An Open Letter to Mike DeWine, Attorney General of Ohio

TOLEDO, OH - OCTOBER 19: U.S. Sen. Mike DeWine (R - Ohio) smiles while looking at a T.V. camera before facing off October 19,
TOLEDO, OH - OCTOBER 19: U.S. Sen. Mike DeWine (R - Ohio) smiles while looking at a T.V. camera before facing off October 19, 2006, against challenger U.S. Rep. Sherrod Brown (D - Ohio) before a live Televised debate at the Stranahan Theater in Toledo, Ohio. (Photo by J.D. Pooley/Getty Images)

Dear Mr. DeWine,

As the attorney general of Ohio, you have a responsibility to "have general supervision of matters and actions in favor of the state and of those instituted by or against state officers wherein interests of the state are involved and may settle such matters and actions as the interests of the state require."

When I read the word "state," to me that means everyone in the state, not just the majority, and not just those who agree with your personal opinion, so please explain to me how it is in the interest of the state for you to defend Ohio's constitutional amendment that defines "marriage" as a union between one man and one woman. It's not. That is the simple truth. This amendment wasn't driven by a desire for justice, equality, or what's in the best interest of the state. It was driven by fear, intolerance, ignorance, hate, and religious belief. None of these reasons justifies denying rights to a group of citizens.

An individual's beliefs are choices; an individual's sexuality is not. This has been proven time and time again. Yes, no one can yet explain why anyone is homosexual, but denying rights just because you don't understand homosexuality or accept it is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court has ruled on it, and I'm sure that if we could ask the founding fathers, they would agree as well.

I don't agree with many religions, partly because I don't understand having blind faith, and partly because science has taught me otherwise. So does that mean that if I ran for office and were elected, I could deny rights to members of certain religions? No, it does not, because as an elected official, I would have a responsibility to represent not just the majority but the minority too. I also have a feeling that if an elected official did deny rights based on religious affiliation, the members of these religions would be the first to start trumpeting the separation of church and state. So why does that rationale not apply to the denial of rights based on sexual orientation?

To deny Jim Obergefll and his dying husband John Arthur recognition of their marriage is not just mean and plain wrong; it shows that you do not care about doing what is right, and that you do not care for all the citizens of Ohio. You just care about the ones who see the world like you do. That, Mr. DeWine, is not what this country was founded on, and it is definitely not what the Constitution of the United States stands for.

Please step up and do the right thing and refuse to defend this unconstitutional amendment in this case and in future cases. It is not in the best interest of the state of Ohio.

Tom Bartolomei