Patterico's Pontifications

10/9/2014

A Thread on the Supreme Court Allowing Gay Marriage to Go Forward In Several States Across the Country

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:13 pm



I’m a little late to the topic but I feel I owe you guys a thread on it. It’s a bit of a chaotic situation, but basically the Court refused to hear a bunch of cases, and gay marriage was suddenly legal in a handful of states. Then Anthony Kennedy blocked a 9th Circuit decision allowing gay marriage in Idaho and Nevada, and then quickly took it back as to Nevada, saying it was a mistake.

Personally, I like Ted Cruz’s approach:

“It is beyond dispute that when the 14th Amendment was adopted 146 years ago, as a necessary post-Civil War era reform, it was not imagined to also mandate same-sex marriage, but that is what the Supreme Court is implying today. The Court is making the preposterous assumption that the People of the United States somehow silently redefined marriage in 1868 when they ratified the 14th Amendment.

“Nothing in the text, logic, structure, or original understanding of the 14th Amendment or any other constitutional provision authorizes judges to redefine marriage for the Nation. It is for the elected representatives of the People to make the laws of marriage, acting on the basis of their own constitutional authority, and protecting it, if necessary, from usurpation by the courts.

“Marriage is a question for the States. That is why I have introduced legislation, S. 2024, to protect the authority of state legislatures to define marriage. And that is why, when Congress returns to session, I will be introducing a constitutional amendment to prevent the federal government or the courts from attacking or striking down state marriage laws.

Wouldn’t this be something covered by the 10th Amendment?

A little reminder on the 10th Amendment may be in order. I meant to say something about it after I noted that Congress has far outstripped its authority to regulate commerce, and a troll said I was wrong about this, claiming:

Prove it.
Show me the text of the Constitution that establishes that.
Oh right, you can’t. And we have both courts and politicians going back over a century thinking otherwise.

Oh right, I can. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you . . . the Tenth Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

This is why ObamaCare, or a Department of Education, or any of the numerous other things our federal government does on a daily basis, are all unconstitutional.

Now, to circle back to gay marriage, if the 14th Amendment actually addressed gay marriage, it would trump the 10th Amendment, because it comes later. But as Cruz notes, the 14th Amendment had nothing whatever to do with gay marriage. So let’s leave it to the states.

And it would be nice, as I have always said, if the courts in those states would leave it to the people of those states. Attitudes are changing anyway.

231 Responses to “A Thread on the Supreme Court Allowing Gay Marriage to Go Forward In Several States Across the Country”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. Kennedy for sure. And likely Ginzburg from the other direction. I bet Kennedy told the four conservatives, that if they voted for cert, they could not count on his vote. Ginzburg has expressed, in the past, the view that some issues should be allowed to percolate in the states for a while, and probably declined to be the fourth vote for cert on the liberal side.

    nk (dbc370)

  3. The following is posted as a tribute to the beautiful, compassionate, big-hearted people throughout American society, particularly in the Supreme Court, who embrace the idea that human sexuality is analogous to race, ethnicity or gender. Or that just as, for example, a black person really, truly, absolutely can’t change (at least easily) the color of his skin, or a woman really, truly, absolutely can’t change the fundamentals (at least easily) of her genitalia, the same applies to sexual orientation. How nice. How wonderful. And while we’re at it, a big shout out to Nidal Hasan!

    huffingtonpost.com, September 2011: [Actress Fran] Drescher’s marriage didn’t end because of her husband and now co-producer, Peter Jacobson’s sexual orientation (she reveals they had great sex!), but rather because of his “controlling and svengali-ish” behavior — the whole gay thing, that was just the cherry on top.

    [Fran Drescher]: I have to say I left him not the way it’s portrayed in the show. I hit a midlife crisis and needed to find my way outside of the marriage. He begged me not to leave him and cried and was very angry with me. He didn’t talk to me. When ‘The Nanny’ ended he moved to New York.

    [Huffington Post]: Did you sense at all during the marriage that he was gay?

    [FD]: I thought he was metrosexual. He was very controlling and svengali-ish, that was really the thing that bothered me about him.

    [HP]: But that has nothing to do with him being gay.

    [FD]: That’s my point! I left him for altogether different reasons. That wasn’t our issue. We had good sex, we had a very normal marriage. He ended up exploring his true orientation. There was nothing keeping him straight.

    [HP]: That’s interesting. If he wasn’t gay it sounds like you could reconcile.

    [FD]: We probably could but now we have the best of both worlds.

    [HP]: Is he your best friend?

    [FD]: Yes, I mean my parents are my best friends and three or four other people but he and I have a history. We started dating when we were 15.

    Mark (c160ec)

  4. “You can smoke the baloney pony, but not a Marlboro.”

    Cigarette ads will corrupt the children, but 24/7 Logotv won’t.

    In a pigs eye.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  5. As I just posted in the last thread, even if you like the idea of forcing all states to create homosexual marriage, the process matters. By allowing leftists to abuse the courts and make up law, you’re supporting the destruction of our system of law for a short term result. You wi be stung in the end.

    njrob (cee3e3)

  6. I truly can’t wait to see the next demand for special constitutional rights treatment for the LBGT whateverwhatever crowd. This was never about marital rights. It was about establishing the principle that they are a victim class and are thus entitled to special rights.

    Just what new “rights” these may be now will be fun to learn.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  7. This is proceeding much as a Democrat strategist would hope: gays are being forced into Dem-client status as their right to marriage is now subject to the whims of a court.

    Roe brought us 40+ years of demagoguery and scare tactics (“The right to get an abortion is only one slim vote from being lost!!1!!”), fooling 3 generations of young single women into thinking the Dems had their backs. If Roe had never happened, the issue would have long since been settled, somewhere along the lines that the vast middle think is proper rather than the extreme position the courts have taken, and it would no longer infest our politics.

    Now, rather than let this play out in legislatures and initiatives, and being settled in a way that is lasting, the courts have decided to preempt.

    Further, they have done so in ways that are embarrassingly dishonest. Many of these cases have been shams, where the district court judge is hand-picked by the plaintiffs (got the wrong judge? drop the case and let someone else file) and then the appeal is defaulted by dishonorable politicians (but I repeat myelf).

    This is the kind of thing that festers for decades, and that’s pretty much the plan. Just wait for the next confirmation hearing as “gay marriage” shares top MSM billing with “abortion rights.”

    Meh. And I support gay marriage. I suspect those that don’t are less happy.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  8. I’m also sure Roberts voted to punt. It’s what he does.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  9. Some predictions:

    1) In any state where these marriages are allowed, they will never be disallowed.

    2) In any state that has a Democrat AG, ever, there will be a successful district court case and then the state will fail to appeal.

    3) A sizable minority will decide that America is no longer ruled by the people and the legitimacy of the government will continue to wane.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  10. Minority rules.
    we are screwed.

    mg (31009b)

  11. 5. As I just posted in the last thread, even if you like the idea of forcing all states to create homosexual marriage, the process matters. By allowing leftists to abuse the courts and make up law, you’re supporting the destruction of our system of law for a short term result. You wi be stung in the end.

    njrob (cee3e3) — 10/9/2014 @ 10:29 pm

    Well, yes, the process matters. But that’s why having the central government impose gay marriage up on an unwilling populace is the appropriate way to go about it. This is the preferred process.

    The only reason the left has seized upon gay marriage as a signature issue is because it provides a rationale to empower the government and delegitimize social institutions that predate government and exist outside it.

    Since that’s the case, since the point of gay marriage is create an excuse for the federal government to usurp powers that it doesn’t legitimately have then imposing gay marriage by force is the appropriate way to achieve it.

    The original plan was that government worked for the people. Now it’s the other way around. Literally. You’re not baking that gay wedding cake for that gay couple. You’re baking that wedding cake because the government tells you to or else. Why on earth would you let the old boss you just deposed pretend they still have a say in how their lives are going to be run from here on out?

    Imposing gay marriage by judicial diktat lets the people know in no uncertain terms who the new boss is in this fundamentally transformed country that they asked for. It’s called “putting them in their place.” And to paraphrase H.L. Mencken, since that’s what they thought they wanted they deserve to get it. Good and hard.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  12. If civil rights were left to state-wide popular vote, I think that we would have a lot less civil rights today.

    carlitos (c24ed5)

  13. this is what that famous ‘First Things Symposium’ was about in ’97, judicial overreach, and the collapse of consent,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  14. Yes, carlitos, we were very lucky to have the Bill of rights descend from Heaven on golden tablets instead of a bunch of people voting to ratify it.

    nk (dbc370)

  15. Thanks designed for sharing such a good thought, paragraph is fastidious, thats why i have read
    it completely

    no2 blast (869a43)

  16. A reporter recently described North Korea as a necrocracy — rule by the dead, because it still strictly follows the rule established by granddaddy Kim Jong including but not limited to the elevation of his son and grandson to his titular position. Well, reporters write a lot of crap, but there’s something to it. Earlier, Korea had the emperor system which included retired emperors still wielding power. When an emperor got too old to sit a horse in battle and too bored to audit the tax collections, he would ostensibly retire. The new emperor would do the dangerous and tedious stuff and the retired emperor would still formulate policy.

    We have kind of the same effect with the federal judiciary. Reagan is still wielding power through Scalia and Kennedy and his lower court appointees. Ditto for Clinton and the Bushes and their respective appointees. A necro-geronto-cracy?

    Or you could call it glacial democracy? The Presidents who appoint these judges are elected. The Senates which confirm them are elected. The consequences of those elections are felt for years after like an ice sheet slowly creeping from the poles to the equator. And pushing it back will be be just as slow over a lot of years and a lot of elections.

    And if you like this comment, I could also speculate on the effect David Souter had on the Court in matters regarding homosexuality. And I mean the Court as an institution, not just any sentiment he may still invoke in Kennedy or Ginzburg.

    nk (dbc370)

  17. Kevin M, at 7:

    to the extent that gays are being forced into Dem-client status, that’s a result of Republican politics as much as it is a strategy of court battles.

    In California, every Republican legislator voted against *domestic partnerships*. In New York, two of the three Republicans who voted for gay marriage were primaried out because of conservative opposition. As a gay man, I *have to* assume that any Republican legislator will support repealing gay marriage and/or repealing domestic partnerships and/or support repealing anti-discrimination ordinances, unless they have made very clear that they won’t do that.

    Maybe that will change with time. But it’s very, very hard to trust that it will.

    ——-

    Steve57, at 11:

    *As a matter of law*, the legal status of the gay marriage was *irrelevant* to the case of the wedding cake baker. It was entirely about the *anti-discrimination law* – a law *passed by the legislature*.

    The outcome of the case in no way turned on legal recognition of the marriage.

    aphrael (001863)

  18. I was shocked the court decided to punt, because it’s *very difficult* to undo this later — it would create a sizeable group of married couples whose marriages would be in question if the court later took the case and overruled the appeals courts.

    aphrael (001863)

  19. aphrael #17,

    Does a politician’s position on gay marriage trump all other issues when you decide who to vote for?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  20. DRJ – it doesn’t generally trump all other issues, no.

    But I’m a married gay man, and it’s *very difficult* for me to bring myself to vote for someone who has an announced intention of dissolving my marriage.

    There are circumstances in which I would do so. But the bar is very, very, very high.

    aphrael (001863)

  21. How high a bar? Plus, it sounds like you haven’t lived in places where there was a choice, since most of the candidates in your elections support gay marriage. The only time you may have that choice is in a national election, which means voting Republican. Is there any potential Republican nominee you could imagine voting for?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  22. I was shocked the court decided to punt, because it’s *very difficult* to undo this later — it would create a sizeable group of married couples whose marriages would be in question if the court later took the case and overruled the appeals courts.

    I view this as judicial cynicism on the part of at least Ginzburg and Kennedy. When the case does come up again, they’ll point to the number of states with gay marriage, using the incorporation modus operandi, glossing over the fact that in the majority of the states it was by judicial action. I think you should feel optimistic about gay marriage being a fait accompli.

    And I would have the exact same attitude you describe in your comment 20. It would be foolish to have any other in your circumstances. I suppose if some politico supported gay marriage but promised to nuke Russia the minute he was sworn in but otherwise ….

    nk (dbc370)

  23. we’d be in a much bigger pickle if the berobed whores were to say this constitution thingy sanctions blatant unabashed bigotry I think

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  24. DRJ – well, I live in NYC, where there is no choice on most things. :(

    Prior to that I lived in California, and there were choices there. I voted for two Republicans in the last statewide election in California. One was for AG, where the Republican candidate said he intended to change the state’s position and resume the defense of Prop 8, but there were other issues which were more important to me (basically, I have serious problems with the way Kamala Harris ran the SF DA’s office).

    For the federal election in 2016 – I don’t have a good sense of who the likely Republican candidates are, and the situation is complicated by the fact that I am troubled by electing the spouse of a former president (I think this is just as problematic as re-electing the same president four times – one of the reasons I couldn’t support Hillary Clinton in 2008). So: I don’t know. :)

    aphrael (001863)

  25. I think the fact she whitewashed the murder of four men in Benghazi, appeased Volodya with ‘theas reset’ and otherwise made a hash of our foreign policy is more germain, but what do I know,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  26. Narciso – my “spouse of a president is too close to the president to not contravene the intent of the 22d amendment” concern is a threshold concern. Unless you can convince me not to worry about it, I don’t even get to asking about anything else.

    aphrael (001863)

  27. so if she wasn’t a spouse, you’d vote for her,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  28. And it would be nice, as I have always said, if the courts in those states would leave it to the people of those states. Attitudes are changing anyway.

    Attitudes can change in various directions. The point of the judiciary’s activity is to ensure that the legal profession retains control of social policy and not ordinary people. Until the legal profession is appropriately disciplined by other social strata and configurations, this will continue to be a problem.

    Art Deco (ee8de5)

  29. Steve57 (e409e4) — 10/10/2014 @ 4:12 am

    Steve, I agree with everything you posted. My comments were directed towards those who don’t worry about these cases because they agree with the result. They claim that this battle is lost and we need to move on. They are being completely dishonest by asking us to move on because these cases show that our courts no longer follow the rule of law, but are in effect judicial oligarchs who punish those who dare disagree.

    Then when a case ends up before the courts on a position that matters to them, the courts have shown they are under no obligation to rule according to the law and will instead rule according to their personal preferences. The voter id rulings show this result.

    njrob (e7ea6e)

  30. If civil rights were left to state-wide popular vote, I think that we would have a lot less civil rights today.

    carlitos (c24ed5) — 10/10/2014 @ 5:55 am

    Define civil rights. Do you mean the civil rights act or do you mean natural rights endowed by our Creator?

    njrob (e7ea6e)

  31. Narciso – if she were not the spouse of a former President, I would then look at her record, her statements, etc, and make the decision based on those. I *might* vote for her, I might *not*; it depends on things I haven’t looked at.

    But being a spouse of a former president is a sufficient bar that I don’t even look at the record, statements, etc.

    aphrael (001863)

  32. #17

    aphrael,

    I would have voted against domestic partnerships only because I favor SSM and dislike the idea of “marriage lite.” Perhaps that’s a quibble.

    There are any number of GOPers who favor SSM though the normal legislative process. I think the decision to go to the courts happened as a result of Prop 8, where the “legislative” process failed unexpectedly. It was a choice of expedience that will come back to haunt gays for the rest of your lifetime.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  33. Kevin M – there may be “any number of GOPers who favor SSM through the normal legislative process” – but if you look at what happens when it does go through the normal legislative process, the overwhelming majority of GOP legislators vote against it, and those who don’t get attacked in the subsequent primary and lose more often than not.

    So my question back is: why are those GOPers who favor SSM so unable to influence their elected officials, and on what basis should I as a gay voter assume that would change?

    aphrael (001863)

  34. Note that that last comment isn’t an endorsement of the judicial strategy. It’s intended more as a reiteration of my point that the actions of Republican legislators already leave gay people except “Dem client-status”.

    aphrael (001863)

  35. 17. …The outcome of the case in no way turned on legal recognition of the marriage.
    aphrael (001863) — 10/10/2014 @ 7:31 am

    Yes. So?

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  36. “nothing in the text of the 14th Amendment”….except for the part about the equal protection of the laws.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  37. And I am curious why legislative intent is of no importance in deciding what Obamacare statutes mean but of signal importance in deciding what the 14th Amendment means?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  38. Steve57, if the outcome of the baker case did not in any way turn on gay marriage, then the case is not useful as evidence for or against the claim that gay marriage is about any particular goal.

    aphrael (001863)

  39. NJRob – one of the things that’s really difficult about this set of cases is that, to many of us on the left, it’s *completely obvious* that “equal protection of the laws” means “same sex couples and opposite sex couples must be treated equally by the state”. It’s as obviously true to most of my friends as the claim that “the fourteenth amendment wasn’t about sexual orientation at all” is to, say, Patterico.

    Which is to say: once this goes to court, there’s no outcome possible which isn’t going to leave a large number of people thinking that the court is ignoring the constitution.

    aphrael (001863)

  40. Good Lord, the constitutional analysis in this post is silly. The 10th amendment does not control the federal government with regards to people’s individual rights, which are protected by the 5 th and 14th amendments and by the supremacy clause of the Constitution.

    I am a citizen of the United States the fact that I am also a citizen of Massachusetts Kentucky Texas or California does not give the state to the right abrogate my federal constitutional rights. This is a question (incorporation) that was settled hundred years ago. Florida cannot keep me from voting, Florida cannot prohibit my speech, Florida cannot keep me from carrying a gun without due process. These are my rights as a citizen of United States and the tramp your petty little states rights manifesto manifesto.

    Stilicho (cdae93)

  41. Yes, pretty little Stilicho, but if the federal Constitution does not give the federal government the power to grant you a marriage license or a driver’s license or a gun license or a dog license, the Tenth Amendment reserves that power to the states.

    nk (dbc370)

  42. 40- All Florida (or any other jurisdiction) has to do is to convict you of a Felony (which, in the Administrative State, is not that great of task), and you are toast, Dear One.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  43. You have to begin with the text of the 14th Amendment, which states:

    All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

    The text seems very clear. Any and every law created by the a state must comply with these requirements. If a state makes any law that violates these requirements the federal government has the authority under this amendment to intervene.

    Under the Tenth Amendment the states have the authority to regulate legal domestic partnership arrangements. All 50 states have done so through civil marriage laws. These laws, however, must comply with the requirements of the 14th Amendment. Unless the states can demonstrate that refusing to grant civil marriage recognition to domestic partnerships between people of the same sex will harm other people in society, the state cannot do so under the 14th Amendment.

    States do have other options. They can use other names besides marriage for these civil contracts. For example, they could call them ‘domestic partnership agreements’ or ‘civil unions’. They can get out of the domestic partnership business altogether and allow individuals make such arrangements on their own terms through private contracts that are subjected to standard contract law. But since there is no evidence that granting same sex couples equal protection under the law does no harm to other people withing society, the states cannot deny same sex couples civil marriage recognition.

    Joe (33fd9a)

  44. But since there is no evidence that granting same sex couples equal protection under the law does no harm to other people withing society, the states cannot deny same sex couples civil marriage recognition.

    Also Sprach Zarathustra. Nice pronouncement. Which tablet of Hammurabi is it engraved on? Or, in other words, you just made that s*** up, Joe.

    nk (dbc370)

  45. The lack of evidence of harm has been pretty convincingly pointed out by a number of courts who looked at it including by that known liberal squish Judge posner.

    To deny some group the equal protection of the laws you have to do more than simply assume harm and then pretend there must be some somewhere. In other words no, you don’t get to make things up.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  46. it would be nice, but they don’t have to do anything, traditional marriage, is a key institution,
    critical to the entire structure of society, that is what gives it a privileged position,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  47. Well, yeah, judges get to make s*** up. “Viewed in retrospect, it was not unforeseeable” is still my favorite, but “Are not three generations of imbeciles enough?” is a close second, tied with growing corn on your farm to feed to your own calves as “affecting interstate commerce”.

    nk (dbc370)

  48. Posner could as easily have said, “Fudgepackers and muffdivers are bad enough by themselves, there’s no need to double them up”. Just as much authority for that analysis as the one he made. That’s the beef. Judicial ukases.

    nk (dbc370)

  49. 1) what makes traditional marriage more critical to upholding social bonds than, simply, marriage?

    2) So your argument that there are identifiable harms that support discrimination is to insult gay people by calling them names? You’re not even trying, are you?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  50. Who said the reason for traditional marriage is that it’s critical to upholding social bonds? If you make up the rules, you win. I say the rule is that society has the right to say “Society needs gay marriage like a fish needs a bicycle”. I win.

    I was not calling gay people names, I was making a point. Oliver Wendell Holmes actually did call the mentally handicapped “imbeciles” in Buck v. Bell.

    My argument is not against gay marriage, it’s against judicial fascism.

    nk (dbc370)

  51. Ah, but if the legislatures of the states have the authority to decide what is or isn’t equal protection of the laws, then the fourteenth amendment is meaningless.

    aphrael (af3e66)

  52. I’m no lawyer, as everyone knows.
    A] Does it make much difference, anymore, on a nuts and bolts the way things work perspective, what the Constitution and the Amendments say, that “they” have made up stuff as they liked for a long time now? And while one can argue what the original intent was, which in some ways is definitely important, if the current political process doesn’t care, then I’m not sure what one is to think.

    B] I’ve heard speculation on why various people on the court didn’t want to rule on this, including:
    1) The conservatives didn’t want to touch it for fear they would lose with the current court make-up
    2) The conservatives didn’t want to touch it at last until there were split Appeals court decisions to decide between
    3) The libs hope that by not making a single Supreme Court ruling like Roe v. Wade a focus of attention, the public debate will not persist as it has with abortion

    C] FWIW, I don’t consider Sam a “troll”, but maybe I didn’t pay enough attention. I never found him trollish before.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  53. The 800 lb gorilla in the room,
    IMO, SSM is not at all about equal protection under the law,
    it is about using the law to change the meaning of language (not just English),
    and morality.

    When you affirm the right of people to act in accordance with their sincerely held religious belief that a marriage is between a man and a woman, and that the state has no compelling reason to say otherwise,
    then I will believe it is simply about a same-sex couple wanting the same legal privileges in regards to taxes, inheritance, etc., etc.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  54. No, the legislatures don’t get to say what is or isn’t equal protection of the laws. But that’s not the question. The question is does “equal protection of the law” cover gay marriage? Answer 1: It has to, because there is a law for everything, and there being no other law that’s closer it’s got to be this one. Answer 2: No, there’s no law that covers it, we need a new law.

    nk (dbc370)

  55. nk

    1) the privileged position point responded to somebody above you.
    2)Actually yes, you did use common insults for gays, as an example of the type of argument Posner would use. If Posner, I suppose, disliked gay people.

    MD – Marriage is, among other things, a term used in statute to create a legal status recognized by the government. The courts have a perfect right to reach decisions about what marriage means in that context, regardless of what some church calls it. The Constitution refers to the equal protection of the laws, not the preservation of dictionary definitions.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  56. the institution, preexisted statute, the law recognized the importance of the institution, the law respects nothing, but it’s own authority now,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  57. Two things:

    A) People in some parts of the world today literally faced death for confessing to being a Christian,
    so in one way having to pay a fine because one refused to make a wedding cake is no big deal.
    Losing your business is a bigger deal, but still not the same.

    The biggest loser in this will be the person who has same sex attraction as a thought pattern but doesn’t want it, because they think it is wrong.
    If the person is told that his/her problem is actually thinking that there is a problem, and that any professional who offers help will have their license revoked,
    then that would be unfair and unjust and against equal protection.

    B) In some ways this could go under the Muslim-related post, but it is more about the West in general and not just with regards to Islam.
    besides, that thread has gotten a bit buried.
    On the decline of the West, from the perspective of a one time young revolutionary in the train of Ayatollah Khomeini (the one back in ’79):
    http://danielshayesteh.blogspot.com.au/

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  58. New York’s “new law” took effect on July 24, 2011. Illinois’s this past June. Just in case you didn’t know. 😉

    BTW, my daughter and her mother are in New York for the weekend. Please drive extra carefully, and be especially watchful for twelve-year old girls in your line of fire when you’re shooting a mugger.

    nk (dbc370)

  59. 1) what narciso said
    2) The law is an ass (donkey, that is) http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/the-law-is-an-ass.html
    3) If lawyers and politicians wish to hijack words that existed long before the origin of their most recent Constitution to mean what they want,
    they are being a bit full of themselves

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  60. Another party (8e12a4) — 10/10/2014 @ 5:04 pm

    Do I take by your silence on the point that you agree it is an attempt to change the common understanding of morality by legal maneuver?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  61. There really was a law like that. If a married woman murdered a person in the presence of her husband, they hanged the husband.

    nk (dbc370)

  62. NK – but my point is, a court *has* to be the one to make the decision between answer #1 and answer #2, and them picking a particular answer isn’t per se judicial tyranny.

    It’s one thing to say, hey, they got it wrong. But the assertion of illegitimacy depends on them not having the authority to make the decision – and it’s unclear to me who else would.

    Unless you’re arguing that you have the one true definition of equal protection and anyone else is per se illegitimate if they disagree with you.

    aphrael (af3e66)

  63. About that “key institution, critical to the entire structure of society…”

    Selina Norris Gray, the daughter of Leonard and Sally Norris, was a second-generation Arlington slave. Selina Norris and Thornton Gray were married by an Episcopal clergyman in the same room of the house where Mary Custis had married Robert E. Lee in 1831. While the church recognized the marriage, the union of slaves was not legally binding. Slaves, as property, could not enter into legally binding contracts. Selina and Thornton would have eight children and raised their family in a single room in the South Slave Quarters.
    Selina was the personal maid of Mrs. Robert E. Lee and the two enjoyed a very close relationship. In 1861, under the threat of union occupation, the Lee family evacuated Arlington and Mrs. Lee left the household keys, symbolizing authority, responsibility and her trust to Selina Gray. Locked away inside Arlington House were many of the “Washington Treasures.” These pieces were cherished family heirlooms that had once belonged to Mrs. Lee’s great-grandmother, Martha Custis Washington, and President George Washington.

    The United States Army assumed control of the Arlington Estate on May 24,1861. Later, U.S. Army officers occupied the house. When Mrs. Gray discovered some of the treasures had been stolen, she confronted the soldiers and ordered them “not to touch any of Mrs. Lee’s things.” Gray alerted General Irvin McDowell, commander of the United States troops, to the importance of the Washington heirlooms. The remaining pieces were sent to the Patent Office for safekeeping. Through Selina Gray’s efforts, many of the Washington pieces were saved for posterity.

    http://www.nps.gov/arho/historyculture/gray.htm

    elissa (b69310)

  64. Unless you’re arguing that you have the one true definition of equal protection and anyone else is per se illegitimate if they disagree with you.

    Again, you’re defining the argument, and if I took it on directly I’d lose. The rules of construction of Constitutional provisions are not made by me. They exist through long series of precedents. When judges don’t follow them, their interpretations are illegitimate.

    nk (dbc370)

  65. Or, in other words, judges do not, strictly speaking, have the authority to pick either Answer 1 or 2. They have the duty to pick the answer the law obliges them to pick.

    nk (dbc370)

  66. I have defended a mandatory minimum case where the judge said he would have imposed a six-month jail sentence but the law obligated him to impose a six-year jail sentence. There was another judge who would find the defendant guilty of a lesser included, despite the evidence that he was guilty of the charged offense, to avoid the mandatory minimum. He was disbarred. (Disrobed?)

    nk (dbc370)

  67. If a married woman murdered a person in the presence of her husband, they hanged the husband.

    Anybody else wonder how that would have worked if they had gay marriage in 1870?

    nk (dbc370)

  68. Md – No, actually I was out shopping.

    And do I agree that a court, faced with the question of how a state’s marriage laws effect a couple in front of him “hijacks” the meaning of marriage by insisting it apply with the same effect to this couple as another, in the absence of a good reason not to? No I don’t. Again marriage as a government recognized institution must obey the rules of any government recognized institution – fair treatment. it’s too late to suddenly insist that government get out of the marriage business altogether once the discrimination is pointed out.

    Really you are arguing through innuendo. “hijack” is not an argument. Explain to me why federal judges should simply ignore the words of the 14th amendment when marriage laws come before them? They did not do it in the Loving case.

    You only have a few arguments, really. Leviticus, gay sex is icky, Webster wrote a dictionary once, it’s all a slippery slope to a swamp of polygamy and straight people need marriage because they are so irresponsible.

    Courts can’t use the the first two reasons, the third is of little significance, the 4th is something for a court facing a polygamous couple to worry about the and 5th has been repeatedly laughed out of court.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  69. Oh I forgot argument six. Think about the children! Though the only children actually at risk are the children of gay parents whose life would be better if their parents could get married. No one could ever point to the children of straight parents in harms way, as noted by the flaming liberal Democrat and near communist Judge Posner.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  70. Loving did not involve behavior. Only skin tone and hair texture. And a Civil War had been fought, and 500,000 people had died, to free black people. Not so that Abraham Lincoln could marry Edwin Stanton.

    nk (dbc370)

  71. america is more better with gay marriagings than it was without them

    and seeing america treat gay people equally is

    it’s just

    it’s just nice to see America doing right by people

    good job you guys

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  72. You are making the assumption and claim that any two people are equal to a man and a woman.
    A gay man can marry a woman just like a straight man can, etc.
    You may think that is a frivolous argument, but even making it equivalent to race for the sake of an argument (a claim which I do not admit), a black man is allowed to do anything a white man can, not necessarily that a white woman can.

    Prior to recent years, would any lawyer or legislator claim that “marriage” as defined in statute meant any two people? If no, then under your own argument there is no reason for a court to change the meaning of a term in a statute,
    at least that is my non-lawyer reasoning.

    The burden of proof is on the pro-SSM side. Human history over time and throughout cultures has never made heterosexual marriage and homosexual relationships equal and equivalent. To blithely assume it is obvious that they all made a mistake and we (i.e., the minority who say so) know better now is a bit of arrogance.

    besides, you have still ignored my point about using the law to impose a new moral code, focusing on “the law can do what the law can do”, and what does the rest of reality have to do with it.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  73. feets, your logic is at about the same level as your vocabulary, “it is so because I say so”.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  74. yeah i don’t know where you’re going there

    I’m perfectly happy with the direction of things as far as gay marriage goes

    and it’s really good news Team R won’t have this on their plate much longer

    this is one of those issues that

    let’s say it doesn’t play to their strengths

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  75. aphrael,

    I asked my earlier questions because I’m trying to understand what makes some people single-issue voters, especially when it comes to social issues, because it’s hard for me to ever imagine voting for a candidate based on one issue. I could analogize it to union members who vote for a candidate solely because s/he supports unions, and they perceive that would help protect their jobs. Voting based on self-interest is understandable, and maybe most people vote that way, but it’s not how I vote in national elections. My biggest concern for America is that both Democrats and Beltway Republicans seem to believe people should always vote based on what’s in it for them.

    I vote based on self-interest in local elections, where the issues typically involve decisions that directly affect me and my community. But I can’t remember voting in any national election based on a single issue or based on what would help me personally. In fact, I voted for Ronald Reagan — a candidate that I believed would hurt my family’s economic interests — because I thought he was the best choice for America. I support candidates who stand for limited government because I think they will help make America better and stronger for everyone, not just for me.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  76. feets, though humans try to redefine morality and even the laws of nature for another trillion years,
    God in Heaven laughs at such arrogance.
    And it makes no difference if they are D’s or R’s or X, Y, or Z’s.

    Yet even so, He weeps for those who refuse to turn to Him in humility and be saved.
    It is not about heterosexuals being better than homosexuals, it is about all being sinners who need to acknowledge their plight and need of God’s mercy.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  77. Scalia saw the future very clear in the Lawrence dissent, in a few more years, the Overton window will be moved yet again, and the same persons will say what is the big deal

    narciso (ee1f88)

  78. happyfeet has picked his side.

    Gays have too. If you’re not with them, you’re against them. They will support each other, and their agenda, absolutely. They will only accept concessions, they will not grant any back.

    I say this with beyond a reasonable doubt moral certainty: If commenter “another party” had been an immigration officer in 1934, and both Albert Einstein and Ernst Rohm (head of the Brownshirts) applied for the last visa allocated to German immigrants, he would have given it to Ernst Rohm because Ernst Rohm was a homosexual.

    nk (dbc370)

  79. nk – Living is an example of the court measuring marriage laws against the standards of the 14th Amendment, demonstrating that regardless of the 10th amendment or whatever else you want to throw in, state marriage laws must like other laws obey the requirements of equal protection. Sure skin color was the issue then. Genitals is the issue now.

    As for the civil war, I like to give credit to the Reconstruction congress for using general language with the understanding that general words, like “equal” would be used in situations in the future they did not contemplate. Or, again, why does legislative intent in a narrow sense of these long dead senators count more now, than the intent of a Congress four years ago about health insurance exchanges?

    MD- your claim that a gay man can marry somebody he doesn’t want to marry and therefore he is on an equal basis with a straight man who can marry somebody he wants to doesn’t pass the straight face test. If the laws were reversed, would straight people feel there was nothing wrong in a world in which they could only marry the same gender? Do you really feel that wouldn’t be discriminatory?

    Marriage defined by statute must be consistent with constitutional requirements. Actually, up to the 90’s it was common for marriage statutes not to specify gender. it’s only when straights started to panic about gay marriage for the laws to suddenly make it clear, demonstrating pretty clearly the reason for the laws.

    And the argument from tradition is getting kind of old now. People have been pointing out the inconsistency of only allowing opposite sex marriage since the 70’s more than 40 years or so.

    As for the burden of proof – well the the plaintiff need to walk into court and show that the law treats them differently than a similarly situated straight couple. They did so. Now it’s your burden to show a good reason for doing so. And you can’t, or won’t.

    Really your argument comes down, repeatedly, to the idea that that’s the way it’s always been and therefore that’s the way it should always be. But the constitution is not set up to preserve that which you find comfortable and familiar, but to set out certain principles regarding how citizens should be treated in this country. A true Constitutional Conservative, should be in favor of that kind of thing.

    As for imposing a moral code – well if the principle of equal protection under the law is an implementation of morality then, sure. I just don’t see why that should cause such consternation.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  80. Sorry, but forgot to throw in a great quote from Oliver Wendell Holmes, an old dead white man:

    “It is revolting to have no better reason for a rule of law than that so it was laid down in the time of Henry IV. It is still more revolting if the grounds upon which it was laid down have vanished long since, and the rule simply persists from blind imitation of the past.”

    Another party (8e12a4)

  81. look the right thing to do is to treat people like they’re equal and in this case it’s super easy cause it doesn’t cost anybody anything

    most of the people who get upset about it are super-old anyway

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  82. Another party,

    With Oliver Wendell Holmes as your guide, I see why you’re a moral skeptic.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  83. The argument is not about genitals, it is about chosen behavior with those genitals.

    People have been pointing out the inconsistency of only allowing opposite sex marriage since the 70′s more than 40 years or so.
    You think 40 years is a long time?
    People have been making the claim that sexual activity within a same sex couple and a heterosexual couple is the same for over 2 thousand years. It was an old issue for the first century.

    Here is the “Solomonic” question:
    If “equal protection under the law” is the final arbiter,
    how is it equal protection guaranteed between
    those who believe that SSM is fully equivalent to heterosexual marriage,
    and those who believe that they are not equivalent?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  84. Thanks for that link, DRJ.
    I believe our host has said some things in the past that reflect a disagreement that Holmes was the best lawgiver since Moses (and for some even better).
    From your link:
    Others talked about sterilizing “imbeciles” while Holmes advocated executing unfit babies.
    Hey, Peter Singer must be right, they’ve been talking about it for 100 years now.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  85. nk and DRJ make the most important points. Judicial fiat is a bad idea; it doesn’t matter if you agree with their overriding voters. This makes two things clear: SCOTUS is more important than anything else right now…so make sure we don’t get more social engineers. The other is that if it is okay with this, the people saying so MUST be just fine with fiat decisions with which they do not agree.

    No fair being a hypocrite, like our POTUS.

    DRJ is also right about single issue voting. It’s not smart. Not at all. And it plays into authoritarian interests, big time. People seem almost willfully blind, and smug.

    I honestly think most of this isn’t about the issue. It’s about the person making the argument feeling superior. Watching people sprain their shoulders patting themselves on the back for being clever is really sort of sad.

    Especially as they let their freedoms leak away.

    Simon Jester (7e21ec)

  86. people make those distinctions all the time Mr. Dr.

    i know my friend R’s marriage is sad and stupid

    I know my friend T’s marriage is super-cool

    their marriages are not equal

    one is a great blessing

    one is a terrible injustice only somewhat ameliorated by large quantities of scotch

    ob la di and et cetera

    ob la di

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  87. Holmes reached a remarkably stupid decision in Bell. That doesn’t detract from his reasoning in other areas. Or are you one who finds his free speech opinions also suspect?

    As for equal protection between differing believers – well actually there is. you have the right to believe that gay people shouldn’t receive equal protection of the laws and I have the right to believe they do.

    But you , and the state, don’t have the right to interpret the laws to actually treat them differently unless you can show a good reason and so far you and others here have only really said one reason – because that’s the way it’s always been. And that’s not a good reason for continuing present injustice.

    I’ll be away for an hour or so in case you jump to the conclusion my silence during that time equals agreement.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  88. Sorry, but forgot to throw in a great quote from Oliver Wendell Holmes, an old dead white man:

    “It is revolting to have no better reason for a rule of law than that so it was laid down in the time of Henry IV. It is still more revolting if the grounds upon which it was laid down have vanished long since, and the rule simply persists from blind imitation of the past.”

    Then he contradicted his own writings: “The life of the law has not been philosophy, it has been experience.” Or is your quote the Sermon on the Mount and mine an obscure passage in Romans?

    nk (dbc370)

  89. In Schenk v. U.S. he upheld imprisonment for advising people to evade the draft. Is that the free speech case you admire him for? Maybe it wasn’t speech, because it was on printed leaflets?

    nk (dbc370)

  90. Another party:

    … you have the right to believe that gay people shouldn’t receive equal protection of the laws and I have the right to believe they do.

    Do you still beat your wife?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  91. feets, your logic is at about the same level as your vocabulary, “it is so because I say so”.

    He’s an interesting case study in the cognitive dissonance of people (which is a nice way of saying two-faced), who try to sound and react one way in public, but behave another way in private. In this case, such people being very indignant towards those who are against same-sex marriages (and presumably mere GLBT relationships too), yet often ridiculing or mocking the concept of “gay.”

    I speak on occasion with a flaming liberal (versus a flaming homosexual) who sees red when conservative/Republican politicians, groups and policies are being dealt with or discussed. He noted approvingly several weeks ago that a new Chick-a-fil restaurant was being informally boycotted by people opposed to that company’s association with opposition to SSM. Yet this dyed-in-the-wool liberal often smirks about emasculated aspects of males and the increasingly feminized nature (eg, “metrosexuals”) of our culture.

    The phony-baloney nature of a large percentage of liberals is always a sight to behold (and feel disgust towards).

    Mark (c160ec)

  92. my logics are strong, but merciful

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  93. “Another party” used to be Northerner – new name, same vapid mendoucheous style of name-calling and discussion. He and Gil shoe their arse on this topic, repeatedly.

    JD (1a76f9)

  94. My initial statement and your response

    53.The 800 lb gorilla in the room,
    IMO, SSM is not at all about equal protection under the law,
    it is about using the law to change the meaning of language (not just English), and morality.
    MD in Philly (f9371b) — 10/10/2014 @ 4:57 pm

    MD – Marriage is, among other things, a term used in statute to create a legal status recognized by the government. The courts have a perfect right to reach decisions about what marriage means in that context, regardless of what some church calls it. The Constitution refers to the equal protection of the laws, not the preservation of dictionary definitions.
    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/10/2014 @ 5:04 pm

    My comment, based on the obvious fact that you had responded to one of my two original points, and your retort:

    besides, you have still ignored my point about using the law to impose a new moral code, focusing on “the law can do what the law can do”, and what does the rest of reality have to do with it.
    MD in Philly (f9371b) — 10/10/2014 @ 6:26 pm

    68.Md – No, actually I was out shopping….
    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/10/2014 @ 5:57 pm

    Your last comment:
    I’ll be away for an hour or so in case you jump to the conclusion my silence during that time equals agreement.
    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/10/2014 @ 7:00 pm

    My reply to you about your being silent was regarding not that you later went shopping and were not around to reply, but that in my original post I made two claims, and you replied to one, and only one. I pointed that out to invite a response to my second claim.
    My conclusion, from what you have said, is that for you there really is nothing of a moral issue in sexuality involved here.
    That is all that needs to be said. You have answered. You have made the claim that equal protection of disparate behavior trumps equal protection of religious conviction. You do not want SS couples to be “left alone” and have the same privileges of law as has been traditional to marriage,
    you want society to accept the premise that SSM is equivalent to heterosexual marriage, and if one does not agree, keep it to yourself, for if you try to act on that in the public square you will be trumped by the law.

    That is a fine position to have, why didn’t you just come out and say so?
    Is it because you know that the public has been willing to accept SSM under the guise of “let them do what they want”, not with the understanding that “we now have to approve”?

    My claims have been based on more than “we have always done it that way”. But it fits. DRJ’s link makes the claim that Holmes was a prominent figure in throwing away the idea of “Natural Law”, and you are simply discounting and ignoring the part of my argument that is essentially based on “Natural Law”, that much of what is true in the universe is quite self evident upon observation.

    The take home question is this:
    are you correct?
    or
    are you following in the tradition of those who willfully deny what is obvious to the impartial observer?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  95. Well, I have been edumacted by DRJ’s link,
    and thanks for the “heads up”, JD
    but in one way I was never in a serious discussion with “Another party”, as I knew he/she wasn’t interested in what I had to say, I just wanted to draw him/her out to clarify the reasoning so any undecided observers could see.

    As my previous link pointed out, the fundamental good will and allowance for personal freedom of Judeo-Christian society (when it is living up to its best manifestation) is sympathetic to the cry of “let them be”, without realizing that “let them be” is not the aim. The citizens of this world, and follower’s of Alinsky’s patron spirit, are craftier than some of more benevolent natures.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  96. MD – let them be is one of their subtle lies. How that manifests itself is in their forcing others to accept and approve.

    JD (1a76f9)

  97. 1) I don’t see the contradiction of the two quotes. As regards Henry IV, he pointed out the problem of simply following the past because that’s the way things always happen. The experience of people under a rule is part of determining whether a past rule is worth following. The experience of gay people, particularly in the last 40 years or so when they have been able to live openly as gay people shows that excluding them from marriage makes no sense, to the extent it ever did.

    2) As for free speech opinions I was referring to the ones after Schenk, when Holmes changed his mind on reflection, e.g. Gitlow.

    3) I am not sure I understand your comment about wife beating. Could you elaborate? I made my
    comment in response to your view that somehow it was a violation of equal protection, or rights of conscience, if people who thought gay marriage was invalid were no longer in a position to prohibit gay marriage.

    4) yes I used to Northerner. I thought the label probably misleading. I think conservative opposition to SSM is very interesting as an example of illogic pursued vigorously and that is why I comment here on that point.

    5)Sorry that I misunderstood the one line reference to morality as an argument. AS for equal protection of religious conviction, I will need more help from you to understand the point you are getting at.

    The state is not supposed to be a religious organization enforcing a religious point of view. Your adherence to a religious understanding of marriage is your private affair. But the state should not be enforcing it on your behalf but using a neutral understanding that is consistent with the Constitution. The Constitution requires equal protection of the law which has been reasonably interpreted to mean that disparate treatment of groups under the law requires some kind of justification.

    You, still, do not indicate what you see as the type of justification that the state should accept as a reason to maintain laws that treat gay couples differently from straight couples. As far as I can tell at this point, your basis is Natural Law and tradition and a dictionary definition. If this keeps you content, fine. But I am surprised you think that these principles should guide judges.

    After all, if I have read this blog correctly over the months, activist judges who impose their own view of things is anathema. What could be a greater invitation to discretion than a judge who relies on Natural Law?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  98. MD,

    Actually I am interested in what you have to say. I will be discussing the issue of SSM with other people soon, some of who probably are sympathetic to your point of view. I was curious what kind of arguments I would be facing and yours seem to be representative of the conservative point of view.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  99. Well, all the best, Another party.

    nk (dbc370)

  100. Another party-
    Perhaps you didn’t read my last post, or I did not make myself clear. I have said all I need to say, and IMO you have said enough to make your position clear.
    Now people get to make their choice.
    http://www.ccel.org/d/dostoevsky/karamozov/htm/book12/chapter10.html
    better, starting at page 1526:
    http://www.planetpdf.com/planetpdf/pdfs/free_ebooks/The_Brothers_Karamazov_NT.pdf

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  101. Another party:

    I am not sure I understand your comment about wife beating. Could you elaborate? I made my comment in response to your view that somehow it was a violation of equal protection, or rights of conscience, if people who thought gay marriage was invalid were no longer in a position to prohibit gay marriage.

    I don’t recall making any statement on the legality of gay marriage, and I don’t have an opinion on whether it’s a violation of equal protection laws. Perhaps you’ve confused me with another commenter.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  102. Another party,

    As for my wife-beating response, I quoted a statement you made that assumes opposition to SSM is a violation of equal protection. When you assume what you’re trying to prove, that is known as “begging the question.” It’s not exactly the same as a loaded question — such as “When did you stop beating your wife?” — but it’s close.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  103. Md
    No you did not make yourself clear. You said:

    “You do not want SS couples to be “left alone” and have the same privileges of law as has been traditional to marriage,
    you want society to accept the premise that SSM is equivalent to heterosexual marriage, and if one does not agree, keep it to yourself, for if you try to act on that in the public square you will be trumped by the law.”

    Actually, no, I would like the law to provide gay couples with the same privileges of law as straight couples – to marry the unrelated adult person they want to. You are perfectly free to disagree, as long you don’t also commandeer the state to deny these couples that right.

    Now you then diverge into an argument about the public square – which is apparently a concern about anti-discrimination laws that limit the rights of people to act on their beliefs regarding the inferiority of some people or some groups in areas like public accomodations, restaurants, housing and baking cakes.

    If you wish to overturn such laws, or explain why they are fine to prevent discrimination on the basis of race but problematic to prevent discrimination on the basis of gender orientation, go ahead.

    But how does that apply to the prior question of whether gay couples should be able to get married in the first place? Why not let them get married and then pass laws letting you not bake them cakes? Is the fear of being forced into unwanted cake baking grounds for their weddings sufficient basis for not letting them get married in the first place?

    So no, I don’t understand your argument. Your fear of religious persecution from anti-discrimination laws or being criticized for illiberal opinions does not trump the right of gay couples to walk up to a license office, run by the state, and be treated equally to other couples also at the office that day.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  104. DRJ – Where did I say that opposition to SSM is a violation of equal protection? I did reference an earlier commentator who said:

    “If “equal protection under the law” is the final arbiter,
    how is it equal protection guaranteed between
    those who believe that SSM is fully equivalent to heterosexual marriage,
    and those who believe that they are not equivalent?”

    My point is that these two groups do enjoy the equal protection of the laws. They can each believe what they want to believe. But those believe against SSM will still need to show some reason why the state can treat gay couples differently when it comes to applying for marriage licenses.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  105. Jd:

    “vapid mendoucheous style of name-calling and discussion” Ah, you cut me to the quick. Have I called anybody here a name, like “douche”, for example?

    As for vapid, I guess we are all entitled to an opinion but I would be interested if you could point out anything in particular I have said that strikes you as particularly vapid.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  106. Poor “another party” is fighting waaayy out of one’s league.

    felipe (40f0f0)

  107. many of the concerns are noted here:

    http://worldcongress.org/wcf4.spkrs/wcf4.bull.htm

    narciso (ee1f88)

  108. Oh, it is all garden variety vapid.

    felipe (40f0f0)

  109. It’s been a pretty good thread, actually. Having DRJ around is like the feeling I have for my new Washita medium sharpening stone in a cedar box that I got a week ago and haven’t used yet because it’s so pretty and I don’t want to put scratches and oil stains on it.

    nk (dbc370)

  110. JD, it is very important that you take my comment #109 at 8:37 pm out of moderation. You’ll know why when you see it. Please.

    nk (dbc370)

  111. Dang the stupid spam filter! Dang it, dang it, dang it!

    nk (dbc370)

  112. Let’s see if Washita is the problem.

    nk (dbc370)

  113. It’s been a pretty good thread, actually. Having DRJ around is like the feeling I have for my new sharpening stone in a cedar box that I got a week ago and haven’t used yet because it’s so pretty and I don’t want to put scratches and oil stains on it.

    nk (dbc370)

  114. All cool, JD.

    nk (dbc370)

  115. Another party:

    DRJ – Where did I say that opposition to SSM is a violation of equal protection?

    This is what you said in comment 87:

    As for equal protection between differing believers – well actually there is. you have the right to believe that gay people shouldn’t receive equal protection of the laws and I have the right to believe they do.

    In your last sentence, aren’t you assuming that opposition to SSM is a violation of equal protection laws? My guess is that since you don’t see any reason to oppose SSM other than discrimination, then you believe it must be an equal protection violation.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  116. nk,

    You know I like it when you talk pretty like that.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  117. “Washita” has a bad word inside it somewhere, nk.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  118. Felipe,

    Your comment intrigues me. Which of my arguments fails to meet your high standards?

    Narciso,

    I looked over the article you cited. The points made are familiar ones, and have been addressed in most of the recent federal court opinions:

    e.g. “marriage is better for children when between opposite sex couples.” No, there is not study that shows this, at least in comparison to children born of committed gay couples. And in any case, as I think Posner pointed out, it’s logically irrelevant to the issue of SSM. No one is arguing for taking children away from straight couples and handing them to gay couples. The question is are children of gay parents better off, or worse, if their parents can get married. And the answer is pretty clearly better.

    or “SSM marriage will lead to devaluing marriage”. Again, hard to see the logic. Gay couples want to get married, not sort of married or civil union married. They are the ones putting value on the institution. How does a prolonged, sincere, widespread effort to get married devalue marriage? Who in Massachusetts, after 10 years of SSM, stands up and says my straight marriage feels devalued because the gay couple down the street got married?

    or SSM leads to religious persecution. here the argument is with anti discrimination laws. If the problem is the inability to discriminate against gays in the public square means religious persecution than your argument is with those laws, not SSM

    Another party (8e12a4)

  119. DRJ

    I am sorry I wasn’t more clear. I said you and anybody have the right to believe anything you want about SSM. I am not arguing that opposition to SSM constitutes a violation of equal protection. I am puzzled how you get that out of my sentence.

    Again I was responding to this statement:

    “If “equal protection under the law” is the final arbiter,
    how is it equal protection guaranteed between
    those who believe that SSM is fully equivalent to heterosexual marriage,
    and those who believe that they are not equivalent?”

    My point, again, is that equal protection is guaranteed. They both are equally protected in being able to state their beliefs. But believing SSM is wrong is different from the state denying SSM to gay couples. That latter is an exercise of state power and thus controlled by the Constitution which requires the state to treat the gay couples equally,.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  120. Thank you, Patterico.

    nk (dbc370)

  121. Let me try to say it this way: You assume equal protection laws can only be interpreted one way — to legalize SSM. You are either failing or refusing to see any contrary argument, which makes me think you are assuming what you should be trying to prove.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  122. the argument is that marriage is devalued if gay people do it cause they’re all gay and stuff

    i think the obvious flaw in this argument is same as how it goes with the deep dish pizza sometimes

    deep dish pizza is often very very over-rated, but when you get a really good one it’s like damn that’s good pizza

    but just cause sometimes the deep dish pizza is lame and even sometimes unhealthy doesn’t mean we should ban it

    the pizza can’t help how it was made

    no h8

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  123. DRJ- I am excited to know that my daughter’s school has begun a course in the study of logical fallacies and such,
    one problem with that is there is no lesson on how to have a logical conversation with someone who refuses to acknowledge the fallacies when present.

    But it does allow a person to answer the question, “Is it me, or this person not getting it?”

    Interesting link, narciso, but since it is not written by an enlightened person who knows the right answer, which is that protection of SSM is a priori an overpowering equal protection issue as demanded by one interpretation of law,
    nothing else matters.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  124. no h8

    So who’s buying pink triangles and barbed wire, happyfeet?

    nk (dbc370)

  125. Good night all,
    carry on!

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  126. DRJ

    It’s true that I think legalizing SSM is the best interpretation of equal protection laws. It is consistent with past precedent with respect to how the court should treat laws that distinguish between groups of people on the basis of characteristics that are irrelevant to a valid public policy goal, and which have been the basis for historic discrimination.

    I think the evidence is pretty good that gender similarity is not relevant to any valid policy goal with respect to marriage, (given how marriage laws currently treat infertile couples among other reasons)

    I also think there is pretty good evidence that gays have been historically discriminated against.

    So, sure, I think this is the best argument, like I think evolution is the best explanation for the history of life on the planet and the current profusion of species.

    But I make no claims there are not opposing arguments. I just don’t see particularly good ones made. As noted above, the arguments I do see made are based on the bible, animus towards gay people, sticking to tradition because it’s tradition, Natural Law, invalid claims about the ability of gay parents to parent, or some combination of the above. Oh, also, fear of being shunned for being against SSM.

    None of which look like valid arguments to me for a state to discriminate. But if you want to pick one up and go with it, or have some other reason, I am still interested in confronting the argument.

    I think reason can work here and would like to keep trying.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  127. to that end, the APA changed it’s criteria, researchers like Regnerus get hounded for inconvenient truths, the link illustrates where we are going, and curiously who is not affected by these trends,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  128. None of which look like valid arguments to me for a state to discriminate. But if you want to pick one up and go with it, or have some other reason, I am still interested in confronting the argument.

    No, you don’t. You’ll dismiss everything that does not agree with your position, until you find a gay or gay-friendly judge to agree with you. But you did make a good foil for the rest of us to iron out our views.

    nk (dbc370)

  129. pink triangles and barbed wire are not america

    it’s like those little bunnies in watership down

    they had to draw on their inner-most deepest reserves of courage and perseverance

    but persevere they did!

    and that is what the matrimonial homosexual people must do

    be the bunny

    and it won’t be long at all before everyone is happy to let them frolic in the meadow

    peacefully, and with quiet dignity

    the seasons will come and go and great empires will rise and great empires will fall

    and even yet the little bunnies will persevere

    cause they’re goddamn americans is why

    just like you and me

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  130. But those believe against SSM will still need to show some reason why the state can treat gay couples differently when it comes to applying for marriage licenses.

    And those who believe same-sex couples should be treated the same way as opposite-sex couples when applying for marriage licenses need to show some reason why (in most cases) a male who wants to be betrothed to 2 or more women should be treated differently.

    Since male nature is innately, intrinsically non-monogamous (just as homosexuality is defined as innate and intrinsic by many people, particularly on the left), and with the growing influence of Islamic/Sharia-law customs in parts of certainly Western Europe, in which polygamy is considered traditional, this is not a slippery-slope, purely hypothetical, how-many-angels-can-dance-on-the-head-of-a-pin question. IOW, multi-partner relationships are no less legitimate and pronounced as same-sex ones.

    Mark (c160ec)

  131. So I take it that we’re not talking about pink triangles and barbed wire h8. Let’s go to the other end. Are we talking, “You didn’t get me a gay marriage for Christmas, you hate me” h8?

    nk (dbc370)

  132. And yet the former mayor of London was good friends with Quradawi, the born again ISIS opponent, who still has this thing about stoning people, the current deputy mayor, was similarly lenient toward the Muntada Trust, the bankrollers of ISIS, do we start noticing a pattern,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  133. whatever kind of h8 we’re talking about, we have to abjure it Mr. nk

    h8 is like the worst thing ever

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  134. Narciso,

    The Regnerus study was discredited by pretty much anybody with a background in statistics who looked at it. Are you claiming that it is fact a valid study of the parenting ability of committed gay couples? How many were in the study?

    nk

    I disagree with arguments that are weak. Taking for example religious objections to SSM, those would be weak in a court of law. As are arguments based on questioning the parenting abilities of gay parents given there are no studies showing committed gay parents are bad parents and, again, the logical irrlevance of such a conclusion to SSM.

    What I notice you and other here doing is concluding I simply dismiss arguments without a reason. I am trying to show I am not. What I also fail to see are people really digging in to explain, e.g., why a court should use Natural Law, or why it should give credit to something like the Regnerus study. Instead they retreat into an aggrieved stance that it’s not worth trying.

    Now Mark, polygamy is an interesting argument. I think you are correct that there are enough people, for one religious or other reasons, who like polyamory, that some will push the into the court someday in a determined way. And when they do they will undoubtedly hunt through Windsor to find support. But

    1) That concern tomorrow is not a reason to deny SSM to gay couples today. if the only argument against gay marriage is that it might not be so bad but we were worried about somebody else trying to do something different tommorrow, then you need a better argument.

    and

    2) when tomorrow comes, and the polyamoros group does come to court then, if I were a judge, I would find the SSM cases inapplicable because there are better reasons to oppose polyamory than to oppose SSM. The former would majorly change current family law, as well as estate law and some aspects fo criminal (e.g. marital privilege) SSM doesn’t.

    But if I were overruled by the other judges so be it. Polyamoros couples get some legal recognition. Not my ideal world, but the fear of it happening sometime is again not a basis for denying gay couples their more justifiable claims today.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  135. Very entertaining, AP.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  136. I would find the SSM cases inapplicable because there are better reasons to oppose polyamory than to oppose SSM… Not my ideal world,

    I find it fascinating that quite a few defenders (if not fans of) SSM often flinch at the idea of multi-partner marriages or even just mere multi-partner relationships. Polygamy actually tracks closer to male nature — and therefore encompasses more of the population — than the social construct of same-sex relationships. So if accommodating people’s needs based on their biological-driven emotions is a big reason that people support SSM, then they really need to take into consideration behavior that leads to voluntary multi-partner arrangements.

    As for the idea that polygamy will somehow be more of a legal headache than what’s true of GLBT-recognized relationships, that’s a case of “big whoop” since part of the judicial system is already doing back flips to accommodate gay couples who segue to straight relationships (or visa versa), or where children end up with 2 mommies and 1 daddy, or 2 daddies and 1 mommy, or mommy’s ex-girlfriend’s female partner must have his/her legal needs met, or daddy’s ex-boyfriend’s male partner who got transsexual surgery must have his/her grievances accepted, and….

    Okay, I’m being sarcastic and flippant, but today’s absurdity has a way of being tomorrow’s reality.

    Mark (c160ec)

  137. burpee seeds grow

    polygamy is not a burpee seed

    it’s low-class and food stampy

    I don’t know why people are so obsessed with it

    the only people what do polygamy? they’re people what don’t matter

    culturally they’re off the grid

    they eat private label mac n cheese products

    they can’t name major high-end brands of cosmetics

    they watch syndicated daytime television shows

    they have a high propensity to engage in activities normal people would regard as incestuous

    they let outside dogs climb on the couch

    they don’t know the difference between “your” and you’re”

    they understand when big daddy gets mad if you accidentally buy grape kool-aid cause dammit woman his favorite is the black cherry

    they sure as hell don’t vote

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  138. Mark,

    1) I don’t know that women are any less inclined to polyamory than men, biologically. It’s hard to find cultures where they were allowed the possibility. More to the point, gay people are not allowed to marry any of the people they want. That’s different, emotionally and culturally, from not being able to marry all the people they want.

    And as for accomodating needs based on bioloical driven emotions, well in the case of SSM the word for that is love, the same emotion that drives straight couples to want to get married. My advocacy for their right to do so is based on an inability to see how their biologically driven emotions are significantly different than straight couples, at least with respect to those reasons why states recognize marriage.

    Now as for those reasons, I do think they are significantly undermined when 2 becomes 3+. You note the situation of stepparrents. Well today, the law generally distinguishes between the rights of biological parents and stepparents, biological/adoptive parents and a close friend of a parent. And you’re right it can get complicated. But if 3, sometimes, is difficult what happens at 5, or 10? And you also underrate the severe complications for divorce, which is often primarily a financial issue. Can any member of the group trigger a divorce, requiring all property to be divided? And there are hundreds of other marriage related rights and responsibilities which again become more problematic when you increase the number of people married. Could one woman marry all the men in a small town in Mexico and make them citizens? Do conflict of interest laws apply to large married groups who all happen to work for once company?

    the legal world is used to dealing with n = 2. When n= 3+ then the question of an upper limit arises. Marriage becomes more and more like a commercial partnership agreement, and then might require new rules as to how the group will deal with shared property.

    Changing forms to spouse and spouse vs. husband and wife is trivial. Changing to polyamory as a legally recognized institution is not. I think a future court would recognize this,.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  139. Maybe I should try to make an honest stone out of my sharpening stone. Neither of us can help our innate characteristics and our relationship is not harmful to society so there is no good reason for the state not to grant us a marriage license. We’re both of legal age; I’m 58 and the stone is as old as the Quachita Mountains of Arkansas. I wonder if Ted Olson would take our case.

    nk (dbc370)

  140. mazel tov!

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  141. That’s different, emotionally and culturally, from not being able to marry all the people they want.

    But that comes very close to being a distinction without a difference, since the history of opposite-sex relationships is loaded down with people getting hitched to the wrong partner and, in turn, missing out on the preferred partner. So claiming that major heartache is somehow a unique province of gays and therefore requires that society change its definition of marriage is no more valid than claiming that since males tend to have wandering eyes, they also need to be validated by society. Your point, however, would have credence if applied to nations (such as Islamic ones) where homosexuals are forbidden from having private relationships with other homosexuals, much less being banned from marriage to one another.

    Marriage becomes more and more like a commercial partnership agreement

    But the only truly understandable (or non-touchy-feely) reason why homosexuals should want to have a judicially-recognized arrangement is for financial and legal reasons. Arrangements where the government formally assigns rights to property and who can visit whom in a hospital. But that already could be done to a great degree before the advent of SSM, certainly with the workings of domestic partnerships. But such a clinical, business-only validation by the government doesn’t ping the hearts (and leftism) of much of the GLBT community.

    Mark (c160ec)

  142. nk,

    The Ouachita Mountain range in Arkansas was formed 250-300 million years ago, but that’s just a baby compared to the age of the Earth and universe: “The Earth is 4.6 billion years old while the universe is somewhere from 10 to 20 billion years old.” I think that makes your stone a minor, so your marriage could be void without parental consent. Maybe Another party can tell you whether that’s discriminatory.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  143. 38. Steve57, if the outcome of the baker case did not in any way turn on gay marriage, then the case is not useful as evidence for or against the claim that gay marriage is about any particular goal.

    aphrael (001863) — 10/10/2014 @ 12:51 pm

    The above is nonsense.

    Yes. There is a goal.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  144. If your objection is that what I provided is not evidence of a specific goal, then I agree. In fact, I never claimed that I was providing evidence of what is commonly assumed to be the goal.

    But that doesn’t mean there is no goal whatsoever.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  145. I would be playing into the hands of the main force of the Alternative Life Styles Liberation Army, which wants to make marriage meaningless altogether. Whose numbers include the parents of the children born out of wedlock in the United States (41%, yes, 41% of all births), and the President of France and his serial First Paramours. They have been mounting the frontal attack on marriage since Marx and Engels published the Communist Manifesto. (Hollande and his first punchboard, Segolene Royal a political powerhouse in her own right, publicly called marriage an outmoded, bourgeois institution, and denied that they were even in a civil union.) The SSM brigades want to settle in the good neighborhood of the Carthage of marriage. (Ostensibly). These others are looking to raze the city to the ground and plow the ruins over with salt.

    nk (dbc370)

  146. I think another party hates science. Man/man, woman/woman, and man/woman are not the same thing.

    JD (1a76f9)

  147. I have said before that people have reasons to do what they do, and that the reasons do have a kind of logic to them, when one considers what presuppositions are assumed.
    I suggest this is a case in point:
    Many of us would reason along these lines and think it is completely self-apparent at first look-
    1) “Marriage” has been defined as a committed (often/mainly exclusive) relationship between a man and a woman across time and across cultures.
    (In cultures that differ, it has been extended to include polygamy, typically (always?) one man having more than one wife. In Western culture this has not been approved of, hence Mormons needing to stop their practice of polygamy if they wanted to become a state of the US.
    2) Saying that the definition of “marriage”, by popular use or in legal terminology is changing the definition.
    3) The reason for this is essentially “because that is what we want”. (Is there another reason that I am missing?) The claim that it is logically and simply equal protection under law begs the question and assumes that a relationship between two people of the same sex is equivalent to a relationship between two people of opposite sexes.
    4) If the definition of marriage is changed because one group wants to change it, there is no logical reason why other changes should not be allowed as well.

    Apparently the SSM proponent’s answer to #4 is, “but it’s still two people, so it doesn’t mean that others can change it again”.
    I believe this again is begging the question, making equivalent a relationship between two people of the same sex and two people of different sexes.
    Especially if the argument is “people ought to be able to marry who they love”. Again, it is begging the question, if you want to change what “marriage” is for that reason, why can’t it be changed to something else if a group of 3 all want to marry the other 2 that they love?

    Now, if one wants to claim that society often changes how they use words and what they consider a norm to be, fine, but the argument for SSM has not been that society sees it that way, but that there is existing law that should make it so.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  148. 38.Steve57, if the outcome of the baker case did not in any way turn on gay marriage, then the case is not useful as evidence for or against the claim that gay marriage is about any particular goal.
    aphrael (001863) — 10/10/2014 @ 12:51 pm

    aphrael, we are going over old ground, but since you bring up your argument to refresh our thinking, I will bring up mine as well.
    I think focusing on the fine point to say that since this and similar cases were based on non-discrimination law is missing the larger picture. Whether you understand this charge (though do not agree with it) or are oblivious to it I cannot read your mind.
    You even word it well with lawyerly legalese, often designed to obfuscate, not clarify (whether you mean to do so, again, I do not know). My non-lawyer speech would be inclined to try to make the point saying, “It had nothing to do SSM”, which I would take issue with. You, however, make the fine technical point of saying “the case did not turn on gay marriage”, which in specific application is true.

    I would suggest that the inclusion of sexual orientation in anti-discrimination law was simply an initial step in the “agenda”, to codify in law the claim that homosexuality and heterosexuality are equivalent. It was perhaps a strategic move, knowing that even many people who did not think homosexuality equivalent were happy with the idea that gay people were not picked on for being gay (which I do agree with as well).
    But one person’s rights end where another’s begin. If you took a poll of people who were OK with the idea that gays should not be picked on whether or not that meant that people should be made to celebrate homosexual activity against their consciences by baking wedding cakes or hosting gay weddings, I think the majority would often say “No”.

    So, in a narrow sense, you are correct in saying that the legal rulings were not based on SSM. But in the larger sense there are two ways SSM is definitely involved:
    1) it was the legalization of SSM that gave rise to a new claim for discrimination which had not previously existed
    2) the “agenda” in the broader application of anti-discrimination law is the same as the move to legalize SSM, to “normalize” the morality and public perception of homosexuality by force of law, no longer giving individuals the freedom to act on what they believe about it. A claim to “freedom of thought” without freedom of expression is meaningless.
    If you want to make the claim, that my objection is equivalent to saying to you, “You have freedom to think homosexual attraction is the same as hetero, but you cannot act in accordance with it”, I would agree in part. Only in part because of an inequality in what is being asked to forfeit. I have not demanded that you refrain from acting like someone with same sex attraction, I have not even asked you to refrain from making a binding legal contract with another person of the same sex. All I have asked of you is the freedom of acting according to my conscience and conviction that homosexuality is not equivalent to heterosexuality. As we discussed before, I also do not approve of a heterosexual couple living together “as a married couple” when they are not, but I do not try to use the force of law to make people change their behavior, I just maintain the right to my moral opinion and voice it as occasion gives rise without concern for legal ramifications..

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  149. Whose numbers include the parents of the children born out of wedlock in the United States (41%, yes, 41% of all births), and the President of France and his serial First Paramours.

    The effect of prevailing standards and/or governmental edicts on human nature is more crucial (and fascinating) to me than merely the issues of constitutional, legal or religious ones.

    For example, before Clinton and Monica entered the scene (and the American lexicon), the thought of a major US political figure (or perhaps even a boss in a typical major office in New York or Seattle) doing what what was done by Bill and his intern would have been considered beyond the pale and unthinkable. Before the late 1990s, the reaction of many Americans to even the hint of that particular scandal was “only a paranoid who promotes vast rightwing conspiracies can believe such things are possible!” Today? Bill is feted by lots of people and his behavior doesn’t raise an eyebrow.

    The Hollywood community in the 1950s, no less (and not religious fundamentalists in the Bible Belt), ostracized a famous actress for having a child out of wedlock. Today? That same community is one step away from practically requiring or demanding that actresses give birth to children outside of marriage.

    SSM’s impact on attitudes will be a variation of what occurs when grade inflation enters the classroom, where the teacher hands out As and Bs to all her students, even the ones deserving no more than Ds or Fs, because self-esteem must be protected at all costs. So when males start calling another guy “husband,” and females start calling another woman “wife” (and both groups are officially sanctioned by the government) that will be similar to the goof-offs and drop-outs in school being able to boast about getting As and Bs on their report card.

    Or if a person’s favorite team wins the Super Bowl, think of how that accomplishment will soon lose some of its gloss and prestige if the NFL were to start bequeathing the championship win to all 32 of its franchises—with the exception of the Washington Redskins, of course, because it has racist tendencies.

    Mark (c160ec)

  150. 145. …The SSM brigades want to settle in the good neighborhood of the Carthage of marriage. (Ostensibly). These others are looking to raze the city to the ground and plow the ruins over with salt.

    nk (dbc370) — 10/11/2014 @ 5:15 am

    My main objection to the project, right there.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  151. As are arguments based on questioning the parenting abilities of gay parents given there are no studies showing committed gay parents are bad parents and, again, the logical irrlevance of such a conclusion to SSM.

    The likelihood of such studies is an order of magnitude less than the publication of studies showing no warming trend in climate “science.” There are simply no journals that want to avoid boycotts and demonstrations willing to publish such work. Intelligent social science researchers have observed the abuse Charles Murray got over “The Bell Curve” and concluded that study of children’s TV programs or some other safe topic is in their own career interests.

    I’m not saying they are “bad parents” but there are questions that will not be studied in this world of reality we have. It is similar to study of sex change operations. Not a safe topic for a career.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  152. ==there are questions that will not be studied in this world of reality we have. ==

    Your post is well stated, Mike K. It is unfortunate, too, because studies to better know the long term effects and trends both negative and positive on children (whether adopted or conceived via a donor) raised in same sex families could serve to clear up a lot of assumptions and accusations on all sides. We also could benefit as a society from more honest scientific studies of the generational effects and policy implications to children of single parent families. But as you point out, the third rails of politics and academia have changed dramatically in recent years, and many Americans prefer to live in the world of Ignorance is Bliss.

    elissa (68e46b)

  153. Mike,

    Actually there are studies of gay parents and their effects on their children. Their main flaw is that they have generally involved limited numbers of couples, which makes it difficult to fully generalize from their conclusions, which is that gay parents are equal or superior to straight parents. But as they accumulate it becomes harder to claim the opposite. Of course there is also Regnerus, who managed to buck the liberal tyranny in science. Of course the problem with Regenerus is that the study is statistically invalid.

    nk – allowing marriages between humans and objects, like stones or trees or pieces of lint, would be a significantly different institution than marriage between two people, which laws implicating marriage already assume. I wish you and your rock well, but to conclude that another human being is just like a rock is silly.

    You also claim that SSM is part of a goal to make marriage meaningless, citing various straight couples who get married lightly. I am surprised you didn’t include Gingrich. But I don’t see how you can look at the thousands of couples lining up for marriage licenses across the country and say they are demeaning marriage. They are valuing marriage. And they are an example to Gingrichs of the world.

    JD – to say man/man is not the same as man/woman is no more useful here than saying short man/woman is not the same as tall man/woman, or algerian/albanian is not the same as Rumanian/Latvian. The question is what difference does the difference make? You seem convinced that matched genitals are significantly different from mixed genitals for purposes of the marriage laws and the state’s interest in marriage. But you don’t explain why.

    MD

    1) you are using passive voice – “has been defined”. It is actually states and cultures and governments who have done the defining for various reasons and in various forms, including polyamory. And of course varied types of relationships in various Indian tribes. (See Berdache

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Two-Spirit

    For at least 40 years the question is raised why should states define it differently for one type of couple than for another, and for about 15 years or so governments around the world have been defining it differently. So the question, today, is why not?

    2-3 Gay couples are saying existing marriage laws should apply to them, and that the limitation on only certain types of couples, excluding them, is unconstitutional as well as wrong for other reasons. If you see this as simply “because we want” discounts the desire of people to be treated as full fledged citizens. To say that making this a question of equal protection begs the question because mixed couples are not the same as straight couples in fact, I would claim, begs the question. You are assuming that their differences are significant for constitutional/legal purposes without explaining why. You simply annoucne the differences are significant ipso facto.

    #4 – my response re Polyamory is noted above. But again equal protection law does say that states can treat groups of people differently if they can provide good reasons. As I noted I think there are better reasons for limiting marriages to two people, than to limit it only to mixed sex couples. If you can explain differently, (i.e. that marriages of 10-15 people are no problem at all, or that same sex couples pose major problems) than do so.

    Also, in your reply to aphrael, you claim only the freedom to act according to your conscience that homosexuality is inferior to heterosexuality. But what you also claim is the right to bar gay couples from getting marriage licenses, which is an actual real problem in their lives, not equivalent to your fear of being scorned for your religious views.

    Adn, Mark – I am not saying that heartache is unique to gays only that they share it with similarly situatied straight couples, who are allowed to follow their biologic desires and marry people, even if they get it wrong. The question is whether the heartache of either gay or straight couples is distinct from the heartaches of groups of three or more who are allowed to marry only one other member of the group and not all. I suspect differently given that humans generally tend to establish intense iintiemate emotional bonds as couples, not groups. But from a legal standpoint I don’t think it is that relevant. Again the question is whether the state has good reasons to forbid group marriages. And I think they do.

    And gay couples want to get married for the range of reasons that straight couples do, financial, emotional, cultural. After all gays were raised in the same American culture as straights, which is a culture which puts high value on marriage.(How many romantic comedies end in marriage? Most) To denigrate gays as only interested in the financial reasons is to asssume they are somehow different kinds of humans than straights in regards to what they want out of life. And they are not. And again, as this relates to polyamory, your original point, the issue is less the bonafides of groups of 12 people asking to get married but the state’s reasons why they don’t want to grant them.

    touchy-feely? Is that how you characterize straight marriage? Do you look at the gay couples crying with joy at getting licenses in the news and simply dismiss them as a)touchy-feely hippies, or b) cold hearted business arrangements attempting to improve their tax situation?

    What makes you think they are different from straight couples happy at their own weddings, and doubly happy because they are getting a license denied for a long time?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  154. gay scientists should be able to marry the person they love just like everyone else i think

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  155. Example A, B, and Z of why civil unions were a ruse. That was never anything other than a first step. As Northerner/another party clearly shows, this is about forced societal acceptance and affirmation.

    JD (625c89)

  156. JD How is it about forced “social” acceptance? The claims actually made in the court are legal claims concerning the meaning of the 14th amendment. If your point is that gay couples have a variety of reasons for wanting to be treated as full citizens, with the same rights of others, how does that discredit their claims? They grew up in a culture that values marriage -what would make it so strange or wrong that they share those values?

    And what are you being “forced” to do? Agree with SSM? nope. The only party being “forced” is the state, which is supposed to represent all citizens. And that state is being forced to treat its citizens equally.

    Would you have characterized other civil rights struggles as simply a case of “forced acceptance and affirmation”?

    You act like somebody is putting a gun to your head and demanding that you like green eggs and ham. Nobody cares whether you accept SSM or not. They care whether the state treats its citizens with equal dignity.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  157. Is there anyone out there who is interested in seeing this conversation with Another party continued?
    If so, please give a reason or two.
    back to work.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  158. Well, me for one.

    Because MD you are a strong proponent for the view that legalizing SSM is a form of religious oppression and I’d like to see someone develop the argument. Sure, legalizing SSM means that there are more instances in the public square where the issues around anti-discrimination laws will arise, but isn’t the issue really the anti-discrimination laws? If we had only civil unions, some of those entering civil unions would want somebody to bake them a cake, and some cake bakers would balk. Marriage simply provides an additional target.

    And I have been thinking about your further argument about thousands of years of always having done something a particular way, and now it’s all suddenly changing. What really are the uses of history here? During those thousands of years, what would have happened to two gay people who did want to be married, if they had been able to come up with the idea. Mostly they would have been dismissed and scorned by a culture that denied the possibility that two people of the same gender could have a committed relationship equivalent to a straight couple, for reasons completely outside of the issue of marriage. As views towards gays have changed in the past 50 years or so, why wouldn’t that have an effect on the implications for marriage?

    Anyway, I’d be happy to have you keep writing. You seem a good representative of your point of view.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  159. I think it is aggressively dishonest to conflate race and sexual preference, therefore I refuse to accept the mendoucheous premise of your question.

    If you have not seen the forced acceptance and affirmation on display, it has to have been intentional.

    #AssumeOstrichPose

    JD (b12e6e)

  160. balking bakers betray blatantly bigoted biases i think

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  161. MD – I admire your patience.

    JD (b12e6e)

  162. No.

    “I am surprised you didn’t include Gingrich. But I don’t see how you can look at the thousands of couples lining up for marriage licenses across the country and say they are demeaning marriage.”

    The turnout in Canada has been small. Gays are still about 2% of the population and the marriage problem has been most severe in the black community where the opposition in black churches has been high. It is a solution in search of a problem. I am still convinced it is a fad derived from the AIDS epidemic. Civil Unions would have solved the problems that are real but would not have included the ability to rub the noses of opponents in the dirt. The suits against wedding photographers and bakers have been disgusting and the churches will be next.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  163. “Civil Unions would have solved the problems that are real but would not have included the ability to rub the noses of opponents in the dirt. The suits against wedding photographers and bakers have been disgusting and the churches will be next.”

    And student organizations. And employees. And CEO’s. Oops. Already happening.

    JD (b12e6e)

  164. Wifi is a civil right.

    JD (b12e6e)

  165. Another party, you refuse to acknowledge where we have disagreements and reiterate your opinion which begs the question. I have nothing more of importance to say. If you are really interested in my thoughts, reread what I have already written. If that doesn’t satisfy you search “MD in Philly”, “Patterico”, “SSM”, “Homosexuality”, and you can get my collected wisdom through the years.

    Thank you, JD. By God’s mercies I sometimes am patient. I certainly have often required patience from others.

    And I admire your brevity.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  166. Jd – Can you then provide me with an example of forced acceptance, beyond those involved in anti-dsicrimination laws. For example, forced admission that SSM is proper? And would those examples invalide the reasons for SSM itself, or simply put into doubt the broader reaches of SSM law?

    Again, requiring the state to treat gay couples as equals, doesn’t in itself mean that the state requires people to think of them as equals. Your thoughts remain your own just as the thoughts of a racist baker required by anti-discrimination laws to bake cakes for a mixed race couple getting married remain their own. Their actions, however, are constrained. Argue with that if you wish.

    Mike
    You’re shifting your goal posts. The question was whether the goal of gay couples getting married was to demean marriage. The evidence of the last few years in the United States is that when the opportunity arrives thousands of gay couples do take some effort and time and show a lot of eagerness to get married. They do so in serious ceremonies with friends and family there. It is is strange to look at that phenomenon and say they are demeaning marriage.

    As for civil unions, it’s a larger topic that could be explored, but one point to make at least is that all those anti-SSM amendments passed in states in 2004 and later, e.g. in Ohio, Michigan or N.C., specifically also prohibited civil unions. In those situations who was rubbing whose nose in the dirt? The anti sSM forces were waging a battle on the whole idea that committed gay couples had a relationship worthy of any legal recognition at all, marriage or not. Even today I don’t see a single Republican or prominent conservative stand up and say, fine, let’s change federal law to recognize civil unions, which would provide cover for states only imposing civil unions. Civil unions seems to be a rhetorical move, not a real political proposal.

    And suits against churches would violate the 1st and 14th amendments to the Constitution. And thus would fail in front of the same judges now upholding the 14th with respect to marriage.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  167. MD,
    Briefly you beg the question by insisting that the fact that men/women standing at an alter don’t look like two women standing at an alter necessarily means the laws treating them must be different. If you have some argument otherwise I haven’t seen it here.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  168. JD Suits against CEO’s? nope. The private decision of a corporation to fire its CEO. Aren’t businesses supposed to look out for their bottom line and respect the moral views of their management, and customers? Like Chick Fil A?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  169. Again the question is whether the state has good reasons to forbid group marriages. And I think they do.

    Why? If you want to stretch the boundaries of the traditional definition of marriage to one that includes same-sex couples, then it’s both emotionally and legally not much of a leap to extend it to multi-partner marriages. I don’t say that to create a “gotcha!” moment, but because that’s just the way human nature will work or is working.

    Concepts that once seemed extreme or alien in the past become increasingly less and less extreme or strange today. Eventually they become so much background noise and most people come around to no longer being bothered by such things anymore.

    What I find interesting is how people like you who happily rip open the proverbial Pandora’s Box nonetheless still have a supposed limit as to how far things can go or should go. I’d respect your take on SSM if you at least admitted government sanctifying such things will further dumb down our culture, so much so that situations like what’s described below will no longer seem unexpected or surprising. Or, better yet, if you said that multi-partner marriages are just as much in keeping with innate aspects of human sexuality (particularly that of many males) as much as what’s claimed about people into same-sex relationships.

    You remind me of liberal women in the media and who’ve I’ve dealt with through the years who embrace Bill Clinton and rally around Hillary, yet become so indignant when they discover their husband or even boyfriend has not been faithful to them. Or people like happyfeet who strongly love the idea of SSM, and presumably the people who are a part of that, yet mocks “gay” on a regular basis and also bashes polygamous families.

    The two-faced nature of such reactions and behavior gives me whiplash.

    Economist.com, May 2010: When police stopped a woman driving with a full face-covering Islamic veil, little did they know what they would uncover. It turned out that her husband, a halal butcher, practised polygamy, which is illegal in France — or, rather, he was living with four women, one of whom he was married to. Brice Hortefeux, the interior minister, wildly overreacted, demanding that he be stripped of his French nationality. The affair has exposed both the reality of polygamy and the difficulty of doing anything about it.

    France considers polygamy “a grave infringement of the principle of equality between men and women”. The practice was forbidden in 1993, when immigration laws were tightened to stop husbands bringing extra wives into the country. Yet there are an estimated 200,000 people, including children, living in 16,000-20,000 polygamous families in France. Most are of African origin, particularly from Muslim parts of the Maghreb and Sahel, where polygamy is accepted.

    Over the years, notes Sonia Imloul in a study for the Institut Montaigne, a think-tank, the authorities have turned a blind eye to what she calls life “like a prison for the wives”, many of them forced into marriage. Polygamy is widely blamed for social ills ranging from school absenteeism to street violence. Politicians say it is exploited to maximise welfare and housing benefits. Such fraud is hard to detect, since polygamists “marry” various wives under Islam, all of them claiming single-parent payments, while officially being married to just one.

    In a comic twist, Lies Hebbadj, the husband who came under attack from Mr Hortefeux, tried to turn his case against his accusers by declaring that “if one is stripped of French nationality because one has mistresses, then many Frenchmen could be.”

    France is keen on classic women’s issues, [Chantal Brunel, a deputy from France’s former ruling party] observes, such as equal pay and promotion at work, or women on corporate boards, but less interested in the grim reality of polygamy on French soil.

    Mark (c160ec)

  170. Northerner – your civil unions dance is moot. The gay activists would not accept it then, and wouldn’t accept it now. We covered this ground with you previously, as since I did not proclaim my undying support for civil unions with a megaphone from atop Mt Olympus, I wasnt being honest in my support of same. Recall that?

    As to your request for examples, I already predicted your response.

    #AssumeOstrichPose

    JD (b12e6e)

  171. I said nothing of lawsuits. But you do highlight the forced acceptance nicely where people cannot even be employed if they don’t toe your doctrinally enforced line.

    JD (b12e6e)

  172. I really think an issue should be made by somebody (maybe Ben Carson could do this instead of running for President), that all semblance of common sense has left the states of CA, MA, and some court jurisdictions in CO, in forcing the general student population to accept transvestites in their bathrooms and locker rooms, even on girls sports teams and shower rooms.

    To me that makes no sense unless you have an agenda to press and don’t care whose lives you ruin in the meantime,
    not only Jane who can’t grasp the idea of showering next to a person who sure looks like a boy/man,
    but the person with a confused sexual identity who instead of being allowed to work out his issues in relative privacy has become a cause célèbre.

    I am sure there are 33% of Americans who agree with the idea,
    but 67% who don’t.
    The 67% need to have a cold slap in the face.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  173. Heck, I think even happyfeet doesn’t like the idea of mainstreaming of transvestites.
    Not that his opinion is necessarily indicative of anything.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  174. JD,

    You said: “Civil Unions would have solved the problems that are real but would not have included the ability to rub the noses of opponents in the dirt. The suits against wedding photographers and bakers have been disgusting and the churches will be next.”

    And student organizations. And employees. And CEO’s. Oops. Already happening.”

    I took that to mean you claimed lawsuits against student organizations, and employees and CEO’s. How was I misreading you?

    And so a CEO was fired for donating to a cause anathema to a large number of the company’s customers. Isn’t that part of capitalism, and letting businesses protect their bottom line. If a board member of Chick Fil A was fired for donating to the HRC, would it be any different? If you have an example of an employee fired for being anti-SSM i’d be curious but in the U.S. today, businesses are given a fair amount of freedom to fire people.

    Really what you appear to be arguing for is a world in which holding unpopular views is without any social consequence. That’s not a world we’ve lived in for many years and I don’t see why you think it would change.

    As for civil unions I now do recall our previous discussion, dimly, but the point is less than your failure to pick up a megaphone than the actual failure of conservatives in 2004 & 2006 & 2012 (N.C.) to actually act as they pretend they believe, which is that they agree that gay couples should get some legal protection but marriage was special. Actually no, the distinction between “Marriage” and other terms wasn’t that important at the time. Sure most gay activits then, and now, opposed civil unions. But I am judging conservative arguments by how conservatives act on them, not on counterarguments from the other side.

    I’ll do Mark in another email

    Another party (8e12a4)

  175. The first part was a quote. Try reading. There are other ways to force acceptance than lawsuits. Like denying funding to student organizations and speakers. Deny employment.

    JD (b12e6e)

  176. Mark,

    I mentioned my reasons for thinking polyamory is a legal and emotional stretch past SSM but will briefly repeat them here. Emotionally, humans tend to pair bond, at least based on observation. Even the customary polygamy, involving one man and several wives consist of several different pair bonds, as the wives are not necessarily considered married to each other. It seems more rare for all members of a group to equally be emotionally attached to each other. And oppostion to SSM thus means saying to gays that you are not allowed the legal recognition of your average pair bond, different from all the people around you. This seems different to me than saying to a member of a group we are not taking pair bonding and applying it to your group as a whole.

    But that’s just an observation. From a legal perspective the more important questions are whether there are good reasons for the state to deny legal recognition to polyamory. Putting aside the question of whether polyamorists can claim to be an identifiable group in the same way as homosexuals (i think there are arguments on both sides), going to marriage of 10 or 20 changes the effect of a lot of laws implicating marriage. I said this before and gave examples. You seem to be just waving them away with the statement it would not be much of a leap. But leaping from 2 to 20 would make a real difference in divorce and intestate succession, let alone management of community property.

    As for France, you are pointing to an underlyinig problem with polyamory, which may play into whether it actually gains recognition. In France there are no group marriages recognized by the state but in some communities people undergo religious marriages that are polygamous. And usually oppress women. Stopping that might involve actual religious persecution, or intrusion.

    But, in the end, the question is whether the state has a good reason to object to legal recognition. As noted, I think they do. I am puzzled why you think this is hypocritical? I am not bashing polygamous families or the people in them. They are humans with the same rights to protection under the 14th amendment as I have or a gay couple. If they can make a convincing argument to a court that the 14th amendment protects them, more power to them. But the arguments they would make are different from the legal arguments currently being made by SSM couples and those differences matter.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  177. How many people here live, or were eligible to vote in NC in the early 2000’s? Good Allah.

    JD (b12e6e)

  178. JD.

    i was reading. You quoted a passage regarding lawsuits against bakers and then said they apply to CEO’s. Now you are apparently changing your argument. Fair enough.

    Would you prefer a legal regime where employers cannot deny employment to people on the basis of their beliefs? Should the Republican national party organization be forced to hire a Democrat? The NRA a gun grabber?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  179. What other beliefs should disqualify someone from being a CEO? Can you give us a list of acceptable questions, and answers, for the interview process?

    Apparently it is quite fine to Fire someone for holding the exact same belief as Barack Obama in 2006 and 2008.

    JD (b12e6e)

  180. JD,

    As for N.C. it is an example, liek Ohio and Michigan. An example of conservatives disdaining civil unions when they were an actual possibility but now claiming they are a solution – i.e. inconsistency and hypocrisy. If you are not and were not such a person, bully for you. If the shoe doesn’t fit don’t wear it. But if one is arguing that gays disdain civil unions to rub conservatives faces in the dirt with marriage it seems worth mentioning that conservatives in previous times disdained any different between marriage and civil unions to rub gay faces in the dirt with nonrecognition of any legal relationship.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  181. Depends on the business I suppose. Can you tell me what the rules are for Chick fil A today? How about Koch industries?

    As for the case we are talking about the decision of a board to get rid of its most public figure, for market purposes, seems different than firing a lowly employee.

    And I note Obama never donated money to Proposition 8. Instead he eventually directed his Atty. General to stop defending DOMA in court.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  182. So, it has declared it socially unacceptable to disagree with SSM. Then it is declared hate speech. Then people get fired, sued, denied funding, etc. Because of tolerance. Because shut up.

    JD (b12e6e)

  183. No, another party. There are laws about that stuff now. But let’s use the evil SSM supporting Koch Brothers. What questions should they be allowed to ask prospective employees?

    JD (b12e6e)

  184. So it is worse for an employee of a company to donate $1000 than it is for a sitting US Senator and presidential candidate to say that his religion informs his pokitics and that he thinks marriage is between a man and a woman?

    JD (b12e6e)

  185. Instead he eventually directed his Atty. General to stop defending DOMA in court.
    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/11/2014 @ 1:55 pm

    So, you are applauding them for breaking their oaths of office?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  186. “it has been declared” by who, some national body of cultural standards? Views change, particularly about whether people, such as Jews, women, gays, illegitimate children, etc. should be treated with equal dignity.

    As for being declared hate speech, well historically mostly people were getting fired for being gay. I see not much compassion here for that side of the equation. But if you have a problem with hate speech laws being overapplied, go argue it. But A board getting rid of a CEO doesn’t qualify. And the fear of hate speech laws is still not a reason to deny gay couples a marriage license.

    And again, would you prefer a world where you can’t be fired, or not hired for your beliefs? It seems a long step away from the free market capitialism that most conservatives like.

    As for Koch, i don’t know if they oppose SSM. But they do have strong ideological opinions. Don’t you agree? Do you think they should be able to hire people based on those beliefs? (And why would i care what questions they can ask?)

    Re Obama, both were bad, but at least Obama, while in office, took actual steps to advance SSM. Sometimes rhetoric is less important than action. And he wasn’t the CEO of a private company.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  187. MD,

    The government’s prosecutors are required to enforce all laws, which they did. They are not required to argue on behalf of the constitutuionality of a law in front of a court when they do not think there is a good argument for it. The president and atty gen. agreed DOMA was unconstitutional. They continued to enforce it, but stopped arguing its constitutionality in appellate courts. Why do you think that’s wrong? Would President Bush’s DOJ be forced to argue the continued validity of Roe?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  188. “And suits against churches would violate the 1st and 14th amendments to the Constitution.”

    The suits will allege tax exemptions are violating the gay’s rights. They will attack the tax exemption, not the speech per se. And it is coming.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  189. MD – dishonesty, perfidy, and lawlessness are perfectly acceptable to them.

    JD (b12e6e)

  190. Note that another party basically agrees that hate speech for opposition is acceptable. And it is already happening.

    JD (b12e6e)

  191. If it polls well it should be legal!!!!!

    JD (b12e6e)

  192. JD,

    Where did I say hate speeech for opposition to SSM is acceptable? And where is it happening? Did Chick Fil A suffer legally? I would oppose strongly any suits punishing somebody for their beliefs. But that would be distinct from their actions, covered by anti-discrimination laws.

    I am not sure if the perfidy remark was directed at me, but if so it seems a little unfair – do you have examples?

    Mike – religous tax exemptions have survived for a while against many challenges. The tricky questions arise when religions branch out to run institutions like schools or adoption agencies or hospitals. In some states a majority of hospitals are now run by Catholics. At what point does that become a problem for somebody who works at such a hospital or wants to be treated there, who happens to be gay?

    but in any case, if you know of any actual lawsuits along these lines I’d be curious, I’m not sure specifically what you are thinking of. And, to bring this back to the initial topic, if this is a real concern than strengthening religious exceptions to otherwise applicable law would be a more efficient solution than barring gay couples from getting married.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  193. Jd – if it polls well it should be legal? What are you trying to say?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  194. I was addressing MD’s question to me. Unless you are Obama and Holder, I wasnt speaking of your perfidy.

    You keep trying to show some daylight between your position and where opposition to yours is hate speech. Reality shows there is no daylight between them. You approve of people being fired for once having donated to a political group almost a decade previously. You have declared positions contra yours to be unacceptable by modern evolving standards. The idea that opposition to SSM would be deemed hate speech isn’t some imaginary possibility. We see people like you and Gil respond in such a manner in these threads. We see the media make said claims. College student organizations denied funding because of hate speech. So, I find it amusing that you accuse those that disagree with you of said things, but go to great protestation and faux innocence to try to claim that you weren’t, or that the result of that which you propose would have that effect.

    JD (b12e6e)

  195. “what point does that become a problem for somebody who works at such a hospital or wants to be treated there, who happens to be gay?”

    Eff off. You are a noxious arse.

    JD (b12e6e)

  196. JD,

    And you still refuse to state whether you prefer a legal regime in which the board of a company could not get rid of their CEO for doing something that put their company in a bad light with some customers.

    I noted, correctly, that positions are evolving. I don’t know what something means to be “unacceptable”. I assume we wouldn’t enjoy each other’s company at a dinner party, but so far as I am concerned you can keep having your opinions regardless of how social positions evolve. I read that up to 1995 fewer than half of the U.S. approved of mixed race marriages. That cultural attitudes change is a fact. What to do about it is a legal question and there, the issue of how broad hate speech laws go is a separate question from whether SSM should or should not be legalized. If your only objection to SSM is fear of being ostracized for opposing it, that is not sufficient.

    College organizations may or may not get student funding, from the entire student body, based on their beliefs. SSM is peripheral to that issue, not central. Presumably those student bodies are not based solely around an opposition to SSM. But whether or not colleges should have special speech codes, or rules for behavior as part of their mission of socializing students is, again, separate fromo whether gay couples should be denied marriage licenses.

    I don’t see how the question is obnoxious. Do you suggest it could never happen? Or that preventing it from happening would interfere with religious freedom? Or why you are resorting to personal invective. Run out of other arguments?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  197. JD.

    And how were Obama and Holder being perfidious for refusing to defend the constitutionality of DOMA in court? Did they make some solemn promise to always defend DOMA, even if they felt it was invalid?
    Did they refuse to actually enforce DOMA? – no.

    In what way perfidious?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  198. “They are not required to argue on behalf of the constitutuionality of a law in front of a court when they do not think there is a good argument for it. The president and atty gen. agreed DOMA was unconstitutional. They continued to enforce it, but stopped arguing its constitutionality in appellate courts.”

    Another party – Are you suggesting that assuming the country elects a Republican president in 2016, the government will not have to defend Obamacare in front of the Supreme Court starting in 2017?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  199. Assuming Obamacare last that long.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  200. Another party – please outline for us all positions that preclude someone from having employment. Are you really going to go with the bad light to some customers standard? Because that applies to everyone, making it meaningless.

    I know I would not enjoy your company at dinner. I tend to not enjoy intolerant bigoted people.

    If you cannot understand how your question about Catholic hospitals was offensive you are more dense than I had given you credit for.

    JD (b12e6e)

  201. No, daleyrocks. That calculus only works in one direction.

    JD (b12e6e)

  202. if Rubio is elected, for example, his solictor general is not required to argue the consitutionality of Obamacare before the Supreme Court, though his administration would ahve to continue to enforce it until teh S.Ct. ruled, and my guess is, like in Windsor, the S.Ct. would ensure there was somebody present to argue the opposing view.

    JD Who knows? there are a lot of possible types of employment. My own view is that of all possible positions CEO of a company, i.e. the person that is the public face of the company, is the one least in a position to claim his or her personal views should not be taken into account. A burger flipper at MacDonalds would have a better case for legal protection. In between, coming up with general principles would take more work than I want to do right now. But, in any case, I still wonder if you prefer something other than the status quo – i.e. the rule in most states that most positions are employment at will, in which the employer, unless otherwise constrained by anti-discrimination laws, can fire for any reason at all.

    Still waiting to hear about Catholic hospitals. I admit my own knowledge is actually limited to Catholic private schools which like to fire their gay employees when they get married. And then in a different field, Catholic hospitals also like to impose their own views regarding contraception or abortion. Perhaps none, would, ever, fire a gay person for being gay. If so great. Is that the point you are attempting to make?

    Another party (8e12a4)

  203. No, that was not the point. You insinuated that Catholic hospitals would not treat someone because they are gay. It is an offensive suggestion, has no basis in fact or history, and shows the same type of bigotry and ignorance that Gil routinely shows.

    It is not the least bit surprising that you are not willing to explore the possible results of your idea that there are certain ideas that should preclude one from employment. It obviously makes you uncomfortable to ponder what an employer should be able to ask a prospective employee. There are lots of rules there now. Yet you want to make donating to a group that supported the traditional definition of marriage, a position supported by the Lresident and the majority of California s, to be hate speech, well after the fact.

    JD (b12e6e)

  204. They don’t impose their views on abortion. Do you think your right to an abortion supercedes their right to practice their faith? Does the made up right to an abortion mean you can get an abortion wherever you so choose, from whomever you choose?

    JD (b12e6e)

  205. Jd,

    I meant to imply that they might fire a gay employee, not fail to treat a gay patient. I am not sure how you came to the latter. Even as to the former I agree it’s unlikely, though the recent behavior of Catholic schools regarding their married gay staff gives pause.

    And I am not really advocating that there are certain ideas that should preclude employment, merely that that is the current state of the law. If you want to argue against at will employment I am probably there with you, particularly with regard to low level employees of large corporations.

    You on the other hand keep conflating a board of a large company getting rid of a CEO as the same as firing an employee for hate speech. Do you even recognize the distinction between CEO’s and other employees?

    As for abortion, well they impose their position by not performing them. If it should happen that in a state all the hospital were Catholic and, similar to Texas, only hospitals could perform abortions than I guess there would be no abortions in that state. Even at that point I am not sure I would require any privately owned hospital to perform a procedure contrary to its conscience but I would argue laws restricting abortions to hospitals would at that point be unconstitutional (if not before) and/or the state should start operating its own hospitals. I oppose theocracies, formal or informal.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  206. JD,

    I misspoke. By “there are certain ideas that should preclude employment”” i meant to mean that employers can take into account employee ideas in deciding on employment. Which so far as I am aware is the current law of employment. I did not intend to imply that the state should be able to pass laws forbidding people with particular ideas from employment.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  207. ““what point does that become a problem for somebody who works at such a hospital or wants to be treated there, who happens to be gay?”

    Or wants to be treated there. Where could I possibly have gotten that idea?

    JD (b12e6e)

  208. JD,

    You’re right. I should have gone up an took a look at my own previous comment more closely. That was a stupid point to make in context and I apologize. I think I was thinking of a gay spouse denied access to their spouse in treatment by a hospital that didn’t recognize marriage, but still probably unlikely.

    Another party (8e12a4)

  209. Two posts on different aspects, this one on political issues.

    I’m not sure if it was on this thread or another where people talked about single issue voters. I became a single issue voter during a Bush/Gore debate in 2000.
    My single issue? I vote against the person who I can demonstrate is doing the most lying to my face (even if only over the TV screen). One of my sons thinks this is a ridiculous strategy, I guess because he has come to the conclusion that all politicians lie, so what difference does it make. I tended to think that at one time, but then the capacity of pathological liars to lie even when they didn’t need to made me realize that the problem with liars, especially pathological ones, is that you can’t trust them. So, even if they say what you want them to say, so what???

    With that single issue, I am hard pressed to even consider voting for a Democrat who aligns themselves with the Democratic party (including supposedly pro-life Bob Casey Jr.). Once upon a time DOMA was considered to be the solution to the societal conflict over SSM, and that there was no need to consider a Constitutional Amendment. That was the line of Bill and Hillary Clinton. As also said, Obama said he was for the traditional definition of marriage, until he was against it. In this I agree with “Another party”, that what people do is more important than what they say.

    It was widely known that Giuliani was pro-choice, but he said that if elected president he would not use his position to forward a pro-choice agenda, and his appointments for justices would be based on general principles of Constitutional interpretation, not whether someone was going to protect Roe V wade or not. Maybe I was wrong, but I could have voted for him believing he meant what he said.

    Meanwhile, I am still waiting for Obama to fulfill one of his first promises, to put on the web an account of where the stimulus money went.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  210. I don’t know that abortion makes me a single issue voter. I do not want that hardness of heart in a person with power over the lives, liberty and property of others, no matter the “issue”.

    nk (dbc370)

  211. This is an addendum to part one.

    Perhaps one of the biggest dishonesties of recent years:
    “Dissent is patriotic”.
    The truth intended is arguably, “Dissent is patriotic, when it is Dems and libs dissenting against Repubs and conservatives” (When done by Repubs and conservatives, it is undermining foreign policy and hate speech).

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  212. note nk, if your comment was in reference to me, I did not say abortion was my single issue, dishonesty is. I would vote for Giuliani before I would vote for someone who claimed to be pro-life but who I did not trust, like Casey, Jr.)

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  213. The second issue is different, and again I do not expect “Another party” to even be willing to agree where we disagree.

    It is apparent to me that some see the essence of human life as determined by man-made legal and political structures, and the strategies to further one’s aims in these arenas. Morality, if there is such a thing, is a construct of laws that some people are successful in establishing and implementing.
    That is a fine view of things and people have their reasons for believing it.

    Another view, which I accept, and apparently which Justice Holmes and others have rejected, is that humans are only a small part of this vast universe, and the universe does not revolve around our wishes and whims. In this vast universe, there is a fabric not only of readily observable physical laws, but also of not so readily visible physical laws, and logical and moral law as well. We do not make up physical laws, we discover them, we do not make up logic, we discover logic, and we do not make up moral law, we discover it.

    A society based on the second worldview can tolerate those in the first. Those in the first cannot tolerate those in the second. What we have today are people of the first worldview pushing their view onto others while claiming it is the more tolerant view.

    While any individual has their reasons for believing and doing what they do, one view (in a “obscure part of the Scriptures”) is that on the whole, people understand this second view, and to disbelieve it is actually a purposeful act of refusing to believe what is clear. More problematic than denying the truth, is advocating that others deny it as well.

    One cannot make a person understand what they do not want to, observed in the natural world in the saying, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink”.

    Off to church (egad, he said it!!!??!!).

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  214. Oh, no, I was talking about my threshold issue, in reference to your reference to abortion.

    And please don’t take this as a comment of your judgment of Giuliani, either. Among lawyers, Giuliani had a reputation as treacherous, double-dealing, self-seeking creep, just short of Mike Nifong, when he was a prosecutor. And subsequent events, from giving the New York Senate seat to Hillary, to literally* parading his mistress in front of his wife, to publicly dumping his wife, showed that he was a very flawed character.

    *Literally, in New York City parades.

    nk (dbc370)

  215. nk, I thought so, but just wanted to be clear we were understanding each other.
    I agree that to some Giuliani was not a trustworthy character, which more evidence supported, and I was wrong to trust him in what he said. But it is still a useful illustration of my point, it just also shows that the implementation of a plan can be faulty.
    Of course, if thngs are that way too often, we lapse back into the “What difference does it make?” theme.

    Oh, a thought I know almost nothing about but I see you lawyers mention it, “Jury nullification”. Would it be a logical and appropriate extrapolation to say that court rulings these days are often “voter nullification”?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  216. Yes. They’re supposed to be. We do not have an Athenian democracy. And when people in a position to do something about it develop the same disdain for the courts that they now have for the voters, we will not have a constitutional democracy either. We will have a Caesar.

    nk (dbc370)

  217. The first guy who corrects my “democracy” to “republic” will get his house toilet-papered on Halloween.

    nk (dbc370)

  218. And oppostion to SSM thus means saying to gays that you are not allowed the legal recognition of your average pair bond, different from all the people around you. This seems different to me than saying to a member of a group we are not taking pair bonding and applying it to your group as a whole.

    Another party, your focusing on the nature of duo relationships as somehow making homosexuality deserving of special consideration is no more valid a justification of changing the traditional definition of marriage as the contention that because male nature (straight, bi or gay) tends to be non-monogamous or promiscuous — and since male homosexuality in particular poses a greater health risk to the parties involved (for anatomical reasons pertaining to the male body—and we’ll leave out the “TMI” or “NSFW” details here) — that the government (and society) should therefore discourage homosexuality.

    In fact, I do make the second contention, but I would never sanctify that by having the government enact laws forbidding what gays or bisexual males do behind closed doors.

    You seem to be just waving them away with the statement it would not be much of a leap. But leaping from 2 to 20 would make a real difference in divorce and intestate succession, let alone management of community property.

    Okay, then the state should legalize polygamy but limit it to no more than 3, 4 or 5 (or pick a number) people in a shared relationship. Or whatever makes legal paperwork less complicated for both the public and government (which, btw, has never been an issue with the IRS).

    But, in the end, the question is whether the state has a good reason to object to legal recognition. As noted, I think they do. I am puzzled why you think this is hypocritical?

    Because your touchy-feely biases pertaining to same-sex couples and marriage do not wash over to your response towards multi-partner relationships and marriage. Moreover, I don’t think feeling pangs of do-gooderism about GLBT is necessarily any more appropriately compassionate or humane than a similar reaction towards polygamists when there are quite a few people out there (in particular males) best illustrated by what I pasted in my post #3 near the top of this forum.

    I don’t think the government recognizing or sanctioning either same-sex or polygamist relationships is a great idea, but I do admit that if I run into a guy who has, say, 2 or 3 wives, my natural reaction will be to flinch less than if I encounter a guy who’s standing next to another guy who the first guy introduces with the words, “Mark, this is my husband, David.” You can label that innate response on my part a form of “Alec Baldwin-ism.”

    Mark (c160ec)

  219. Once upon a time DOMA was considered to be the solution to the societal conflict over SSM, and that there was no need to consider a Constitutional Amendment. That was the line of Bill and Hillary Clinton. As also said, Obama said he was for the traditional definition of marriage, until he was against it.

    In light of the reported homosexuality (or bisexuality) of both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama — but most crucially their far-reaching leftist emotions — I always knew their publicly stated opposition to SSM in the past was no more than a so-called stage whisper.

    Mark (c160ec)

  220. 208. Jd,

    I meant to imply that they might fire a gay employee, not fail to treat a gay patient. I am not sure how you came to the latter. Even as to the former I agree it’s unlikely, though the recent behavior of Catholic schools regarding their married gay staff gives pause.

    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/11/2014 @ 5:41 pm

    Shocking, isn’t it?

    I mean, that they have married gay staff at all.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  221. Obama lied in the past, but is likely sincere in his support of gays now. Hillary would have them marked with pink triangles, and burned in ovens, if she thought it would make her President.

    I say only “likely” in the case of Obama, because Communists, particularly Stalinists like Axelrod’s parents, generally hate (that’s h8, happyfeet) gays.

    nk (dbc370)

  222. Welcome to America. Where it’s still legal to be a Christian. Barely. And only as long as you don’t take it seriously.

    Where it’s even legal to send your kid to a Catholic school. Presumably to learn how to be a Catholic.

    As long as your school toes the government line. Which includes hiring staff members who set an example that is the polar opposite of what the Catholic church teaches.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  223. no h8!

    happyfeet (a785d5)

  224. As for abortion, well they impose their position by not performing them. If it should happen that in a state all the hospital were Catholic and, similar to Texas, only hospitals could perform abortions than I guess there would be no abortions in that state. Even at that point I am not sure I would require any privately owned hospital to perform a procedure contrary to its conscience but I would argue laws restricting abortions to hospitals would at that point be unconstitutional (if not before) and/or the state should start operating its own hospitals. I oppose theocracies, formal or informal.

    Another party (8e12a4) — 10/11/2014 @ 5:41 pm

    And why should a Catholic hospital perform abortions when they believe abortion is murder? It is the pro-abortion crowd that wants to impose their position.

    Texas does not require that hospitals only perform abortions. Since abortion is major surgery and the woman getting an abortion could die from the procedure, Texas passed a law requiring the abortion doctor have hospital admitting privileges at a local hospital. It’s for the woman’s safety.

    There is no constitutional right to abortion. Before you start spouting anti God rhetoric, you should read the Declaration of Independence and find out where our rights come from. Hint, their Creator is the God of the Christian faith. The first English language bible printed in the Americas was printed by Congress.

    Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.

    John Adams – Signer of the Declaration of Independence and Second President of the United States

    Tanny O'Haley (066e8f)

  225. “In some states a majority of hospitals are now run by Catholics.”

    Another party – Can you do me a solid and provide a list of these states, please?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  226. 228. “In some states a majority of hospitals are now run by Catholics.”

    Another party – Can you do me a solid and provide a list of these states, please?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 10/12/2014 @ 9:32 am

    What I’d like to see is the rulebook Another Party is following. The one that says that Catholic hospitals can in no meaningful sense be in any way Catholic.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  227. It’s perfectly legal for the Catholic nuns belonging to the religious order that Mother Theresa founded to open a hospice in Washington D.C. just like the one she founded in Calcutta.

    As long as they hire married lesbian couples to staff it.

    And buy them birth control pills.

    Steve57 (e409e4)

  228. Steve57 – Those are scary, imposing, hate thoughts you have there and they frighten and confuse me.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)


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