Belief Beat

Belief Beat


Religious Reactions Range to Overturn of Prop. 8 (Gay Marriage Ban)

posted by Nicole Neroulias

Updated at 6 p.m. to add more links.

U.S. Judge Vaughn Walker has struck down Proposition 8, California’s 2008 ban on same-sex marriages, finding it unconstitutional. It’s the latest battle lost in the conservative Christian war on gay marriage — see my July 22 post for other recent examples.

The L.A. Times reports that this could lead to a federal precedent;.CNN reports that opponents of same-sex marriage – including members of the Church of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) – plan to appeal this all the way to the Supreme Court. It’s not yet clear whether California will resume same-sex marriage ceremonies in the meantime. For more on the legal specifics, check out Religion Clause’s analysis.

Here are some more links to faith-related coverage of this news. Share your thoughts — and any other interesting links that I should add — in the Comments section below.

Check back for updates.

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kenneth

posted August 5, 2010 at 10:31 am


These are grim times indeed for bigotry.



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Charles Cosimano

posted August 5, 2010 at 10:45 am


Given the makeup of the Supreme Court, it will be interesting which way this goes in the probably 5/4 decision when the case gets there.
Personally, I have no axe to grind one way or the other on this and it will be great fun watching the outrage from whichever side ultimately loses.



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jestrfyl

posted August 5, 2010 at 11:09 am


Yeah! Hooray! Well done! Finally actual freedom over virtual theology, genuine truth over convenient fiction, Civil rights over uncivil discourse, LOVE over all!
As the old adage goes – we are ALL God’s children and God don;t make junk.



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Alicia

posted August 5, 2010 at 11:37 am


For my money it is a tie between Judge Vaughn Walker and Mayor Mike Bloomberg over who showed more political courage and wisdom in the past two days. Bravo to both men!
As usual, Andrew Sullivan has excellent coverage over on the Daily Dish.



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Pam

posted August 5, 2010 at 12:26 pm


Please do not be persuaded that laws restricting marriage to one man and one woman are hateful or take away anyone’s civil rights. Society has a right to deem certain behavior morally offensive and limit that behavior, for whatever reason, religious or otherwise. All our laws are formed around this basic principle. Marriage is no exception. It will always be subject to legal limits. For example, we do not allow a man to marry his father or mother, even if they’ll submit to sterilization. It seems unfair now by Judge Walker’s reasoning, doesn’t it? Does that make the incestuous an oppressed minority? Certainly not. Incest is just plain wrong. Society just happens to find the behavior morally offensive, and it has nothing to do with religion. Why then must society accommodate a man’s desire to marry another man? What is so different or right about that? Can a just and thoughtful society not find that behavior morally offensive? And if it does (as it has in Prop 8), why should society be wrong, rather than the behavior?
The discussion is sometimes clouded by claims of discrimination, that gay couples are being treated unfairly. Well, couples don’t have constitutional rights. Individuals do. Please note that our legal limits on marriage apply equally to all people. They are not discriminatory. These limits on marriage have nothing in common with the legalized racial discrimination of the past. Gays are already being treated equally. No laws specifically prohibit them from marriage. Prop 8 does not say, “Gays cannot marry.” They can marry… within the limitations shared equally by all people, one being that a man can only marry a woman. A straight man can’t marry another man. A gay man can marry a woman. How does the existing law treat them any differently? This is clearly not an equal rights issue.
So what do gays really want? All the civil rights of marriage are already guaranteed by domestic partnership laws. Among themselves, they could call their partnerships “marriage” and celebrate it the same way. Dress up. Have cake. I have no problem with that. But it’s not enough. They want to force the rest of society to call it marriage, too. They want to believe, even if it’s untrue, that the bulk of society accepts their relationships as normal, and loudly mock those who disagree as irrational, essentially evil or sick. Look, they’ll even play house, using innocent little children as props, in a desperate attempt to imitate the normalcy of heterosexual couples. Why? Because they are hoping to cure their debilitating self-esteem issues. They are defying nature, after all. How good and right can they feel during those rare moments of honest introspection? But getting one biased Judge/King to call 7,000,000 Californians evil or sick will not fix their self-esteem. For that they’ll need to admit to themselves that homosexuality is just plain wrong and stop believing that they can’t change. “Change we can believe in” is not just for other people. The people of California said it twice already (Props 22 and 8): gay marriage is morally offensive and we don’t want it. We shouldn’t have to explain ourselves. It’s enough. Our voice should be respected.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 5, 2010 at 12:45 pm


Pam,
“Please do not be persuaded that laws restricting marriage to one man and one woman are hateful or take away anyone’s civil rights.”
Sorry, but your post gave us no reason whatsoever not to think that. Prop H8 DID take away our civil rights. And that WAS hateful.
“Society has a right to deem certain behavior morally offensive and limit that behavior”
Ya mean like bigotry, prejudice, discrimination? They’re ALL morally offensive.
“we do not allow a man to marry his father or mother”
We don’t NEED to allow that – those people are already related. Marriage establishes kinship where none existed before. (Nice try – yet again – of trying to link same-sex marriage to incest. So typical of you ‘religious’ gay-bashers to do that. What’s next, the beastiality comparison?)
“It seems unfair now by Judge Walker’s reasoning, doesn’t it?”
No, it sounds more like delusional rantings from the ‘religious’ ‘right’.
“Why then must society accommodate a man’s desire to marry another man?”
Because of the Constitution which ‘guarantees’ ALL citizens equality before the law. Thanx 4 askin’.
“Can a just and thoughtful society not find that behavior morally offensive?”
No, frankly. A bigoted, irrationial society can, though.
“And if it does (as it has in Prop 8), why should society be wrong”
Because putting people’s rights and freedoms to a vote is UN-Constitutional, that’s why. “Society” was equally “wrong” when it did not permit inter-racial marriages.
“couples don’t have constitutional rights. Individuals do.
True. You betterosexual individuals have the right/freedom to marry the individual of your own mutual choosing. LBGT individuals are denied that right/freedom.
“Gays are already being treated equally.
This is a lie from the pit of Hades. There are 30 states in which one can be fired (or not hired) for beinng gay, or, for that matter, for being BELIEVED to be gay. In regards to marriage, there are 1,176 FEDERAL benefits that do not accrue to legally married same-sex couples. Lying makes the baby Jesus cry. It`s a sin (the bearing of false witness) – so STOP IT!
I could debunk the rest of your blatant B.S. (it`s awfully easy to disprove what you typed) but frankly, delusional liars are not worth the time and effort.



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Frank

posted August 5, 2010 at 1:12 pm


Pam,
For saying that gay people have the freedom to marry because they can marry a member of the opposite sex,
YOU DESERVE TO FIND OUT THAT YOUR HUSBAND IS A SEXUALLY ACTIVE, NEUROTIC CLOSET HOMOSEXUL.



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Henrietta22

posted August 5, 2010 at 1:14 pm


The lawyers David Boies, Ted Olson, and their wittnesses proved there is no reason not to permit SS marriages, in this trial. The opposers couldn’t prove it and ended up admitting that marriage is a fundamental right in our country. It will probably be appealed, and end up in the Supreme Court.



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BGJ

posted August 5, 2010 at 1:32 pm


So much for democracy. Thank goodness that we can live under the pronouncements of the elite! We need them to tell the ignorant masses the way things should be.



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pagansister

posted August 5, 2010 at 1:44 pm


Sorry, Pam, the court in CA totally disagreed with your non-logical comments. This issue is just that, a civil rights issue.
Am very happy that Prop 8 was over- turned. At one time folks were against interacial marriage, and fortunately that was changed. At one time the Black people of this country were discriminated against. Fortunately after a long struggle, that was changed. Equality applies to all, not the select few that some on the Christian right happen to feel are OK to receive equality.



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jestrfyl

posted August 5, 2010 at 2:55 pm


I cannot say where the Spirit/Soul/Essence of each person is. But I am fairly certain it is not somewhere in the pelvis! This pelvic ecclesiology is becoming such a distraction I am starting to suspect it is camouflage for other more genuine concerns. There are people whose stomachs are empty, whose brains are short circuited, and whose arms and legs lead them into a wide variety of self-destructive behaviors. The Church in all its forms; committees, boards, synods, conventions, missions, and other gatherings needs to look up from everyones’ pelvis and seek out the work required to assist the rest of the body.
This game of “don’t show me yours and I won’t show you mine” has taken far too much attention off the needs of the world.



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Alicia

posted August 5, 2010 at 2:55 pm


BSJ, an essential value of democracy is protecting the rights of the minority from the tyranny of the majority. If the majority decided tomorrow to pass a law denying civil rights to anyone with your initials, you might find the shoe was on the other foot.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 5, 2010 at 2:57 pm


I can never understand why people like BGJ revel in being one of the ignorant masses …
“So much for democracy.“
Seems the ignorant masses need to be reminded that the Judicial Branch is the 3rd Branch of government, the Branch who`s very job it is to interpret the Constitution. Why do you hate the Constitution so much, BGJ?
“Thank goodness that we can live under the pronouncements of the elite! We need them to tell the ignorant masses the way things should be.“
No, you (apparently) need them to remind you what the Constitution actually says, despite what you happen to wish it said.
Clearly the elite know more about it than the (purposefully?) ignorant masses.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 5, 2010 at 3:36 pm


Ah, what the heck – it`s too hot to go outside. May as well demolish the rest of the B.S. pile …`
“Gays can marry… within the limitations shared equally by all people, one being that a man can only marry a woman¸”
That is not a limitation shared by “all”. It doesn`t apply in Connecticut, nor in Iowa, nor in Massachusetts, nor in the District of Columbia, nor in Vermont, nor in New Hampshire. And soon, nor in California either. Nor does it apply in many faith communities that also embrace same-sex marriage. Seems you do not envision gay people in the “all”.
“A straight man can’t marry another man.”
Actually, yes he can – in the above named jurisdictions. The sexual orientation of the two people getting married is never questioned, only their gender. But why would he want to?
“A gay man can marry a woman.”
Why on earth would he/she/they do that? Why would marrying the person you love be restricted to opposite-sex couples? No one on the Prop 8 side came up with a valid reason to restrict it to people of the opposite sex. And I bet you can`t come up with one either.
“How does the existing law treat them any differently?”
See above. You may need an “elite” to explain it to you.
“This is clearly not an equal rights issue.”
Clearly the lawyers, the judge, I and many others disagree.
“So what do gays really want?”
Easy one – EQUALITY. It`s supposed to be guaranteed to ALL citizens by the US Constitution.
“All the civil rights of marriage are already guaranteed by domestic partnership laws.”
As explained above, this is simply (and demonstrably – i.e. PROVABLY) not true. In addition to the 1,176 FEDERAL benefits that are not given to already legally married gay couples, those state benefits that are bestowed are not portable across state lines like those of you betterosexuals.
“Among themselves, they could call their partnerships “marriage” and celebrate it the same way.”
Those of us that are already legally married call our marriages marriages becasue they ARE marriages. (And not just “among ourselves” either. That`s kinda the point.) Just because you don`t happen to like it doesn`t make it not true.
“They want to force the rest of society to call it marriage, too.”
Yes, I want society to recognize my legal marriage exactly the same way yours is recognized. Why would (or should) gay citizens accept second class status or treatment?
“They want to believe, even if it’s untrue, that the bulk of society accepts their relationships as normal”
We don`t frankly give a schyte what you think of us and our relationships. (What you DO think is amply clear in what you type.) We care about equal treatment before the law because it is guaranteed to ALL citizens.
“and loudly mock those who disagree as irrational, essentially evil or sick.”
Well, irrational and essentially evil, yes – because you demonstrate repeatedly that you are those things. But I don`t recall anyone on the pro-equality side ever calling someone on your side “sick” – that`s one that`s usually hurled at US, though.
“Look, they’ll even play house, using innocent little children as props, in a desperate attempt to imitate the normalcy of heterosexual couples.”
I take it back – that really was sick. We don`t “play house” – we set up homes, just like you do. We (my husband and I) don`t have children, so I`d love to know where you get this sick, delusional fantasy of our lives that includes “using children as props” – some of us ARE parents, you know, with REAL children. If you are typical of the `normal heterosexual`, I want to disassociate myself as far as possible from normal. You seem to have a very twisted idea of our reality.
“They are defying nature, after all.”
Um, not accordinng to nature.
“they’ll need to admit to themselves that homosexuality is just plain wrong and stop believing that they can’t change.”
Please explain exactly how homosexuality is “wrong”. Then please point us to one valid, documented case of this “change” you tout (shurely you meant “be cured”).
“The people of California said it twice already (Props 22 and 8)”
Your side fails to understand that the 14th Amendment is not – and never should be – up for a popular vote in the first place. Go ask a black person if you should be able to vote on their rights.
“gay marriage is morally offensive”
Sez you. Many others disagree. Your, er, `concern`is addressed in the Judge`s decision – you don`t get to prohibit the freedoms of others just because you may happen to find them morally repugnant. He11, I find YOU morally repugnant, but I would never want to vote on your rights and freedoms just because I do. (Though your post sorely tempts me to change my mind on that.)
“and we don’t want it.”
Then don`t have one. No one is forcing you to have one or your religion to perform them. In the meantime, there are many citizens who DO “want it” – and YOU don`t get to deny them that.
“Our voice should be respected.”
Say something worthy of respect and you`ll be respected. But not a moment sooner.



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Alicia

posted August 5, 2010 at 3:55 pm


Grumpy Old Person’s arguments are excellent. I would also suggest reading Dahlia Lithwick’s piece on SLATE, “A Brilliant Ruling: Judge Walker’s decision to overturn Prop 8 is factual, well-reasoned, and powerful”, which enumerates why this case was decided for the plaintiffs on matters of both fact and law:
http://www.slate.com/id/2262766/



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Robert C

posted August 5, 2010 at 5:16 pm


Pam even though I disagree with some of what you say I respect your views. There are many in my community who trump up outrage and pretend that a veneer of pomposity will mask their own hatreds and vindictiveness. They are becoming what they rail against. One interesting thing about marriage rights or spousal rights, that in its’ own inimicable way, gaining such a position will force the gay community to alter its focus away from the cheap sensationlistic hedonism of the past towards a more grounded rationality. In the past each societal change has influenced a swing of the pendulum. This will be no different. But I much prefer Charles positioning. It will be great fun watching all the predatory screwballs loose their feathers in melee that follows.



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Tommie

posted August 5, 2010 at 5:48 pm


If it were not for “Heteral-Sexual” Parents, These “sick people” would have never been born!! They need mental help!!! Has anyone read the story of “Sodom & Gommorah” lately???



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YourName

posted August 5, 2010 at 7:51 pm


Would we prefer that gay couples live together outside of marriage, or in a committed formal relationship?
I know too many gay couples who have children. For the sake of those children, we should not be in the business of preventing their parents from being married.
If you’ve ever been to a gay wedding, it will change your views. Gay weddings are focused on a couple making a lifetime commitment to one another. Straight weddings, on the other hand, are about the bride having the best day of her life, with dresses, cake, horse-drawn carriages, live bands at the reception and so on.
I know I am generalizing, but the idea that a marriage of straight people is somehow more holy than a marriage of gay people might be found in the Bible, but definitely not in real life.



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chevy56

posted August 5, 2010 at 11:27 pm


Tommy,
Yes, I read the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. They were destryoed for lack of hospitality, not homosexual practices. the law of the US is not determined by your belief in myths.



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TJ Ennis

posted August 6, 2010 at 12:45 am


What exactly are you people afraid of two people of the same sex getting married, confessing their love for one another and wanting to be loved? You should be ashamed of yourselves for keeping others from having the same love and respect you want us to believe you have at home. If you are really THAT worried about a gay wedding then maybe you have some serious issues at your home that need attention.



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For Truth

posted August 6, 2010 at 12:55 am


Sodom and Gomorrah were not destroyed for a lack of hospitality. Just becaue the History Channel says it, doesn’t make it so. Go to the source – the Bible.



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TJ Ennis

posted August 6, 2010 at 1:48 am


Grumpy Old Person,
I have to say that I loved reading your post! It’s about time that someone else stands up and tells it like it is. I am sick of someone thinking that they have any kind of right to tell me anything about how I or anyone I love should live their life.
I was raised in a Southern Baptist home where ministers were part of the family tree. They didn’t judge me when I told them that I was gay. They told me that they loved me and that was all there was to it. I believe the Bible says to “Not Judge” but that is all that so many seem to be doing. How Christian like is that? God would be so disappointed in them for that behavior.
It’s funny to me that those who shout from the mountain tops are the ones who have all the rights, laws and benefits going in their favor. Take only 1 of those away and watch how fast their opinions change!
Equality for ALL only means one thing, and nobody has the moral right to change that definition to make their point.



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Barb

posted August 6, 2010 at 6:49 am


Why would you bring this mandate before a gay judge….as if his choice of lifestyle wouldnt be a deciding factor….when is the homosexual community going to get it….it is all explained in the Book of Romans…..it is choice…God explains it to us….His statutes show us how to live our lives to honor Him…..there are those who walk in disobedience and want the world and the church to say it is all right…it will never happen and God says they will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven….it doesn’t get any clearer than that…



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Barb

posted August 6, 2010 at 6:56 am


Chevy 56: Sodomn and Gomorrhea were destroyed because of sin not lack of hospitality and the Holy Bible is not myth but God’s anointed word….those of us who have been given the gift of the Holy Spirit will speak God’s truth in an unbelieving and sinful world….the church needs to stand in the gap at this time and stand strong in defending His infallible Word!!!



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Robert C

posted August 6, 2010 at 9:51 am


He certainly should have recused himself. It was a biased decision.



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summers in sodom

posted August 6, 2010 at 10:11 am


Let me get this straight: God destroys Sodom because of those icky gays but sends angels to save Lot and his daughters who go on to commit drunken incest. God’s annointed word: gay=bad; incest=good.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 10:13 am


Robert C, if we followed your standards of law, no heterosexual judge could act as judge that involved in a case that involved heterosexuals, in fact there is a great article (not sure where I saw it) suggesting that this particular standard suggests that only white conservative heterosexual male judges are without potential bias.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 10:24 am


Here is a quote from the SLATE article I linked to above, by Dahlia Lithwick:
“…the whole point of this legal exercise—the lengthy trial, the spectacularly detailed finding of facts (80 of them! with subheadings!)—was to pit expert against expert, science against science, and fact against prejudice.
It’s hard to read Judge Walker’s opinion without sensing that what really won out today was science, methodology, and hard work. Had the proponents of Prop 8 made even a minimal effort to put on a case, to track down real experts, to do more than try to assert their way to legal victory, this would have been a closer case.
But faced with one team that mounted a serious effort and another team that did little more than fire up their big, gay boogeyman screensaver for two straight weeks, it wasn’t much of a fight. Judge Walker scolds them at the outset for promising in their trial brief to prove that same-sex marriage would “effect some twenty-three harmful consequences” and then putting on almost no case.”
Lithwick goes on to say that the plaintiffs presented 17 witnesses, while the defense presented 2. Clearly, this was not judicial bias but a triumph of reason over fear and hysteria.



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Robert C

posted August 6, 2010 at 10:57 am


How do you know what ‘my standards’ of law happen to be? You do not. Your example makes no sense to me for the simple reason that heterosexual jurists are not adjucating cases where heterosexual marriage itself is the object of the legal case. How someone could write an article with that reasoning as the basis of their argument and have it approved by their editors is laughable. In this case fundemental changes in the marriage laws of a state directly relating to the status of the legality of gay marriage, an issue repealed in a legal plebescite, was the sole issue to be decided. The recusal of a jurist has no bearing whatsoever upon whether the effectiveness of either the plantiff or the defense case presentation was a serious effort or not. The fact that the case having now been decided is questioned, not in the minds of Walker’s fellow jurists, but in the perception of the majority of citizerns who voted is unacceptable as law, and gives fundemental cause to be overturned on appeal. Despite the effective case presented by the plaintiffs, if the judge’s decision not to recuse himself was personal and based on ego, which it probably was, then he has done the gay community a diservice in the long run.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 11:06 am


Robert, if the majority votes tomorrow to take away the civil rights of everyone named Robert, you’ll suddenly clamor for equal protection. But when its a group you don’t like, then the majority should decide.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 11:09 am


Or perhaps all male judges should recuse themselves in divorce cases, since they will tend to favor the men in the case. Except that goes against the statistics, which is that women are (or historically have been) favored in divorce cases. The argument that a gay judge can’t decide a case that involves gay rights is equally as bogus.



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Robert C

posted August 6, 2010 at 11:36 am


Another absurd proposition. Keep your examples legally salient. A case for divorce already predicates that the marriage exists and is legally sanctioned. You also presume that all gay people encourage every legal maneuver in the battle simply because they are gay. I can assure you that many gay individuals have slightly differing perspectives. As a gay man I have variant reasoning on the issue and I would much rather see a majority win in a referendum or an alternate position proposed than continuing hostility that serves limited purpose. Additionally rather than focus so much animus against Christians who have religious hesitation to the issue, more energy should be turned to educating the black community who voted in inordinate numbers for proposition 8′s passage.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 11:59 am


Here’s one of the comments, by a lawyer quoted on the Daily Dish, which may be more “legally salient” than mine since I am not a lawyer:
“I really, really hate – as in, this is extra special slimy, even for them – the fact that only now, since the Prop 8 proponents have lost, is the whole “he’s gay, should he have recused himself” meme starting to take hold. Folks, if you think your judge should recuse himself, you put on your big boy or girl pants and you file the damn motion.”



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 12:03 pm


And from the same lawyer:
“The point is this: if you are a good lawyer, and you’ve got grounds, you file that motion. And if you don’t file it, either a) you’re not a good lawyer, or b) you got no grounds in the first place, and you know it.
And the Prop 8 proponents knew it. And didn’t file it. Because there was nothing to file. It’s no more bias to be gay in this case than it would to be African American, Latino, Jewish or female in a discrimination case. This is a smear. And a cowardly smear at that. Nothing less.”



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Robert C

posted August 6, 2010 at 12:22 pm


Oh dear me. Excuse me for disagreeing with one whacky lawyer expounding on the Daily Dish. By all means sacred legal ground.
There is a decided difference in the lower court decision in an individual discrimination case and the reversal of a plebiscite on appeal which may or may not have constitutional grounds in and of itself. Doesn’t matter if they filed the motion or not in the past. it matters if they file it now. And the lawyer knows full well that the situation isn’t a smear, simply but perhaps hyperbole to subborn his views. I can give you four score differing legal opinions on the matter. Which is reason itself to respect plebiscites in many cases.



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Alicia

posted August 6, 2010 at 12:33 pm


Robert, why do you assume this lawyer is the wacky one?
Seriously, it appears from where I sit that the defense didn’t present a good case because the defense could only appeal to prejudice and fear. That works when you are exploiting voter psychology but it doesn’t necessarily work when you are appearing in court, deciding matters of “fact and law.”
Yes, it’s quite possible the judge’s decision may be overturned on appeal on some of the grounds you suggest. But there is a reason why our constitution was written to protect the rights of the minority, and why it is hard to amend the constitution. Because sometimes the majority votes to take away the rights of the minority, and sometimes the majority is wrong.



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Robert C

posted August 6, 2010 at 2:34 pm


Because no lawyer should “really, really hate” an opposing counsel in a legal case. Moreover, if the opposition is able to appeal to prejudice and fear perhaps the gay community would be better served presenting a better veneer on the culture rather than insisting that everything about that culture be accepted posthaste by others who have an honest and fundemental difference with that culture. The constitution was never written to explicitly protect minority rights, or else slavery would have been abolished as the ink dried on the last signature. However it has proven ‘flexible’. The beauty of being flexible is that change occurs in stages and therefore every has time and space to adjust. In this matter there is neither wrong nor right. It is simply a matter of perspective and whose values you adopt.



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pagansister

posted August 6, 2010 at 8:47 pm


OK, folks above, does that mean that if a defendant is white, a white judge can’t preside, because he would want to excuse the person’s crime because he/she is the same color? Or a black judge for the same reason…no conviction because the defendant is black like he/she is? (or Latino, or Irish, or Jewish etc. could go on and on). How about a crime involving harm to someone’s mother, or father does that mean that every judge who has a mother or father can’t preside, because he/she would want the person punished because the defendant killed/hurt his mother or father. That would mean there would not be any judges because they all had/have a mother or father. Thus, no trials etc. See where this is going? To SILLY land. All my examples are as silly as saying that the judge who made this ruling shouldn’t have presided because he is(or might be?) gay!



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Barb

posted August 7, 2010 at 4:36 am


Look back through history at the great societies and their fall….,when did it happen ?? It took place when they became corrupt, decadent and lost all sense of morality…..we are there right now….we arent just here by chance…there is a greater power and His will will be done…..not ours.



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Alicia

posted August 7, 2010 at 11:15 am


Hi, Robert,
The problem I have with your argument is what it basically amounts to, IMO, is this: It’s not that the plaintiff presented a better case (because they had one) and the defense presented a weak case, it’s that the judge was biased. It is entirely possible that the plaintiff could have presented the stronger case and the defense the weaker, and the judge could also be biased in favor of the plaintiff.
It is also possible that the same thing could happen, and the judge might have found for the defense because he was biased against gays. That will be decided on appeal. And when it is appealed, the judges in that appeal might also be biased, but I don’t imagine you’ll complain about it if those judges are biased against gay marriage.
However, the appeal process does ensure that these matters will receive the scrutiny they deserve. We’ll see what happens. One thing is certain – no matter what is decided, someone will be complaining about biased judges after the outcome.



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Henrietta22

posted August 7, 2010 at 1:53 pm


Prop eight should never have been voted on to begin with. Civil rights are not subject to a majority rule.



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Robert C

posted August 7, 2010 at 2:00 pm


Look. Let’s make this clear. I am a gay man who has fought on the front lines for gay rights for 40 years. I am pro equal rights for gays and lesbians and have paid enough of a price fighting that fight many times over. There are many issues relative to gay people that still need to be properly addressed, such as equal rights in the workplace, the ability to serve in the military, etc. I am pro long term mutually rewarding gay relationships bound by whatever constraints or partnership pacts floats your boat. Marriage though is a bit of a different beast. Historically “marriages” were civil contracts or business agreements and as such were contructed as such. Various competing states and religions officially complicated these pacts during the Reformation culminating in the Marriage Ordinance of Geneva which imposed requirements joining civil agreements to religious sanction, other nations followed suit. By precedent “marriages” have been construed with nothing but restrictions dependant on where, whom, why and how. If the state is officially the marriage arbitor, it has precedant to officially restrict access. The ability for gay people to join in a contract and to protect that contract with legal sanctions via power of attorney has been there from the get go. It is all semantics at this point, and that is the point. I personally would like to see the government totally out of the marriage business. And I do not believe that gay rights have been well served by the whole ‘marriage’ argument. We have created a whole new class of bigots in order to combat an older bigotry. Proposition 8 is an overblown pissing contest. That the jurist adjucating the latest push and shove happens to be gay is irrelevant in one perspective however it is devastating in another. If you fail to perceive that no matter. Here is an interesting conversation with two gay men who advance a similar position to one I hold.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEo4JEaBSgo&feature=player_embedded



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Robert C

posted August 7, 2010 at 2:04 pm


PS Why is marriage a civil right? Rather it is a business arangement that has risen to the level of a protected class.



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Henrietta22

posted August 7, 2010 at 5:56 pm


Robert C. I learned more about the whys and hows of marriage then I care to know from your post. Because you are satisfied with how you have examined the subject and others you know, that’s fine, but there are many others who want to be married (gay) the traditional way, and with that the affirmation that they are indeed as fine as anyother heterosexual couple that is married. My husband and I have been married for 57 yrs. and a business arrangement was never thought of. We have gay friends that managed to marry in CA, and their’s is not a business affair either.



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Mordred08

posted August 7, 2010 at 7:30 pm


“if the opposition is able to appeal to prejudice and fear perhaps the gay community would be better served presenting a better veneer on the culture rather than insisting that everything about that culture be accepted posthaste by others who have an honest and fundemental difference with that culture.”
I think that’s pretty much been tried already. Apparently, people who are prejudiced enough against you won’t be swayed no matter how many times you politely explain to them that you don’t want to molest their children, lock up religious people and bring about the end of western civilization.
“In this matter there is neither wrong nor right.”
Yeah, try telling that to the other side.



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Robert C

posted August 7, 2010 at 8:29 pm


Similar to trying to talk to the queer cabal ( as I refer to them ). Brick walls are not endemic to any one philosophical viewpoint or political affiliation. There are many cultural variations on the marriage theme along with the reasoning for each. Love being a late comer to the table. If love though is truly love, then everything else is relatively inconsequential. Rather than allowing gay ‘marriage’, whatever that is, we should be abolishing state involvement in “marriages” for everyone. Leave marriage for the religious. Don’t we have enough protected classes?
Here is a well constructed piece by David Harsanyi that explores a contra-approach.
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2010/08/06/time_for_a_divorce_106646.html
“Imagine if government had no interest in the definition of marriage. Individuals could commit to each other, head to the local priest or rabbi or shaman — or no one at all — and enter into contractual agreements, call their blissful union whatever they felt it should be called and go about the business of their lives.”



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Mordred08

posted August 8, 2010 at 9:43 pm


Robert C: “Similar to trying to talk to the queer cabal ( as I refer to them ).”
Curious…do you refer to them as “the queer cabal” when you’re actually talking to them? Cause that may have something to do with why nobody listens to you.
“Rather than allowing gay ‘marriage’, whatever that is, we should be abolishing state involvement in “marriages” for everyone. Leave marriage for the religious.”
What about religious groups that have no problem marrying same-sex couples? They do kind of exist, you know. Also, what about atheists who want to get married? Do you believe they should be barred from this now, even if they’re procreating non-deviant heterosexuals? (Well, more like semi-deviant as they have failed to accept Jesus Christ as their personal savior, but you get the idea.)



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robert c

posted August 9, 2010 at 9:59 am


Your missing the point. Religions should be free to marry whomever they want in religious ceremonies governed by the laws and restrictions by which they always have been governed. If the government was out of the marriage business anyone who wanted to register a domestic partnership could. Anyone who wanted to be “married” in the church of their own choosing would. Or both.
As far as the queet cabal. That is refering to members of my own community who blindly ape the posturing and machinations of the left without thought or rationality because the Advocate or some other gay rag says it must be so. Or they have been in such mindless lockstep billowing and blathering the party line for years on gay liberation that they have lost all sensitivity to the full spectrum of issues. Thankfully there are enough gay men and women who are thoughtful enough to take a restrained political stance, are postured somewhere in the middle, are are also just conservative enough to have a rationale conversation with about gay issues.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 9, 2010 at 11:45 am


For Truth
August 6, 2010 12:55 AM
Sodom and Gomorrah were not destroyed for a lack of hospitality. Just becaue the History Channel says it, doesn’t make it so. Go to the source – the Bible.
@ For “Truth”,
Sorry, but Ezekiel says you are wrong.
DO BETTER!



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 9, 2010 at 5:21 pm


Robert C wrote (fallaciously):
“heterosexual jurists are not adjucating cases where heterosexual marriage itself is the object of the legal case”
So very, very wrong. Heterosexuals are already allowed to marry. Heterosexual marriage was in no way “the object of the legal case”. The equal treatment before the law of gay American citizens was the object of the case.
More delusional imaginings do NOT help your cause.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 9, 2010 at 5:34 pm


Robert C,
“A case for divorce already predicates that the marriage exists and is legally sanctioned.”
Such blather. You may not accept reality, but gay marriages also “already exist” – some 18,000+ of the in the pertinent state (CA), and many, many more in the other 6 American jurisdictions that allow them.
Speaking of “Another absurd proposition. Keep your examples legally salient” yourself.
“As a gay man I have variant reasoning on the issue and I would much rather see a majority win in a referendum or an alternate position proposed than continuing hostility that serves limited purpose.”
As another gay man, I would rather not have my rights and freedoms put to a popular vote in the first place. (And I’m not sure why you would.) The Constitution is there to protect minorities from the tyranny of the majority.
“Additionally rather than focus so much animus against Christians who have religious hesitation to the issue”
Anyone’s religious opinions or beliefs are irrelevant in a country that promises freedom of religinn. Since those so-called “Christians” are responsible for the animus in the first place, maybe if they minded their own businness, there wouldn’t be so much counter animus. Plus, your comment ignores those other Christians (and Jews, and other religious folk) who do not “have religious hesitation on the issue”, but embrace it instead. Speak to me of their/our freedom of religion. Currently, they/we don’t have it. That, TOO, is UN-Constitutional.
“more energy should be turned to educating the black community who voted in inordinate numbers for proposition 8′s passage.”
Although I agree with the sentiment, I still have not beeen convinced that ANYONE – black OR white – should get to vote on the rights and freedoms of others. That’s something you refuse to address as an injustice. You seem to want to wallow in letting other people decide on your freedoms. Sorry, but count me out.



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Robert C

posted August 9, 2010 at 10:16 pm


Your comments are irrelevant and miss the points, as usual.



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Mordred08

posted August 10, 2010 at 1:37 am


Robert C: “As far as the queet cabal. That is refering to members of my own community who blindly ape the posturing and machinations of the left without thought or rationality because the Advocate or some other gay rag says it must be so. Or they have been in such mindless lockstep billowing and blathering the party line for years on gay liberation that they have lost all sensitivity to the full spectrum of issues. Thankfully there are enough gay men and women who are thoughtful enough to take a restrained political stance, are postured somewhere in the middle, are are also just conservative enough to have a rationale conversation with about gay issues.”
At least us stupid unthinking liberal homos have enlightened conservative souls such as yourself to tell us what beliefs an intelligent queer should have.



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Robert C

posted August 10, 2010 at 1:06 pm


Eh. Jumping to conclusions again Mordred. Long time Democrat here. Actually for many years a strident liberal and activist. But simply because at this point in a divisive debate I am willing to look at both sides of a coin is no reason to pause and consider the merits of what I have to say. And if you happen to disagree by all means resort to the same, typical ad hominem attacks popular in drag bars during cocktail hour.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 11, 2010 at 1:44 pm


robert C,
“There is a decided difference in the lower court decision in an individual discrimination case and the reversal of a plebiscite on appeal which may or may not have constitutional grounds in and of itself.”
“may or may not have constitutional grounds”??? The Constitution is the very basis of Judge Walker’s reasoned decision. And Prop 8 violated it on ALL counts – the very things you so readily dismiss as “irrelevant and [that I] miss the points”. Sorry, but it is YOU who not only “miss the point” but refuse to even acknowledge it – namely, that it is UN-Constitutional to bote on other people’s rights. It is, in fact, you seem completely comfortable with. Strange that you’re willing to give up your rights and freedoms so easily. I simply am not.
“rather than focus so much animus against Christians who have religious hesitation to the issue”
You also refuse to debate/address the freedom of religion that is denied to those Christians (and people of several other faiths than the Christian one) who may not freely exercise their beliefs under the currrent laws, those who embrace same-sex marriage but are forbidden to perform them, not to mention have them legally recognized.
Why do you hate the Constitution so much?



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 11, 2010 at 2:02 pm


“Because no lawyer should “really, really hate” an opposing counsel in a legal case.”
I guess I missed where this “really, really hate” quote came from. Can anyone assist me with either a link or a post wherein the anti-Prop8 lawyers said that?
“if the opposition is able to appeal to prejudice and fear”
That is ALL the anti-equality side did. It is indefensbile, imnsho.
“The constitution was never written to explicitly protect minority rights, or else slavery would have been abolished as the ink dried on the last signature.”
Um, that’s why it got amended. Why do you hate the 14th Amendment so?
“In this matter there is neither wrong nor right.”
I call major B.S. IT is NEVERR ‘right’ to vote on the rights and freedoms of others. Just because you seem to like it happening is immaterial.
“I am a gay man who has fought on the front lines for gay rights for 40 years.”
“fought”??? You like to roll over and let other people vote on your rights. Sorry, that ainn’t fighting for equal rights – it’s abdicating the battle.
“I am pro equal rights for gays and lesbians”
Your words say that; your actions disprove it.
“Historically “marriages” were civil contracts or business agreements and as such were contructed as such.”
That will come as a big shock to those “Christians” who keep on insisting on all these threads that marriage is merely, always and ONLY a religious institution. One belonging to their religion only, apparently.
“If the state is officially the marriage arbitor, it has precedant to officially restrict access.”
True. But there must be valid grounds upon which to restrict that access. Being gay (or ‘religious’/moral animus against gays being treated equally before the law) is not a valid one.
The ability for gay people to join in a contract and to protect that contract with legal sanctions via power of attorney has been there from the get go.”
And they are routinely ignored in many jurisdictions. “Families” and their lawyers make sure of that, sadly. The examples of these are myriad and easily found.
“We have created a whole new class of bigots”
No, those bigots ‘created’ themselves.
“Proposition 8 is an overblown pissing contest.”
Why do you value equality before the law so very little?



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 11, 2010 at 2:34 pm


That you would post a link to a video of Tea Baggers “discussing” gay marriage, one of whom holds a sign that says “Freedom is fabulous” is so highly ironic and laffable.
Not so coincidental is their parrotting the anti-SSM line that ‘the government should get out of marriage’, especially considering that you admit that marriage is a civil contract over which the state is the official arbitor. If the government does ‘get out of marriage’, who’s going to arbitrate said civil contracts, the Church? (Laff.) And if so, WHICH Church? (Mine is for them.)
These 2 “gays” want to downgrade all marriages – even the heterosexual ones – to “civil” unions (whatever they are in whatever jurisdiction one happens to be – so many states have banned even CUs, and many others won’t recognize CUs, nor does the Federal government). I don’t think too many betterosexuals will be on board with such a second-class arrangement occasioned by such a leaky legal argument.
And then they have the gall to say, “Then go get married in your church.” Now even non-religious hets aren’t allowed to marry, per your side.
And THEN they worsen it by saying, “Why is the government even involved in marriage – everyone’s equal.” It is preposterous statements like this that inform me your side is merely delusional. They even admit it’s a shaky ‘argument’ by adding, “And everything that isn’t taken care of – like visitation rights, social security …” Um, so much for the “everyone’s equal” lie. He11, they even want everyone, including already legally married couples (presumably the str8 ones) to file their taxes as individuals. And THEN they say that we’d all need powers of attorneys – what a legal MESS you/they propose. (And that’s only in the first minute of the nearly 5 minute video. Shurely there are better, more “reasoned” – your wish – more articulate spokespersons for your anti-equality cause.
THey insist marriage is a contract (it is) and only contracts are recognized by the Constitution and that ‘marriage is recognized equally under the law”.
These poor sops lament being called “Auntie Toms”. Well, let me fetch them a mirror. If they’re the best you can do, then frankly you deserved to lose.
DO BETTER!



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 11, 2010 at 2:52 pm


You ask, “Why is marriage a civil right?”
Because established law and legal precedents made it so. I thought even YOU would have known that.
“There are many cultural variations on the marriage theme along with the reasoning for each.”
There ARE? Not according to the “religious” ‘right’ – it’s 1 man, 1 woman, for life. Period. Full stop. Your statement will be revelatory to them, I’m sure.
“If love though is truly love, then everything else is relatively inconsequential.”
Au contraire. Sorry, but losing one’s partner is NOT “inconsequential”. Nor is being denied their pension, an inheritance, having one’s children taken away, losing one’s home, being denied hospital (and even funeral) visitation rights. Your relationship must be pretty “inconsequential” for you to say that.
“Leave marriage for the religious.”
So now you won’t even allow non-religious heterosexuals to marry. Plus, you seem to forget about the myriad religious gay people. They will, if your will be done, be MARRIED. I thought you didn’t want that outcome.
“Religions should be free to marry whomever they want in religious ceremonies governed by the laws and restrictions by which they always have been governed.”
Except for the fact (too bad facts so frequently get in your way) that marriages have not “always been governed” the same way. Why, inter-racial marriages were once illegal, or so I’m told.
Sorry Robert. You have failed miserably to make even ONE valid, “reasoned” argument. Marriage works fine, no new second-class institution need be invented for those you hold so much in contempt.



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Father Doneau

posted August 21, 2010 at 8:19 pm


The biggest point of argument that Christendom uses to try to restrict marriage to one man and one woman is the idea of procreation. What makes this argument not only laughable but hypocritical is that there are currently no laws banning infertile human beings (aka sterile, physically incapable of producing offspring, etc…) from marrying. If procreation is allowed as a viable argument against same-sex marriage, then such a law barring infertile persons from ever marrying should be immediately drafted and enacted. If, however, infertile couples continue to be allowed to marry, then the whole argument for marriage based on procreation is unconstitutional.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 23, 2010 at 3:18 pm


Father Doneau,
We’ve been saying that for years now. Sadly, the RRR just don’t get reason and logic (the very things touted in Judge Walker’s ruling). They are anathema to them.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted August 31, 2010 at 2:28 pm


Gosh, you debunk all the lies and myths and those who initiated them just disappear like rats jumping off a sinking ship.



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