Michael J. McShane, United States District Judge, and a beautiful piece of prose

Jeffrey Kiok, a J.D. Candidate at Boston University School of Law, sent me a note. He drew my attention to the concluding part of Judge McShane’s opinion in the Oregon same-sex marriage case.  Jeffrey has my thanks.

The judge concludes his opinion this way:

My decision will not be the final word on this subject, but on this issue of marriage I am struck more by our similarities than our differences. I believe that if we can look for a moment past gender and sexuality, we can see in these plaintiffs nothing more or less than our own families. Families who we would expect our Constitution to protect, if not exalt, in equal measure. With discernment we see not shadows lurking in closets or the stereotypes of what was once believed; rather, we see families committed to the common purpose of love, devotion, and
service to the greater community.
Where will this all lead? I know that many suggest we are going down a slippery slope that will have no moral boundaries. To those who truly harbor such fears, I can only say this: Let us look less to the sky to see what might fall; rather, let us look to each other … and rise.

(Italics supplied by Kopf.)

What a stunning and beautiful piece of prose that obviously came from Judge McShane’s soul. I wish I could write like the judge.* Don’t we all.


*I express no opinion on the merits. A similar case could easily come before me.  If it did, some folks might be surprised by my views. Others would say I told you so. In any event, the expression of those views is premature.  I will wait until I have an actual case and controversy on this subject, if I ever do, to tell you what I really think.

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