Michigan Judge Bernard Friedman ruled on Friday that the state ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional, sparking a flurry of same-sex marriages over the weekend.
That came to a halt after the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati issued a stay on Saturday. The court's intention was to give itself plenty of time to weigh the state's case against Friedman's decision.
Whether this pause is temporary is anyone's guess, but the federal appeals court expects that it will make a ruling on Wednesday.
It's possible the gay unions will stand or they may be retroactively banned.
Should the appeals court uphold the decision of Friedman, Michigan will join 17 states and the District of Colombia in the recognition of same-sex unions.
Some surprising locations to feature the striking down of gay marriage bans include Texas and Utah, areas of the country that are known for their rather socially conservative populations.
These are a couple of the states where federal courts have issued stays that have halted gay marriages. The appeals courts will keep the marriages on hold until a ruling is finally made for or against the unions.
It's very possible that a series of state decisions could be made over the next few months or years that would bring legalized gay marriages to half the United States.
This number would be a far cry from the limited availability of recognized same-sex unions about a decade ago.
Some are still wondering whether or not the U.S. Supreme Court will take the initiative at some point to declare state-issued bans on gay marriage constitutional or unconstitutional once and for all.
Gay weddings halted in Michigan after 300 marriage licenses issued http://t.co/Y1YMDWZgLi
— DAVID (@intenseCA) March 23, 2014
After Roe v. Wade and the legalization of abortion, it's reasonable to consider gay marriage the most controversial topic in all of the United States. One major reason why the Supreme Court continues to avoid directly dealing with the issue.
As for whether or not gay marriage bans will be lifted across the country, the decision will ultimately depend on the evolving views of the constituents of each state.
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