2015年6月28日 星期日

從同性婚姻合法化看權利學說


美國最高法院裁定同性婚姻合法化,其判詞解釋法律隨社會而變。在20世紀後期,同性伴侶開始更公開地生活,並建立家庭。這種發展受到廣泛關注,令公眾更加寬容。如此一來,關於同性戀者的權利問題便帶進法庭。
In the late 20th century, following substantial cultural and political developments, same-sex couples began to lead more open and public lives and to establish families. This development was followed by a quite extensive discussion of the issue in both governmental and private sectors and by a shift in public attitudes toward greater tolerance. As a result, questions about the rights of gays and lesbians soon reached the courts, where the issue could be discussed in the formal discourse of the law.
事實上,新思維揭示,不合理和不平等可能長期隱藏在制度中不受注意和挑戰。
Indeed, recognizing that new insights and societal understandings can reveal unjustified inequality within fundamental institutions that once passed unnoticed and unchallenged.
法庭解釋憲法的義務是識別和保護這些基本權利。這一責任不應以簡單公式來敷衍。
The identification and protection of fundamental rights is an enduring part of the judicial duty to interpret the Constitution. That responsibility, however, “has not been reduced to any formula.”
第十四條修正案要求美國公民享有同樣的法律保障,而美國已有一些州允許同性婚姻。人們可以選擇在不同的州結婚,其他的州不能否認另一州的合法婚姻。
The Fourteenth Amendment requires States to recognize same-sex marriages validly performed out of State. Since same-sex couples may now exercise the fundamental right to marry in all States, there is no lawful basis for a State to refuse to recognize a lawful same-sex marriage performed in another State on the ground of its same-sex character.
第十四條修正案的“適當法律程序條款,指各法院未經“適當法律程序”,不得禠奪公民的權利,包括對其個人身份認同和信仰的選擇,在這過程中,個人尊嚴和自主權應當受到尊重。
The fundamental liberties protected by the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause extend to certain personal choices central to individual dignity and autonomy, including intimate choices defining personal identity and beliefs.
第十四條修訂案(第一款)
Section 1.
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
第一款:任何州,如未經適當法律程序,均不得拒絕給予其公民平等的法律保護。

事實上,今次判決的基石是維護婚姻制度。判詞的結尾為:「沒有任何聯繫是比婚姻更深刻,因為它體現了愛情,忠誠,奉獻,犧牲和家庭的最高理想。把同性婚姻的鼓吹者說成不尊重婚姻是錯誤的。他們尊重如此之深,也希望結婚 這一最古老的制度。他們要求在法律面前平等的尊嚴。憲法賦予他們的權利。因此上訴第六巡迴法院的判決被推翻。
No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right. The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.
It is so ordered.
判決的四項原則
四項原則對同性或異性婚姻同效。
Four principles and traditions demonstrate that the reasons marriage is fundamental under the Constitution apply with equal force to same-sex couples.
第一個原則是結婚關乎個人的選擇權利,它來源於個人自主。婚姻與自由之間的這種聯繫解釋了異族可以聯婚和愛情的意義。同道理,性取向是個人選擇。
The first premise of this Court’s relevant precedents is that the right to personal choice regarding marriage is inherent in the concept of individual autonomy. This abiding connection between marriage and liberty is why Loving invalidated inter racial marriage bans under the Due Process Clause. Decisions about marriage are among the most intimate that an individual can make. This is true for all persons, whatever their sexual orientation.
法院的判決的第二個原則是締造親密聯係是基本人權。此一原則體現在,已婚夫婦使用避孕措施的憲法權利。同性伴侶和異性伴侣同樣享有親密關係的權利。
A second principle in this Court’s jurisprudence is that the right to marry is fundamental because it supports a two-person union unlike any other in its importance to the committed individuals. The intimate association protected by this right was central to Griswold v Connecticut, which held the Constitution protects the right of married couples to use contraception, and was acknowledged in Turner, supra, at 95. Same-sex couples have the same right as opposite-sex couples to enjoy intimate association, a right extending beyond mere freedom from laws making same-sex intimacy a criminal offense.
第三個原則是保障兒童。結婚的權利同時包括生育,養育,教育的相關權利。非婚子女會受苦和受到標籤。他們的社會福利得不到保障。
這並不意味不準備生育的結婚的意義較少。一對夫妻有不生育的權利,所以結婚的權利不包括生育的承諾。
A third basis for protecting the right to marry is that it safeguards children and families and thus draws meaning from related rights of childrearing, procreation, and education. Without the recognition, stability, and predictability marriage offers, children suffer the stigma of knowing their families are somehow lesser. They also suffer the significant material costs of being raised by unmarried parents, relegated to a more difficult and uncertain family life. The marriage laws at issue thus harm and humiliate the children of same-sex couples. This does not mean that the right to marry is less meaningful for those who do not or cannot have children. Precedent protects the right of a married couple not to procreate, so the right to marry cannot be conditioned on the capacity or commitment to procreate.
最後,法院表明,婚姻是社會秩序的基石。國家已通過將法律將婚姻視為的社會及法律秩序的基本特徵。這與同性或異性的婚姻無關,因此排斥同性婚姻貶低了國家的這一基本制度的價值。同性伴侶同樣嚮往婚姻帶來的美滿關係。
Finally, this Court’s cases and the Nation’s traditions make clear that marriage is a keystone of the Nation’s social order. States have contributed to the fundamental character of marriage by placing it at the center of many facets of the legal and social order. There is no difference between same- and opposite-sex couples with respect to this principle, yet same-sex couples are denied the constellation of benefits that the States have linked to marriage and are consigned to an instability many opposite-sex couples would find intolerable. It is demeaning to lock same-sex couples out of a central institution of the Nation’s society, for they too may aspire to the transcendent purposes of marriage.
後記
美國最高法院的同性婚姻合法化在某種意義上,強化了美國核心價值 婚姻。光明社所持的反對理由,表現出其知識水平低,讀不懂判詞。美國最高法院表明,隨著同性伴侣在美國的普及和某些州已通過合法化,在第14條修正案下,它無法不進行裁決。
美國最高法院在判決時,觸及了香港終審法院審理w小姐案的一些法律觀點 「因為要生育的原因,所以擁有異性戀性交的能力,是婚姻中必不可少的元素」和常任法官陳兆愷頒發的異議判詞:「若本院援引這項權力的話,便相當於就社會議題訂立新政策,這會帶來長遠後果,必需經過公眾諮詢才能作出。這並非本院的職責。」
美國最高法院在判決的第三原則表示,「所以結婚的權利,不能與生兒育女的能力或承諾,扯在一起。----so the right to marry cannot be conditioned on the capacity or commitment to procreate.」美國最高法院也認為,在觸及一些憲法權利時,法庭不能以簡單程式處理,而有義務是識別這些基本權利,因為,它們很多時在傳統制度中被忽視。「unjustified inequality within fundamental institutions that once passed unnoticed and unchallenged. ----- That responsibility, however, “has not been reduced to any formula.”------
美國最高法院也解釋社會活動與法律的關係 ─  由於美國同性伴侣的活動公開法,改變了社會態度和最終迫使法院介入。

總的來說,今次判決清楚地表現了美國所崇尚的個人價值。無怪乎,奧巴馬在得知判決後說,「愛就是愛,這是美國的勝利。」以及,白宮以彩虹歡呼。