70 Corporations Join Fight to Repeal DOMA

Commentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

Rather than sue the activist lawmakers and judges who imposed same-sex marriage in their states against the will of the people, Nike, Google and Starbucks are among 70 corporations, financial institutions, and medical centers that are joining a lawsuit calling for the repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) because of the “burdens” it places upon them.

According to The Seattle Times, these major employers are claiming that DOMA makes it difficult for them to promote diversity and equal opportunity in the workplace and imposes  substantial administrative burdens upon their organizations.

“Our enterprises are located in states, including the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, that recognize the marriages of our employees and colleagues to same-sex spouses,” the brief states. “At the same time, we are subject to the federal Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), which precludes federal recognition of these marriages.

“This dual regime uniquely burdens amici. It puts us, as employers and enterprises, to unnecessary cost and administrative complexity, and regardless of our business or professional judgment forces us to discriminate against a class of our lawfully-married employees, upon whose welfare and morale our own success in part depends.”

They claim that in order to attract the best employees, they must offer strong benefit packages and a “workplace ethos of transparent fairness,” they said. It also forces them to “investigate the gender of the spouses of our lawfully married employees and then to “single out” those who have a same-sex spouse.”

DOMA also burdens them with “the cost and administrative burden of ‘workarounds’ (employer-created benefit structures attempting to compensate for the discriminatory effects of DOMA),” the brief says, “or leave the married workforce in separate castes.”

The companies signing on to the brief also include, CBS, Time Warner Cable, Nike, Microsoft and the cities of Boston, Cambridge and New York. The brief was filed Thursday in the case of Commonwealth of Massachusetts vs. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which is one of two consolidated cases from Massachusetts challenging the constitutionality of DOMA.

While all of their arguments are good ones, none of these problems would even exist if activist judges and lawmakers had respected the law of the land rather than impose same-sex marriage against the will of their citizens. These officials should be held accountable for the consequences of the laws they imposed, not the general public who is already being forced to endure a variety of ills as a result, such as religious discrimination and school systems that are indoctrinating children into homosexuality against the will of their parents.

This kind of reckless political correctness comes at a price and it should be paid by the perpetrators, not at the expense of a federal law that is supported by an overwhelming majority of Americans.

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