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It’s About Rights and the Constitution

Press Right-wing

by Robert Cruickshank

In a column that should surprise precisely nobody, right-wing San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra J. Saunders tries to dismiss the Prop 8 trial as being about “feelings.” In doing so, she quite deliberately avoids the fact that the trial is about fundamental rights and the US Constitution, where the impact of discriminatory laws on the targeted class helps illustrate the unconstitutionality of the law.

Saunders is one of those conservatives who, rather than being motivated by a right-wing ideology, is primarily motivated by the desire to oppose anything progressives support. While conservatives like Ted Olson understand that same-sex marriage is something conservatives can and should support, Saunders prefers to use her column and the Prop 8 trial to try and deny the rights of same-sex couples by belittling the discrimination they have faced because of Prop 8’s passage.

She writes:

Feelings rule – and not just because the measure’s foes somehow believe that Californians haven’t been taught enough about gay people. Anti-8 attorneys have chosen to argue that Prop. 8 is unconstitutional in light of a 1996 U.S. Supreme Court decision that overturned a Colorado ban on gay-rights measures because it was motivated by animus toward homosexuals. If they can convince Walker that the Prop. 8 people are haters, he may overturn the will of the majority of California voters.

But this isn’t exactly right. By citing Romer v. Evans, the 1996 decision that threw out Colorado’s Amendment 2, she makes it sounds like the notion that voters can’t enact discriminatory constitutional amendments is somehow new and novel. But the majority’s opinion, authored by Justice Anthony Kennedy, makes it clear that the US Constitution played the key role in the decision:

It is not within our constitutional tradition to enact laws of this sort. Central both to the idea of the rule of law and to our own Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection is the principle that government and each of its parts remain open on impartial terms to all who seek its assistance. “Equal protection of the laws is not achieved through indiscriminate imposition of inequalities.”

The key Constitutional provision is the 14th Amendment, which was ratified in 1868. It was enacted in the aftermath of the Civil War, in order to ensure that Southern states could not reimpose the basic discriminatory legal architecture of slavey now that the slaves had been freed. Obviously, that wasn’t respected in practice, and for nearly a hundred years the Supreme Court refused to uphold the 14th Amendment. Only in the late 1940s did the courts “unbury” the 14th Amendment, which played a crucial role in the various cases that gave the Civil Rights Movement and the end of segregation the legal backing of the federal courts.

One of the most important parts of this amendment is what’s known as the Equal Protection Clause, which reads:

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.

What this means in practice is that a law must be applied equally, and legal privileges cannot be denied to people based on gender, race, or as Romer v. Evans made clear, sexual orientation. In 1967 the Supreme Court made absolutely clear that “marriage” was one of these laws that must be equally applied when it struck down state bans on interracial marriage in the Loving v. Virginia decision:

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

Given this strong legal precedent, it seems obvious to most of us that Prop 8 is a straightforward violation of the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause and is therefore unconstitutional. Conservatives like Ted Olson agree, since they understand that the Constitution sets out limits that neither governments nor voters can transgress, without directly amending the Constitution itself.

Instead, Saunders believes that it’s perfectly acceptable to ignore the Constitution and enable discrimination against same-sex couples. But she realizes she can’t come right out and say that, not in the San Francisco Chronicle. So instead she decides to dismiss and belittle the anti-Prop 8 arguments and the very real discrimination and suffering being experienced as just mere “feelings”:

Plaintiff Kristin Perry of Berkeley testified in the first week of trial, “The state isn’t letting us be happy.” You know, that’s the way a teenager talks – yet it now rates as evidence in Walker’s court.

As we know, Perry’s testimony was about much more. But why would Saunders zero in on that statement? Because she believes she can use it to discredit the case against Prop 8 as being based on something that isn’t serious, isn’t legitimate. It’s a typical conservative attack on “bleeding heart” liberals who Saunders frames as somehow being weak, unserious, and therefore not worth listening to. Saunders ignores the constitutional issues because as the precedents show quite clearly, there is no constitutional case to be made in defense of Prop 8.

Saunders also tries to dismiss Ted Olson’s arguments:

But he did not make a strong “conservative” case, as he claimed. While many conservatives support same-sex marriage, a conservative should want to debate the possible consequences of upending family law. A good conservative doesn’t push a court to impose a ruling that shreds states’ rights, as well as the right of Californians to govern themselves.

This misses Olson’s point almost entirely, which was that same-sex marriage is an example of wider acceptance of marriage’s place in a stable and desirable society. But then Saunders’ conservatism is of the radical sort, where the Constitution and basic principles of equality are less important than keeping your ideological opponents down. While David Boies and Ted Olson are emphasizing the primacy of the US Constitution, Debra J. Saunders and right-wingers like her are instead emphasizing their ongoing battle with progressives. She believes politics trump rights and constitutional principles.

Needless to say, we don’t agree. But don’t just nod your head in agreement. Let her know what you think of her column by writing a letter to the editor to the Chronicle. Don’t let her claims go unanswered.

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135 Comments

  • 1. Ed C  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:14 am

    I feel like I have just read a draft of Judge Vaughn's ruling! If he bases his decision on Romer and Loving v Virginia, it certainly invite Kennedy to take his rightful role as the deciding vote overturning Prop 8. Yes!

  • 2. Loren  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Done!

    "Debra J. Saunders argues that overturning Proposition 8 would 'shred… the right of Californians to govern themselves'. Yet Proposition 8 itself removed the ability of thousands upon thousands of Californians to govern, or in other words decide, when and how they would get married. For a self-proclaimed conservative, she seems to favor an awfully invasive government."

  • 3. David Crane  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Done!

    "I've just finished reading Debra Saunders' opinion piece about the prop 8 trial, and am writing to say that it hardly qualifies as an opinion. The idea that a trial which has attracted such high-caliber lawyers is only about feelings is as preposterous as it is snide to sneer at the fact that feelings are involved with the topic of marriage. But if she is going to cherry pick quotes, she might at least give some analysis instead of blather. "The state isn't letting us to be happy" is clearly meant to evoke the rhetoric of the Declaration of Independence – as anyone with a teenager's critical abilities could recognize."

  • 4. truthspew  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:24 am

    Yeah, I touched on this issue with my state Senator this evening. He understands that it is a constitutional issue (RI Constitution Article 1 Section 2).

    I think we may win at this level, it's not looking like the Prop8 folks have too many witnesses and most of their points have been debunked already. I'm sure this is where we'll see the Olson and Boies team shine though, as they'll demolish the arguments set forth by their experts with more flair and polish than the idiots representing the defendants.

  • 5. michael  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:26 am

    Giving women the right to vote is just about "feelings"

    Abolishing slavery is just about "feelings"

    Allowing interracial marriage is just about "feelings"

    Freedom to practice one's religion is just about "feelings"

  • 6. Sean  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:28 am

    Just sent the editor a little letter of my own:

    "I found Debra Saunders' article on the current Prop 8 trial to be not only biased and factually incorrect, but also rude, disrespectful, and bigoted. For her to argue that Prop 8 should stand simply because of voter majority is to forget about such landmark cases as Brown v. the Board of Education and Loving v. Virginia, both of which overturned discriminatory acts supported by the majority of citizens. The majority is not always right, and that's a fact. If not for landmark trials such as the one currently going on in California, interracial marriage would still be illegal, women would not have the right to vote, and segregation would still be in place. How wrong could it possibly be to allow homosexuals the same legal rights that heterosexuals have been enjoying for generations? We claim to be a nation of liberty and equal opportunity. Isn’t it time we started putting our money where our mouth is?"

  • 7. Sheryl  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:42 am

    Excellent letter.

  • 8. Ronnie  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:50 am

    Correction Sean they demand that we pay taxes but not have all the rights that those taxes afford us unless we live our lives the way they want us to live.

    I say to them, "you people pay my rent, my bills, pay for food and clothes, and you do all the hard work that I had to do in order to to pay those taxes…..then maybe just maybe I will allow you to force me to be Christian and tell me how to live my life.. but until then you far left wing, hypocritical, speculative, ignorant, naive, disrespectful, un-compassionate, inconsiderate, un-american, inhuman, childish, immature, incoherent, uneducated, paranoid, delusional, selfish, greedy, spoiled, un-evolved, uninvolved, unsociable, unconstitutional, unethical, immoral, contradictory, cowardly, bling, deaf, and dumb, prejudice, bigoted, P.O.S. troglodytes can SHUT THE FU<K UP!!!

    That's what I say…..LMAO!

    NO TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION!

  • 9. Richard W. Fitch  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    Gross bigotry can never be penetrated by logic.

  • 10. David Crane  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    I just noticed that Saunders' piece basically parrots what Pugno wrote in his "week two wrap-up" over at protect marriage dot com. Not exactly surprising, but still.

  • 11. Joe Decker  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    This. Providing facts to conservatives that violate their preexisting prejudices simply hardens their prejudice.

    The science for this little dose of cynicism is right here: http://www.duke.edu/~bjn3/nyhan-reifler.pdf

  • 12. Sean  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Sheryl: Thanks!

    Ronnie: I assume you mean far RIGHT wing…? Regardless, you're absolutely correct. This is taxation without representation by definition.

  • 13. Richard  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:31 pm

    I live in Hope Mills, North Carolina, but if someone who is in the FB Prop 8 Trial Trackers group will go to that group and post an email address, I will CHEERFULLY write a letter to the editor about this piece of garbage that passed itself off as responsible journalism.

  • 14. Ronnie  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    LMAO!..you're right i meant Right….I'm sorry I had that left handed thing in my head….and I also miss spelled Blind…lol……. my rants get mixed up sometimes……LOL!

  • 15. Glenn I  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Years ago – 15? 20? – when Debra Saunders first began writing a column for the SF Chron I was a reader & subscriber (or, rather, my mother was). Saunders was a voice in favor of equal rights for gay people, at the time. When she wasn't writing in favor of equal rights I could detect a rightward lean, but, you know, this was before the internet and there was only so much news you had available to read, so I read her. Gradually her writing began to lean farther & farther into the crazy, no doubt following her sorority pledge, the Republican Party. It's been years since I bothered reading her nasty ravings.

  • 16. Richard W. Fitch  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    I think I misunderstood your comment earlier.

    Saunders, Debra
    Editorial Writers, OpEd, Insight
    Columnist

    dsaunders@sfchronicle.com

  • 17. Mr. HCI  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    My letter to SFGate:

    re: Federal court has become the new feelings forum

    Why does Ms. Saunders "feel" the Constitution does not apply to all U.S. citizens? Does she think Amendment XIV applies only to the heterosexual ones, rather than to "any person within its jurisdiction?" The denial of marriage to same-sex couples "abridge[s] the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States" and "deprive[s] [homosexuals] of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law."

    If either side is about "feelings" rather than the founding principles of our nation, it is opponents of same-sex marriage, who trample the rights of others and spit on the Constitution.

  • 18. J. Stone  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    A couple nights ago I reread the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Romer v. Evans. There's a lot of encouraging language in the Court's opinion. One of the things I found most interesting, though, was the dissenting opinion written by Justice Scalia and joined by Justice Thomas and the late Justice Rehnquist. Scalia's argument relied almost entirely on the Supreme Court case Bowers v. Hardwick, that said states could criminalize homosexual activity. I can only hope that, since the Court overruled Bowers v. Hardwick in its decision of Lawrence v. Texas, Justice Scalia will be the first to reaffirm the principle articulated in Romer v. Evans. Or does he consider himself bound to follow only those precedents he personally agrees with?

  • 19. Ronnie  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    Let's try this again since my left handed rant got mixed in with my right wing rant….maybe I should stick to keeping this site to one screen…..lol

    Correction Sean they demand that we pay taxes but not have all the rights that those taxes afford us unless we live our lives the way they want us to live.
    I say to them, “you people pay my rent, my bills, pay for food and clothes, and you do all the hard work that I had to do in order to to pay those taxes…..then maybe just maybe I will allow you to force me to be Christian and tell me how to live my life.. but until then you far right wing, hypocritical, speculative, ignorant, naive, disrespectful, un-compassionate, inconsiderate, un-american, inhuman, childish, immature, incoherent, uneducated, paranoid, delusional, selfish, greedy, spoiled, un-evolved, uninvolved, unsociable, unconstitutional, unethical, immoral, contradictory, cowardly, blind, deaf, and dumb, prejudice, bigoted, P.O.S. troglodytes can SHUT THE FU<K UP!!!
    That's what I say…..LMAO!
    NO TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION!

  • 20. paula  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    i think scalia and thomas pretty much do whatever the hell they want.

    i sometimes feel like supreme court hearings are almost pointless, because everyone can usually predict what the vote will be (nearly always 5-4 these days).

    i don't think the right wing of the court is interested in hearing the arguments… i think they go into it with their minds made up.

    a sorry state of affairs.

  • 21. Ron Longo  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Check out this back-and-forth between Saunders and me this morning (read from the bottom up). She actually thinks that the CA Supreme Court never granted the right to marry! As this goes to prove, ignorance and bigotry go hand-in-hand.

    ********************

    You never heard of the the Re:Marriage case? That established it.

    Ron

    ********************

    On Jan 24, 2010, at 7:59 AM, Saunders, Debra wrote:

    It clearly was not established.

    DJS

    ********************

    On Jan 24, 2010, at 6:05 AM, Ron wrote:

    No good. The truth is that everyone who voted yes on 8 DOES hate LGBT people; if they think they don't they are delusional. Nobody can vote to take away an ESTABLISHED CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT from a small minority group without being hateful. It's that simple.

    Ron

  • 22. Ann S.  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    There are conservatives with whom I can disagree almost all of the time and still respect. George Will comes to mind. And Ted Olson, of course!

    Saunders is definitely not one of those. I often read her column to see what "the other side" is saying, but I cannot respect anything about what she writes. It's generally petty, snide, and juvenile. She includes the facts only selectively and fails to analyze her subjects except on the most superficial of terms.

    The Chronicle apparently feels it needs a token conservative columnist, but I wish they would carry someone who I could respect while disagreeing with. Saunders is not that columnist.

  • 23. Ann S.  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    Love,
    Ann

  • 24. Philip Locke  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    Here's mine:

    "I just read with disgust Debra Saunders column "Federal court has become the new feelings forum". Her column was insulting and bigoted and should have no place in a major newspaper — particularly in San Francisco! The column seems to be drawn mostly from defense counsel Andy Pugno's daily summaries, and contains just as much bias and distortion of the facts inside the courtroom. Prop 8 supporters are taking advantage of the lack of cameras in the court and telling lies about what's going on in the trial and what the case is really about. The truth is that Prop 8 was an unfair stripping of the rights of a minority by a simple majority vote. That's not American democracy, it's fascism."

  • 25. Roger  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    "That's the way a teenager talks" is higlighted on the Chronicle's webpage. Obviously she feels this is especially telling, but all it does is reveal her disdain for teenagers. Doesn't she realise that the voting age in California is 18, which means that the state regard plenty of teenagers as mature enough to vote?

    Then, her eleventh paragraph opens with "My fear: that someday a judge will recognise polyamourous marriages…." and she constantly uses weasel words like "force through the courts".

    She herself is arguing on the basis of her own emotions, cherry-picking those facts that reinforce them and ignoring others, such as the fact that 6,401,482 people actually voted against Proposition 8 and who aren't under any obligation to shut up becaise she tells them to.

    It is tempting to say, "how like a woman!" But that might hurt her feelings, so I shall refrain…

  • 26. Juli  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    Um….hasn't she ever heard of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?" Sound like more teenage talk?

  • 27. Linda  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Better phrase would be, 'How like a BIGOT!"

  • 28. Cat  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    From the article:

    <cite>My fear: That someday some judge will recognize polygamous marriages lest a family in Berkeley feel unhappy or because anti-polygamy laws discriminate on the basis of religion. If the no-on-Prop. 8 argument prevails, why not?</cite>

    Of course Debra Sauders is being provocative, but I think she has a point there. Don't forget one may learn more from an enemy than from overly agreeing friends.

    Although personal stories and feelings are very important, it is crucial that they (including the fear and ignorance based opinions of Mr. Tam) are translated into strong legal arguments that convince the judge (and supreme court judges). I am afraid it will take nothing less than a brilliant closing argument that builds the legal foundation from all the presented evidence to win the case. I'm glad that Olson & Boies seem to be up to the task.

  • 29. michael  |  January 24, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    What pisses me off about this whole "the majority of Californians voted"- B.S. is the population of CA is around 37 million people. If you add the damn voters both the pro and con you still do not have the majority of Californians.

  • 30. misken  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:18 pm

    I agree. Citizens United v. FCC really made me sad. So did Hollingsworth v. U.S. District Court. There were all 5-4, the latter on a stupid non-idealogical thing.

    I have no idea how Thomas and Scalia ever got confirmed.

  • 31. misken  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Haha, what ignorance. Classic among conservatives.

  • 32. Leslie in Concord  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    I was hoping that someone had that citation handy. Thanks, Joe!

  • 33. SF Bay  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    My letter to the editior:

    Debra J Saunders Sunday column re: the Prop 8 trial trivialize the facts of the case. She picks exactly one sentence by one person to argue that this case is about feelilngs. She couldln't be more wrong; except of course that is her goal. This case revolves entirely around the equal protection clause of the US Constituion. She would do well to take two minutes to read it. I'd say I'm disgusted, but then I would be climbing into the mud pit with her. I won't do that. Everyone please, read the transcript and learn what this case is actually about.

  • 34. Leslie in Concord  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    The two of you apparently disagree on what "established" means — I don't think Debra was ignoring the court case, I think she was saying that the vote on Prop 8 was a vote on whether it was an established right and we lost, therefore the right the court found was temporary not established.

    Not that I agree with her — I liked the comment in court when Walker queried someone on this point about whether the right was actually there to begin with and the answer was, Yes it was there and the court decision was recognizing a previously unrecognized but valid right.

  • 35. Leslie in Concord  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    I wonder if she is also afraid that one day a judge will legalize opium dens now that the court has decided that possession limits on medical marijuana are illegal? The "slippery slope" arguments are a prime example of the kind of faulty logic that Debra excels at. As you've pointed out, we need to stay on target here, talk about what is actually at stake and refuse to get drawn into the "what next" arguments.

    Most same-sex marriage laws are worded as "two people". It's going to take a lot of time and social change before the "two" is challenged in any serious way no matter how good the legal arguments on that issue may be. Debra (and I) will probably be long past caring when that happens, although I fully believe it will.

  • 36. Kay Moore  |  January 24, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    A somewhat blunt and inelegant way of expressing herself aside, Sanders has a very valid point based in history and legal trends. The blunt fact of the matter is that the celebrated Loving v. Virginia was written to emphasize that marriage was a right because in the form that Loving as his spouse wanted to practice it, it was a consistent worldwide tradition going back thousands of years. The court properly determined that racial animus, essentially a negative emotional reaction to the prospect of a black and white couple, was insufficient justification to break a chain of tradition that consistent over that length of time. Non-heterosexual forms of marriage, however, have no chain of tradition and are disqualified by the standard used to establish marriage itself as a constitutional right.

    Moreover, the Swiss Army knife nature of the "equal protection" clause is clearly not meant to enforce the concept that if a law grants one person privileges pursuant to them meeting certain conditions, it must provide those privileges to every applicant irregardless of their willingness to fulfill those conditions. If it could be applied in this manner, one could rationally argue that the Aid to Families of Dependent Children (AFDC) welfare program should be extended to every citizen because to forbid aid to a citizen who lacks dependent children denies them the equal protection of the law that grants this financial help. How is this really different than saying that to deny the title of marriage to a couple that has no intention of, or ability to, meeting the legal prerequisites denies them the equal protection of a law giving that privilege to those that qualify via traditional marriage? Ultimately, the 14th Amendment provides no legal refuge for the wholly emotional argument that gay couple are unequal unless they can call their unions "marriage" as a matter of law.

    Finally, the ultimate end of what the anti-8 people are trying to achieve is an unlimited right without ceiling or floor. Once you resort to fiat, under what principle or authority do you make a case for limitation? The quote that Cat highlights above is precisely right: what rational allows someone to say that one traditional definition is invalid because it denies what is (laughably) called a "human right" for any dedicated couple to marry but the traditional definition limiting the marriage to two is valid? Why isn't a right to marry as many men or women you want as sacrosanct as the right to marry a man if you're a man or woman if you're a woman? For that matter, why isn't a right to call any partnership of any sort "marriage" as sacrosanct? How is any official supposed to rationally determine whether the two college frat boys that decided to get "married" to get at a gold mine of thousands of benefits are a dedicated couple or not? The answer is that once you invalidate the prevailing standard for determining whether legally designate a union as "marriage" and then demand that such an invalidation be backed by the fiat of a judicial minority, there is no limit. This unlimited right danger isn't a characteristic of any previous struggle for civil rights; to equate this with all of those is to cheapen previous principled struggles for equality.

  • 37. JonT  |  January 24, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    Oh snap! :)

  • 38. Roger  |  January 24, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    Maybe, Linda — but tradition (that which is being so ardently defended by some parties in this case) has always held that one of the differences between the sexes is that women speak more from their emotions than men do.

    So that a man is more likely to say "I think that …" or "I believe that…" and a woman to say "I feel that…" or "I fear that…" and to invoke "feminine intuition", a quality in which men are held to be lacking.

    I think there is an element of truth in this, though of course it is not a matter of polar opposites; and it is a moot point whether gayness blurs the distinction. (Are gay men more in touch with their "inner femininity" than straight men and the converse with women? I think we might be.)

    Anyway, Vive la différence! — but Madame Saunders is arguing in the traditional straight- female mode. All emotion — her emotions — with logic at a discount.

    Let us hope that Judge Walker places a greater value on logical argument than she does..

    Of course she is bigoted, too!

  • 39. Roger  |  January 24, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    According to Wikipedia 79.42% of eligible voters voted in this instance, which is apparently regarded as a pretty good turnout by American standards. That leaves some 3, 640,000 eligible voters who didn't care enough one way or another to bother voting, and it's a bit rubbery to count them as would-have-been yes voters.

    But even if you allow that — to get a total of some 7, 650,000 yes votes, it's as dishonest as can be to spin that as a majority of Californians having sed yes to 8.

    Even the total number of eligible to vote doesn't come to such a majority — it's 17,380,000 out of a population of 37,000, 000. Rather less than half.

  • 40. David Crane  |  January 24, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    You know, I think there is something to your argument, as I understand it. Anti-prop 8 people should articulate why you can't insert any class of people into their arguments and not have them be equally valid. Though, to be fair, the laws as they stand accommodate any number of classes of people that were probably never intended to be covered.

    I strongly disagree, however, with the last sentence of your post. For one, I happen to believe that this is a 'principled struggle for equality.' Because I believe that, I have to look for legal precedents in order to argue my case. I CAN'T MAKE A LEGAL ARGUMENT WITHOUT LEGAL PRECEDENT. That, essentially, is my objection to any voice seeking to disassociate the gay civil rights movement from earlier ones. Yes, there are differences. But, thankfully, the legal rhetoric of eariler civil rights movements is broad enough to apply here.

  • 41. J. Stone  |  January 24, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    "[T]he Swiss Army knife nature of the 'equal protection' clause is clearly not meant to enforce the concept that if a law grants one person privileges pursuant to them meeting certain conditions, it must provide those privileges to every applicant irregardless of their willingness to fulfill those conditions."
    —————
    I would agree, Kay, so long as the conditions being imposed have some rational basis. The question here is whether the condition that you have to be straight to get married makes sense. If it doesn't–if there's no good reason why gay people shouldn't be allowed to get married–then the condition imposed by Prop 8 serves no purpose and should be lifted.

    Who gets to decide the matter? In America, it's the courts. In most cases, a court will accept any plausible rationale offered in defense of a law. However, where the right denied by the law's conditions is especially important, or where the the group disadvantaged by the law has historically had its rights disregarded by the social majority, the proffered rationale is subjected to closer scrutiny.

    In other words, where there's nothing to suggest that anything inappropriate is going on, the judicial review is fairly relaxed; but where the stakes of the game are elevated, and especially where there's a track record of unfair treatment of the very people singled out by the law as written, justice demands that the courts take a more careful look. That is all that has been going on in Judge Walker's courtroom.

  • 42. Roger  |  January 24, 2010 at 6:11 pm

    Your argument, my dear, is circular. Same-sex couples don't meet the legal requirements for marriage only because the law currently specifies that only mixed-gender couples may marry.

    They do (or may) meet the other legal requirements, like being of eligible age, not being already married, and not being too closely related by blood. Are there any others? As I undertand it, neither fertility nor proven willingness to procreate are legally required, howver desirable some people may consider them to be.

    And that some people may abuse the privileges granted by a particular law isn't germane. American conservatives stoutly defend their constitutional right to have guns, yet guns are frequently used to commit crime.

    The granting of aid to families with dependant children is not a comparable case. The point of the law is to assist the dependant children; if no such exist in a particular case then the law does not apply to it.

    And, sorry dear, polygamy is a red herring. Gay people aren't demanding it, and they will be no more likely to demand it when they are allowed to marry than African-Americans have done now that they are allowed to marry white people.

    I would take exception to this glib statements about unlimited rights. You forget that this Consitiution that you claim to so revere rests on armed rebellion against the legally established government (indeed the God-appointed government, as was universally believed) under which Americans had lived for centuries.

  • 43. JonT  |  January 24, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    Well. A civil, reasonable post from the opposition. Sweet! :)

    I won't waste time arguing the 'traditional' definition of marriage throughout human history, since that's already been done to death. Even today, in various cultures, marriage is not always about one man and one woman.

    In "Loving vs. Virginia", he loved her, and she loved him. The fact that they were different races made it illegal for them to get married. The Court determined that racial bigotry was an insufficient reason to prevent them from doing so. (Can you tell that I'm not a lawyer yet? :)

    The bible said it was wrong. More than 70% of the American public said it was wrong. The Court disagreed. Things change.

    I did want to comment on a couple of your other statements:

    "Moreover, the Swiss Army knife nature of the "equal protection" clause is clearly not meant to enforce the concept that if a law grants one person privileges pursuant to them meeting certain conditions, it must provide those privileges to every applicant irregardless of their willingness to fulfill those conditions."

    I must admit, it took a little time to parse this. Perhaps what you don't understand is that this trial is about changing the 'conditions' under one can be married (IE: allowing LGBT into the party). It is not about removing all conditions, nor is it an attempt to provide a mechanism in which conditions can be disregarded. That is, if I understood what you were saying here.

    "Finally, the ultimate end of what the anti-8 people are trying to achieve is an unlimited right without ceiling or floor. "

    Really? You believe the goal here is to remove all restrictions on who/what can be married? Therefore, should the Supremes decide in our favor, I can then get married to my houseplant? Is that what you *really* believe this trial is about?

    And lastly:

    "How is any official supposed to rationally determine whether the two college frat boys that decided to get "married" to get at a gold mine of thousands of benefits are a dedicated couple or not?"

    First, I dig the scare-quotes around "married". Thanks :)

    Second, I'm no marriage expert (being gay, and therefore denied the right to marriage after all :), but even if we were talking about a man and a woman, it is *not* the official's job to "rationally determine whether the two… are a dedicated couple or not". Dedication (or the official's perception thereof) is completely irrelevant.

    Didn't Brittany Spears get married to her school chum on a whim? It lasted about 50hrs I believe? Yeah, those sure are some stringent requirements regarding 'dedication'. AFAIK, all that's required to get married currently is that: 1) you are not already married, 2) the marriage is between a man and a woman, and 3) they are both of legal age. Did I miss something?

    This trial is ultimately about changing rule number 2 to allow LGBT people to marry as well. That's what this is about. Not polygamy, bestiality, incest, houseplant-rape, or any of that other crap your side keeps trying to tie the desire for SSM rights to.

    Anyway, goodnight!

    XXX OOO

  • 44. Lymis  |  January 24, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    Equally important, Scalia wrote in his dissent to Lawrence that if there was no governmental right to criminalize sodomy, there was no possible impediment to allowing gay marriage.

    While he wrote that as a bad thing and a reason not to rule on Lawrence the way they did, it will be fascinating to see if he holds to his own professed principles.

  • 45. Lymis  |  January 24, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    I am reminded of my friend and her medical situation.

    She has a seizure disorder (finally successfully diagnosed and being treated!), that evaded diagnosis for years. She was subject to seizures on short notice, and blackouts and symptoms that mimicked a stroke (inability to speak, unable to recognize people) for up to an hour. Luckily, she could tell the events were coming on in time to be safe, pull over the car, call someone, etc.

    At one point, one of the doctors asked how she felt about it. She had to drive but couldn't be sure she wouldn't get stuck somewhere by the side of the road unable to speak. It was screwing up her job, and her relationships, and so on. She told him it was scary, and she was worried, and confused why they couldn't diagnose it.

    So the clown (a cardiologist) wrote in her chart that she had an anxiety disorder. Because of that "diagnosis" her treatment (and insurance coverage) was set back for years.

    Damn right we have strong feelings about this. We are citizens, taxpayers, and human beings. We have families. We are going to be old someday. We have to spend huge amounts more for far less of the protections and benefits that everyone else takes for granted.

    The fact that it makes us mad, makes us sad, makes us tired, and sometimes bitter is only natural – and in no way makes what we are mad and tired of any less real.

  • 46. lsfoster  |  January 24, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    Too true. I'm doing my best over here.
    http://bit.ly/7pdfZ4

  • 47. Lymis  |  January 24, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    Yeah, and those frat boys are going to have to get divorced before they can marry anybody they might be attracted to.

    Sure, there will be some idiots who do it to make a stupid point, only to discover what they've done to themselves.

    There will be others who get married for perfectly valid, if non-standard, reasons that don't involve sex, and they are welcome to.

    There's not going to be any kind of run on straight same-sex marriages any time soon.

  • 48. evenevan  |  January 24, 2010 at 11:55 pm

    Ronnie, if you feel that way, we should talk about you helping us out with voting rights in the District of Columbia! 😉

  • 49. Faith W.  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:14 am

    I guess there is concern that if same-sex marriage is allowed, all of us might start running amok with demands for rights! Uh oh. Next thing you know, gasp, we might start talking about human rights, such as the right to health care, K-adult education, child care, food, shelter, etc. OH NO!!! Can't have that. We need up-by-the-bootstraps FREEDOM- to starve, be uneducated, homeless, etc. Now that's an inspirational vision we can all get behind (note sarcasm). The conservatives offer such a miserly and hollow vision of freedom that I'm surprised it still maintains a following among portions of the working class. The fact that the same few get to experience the fullness of this "freedom" while others don't seems lost on the followers. I would think one would get suspicious, but it's a slow wake up call.
    I'm for a bigger, more inclusive vision of freedom.
    How about a concept of freedom such as freedom from discrimination, want, hunger, desperation, and lack of medical care. This starts with an acknowledgment of the freedom to determine and/or embrace one's sexuality. Same-sex marriage is part of this bigger definition of freedom.

  • 50. Rebecca  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:21 am

    Michael,
    You are using logic and common sense. Such things are incomprehensible by those on the right.

    I wrote Ms. Saunders this weekend and told her that if she values "traditional" marriage so much then from this day forward she can no longer have credit in her name and she is now the property of her husband.

  • 51. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:33 am

    to even….what's going on in D.o.C. I thought things were copacetic there….. If you are responding to my actual right wing rant and not the rant I mixed up with left handedness then yes anything that I can do to help I will certainly do.

    The gov….has a one simple choice to make:

    Give us all the rights as OSM under a second class name and tax us less

    or

    Give us Egual rights under the same name and tax us the same as everybody else

    I suggest they take the latter, if they are really concerned about bringing America out of this recession and not sending the country into depression.

    Ladies am I right?…..lol

  • 52. Lain  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:35 am

    Whoa – straight female mode equals "all her emotion, with logic at a dIscount"?

    Ouch. I thought we were trying to be anti- baseless, harmful stereotyping here. I mean, that one goes way back. It used to end with, so, they shouldn't get the vote.

    Plenty of bigoted conservative men are making these same arguments. And plenty of allied straight women understand the reality of this case just fine, thank you very much.

  • 53. Rebecca  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:39 am

    They (those on the right) love to bring up the fact that they are called "Haters" and "Bigots" but the fact of the matter is, that's exactly what they are. I can't find another word for it. Can you?

    A perfect example is Cathi Herrod of the Center For Arizona Policy who recently wrote, "It's one thing to disagree on the issue of same-sex marriage. It's quite a different matter to label those of us — really the millions not only in California and Arizona, but throughout this country — who stand for marriage between one man and one woman as 'haters.' Mrs. McCain has effectively called all of us 'haters.' That surprises me. For those of us in Arizona who worked very hard to pass Prop. 102 in 2008, we're offended, we're disappointed and we're outraged."

    Let's take her words and put them in a 1967 perspective:

    "It's one thing to disagree on the issue of inter-racial marriage. It's quite a different matter to label those of us — really the millions not only in California and Arizona, but throughout this country — who stand for marriage between a white man and a white woman as 'haters.' Mrs. McCain has effectively called all of us 'haters.' That surprises me. For those of us in Arizona who worked very hard to pass anti-miscegenation in 1967, we're offended, we're disappointed and we're outraged."

    No matter how you slice it, still sounds like hate to me.

  • 54. Callie  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:50 am

    Well said, Sean! Bravo!

  • 55. Nick Griffin Miller  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:58 am

    Glad someone made that point-it was what ran thru my mind as soon as I read that she had written that sentence. (Well, that and "this woman shouldn't be trying to write for a newpaper like the Chron" of course..she is an insult to the intelligence of the readership)…now should she choose another venue she might actually shine.

  • 56. Callie  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:00 am

    So what if it's about feelings?

    It partly is about feelings as the more sensitive testimony of the likes of Ryan Kendall attests to. It IS about how we "feel" disenfranchised in our own country. It IS about how we "feel" our lives and relationships are disrespected and ignored and deemed irrelevant by a tyrannical majority. It IS about how we "feel" alienated and separated by faith leaders. Damn right it is about how we feel, and we shouldn't feel that way in the "land of the free and the home of the brave." We ARE Americans too and we "feel" it is our right to have equal protection of the laws and equal access to the institutions our fellow Americans have. By God, I have the right to my feelings and I'm damn tired of the people telling me that I don't have a RIGHT to feel anything about this. This is MY LIFE, MY RELATIONSHIP, and MY RIGHTS on trial. You better believe I have very strong feelings about that.

  • 57. Nick Griffin Miller  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:12 am

    Brava!

  • 58. Callie  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:21 am

    So, they get to be "offended, disappointed, and outraged" when someone shines a light on their bigotry, but we don't get to have any feelings whatsoever when one of the most relevant parts of our lives – our intimate relationship – is put on trial.

    They have rights to their feelings but we don't. Is that how it works?

    I guess it works that way if they don't even consider us human. In their minds, the evil spawn of Satan can't have feelings.

  • 59. R Lavigueur  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:25 am

    I'm no expert on marriage law in the United States, but its my understanding that it doesn't require any sort of proof that a heterosexual couple 'deserves' the right to marry or are dedicated enough that the marriage is likely to last. In fact, there seems to be an abundance of evidence that while most straight couples treat marriage seriously, a large portion do not. I don't see why its reasonable to assume that same-sex couples would be more likely to change that; especially since if we all just wanted the legal benefits of marriage we wouldn't be likely to complain about domestic partnerships.

    Marriage, however, is indeed a tradition. A tradition that has not remained consistant overtime save that it has always had social value and weight that other relationships do not. But we must remember an important fact. It is same-sex marriage, and not opposite-sex marriage, that is at issue here; which causes problems for the whole tradition arguement well beyond the question of how traditional the current definition of opposite sex marriage actually is.

    The same sex couples in this case have never argued that the marriage of two people of the opposite sex is offensive to them. Rather, the arguement is that restricting marriage to the opposite sex is harmful to same sex couples; because it restricts them from the economic benefits, but more importantly because it makes their relationships into something less meaningful, less valid, and less real than the relationships of a heterosexual couple. This opens the door to further discrimination, because it essentially says that the love of two people of the same sex is not as good or worth celebrating as the love between two people of the opposite sex. Since many of the supporters of proposition 8 actively believe this to be true but believe themselves to be just, it is hard for them to understand how this is discriminatory. To anyone outside that group, its not all that complicated.

    And then there's the other important consideration that flies in the face of arguements from tradition, and that is the fact that allowing same sex couples to marry in no way restricts, limits, discourages or changes the ability of opposite sex couples to marry. Marriage is not a commodity that is in short supply, and expanding the definition to include same-sex couples does not undermine the situation of opposite-sex couples. It is childish to want to deny other people things that have no bearing on your own life.

    Of course, maybe this really is a slippery slope and people will be marrying umbrellas within weeks of same sex marriage being (re)legalized. But I have a feeling that most same sex couples aren't going to spend their honeymoons in court fighting for the right to marry their dog and a couple extra husbands and or wives. Slippery slopes have a way of becoming less and less logical the further you take them.

  • 60. R Jay  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:31 am

    Saunders wrote in her article that, "If [Prop. 8 opponents] can convince Walker that the Prop. 8 people are haters, he may overturn the will of the majority of California voters."

    Well that's the entire point. There are times when the will of the majority MUST absolutely be overturned in order to protect a minority.

    I'm reminded of something Jefferson stated in his first inaugural address in 1801: "Bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will, to be rightful, must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal laws must protect, and to violate would be oppression."

    The place of the Courts in our federalist system exists for a number of reasons, one of which being that it must champion the rights of a minority against the occasional unjust will imposed by legislative and/or executive processes influenced by a majority.

    If the tables were turned and an amendment to the CA Constitution which upheld marriage equality for gay citizens was being challenged in Federal Court, it is foreseeable that Saunders would be a proponent of the legal process which she presently decries.

    What ultimately signals Saunders' lack of intellectual honesty is this non sequitur statement she makes about "unintended consequences": "My fear: That someday some judge will recognize polygamous marriages lest a family in Berkeley feel unhappy or because anti-polygamy laws discriminate on the basis of religion. If the no-on-Prop. 8 argument prevails, why not?"

    Key word: fear. Fear without substance or validation.

    She finally states that "a good conservative doesn't push a court to impose a ruling that shreds states' rights, as well as the right of Californians to govern themselves." Perhaps not, but a conscientious American DOES petition a court to overturn a majority decision of the people when that decision oppresses a minority.

    Saunders' failure is that she sees this as a singularly political battle of "conservative" versus "progressive" agendas rather than what it really is: an issue of fundamental human justice.

  • 61. fiona64  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:34 am

    In addition, there is the psychology of prejudice to consider: http://www.understandingprejudice.org/apa/english

  • 62. cytyger  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:35 am

    In your case for the equal protection clause, you give the example of AFDC. What you haven't included is the fact that the equal protection clause is not a catch all to say that the state must treat each and every individual the exact same way. There is precedence for allowing unequal treatment when the State can show they have a valid and just cause for the discrimination. In the case of AFDC the valid and just cause is the State's interest in helping and protecting children so they have a valid reason for not giving this aid to families without kids. In the case of marriage equality, there is no valid State interest in denying two people marriage based on their gender. It doesn't harm the State to allow it and as we've been seeing through this trial it actually helps the State by having more stable families.

    In your case about this opening the door to polygamy, you miss the fact that in those cases, the State does have an interest in the legal ramifications of those types of unions. One of the things that marriage confers is the right to make medical decisions for your spouse. In the case where someone has an even number of spouses who all get medical power of attorney, who gets the final decision on medical procedures when that person is incapacitated? What processes would have to be put in place to figure out how to divide a person's social security benefit between multiple spouses? What happens if one person wants to end the relationship to one of the people in the group but not another? The State has a very real and valid interest when it comes to polygamy. One that does not exist for gay marriage.

  • 63. fiona64  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:42 am

    Kay Moore writes: This unlimited right danger isn’t a characteristic of any previous struggle for civil rights; to equate this with all of those is to cheapen previous principled struggles for equality.

    Dear Madame:

    You seem to believe that civil rights are based solely on ethnicity, and that is incorrect. Civil rights are given to *all* people, and it disturbs me greatly to see my LGBT friends have to fight for what I have been given solely by virtue of being born straight.

    You are welcome to disagree with same-sex marriage; no one will force you to marry someone of the same sex, a child, a dog, a lamp or any of the other "slippery slopes" that you proposed.

    The real slippery slope, madame, is one you and many like you stubbornly ignore: now, any unpopular group's rights may be put up for a vote by a tyrannical (and dare I point out, temporary) majority. Which of your rights shall we put on the ballot, Ms. Moore?

  • 64. evenevan  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:05 am

    There's an ongoing battle for DC to have representation in Congress. We finally received the right to vote in Presidential elections years ago, but we do not have a vote in either house of Congress. There have been movements in Congress to give us a seat in the House (with one to Utah, of all places, to balance the Dem/Repub balance), but it's stalled year after year.

    DC uses the "Taxation without Representation" as the battle cry for our battle. It's even on our licence plates… which Mr. Obama refuses to use on his limo… (another matter entirely).

  • 65. Jon  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:50 am

    Saunders's opinions would be more interesting if she got her facts right.

  • 66. Bill  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:54 am

    "Saunders believes that it’s perfectly acceptable to ignore the Constitution and enable discrimination against same-sex couples."
    ___________________________________________

    Further than IGNORING the constitution, anti-gay heterosexuals are going WAY further than that.

    They are actually, via state-by-state referendum, carving their lgtb children right OUT of the Constitution.

    Can anyone explain that and how they reconcile that with themselves morally and spiritually?

  • 67. J. Stone  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:31 am

    Thank you for the Jefferson quote. That was amazing.

  • 68. Richard  |  January 25, 2010 at 4:10 am

    evenevan, would you like some help from a West Virginian transplanted to the Fayetteville/Ft. Bragg area of North Carolina? I uld not only gladly, but cheerfully come up there to help you. What, we are good enough to be o the DC police force openly, but we can't get married there yet? WTF! And yes, we need to have a senator and at least one congressman in the House for DC

  • 69. Colt  |  January 25, 2010 at 4:17 am

    So mad I can't even write coherently. I just felt like submitting a comment full of obscenities to the Chron, but that wouldn't really be helpful (just cathartic!) People like Saunders make me SO ANGRY!!!! Especially when they're polluting my beautiful liberal Bay Area by existing. *aggrieved sigh* Thank goodness for this lovely little (well, not so little) community here. You're all awesome.

  • 70. Richard  |  January 25, 2010 at 4:18 am

    Columnist Debra Saunders delivered what will likely go down as one of the most virulent and toxic attempts at intelligent writing in the Chronicle's history. She has no legal basis to object to Prop 8's overturning, so she resorts to belittling the emotions of the parties involved in that effort, ignoring the fact that it is emotion that's at the very core of the case… on BOTH sides. And then the fear mongering, by trotting out that right-wing chestnut, that legalizing same-sex marriage will lead to legalizing polygamy (in Berkeley! no less). I'm quite sure the irony of that statement, given the Mormon's role in the passage of Prop 8, was completely lost on Ms. Saunders.

  • 71. Roger  |  January 25, 2010 at 7:19 am

    To Lain, @ post 41: You're missing my point.

    In the article we are discussing, Saunders is conforming exactly to the antique stereotype of the emotional, illogical woman.

    She argues that the plaintiffs' case lacks credibility because it is based merely on their emotions and feelings. Fine — but she doesn't appear to realise that by that she foregoes making basing her counter-case on hers.

    Moreover, she herself is not averse to adducing stereotypes herself, notably that of the self-centred, empty-headed teenager — which she highlights to make sure her readers don't miss it.

    Why? And indeed, why drag the notion in at all? First, it seems to me, to discredit the plaintiff; and second, to show her readers how much more mature (and therefore more credible) she is.

    But it does neither. All it achieves is to admit stereotyping to the debate and thus to lay herself wide open to having stereotypes thrown back at her.

  • 72. John  |  January 25, 2010 at 8:21 am

    Done…

    "I have just finished reading the recent article by Debra Saunders concerning the Prop8 trial and I must admit that I am utterly appalled at the degree of imaginative falsification which can take place in such a short space. While it would be folly to indicate that feelings and emotions play no role in a case concerning marriage, it would be greater folly still to overlook the lengths upon lengths of constitutional and legal documentation which are the main focus of this case as Miss Saunders has done. Furthermore, indicating that this ruling would "shred states rights" and referring to the LGBT community as "teenagers" is nothing more than the angry rantings of a schoolyard bully wishing to keep attention away from the wrong he has done. In what way, I ask, is granting the right to an entire community the same as shredding their rights? To me this seems a contradiction erected in the hopes of dissuading the public from realizing that it was, in actuality, Prop8 which has shredded the rights of many. If you can answer this, Miss Saunders, perhaps then I will attest that you may sit at the grown-ups table for this discussion…perhaps."

  • 73. Loren  |  January 25, 2010 at 9:22 am

    They're going to print my letter!

    I'm bragging, I know. I'm so proud! Viva los Trial Trackers!

  • 74. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 11:30 am

    Indeed, the present civil rights laws cover classes and groups that the original authors of those laws couldn't have contemplated. But they cover these people by the consent of the majority who were brought to a realization of the deserving nature of those groups and accordingly enacted the changes in the laws. The right not to be enslaved as enacted by a majority in the form of an amendment. The right of women and those 18 and older to vote came into being in the same way. Until the Supreme Court officially announced the obituary, sodomy laws were gradually being phased out because they were pointless. The Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts were, as their name suggests, acts of a majority in agreement that something needed to be done. These laws all came to protect more people because a majority was convinced of the need by principled crusaders, not because these crusaders went to courts demanding that the protection be extended to them by fiat.

    The rhetoric is surely broad enough to apply however you like but there is the question of whether the application is valid. Earlier civil rights crusaders agitated for certain protections and were granted them because their wishes were of great import and no alternative means of gaining those protections existed. There is no alternative means of applying the title "marriage" to a homosexual union but multiple states have provided an alternative means of giving homosexuals all the legal powers, privilages, and rights given to a married couple. If you already have those legal protections, what do you gain by a title? Emotional satisfaction, certainly but also the legitimating of an union so titled. This is not an objective that the 14th Amendment can, or should, be used to enpower.

  • 75. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 11:40 am

    Well, J, doesn't that all depend upon who is considering the reason? To someone who supported Prop 8 and laws like it, that a person is homosexual is an extremely good reason to bar them from having their union legally designated "marriage." To someone who opposed Prop 8, that reason is horribly bad.

    As to who gets to decide the matter, it is actually the ever-shifting majority who is thus empowered; the courts exist to determine if the majority's decision crosses a higher legal line i.e. the federal (or state) Constitution, depending on their jurisdiction. The right to call a union marriage, however, is unimportant if an alternative legal means to get access to the same protections exists as it does in California, Oregon, and other states; that the majority has historically mistreated homosexuals has no legal bearing unless the particular matter involves some manner of implied or intended legal harm which, fortunately, isn't the case here.

  • 76. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 11:55 am

    That statement seems a tad meaningless, Roger… the only reason anything fails to qualifty under a law is that the law says it doesn't qualify. Now, the reason that the law is written to disqualify something is a totally different matter.

    The matter of the 2nd Amendment is irrelevant here. The interpretations of the 2nd Amendment do not reject the mechanism for determining its limits. If a court ever ruled that the utility of a particular weapon in defending oneself is irrelevant to the interpretation of the law, your analogy would apply.

    Polygamy is hardly an irrelevant argument intended to divert the discussion or distract from the overall point. Moreoever, I never said that polygamy is inevitable if there is gay marriage; that would be a slippery slope logical fallacy. I simply pointed out that the means by which advocates are trying to get gay marriage removes the strongest means by which to determine if polygamy is appropriate to enact: what society, as expressed by the majority, finds acceptable. When you rule that the majority's manifest standard is irrelevant to the legitimacy of a law, there is no substitute but constant and shifting fiat by the minority.

    Well, more like 1.5 centuries (the first settlement governed by the British crown was established 169 years prior to the revolution) but you're generally correct. I'm unsure of what that fact has to do with my supposedly glib statements about unlimited rights, however.

  • 77. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    While true, it has always been heterosexual even when it was polygamous or polymarous. The precise composition of the heterosexual union has varied constantly between various cultures but it hasn't deviated from that specific pattern. Even in cultures that are well-known for culturally approving of a young man being paired with an older man in a homosexual union for their education didn't condone the union being made permenant in the form of a marriage.

    Yes, I am extremely familiar with Loving v. Virginia; I had an exceptionally well-informed person explain its meaning and even the precedents going back to 1820 that it relied on. Quite an education that was.

    I know what the objective of the trial is; I'm looking beyond intent to effect.

    I don't believe that is the intent of the trial, no; the intent of the plantifs is extremely explicit. But I believe that the effect inherant to the best and strongest argument in behalf of the plantifs is the unlimited right without ceiling or floor. Since it makes the most sense for Olsen and Bois to use the most effective argument, I tend to combine intent and effect.

    Excuse me, Jon, but those were not "scare quotes" unless that's just some strange term for doubled quote marks. I used those quotes to designate "marriage" as the term that would apply to what I was discussing but to also convey that I disagreed with calling what I was referencing "marriage." If I was to discuss the terminology that a turn-of-the-century racist applied to blacks, I'd put the term in quotations in the same way for the same reason.

    Precisely my point: the official is expressly NOT there to make such a determination and this shouldn't change. But the frivilous use of marriage is normally restrained (but hardly prevented) by a set of rules, determined by a majority, limiting it to a couple of a certain age, marital status, and gender mix. Your side is set to remove the basis of all those rules: namely, that the majority determined them. The majority determined that marriage below a certain age was inappropriate and also that marrige between a certain gender mix or between people who are already married was inappropriate as wel. But you're set to say "Well, the majority shouldn't be the party determining these qualifications because a minority is being harmed." Gays are not the only sexually-related minority in existence and all of them have as much right to their notions as you have to yours. What, if not the majority's opinion, determines whose claims are legitimate appeals to equality and whose are fivolous? A judge? 3 judges? 5? Nine people in the end who determine who is married instead of 305 million people? This is hardly a fivolous point.

    Goodnight to you, Jon. :)

  • 78. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Yes, it is incorrect; it is also not what I believe nor is it what I said. Broadly speaking, just taking the United States, women, young adults, the impoverished, religious minorities, and racial minorities have all been involved in a struggle to have their civil rights legitimated and protected; these is the civil rights struggles I was referring to. I should also add that a "human right" is different than a "civil right": the first one is the expectation of every human whereas the second one is a right bestowed upon a citizen of the United States through the civil contract we call the Constitution. The US does not recognize all of what are called "human rights" because they are not contained in our civil contract. Some believe this should change; perhaps but it should be a majority of those covered by the civil contract who should alter it.

    I propose no "slippery slopes", Fiona. I did not allege inevitability or even unusual liklihood of one thing leading directly to the other.

    Actually, no unpopular groups' rights may be put up for a vote; what was voted upon in California and in other states was not a question of denying a right to a minority but whether to alter who may claim a certain title for their intimate union. Proposition 8 did not seek to invalidate the "marrige in all but name" level of California civil unions so it sought to deny no legal protections or rights. Your snide question about which of my rights I would see put to a vote therefore has no meaning although I would be perfectly happy if some bold soul managed to put the fiat-bestowed right to marriage on a ballot. I might even vote in opposition to the right.

  • 79. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    The "Second Bill of Rights" proposed by Roosevelt is a nice statement of principle and it is likely he believed in his idea. But there is no greater danger to freedom than to put its implementation into the hands of a minority whose objective is to increase the scope and depth of its own power. Who is in position to oppose a government who is the sole provider of their shelter, their food, their health, and their comfort? The only governments that have declared as their founding principle that everyone is guarenteed prosperity through the fiat power of that government presided over their subjects with a grisly smile and their hands dripping with the blood of those who opposed them. Yes, I'm engaging in shameless hyperbole but the nearest analogy to a citizen whose every need is provided by a powerful entity is a fetus whose survival is wholly dependent on the health of its mother–and her willingness to carry it to term.

  • 80. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    I can. It's called "holding a different point of view." It's worth noting that the ultimate victors in the 1960s civil rights struggles engaged in very little malicious name-calling and their leader is widely known to the present day for his beautiful appeal to human equality. What, other than victory, do you want your legacy to be? Occassions like these permit you the opportunity to answer that question: you can choose to be known in later years as the disciplines of Rev. Dr. King and Mohandus K. Ghandi who won great victories with very little malice… or can choose to be known another way. Granted, either way will gain victory but only one of those ways will make it something of which everyone, even your opponents, can be proud.

  • 81. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    Ah, but all of that assumes facts not in evidence. The Prop 8 majority is the group least-known for demanding that a court give them a victory that they couldn't get democratically. Did they threaten to run to a court when Referendum 71 passed in Washington? When civil unions were created in various states? When a clear majority chose to create other laws that upset them? If so, I have never heard of it. Funny how that works, isn't it?

  • 82. James  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    There's a chance my letter to the editor of the SF Chronicle could get printed as I recieved a call today from them asking permission. I also contacted my local tv news anchor and asked for local coverage of the trial. Hope to get updates from them also.

  • 83. Ann S.  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    Kay, you are quite wrong when you say this:

    "Actually, no unpopular groups’ rights may be put up for a vote; what was voted upon in California and in other states was not a question of denying a right to a minority but whether to alter who may claim a certain title for their intimate union."

    LGBT people had the right to marry in California before Prop 8, and now they don't. You can try to deny that this was not "denying a right to a minority", but that just doesn't hold up.

  • 84. Ann S.  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    You said: "The right to call a union marriage, however, is unimportant if an alternative legal means to get access to the same protections exists as it does in California, Oregon, and other states"

    Fine, you can have the alternative means and LGBT people can have marriage. That should settle it.

  • 85. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    Kay Moore I don't know whether to be annoyed or offended by your circular logic.

    Marriage is Marriage plain and simple….I don't give a flying Fu<k what tradition or history or the stupid bible says written thousands of years after the fact….You want to worship and invisible person go ahead but don't force me to follow those values through law.

    Civil unions are not equal and are NOT enforced.

    I pay just as much taxes as everybody else so give be my FU<KING marriage….granted I need to find a boyfriend first….but whatever!

    If the majority voted that all blondes are dumb and must either shave it all off or dye it would that be ok?

    If the majority voted that you jump of a cliff onto a rusty cross…..would you do?….I think not!

    The Majority was for the holocaust in Germany….hmmm could that be next on Bigot agenda?

    The Majority is a JOKE!

  • 86. Ann S.  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    They sued in DC to try to overturn the decision of the commission with jurisdiction over elections. They couldn't put the Council's vote to a referendum, so they sued to try to do that.

    Or does it only count in your mind if there's direct democracy? That flawed process that today's witness dislikes so much?

  • 87. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    Ann, Touche!

    Same sex marriage wasn't contrary to anything until after the fact. Same sex marriage was allowed, bigoted people didn't like it, so they added restrictions. And now their side has the gall to claim that WE are redefining it. Typical.

    Civil unions DON'T have all the rights and privileges of marriage–namely, they DON'T COUNT IF YOU CROSS THE STATE LINE!!! No federal recognition (another restriction added after the fact).

    I can just see it, "Hi, I'm Linda, and this is my…uh…civil unionee, Leslie." Huh???

    Marriage is the universal term for two people who have signed the contract committing themselves to each other.

  • 88. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:08 pm

    Kay, Kay, Kay—scolding us, now? Methinks you should take a look at all the propaganda your own side diseminated. Are you proud?

  • 89. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Oh, be offended all you like; it doesn't harm me and doesn't much bother me either.

    Oh, do tell… if marriage grants access to 2000 legal rights and privileges and a civil union grants access to those same 2000 legal rights and privilages, under what convoluted definition of the word is that not "equal"? Is it because they're dissimilar in the minds of the society at large, something that you cannot change with a judicial order? As far as the law is concerned, they are as equal as a marriage between two states that have different laws about age of marital consent.

    Yes, you do pay taxes just like everyone else. In California and many other states, you receive the same niceties as a heterosexual person who pays taxes.

    I appreciate that you're passionate on this subject, Ronnie, but don't be puerile; "if your friends jumped off a cliff would you do it too?" is the sort of silly argument you aim at a child. You gain no traction with arguing something to utter implausible absurdity.

    The majority is the power to the ultimate benefit of the minority. The subjects can only dissuade a tyrant with the sword; a majority can be appealed to and often is.

  • 90. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:30 pm

    No, Linda… scolding is something adults do to children. I'm relatively certain that none of you are children so scolding you would be incredibly condescending and rude, don't you agree? I'm appealing to you to use tactics appropriate to the immense dignity of your argument much as I would if this was a pro-8 grouping of folks.

  • 91. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    Yes, Ann S… I regard direct democracy where possible to be the most legitimate result for the reasons I outlined in my reply to David Crane above: all the classic great victories of civil rights in the United States grew directly from the consent of a majority so I support this method as the best way to gain YOUR goal as well.

  • 92. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    Ohhhhhhhhhh, I see. Yes, I saw that dignity in those videos that were shown in court this morning.

    Well, I think it's awfully nice of you to come on our site and share your wisdom with us. Wish we could do the same on your site; but golly, the comments are turned off. Aw, shucks!

  • 93. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    "LGBT people had the right to marry in California before Prop 8, and now they don’t. You can try to deny that this was not “denying a right to a minority”, but that just doesn’t hold up."

    It may not hold up if someone wishes to believe otherwise, Ann, but interpreting a law to be at variance with the state's constitution doesn't mean that something magically becomes a "right"… it just means that it isn't explicitly forbidden any longer. However, when the constitution was altered to clarify the meaning of the relevant passage, it reinforced an existing law without touching the one that gave homosexual couples access to all the legal benefits of marriage minus the right to a title.

  • 94. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    You can feel free to track down my LiveJournal and leave comments there if you really wish to, Linda, but there'd be nothing there for you to respond to since I don't discuss this issue there. I, however, don't have any site with the comments turned off.

  • 95. Ann S.  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    I don't think that you're familiar with the California Supreme Court ruling in 2008 which held that there was such a right. 18,000 couples exercised this right.

    The California Constitution was amended by Prop. 8 not to "clarify" but to take away rights.

    I'm done conversing with you. Have a nice evening.

  • 96. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    wrong again and I really want to say "Bigot"…oops i did

    If hetero couple gets married it is recognized everywhere…civil unions are not enforced everywhere and do not have all the rights in some places.

    My mother works in a catholic hospital but is the main hospital of the area….they still to this day do not recognize civil unions as legal…do a little research honey!

    My mom has forced the nurses to allow a man to so say goodbye to his HUSBAND (they were legally married).

    And notice people she did comment on the majority being for the holocaust just the fact that I pointed out how much of Ignorant B!T<H! she is!

    GOOD GOD WOMAN!….ooh that works there too

    The entire anti SSM argument is childish and absurd trying to force your incestuous religious beliefs on me through law that I pay for via my taxes.

    Get over yourself!

  • 97. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    You too, Ann. Good luck.

  • 98. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:44 pm

    Kay, you state:

    "Yes, I am extremely familiar with Loving v. Virginia; I had an exceptionally well-informed person explain its meaning and even the precedents going back to 1820 that it relied on. Quite an education that was"

    But you forget the fact I and others have mentioned previously, the majority of Americans were overwhelmingly against mixing the races in marriage. Did your 'exceptionally well-informed person' inform you about how unpopular this decision was among the American public?

    In your other replies (including your reply to my message), you keep saying majority, majority, majority. History is quite clear on how the majority can be wrong, as they most certainly are in this case, as they were in Loving V Virginia.

    And:

    "But I believe that the effect inherant to the best and strongest argument in behalf of the plantifs is the unlimited right without ceiling or floor."

    I still cannot understand how you make that leap. It's like saying that now that you can buy beer on Sunday, we can now lobby to drop the drinking age to 5. Hey, lets not stop there, let *require* children K-12 to start drinking beer every day. Eliminate drunk driving laws. Yeah, that's the ticket. If you really think that this is what this is all about – allowing me to marry my houseplant, then there's really no point in continuing to argue with you. Your logic is based on false assumptions.

    One last thing (at least for this particular thread :)

    "Excuse me, Jon, but those were not “scare quotes” unless that’s just some strange term for doubled quote marks. I used those quotes to designate “marriage” as the term that would apply to what I was discussing but to also convey that I disagreed with calling what I was referencing “marriage.” If I was to discuss the terminology that a turn-of-the-century racist applied to blacks, I’d put the term in quotations in the same way for the same reason."

    If I parse this right, you are equating the use of the term marriage as applied to LGBT as being equivalent to a racial epithet as applied to blacks? Really?

    At any rate, I have read your posts, and I appreciate their civility, but it is clear that your idea of what this trial is about has no basis in reality – IMO of course.

    Nighty-nite. :)

  • 99. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    The constitution was not 'altered to clarify the meaning' ..it was altered to restrict access.

    "My God, LGBT's are getting MARRIED!? Quick, make it so that's not legal anymore!!!"

  • 100. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    Sure you do; it's called protectmarriage.com–but I don't blame you for not wanting to claim it.

  • 101. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    Oh SNAP!

  • 102. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Oh, they are, are they? You must know… you're so good at insult that it proves your unique genius.

    "And notice people she did comment on the majority being for the holocaust just the fact that I pointed out how much of Ignorant B!T<H! she is!"

    Yes, Ronnie… get angry and call someone a bit<h while complaining that you're mistreated and spat upon. I'm impressed.

    "The entire anti SSM argument is childish and absurd trying to force your incestuous religious beliefs on me through law that I pay for via my taxes."

    You must also be psychic! You are dead certain I must be religious because…? Hmm… oh, I know! Because if I oppose your opinion it must be because I'm religious! I'm impressed, Ronnie.

  • 103. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Yes Kay, this is shameless hyperbole. All it tells me of is your fear. It says nothing that relates to the actual reality of this situation. :(

  • 104. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    "If I parse this right, you are equating the use of the term marriage as applied to LGBT as being equivalent to a racial epithet as applied to blacks? Really?"

    You misunderstood but I used a really weird example to make my point. What I was trying to say is that I was using what you called "scare quotes" to indicate a term that would be applied to the situation (two frat boys gaming the system by "marrying" to get tax and legal benefits) that I think inappropriate. If referring to a heterosexual pair getting together with the same cynical motivations, I'd have put marriage in quotations as well because I dispute the appropriateness of the term as applied to the situation. I apologize for the confusion.

    "At any rate, I have read your posts, and I appreciate their civility, but it is clear that your idea of what this trial is about has no basis in reality – IMO of course.
    Nighty-nite. :)"

    G'nite Jon. Be well; I appreciate your consideration in being civil in return.

  • 105. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    If it talks like a duck it must be a quack!

    POOOOOORRRR EVE!

    Just like your prop ha8te side says if you do not support prop ha8te you support the devil's work….

    Newsflash I don't believe in the devil either!

    Just because you say you may or may not be religious doesn't negate the fact that prop ha8te was passed based on religious beliefs and now there is evidentiary video flooding the internet to prove the disgusting vitriol of the whole Bigot agenda.

  • 106. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:05 pm

    Oh now, you have to admit that's a pretty safe assumption! Look at your 'arguments'….they're all straight off the websites–protectmarriage, NOM, ADF–granted, you have dressed them up a bit with your own syntax, but the premises are all the same.

    But…it has been entertaining; albeit not quite as much as the court proceedings today.

  • 107. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    Actually, this would be the first I've heard of that site, Linda. I was given the URL to this blog during a general discussion on the issue on a different board. Admittedly as less… tame discussion but a discussion nonetheless.

  • 108. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:12 pm

    True but I'm not a doctor and if Warner Brothers is right, ducks don't quack… they tell rabbits out despicable they are.

    I don't know who "Eve" is but I tentatively agree that she has been exposed to some manner of severe misfortune by which she deserves sympathy.

    I suppose it's "my side" in the sense that I'm arguing for the goal of Proposition 8, Ronnie, but I hardly sympathize with their demeaning tactics.

  • 109. Linda  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    Right…..you're on a prop8trialtracker site, and you've never heard of protectmarriage….right…..

    You do know this is in CA, right? And we're in a court case? And protectmarriage is a major player….?

  • 110. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:15 pm

    Well, Linda, that hardly says much. If you're opposed to Prop 8, you'll inevitably pose similar arguments to the official opposition and the same would happen if you're supportive of it.

    I imagine it has. If nothing else, I'm glad that I entertained you for a bit. :)

  • 111. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    OMG!…. now I know that Kay is not gay nor gay adjacent because she did not get the Bette Davis reference….. "GOOD GOD WOMAN"!

  • 112. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    As I just said, Linda, I came to this site from a completely different board which, interestingly enough, is primarily dedicated to discussing Star Wars. Moreover, I would have no reason to be aware of ProtectMarriage.com unless I was researching the opposition to gay marriage. I'm familiar enough with the opposition arguments that I hardly need the resources of a dedicated website to voice ones similar to them.

    Yes, I know this is in California. I know it's a court case. But ProtectMarriage.com is unfamiliar to me for the reason I just outlined.

  • 113. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    Kay said:

    "I’m appealing to you to use tactics appropriate to the immense dignity of your argument much as I would if this was a pro-8 grouping of folks."

    Kay, I am appealing to you to use logic and fact. Your arguments are full of hyperbole, and just downright false assumptions about what you believe to be the 'true goals' of this trial. The transcripts (official, court transcripts even) are available for you to read yourself.

    And to the others, I would discourage calling Kay names and insults. She has at least been civil in her arguments as circular, illogical, and sometimes maddening as they are. But it serves no purpose to become haters ourselves. I know its difficult, but please try :)

    So, uhm. Goodnight again Kay :)

  • 114. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    You didn't grasp that from the fact that I'm opposed to gay marriage? That implies some very strange things…

    "Gay adjacent"?

  • 115. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    Uhm… Again I point you to Loving V Virginia, and the overwhelming opposition of the 'majority' to this descision. It is true Kay – please stop glossing over that.

  • 116. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    Backhanded compliment aside, thanks for being a sweetheart, Jon. 'Nite. :)

  • 117. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    Gay adjacent means knowing anything that a gay person would know and would use to dramatize and bring humor to the statement in a clever and witty way.

    YAWN! you are boring!

  • 118. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    I never said that the majority is always and everywhere perfect, just that it eventually reached the correct conclusion by persuasion alone.

  • 119. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    LIES!………Move to strike!…….Sustained!

  • 120. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Yeah, that's a new right we are going to start demanding soon. We can't talk about it yet, it's classified by the Homosexual Agenda Agency (HAA!)

    See what I did there? :)

    By the way KAY, out of curiousity, where is this other board you were refereed from? Would love to see it :)

  • 121. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    Yes, I am incredibly boring. Also dust-covered and a bookworm.

  • 122. David Crane  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    Kay – Loving v Virginia, which extended the right to marry to interracial couples, was the result of court fiat, as I understand it – and I would certainly grant that those particular crusaders were principled. In fact, a far greater majority of Americans were opposed to interracial marriages at that time than are opposed to same-sex marriages now.

  • 123. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    It's an offshoot of the site StarDestroyer.net but I believe you need a username and password to get at many of the forums. But if you can't get at the forums, Jon, you simply MUST read the actual site. Before Darth Wong (the author's preferred board name), I didn't know that scifi could be approached so logically.

  • 124. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    Yeah, there were a couple of exceptions, David. But minor ones in comparison to the ones that weren't gained by that fiat. Marriage is certainly very important but the right to vote, the right to be free of ownership (ultimately established by a post-Civil War constitutional amendment), and the right to the protection of the law against violent racists is somewhat more vital in the grand scheme. I regret my lapse of memory, however.

  • 125. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    OMG!…..a space cadet from Tataouine!

    Luke!….I am a HOMO!

  • 126. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:39 pm

    hmmm the same defense witless …i mean witness Miller used………

    BAAAAAAAA!!!!!

  • 127. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    Dantooine, actually. The grass is always greener, you see.

  • 128. JonT  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    "… just that it eventually reached the correct conclusion by persuasion alone."

    Ahh but it didn't at all. The majority was left no choice in the matter – whites and blacks could get married, period, it became the law of the land. After a few decade people stopped giving a crap.

    That will hopefully happen here too as well. :)

    One can hope anyway.

  • 129. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:45 pm

    Hopefully. And even more hopefully, none of the hysterical predictions are right.

    I'd get a real kick out of getting an invite to the wedding of my friend and his mate from Florida, though. Just because it's him, I'm wagering he'll send it on stationary decorated with pictures of wolves. 😀

  • 130. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Oh christ on a cracker!

  • 131. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:47 pm

    I'm sorry but if you want that, you have to get some from the Catholics. I think their Communion food is a cracker…

  • 132. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    ummmm….ha….ha….ha…..note the sarcasm!

    Tataouine is an arabic name for a place in Tunisia, Africa the inspiration for George Lukas….where it is in fact still illegal to be Gay….

    just a little edu for you…..LOL!

  • 133. Ronnie  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    sorry George Lucas…I always get his named mixed up with somebody else

  • 134. Kay Moore  |  January 25, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Sarcasm duly noted.

  • 135. Sean  |  January 31, 2010 at 4:06 am

    Congrats!

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