ALBANY, July 6, 2006 ( – Today New York’s highest court ruled 4-2 to uphold New York’s Constitution barring same-sex marriage. New York’s court of appeals reviewed four appeals filed by homosexual couples and ruled that the parties have no right to be issued marriage licenses by local officials. This leaves Massachusetts as the only state legally allowing same-sex marriages. Same-sex marriage bans are currently pending in New Jersey, California and Washington.

Mathew D. Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel, commented: “We are pleased that this latest attempt by the homosexual agenda to radically redefine our culture has been stopped dead in its tracks.” Liberty Counsel has been active in every one of the New York cases since they were filed, and filed legal briefs defending traditional marriage before the court of appeals.

Justice Robert S. Smith stated for the Court, “We hold that the New York Constitution does not compel recognition of marriages between members of the same sex. Whether such marriages should be recognized is a question to be addressed by the legislature.”

The Court held that the state of New York had at least two rational reasons for refusing to recognize same-sex marriages. “First, the Legislature could rationally decide that, for the welfare of children, it is more important to promote stability, and to avoid instability, in opposite-sex than in same-sex relationships. … The Legislature could [also] rationally believe that it is better, other things being equal, for children to grow up with both a mother and a father. Intuition and experience suggest that a child benefits from having before his or her eyes, every day, living models of what both a man and a woman are like.” The Court also stated, “The idea that same-sex marriage is even possible is a relatively new one. Until a few decades ago, it was an accepted truth for almost everyone who ever lived, in any society in which marriage existed, that there could be marriages only between participants of different sex. A court should not lightly conclude that everyone who held this belief was irrational, ignorant or bigoted. We do not so conclude.”

Staver added, “The court of appeals agreed with millennia of human history regarding traditional marriage. Marriage is distinct from other personal relationships. The marital union of a man and a woman uniquely contributes to the continuing well-being of men and women, to society, to children and to the state. To recognize marriage between people of the same sex would result in the abolition of male and female by making gender irrelevant, and the abolition of gender would have devastating effects on children. Children do best when raised with a mom and a dad. We must not rest until we have once and for all defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman in the United States Constitution.”

Next week on July 10, 2006, Staver will be presenting oral arguments before the California Court of Appeals in defense of California’s marriage laws.

  See the full ruling online: