Arkansas Supreme Court Puts Marriage Equality on Hold

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
May 17 2014 1:06 PM

Arkansas Supreme Court Puts Marriage Equality on Hold

480044185-roland-smith-puts-a-ring-on-the-finger-of-paul-mattson
Roland Smith (L) puts a ring on the finger of Paul Mattson (R) as the same-sex couple get married at the Oakland County Courthouse on March 22, 2014 in Pontiac, Michigan

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

A week of marriage equality in Arkansas came to an end late Friday, when the state Supreme Court ordered a halt to the same-sex nuptials. The decision by the state’s highest court suspended a judge’s decision that had declared the state’s marriage ban unconstitutional and gave way to a week of wedding fervor in the state. More than 540 same-sex couples received marriage licenses over the last week, according to the Associated Press. The high number is particularly surprising when you consider that 69 of the 75 county clerks refused to issue marriage licenses after the initial ruling had created doubts about the status of marriage equality in the state.

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel, who supports marriage equality but has said he will defend the state’s laws, was the one who had called for an emergency stay “in order to avoid confusion and uncertainty.” Arkansas has now officially become the sixth state where a ruling that declared it was unconstitutional to forbid marriage equality has been put on hold during the appeal process, notes Bloomberg. So far, 17 states and the District of Columbia have legalized gay marriage.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore, and Schools Are Getting Worried

The Good Wife Is Cynical, Thrilling, and Grown-Up. It’s Also TV’s Best Drama.

  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 19 2014 9:15 PM Chris Christie, Better Than Ever
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 19 2014 6:35 PM Pabst Blue Ribbon is Being Sold to the Russians, Was So Over Anyway
  Life
Atlas Obscura
Sept. 19 2014 1:10 PM Ascension Island: Home of Lava Fields, a False Forest, and the World's Worst Golf Course
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 3:07 PM Everything Is a "Women's Issue"
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 19 2014 4:48 PM You Should Be Listening to Sbtrkt
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 5:03 PM White House Chief Information Officer Will Run U.S. Ebola Response
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 19 2014 5:09 PM Did America Get Fat by Drinking Diet Soda?   A high-profile study points the finger at artificial sweeteners.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.