portion of the Defense of Marriage Act that prohibits federal benefits from being awarded to same-sex couples only in states that permit same-sex marriage. I agree with Justice Scalia and the dissent that this was an overreach of the court's authority, striking down an overwhelming vote of Congress and the signature of a Democratic president. It hastens the day when same-sex marriage will be forced on the American people.

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Make no mistake about it: The legal battle over the definition of marriage is in reality a battle over whether America will be completely ripped away from its Judeo-Christian foundation. While the media continue to act as if this is only about marriage rights, it is ultimately a battle over religious liberty. Today's rulings guarantee that it will continue to rage.

Harry Jackson, High Impact Leadership Coalition:

Todd Starnes, Fox News:

Mike Huckabee, Fox News:

Ralph Reed, Faith and Freedom Coalition:

Bryan Fischer, American Family Association:

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