The push for updated wording in Michigan marriage laws

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- It's been months since the Supreme Court lifted the ban on same sex marriage but the wording in the Michigan marriage laws did not follow suit.

When couples go to the county clerk to get their marriage license, they're required to read excerpts.  It's a list of laws using outdated language reading "Marriage is inherently a unique relationship between a man and a woman."

Kent County Clerk Mary Hollinrake says making changes to these laws are completely out of her hands.

She says that a commission in Lansing is expected to review more 250 laws and then pass them on to the State Legislature for voting.

63rd District Court Judge Sara Smolenski says she's married couples who have talked about their marriage application process being very uncomfortable due to the outdated wording.

Smolenski says the process to get the wording in these laws changed is too slow, and she's hoping for change.

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8 comments

  • Stay In San FranSausage-Tuck

    It is worded that way because a majority of voters in this state want it worded that way. Face it, gays can have the feds come in and overturn the laws which the people of this state legally enact until the cows come home, but the one thing that they can not do is change the way that the people of this state think. We believe that we have the right to refrain from supporting an activity that we do not believe is right. That is different than discrimination, that is freedom of expression. As a landlord I have a right not to enable activities I find objectionable by refusing to provide a location for it to take place. And no federal laws will stop me from doing that. That is the reality which you need to wake up to. Laws don’t change anything anymore. Nobody follows them, and only the most serious of them are ever enforced, and even then they are not enforced at all consistently. The majority of the people in this state do not believe homosexuality is acceptable behavior, and despite treasonous dictators forcing their laws on us we won’t treat homosexuality any differently than we ever have. Not in this state. And certainly not in most of west Michigan.

    • Karen Smith

      Agreed. People do need to wake up to the fact that state judges and legislators have had their authority undermined by DC. People need to wake up to the fact that state autonomy has been declared illegal. And people need to wake up to the fact that the US Constitution has been rendered null and void by our own federal government.

  • Kevin Rahe

    I’m sorry, but when you remove from an institution the only thing that you could say has always been the essential part of it, it’s not reasonable to expect every reference to it to comport with every new meaning someone might attach to it.

  • Kevin Rahe

    Amazingly, the Obergefell decision actually contains the following argument:

    “An ability, desire, or promise to procreate is not and has not been a prerequisite for a valid marriage in any State. In light of precedent protecting the right of a married couple not to procreate, it cannot be said the Court or the States have conditioned the right to marry on the capacity or commitment to procreate.”

    That’s like saying that because the government doesn’t condition the receipt of food stamps on a claim that the recipient is hungry, that food stamps shouldn’t be denied to a group of people whom we could never expect to be hungry. In other words, it’s like claiming that food stamps aren’t about getting food to people who need it, because a declaration of such need isn’t a prerequisite to receiving them.

    Obergefell is nothing but a farce foisted on the American people, and its impact on practice both public and private should be resisted at every opportunity.