The Universal Right to Family Essay

1786 Words8 Pages
Although most Americans have particular positions on what constitutes the ideal family, it is vital for policy engage all members of society equally without regard to cultural, religious, or political factors. The idea that all Americans have the right to a family via substantive due process (which is slightly different than due process ) relies upon a judicial review process blind to appeals of pathos and responsive only to rational approaches. However, as noted by the Harvard Law Review, in reality, “substantive due process is at least partially culturally and politically driven” (2791). In recent years, the rights of gay families have come to the forefront of American cultural discourse as more gay families and individuals have demanded…show more content…
Although this concept directly contravenes the both Amendments 10 and 14 of the US Constitution, the Supreme Court has never directly addressed it partially because of the cultural volatility surrounding the debate on gay marriage. However, in their relaxed silence on DOMA, the Supreme Court tacitly condones hundreds of state statutes and state constitutional amendments that irreparably impair gay families everyday. For instance, DOMA curtails the right to adopt and the rights of gay adoptive parents even in states without express laws about universal adoption rights. Although most people would say the right to a family is fundamental, currently seven states have laws expressly banning gay adoption. Although states like Massachusetts and California have laws specifically protecting universal adoption rights, 25 states have vague laws that are also harmful under the purview of DOMA (“Human Rights Campaign”). According to legal scholar Mark Strasser, this vagueness represents a monumental issue when a same-sex family moves to a state that does not recognize adoption by non-married parents or when the biological children of one parent are adopted by the other parent (1818). The rights at stake in these cases are the right to sign hospital release forms for ones’ children in an emergency, the right to inherit property after death, the right to sign a school permission slip, and the right to custody and visitation in cases of two parents separating
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