The California Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld same sex marriages that were already performed but upheld voters' rights to ban gay marriage through the state constitution.
The court surprised me by actually recognizing their role of not making law but interpreting it.
Chief Justice Ron George, writing the 6-1 decision, said the people have a right, through the ballot box, to change their constitution.
"In a sense, petitioners' and the attorney general's complaint is that it is just too easy to amend the California constitution through the initiative process. But it is not a proper function of this court to curtail that process; we are constitutionally bound to uphold it," the ruling said.
The court is the same one that last May ruled it unconstitutional to deny gay couples the right to marry. That led to the constitutional amendment offered on the ballot last November.
"After comparing this initiative measure to the many other constitutional changes that have been reviewed and evaluated in numerous prior decisions of this court, we conclude Proposition 8 constitutes a constitutional amendment rather than a constitutional revision," the ruling said.
Why didn't they come to this conclusion last year when they made new law by overruling the measure passed by the people of California of not allowing gay marriage? The 6-1 vote was surprisingly one-sided, too. Maybe they saw the backlash that rained down on them last time, and it was too much to put on themselves again. Could they have realized that we want judges to intpret not make law? I can only hope the this will begin a chain reaction of change away from judicial activism.