The Real DOMA Victory

Joshua Wartena, Opinions Editor, joshua.wartena@gmail.com

 

In midst of the jubilant cries and emotional facebook explosion Wednesday over the SCOTUS DOMA decision, I felt alone. People are either elated or worried about the ruling, and I can’t help but think there is a victory no one is talking about.

 

Yes, state-recognized gay couples now have their marriages recognized by the federal government. Yes, this will push the rest of the states to ratify same-sex marriage.

But ultimately, this wasn’t an issue about homosexual relationships. This was an issue over states’ rights versus the federal government, which is a far more important topic than homosexual marriage, regardless of what’s trending on twitter.

 

DOMA was struck down because it violated the Fifth Amendment, and it’s a great achievement that emphasizes an attitude we’ve lost: The local and state governments should be far more important than the federal government.

 

Saying the states’ decisions, in this case same-sex marriage, should be upheld in Washington is hearkening back to the idea that we the people and communities should actively take control and make decisions on smaller levels instead of waiting for an all-powerful entity to determine out fates. We are the government, not the old millionaires sitting on the East Coast

 

I’m glad DOMA was struck down and couples will have access to benefits. That’s great. But I’m more pleased to see an echo of what should be: a government by and for the people.

Joshua Wartena is a senior studying Journalism and Spanish at UVU and will graduate in Fall 2014. He is hoping to work as a middle-east correspondent or long-form magazine writer in South America. Josh is currently living in Orem and is the Opinions Section Editor

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