Rob Holbert’s column “We can do without reinforcing stereotypes” (Feb. 19) completely misrepresented the state of play between Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore and the federal courts with regard to the same-sex marriage controversy.

Holbert writes that Moore’s edict to probate judges “was quickly slapped down by the feds.” Not even close. As a matter of fact, Judge Ginny Granade, the very judge who ruled in favor of the same-sex couples, wrote that “the preliminary injunction now in effect thus does not require the Clerk to issue licenses to other applicants,” nor did it apply to other clerks or probate judges across the state. 

But you need not believe me or Judge Granade or Chief Justice Moore, or any conservative activist. Writing in the uber-liberal New York Times, noted liberal judicial analyst Emily Bazelon devoted a whole column to explaining why, on procedural grounds, “Roy Moore is right that on its face, Granade’s order doesn’t require state probate judges all over Alabama — who weren’t named in the case Granade heard — to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.”

Our legal system guarantees certain procedures, not certain results. Whatever one thinks of Moore’s substantive goals, procedurally he was almost entirely on target.

Quin Hillyer,
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