“Same-sex” Marriage Case Isn’t Over

FOUNDATION: “SAME-SEX MARRIAGE CASE ISN’T OVER”

MONTGOMERY, AL: The
Foundation for Moral Law, a Montgomery-based legal
foundation that defends the
right to acknowledge God and the duty to
interpret the Constitution as written,
says a local case involving same-sex
marriage is not over, because the issue of
retroactivity has not yet been
decided.

In 2011 Paul Hard and David Fancher
went through a same-sex marriage
ceremony in Massachusetts and returned to live
in Alabama. On 1 August 2011
David Fancher was killed in an accident involving
a UPS truck. UPS paid a
settlement to the Fancher estate, but Hard was not
allowed to collect a
spousal share of the estate because, according to the
executor, Alabama law
did not recognize same-sex marriage and Hard was
therefore not a spouse. On
Hard’s behalf the Southern Poverty Law Center filed
suit against the State
of Alabama to have Alabama’s Sanctity of Marriage
Amendment declared
unconstitutional.

But a further complication arose.
Patricia Fancher, the mother of David
Fancher, retained the Foundation for
Moral Law to intervene in the case.
Although she had a loving relationship with
her son, she said she did not
want his name used to advance the cause of
same-sex marriage. In October
2014 Hard, Fancher, and the State of Alabama
each filed a motion for summary
judgment, which Judge Watkins put on hold until
the U.S. Supreme Court
decides the issue.

After the Supreme Court struck
down same-sex marriage laws, Hard asked the
District Court to rule on his
motion for summary judgment. But in a motion
filed yesterday, the Foundation
raised the question of whether the Supreme
Court’s same-sex marriage decision
is retroactive as to past relationships,
especially as to those which ended
years, not months ago.

Foundation Executive Director Matthew Kidd stated,
“The issue is not whether
someone may marry a member of the same sex today.
The issue is whether a
court may or should look back four years and recognize a
marriage that was
not legally valid. Of course, if the marriage is recognized
it will only
cause further economic harm to a family which has already lost one
its own.
And if recognized, this man will be awarded an entire spousal share of
the
wrongful death proceeds which would be unjust even under
normal
circumstances considering the two were ‘married’ less than 3 months.”

Foundation President Kayla Moore added, “It is outrageous that
five
unelected lawyers on the U.S. Supreme Court think they can invalidate
a
constitutional amendment adopted by 81% of Alabama voters in 2006, on
the
flimsy ground that violates a so-called ‘right’ found nowhere in
the
Constitution. It adds insult to injury to contend that this
so-called
‘right’ should be applied retroactively to matters that should have
been
settled long ago.”