'We thought we couldn't go any lower. We discovered actually we can'
Posted: October 03, 2008
12:40 am Eastern
By Bob Unruh
© 2009 WorldNetDaily
A man and woman have had to go to court in California because they want to be recognized as married after officials rejected their marriage license because it listed "bride" and "groom" instead of "Party A" and "Party B."
After the state Supreme Court in May expanded the rights enumerated in the state constitution and found same-sex couples couldn't be denied marriage rights, "Many thought we couldn't go any lower," said Brad Dacus of the Pacific Justice Institute, which is working on the case. "We discovered actually we can."
Gideon Codding and Rachel Bird recently were married in Placer County, near Sacramento. However, surprised by new marriage license forms created by state bureaucrats with "Party A" and "Party B," they jotted an explanatory "Groom" and "Bride' next to "party" designations.
The couple soon discovered the strength of the pro-homosexual lobby in the state: The application was returned to Pastor Doug Bird, who officiated, with a form letter stating the license "does not comply with California State registration laws."
The couple now is filing a lawsuit in Placer County asking the court to order county officials to process the license, since without the form's registration, "the Coddings are not legally married and have been prevented from accessing the many benefits available to married couples."
"Being labeled by the state as 'Party A' and 'Party B" is demeaning," said PJI Chief Counsel Kevin Snider. "It's shocking that we have to litigate over whether newlyweds can call themselves a bride and groom."
Said Dacus, "Already, we are seeing the negative effects of gay marriage in California, as the state is changing centuries-old traditions to accommodate homosexuals. Unless the Protect Marriage Initiative, Proposition 8, is approved in November, we expect a tidal wave of new restraints and limitations to be imposed on people of faith."
Dacus told WND the right for a one-man, one-woman couple to be married "was in no way invalidated by the state Supreme Court's ruling respecting homosexual marriage."
"This is an outright act of hostility towards the established rights of people to be married as husband and wife, bride and groom," he said.
"It's one thing for the state Supreme Court to cram homosexual marriage down the throats of people who voted for Proposition 22, it's quite another for the state of California then to go so far as to make it impossible for a man and woman to be married as husband and wife in the state of California," Dacus continued.
Bird, pastor of Abundant Life Fellowship in Roseville, said he was told by officials in the county office that "Bride" and "Groom" amounted to "unacceptable alteration" to the form.
"What's next?" Bird wrote in a Sept. 4 letter. "Will the State of California force [ministers] to use the terms "Party A" and "Party B" in the ceremony itself?"
The state Supreme Court in May, in a 4-3 decision, declared that legal definitions of marriage as a union between a man and a woman were unconstitutional. Since the ruling, the generic designations were added by bureaucrats to legal documents.
Voters several years ago under Proposition 22 approved limiting marriage to one man and one woman. But the measure was a statute, which the Supreme Court simple disregarded. The Proposition 8 proposal would establish the definition in the state constitution, putting it beyond the reach of judicial activism.