After the wave of elation I’ve felt following the Wednesday ruling by a federal judge that struck down Proposition 8 as unconstitutional, I’m starting to feel a wee bit peeved. Proposition 8, for those of you that haven’t paid any attention to California politics, was a voter-approved initiative that limited recognition of marriage in California to those between one man and one woman. The conclusions from the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger, found that the proposition was unconstitutional on Fourteenth Amendment grounds. Yay!
Now, for the rant: I am sick and tired of hearing the arguments put forth by the supporters of Prop 8. Straight people can get married: cool. Same-sex marriage: denied. How is it possible to view this as anything other than discriminatory behavior towards the queer community? Alright, fine, you’re a little squeamish about the idea of a same-sex relationship, whether because your religion tells you to or your reptile brain protests. You stop telling me what I can do with my relationships, and I won’t come and tell you how to conduct your religion, deal? The ruling was a significant step forward in queer rights, but goddammit I want my rights and I want my rights now! I am getting sick and tired of self-righteous asshole douchebag bigots on their moral high-horse telling me what I can and cannot do. FUCK YOU!
Bonus (mini) rant: Hello New York Times. Hello KRON 4 News. Hello SF Chronicle, NPR News, and assorted other mainstream media outlets. When will you stop being so dishonest and actually report the news fairly? When you cover the news at the federal courthouse and publishing photo galleries, please remember that there’s not always ‘two sides to every issue’. I was there. Total number of Prop 8 supporters: 5. Number of queer rights supporters: 50+. We outnumbered the bigots at least 10:1, but you had to go ahead and photograph/interview the ‘other side’ to provide a ‘balanced news story’. Fuck you! Do you interview the crazy cat lady throwing feral felines when covering a story about a new animal shelter? No, of course not. Then why interview similarly crazy people (seriously, one guy had this crudely written highlighter sign that made absolutely no sense) when they are in a tiny minority of numbers amidst a crowd of normal, sane people?
The favorite “I am not a bigot” argument seems to be that an “activist” judge took it upon himself the redefine the common word “marriage” thus contorting the English language to achieve an improper end contrary to “the will of the people.”
I’m not sure I understand the quotes around “will of the people.”
If this is judicial activism, it’s a pretty mild form of it. Judicial activism isn’t simply flouting the will of the people. It’s imposing new law in the absence of textual support in existing law.
This judge is arguably conforming his ruling to the plain text of the Constitution: “Equal Protection.” The fact of the matter is that (Baker v. Nelson notwithstanding) the federal courts have not definitively ruled on the issue of same-sex marriage in a meaningful way. There’s no doubt that this decision flouts tradition, but it’s well-reasoned and solid (and, frankly, seems to have been written with the specific goal of persuading Justice Kennedy). It is, in other words, basically an issue of first impression, and thus isn’t activist is the truest sense.
My only gripe is the choice of pretending to apply the rational basis test, and then actually applying rational basis “with teeth,” a la Cleburne and Romer. I would prefer the courts simply said, “Look, sexuality is like gender, and we’re going to analyze it under intermediate scrutiny the same way we analyze gender-based EP claims.”
I put quotes around the “will of the people” because that’s the phrase I see thrown about by folks when they complain that a judge can undo the will of the people as expressed in Prop. 8.
My point is that the “will of the people” is indeed expressed in Prop. 8, but the “will of the people” also includes “due process” and “equal protection” as provided in the constitution, which was written by “we the people.”
Somehow, folks are willing to say the “will of the people” means Prop. 8 only, but they don’t think of the constitution itself as also reflecting the “will of the people.”
If the people wrote the Constitution, then the people get to determine what it says, at least in cases where it isn’t explicit. And the people of California have stated rather clearly that they don’t want the Constitution to include gay marriage.
To the extent that it imposes gay marriage on people who have gone to all the trouble of creating and passing a referendum explicitly saying they don’t want it, then it clearly does not reflect the “will of the people”.
We live in a constitutional republic. The government may not do **anything ** unless the Constitution explicitly says they can. THe Constitution does not say anything about gay marriage - that is just something that gay-marriage advocates made up, like the right to abortion in Roe v. Wade.
But then, I am in favor of limited government, which makes me pretty much unique on this board.
:rolleyes: How, exactly, is gay marriage “imposed” on anyone? Who’s going to be forced to enter into a gay marriage against their will? Or is this all about those poor, poor folks who will have to endure the crushing burden of knowing that someone, somewhere, is doing something that makes the Baby Jesus cry?
I never get tired of hearing how this imposes gay marriage on those who don’t want it. Seriously. It cracks me right the hell up every time someone drops this nugget.
ETA: Looks like I was a little slow on the typing there. You got it, cwthree – it all comes down to one of two things. Either their IPU says it’s bad, or they just thing them queers is gross. No other way around it.
Yeah, and the Alabama state constitution used to expressly forbid interracial marriage. The people don’t get to make that call. We’re better than discrimination, and I’m glad that someone is beating the reactionary bigots over the head with that.
How exactly, does it impose this on anyone? I don’t understand that. As for limited government, I have my doubts when people say that now. Too often it is just codespeak.
Limited or less government when it comes to my life or business, but MORE regulation/restriction/control when it comes to someone else. because they might “impose” some sort of ummmm mumble mumble stuff on me, or because they do icky things … or something.
Considering the proposition originally passed by 52%, ISTM that Californians are pretty well divided on the issue and behooves the media to make sure they are representing both sides – even if one side has an indefensible position.
Right. My beef isn’t that the media are covering the Yes on 8 people as part of the larger debate, it’s just that I don’t like how they feel the need to cover a tiny group of people who go around to shit on other people’s gatherings. It’s akin to covering the crazy Westboro Baptist Chuchers at a well attended, respectful funeral.
Actually I believe the commonly held position is that a citizen can do anything not specifically outlawed, isn’t that true? If that’s the case then unless you outlaw SSM it’s allowed. Hence Prop 8 tried to outlaw it.
And if you are in favor of limited government then it follows that you believe the Government has no business sticking it’s nose into making laws restricting who can marry.
The court actually limited Government in this case basically saying you have no right to expand the governments power into this area.
Well, I think they might say that when the people approved the language of the Fourteenth Amendment, they did not intend for their language to encompass same-sex marriage. So even the existence of the Fourteenth Amendment is probably viewed as supporting the view that the will of people is opposed to same-sex marriage.