A quote referencing a Marilyn Monroe
film in connection with a gay marriage case has topped a legal
journal's roundup of best quotes.
Among the National
Law Journal's list of wittiest legal quotes of 2012 is one
from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in its ruling
overturning Proposition 8, California's gay marriage ban.
In its opinion the court cited the 1953
film How to Marry a Millionaire, which starred Marilyn Monroe,
Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall as three gold diggers. The film
inspired a television sitcom of the same name.
“Had Marilyn Monroe's film been
called How to Register a Domestic Partnership with a Millionaire,
it would not have conveyed the same meaning,” the justices wrote.
California currently recognizes gay and
lesbian couples with domestic partnerships.
The opinion also cited thoughts on
marriage from Abe Lincoln, Frank Sinatra and William Shakespeare.
“Groucho Marx's one-liner, 'Marriage
is a wonderful institution ... but who wants to live in an
institution?' would lack its punch if the word 'marriage' were
replaced with the alternative phrase. So too with Shakespeare's 'A
young man married is a man that's marr'd,' Lincoln's 'Marriage is
neither heaven nor hell, it is simply purgatory,' and Sinatra's 'A
man doesn't know what happiness is until he's married. By then it's