LOUISVILLE (Worthy News)-- A federal judge ruled that Kentucky's law that recognized marriage as being between one man and one woman violated the constitutional rights of same-sex couples, however he placed a stay on his own decision, in effect placing his ruling on hold until the conclusion of the appeal process.
In 2004, Kentucky placed an amendment in its constitution that made it unconstitutional for the state to recognize or perform same-sex marriages or civil unions. The referendum was approved by 75 percent of the voters.
However, that law was struck down today by Judge John G. Heyburn II. The judge ruled that Kentucky's prohibition on same-sex couples violated the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution.
"As this Court has respectfully explained, in America even sincere and long-held religious views do not trump the constitutional rights of those who happen to have been out-voted," Heyburn wrote in his opinion.
"Sometimes, by upholding equal rights for a few, courts necessarily must require others to forebear some prior conduct or restrain some personal instinct. Here, that would not seem to be the case," he wrote.
"Assuring equal protection for same-sex couples does not diminish the freedom of others to any degree. Thus, same-sex couples' right to marry seems to be a uniquely 'free' constitutional right," Heyburn concluded.