Thursday, June 27, 2013

DOMA, Prop 8, and various rants about the decision

So most people probably know the news about one of the key parts of DOMA being overturned, giving married gay couples federal benefits. Also the courts refusal to rule on prop 8, making my new home state of California the thirteenth state to legalize gay marriage.

Not all of DOMA was overturned, of course, only the part that bared the federal government from recognizing the unions, so I can’t say the job is done. Yet, while I join gay rights advocates throughout this country in celebration of this victory some people were not so happy. 

Bill Donohue of the Catholic League suggests an amendment to the U.S. the constitution banning same sex relationships, undeterred, it seems, by the miniscule chance of ever getting a two-thirds majority in either the senate or the house to make such a thing a reality.

Former Governor Mike Huckabee and the Dan T. Cathy owner of Chick-fil-A expressed their displeasure. Though Mr. Cathy deleted his post shortly afterword's.

Tony Perkins had this to say:

While we are disappointed in the Supreme Court's decision to strike down part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the court today did not impose the sweeping nationwide redefinition of natural marriage that was sought. Time is not on the side of those seeking to create same-sex 'marriage.'  As the American people are given time to experience the actual consequences of redefining marriage, the public debate and opposition to the redefinition of natural marriage will undoubtedly intensify.

In a sense I actually agree with him. As American’s realize that the negative consequences of redefining marriage are little to nothing and everything is fine public opposition to people like Tony Perkins will intensify. His statement honestly seems like nothing more than a rationalization. Support for gay marriage has been improving, and the biggest divide is over age not politics. 73 percent of those under 30 support gay marriage compared to 53 percent of the general population so in all likelihood those as time passes fewer and fewer people will support his cause, and unless Perkins is totally ignorant he knows it.

I found justice Scalia’s criticism particularly interesting. He descents by saying this:

But the Court has cheated both sides, robbing the winners of an honest victory, and the losers of the peace that comes from a fair defeat. We owed both of them better. I dissent.

This is strange to me, does Scalia really think that gay rights advocates did not work hard for this victory just because it was won in a court case instead of in congress? Does he really think that most of the those against gay marriage would gracefully accept defeat if it came from congress instead of the supreme court? Since I was once a fundamentalist I have the odd distinction of having been on both sides of the debate, and his dissent makes no sense to me.

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