the CA Supreme Court held this morning that Prop8 – the voter-passed amendment to the CA Constitution that defines “marriage” as only between a man and a woman – is to be upheld and not ruled unconstitutional.
The language of Justice George’s decision seemed almost regretful, as he wrote that “our task in the present proceeding is not to determine whether the provision at issue is wise or sound as a matter of policy or whether we, as individuals, believe it should be a part of the California Constitution.” Instead, he wrote, “our role is limited to interpreting and applying the principles and rules embodied in the California Constitution, setting aside our own personal beliefs and values.” — “California Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Same-Sex Marriage”, NYT
all over Facebook and Twitter and everywhere else people are saying “i’m so disappointed in the Court” and “WTF is wrong with California” etc., but i wasn’t expecting anything but what happened, because that is what i expect courts to do.
to be honest, while i’m extremely sad that Prop8 is still in effect and sickened that so many Californians are so closed-minded and homophobic and stuck to “traditional values” in a constantly-changing world, i totally don’t think that the courts should be overturning anything voter-passed unless there was some sort of legal reason why the act was invalid (which they determined it wasn’t), and i agree with George’s statement of why they did what they did. maybe i have too much blind faith in the supposed non-partisan function of the legal system, or i’m missing something, but i don’t want court justices deciding our morals and values, even if i agree with them.Filed in culture and random linkage, politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comments (4)
on Miss California and her statement regarding gay marriage: this part of her answer is totally fine with me:
“I think it’s great that Americans are able to choose one or the other,” Prejean responded. “But in my country, and in my family, I think that I believe that marriage should be between a man and a woman.”
i was with her up to that point. you think “it’s great” that people have the choice in America, but you don’t agree. i feel the same way about a lot of things. (i wonder if she feels the same way about abortion?) the part that put me off, however, which no one else seems to be focusing on, was the last sentence:
“No offense to anybody out there, but that’s how I was raised.”
first of all, anytime you start a sentence with “no offense”, YOU KNOW IT’S OFFENSIVE. and stating that makes you look like a bigot. as the most popular comment on the SF Gate article says: “Good for her to speak her mind! But her grand children will know her as the bigot that she was.”
secondly and more importantly, however, i can’t tell you how many times i’ve heard people defend their racism/sexism/ethically questionable position or action with “that’s how i was raised“. there was a time in america where the same thing defense could be said about believing black people are racially inferior and therefore not equal, or that it’s ok to beat your children as punishment. and you know what? not everything you were taught by your parents is correct. not all parents are saints. saying that, to me, is like saying: “I haven’t learned anything growing up, and I don’t have the ability to make my own conclusions. I believe what I was taught, even if the world changes and new information comes to light.”
i thought about all this when i heard it on the news, got irritated, and then sort of forgot about it. but then i read that bit in the paper yesterday about her going on The Today Show and defending it again by saying:
“It’s not about being politically correct,” she said. “For me, it’s about being biblically correct.”
and i thought my head was going to explode.
as @markmorford tweeted: “Meet the new face of Christian GOP marriage: blonde, skinny, not all that bright, does exactly what she’s told. Perfect.”Filed in philosophical ramblings, politics and news | Tagged with bible, prop8 | Comment (1)
this situation – in which an abused family member could be legally taken from a loving gay caregiver – is a prime example of why “domestic partnership” is NOT EQUAL. those campaigning against gay marriage under the guise of “protecting children” are using children as an excuse to further a discriminatory agenda. if they really cared about “family values”, they’d let people who want to be families be families, and have the right to protect those they love.
~viaFiled in politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comment (0)
i know i said i wouldn’t post anymore about prop8, and i know everyone and their gay brother has also already posted this, but this is too good to not post for the few of you who might have missed it.
keith olbermann on the passing of prop8: it’s one of the most thoughtful, and, importantly, non-angry commentaries on the subject i’ve heard or read yet. he is so passionate about it he almost starts crying.
If you voted for this Proposition or support those who did or the sentiment they expressed, I have some questions, because, truly, I do not understand. Why does this matter to you? What is it to you? In a time of impermanence and fly-by-night relationships, these people over here want the same chance at permanence and happiness that is your option. They don’t want to deny you yours. They don’t want to take anything away from you. They want what you want—a chance to be a little less alone in the world.
…What is this, to you? Nobody is asking you to embrace their expression of love. But don’t you, as human beings, have to embrace… that love? The world is barren enough.
It is stacked against love, and against hope, and against those very few and precious emotions that enable us to go forward. Your marriage only stands a 50-50 chance of lasting, no matter how much you feel and how hard you work.
And here are people overjoyed at the prospect of just that chance, and that work, just for the hope of having that feeling. With so much hate in the world, with so much meaningless division, and people pitted against people for no good reason, this is what your religion tells you to do? With your experience of life and this world and all its sadnesses, this is what your conscience tells you to do?
With your knowledge that life, with endless vigor, seems to tilt the playing field on which we all live, in favor of unhappiness and hate… this is what your heart tells you to do? You want to sanctify marriage? You want to honor your God and the universal love you believe he represents? Then Spread happiness—this tiny, symbolic, semantical grain of happiness—share it with all those who seek it. Quote me anything from your religious leader or book of choice telling you to stand against this. And then tell me how you can believe both that statement and another statement, another one which reads only “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
You are asked now, by your country, and perhaps by your creator, to stand on one side or another. You are asked now to stand, not on a question of politics, not on a question of religion, not on a question of gay or straight. You are asked now to stand, on a question of love. All you need do is stand, and let the tiny ember of love meet its own fate.
you can read the whole transcript here.Filed in culture and random linkage, philosophical ramblings, politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comments (6)
with all this gay marriage talk, of course more than a few friends have re-asked the question about why jay and i aren’t married yet, and i’m sure a lot more people are thinking about what marriage means to them, from the Yeson8 people to unmarried straight people like myself who support gay rights. holden @ SF Love Story is also thinking about it, and wrote:
“A while ago, I made a little promise to myself that I would not marry anyone until I had the right to marry who I wanted. That secret turned into a full on refutation of marriage altogether for me, fueled by my parents’ recent divorce after 30+ years. Why get married at all?”
again: of course there are some quixotic personal reasons (when people ask jay why we aren’t married, he answers: “because my girlfriend is
weird crazy” (edited after jay said “no, i tell people you’re crazy, not weird.”), but in the end, until marriage is something for everyone, something equal, i see it as a legal situation for a privileged class, not as a sacred and blessed institution of love. i won’t say it means nothing about love, because for other people, it does. for them. i don’t boycott weddings, i don’t admonish my friends for getting married. it’s all very personal, why people do it. just like its very personal why i’m not. i just wish everyone had the choice.
In pushing its members in California to vote yes on Proposition 8, and in pushing its members everywhere to contribute time and money to the campaign against relationship equality in our state, the Mormon church (LDS) has violated the terms of its federal tax-exempt status. Section 501(c)(3) of US Code Title 26 provides such status to entities “…organized and operated exclusively for religious… no substantial part of the activities of which is carrying on propaganda, or otherwise attempting, to influence legislation…” That it was in violation of this requirement could not be clearer, and it was exactly the sort of violation this section of the law was intended to protect against. Churches cannot become PACs, in whole or in part, and expect to still be treated as nothing more than churches in the eyes of the law.
A blog has been set up at lds501c3.wordpress.com with further details and instructions on how you can register a formal complaint with the IRS, including a partially pre-filled form to take some of the pain out of the process. I encourage all of my readers to do so. This isn’t simply about revenge (if you want to be unkind) or justice (as is my view of it), but about upholding the principle of separation between church and state and preventing the unfettered setting of a very dangerous precedent.
more info on the legalese here.
you can also CLICK HERE AND SIGN THIS PETITION
there is a protest march in downtown SF tonight @ 5:30. these days, i’m generally not one to take to the streets to protest, but i think in this case, i might have to shuck the distaste for crowds and join the masses.Filed in politics and news, things you can do | Tagged with prop8 | Comment (0)
here is the simplest way to put it. the U.S. Constitution (not the California Constitution) says:
“No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.”
Prop8 is unConstitutional.
even if you aren’t for gay marriage, you should be against anything that affects a U.S. citizen’s rights.
california citizens over the age of 18: sign the Petition to Re-open Proposition 8 for CaliforniaFiled in culture and random linkage, politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comment (0)
If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.
It’s the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers this nation has never seen, by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different, that their voices could be that difference.
It’s the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled. Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states.
We are, and always will be, the United States of America.
i was joyous.
i was, and am, optimistic.
a new page has turned.
an african american president, only 43 years after everyone was guaranteed the right to vote.
yet, still, with the gay marriage ban proposition passing in california and similar legislation passed in other states, it is readily apparent that america still has a way to go before everyone, the way god made them – black, white, disabled, gay - will be seen as, and treated as, equal.
obama does not support gay marriage, and it is perhaps due to him and his public statements on the subject (even though he supported the “No on 8″ campaign for its constitutionality, he still publicly stated he believes marriage is only between man and a woman) that these measures passed. millions of americans that voted for him also voted against gay marriage. so it was bittersweet to hear him say those words above, when at the same time rights were being taken from millions of americans. it’s amazing to me that a black man (and 70% of african american voters?) could support “separate but equal” rights for gay americans. we all know there is no such thing.
you can’t win them all at once, i guess, and so he’s right: this is only the beginning.Filed in politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comments (5)
and just a little more on Prop8 from my current favorite bloggers:
Filed in culture and random linkage, politics and news | Tagged with prop8 | Comment (0)
So several of you have emailed me about something happening in California. Now, a lot of crazy stuff goes on in that state and so I may be getting this a little mixed up. Evidently they are wanting to pass a constitutional amendment to make only marriages between a man and a woman valid in California. Talk about an ignorant pot calling a gay kettle black. Somebody really should check the latest divorce rates because clearly many marriages everywhere are not valid.
Now I am an old broad. We didn’t talk about this stuff. I really don’t know why gay people want to get married. It’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Just ask Harold. But I guess if one consenting adult wants to declare their love for another, why would anyone have an issue? I do know one gay couple. Margaret’s nephew and his friend have been together for several years. They are a lovely couple and make me laugh and feel special every time I see them. A couple of years ago Texas passed one of these constitutional amendments. The place where Harold and I go to vote is actually an elementary school in the neighborhood. On that particular election day I was appalled to see all the signs that said “Marriage Should Be Between a Man and Woman Only”. As Harold drove us into the parking lot to vote, I looked out the window at those signs and realized that many parents had driven their kids to school that morning driving past those very signs. I wonder if any of them had the same reaction I did – those signs reminded me of the little signs we used to have back in the day that said “Whites Only”. Think about it.
halloween was fun and all, but because prop8 was my pet issue this election, i failed to voice my opinion earlier on some of the other things on the ballot that i think are super important and/or i’m passionate about and i think i should blog about those first.
Proposition 2: Fair Treatment of Farm Animals: as a vegetarian for almost 10 years out of concern for animal welfare and the environment, i’m in full support of prop2. this measure will give farm animals more room to do things like lie down that unfortunately many animals don’t already have because industrial farms will do anything to maximize profit, even cruel, disgusting things. also, smaller, better managed farms protect your air and water which are polluted by huge factory farms, which is not only good for the environment but helps family farmers. mostly though, if you vote no on this, you are heartless and cruel.
Proposition 4 aka “Sarah’s Law”: Waiting Period and Parental Notification for Abortion. the third time’s a charm, people. VOTE NO, AGAIN. while i understand the stated fears of repercussions for very young girls (not getting proper aftercare, sexual crimes not reported properly), i think the repercussions the other way (like minors going to people who are NOT doctors for abortions instead so their parents won’t be notified) far outweigh the few instances wherein this might make a difference. this essentially will create a black market for non-parentally-notified abortions, which will cause more problems than it will solve, guaranteed.
and while it might seem intuitive to vote YES on alternative energy propositions, the fact is that both Prop 7 and Prop 10 are flat-out greenwashing that will only result in certain groups/people making tons of money with little benefit to citizens or the green energy market. specifically, vote NO on 7 because it “Caps price impacts on consumer’s electricity bills at less than 3 percent” and “Utilities entering into contracts with alternative fuel providers will be required to sign 20-year contracts.” caps the price? 20-year contract? since when has the energy market stayed stable for 2 years, let alone 20? why is it a good idea to cap and control prices on something that should fluctuate with market demand? hell, even the UTILITIES are against it, and they’re the ones who probably stand to profit most! the only backers of this are some billionare dude – something is sketchy here. likewise, prop 10 is being funded by one petroleum billionaire who just wants to make a fuckton of money. oh, and it’s expensive and not actually very feasible.
for information on things on YOUR ballot, wherever you live in the U.S., visit Ballotopedia. For info on CA ballots, click here for statewide or here to find your city/county. for a local SF cheatsheet, i suggest the False-Profit 2008 Voter Guide.Filed in environment, food, health & vegetarianism, politics and news, things you can do | Tagged with false profit, greenwashing, prop10, prop2, prop4, prop7, prop8 | Comments (3)