- (Photo: REUTERS/Jim Urquhart)
Trestin Meacham, the 35-year-old Utah man who went on a hunger strike to protest the state's passing of same-sex marriage, is eating again thanks to a stay issued by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Meacham explained on Twitter that he went on a hunger strike to protest the way in which the ruling legalizing gay marriage was made.
"I am against same sex marriage, but the reason for the fast was the unconstitutional nature of the ruling," he wrote.
He was not the only person upset over the ruling. Utah Gov. Gary Herbert insisted he did not agree with the court's ruling as well.
"I am very disappointed an activist federal judge is attempting to override the will of the people of Utah," Herbert said in a statement.
Meacham spent 15 days consuming bottled water and an occasional vitamin. He lost 26 pounds as a result of his hunger strike.
"You can start a blog and you can complain on social networks until you're blue in the face and nothing will happen but actions speak louder than words and I'm taking action," Meacham told KTVX.
On his blog, Meacham claimed that the state can exercise the option not to follow Judge Shelby's decision.
"I cannot stand by and do nothing while this evil takes root in my home," Meacham wrote in his manifesto. "Some things in life are worth sacrificing one's health and even life if necessary. I am but a man, and do not have the money and power to make any noticeable influence in our corrupt system. Nevertheless, I can do something that people in power cannot ignore."
The Supreme Court released a brief statement Monday saying it ruled to put the marriages on hold in order to "minimize the enormous disruption to the state and its citizens of potentially having to 'unwind' thousands of same-sex marriages." Same-sex couples in the state began marrying in late December after U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby overturned the state's 2004 ban on same-sex marriage. Since Shelby's ruling on Dec. 20, over 900 same-sex couples have married in Utah.
The high court's order will remain in effect as the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reviews Utah's challenge against Shelby's previous ruling. Shelby said in his ruling that the 2004 ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional because it violated the U.S. Constitution's 14th amendment rights to equal protection and due process.
The request for a stay was initially handed down by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who oversees appeals jurisdiction for Utah and surrounding states.
The Utah attorney general's office previously said it was appealing Shelby's ruling because the "federal district court's ruling that same-sex marriage is a fundamental right has never been established in any previous case in the 10th Circuit."