Thursday, November 06, 2008

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

Barack Obama is your 44th President of the United States. I'll admit, I didn't think it would happen. Frankly, way back when this all started, I thought it would be Hillary. But of course I am thrilled. In my mind, the Republicans who fear that this result will lead to disaster haven't been looking around. In my mind, there's nowhere to go but up.

Unfortunately, the victory is bittersweet for patriots here in California due to the passage of Proposition 8, an amendment to take rights away from Gay Americans, and the passage of similar laws throughout the country.

What makes this so disturbing is that many of those African Americans in California who are so joyful at touting Obama's victory as a victory for equality and civil rights were just as happy to pull a lever to curtail the rights of gays, and have no problem reconciling the two positions, despite the fact that attitudes against gays today are virtually identical to the ones against blacks in Dr. King's time.

The Proposition 8 passage is an abomination, and the hardship that it puts on homosexuals may be the least of the tragedy.

1. Its Unamerican

For those who complained that war dissenters were unpatriotic, here's what real non-patriotism looks like. To amend a constitution to take away rights rather than to grant them is possibly the most unamerican thing anyone could possibly favor. In our Declaration of Independence, our founding document, it states that this country is dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal, with the inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The pursuit of happiness is guaranteed by the most fundamental of American documents, and Americans voted on Tuesday to deny that guarantee.

2. It's Unconstitutional

The equal protection clause of the 14th amendment to the constitution, often used to protect the rights of blacks, clearly indicates that gay marriage bans are not permissible in a free country (check out the last clause of Section 1). If we had a fair Supreme Court, the California proposition and others could easily be taken to the Federal court system and be struck down. Sadly, our court is littered with activist judges who legislate their values from the bench, led by the unabashed hypocrite Antonin Scalia, who brazenly claims to be a strict constructionist while he interprets our most sacred document however the hell he wants.

3. It's Dangerous

Allowing a constitution to be amended by a simple majority vote is unprecedented. It's also ridiculous and dangerous. It sets a precedent that allows the majority to dictate minority rights. In America, majority rules while minorities are protected. Not so in California. Why can't Jews be barred from getting married next? Or Armenians or sanitation workers? All it takes in California to make any of that happen is a good campaign to get it on the ballot and an intolerant majority. What could be more dangerous than that?

In conclusion, those who voted for Obama because they believe in his ideas and that the change he and his fellow Democrats can bring will be good for this country, bravo. For those who voted against civil rights, against American ideals, especially those who have ostensibly been fighting for equality for so long, shame on you.

2 comments:

Rick said...

Lots of big, bold ideas in here. I especially like the ideas of barring jews, armenians and sanitation workers from marrying. But what if a gay jew wants to marry an armenian sanitation worker? Do the double-negatives cancel out?

So many hypocrisies in this whole prop 8 bs. Did you know that the teacher who supposedly "brought her elementary school students to a gay wedding" actually merely invited the students and their families to her own gay wedding? And the crap about the bible being against gay marriage is so ridiculous. Do people even read the bible, before deciding to base their life on it? On Air America they were talking about other stuff in the old testament: like parts that say that slavery is ok, etc.

Craig Berger said...

Those commercials were so ludicrous they would be funny if the whole thing wasn't so tragic. I like how they refer to these things like they are a causal sequence of events. "They said gay marriage wouldn't be taught in schools. THEN a teacher took her students to a lesbian wedding!" Like they were just waiting for heterosexual backs to be turned so they could spirit kids off to a gay wedding. I also enjoy the terrified looking children on the commercials who obviously in real life wouldn't care one bit.

And what does it mean to "teach marriage in school" anyway? Im pretty sure kids learn what marriage is without special instruction most of the time.

As far as the whole biblical explanation nonsense, check out my next post.