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Author Topic: Prop 8 struck down.  (Read 18713 times)

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Offline kylie

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #250 on: August 17, 2010, 10:37:56 PM »
Quote from: fallen
Typically people don't talk about interracial couples or interracial marriage as much as a societal thing.
          That is pretty debatable.  Dalmage charts out plenty of talk in her book Tripping on the Color Line.  In many camps, Black women who date White men are labeled gold-diggers.  Whites who date Blacks are said to be doing it in hopes of experiencing "the jungle fever," or simply to take advantage of certain expected anatomical differences, but not for a "real relationship" etc.  Plenty of conservatives go on about alleged social decay with particular jabs at Black culture and derogatory claims about single urban mothers, which in the US are often code for supposed intrinsic evils of Black women.  Also: Interracial couples are also more likely to be funneled into living in mixed-race neighborhoods, neighborhoods more likely to be depleted of real estate value, strong schools, business investment, and social services.  Simply by marrying across racial lines, most people who do increase the chances that part of their time, politics, and assets will be spent fighting race issues (either for their own sake or for the sake of others they come to know).

Quote
When my sister dated minorities and eventually married a minority I don't think the interracial manner of their marriage even remotely entered into my thought process.
          The notion that one doesn't talk or think about a couple's race at all seems awfully unlikely to me.  Unless one lives in a political stream that insists civil rights have all been fought and won, and oh America is nothing but color blind now.  Nothing to see here.  The way I see it...  Eroticize it or celebrate it or criticize it, what have you...  But nary a thought?  As the saying goes, I'd have to be living under a rock. 

          By the way, you've also set up a neat non-event here.  Much like not claiming any critical opinion at all about race, you've kept apart from the marriage issue while at the same time claiming to deal with it.  If your sister had started dating another woman and expressed interest in marrying her, then what would you have done?  Would you have wished she would wait because you think society isn't ready yet?  Would you perhaps have told her, yes you can go to a state that allows it but don't expect to get all the same benefits and don't leave that state too often if you wish to keep what you do get -- that's just the natural course of generational change you'll have to wait for?  I guess from the rest, that's what you would say, but you haven't really spoken for that situation. 

Quote
At the time when it was a hot button social issue, yes interracial marriage was considered separate and different from traditional marriage. Typically as a society we use qualifiers to denote where something is different from the norm or non-traditional. We say "I ordered some Chinese food" because we want to be specific and typically "food" may not include "Chinese food". If you notice if you go order pizza typically you don't say "We ordered Italian food."
        We can just as probably say "pizza" so we don't confuse it with say, "chicken wings."  Many people also know that popular individual varieties, such as Chinese dumplings (jiaozi or what some label "pot stickers") are not seen as traditional American fare, but they don't say "Chinese pot stickers" every time they buy them.  The law does not says that either chicken wings, nor pizza nor Trader Joe's jiaozi "pot stickers" will not be treated as food in the eyes of the state.  Prop 8 was saying gay marriage will not be treated as marriage!  Nor has the fact that some ethnic restaurants are still regarded as more foreign than others, and are still often located in districts more prone to crime etc., prevented us from treating all of them as restaurants.  But it sounds like you want to keep gay marriage away as long as enough people mark out a difference.  Well to make this analogy make sense, you'd better start checking the labels on everything you eat very, very closely.  No imported ingredients, no ethnic for you.  Too many people still think they're different, too.  Especially when the economy is down and protectionist sentiment takes off among a vocal minority here and there.  Even if they are all arguing for different, illogical, ugly or inconsistent reasons, it's still not a hallowed consensus in favor of those foreign products.  So you'll just have to stay away from all that, too. 

Quote
Now-a-days in most parts of the country inter-racial marriage is considered an acceptable norm, and only in social and cultural groups where it is taboo is it referred to as such.
         I wouldn't deny that there is less public debate about interracial marriage, but I'd argue (and I already have, as have others) that wouldn't be the case if the state had not stepped in when there was plenty of conflict, and said you know what?  We just aren't going to do this.  Not that it stopped so much local politicking and prejudice from continuing to cloud the topic.  Even today.

Quote
Perhaps over the next few decades the social societal views of our country will shift and the definition of marriage will expand to include same sex couples in the same manner interracial couples have included into the concept.
          Or perhaps while we're all wringing our thumbs and waiting for that ever-elusive "consensus," a handful of gay people somewhere will snap (whether on this issue or something else) and do something explosive...  If 9/11 plus the history of language of threat being applied to gayness are anything to go by, then gays would be treated with increased suspicion and hostility, more like Muslims in America today.  Not that I'm a fan of such broadly violent catharsis, but really, speaking more generally... 

        Why wait for so many variables that might change and alter the atmosphere for the whole issue?  The only good politics I see in that, is if one actually doesn't like the current trend  or thinks too much has already changed...  In that case, it makes sense to quietly hope something swings back the other way.  Just get people to wait, it might all go away...  In any case, the status quo prevails in your generation so you seem to be content to live with that inequality, whether it benefits you or you're simply afraid to deal with a little confrontation to reach the alternative.  Either the state supports justice now, or there may never be conditions for it later.  Saying, let's wait and see what public opinion does is playing the lottery at best and blind to the history of movements at worst.

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Though it is fair to point out that at the time of Loving vs Virginia inter-racial marriage was already legal in several states through legislative means, not through court means.
         It's just as fair to point out the courts are part of the system, too.  So we can each spin the wheel until it lands on the result we like this time...

Quote
The fact that we use the qualifier "same sex" really just points out that we compartmentalize same-sex marriage as a different entity or a variation of a societal norm. This in and of itself is not grounds to say whether or not it should be legalized, but as Noelle, Jude, and others have argued, it is indicative of the fact that there is a societal perception of marriage having a traditional definition into which same-sex marriage does not fit.
          I think using "societal" is suggesting a sort of consensus that doesn't exist here.  Your counterexample was interracial marriage, but interracial marriages do not follow the same trends by class or regionally either.  Saying there is broader support for interracial marriage in principle, hardly speaks to who is involved and how they are affected. 

         We can contrast interracial marriage data with what is likely to be involved in gay and lesbian marriages.  http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1616/american-marriage-interracial-interethnic  First off, few of the participants in those marriages are White (9% in 2008).  Fully 1/3 of the interracial marriage partners identify as multi-racial to begin with.  Put those together:  It is not mainly identified Whites changing socioeconomic status.   Contrast that with the fact that a foundation of often White heterosexual privilege, in terms of wealth and assets, lies significantly with the tax benefits plus geographic mobility of nationally recognized marriage.  White straight people, as a class, have more to lose from gay marriage and thus it stands to reason they might be biased against it.  (And that's setting aside the quite real biases that they also may hold about how orientation should relate to outdated gender roles per se.)  The stats also show that support for interracial marriage is higher among racial minorities than among Whites.  So I would argue that in fact, the party with the most to lose materially and in terms of prestige is still resistant.  We can expect that 20 or 40 years after legalization of gay marriage, there would still be some huffing and threatening too, but that isn't a good reason to delay.

        Commonalities I see between interracial marriage and gay marriage are:  More frequent activity in the West (many more same-sex marriages there) and more awareness among young people.  But we didn't stop interracial marriage because it's more popular in some regions than others, nor because the younger generation supported it more and it was "socially untested" or some such.  Instead, here you are saying see, that went ahead.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2010, 10:53:37 PM by kylie »

Offline Florence

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #251 on: August 18, 2010, 12:11:02 AM »
Actually usually we refer to it as getting "Itallian" or "pizza", but logically speaking, if you're calling it pizza, and not even "Itallian food" wouldn't that make it even less "food" than "Chinese food". Also, I dunno about you but when we say "Let's get some food" it can definitely mean Chinese or pizza, hell, sometimes it means Japanese if we can afford it.

Like I said before, using a qualifier doesn't mean that the original word does not apply. If you do not classify Chinese food as food, I'm very curious as to what you DO classify it as (aside from cat xP). Suggesting something is different because it contains a qualifier implies that... a glazed donut isn't a donut, a black cat isn't a cat; that chocolate ice cream isn't ice cream... that green tea isn't tea. Granted, in Western culture, when people say "tea" they generally refer to "black tea", it doesn't somehow make green tea any less of a tea. In fact, tea also often refers to tea in general, with the specification of type following, such as asking if someone would like tea, THEN asking if they'd like black or green.

If you had some black tea with you on an airplane, and flew from the US or UK to Japan. Would your black tea be "tea" when you were in the Western country, but suddenly cease to be "tea" in Japan, where green tea is more common? Would it suddenly no longer have the same intrinsic properties? Would it no longer steep in hot water?

Offline Noelle

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #252 on: August 18, 2010, 12:19:47 AM »
Except if you're going to start talking about intrinsic properties, one of the intrinsic properties of marriage is that it's between a man and woman, thus making the qualifier 'gay' more conflicting than 'interracial', given an interracial couple can still consist of a man and a woman, whereas a gay marriage does not.

Offline Florence

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #253 on: August 18, 2010, 12:23:17 AM »
Except if you're going to start talking about intrinsic properties, one of the intrinsic properties of marriage is that it's between a man and woman, thus making the qualifier 'gay' more conflicting than 'interracial', given an interracial couple can still consist of a man and a woman, whereas a gay marriage does not.

Interestingly enough, Webster lists gay marriage as a definition under the word "marriage", granted it seems to reference the two as different definitions, they are, however, listed as definitions under the same word. Unless Webster forgot how dictionaries are supposed to work, that would imply that "marriage" can indeed mean "same-sex marriage".

Offline kylie

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #254 on: August 18, 2010, 01:03:58 AM »
Quote from: Noelle
Except if you're going to start talking about intrinsic properties, one of the intrinsic properties of marriage is that it's between a man and woman...
          Says you, but as far as I can see it's a social matter.  The minute someone disagrees with you, you have to explain why one should be considered any more intrinsic than the other.  It's not like chemistry where oxygen starts a fire under condition X, or it doesn't. 

         I don't see how going on about the primordial essence in your head like Aristotle for whom one rule must fit all because his reading of that category says so...  Or in the ancient sands of the Middle East, where the rightist churches at least pretend to know what was going on...  Or more accurately, with the 19th century state-sponsored eugenics -- which is much closer to the hegemonic definition of marriage you seem to regard as ageless and unchanging...  I just don't buy that any of that logically leads to your claim that marriage somehow naturally "is" only what you say it is.  Quite the contrary.  The historical evidence is more that what a marriage has been -- whether in folk understanding or in law -- particularly in the terms that were argued in defense of Proposition 8 (having to do with progeny and family stability, what not) has changed dramatically both across cultures and over time even in the West.  The legal arbitration when it comes to who gets protection, and a good part of the institutions doing the kind of definition that are now being fought over, has generally been a state matter. 

       It was not as though so many women were able to choose from the outset that they should be something other than property, nor that they did so without resistance either.  After a point, they made some noise, some men said oh no the end of the natural order of things, and the rules were changed over those protests anyway.  I'm sure lots of people thought God and science and intrinsic nature and the better nature of humanity or even the will of just the silent moral majority what have you were all behind them.  But that is neither here nor there.  Try and prove "intrinsic."  Please.  Intrinsic what?  To whom?  Why favor them and not the other?  At least with the 14th Amendment, we can look up something of what we're arguing about.

        In the modern era, in the legal realm, it's been very strongly defined as a question of what the state feels interested in doing.  So is the state going to be one that upholds fundamental equality, or not.  Not some relative % of equality that's popular with X% this year and a different situation the next, but basic fundamental equality.  If you want to imagine something about the primordial unchanging essence of something that all good people should recognize just like you, then there's plenty of room to go meditate and pray.  You can even schedule a protest in the street once in a while (recommend you bring eggproof hat)...  But the state doesn't have grounds to buy all of that as a reason to delay gay marriage.  Not any more than it has made special exception for the "religious" inspirations (such as they might be!) of the KKK.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2010, 01:06:20 AM by kylie »

Offline Jude

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #255 on: August 18, 2010, 02:05:59 AM »
Just curious, you don't think it's dangerous to push the issue judicially when we have a conservative Supreme Court at the end of the road?  The decision made if it reaches the Supreme Court could easily backfire in a huge way, shutting down any progress on the gay rights front for decades.  Walker's decision has already been appealed (and the appeal was accepted, along with a court order stopping any marriage licenses from being distributed for the time being).  Unless they strike down DOMA (which isn't on trial) won't this be an open and shut case, resulting in a devastating precedent for the homosexual community?

Offline Florence

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #256 on: August 18, 2010, 02:17:48 AM »
Personally, I'd prefer to start a civil war or something, since begging for equality doesn't really sit well with me... but I suppose considering the unpopular nature of such a stance, I'd say we need to go for what we can get, because we've not been getting too many chances. It's a matter or time in any case, since the older generations will die off and take much of their hate with them, but it would be nice if some of the older gay couples could get married in their lifetime, so I'm all for doing whatever it takes to speed up the process. Quite frankly, due process be damned.

As for it backfiring, anything can backfire. Waiting can backfire just as easily by allowing apathy to rest back into place. At least doing something has a shot of improving things. By thrusting the issue into the front page, we make it harder and harder to be apathetic, harder to just ignore or brush aside.

Oddly enough, my ideal government would be a benevolent-ish dictatorship. Every time I play a game that lets you run a country, that's how I do it. "Play nice or I'll kill you" pretty much xD Guess I just don't see the virtue in tolerating intolerance.

Offline Noelle

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #257 on: August 18, 2010, 02:36:57 AM »
          Says you, but as far as I can see it's a social matter.  The minute someone disagrees with you, you have to explain why one should be considered any more intrinsic than the other.  It's not like chemistry where oxygen starts a fire under condition X, or it doesn't. 

         I don't see how going on about the primordial essence in your head like Aristotle for whom one rule must fit all because his reading of that category says so...  Or in the ancient sands of the Middle East, where the rightist churches at least pretend to know what was going on...  Or more accurately, with the 19th century state-sponsored eugenics -- which is much closer to the hegemonic definition of marriage you seem to regard as ageless and unchanging...  I just don't buy that any of that logically leads to your claim that marriage somehow naturally "is" only what you say it is.  Quite the contrary.  The historical evidence is more that what a marriage has been -- whether in folk understanding or in law -- particularly in the terms that were argued in defense of Proposition 8 (having to do with progeny and family stability, what not) has changed dramatically both across cultures and over time even in the West.  The legal arbitration when it comes to who gets protection, and a good part of the institutions doing the kind of definition that are now being fought over, has generally been a state matter. 

       It was not as though so many women were able to choose from the outset that they should be something other than property, nor that they did so without resistance either.  After a point, they made some noise, some men said oh no the end of the natural order of things, and the rules were changed over those protests anyway.  I'm sure lots of people thought God and science and intrinsic nature and the better nature of humanity or even the will of just the silent moral majority what have you were all behind them.  But that is neither here nor there.  Try and prove "intrinsic."  Please.  Intrinsic what?  To whom?  Why favor them and not the other?  At least with the 14th Amendment, we can look up something of what we're arguing about.

        In the modern era, in the legal realm, it's been very strongly defined as a question of what the state feels interested in doing.  So is the state going to be one that upholds fundamental equality, or not.  Not some relative % of equality that's popular with X% this year and a different situation the next, but basic fundamental equality.  If you want to imagine something about the primordial unchanging essence of something that all good people should recognize just like you, then there's plenty of room to go meditate and pray.  You can even schedule a protest in the street once in a while (recommend you bring eggproof hat)...  But the state doesn't have grounds to buy all of that as a reason to delay gay marriage.  Not any more than it has made special exception for the "religious" inspirations (such as they might be!) of the KKK.

Your wall of text is all well and good, except I already made the argument that I don't actually think the traditional definition of marriage is relevant or just anymore. Glad to see you're paying attention.

Offline fallen paradise

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #258 on: August 18, 2010, 07:07:12 AM »
Personally, I'd prefer to start a civil war or something, since begging for equality doesn't really sit well with me... but I suppose considering the unpopular nature of such a stance, I'd say we need to go for what we can get, because we've not been getting too many chances. It's a matter or time in any case, since the older generations will die off and take much of their hate with them, but it would be nice if some of the older gay couples could get married in their lifetime, so I'm all for doing whatever it takes to speed up the process. Quite frankly, due process be damned.

As for it backfiring, anything can backfire. Waiting can backfire just as easily by allowing apathy to rest back into place. At least doing something has a shot of improving things. By thrusting the issue into the front page, we make it harder and harder to be apathetic, harder to just ignore or brush aside.

Oddly enough, my ideal government would be a benevolent-ish dictatorship. Every time I play a game that lets you run a country, that's how I do it. "Play nice or I'll kill you" pretty much xD Guess I just don't see the virtue in tolerating intolerance.

Rather then expend the energy in the court battles the energy should be expended to get equal rights through legislative means. It is faster, harder to appeal, generally more accepted than court decisions handed down from on high, and allows for true social and societal education.  If that means strong Civil Unions as a gateway wedge to same-sex marriage, so be it. The problem I have with benevolent dictators is there is nothing to keep them from being malevolent. As I've said before, the problem with going through the courts is that while many judges execute their duties fairly, justly, and with restraint they are not immune to mistakes, they are not immune to bias, and they are not immune to over-reaching, especially when the letter of the law and precedence is outdated or unfavorable.

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #259 on: August 18, 2010, 10:21:53 AM »
Due to the balance of powers, the legislative and judicial processes are incredibly intertwined.  Judges are there to enforce the law, true, but laws are also made and changed through precedent-setting cases as well as through the voting system.

Voting gets the laws on the books, but the judicial system makes certain that those laws don't violate the constitution.  You really can't 'focus' on one and ignore the other.

Offline Florence

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #260 on: August 18, 2010, 12:35:06 PM »
Rather then expend the energy in the court battles the energy should be expended to get equal rights through legislative means. It is faster, harder to appeal, generally more accepted than court decisions handed down from on high, and allows for true social and societal education.  If that means strong Civil Unions as a gateway wedge to same-sex marriage, so be it. The problem I have with benevolent dictators is there is nothing to keep them from being malevolent. As I've said before, the problem with going through the courts is that while many judges execute their duties fairly, justly, and with restraint they are not immune to mistakes, they are not immune to bias, and they are not immune to over-reaching, especially when the letter of the law and precedence is outdated or unfavorable.

Oh, I know, the only reason I don't endorse dictatorship is because some asshole would inevitably come along and screw it up for all of us. Same problem for communism, but... this is getting off topic. Simply put, it's my ideal government, unfortunately ideals rarely work in the real world.

Due to the balance of powers, the legislative and judicial processes are incredibly intertwined.  Judges are there to enforce the law, true, but laws are also made and changed through precedent-setting cases as well as through the voting system.

Voting gets the laws on the books, but the judicial system makes certain that those laws don't violate the constitution.  You really can't 'focus' on one and ignore the other.

Agreed. :3

... yes, that was mostly to keep my post somewhat on topic... shut up D:

Offline kylie

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #261 on: August 18, 2010, 02:25:35 PM »
Quote from: fallen
Your wall of text is all well and good,
          What is this?  Code for you just didn't want to, or didn't even try to read it?  In that case, you could just ignore it rather than sticking your head out to say nothing more than you didn't care to take it seriously.  It's not as though it were written in a fine-point font with no paragraph breaks.   At least I bother to indent paragraphs fairly often.  Which you can't say for most people on here.

So you can take that little jab over nothing at all,
And either toss it at everything and nothing on the whole site --
Or better yet, toss it right out the window.

Did that come across any better?  Really now.

Quote
except I already made the argument that I don't actually think the traditional definition of marriage is relevant or just anymore. Glad to see you're paying attention.
        I saw that.  It does not square very well with your pushing a policy platform on the basis of marriage supposedly actually having some "intrinsic" essence just like green tea. 

         Perhaps you would be happier if I simply said your arguments are really inconsistent with each other -- and didn't occupy any space to answer any of them.  Then, you wouldn't have to worry that I might have a point if you bothered to spend any time on it.  And you wouldn't have to go to the trouble of dredging up irrelevant jabs about aesthetics in order to excuse yourself from taking the content seriously.
 
« Last Edit: August 18, 2010, 02:27:15 PM by kylie »

Offline kylie

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #262 on: August 18, 2010, 02:59:50 PM »
Quote from: Jude
Just curious, you don't think it's dangerous to push the issue judicially when we have a conservative Supreme Court at the end of the road? 
          Like I think MacKenna said, basically...  I tend to think it's no more problematic than waiting around to see what else can go wrong.  And possibly worse. 

          Also, consider how we talk about slavery and the civil rights movement today.  I think you and some others who have argued for some more (variously) incremental or wait and see approaches, have pointed to a long history of hurdles for each movement.  Well, the way I see it, even under that model of change:  Right now, there is less "official" history with which to argue about reforming gay status in the first place.  No one has even started to take certain steps.   If this or that branch of the government never answered a particular question at all, then the situation remains murky.  But if they are pressed to give some answer and it turns out their position is not well-grounded, or if that answer leads directly to further negative social consequences, then pressure will mount that much faster and harder for another hearing. 

          As I've said before, I don't presume that what the courts do is necessarily so much more enduring than what other branches do.  In some cases, the Executive or Legislature have also been known to go right around the courts and say, nope, not in our best interests.  Sometimes they do it very visibly and sometimes they do it much more through a play of bureaucratic technicalities.  In such cases, the response boils down to, "You try and enforce it."  But whatever happens after courts:  These things need to be tested so we know where these parts of the government will stand, anyway.

Quote
Unless they strike down DOMA (which isn't on trial) won't this be an open and shut case, resulting in a devastating precedent for the homosexual community?

          I don't believe DOMA itself has ever been subjected to such a broad legal challenge before.  It may or may not survive a run-in with the Equal Protection Clause.  It rather seems like the Supreme Court would have to find a sore excuse to say that gays are not subject to discrimination and not worthy of protection, no?  Although I realize that is kind of the general direction that attempts to separate gay rights from civil rights are going in this thread -- but it's on the basis of degree not kind.  I'm very skeptical that 14th Amendment can be reasonably interpreted as conferring only relative degrees of protection.  The Court might do so anyway, but that would probably exacerbate the issue -- bringing a new phase of activism, more visibility to the problem, and further challenges.  There is at least one other legal means to contest DOMA itself that I've heard of --  the requirement for each state to give "full faith" to other states' family laws -- but I don't know if this particular case will go there.



Offline Jude

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #263 on: August 18, 2010, 03:09:55 PM »
Due to the balance of powers, the legislative and judicial processes are incredibly intertwined.  Judges are there to enforce the law, true, but laws are also made and changed through precedent-setting cases as well as through the voting system.

Voting gets the laws on the books, but the judicial system makes certain that those laws don't violate the constitution.  You really can't 'focus' on one and ignore the other.
I definitely agree that it's important that the Judicial system keep the Legislative system and voters from enacting laws that are unconstitutional.  You may think from that statement alone I should be with those who are against Prop 8, but the thing is, that's a narrow reading of the situation which only focuses on the past 2 years and not what actually happened with Prop 8 as a whole.

Civil Unions were passed in California, called Domestic Partnerships awhile back.  They took many steps to making them as equal as possible.  Eventually someone sued because there wasn't complete parity.  The Judiciary, instead of enriching Domestic Partnerships, decided that marriage should include Same-Sex couples.  Prop 8 was simply an attempt to "repeal" the decision made by the court, not a law passed that was unconstitutional, merely an attempt to return to the status quo before a court forcibly changed things essentially out of no where.  Here's a basic timeline:

1)  Gays cannot marry or have any legal form of partnership in California.
2)  In 1999 "Domestic Partnerships" arise from the Legislature.
3)  In 2005 there's another bill passed which expands Domestic Partnerships to include nearly every state-level benefit.
4)  In 2007 there was a law suit filed against the dichotomy of Domestic Partnership and Marriage, which resulted in Same-Sex Marriage being legal.
5)  In 2008 Proposition 8 passed, reversing the decision made in 2007 by the judiciary.

So what you have, is California moving towards granting homosexuals full state rights at a pretty fast pace by way the legislature.  It took 6 years for them to go from "no marriage rights" to "almost every state right."  Of course, that didn't settle for very long because people felt the need to push the issue despite the progress actually being made in a reasonable fashion.  California isn't the only state to have something similar to this happen:  Maine had an almost identical situation.

Imagine you're a Californian of religious faith who vaguely feels that is immoral to be a homosexual.  You support the actions in creating domestic partnerships because you are a compassionate individual and you feel sorry for gays even though you don't approve of their lifestyle.  You oppose same-sex marriage primarily on the basis that, to just about every Christian denomination, marriage is a sacrament that deserves to be treated with the utmost reverence, and to allow gays to marry is nothing short of enshrining sacrilegiousness into our law.

You support the Legislature's decisions in 1999 and 2005 -- then 2007 comes along an a court order smacks you across the face despite the fact that you've been reasonably progressive, forward thinking, and accepting aside from your objections.  You feel wronged -- will you vote for another law or candidates that supports gay marriage?  I doubt it.  More than likely you're a Prop 8 proponent now.

There's no sympathy for the other side.  Right or wrong, they have deeply held convictions which form the basis of their actions.  I don't see how disrespecting their opinions by circumventing the small amount of political power they hold in this country is going to create anything but massive backlash.

EDIT:  In Citizens for Equal Protection v. Bruning in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals the following decision was reached:  "laws limiting the state-recognized institution of marriage to heterosexual couples ... do not violate the Constitution of the United States."  The plaintiffs in that situation were smart enough not to bring it to the Supreme Court, because they knew they would lose.  This really tempting fate here.

DOMA may be on is way out the door as we speak; back in July there was a ruling against it that the justice department is planning to appeal.  I wouldn't be surprised if it was struck down, because a lot of people think it is a State's Rights issue (they feel the Federal Government overstepped its authority).  I wonder what they'll do at a federal level if that happens?

Offline MasterMischief

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #264 on: August 18, 2010, 05:59:54 PM »
I just can not agree with you, Jude.  You may feel that reasonable progress is being made.  I do not see it that way.  For me, it is a clear case of right and wrong and I do not think we should put the brakes on doing the right thing.

Do we risk loosing people in the middle?  Sure.  But we risk loosing them anyway.  And they are not the ones that are going to advocate change anyway.

I can imagine myself an irate southern slave owner too, but that still does not make it right nor that I should compromise my principles.

Offline Noelle

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #265 on: August 18, 2010, 07:52:32 PM »
          What is this?  Code for you just didn't want to, or didn't even try to read it?  In that case, you could just ignore it rather than sticking your head out to say nothing more than you didn't care to take it seriously.  It's not as though it were written in a fine-point font with no paragraph breaks.   At least I bother to indent paragraphs fairly often.  Which you can't say for most people on here.

So you can take that little jab over nothing at all,
And either toss it at everything and nothing on the whole site --
Or better yet, toss it right out the window.

Did that come across any better?  Really now.
        I saw that.  It does not square very well with your pushing a policy platform on the basis of marriage supposedly actually having some "intrinsic" essence just like green tea. 

         Perhaps you would be happier if I simply said your arguments are really inconsistent with each other -- and didn't occupy any space to answer any of them.  Then, you wouldn't have to worry that I might have a point if you bothered to spend any time on it.  And you wouldn't have to go to the trouble of dredging up irrelevant jabs about aesthetics in order to excuse yourself from taking the content seriously.
 

To be truthful, most of your posts go off on long-winded, hard-to-follow tangents that are excessive. I've read through a few of your replies several times over and frankly, I get so lost sometimes that I just give up on trying to decipher what you really mean. I also find it difficult to dredge through the hostility and snark (and I am admittedly guilty of doing this on a few occasions, but I'm trying to keep it in check) and the cute quips you throw in (and also, thank you for the large text size, very effective and not at all condescending [you see? my own sarcasm, can we both just laugh about this now?]) to get to the meaning, to cut to the core of it all. Maybe you'll disagree with me here, but I think I'd be a lot more willing to respond in a manner that satisfies you if I didn't have to weed through a verbal flood to figure out what you really want to say.

Actually, if you cut your sarcasm (and I'll do the same) and asked, I'd be happy to explain anything that seems inconsistent, though I have to say that not everything on "your side" of the matter is crystal clear or perfectly consistent, either, a matter I would also happily discuss. To get back to your original point about 'intrinsic', I'm dying for you to show me where I'm "pushing". It was hardly a statement of my own beliefs as much as it was to point out how ridiculous the food tangent was becoming. And, well, the definition of marriage since...as long as I can think back has been strictly between a man and a woman. "Intrinsic" in terms of concepts is ridiculous regardless of where it's applied.

Just so we're clear, I'll repeat myself again, I don't agree with this in terms of contemporary usage and demand and I believe that words can, should, and do change regularly to fit with its present-day usage. Would you disagree with this?

To be honest, I don't disagree with a lot of what seems to be the core beliefs here. I think it's hilarious that it seems like a lot of people arguing with me seem to keep missing that and can't stand that I won't just shut up and agree. I'm not arguing against gay marriage or the ~*intrinsic*~ properties of anything, at least not seriously. We fundamentally think the same things about this issue. It's called playing devil's advocate. It's called thought experimentation, to flex both my own understanding as well as what I feel might be a counter-belief in order to expand my own knowledge on the issue, and I have learned a fair bit from this thread. This is the politics and religion thread. This is a place to debate, and in even the most elementary debate exercises in high school, they make you take a stance contrary to your own to better figure out if your own beliefs are valid.

Do we risk loosing people in the middle?  Sure.  But we risk loosing them anyway.  And they are not the ones that are going to advocate change anyway.

This attitude, I have to say, is precisely why I think homosexuals will fail in gaining acceptance in the next ten years, at least. The extremists are the ones you should ignore, the moderates are the ones who can be swayed to support you -- how do you think elections are won? What exactly do you think "change" means? Preaching to your own choir doesn't change anyone, so how do you think acceptance works, exactly?
« Last Edit: August 18, 2010, 07:57:57 PM by Noelle »

Offline MasterMischief

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #266 on: August 18, 2010, 08:34:20 PM »
So how do we when the moderates?  By pretending that we do not want full access to the right/privilege/term/whatever you want to call it right now?  Or making a pact with the devil and agreeing not to 'go all the way' in hopes they will come around and lets us later?

I believe in the philosophy of win/win, but I just do not see a way to accomplish that here.  This just seems like the three-fifths compromise all over.  It was absurd back then and it is absurd now.

Offline Noelle

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #267 on: August 18, 2010, 10:19:07 PM »
Gay rights advocates could win moderates by first and foremost actually trying to understand why they aren't supporting gay rights and what motivates those people. I think this thread is a very good example of what's happening with that right now -- this extreme attitude of "if you don't agree with us, you're a homophobe/bigot/awful human being" is alienating and creates a black or white situation when this is not a black or white situation. You're painting every side but yours with one broad stroke and in the same instance, crying foul when someone does the same to you. Treat people like people, drop the childish "well why don't they?" attitude. If both sides sit with their backs turned and go "I'll talk when he talks", then guess what? Nobody talks. and in this case, the gay community can't afford not to because as I've said before, inaction feeds right into the opposition. They don't actually have to do much to keep gays from getting married because...well, in most states right now, they already can't. It's senseless, blind pride.

You keep acting like the only consequence of civil unions is that you'll be stuck with it forever and ever and you'll never advance from there. Well guess what? The 3/5ths compromise, your own example, didn't end there. There's so much comparison with the civil rights movement, but the actual steps being taken are only loosely related, at best. The action supposedly being taken is self-contradicting and, in my opinion, self-fulfilling. People say talk doesn't work, but then when questioned as to what steps they're taking to further the cause, they list discussion as a step. Either it works or it doesn't, and responsibility needs to be taken when it doesn't. Is it not working just because it's not working? Is it not working because of the words you're saying? Is it not working because of your approach? How can you improve the dialogue and appeal to moderates who can be swayed? What do they need? What motivates them? Who are they? Are they listening, and if they aren't, why aren't they listening?

Minorities made steps, which means taking every opportunity for more rights that you can until you've achieved equality. Nobody here (to my knowledge) has said "take civil unions and stop there", in fact, I have encouraged taking civil unions and using that as momentum to propel the agenda forward into full-blown equal standing. But apparently people feel like they're "above" that, which I find really sad. Why wouldn't you take every avenue open to you to gain more foothold except to say some unfounded, foolish 'pride' is holding you back? Don't you think minorities considered themselves (and legitimately were) above every step below full-blown equality?

Everybody wants what they want and they want it now. I agree that in the perfect world, waiting wouldn't be needed, that people would realize that this isn't fair or just, and that we could grant equal rights ASAP and everybody would be cool with it. Reality sucks. This isn't the perfect world, in fact, it's far from it.

Offline Synecdoche17

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #268 on: August 19, 2010, 01:01:45 AM »
Coming back to this thread after a bit:

Just replying to one part because I feel the rest we've gone over ad nausea. Ironically what happened was that the house got divided and as a result no one took a step forward. Your analogy may be your interpretation, but to me it seemed more like some people holding every else on a sinking ship at gunpoint because there wasn't enough room on the lifeboat for everyone.
You're right, no one took a step forward. Committing to principle isn't easy, or else everyone would do it. However, I would much rather that we all took a step forward next year, than that three-fourths of us take a step forward now and leave the last fourth hanging for a decade or more. Further, I doubt the sincerity of those who said they would vote for ENDA if it didn't have transgender people in it. Really? That's like the fox saying he'll stay outside, if only you leave the henhouse open.

--------------
Re: Jude's last post:

Quote
So what you have, is California moving towards granting homosexuals full state rights at a pretty fast pace by way the legislature.  It took 6 years for them to go from "no marriage rights" to "almost every state right."  Of course, that didn't settle for very long because people felt the need to push the issue despite the progress actually being made in a reasonable fashion.
Okay, except:
1) Prop 8 didn't reverse any of the domestic partnership benefits, so it wasn't a 'backlash'. In fact, the brief window between the 2007 decision and Prop 8 permitted 20,000 gay marriages - 20,000 marriages that made 40,000 people happier and provided 20,000 examples to the population of why gay marriage is not a troublesome thing. In fact, those 20,000 are ticking timebombs for the religious right - when you have to explain to your audience that it is George Takei, specifically, who is the devil incarnate, you lose a lot of credibility.
2) Prop 8 passed in large part because of sclerotic opposition from the LGBT community. Everyone thought it was going to fail. Prop 8's passage has created, at least in my social circle and from what I can see in magazines and newspapers, a furor among LGBT people and their straight allies that just was not there at all in 2008. Nate Silver at 538.com predicts the popular vote will shift in favor of gay marriage in California by 2014; I think he's being generous with that estimate.
3) What are anti-LGBT activists going to do that they weren't going to before?


Quote
There's no sympathy for the other side.  Right or wrong, they have deeply held convictions which form the basis of their actions.  I don't see how disrespecting their opinions by circumventing the small amount of political power they hold in this country is going to create anything but massive backlash.
Lots of people have deeply held convictions. Sometimes those convictions are immoral. I do not feel any duty to treat a person's opinions as sacrosanct simply because they are opinions.
As for "small amount of political power", I should point out that those against gay marriage still control an entire political party (the Republicans), the Presidency (Obama), the Senate, and quite probably the Supreme Court.
If you're talking in California, well - get real. California's politics are so fubared no one, neither right nor left, can get anything done. The state legislative seats and Congressional seats are heavily gerrymandered; no one ever gets unelected, which is why our budget is such a mess. Inciting the religious right merely means that the usual incumbents get higher or narrower margins of victory, without any change. Our Senators are multi-decade incumbents as well; it's hard to imagine either Feinstein or Boxer being dislodged. Further, the state's Republican party lacks star power - without another Schwarzenegger standing in the wings, they're unlikely to find a candidate who can grab the right-wing vote and still appeal to independents. Meg Whitman's extraordinary spending in the gubernatorial race illustrates my thesis perfectly - she's still losing badly to a Democrat, Jerry Brown, who's spent virtually nothing. The rage of the right will have to vent itself in other ways.

The Supreme Court is actually an interesting point. I agree with you, Jude, that bringing the case while there's a 5-4 conservative court runs the risk of a Plessy v. Ferguson. However, the swing vote, Kennedy, has voted favorably towards LGBT people several times in his career (in Lawrence v. Texas, iirc, which decriminalized any sex act between consenting adults, among other decisions). Further, if you read Judge Walker's opinion, Walker goes out of his way to cite Kennedy's thinking on the matter repeatedly. Kennedy would be faced with the unenviable position of contradicting himself several times over if he voted to support Prop 8.

Offline Jude

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #269 on: August 19, 2010, 01:17:09 AM »
I disagree that what you said about Prop 8 matters, but I don't think any amount of discussion is gonna bridge that gap.

On your point on the Supreme Court stuff, as you've said President Obama is against gay marriage.  He's appointed 2 of the 4 "liberal" judges.  Isn't it possible, perhaps even likely if he appointed people who represented his viewpoints faithfully (which most Presidents at least attempt to do) that one of his appointees will vote against it if it comes up?

The thing is, I'm not even fundamentally against Judicial Activism.  When it comes to politics I care very little about principles anymore.  Yes, I have them, but I realize that to focus entirely on theoretical absolutes is missing the point:  practicality is what's important.  I'm completely opposed to drugs being illegal, but if it was up to me on what would end up on the ballot or before the houses of congress it would be marijuana legalization only.  Progress requires a palatable pace, especially in the social arena, because in lieu of that you never get anywhere.

Sticking to your principles and refusing to consider compromising them at all does not work well.  It doesn't get you anywhere and it hurts the country.  Look at what the Republicans have done since 2008.  The only reason people want to give them any power at all at this point (aside from solid right-wingers) is so they can act as a check against the Democrats who are also unpopular.  The point is, extremism doesn't work, even if you're being extreme about a concept that is undeniably true.

Take Global Warming for instance.  It's definitely happening.  The evidence becomes increasingly solid every year, yet next to nothing is being done.  Why?  You've got a lot of people practically treating it as a religion, with Al Gore (who is a massive hypocrite and attention whore) spearheading the ineffectual efforts by overstating the case.  Compromise is the key to success.

One side doesn't want gays to be married, another side demands it:  if both groups act as unmovable rocks, there will never be any progress.  So take the midpoint, the golden ratio.  Civil Unions.  Eventually that concept becomes less radical, and then you move things a step further.  Soon enough, you're where you wanted to be all along.  It's too costly a wager to try and go for everything at once.  This is too important.

If you aim for the stars and you miss, you end up floating out in space forever, or maybe drifting into a black hole.  Try to hit the moon first, then your further attempts can be launched without worrying about the resistive force of gravity.
« Last Edit: August 19, 2010, 01:19:01 AM by Jude »

Offline Synecdoche17

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #270 on: August 19, 2010, 01:53:27 AM »
On your point on the Supreme Court stuff, as you've said President Obama is against gay marriage.  He's appointed 2 of the 4 "liberal" judges.  Isn't it possible, perhaps even likely if he appointed people who represented his viewpoints faithfully (which most Presidents at least attempt to do) that one of his appointees will vote against it if it comes up?
Kagan threw the military off Harvard's campus because of DADT - I'm pretty sure she's a guaranteed vote in favor of same-sex marriage. Sotomayor might be iffier, but her rulings on affirmative action seem to show that she's very concerned about the treatment of minorities in society.

Quote
Sticking to your principles and refusing to consider compromising them at all does not work well.  It doesn't get you anywhere and it hurts the country.  Look at what the Republicans have done since 2008.  The only reason people want to give them any power at all at this point (aside from solid right-wingers) is so they can act as a check against the Democrats who are also unpopular.  The point is, extremism doesn't work, even if you're being extreme about a concept that is undeniably true.
Wow, wow, wow - we have completely different viewpoints on that. By all rights, 2010 should be a disaster for the Republicans; Democrats are coming off 8 years of an unpopular Republican president who presided over the implosion of the economy. The only reason the Republicans are strong is the spinelessness of Democrats - their eternal willingness to scrape and bow before corporatist and conservative impulses. Look at the "Ground Zero mosque" issue - it should have been a slam-dunk for the Democrats to come out and defend freedom of religion, particularly over an imam who was enlisted by the Bush administration to fight terrorism, but Harry Reid sits there all mealy-mouthed about "taste", Obama hems and haws, and Pataki is actually trying to get the mosque relocated - a complete and total failure to articulate any opposition.
The Republicans win because of their commitment to principles. This country has more Democrats than Republicans, by several percentage points, but the conservative dominance of the last thirty years is all about motivating people to get to the polls, and it works, because Democrats don't show up to vote. You can't fire up people with halfway deals. You fire them up with principles.

Quote
Take Global Warming for instance.  It's definitely happening.  The evidence becomes increasingly solid every year, yet next to nothing is being done.  Why?  You've got a lot of people practically treating it as a religion, with Al Gore (who is a massive hypocrite and attention whore) spearheading the ineffectual efforts by overstating the case.  Compromise is the key to success.
Wow. I don't think I've ever heard someone argue that the environmentalists are losing because they try too hard. Talk about blaming the victim.

Nothing gets done because gigantic corporations with trillions of dollars oppose it. You and I might be concerned about global warming, but we don't make $30,000 donations to political PACs.

Quote
One side doesn't want gays to be married, another side demands it:  if both groups act as unmovable rocks, there will never be any progress.  So take the midpoint, the golden ratio.
Except that there has been progress - the same-sex marriage movement has been growing steadily since it entered the political scene. Prop 8 is a setback, but it's not an undoing.

Have you ever heard of the "Overton Window"? The Overton Window is the range of possibilities people conceive of, politically. "Moving the Window" requires pushing a concept until people take it for "normal". The Republicans do this very, very well. Republican elected officials and spokespersons float a concept, conservative media gobbles it up and plays it endlessly for a week, and by the end of the week people are reasonably convinced that Iraq has nukes or the President is a secret traitor, because everyone's talking about it. Today - right now - we are having a debate in this nation about revising the 14th Amendment, the one that freed the slaves, that made states obey the Federal Constitution, etc. Why? Because Republicans argue that terrorists are coming here and having babies that will grow up to kill us. This is beyond ridiculous, but it's being treated with total seriousness by the media, because enough people are talking about it.
Political progress requires setting outrageous goals, precisely because your opponents will think 'it's not so bad' when they meet you halfway, never mind that your halfway would have been outrageous a year ago.

Quote
If you aim for the stars and you miss, you end up floating out in space forever, or maybe drifting into a black hole.  Try to hit the moon first, then your further attempts can be launched without worrying about the resistive force of gravity.
In real life, we made it to the moon, then never went back and never will; also, the guy who inspired us to go to the moon was shot by an extremist. I'm not sure the example helps your case.

Offline Jude

Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #271 on: August 19, 2010, 02:32:17 AM »
Wow, wow, wow - we have completely different viewpoints on that. By all rights, 2010 should be a disaster for the Republicans; Democrats are coming off 8 years of an unpopular Republican president who presided over the implosion of the economy. The only reason the Republicans are strong is the spinelessness of Democrats - their eternal willingness to scrape and bow before corporatist and conservative impulses. Look at the "Ground Zero mosque" issue - it should have been a slam-dunk for the Democrats to come out and defend freedom of religion, particularly over an imam who was enlisted by the Bush administration to fight terrorism, but Harry Reid sits there all mealy-mouthed about "taste", Obama hems and haws, and Pataki is actually trying to get the mosque relocated - a complete and total failure to articulate any opposition.
You present one example here, but look at what the Democrats have done since getting into office.  The only thing anyone really gives a crap about in the mainstream public is the economy, and they've passed a bunch of spending bills and regulatory packages that are right in line with Democratic ideals.  I agree that their policy has been watered down unnecessarily in certain areas which pragmatism only matters in as much as the policy works (such as the economy), but they've hit so many liberal issues in the last 2 years, that claiming they weren't liberal enough is a truly mindboggling concept.  Healthcare reform, Keynesian Economics (stimulus through spending), DADT, hate crime legislation, how many times have they extended unemployment benefits now?  Nevermind what they've discussed and tried to pass in terms of cap and trade, etc.  The driving issue this election is the deficit and the country's economic health, which polls consistently show that Americans don't think Obama has done enough on, and it also happens to be arguably the greatest Republic priority.

Nevermind the fact that in polling people have outright stated that they're likely to vote for Republicans just to keep liberal powers in check.  Bipartisan is a buzzword for a reason:  the country wants compromise, not extremism.
The Republicans win because of their commitment to principles. This country has more Democrats than Republicans, by several percentage points, but the conservative dominance of the last thirty years is all about motivating people to get to the polls, and it works, because Democrats don't show up to vote. You can't fire up people with halfway deals. You fire them up with principles.
I've never heard anyone argue that this is a center-left country; quite the contrary, I've even heard Chris Matthews say that this is a center-right country.  Statistics lately have shown that there are more Dems than Republicans, but we are a country of swinging pendulums politically.  Unless you actually have evidence that really established a long-term Democratic trend, then I have to admit I think that's a completely preposterous claim.  I also wonder what that says about liberals if you're right about that, and yet they've lost so many elections as of late.
Wow. I don't think I've ever heard someone argue that the environmentalists are losing because they try too hard. Talk about blaming the victim.

Nothing gets done because gigantic corporations with trillions of dollars oppose it. You and I might be concerned about global warming, but we don't make $30,000 donations to political PACs.
Doesn't take a lot of money really to manipulate.  I've watched several lectures on the subject of American Global Warming Denial, most of which pin the responsibility firmly on a fake research institute consisting of an unholy union between Cigarette Scientists/Lawyers and Reagan's Starwars Defense number-cookers.

But if you really want to point to a single event that actually changed opinions on Global Warming recently, Climategate is a perfect example of what I was talking about.  The East Anglia leaks showed a bunch of really questionable, possibly unethical, extremist attitudes in defense of their opinions.  Public trust for Global Warming has dropped since.  In the end it was shown that their science wasn't dubious by multiple investigations, but their attitude was.  Perfect example of extremism ruining the message.

Another good example is faults in the Intergovernmental Climate Change Panel at the UN's predictions, specifically the stuff about the melting of the icecaps and Himalayas.
Except that there has been progress - the same-sex marriage movement has been growing steadily since it entered the political scene. Prop 8 is a setback, but it's not an undoing.
Well, yes.  I'm arguing that the current path is dangerous.  We haven't seen into the future yet how this is gonna turn out.
Have you ever heard of the "Overton Window"? The Overton Window is the range of possibilities people conceive of, politically. "Moving the Window" requires pushing a concept until people take it for "normal". The Republicans do this very, very well. Republican elected officials and spokespersons float a concept, conservative media gobbles it up and plays it endlessly for a week, and by the end of the week people are reasonably convinced that Iraq has nukes or the President is a secret traitor, because everyone's talking about it. Today - right now - we are having a debate in this nation about revising the 14th Amendment, the one that freed the slaves, that made states obey the Federal Constitution, etc. Why? Because Republicans argue that terrorists are coming here and having babies that will grow up to kill us. This is beyond ridiculous, but it's being treated with total seriousness by the media, because enough people are talking about it.
It's funny, I listen to conservative media all the time -- especially talk radio.  I find myself so disgusted by the nonsense that they float when I'm tuned in that often I change the channel, but I keep listening.  Why?  I want to know what people who I disagree with are talking about, the arguments they make, and the rationale behind their decisions.  I want to understand why people who I disagree with feel how they do.

Yet recently, in all of the discussions about anchorbabies, I haven't heard anyone claim that it has anything to do with terrorism.  I would be willing to bet that it has been said -- there are a lot of crazy people out there on the right wing talk radio circuit.  It's something Michael Savage would say.  But you're acting as if that's a key talking point floating around in all of the discussions, which just really isn't the case from what I've seen.  Seizing upon one example and generalizing the entire movement is exactly what I'm talking about.  Extremism is bad.
Political progress requires setting outrageous goals, precisely because your opponents will think 'it's not so bad' when they meet you halfway, never mind that your halfway would have been outrageous a year ago.
The last 20 years of American Politics has been the strategy you describe as effective, but each administration and congress failed to actually get anything done of worth, then was voted out of power only to put in another group which the country quickly became disillusioned with also.  The extremist claims and pandering to principles gets people elected, but it doesn't get anything done.
In real life, we made it to the moon, then never went back and never will; also, the guy who inspired us to go to the moon was shot by an extremist. I'm not sure the example helps your case.
Bold for confusion.  Also the Kennedy thing really has nothing at all to do with making my comparison a false analogy, so I'm truly mystified.

Gonna be honest here:  I feel like I could've read your reply on the Huffington Post.
« Last Edit: August 19, 2010, 02:40:28 AM by Jude »

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #272 on: August 19, 2010, 09:44:46 AM »
In real life, we made it to the moon, then never went back and never will; also, the guy who inspired us to go to the moon was shot by an extremist. I'm not sure the example helps your case.

Bold for confusion.  Also the Kennedy thing really has nothing at all to do with making my comparison a false analogy, so I'm truly mystified.

Just going to point out that shooting Kennedy did nothing to derail the space-race.  In fact, it might have assisted it, simply because Kennedy was mourned so deeply when he was shot.  It's the old 'win one for the Gipper' (to invoke yet another president).  I've heard some say that if Kennedy had remained president, the scandals surrounding him might have derailed his lofty goals even more completely.

The reason that we went to the moon was not to establish a viable launch-platform - it was a highly visible destination to rally the U.S., and especially against the Big Bad Soviets who had sliced Europe in half.  For the last few decades, we have been working slowly - almost imperceptibly to the average American - on a much better platform for space exploration than the moon:  The International Space Station.

To attempt to drag this back to being relevant:  The mass marriages in California in 2007 were that initial volley in the 'marriage race'.  It's possible that we won't see something like that again, although if it does, I'm sure it will have its share of ticker-tape parades as well as people claiming that it never happened and was all staged by Hollywood.  The important thing is the work - much less flashy and behind the scenes - for something that provides a far more stable result. 

Keep in mind that the first legal same-sex marriage in the U.S. was performed in Massachusetts in 2004.  I'm not talking civil unions, which were legitimized in Vermont in 2000.  There has been a slow increase in the past 10 years (counting from Vermont) of states that have something that recognizes the legitimacy of same-sex couples.  Some have made it as far as equal marriage - some are still civil unions, but as recently as 1994, 45 of the 50 states had laws that defined 'marriage' as a heterosexual union.  I count 6 (including DC) that now officially recognize same-sex marriage as a marriage - and that's not counting California. Seven of the rest (including California) allow for either domestic partnership or civil unions. 

The times, they are a changin'.

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Re: Prop 8 struck down.
« Reply #273 on: August 19, 2010, 10:35:43 AM »
I think that's probably a good note to lock the thread on.

It will not be unlocked.