Patterico's Pontifications

11/30/2008

Gay is the New Black

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 3:45 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The AP reports that some view Obama’s election as proof the black civil rights struggle is over and believe now it’s time for the focus to be on gay rights:

“The gay rights movement entered a new era when Barack Obama was elected the first black president the same day that voters in California and Florida passed referendums to prevent gays and lesbians from marrying, while Arizonans turned down civil unions and Arkansans said no to adoptions by same-sex couples.

Racism was defanged by Obama’s triumph, leaving gays as perhaps the last group of Americans claiming that their basic rights are being systematically denied.”

It would help gays to have black support but I doubt that will happen since few blacks support same-sex marriage and it’s unclear how many agree their civil rights struggle is over.

An Obama win coupled with the loss of these initiatives must make gays feel like they took one step forward and two steps back … but I don’t see any evidence that Obama will be a strong advocate for same-sex marriage. It sounds like the formula for an unhappy partnership.

— DRJ

172 Responses to “Gay is the New Black”

  1. Based on their infantile actions since their defeat in CA, I don’t think the worm will be turning anytime soon in their favor. The idea is to persuade, not stamp your little feet and screech and call others names – they’re only furthering some very unfortunate stereotypes with those behaviors.

    Dmac (e30284)

  2. Well, if gay is the new black, at least people will be dressing better. (Ducking and running for cover)

    The Dana in hiding (556f76)

  3. Hmmm…then we’re sure to see a new version of “Porgy & Bess” – “Jordy & Jess” perhaps?

    Ducking and running with Dana

    Horatio (55069c)

  4. Gay guys will stop driving Mini Coopers and start driving Chrysler 300s?

    nk (5fa892)

  5. Gay guys will abandon the Cubs and become White Sox fans?

    nk (5fa892)

  6. Gay guys will stop driving Mini Coopers and start driving Chrysler 300s?

    “Pink Escalades”, he said from his hiding place

    Horatio (55069c)

  7. Brie and Chardonay is out, pork rinds and malt liquor is in?

    nk (5fa892)

  8. Gay guys will stop driving Mini Coopers and start driving Chrysler 300s?

    Yup, and they’ll also drink beer and watch NASCAR races.

    Paul (creator of "Staunch Brayer") (b63e53)

  9. … malt liquor is in

    Where is Billy Dee Williams? Isn’t he gay?

    Horatio (55069c)

  10. Hey, since I’m both gay AND balck I’m more fashionable thant ever! Right Dmac? Stop stamping your little feet dear. It isn’t becoming.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  11. Horatio, the list of important gay African-Americans is a long one. I suggest you read up on Bayard Rustin — the man who created the March on Washington. I do hope you’ve heard of James Baldwin. And Billy Strayhorn wrote “Lush Life” when he was still a teenager. Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston were also gay. In fact the entire “Harlem Renaissance” was a gay/lesbian movement.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  12. a fortiori
    Take a look at this!

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  13. Hmmm…then we’re sure to see a new version of “Porgy & Bess”

    Horatio – Judy Garland wasn’t in Porgy and Bess.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  14. I’ve clearly misjudged the interests of my audience.

    DRJ (a50047)

  15. I can promise you that the black community in no way shape or form views their struggle from slavery to equality in America as parallel to the gay rights movement.

    The pass liberals are giving Obama on this issue
    is astonishing to say the least:

    HOPEFULS DIFFER AS THEY DEBATE GAY MARRIAGE
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/01/us/politics/01marriage.html?em
    By PATRICK HEALY
    Published: October 31, 2008

    Several gay friends and wealthy gay donors to Senator Barack Obama have asked him over the years why, as a matter of logic and fairness, he opposes same-sex marriage even though he has condemned old miscegenation laws that would have barred his black father from marrying his white mother.


    The difference, Mr. Obama has told them, is religion.

    As a Christian — he is a member of the United Church of Christ — Mr. Obama believes that marriage is a sacred union, a blessing from God, and one that is intended for a man and a woman exclusively, according to these supporters and Obama campaign advisers. While he does not favor laws that ban same-sex marriage, and has said he is “open to the possibility” that his views may be “misguided,” he does not support it and is not inclined to fight for it, his advisers say.

    Bush was labeled a right wing Christian bigot trying to impose his fundamentalist views down our
    throats in his quest to turn America into a theocracy when he mentioned his faith as a guideline.

    Here we have the liberal messiah condemning gay marriage based on his religious beliefs,large percentages of blacks and Latinos voting against gay marriage and who do the liberals attack.
    The Mormons.
    Yea,they brought the money in but that doesn’t always translate into votes.

    There are no protests at the mosques.
    There are no protests at black churches.
    There are no protests at latino churches.
    There are no protests condemning Obama as a
    homophobic bigot and I am sure his inauguration
    will be free of gay rights protesters also.

    The rights of the people to vote and have their voice respected only means something to liberals when it coincides with their ideology.
    If not then you are an ignorant bigot who used voter fraud to push an oppressive agenda and they will have to use there superior intellect and moral judgment to right this wrong.

    I personally would like to see peoples sexual orientation become less of an issue in politics.
    What people do in their bedrooms should be their business and as long as we don’t try to shove it in each other’s face or in my kids face in a classroom,we should be fine.Straight or Gay.
    I don’t think we should change the tradition of marriage and civil unions provide the same rights as marriage.Lets move on.
    Trying to compare this to the incredible struggle
    that the black community has endured in achieving
    equal rights in this country is a slap in the face
    to the King’s,Malcom’s,Robinson’s and thousands of people who helped make America a better place to live.

    Baxter Greene (8035ae)

  16. DRJ, the title of the post made me giggle.

    Dana (79a78b)

  17. you have an audience?

    /white smoke

    redc1c4 (27fd3e)

  18. Bed Bath And Beyond will declare bankruptcy and be taken over by Wal-Mart.

    nk (5fa892)

  19. redc1c4,

    I actually thought before I said that because it does sound presumptuous. Now I wish I had thought twice!

    DRJ (a50047)

  20. Some guy two inches taller than me said:

    Bed Bath And Beyond will declare bankruptcy and be taken over by Wal-Mart.

    Well, that could happen anyway!

    The Dana two inches shorter than NK (556f76)

  21. I am expecting someone to step in and denounce us all. Therefore, to save time, I denounce myself!

    The denounced Dana (556f76)

  22. Horatio – Judy Garland wasn’t in Porgy and Bess

    True, but it was a musical

    Horatio (55069c)

  23. Paul wrote:

    Yup, and they’ll also drink beer and watch NASCAR races.

    NASCAR is the sport for us rednecked white guys, the ones who cling to bitterness and church and guns.

    Please make a note of it.

    The redneck Dana (556f76)

  24. redc1c4 said:

    White smoke.

    Congratulations on your election to the papacy, DRJ.

    The Catholic Dana (556f76)

  25. Please make a note of it.

    My Beer-n-NASCAR comment is usually referred to as “Over-the-Top Absurd Sarcasm.”

    Paul (creator of "Staunch Brayer") (b63e53)

  26. Bed Bath And Beyond will declare bankruptcy and be taken over by Wal-Mart.

    This explains why Linens & Things is going out of business…

    pork rinds and malt liquor is in?

    Don’t you mean fried chicken and 40’s? :)

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  27. More post-election Prop-8 hissy-fit

    Now, when will they start posting personal data of No-on-Prop-8 supporters?
    Will we have roaming bands of brigands attacking and burning the homes and businesses of their political opponents?
    That always worked well, historically.

    Another Drew (bb6514)

  28. leaving gays as perhaps the last group of Americans claiming that their basic rights are being systematically denied.

    Claiming this is a civil rights issue is what I think is making blacks laugh at white gays.

    Blacks were denied the right to vote, the right to sit in any seat on the bus of their choice and in restaurants. Things gays have never seen or witnessed and calling this the new black has to be really offensive to blacks that suffered “real” persecution at the hands of white America.

    When reflecting upon the Tuskegee Airmen, these men who did an incredible job for their own country despite being regulated to second class citizens by that very same country. Now that is real honor and real integrity and real moral uprightness. These men had every reason in world not to partake and help racist America out, yet they did!!!

    Gay marriage rights and black civil rights, not even in the same universe.

    ML (14488c)

  29. David E.,

    I’ve learned that some days of the week are better suited to a serious discussion than others. Sunday isn’t one of those days and the Sunday after a holiday is even less so.

    DRJ (a50047)

  30. And I guess that the ladies will just have to wait.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  31. ML: gay people have suffered real persecution, too, although it’s mostly decades in the past. The state of California tried to prohibit gay people from being teachers, for example. Almost all gays older than 40 had close friends who were disowned by their families for being gay; almost all gays of the same age know people who were brutally beaten for being gay; gay people in much of the country have been subject to employment and housing discrimination until fairly recent times.

    This has receded; in most places there’s now a live and let live attitude at the official level. But even then … I’ve been called names by random passers by for walking down the street with my husband in Santa Cruz. There are parts of the country where I would be afraid to hold my husband’s hand in public, and employment discrimination still exists.

    None of this is about marriage; marriage is a seperate issue. But to claim that gays have never seen or witnessed real discrimination is to ignore the way gays have been treated in most places until fairly recently.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  32. DRJ: I expect no national level politician to be a strong advocate for gay marriage for at least a decade. This shouldn’t be a national issue yet; there’s no way that it can be won on a national level until it’s been won legislatively on the state level in multiple states.

    I do expect national level politicians to oppose a federal amendment banning same sex marriage and to change the UCMJ to no longer prohibit homosexual sex. I think Obama will deliver on both of those. And he might even appoint judges who will interpret the full faith and credit clause to require states that don’t themselves have same-sex marriages to recognize out of state ones.

    But anything else isn’t gonna fly at this time, and while I do think the gay community could benefit from better political leadership, that leadership has to succeed at the state and local level before the battle can be fought nationally.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  33. Baxter: I had no problem with President Bush’s stance on the issue of gay marriage until he tried to write a ban into the federal Constitution.

    I have no problem with former Sen. Obama’s stance on the issue of gay marriage right now, and see no evidence that he’s going to try to write a ban into the federal Constitution.

    If that changes, I will complain.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  34. “…change the UCMJ…”

    Has to be done by Congress, and it could be a very tough fight, even with the enhanced majorities the Dems have.

    Another Drew (bb6514)

  35. aphrael–

    Note that Bush said nothing about an Amendment until the Massachusetts decision, which itself was a back-door amendment.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  36. which itself was a back-door amendment.

    No pun intended…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  37. Well I try my best, DRJ.

    To put it simply gay marriage is a bell that cannot be unrung.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  38. Another Drew: it does have to be done by Congress. But this is now something with roughly 75-80% popular support, according to recent polls; I don’t think it will be a problem to get it through Congress.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  39. Prop 6 would not only have fired gay teachers aphrael. It would have fired anyone who came to the defense of gay teachers. This is all explained in Milk — which I hope everyone in here will see.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  40. Kevin: as someone who has favored gay marriage as a policy matter since I was 16, I can’t really say that it matters to me why President Bush supported a federal constitutional amendment to ban it. It’s not something I want in the Constitution, and support for it is something I have a very difficult time overlooking when deciding who to vote for.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  41. Aphrael: just out of curiosity, why do you care whether any President does or doesn’t want to write anything into/out of the Constitution? It’s not as though the President plays any role in that process, anyway.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  42. aphrael #30:

    Building leaders from the state and local level is a good formula for any political success. I hope conservatives try it.

    DRJ (a50047)

  43. Where discrimination against homosexuals differs from discrimination against blacks is that the former is based on the view that homosexual acts are immoral acts done at the choice of the homosexual. And, since marriage is based on the union of male and female for the purpose of raising a family, a homosexual marriage is on its face an absurdity that is impossible to exist, whatever legal documents may say. Therefore a homosexual who is barred from marriage suffers no discrimination because the homosexual is not being prohibited from doiong anything that nature does not keep him/her from doing in the first place.
    Discrimination against blacks was based on the idea that blacks were inferior, period.
    For gays to compare themselves to blacks on this is to do disservice to both groups, because it fails to adequately state the reason why each group suffers discrimination.

    kishnevi (03a14b)

  44. #35 aphrael:

    I don’t think it will be a problem to get it through Congress.

    aphrael, the UCMJ is a very special piece of legislation, in that it doesn’t affect the general population of the US. Its aim is at regulating conduct of soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines. This is a group of people that generally are more conservative than the general population of the country~so I think it likely that there will be considerable resistance to special accomodations in the UCMJ (that wouldn’t, in fact, meet that resistance in civil legislation).

    EW1(SG) (e27928)

  45. where I would be afraid to hold my husband’s hand in public,

    Maybe you should call him your “wife” and no one will notice.

    And I’ve sometimes wondered if a gay can be a lesbian. Or can a lesbian also be gay? Or is a gay lesbian, and a lesbian gay?

    And where do all the bisexuals fit in? Should they be allowed to have both a husband and wife?

    Mark (411533)

  46. When reflecting upon the Tuskegee Airmen

    I was just reflecting on the Tuskegee seamen…

    Ooops, sorry.

    I denounce myself. I got carried away with aphrael’s

    But this is now something with roughly 75-80% popular support, according to recent polls; I don’t think it will be a problem to get it through Congress.

    Comment by aphrael

    That 75 to 80 % popular support must be why Prop 8 was so handily defeated in California. Oh.

    I’m sorry again. I just get silly when I see gays pontificating about how their troubles are just like the black’s battle for civil rights.

    Mike K (6c3bc7)

  47. since few blacks support same-sex marriage

    High percentages of people in the black and gay community are of pro-Democrat-Party persuasion, as much as they’re either a race (ie, African-American) or sexual orientation (homosexual). So it’s refreshing that when it comes to at least one socio-cultural issue, the two camps aren’t quite as monolithic or stereotypically liberal.

    However, I’m sure Obama would love it if same-sex marriage became even more of a cause-celebe issue, above and beyond where it already is, thereby allowing him to be “forced” into rallying around and embracing it.

    Mark (411533)

  48. #29 Comment by aphrael — 11/30/2008 @ 5:50 pm

    I was not saying gays have not be discriminated against, I am saying it is not on par with what blacks suffered, not even close.

    ML (14488c)

  49. Mike K: the polls for Prop 8 ranged between 55% against to about 55% in favor; the outcome wasn’t that far off of the polls.

    Public polling has shown 75-80% support for the abolition of DADT (which implies repealing the sodomy rules in the UCMJ) consistently for several years.

    They’re hardly comparable issues in terms of public support.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  50. EW(1)SG: of course the UCMJ is a special piece of legislation applying only to service people. That said, nobody is pushing for special accomodations, just a change in the rules to allow gay soldiers to serve openly. The public has been polled regularly and the opposition which was there sixteen years ago is much reduced. And it’s not like it would be a surprise; every single Democratic candidate endorsed such a change during the primary debates.

    Whether the military leadership opposes such a move depends on how it is handled by former Senator Obama and Representative Pelosi; certainly they could do it in a way that leaves the military feeling not listened to. But even within the military, opposition is fading, and such a change could be made in a way which wouldn’t trigger widespread outrage within it.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  51. Mike K, since you are neither black nor gay would it be terribly rude to suggest that you have no idea what you’re talking about?

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  52. You assumptions about the purpose of marriage are not well-founded kishnevi.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  53. As soon as you give the Democrats their gay president they’ll be agitating for their President boy lover and President sheep fucker.

    jcurtis (524ed8)

  54. As soon as you give the Democrats their gay president they’ll be agitating for their President boy lover and President sheep fucker.

    You know, depending on what Liberal blog you’re reading, they could already have those in Bush… :)

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  55. One can understand why Gays might feel that their plight was in some degree similar to that of African-Americans; after all, I don’t think that being actively Black was ever actually illegal (maybe in some parts of Mississippi). I think that the Gays will find that that is a hard sell to Blacks, however.

    I think that Gays are going to have spotty results in trying to gain acceptance until they realize that, regardless of sexual orientation, any man who dresses and acts the way far too many members of the Gay community dress and act at Gay Pride events is a jerk. Parade about in public in bondage gear, and no sane person will hire you as a teacher – homosexual or heterosexual, it doesn’t matter. And the Gay movement is allowing itself to be defined by a few idiots who have no better sense than that – or no better sense than to appear in public wearing little more than body paint.

    Yes, some football fans do that too. The general consensus is that they are twerps also.

    General acceptance of Gays is going to stall until the organizers of Gay Pride events learn to tell the inevitable twit wearing a dog collar and exposed nipple rings to put on a shirt and tie or get locked in the trunk of somebody’s car until it’s time to go home.

    C. S. P. Schofield (2f879a)

  56. Baxter: I had no problem with President Bush’s stance on the issue of gay marriage until he tried to write a ban into the federal Constitution.
    #

    Comment by aphrael — 11/30/2008 @ 5:54 pm

    I believe changing the Constitution or amending it should be a measure reserved for extremely rare
    and serious national issues.
    I don’t think gay marriage falls into this category.I like the idea of leaving it up to the states to make these decisions.
    So when the people vote,they have spoken.
    Harassing,vandalizing,and threatening people who
    did not vote the way you wanted them to is in itself hateful,idiotic,and bigoted behavior.
    I respect your viewpoint,but unfortunately the gay community does not mirror your sane and diplomatic attitude.
    This is my point with Obama and his liberal base.They have plenty of hatred and bigotry for
    religious and conservative people while showing nothing but love and admiration for their elected leader who shares the same views.
    How can you possibly take these people and their
    “cause” seriously?
    I,like many Americans,have a right not to agree with the gay lifestyle.I am neither a bigot or a homophobe because of my beliefs.
    This does not give me the right to discriminate
    or ostracize someone due to their sexual orientation which is all together a different issue.

    But when I watch the Prop. 8 protest and the hateful idiocy displayed over and over combined with many gay events detailed on sites like this:

    The Folsom street fair

    http://www.zombietime.com/folsom_sf_2007_part_1/

    I will be damned if I am going to be judged and told I am some kind of “right wing bigot” because
    I don’t agree with this lifestyle and behavior while they give the Obama’s and muslims a big “it’s okay”.

    Baxter Greene (8035ae)

  57. The Folsom street fair

    I think there’s a reason — and a legitimate one at that — for so-called “homophobia,” which I believe a lot of people do feel or express, certainly deepdown. And that includes even more than a handful of liberals, certainly if they’re being honest with themselves.

    However, I’ll say that most of my homophobia (or “homophobia”) stems from the nonsensical ideology emanating from a huge number of gays. Then again, if 80% of homosexuals were conservative to truly moderate instead of liberal (and certainly libertine), they wouldn’t be so good at playing the woe-is-me martyr when it comes to issues like HIV/AIDS and same-sex marriage.

    Mark (411533)

  58. Gay is not the new black – it’s the old immorality and rebellion.
    Nowhere in my Bible, and believe me i have looked, nowhere does it say that having a dark skin is an abomination (OT) or a sin (NT). Homosexuality however, is.
    I dont believe homosexuals should be discriminated against, neither do I believe they should be extended special rights based on their behavior. What special rights? Marriage. Why? Because it’s just plain wrong. Two male homosexuals or two lesbians cannot reproduce after their own kind without introducing the opposite sex into the equation. Of course, on the other hand, a gay guy can marry a lesbian, no problem. That would solve their marriage problem and keep everybody happy.

    Alpha-Omega (ee3539)

  59. When LGBTs claim they are the new black they INSULT AFRICANS! Disgusting! There is a whole continent here who take great exception to that! Shame on them! Let them fight their battles but leave us out of it.

    Asaba in Uganda

    PS George W. Bush is one of the greatest presidents you have ever had! God Bless him.

    Asaba (644daa)

  60. …on its face an absurdity that is impossible to exist, whatever legal documents may say.

    Like the pregnant man.

    Dude, if you weren’t born with a penis and you’re currently spitting babies out, you are not a man. Period.

    Pablo (99243e)

  61. Hey, since I’m both gay AND balck I’m more fashionable thant ever! Right Dmac? Stop stamping your little feet dear. It isn’t becoming.

    Comment by David Ehrenstein — 11/30/2008 @ 4:33 pm

    That’s a very impressive lack of awareness you’ve got there, Dave.

    Pablo (99243e)

  62. I’m impressed that you’re impressed, Pablo.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  63. Gay is not the new black – it’s the old immorality and rebellion.
    Nowhere in my Bible, and believe me i have looked, nowhere does it say that having a dark skin is an abomination (OT) or a sin (NT). Homosexuality however, is.
    I dont believe homosexuals should be discriminated against, neither do I believe they should be extended special rights based on their behavior. What special rights? Marriage. Why? Because it’s just plain wrong. Two male homosexuals or two lesbians cannot reproduce after their own kind without introducing the opposite sex into the equation. Of course, on the other hand, a gay guy can marry a lesbian, no problem. That would solve their marriage problem and keep everybody happy.

    Comment by Alpha-Omega — 12/1/2008 @ 5:01 am

    Wow, man, just… wow. You’ve solved the problem. Have gays marry lesbians! Brilliant!

    Can you solve the economic crisis while you’re at it? How about have gay men pay a special tax? Or, have lesbians work over time for free to shore up the economy? Keep them ideas comin’, brother.

    truthnjustice (3d65f9)

  64. This topic always seems to bring out the worse in many people. But behind it, I see something that is troubling: the concept that a person cannot comment on a subject unless they themselves are intimately involved with it.

    I see the point, but I generally find that people who believe in that principle have utterly no problem pontificating on subjects far, far outside their own experience and expertise.

    So perhaps we should choose: everyone gets to comment on all topics, or we should only comment if we have experience in the area under discussion. It is intellectually dishonest to change the rules when it suits the commenter.

    Eric Blair (8f93a0)

  65. “This topic always seems to bring out the worse in many people. But behind it, I see something that is troubling: the concept that a person cannot comment on a subject unless they themselves are intimately involved with it.”

    It comes down to that Eric since gays and lesbians are always being told who we are, by those who seek to destroy us — be they the church, psychiatry or the RNC.

    It’s so tiresome I find myself invariable reaching for the “Shut the fuck up!!!!” — which isn’t an argument at all of course, but at least clears the air.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  66. 63 Asaba-
    Indeed, quite amusing how some places in world think that Dubya is an allright guy, an emancipator. Of course the cheese-eating surrender monkeys, along with most of the other Euroweenies disagree. But is it not rather amusing that the Japanese are quite aware of Obama’s history of malevolent associations and actually take umbrage? You don’t hear much about it over here. Yes, I know some will say Japanese are most racist society in the world and are disrespecting the black boy, even if the black boy is more white and arabic than black. But the issue is all those tainted/nefarious deals with the chitown low income housing and the millions spent who knows where during O!s Annenberg Challenge days.
    So the expert here is gay, black and Jewish and I suppose see himself much in the light of the Magic Joo Chomsky, or is it Chumpsky?

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  67. Actually my father ws Jewish. I raised raised as a Roman Catholic, but left the church before the priests could unzip me.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  68. And there’s no place like Noam.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  69. That’s a very impressive lack of awareness you’ve got there, Dave.

    It’s been established over the past few years that Davey’s pretty much a one – note Angry Queen on anything regarding teh Gay. Venting his considerable spleen and bile is the only thing that piques his interest these days.

    Dmac (e30284)

  70. Since I’m neither gay nor black, I suppose I should just sit in the back of the bus and shut the hell up.

    Nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I think I’ll go eat worms.

    I'm Geekier (635720)

  71. Venting his considerable spleen and bile is the only thing that piques his interest these days.

    Or stomping his little feet, you might say. 😉

    Pablo (99243e)

  72. No, YOU might say…

    Don’t you try and pawn off your horribleness on us, buddy… :)

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  73. XRLQ: you’re right that the President isn’t involved in the legal process of altering the Constitution. But he is the highest ranked officer of the land, and much of the job lies in the successful use of the “bully pulpit” to persuade people.

    So why does it matter to me if the President is advocating putting something in the Constitution which I believe doesn’t belong there? Because he’s using the persuasive power of the office to convince people to make a change to the system of government. He doesn’t have the power or authority to do it on his own; but the respect people accord the office means the idea is taken more seriously than it was before, just because he’s propounding it.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  74. Mark: I’m a pretty moderate gay person. I’ve never been to the Folsom Street Faire despite living in the bay area, for example. :)

    And yet at the same time, my immediate reaction to Proposition 8 passing was to be outraged that the state constitution now requires that the state treat my relationship to the person I love differently than it treats my best friend’s relationship to the person he loves.

    So I’m not convinced that being moderate or conservative would make gay people less outraged by the lack of same sex marriage.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  75. Aphrael

    You do know that California has domestic partnerships, so gay couples do have the very same rights a heterosexual couples.

    ML (14488c)

  76. So I’m not convinced that being moderate or conservative would make gay people less outraged by the lack of same sex marriage.

    This is a fair point, and I admit to being very conflicted myself over the issue (my religiosity and upbringing vs. my libertarian mindset), but you have to admit that at least part of the problem is the “utterly flaming” segment of your side of the sexual coin.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  77. ML: there are a handful of differences in the way DPs are handled than the way marriages are handled.

    But even if they weren’t: one of them is now written into the constitution and the other one isn’t. Looking just at the state constitution, I am treated differently. The fact that the legislature has done its best to remedy that is good; but it’s just as offensive to me as the unenforceable remnant anti-miscegenation clauses still in certain state constitutions.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  78. Same sex couples DO NOT have the same rights as heterosexual couples via domestic partnership, as the California State Supreme Court made clear in their ruling in May.

    I suggest you read it, ML.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  79. Mike K, since you are neither black nor gay would it be terribly rude to suggest that you have no idea what you’re talking about?

    Yeah, MikeK, you … you … Chicken-albino-poof !!!

    If you want to comment on this, why don’t you sign up to be gay and black instead of sitting in your armchair while our brave gay and black children fight on the front lines in this pre-emptive (possibly illegal) culture war of aggression.

    Uncle Pinky (834163)

  80. Aphrael

    A polygamist reading the state constitution is thinking the very same thing, so where do we draw the line or do we just leave it where it has already been drawn?

    ML (14488c)

  81. ML: that’s a slightly odd question to ask less than one month after the constitution was changed. This is California; we change the constitution at a drop of a hat … so why should the rules be changed over this issue?

    I mean, I’m open to an argument which says that we change the Constitution too easily in this state, and that the ease with which that happens is responsible for a big part of our legislative gridlock and budgetary instability, and that we should change that. But I’m *very resistant* to the idea that the passage of Proposition 8 means that we should change the rules so as to make it harder to undo it.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  82. funny blurb on the front page of today’s Daily News:

    “Is Gay the new Black?”

    http://tinyurl.com/6h88t3

    coincidence?

    redc1c4 (27fd3e)

  83. Aphrael

    Sorry I get a little confused, I was under the false impression that Prop 22 changed the state constitution not just the family code.

    ML (14488c)

  84. If Aphrael is unhappy now, how will we be able to describe his feelings when Shariah is imposed?

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  85. Looking just at the state constitution, I am treated differently.

    Aphrael, you are not treated differently. Your relationship is treated differently, which is not the same thing. And it’s treated differently because it is different.

    Pablo (99243e)

  86. Apparently Aphrael is not his relationship. And neother is mine with the man who I have shared my life with for the past 37 years.

    Are you married to a woman Pablo? Who is she to you? Nothing?

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  87. “Marriages of convenience” when it comes to politics rarely last once one side gets what they want. Go back 40 years to when the civil rights advocates bonded with the supporters of the anti-war movement to give LBJ and then Nixon such a hard time in the 1960s. Once Nixon got rid of the draft and created an all-volunteer military, the radical leaders of the anti-war movement still hung tight with Dr. King’s successors, but their young followers evaporated, because the draft threat was gone.

    The same thing applies here, only in this case, it’s the election of Obama that may give the majority of African-Americans what they want and end whatever alliance there is between civil rights and gay rights groups, even if the leadership tries to maintain the image of solidarity.

    John (692c5c)

  88. That’s the worst case scenario, John. I’m hoping it doesn’t turn out that way. The anti-prop 8 demos have been attended by a large and diverse group of people — primarily young. There’s a “generational” element to all of this that I believe trumps everything.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  89. Another Drew: I think the notion that Sharia law might be imposed in the US is a bizarre fantasy.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  90. mean, I’m open to an argument which says that we change the Constitution too easily in this state, and that the ease with which that happens is responsible for a big part of our legislative gridlock and budgetary instability, and that we should change that. But I’m *very resistant* to the idea that the passage of Proposition 8 means that we should change the rules so as to make it harder to undo it.

    If you think it’s too easy to change the Constitution of the state, then the intellectually honest thing to do would be to make it tougher. But it wouldn’t be honest to say, “We can’t make it tougher yet because something I don’t like is on the books.”

    Steverino (69d941)

  91. Steverino: I understand your point, and I’d note that I’m not doing that. I’m saying that I’m open to the argument “it’s too easy to change the constitution and we should fix that” in general, but that i’m not open to the argument “now that gay marriage is banned in the constitution, we should make it harder to change the constitution”.

    I’m actually deeply torn on the subject and have been for a number of years. On the one hand, I think the initiative system is a powerful tool that the people can use to check the abuse of power by politicians and by people who are able to buy their own pet politicians; it is something I don’t want tampered with. (I am, for example, entirely opposed to the argument that Prop 8 was an unconstitutional ‘revision’, and think that winning that argument will do far more harm than the good it would do in undoing the ban).

    And at the same time I think that the way the power has been used has not been good, and that much of the dysfunction of our state government is a direct result of the poor decisions that we have made as voters.

    So i’m willing to listen to an argument which says “hey, this constitutional amendment process has gotten out of hand” … but I’m not yet convinced that the solution (reforming the initiative process) wouldn’t be worse than the problem, and I would be deeply suspicious of that argument were it proferred by people who pushed for the adoption of Proposition 8.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  92. I have yet to see a good reason to think of gays and lesbians as a minority class on par with African Americans. Even if sexual orientation was totally genetic (which hasn’t yet been shown…don’t hold your breath. Sexuality is simply too complicated for that), equating sexual orientation with race is a huge category mistake.

    Of course, I haven’t gone through all of the comments, so I might have missed something.

    Rich Bordner (ab3562)

  93. but that i’m not open to the argument “now that gay marriage is banned in the constitution, we should make it harder to change the constitution”.

    I haven’t heard anyone make that argument, to be honest. I’ve heard folks complain — as a result of Prop 8’s passage — that it’s too easy to change the Constitution, but it seems they want to make it harder to change the Constitution after Prop 8 is reversed.

    Steverino (69d941)

  94. A little belatedly, sorry,

    DRJ,

    We do take your posts seriously. We were making fun of the guy who said gay is the new black. Not you.

    Oh, shucks, I still can’t resist: Will the NBA be 90% gay soon?

    nk (5fa892)

  95. What got California in this mess in the first place is/was kowtowing to special interests.

    In the 1970’s California went with gender neutral language in our family code to appease feminism, you remember the we cant call a woman a woman because it means she is not a man so we all have to just be “its”, that way nobody “feels” less than someone else, supposedly.

    Now it went without saying that marriage was a contract between a man and a woman, it was never considered to be anything else in the history of this state. So in reality these gender neutral terms never had any effect until San Francisco started interpreting the family code completely different then it had been at anytime before.

    So in comes Prop 22 which gets rid of the gender neutral language so marriage is defined as it always has been, at the same time domestic partnership is added to the family code giving gay couples the same rights as heterosexual couples.

    7+ years later a certain judiciary decides to play legislator, so Californians decide to enact Prop 8 changing the constitution attempting to prevent the judiciary from legislating in the future.

    A new special interest group on the horizon, unmarried heterosexual couples with and without kids. They choose not to get marriage for whatever reasons and they are in reality denied the same rights as married couples so they want too abolish marriage completely, then we all have the same rights.

    Its all about forcing their ideas and beliefs upon the rest of society as a way of justifying their choices, all special interest groups do this as history has shown.

    ML (14488c)

  96. ML: I read an op-ed piece this morning from two straight women demanding that DPs be opened up to straight couples.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  97. Aphrael

    That is really stupid, but it doesn’t surprise me.

    ML (14488c)

  98. Comment by aphrael — 12/1/2008 @ 11:24 am

    Well, not everyone thinks such fantasies are bizarre.

    This is the natural result of the Multi-Culti PC crap that we are inundated with by those oh-so-responsible intellectuals of the Left.

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  99. Aphrael

    That reminds me of the women that wanted all Bible’s to have a gender neutral term for “man”, because they felt it excluded them, when in reality the word “man” in the Bible means humanity.
    Shit there is that word “man” again, just buried this time.

    ML (14488c)

  100. Another Drew: what’s the difference between a law requiring cabbies to carry passengers with alcohol, which is against the religion of Muslim cabbies, and a law requiring pharmacists to dispense the morning after pill, which is against the religion of Christian pharmacists?

    I think they’re the same issue, and I support both laws.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  101. Comment by aphrael — 12/1/2008 @ 12:12 pm

    Actually, there is no difference.
    The problem is that the short-sighted aims of the zealots on all sides require the state to intervene in areas that it should not have to.

    But, the case in Milwaukee was much more about the immigrant community there attempting to impose shariah on the community-at-large in place of the recognized system of laws that are on the books. The situation at the airport was just one small part of it (you know, the cabbies also didn’t want to carry dogs in their cabs either – for some other obscure Islamic reason).

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  102. Dogs are a different issue, I think. If a landlord can refuse to rent to people with pets, why can’t a cabbie refuse to carry pets?

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  103. So aphrael, what’s against your religion that I can force you to do?

    Please let me know, I’ll get on the legislators right away.

    I'm Geekier (8364b5)

  104. Because the cab-regs do not allow them that discretion.
    If you go to the archives of the Star-Tribune, or Power-Line, you will find a wealth of info on this problem at the airport in Minneapolis/St.Paul.

    What individuals wish to do in the privacy of their home is completely different than what they are required to do under the various public-accommodation laws enacted by the Congress, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – you remember that one, don’t you, seems to have settled some long, on-going argument about whether or not a shopkeeper could refuse service to someone over their race, religion, or national origin (and has been extended to include the religion of the shopkeeper now).

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  105. The difference being that if you’re against gay marriage for religious reasons, you can simply not marry someone of your own gender.

    Little forcing going on.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  106. “The AP Reports” was all I needed to read to know that fascist propaganda follows.

    Not gay nor black (17e21c)

  107. Another Drew: certainly the regulations should be complied with; but I thought on some level that we were discussing what the regulations should be.

    Leaving aside the question of what people who rent rooms in houses they are occupying can do, I don’t see what the difference is between requiring a cab driver to transport pets (despite, say, the potential for allergy) and requiring a landlord to rent to people with pets.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  108. and another thing…
    I am reminded of a quote of Oliver Wendell Holmes used by George Will in a recent column:
    “You have a right to Free Speech, but you have no Constitutional right to be a …”(in this case, police officer, who was fired for exercising his free-speech inappropriately).
    As so with the cabbies: They have a Right from their Creator to practice their religion free from governmental interference. But, they have no right to be a cabbie, which is licensed by the State, is regulated by same.

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  109. People in a democratic, egalitarian society like ours which is supposed to protect the civil liberties of the minority from the majority expect to have all the rights that everyone else has. Trying to limit one group to different but mostly the same rights is discrimination no matter how many bullshit justifications precede the “separate but equal” rights to make them “OK”.

    Of all the “morality” and church/state issues still out there this one has got to be just about at the bottom of the pile in terms of legitimacy.

    Our civil institutions should drop all the cherry picked old testament crap already. If Mr. WASP, can marry a black woman (or worse, a black Catholic woman! Gawsp!) or a Jew or Muslim or whatever non-protestant religion you want (all prohibited in the past by various interpretations of the Old Testament) then he can marry a male, gay, all of the above if he wants.

    He can’t expect people to like it or condone it but in the United States of America he should expect the state to recognize his marriage and all the legal obligations and rights that it brings with it.

    EdWood (c2268a)

  110. Comment by aphrael — 12/1/2008 @ 12:37 pm

    Having been out of the rental market for almost 30-years, I cannot say what the State of CA does, and does not permit; though, I do know that when I wished to rent a condo I owned to a woman who had small children, the State Supreme Court had recently decided that the HOA regulation against having residents under the age of X, did not prevent me from renting to this woman whose children were both under that age, and in fact, would subject me to civil liability if I did not.
    Pets: I don’t know.
    But, in the case of the cabbies, they were refusing guide-dogs, and animals in airline-approved containers, all because of their religious bigotry intolerance.

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  111. Comment by EdWood — 12/1/2008 @ 12:41 pm

    Except, Marriage is a construct of Religion, not of the State.

    I would remind you of those words of the 1st-Amendment:
    “…Congress shall make no laws…concerning the establishment of religion…or the free excercise thereof…”

    Government is instituted among men to ensure the rights of individuals, and the sanctity of contract, and property; and, in a Republic, its’ provisions shall apply to all equally.

    If the State wishes to sanction some form of contract between individuals of whatever gender, such as Domestic Partnership, it should be accorded the same respect as all other State-sanctioned contracts.
    It just should not be considered marriage.
    Perhaps we need to return to the Napoleanic Code for guidance on this, where no marriage performed under the aegis of the Church was considered valid unless it was preceeded by a civil ceremony at the Registrar’s Office?

    Another Drew (ff78fa)

  112. Except, Marriage is a construct of Religion, not of the State.

    Perhaps originally, but if that were the case now, I shouldn’t be able to have a Justice of the Peace (judge) marry me to my sweety.

    Not that I have a sweety.

    Which might explain the bitterness and cynicism. Or might be explained by. Whatever. :)

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  113. ‘Nother Drew wrote:

    Except, Marriage is a construct of Religion, not of the State.

    Not really, unless you wish to hold that it is a construct of every religion. Marriage has existed in one form or another — meaning: either monogamous or polygamous, though never homosexual — throughout our recorded history, in evert society and culture, regardless of which religion held sway over a given area.

    Marriage is a norm of human culture more than anything else.

    The Catholic Dana (3e4784)

  114. Echoing The Catholic Dana: Marriage is a societal construct, not a legal one. It’s had some legal rights assigned to it, but those rights can be obtained in other ways.

    Even in societies which approved of homosexuality, marriage was never same-sex.

    Steverino (69d941)

  115. By the way, were any gay groups protesting the removal of property rights from the owners of restaurants and bars when smoking was banned in those establishments?

    Steverino (69d941)

  116. EdWood,

    First, why should we equate homosexuality with religion and race?

    Secondly, race is irrelevant to marriage. Sex and gender, on the other hand, are integral to marriage. Equating the two categories is a stretch.

    To all who advocate for Same-sex marriage:

    Why is a desire/inclination/behavior (in this case, a desire/inclination for someone of the same gender) a proper grounding for a “right” (in this case, a right to marry whomever you choose)?

    Rich Bordner (bee410)

  117. No. As I said before marriage is a legal construct. Marriage is a contract issued by the state. It’s religious dimension exists solely in that Priests, rabbis, et. el., duly licensed by the state may perform legal marriages.

    And so can duly-licensed Elvis impersonators in Las Vegas.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  118. “race is irrelevant to marriage.”

    See Loving vs. Virginia, 1967.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  119. The people of California approved a state constitutional amendment to the effect that they don’t want homosexuals legally married to each other, and
    there isn’t a damn thing you can do about it.

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  120. Official Internet Data Office, of course there are things I can do about it.

    We can vote on this again; we regularly vote on things again in California. In the meantime, I can work to persuade people to change their mind.

    Isn’t that how Democracy isn’t supposed to work?

    aphrael (1c5097)

  121. Isn’t that how Democracy isn’t supposed to work?

    Yes, it is, and while I might not completely support your desired outcome, I certain support your effort to use the Process.

    The problem OIDO has, is that the process really just gets in his way. Also, he has little knowledge about how things work. He’s much like the New York Times that way.

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  122. Oh, now you’re for Democracy. How about that!

    Democracy says you’re getting equal treatment under the law now, and I agree.

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  123. Oh, now you’re for Democracy.

    And the Democratic Process, too.

    Might wanna look into it. Might learn something…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  124. (Post #117 was a reply to post #115, by aphrael.)

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  125. NOTE: I found and released from moderation several comments by David E. on this thread. You may want to scroll back and read them. It will also change the numbering of the comments so keep that in mind when you are reading comments that reference other comments by number. (Sorry about that.)

    DRJ (a50047)

  126. You may want to scroll back and read them

    Oh I think that’s pretty unlikely. I’d rathernot read the stuff that never goes through moderation. Who am I to question the wisdom of the filters?

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  127. Re David Errorstain at 56:

    Unlike yours, my comments are based on historical fact. In this case, the history of marriage in Western society (actually, all human societies heretofore).

    Gay marriage can be justified only by rejecting the definition of marriage as humans understood it until relatively recent times: as the foundation of a procreative family household. Did your father ever tell you that under Jewish law, it was not only permitted, but viewed as desirable, for a husband to divorce a barren wife (although there are prominent counterexamples, such as R. Yosef Karo, the author of the Shulchan Aruch).

    The idea of marriage as being founded on companionship did not begin to surface until the Renaissance, and then only slowly did it begin to dominate–not until the late 18th century was it thought to be a primary motive for marriage, and even then the original procreative purpose remained important. That it should be the only purpose is something that did not come into view until the 20th century (for example, my paternal grandparents were married to each by the families just before WWI, and although they stayed married, it was a sorry state of affairs in which neither one loved or respected the other one. But they had four children…) And even now the view that it is the only purpose is rejected by many people.
    When society in general accepts the new definition of marriage, then gay marriage will be accepted, but not until then. And the proper place to discuss the matter is the legislature and the election booth, not the judicial bench.

    kishnevi (7a9e8b)

  128. David, seeing Milk is a bit harder than you might think, given that it’s only showing in 36 theatres in the country.

    That said, i went to see it Saturday night at the indie theatre in Dallas; I thought it was a bit hagiographic (possibly an inevitable risk), but most of the actors involved did really good jobs.

    aphrael (bc967d)

  129. When society in general accepts the new definition of marriage, then gay marriage will be accepted, but not until then

    I think there’s something to that; certainly in my social circles both gay marriage and the notion that marriage is about the companionship of loving adults are widely accepted.

    aphrael (bc967d)

  130. My comment #128 is now an orphaned comment. Now comment #128 should be read to mean that post #126 is a reply to #124!

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  131. My comment #128 is now an orphaned comment. Comment #128 should be read to mean that comment #126 is a reply to comment #124!

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  132. OIDO, I think it was clear that your comment was a response to me. :)

    I also think your sarcasm is inappropropriately placed. I’m generally speaking very pro-democracy. I’ve said elsewhere on this site that I oppose the argument that Prop 8 was an unconstitutional revision. Before the election, I said that I thought my side could win at the ballot box.

    In general, the entire point to democracy is that nobody has the authority to make rules for the governance of the people except the people themselves; I think that’s true. It’s certainly true that sometimes the people make terrible decisions; but the proper response to that is to work to persuade the people to change their mind.

    It’s also true that in some cases the people decide to take things outside of the political process; that was the case, for example, with the rule saying that the right of the people to speak freely shall not be infringed.

    But those are rare cases, and in general, the people get the government we want. That’s the *entire point* to the system.

    aphrael (bc967d)

  133. David,

    I’m kinda surprised that you referenced that case in support of your position….it actually supports the claim I made–that race is inconsequential to marriage.

    In that decision, the court wrote,
    “Marriage is one of the “basic civil rights of man,” fundamental to our very existence and survival…. To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State’s citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discrimination. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State.”

    This is exactly my contention in the manner of race and marriage.

    Why would you think it supports *your* position?

    Rich Bordner (533e26)

  134. Okay, if you really think that the process which passed Proposition 8 was not unconstitutional, then you are pro-democracy. However, my sarcasm isn’t really misplaced because when a court legalized gay marriage for a while, you weren’t exactly running around with petitions to place a new ballot proposition (which turned out to be Proposition 8) in front of California voters.

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  135. However, my sarcasm isn’t really misplaced because when a court legalized gay marriage for a while, you weren’t exactly running around with petitions to place a new ballot proposition (which turned out to be Proposition in front of California voters.

    You’re still on this kick, aren’t you. Did you not learn your lesson? I recall DISTINCTLY, you mindless dolt, Aph saying he did NOT agree with what the judges did.

    You seem tied up on “you have to agree with Prop 8 to be pro-democracy”, and it makes you look like an IDIOT.

    Just shut up, ok? The big kids are talking…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  136. It’s not a question of loving “supporting my position” but rather being the overture to the opera now before us. We would all do well to remember that back in the 60’s when the crusade for civil rights was gaining widespread public support, and Sidney Poitier was the number one box office star, opposition to interracial marriage was overwhelming. Far more so than opposition to same-sex marraige today.

    But Sidney Poitier paid no attention and married Joannna Shimkus anyway.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  137. Apparently you can’t have an 8 followed by ).

    Of course I didn’t run around with petitions to undo gay marriage. I support gay marriage, and I think it’s stupid to respond to judicial overreach in my favor by writing into the constitution a policy decision I disagree with. The correct way to seek to punish the judges would be to recall them or to vote against them the next time they sit for confirmation, exactly as the voters of this state did to Rose Bird in the 1980s.

    That said, I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the decision in the first place. As a political matter I wish the Supreme Court hadn’t gone there; doing so badly hurt the cause of same-sex marriage. But I’m not sure they were wrong on the merits.

    The underlying question boils down to: when interpreting ‘nor shall any citizen be denied the equal protection of the laws’, how do you determine when that’s happening? Everyone agrees that laws which discriminate on the basis of race violate it, and most people agree that laws which discriminate on the basis of gender do. But what about other categories?

    The strict intent-of-the-legislators position would probably be that only race matters; but the courts have rejected that by including gender. But clearly the rule doesn’t ban all treatment of people differently by the state, so how do you know *which* treatment of people differently by the state is prohibited?

    The California Supreme Court put forward a theory for this and said that, under this theory, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation counts. Their theory is reasonable seeming, but I don’t know enough about the intent of the people who drafted the California constitution to say, and I don’t know if i’m comfortable with ‘equal protection’ being treated as a phrase whose meaning shifts with time the way ‘cruel and unusual punishment’ does.

    That said, the most ironic part of Proposition 8 is that it *doesn’t undo the equal protection decision*. That is, gay marriage is illegal, but sexual orientation is still a suspect classification in California, and the rules the court propounded for how suspect classifications are detected remain in place. So, except for the definition of marriage, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is unconstitutional unless you can present a compelling state interest in it.

    At the end of the day, this really is a judicial question. The people have spoken, but the people spoke very vaguely, and the courts have to decide what they meant.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  138. At some point the judiciary has to defer to the voters, or we might as well disband the legislative and executive branches of government and submit to a Dictatorship of the Robe.

    The Republic was founded upon the concept (one of many) of consent of the governed;
    How many times does it take for the cloistered to recognize that, in this matter, consent is not given?

    Another Drew (4472ac)

  139. Of course the judiciary has to defer to the voters. That’s why turning around and saying Prop. 8 was a ‘revision’ would be incorrect.

    But when the judiciary is confronted with a vague statement by the voters (“no citizen shall be denied equal protection of the laws”), it has to try to figure out what those words mean. When they get it wrong, the voters can correct them.

    In this case, the ‘correction’ by the voters applied only to marriage and left the rest of the decision standing. Does that imply consent to the rest of the decision?

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  140. If ‘civil unions’ were in every respect equal with regards to rights, privileges and immunities in the state of California, activists would still want ‘Gay Marriage’ because they want to redefine marriage. That makes them the aggressor in this cultural war. Further such activists have already demonstrated their hostility towards religious traditions.

    What activists for gay marriage fundamentally refuse to acknowledge is how many self-proclaimed conservatives accept the premises of equality before the law under the title of ‘civil unions’.

    This ignored accomodation is very parallel to ‘separate but equal’. The demand for gay marriage breaks the parallel. In that way gay activists are demanding ‘call us white’. We will not.

    Cobb (68fd91)

  141. Let’s get the rights first — then argue about who calls who what.

    Meanwhile . . . Jonah is Beyond Pathetic.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  142. aphrael, both legally and realistically you can’t have anything “implied” by a voter initiative. The bottom line is that no one has qualified a ballot initiative to strip sexual orientation from the scope of equal protection under California state law.

    SPQR (72771e)

  143. SPQR: I agree … which means that the voters of the state of California have carved out an exception to equal protection. Laws which discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation are unconstitutional … except for the marriage laws.

    Because of this, I think it’s pretty clear that the first time a straight couple sues claiming that the domestic partnership law is unconstitutional discrimination in violation of the state constitution, they will win, and domestic partnerships will be opened up to every couple, gay and straight.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  144. aphrael, assuming that Prop 8 stands, I think you have your logic backwards.

    SPQR (72771e)

  145. Cobb: maybe that’s true, but maybe it’s not. Almost every Republican member of the state legislature voted against the Domestic Partnership bill in 2003. Time has passed, but I don’t know that the current Republican members of the legislature would be any more likely to vote for it today.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  146. SPQR: please explain. If discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is still prohibited, and domestic partnerships clearly discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, don’t they clearly violate the constitution?

    We know that they don’t violate the terms of Prop. 8 (because they didn’t violate the terms of Pro. 22), but ISTM they still violate equal protection … which means that once a court hears it, the legislature’s choices are: (a) abolish domestic partnership altogether, or (b) open it up to everyone.

    I can’t imagine the Democrat majority legislature, a majority of whom (that is, a majority of the Democrats, not a majority of the legislature) were elected from districts which opposed Prop. 8, doing (a). So (b) is the likely result.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  147. Another Drew 115 and following 116.

    Now there is a good idea. Make ALL the legal/civic parts of domestic arrangements (formerly marriages), regardless of the sexual orientation of the spouses, that are required/regulated/and recognized by the state into “Domestic Partnerships” with all rights normally associated with marriages such as inheritance, adoption, leasing rights, hospital visitation etc.etc. being recognized and protected by the state. You have to get a marriage license anyway right?

    “Marriages” can be defined as the vows that two people make in the presence of God. That keeps the government out of marriages where it shouldn’t be anyway. Then, heteros who are afraid that gay marriage is going to do whatever it is they are afraid it’s going to do can take it up with their church. Homos who want to get married in a church can go get married in any church that will perform the ceremony. If some people don’t like sharing the word “marriage” with gay people they can call what they are doing “special heterosexuals only marriage” or whatever they want.

    EdWood (c2268a)

  148. Rich Bordner 120

    I agree that race and religion should be irrelevant to a marriage (apparently as a practical matter they are often not irrelevant). My point was that there used to be laws prohibiting interracial or extra-faith marriages that were based on interpretations of scripture. These laws have been done away with. (Now churches just kick you out if you marry against their teachings… which they have every right to do, example: my mother in law was ex-communicated by the Catholic church for marrying a divorced man).

    My point was that the state is refusing to recognize homosexual marriages based on an interpretation of scripture. That needs to be done away with. As per my comment above, I don’t like the idea of the state interfering with who can marry whom. That is the church’s job. The state needs to make sure everyone has the same contractual and civil rights.

    EdWood (c2268a)

  149. Alphrael, false dichomity. If marriage is viewed as an exception to the principle that sexual orientation is a suspect class for equal protection purposes, then offering marriage to one class and domestic partnership to another class ineligible for it would not be a violation of equal protection. The idea that heterosexuals are being discriminated against for not being offered domestic partnership versus marriage is I think a frivolous argument. Not least since domestic partnership itself is not a fundamental right.

    SPQR (72771e)

  150. Fundamental right or no, I think you’d have to establish a compelling state interest in the discrimination *or* you’d have to establish that there’s no discrimination involved.

    But it’s already been established as a matter of law that there *is* discrimination involved and that marriage and domestic partnerships aren’t equal. It’s also been established that there’s no compelling state interest in the distinction.

    Unless the argument is that the constitutional ban on marriage in itself creates a compelling state interest in offering domestic partnerships to gay people only.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  151. aphrael, no, it is not already established that there is discrimination. There is a court decision that gay people were being discriminated against, and Prop 8 removes the underpinning of that decision. There is no decision that heterosexual couples are being discriminated against for not being offered the unequal treatment of domestic partnerships.

    Your assumption of symmetry is without basis and does not really provide an argument. Equal protection law does not work that way.

    SPQR (72771e)

  152. SPQR: I’m not convinced that Prop 8 removes the determination that there is discrimination; I think it creates an exception: “discrimination is not allowed EXCEPT FOR marriage.”

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  153. And I’m inclined to agree with Aph on this one…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  154. Proposition 8 did not say “discrimination is not allowed EXCEPT FOR marriage.” It said, and I quote: “Shall the California Constitution be changed to eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry providing that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California?”

    There is nothing vague about that.

    Results:
    6,838,107 (52.3%) Yes votes
    6,246,463 (47.7%) No votes

    Official Internbet Data Office (85f70b)

  155. OIDC: I agree there is nothing vague about Proposition 8.

    But the marriage cases say, “the equal protection clause means discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is not allowed” and “limiting marriage to same-sex couples is discrimination.”

    so when you put the two together, i think you get “the equal protection clause means discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is not allowed” and “only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized.”

    so does this mean that limiting marriage between a man and a woman isn’t discrimination, or that it’s an exception to the general rule regarding discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation?

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  156. Gays have the same rights to marry as anyone else in California. The basic rules are that you must be old enough to get married, you must not already be married, and you must marry a member of the opposite sex. These rules apply to everyone, equally. It’s called “Equal protection.”

    Michael Huffington didn’t have a problem with that.

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  157. OIDC: The Supreme Court of the California said that it isn’t equal protection, and as far as I can tell, the voters of the State of California have not undone that decision. They’ve just said that in this case, unequal protection is OK.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  158. Aphrael, that’s not what the text of Proposition 8 says. Here’s the full text:

    This initiative measure is submitted to the people in accordance with the provisions of Article II, Section 8, of the California Constitution.
    This initiative measure expressly amends the California Constitution by adding a section thereto; therefore, new provisions proposed to be added are printed in italic type to indicate that they are new.

    SECTION 1. Title This measure shall be known and may be cited as the “California Marriage Protection Act.”

    SECTION 2. Section 7.5 is added to Article I of the California Constitution, to read:

    SEC. 7.5. Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California

    It doesn’t say anything about unequal protection being okay.

    Steverino (69d941)

  159. Let me put a finer point on it:

    The people of California are not saying, “Unequal protection is okay in this case.” Rather, they are saying, “The court got it wrong, defining marriage as between one man and one woman isn’t unequal protection.”

    Steverino (69d941)

  160. Steverino: ah, but the court explicitly said that this is unequal protection.

    So, if the voters didn’t say anything about unequal protection, doesn’t the court’s interpretation that it *is* unequal protection stand?

    I understand what the words of Prop. 8 say; they’re very simple and straightforward. The question is how they interact with what the court said.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  161. “…but the court explicitly said that this is unequal protection.”

    And, the people, through Prop-8, has told the Court that it is wrong.

    The question remains as to whether the Court will listen to the People (“consent of the governed”).

    Another Drew (4472ac)

  162. Moreover, on the ballot it was made quite clear what Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California” would mean in practice ie. cancelling the court’s May decision that made same-sex marriage legal.

    David Ehrenstein (15795c)

  163. Steverino: ah, but the court explicitly said that this is unequal protection.

    So, if the voters didn’t say anything about unequal protection, doesn’t the court’s interpretation that it *is* unequal protection stand?

    I understand what the words of Prop. 8 say; they’re very simple and straightforward. The question is how they interact with what the court said.

    I’ll repeat myself, because you seemed to not understand: the people said, “The court was wrong. Marriage as we define it is not unequal protection.”

    Do you get that? Or is it your contention that the court is always right?

    When the people think the courts are wrong, the only way for them to say it is to pass an amendment to the Constitution. So, that’s what happened.

    I think it’s unfair of you to characterize this as the people saying, “Unequal protection is okay in this instance.”

    Steverino (69d941)

  164. Steverino: the people did not say that. The people said “Marriage is as we define it.” They didn’t say anything whatsoever about equal protection, because the language of the law they adopted doesn’t say anything about equal protection.

    There are basically two ways to take the people’s decision on Prop 8:

    “marriage is between a man and a woman” with NO COMMENT WHATSOEVER on the question of equal protection, and

    “marriage is between a man and a woman and that’s equal protection”.

    the plain text of proposition 8 doesn’t include anything about equal protection. So how can you argue for the latter interpretation and not the former interpretation?

    I’m not trying to be unfair; I’m trying to look at precisely what the initiative said and not read into it other meanings. The proposition doesn’t say anything about equal protection, so it doesn’t change existing law on the question of equal protection.

    aphrael (d25503)

  165. I don’t think that marriage involves so many rights, and I think the legal strategy of redefining marriage is a failed one in California. Therefore, getting back to the original premise, there is the entire question of what domestic partners don’t have that they might sue for on the basis of equal protection violations.

    That question has been presumed moot because activist for gay marriage are convinced that a plurality with eventually give in. But it seems to me that the equal protection suits should continue. Or is the problem that there are no cases to be had and the very legal definition of marriage is the final frontier?

    Cobb (c45820)

  166. No, of course the idea of equal protection wasn’t explicity in the text of Proposition 8, and it didn’t have to be. My contention was that Proposition 8 passes that test, for reasons I explained earlier. Equal protection arguments against Proposition 8 were advanced by liberal judges to subvert the will of the people, by looking for wiggle room. (If not for liberal judges, Proposition 187 would be law and California wouldn’t have a $28 billion budget deficit.)

    It remains a challenge for gays to explain what extra thing legal same-sex marriage would give them that domestic partnership doesn’t. What is it? Lavish weddings at Grace Cathedral? Announcements in the wedding section of the newspaper?

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)


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