Some predictions are rather safe to make. 2012 is almost certain to be a determinative year on the issue of same-sex marriage. Multiple courts appear poised to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act [DOMA] and, even more urgently, the appeal on California’s Proposition 8 at the Ninth Circuit U. S. Court of Appeals will set up a certain appeal to the U. S. Supreme Court. Given the facts of this case and the significance of the nation’s most populous state, the Supreme Court is almost certain to take the case. This sets the stage for the courts to make some determinative statement on same-sex marriage within the next several months — a decision that will go a long way toward setting the direction of the larger culture.
At the same time, the same-sex marriage issue will play a part in the 2012 presidential campaign. The reason for this is quite simple. The issue of same-sex marriage is about far more than marriage as a legal institution and about more than sexuality and personal autonomy. It is the great inescapable issue, and we will know in fairly short order what all the candidates believe about the issue.
Then again, maybe not. Read more