Wednesday's ruling that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional met with mixed reaction in the Lodi area.
Some say it's a great day for California.
Some express disappointment that a judge went against voters' wishes.
One person said that U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker had no choice constitutionally but to rule against Proposition 8, approved by voters in 2008. Proposition 8 states that marriage is legally defined as between one man and one woman.
And a constitutional professor said that the founding fathers who developed the U.S. Constitution were mostly lawyers who expected it to be subject to interpretation in future years.
Here are some reactions to Wednesday's Proposition 8 ruling:
Rachel Drake, of Lodi, who married her lesbian partner in 2008, when gay marriage was legal in California: "We're making progress. It's being allowed more and more. It shouldn't be an issue."
Bill Cummins, pastor, Bear Creek Community Church, Lodi: "The people of California passed Prop 8 overwhelmingly. A single judge undoes the votes of millions of Californians. The homosexual population in America is about seven percent. To their credit, they have been able to control a great deal of our culture through their perseverance.
"In all of recorded history, marriage has never been defined as between two homosexual people. This has nothing to do with civil rights, but everything to do with propagating a lifestyle that cannot propagate itself."
California Catholic Conference (released by Stockton Diocese): "We are disappointed in Judge Walker's decision to find Proposition 8, which defined marriage as between a man and a woman, a violation of the U.S. Constitution. Homosexuals certainly have every right to the love, companionship and support of another person, but the courts to not have a right to distort the meaning of marriage."
Brian Landsberg, constitutional law teacher, McGeorge School of Law, Sacramento: "Some provisions (of the Constitution) are specific, like the president must be 35 years old. But a lot of provisions are general that require interpretation. The people who wrote the Constitution were lawyers. They expected that the courts would interpret it.
"The U.S. Constitution is the oldest continuously applied constitution in the world because interpretation has been able to keep up to social conditions."
Steve Newman, pastor, First Baptist Church, Lodi: "I would guess that polygamists could make the same case that the populace cannot decide on the definition of marriage as being between two people. They could argue that their civil rights to determine this for themselves have been violated."
Richard Blackston, Lodi, San Joaquin County Democratic Central Committee: "The judge made the proper decision, because Proposition 8 is really a civil rights issue. How can you discriminate against a group of people? Constitutionally, he had no choice. That's the beauty of the American judicial system — we're fair and equal to all individuals."
Dale Edwards, pastor, Century Assembly, Lodi: "The question is not whether the Constitution will be amended concerning the meaning of marriage and the rights of homosexual people to marry; the question is simply how it will be amended. Will it be by the means established by the Constitution itself? Or will it be by the Supreme Court or any other court, creating a meaning for the Constitution which was never there in the authors' farthest imagination? I think it is a sad day for all of us."
Rabbi Raphael Pazo, Lodi: "Nobody has the right to tell anyone what they can do or not do. That creates a second-class citizen. It goes back to the commandment, 'Love thy neighbor.' "
Contact reporter Ross Farrow at firstname.lastname@example.org.