In Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. 644 (2015), the US Supreme Court ruled, by a vote of 5-4, that the right of homosexuals to enter into marriage is protected by the US Constitution. Writing for the majority, Justice Kennedy stated that "the Constitution promises liberty to all within its reach, a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm, to define and express their identity." Citing Griswold v. Connecticut, the Court affirmed that the fundamental rights found in the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process Clause "extend to certain personal choices central to individual dignity and autonomy, including intimate choices that define personal identity and beliefs," but the "identification and protection" of these fundamental rights "has not been reduced to any formula." As the Supreme Court has found in cases such as Loving v. Virginia, Zablocki v. Redhail, and Turner v. Safley, this extension includes a fundamental right to marry.
The gist of this reasoning is that the rights of individuals to have autonomy to make decisions and express themselves in relationships is fundamentally more important than the government's interest in regulating such relationships. It seems to me that this reasoning is capable of being extended to other relationships which are currently prohibited by law. And now we are seeing what may be the beginning of the next wave of litigation that seeks to push the envelope.
A parent is New York, identity and not even gender disclosed, has fled a petition asking a federal court to invalidate New York laws which prohibit marriage between a parent and child. The "child" is an adult, and - for reasons not disclosed - the couple is incapable of conceiving and giving birth to a child.
If they are both adults, capable of making rational decisions for themselves, and incapable of giving birth to defective babes, then why should they NOT have the right to make that decision for themselves? While I do NOT endorse incestuous relationships, I cannot conceive of a reason why the state should be required to allow homosexual marriage but be allowed to ban this proposed marriage.
If this parent-child barren marriage is allowed to proceed, then other incestuous couples will argue that genetic counselling, amniocentesis, and abortion on demand will allow them to avoid giving birth to defective children so they, too, should have the right to marry.
If this sounds preposterous to you, let me assure you that the idea of homosexual marriage being the law of the land would have been quite preposterous to the citizens of the 1950's, 1960's, and even the 1970's, and now it is legal.
What seemed like a preposterous joke yesterday may become confounding, perplexing . . . and legal tomorrow.
After incestuous marriages are allowed, then what group comes next: adult-child unions? Human-animal relationships? If you want to guffaw like the kids in the picture above, then in a few years you may reacting in bewildered amazement like the old dude in the second picture.