27 January 2010

The battle of California

While most liberal bloggers are understandably pre-occupied with last week's events and the upcoming State of the Union speech, don't forget that the Proposition 8 trial in California is also winding down; today should be the last day of actual testimony, though the judge's verdict will not come until several weeks after that.

From what I've seen on the Prop. 8 Trial Tracker, the proceedings have had something of the flavor of Kitzmiller v. Dover* about them. The creationists could sound superficially convincing in distortion-filled propaganda aimed at people with little actual knowledge, but under expert cross-examination, they imploded; they had no coherent case. Here, similarly, SSM opponents seem unable to offer any rational basis for their position, only prejudice which has never needed to be defended logically, and cannot be; there's no "there" there.

The implications of this trial could be enormous; remember that it is being conducted in federal court, with the plaintiffs claiming that Proposition 8 violates the federal Constitution. The verdict could end up being appealed to the Supreme Court, which in turn could conceivably lead to a ruling from that body that anti-SSM laws are unconstitutional -- which would sweep away such laws nationwide at one stroke. It would be a victory to rank with the Civil Rights Act, Loving v. Virginia, or Roe v. Wade.

*On the fascinating Kitzmiller v. Dover trial, I recommend Edward Humes's lively book Monkey Girl, which I will probably review on this blog at some point.

6 Comments:

Anonymous NickM said...

Ah, the power of the irrational!

It is a great tragedy that it has such power. But it has because it can't be tackled using empirical or logical reasoning.

As far as same-sex marriage is concerned (specifically)...

It will weaken marriage. Of course it shall! The minute a pair of lesbians walked into Manchester (UK) registry office I stopped loving my wife. The minute two blokes did it I started "cottaging".

The "weakens marriage" argument is so lame it needs a government mobility scooter to get around.

I apologise for the metaphor considering your hip Infidel but...

But... Marriage is essentially (and I use that e-word in every sense) between two people and is not really about society or whatever other abstractions loons wish to tack-on.

I got married primarily because it just felt right and I wanted my girlfriend to be my absolute next of kin.

The peculiar bugbear that in some bizarre way Adam and Steve getting hitched makes Nick and Lizzy's marriage less secure or meaningfull is beyond a joke.

Yet, that seems to be the line they take.

Alas, in the UK NewLabour did their usual klutzing and we now have gay "civil-partnerships" rather than marriage (why do I get the distinct feeling that the difference is to just multiply the extent of family law by making it just slightly different?)

It really narks me that this can even be a subject for ferocious discussion in this century.

In the UK registry office marriages are aggresively (to a fault) secular. One (straight) couple a few years back got in trouble for wanting to have the Robbie Williams song "Angels" played at their wedding.

So... If it ain't religous - and in my personal case we are talking about the marriage of an atheist to an agnostic - what the hell is the fuss over?

I mean we are not asking the cardinal or bishop to sanctify anything - they're too busy fondling the choir anyway.

We just want our union to be legally recognised and I see no reason whatsoever why that same right should not apply to any two consenting adults.

And I'm not even a florist or in the limousine hire business or anything that migjht make a few bob. That's my point. Gay and lesbian marriage does nothing for me and it takes nothing from me.

Who are these troglodytes who object to gay marriage? Might they be the same people who regard homosexuals as intrinsically agents of promiscuity?

I think they might.

27 January, 2010 07:02  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

One does wonder at some of these claims and the people making them.

Marriage would indeed have to be a very feeble institution indeed to be weakened by being opened to homosexuals (relatively few of whom, I suspect, would take advantage of the offer anyway).

And what kind of people tend to worry so ostentatiously about this? It seems to be paragons like Vitter, Sanford, Craig, Ensign -- whose own marriages are about as sturdy as Iris Robinson's.

Who are these troglodytes who object to gay marriage? Might they be the same people who regard homosexuals as intrinsically agents of promiscuity?

Same people. It's either envy or projection.

Having such a secular society as Britain does will help when the issue next arises over there. Unfortunately, over here, religion is omnipresent and works its way in everywhere where it's not wanted, like sand during a shagging session on the beach. Prop. 8 would probably never have passed in the first place had it not been for the support of the Mormon church, whose own history with respect to the institution of marriage is perhaps best left undiscussed. Fortunately our court system has a good track record of upholding separation of church and state.

Legal recognition, as you say, is exactly the issue. Many tragic situations have arisen because gay couples did not have access to it.

27 January, 2010 07:39  
Blogger TRUTH 101 said...

The bad deal on this is that the Supreme Court will eventually decide. The five creeps that decided a 60 year old law was unconstitutional would have no problem deny the same right to marry heteros enjoy to Gays.

27 January, 2010 13:11  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Well, as I've said elsewhere, I'm no Constitutional expert, but given the wording of the First Amendment, I can't see how the Supreme Court had any alternative but to strike down the political-spending limits.

Given the merits of the case and the evident weakness of the opposing arguments, there's at least a realistic chance that they would strike down Prop. 8 as well, though I'd be happier if the case reached there after Obama had had a chance to replace Scalia and/or Kennedy.

I think it's worth a shot. Remember, even an unfavorable ruling would leave us no worse off than we are now.

27 January, 2010 13:24  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

One of the most fascinating thing's to me about our society is the hypocrisy. I see on one hand masses of people who hang in these cult's and herd mentality constantly whining about how sacred marriage is to them, yet they abuse every aspect of it's "value's" through their affair's and other violation's of everything they vow to. Many straight married men getting free blowjob's in adult film arcade's on long lunch break's, even many women engaging in act's when hubby isnt around with other gal's, our prison's are full of straight's who love to indulge in having sex with each other when they dont have an opposite partner, etc. Even many of these whiner's who say it bother's them to have ss marriage you would probably find cd's in their home's of artist's such as Elton John, Wladziu.V. Liberace, Freddie Mercury (Queen vocalist) or other's who are "openly" gay and even married in some cases.

Thank You .......

28 January, 2010 06:20  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

.....free blowjob's.....

The phrase that can explain almost anything.....

28 January, 2010 12:45  

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