Last Friday, a New York state judge issued a temporary restraining order that barred the mayor of New Paltz from performing same-sex ?marriages.? In his order, Judge Vincent Bradley said that Mayor Jason West had ?[ignored] the oath of office that he took to uphold the law.?
On that same day, New York governor George Pataki promised that the state government was prepared to crack down on any local official that issued marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
While this is good news and a step in the right direction in New York , we still have a long way to go in opposing a campaign that undermines the rule of law. Across the country, lawlessness continues to break out. Local governments in California, Oregon, and New Mexico have pledged to continue what they call a campaign of ?civil disobedience.?
In evaluating their claim, the first thing we need to remember is that each of these municipalities and counties is a part of a larger political entity: the state. States like California contain communities with different cultural perspectives; people in Fresno, for instance, do not see the world the way people in L.A. or San Francisco do.