American Foundation for Equal Rights

Mercury News editorial: Ban gay judges from hearing gay rights cases? Absurd!

“The idea that only heterosexuals are qualified to rule on the validity of Proposition 8 — California’s same-sex marriage ban — is absurd.

“What next? Should Latino judges be barred from immigration cases? Catholic judges from abortion issues? Women from domestic violence trials? Men from cases involving violent crimes when the suspects are young men — as they almost always are? And on and on.

“U.S. District Court Chief Judge James Ware on Monday will have to waste his time hearing arguments on whether Judge Vaughn Walker should have removed himself from the legal battle over Proposition 8 because he is gay. Walker did not divulge his sexual orientation before striking down the proposition, and its supporters say this presents a conflict of interest.”