Lesbians Are Cool, and Straights Are Fools

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California's ballot measure to ban gay marriage is failing.

The Field Poll survey firm found 51 percent of voters oppose the measure, which proposes an amendment to the state's constitution recognizing marriage as only between a man and woman, while 42 percent were in favor.

The biggest measure of how the marriage issue has faded is, I think, the lack of interest in this California measure. Go back and read media clips from this point in 2004: it was like firecrackers had been placed under every church pew in America. Yet California opposition to gay marriage has dropped 20 points in eight years (61 percent voted to define marriage as one-man-one-woman in 2000) and, eh, the "Protect Marriage" folks seem lost. Initiative supporters have raised $2.3 milion in a state where the last serious contested statewide race (the 2004 Senate race) cost about $22 million.

Headline explained here.

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  1. With a thread title like this, I was hoping for some nice google contextual ads.

  2. Nice Frogs reference.

  3. This thread reminds me of the time I got a watermelon seed up my snootsnout.

  4. Depends on turnout. A nine point gap is close enough that if the fundies turn out in droves, and the liberals not so much so, this could pass.

  5. I should clarify that when I first came onto this thread, the ads were something about oil drilling and gasoline. Apperently they don’t remain constant.

  6. “I should clarify that when I first came onto this thread, the ads were something about oil drilling and gasoline. Apperently they don’t remain constant.”

    Well the drilling part might apply.

  7. Depends on turnout. A nine point gap is close enough that if the fundies turn out in droves, and the liberals not so much so, this could pass.

    Are you kidding? The fundies are busy ritually suiciding because the GOP doesn’t love them anymore.

  8. I was hoping for more Russian Teenage Lesbian dating-website ads 🙁

  9. Depends on turnout. A nine point gap is close enough that if the fundies turn out in droves, and the liberals not so much so, this could pass.

    Are you kidding? The fundies are busy ritually suiciding because the GOP doesn’t love them anymore.

    Staying home and not voting for a RINO =/= staying home and not voting against Teh Gais Assault on the Sanctity of Marriage.

    I’m guessing you don’t spend much time around actual fundies if you think those two are the same in the minds of fundies.

  10. prolefeed —

    I spend enough time around them to know they are fucking depressed about voting in general, and most of the ones I know personally either don’t truck with the “sanctity of marriage” fools or think it’s a done deal and lost cause.

    Then again, I live in Rhode Island, so there’s that. Funny, most Catholic state in the country, and you’d be hard pressed to find someone who will say a bad word about homosexuality. Our capital even has a gay mayor.

  11. I was so bored on a long drive today through Kentucky that I finally tuned to one of the bible-thumpin’ stations (of which there are zillions).
    The preacher was explaining what I think is standard theology, namely, God gives you all the rope you need to hang yourself. So, what I’m saying is that I suspect rank and file “Bible-thumpers” are not really and truly comfortable trying to rig govenment to conform to the voices they hear in their heads. They know precisely what God is telling them as individuals, but they are not willing to assume God needs government assistance for enforcement purposes. After all, they oppose government assistance for minorities.
    Not that they are quite ready to blow the whistle on James Dobson and those of his ilk. We can hope that that will be next.

    Ruthless

  12. Recent news events explain why talk radio is so far to the right.

    Wingnuts like being preached to, the “whiners” on the left like to complain and not listen.

  13. Depends on turnout. A nine point gap is close enough that if the fundies turn out in droves, and the liberals not so much so, this could pass.

    I’m thinking liberal turnout is going to be pretty high this year.

  14. LOl, they are only cool if they are HOT!

    JT
    http://www.FireMe.To/udi

  15. The 2004 senate race was not contested. It was a blowout.

    The last contested statewide race in CA was actually the 2006 gubernatorial race.

  16. Jusatin Watts.
    Your link did diddley for moi.
    Thanks for wasting my time.

  17. Someone in CA correct me if I’m reading this wrong but it seems that you can amend the California constitution with a simple majority vote. Am I reading this right? Does this help explain why the state is so irrational?

  18. If you thought Libertarian Girl was hot, wait til you meet Libertarian Lesbian!

  19. Eight years ago no one had heard of gay marriage. It was a new shocking concept. It was completely off the radar screen. Yet we were told by our moral superiors that we had to adopt that belief without stopping to think about it. If we didn’t immediately grant marriage licenses to homosexuals then we were evil reactionary bigots who deserved to die.

    So of course there was a backlash! The progressives brought it on themselves.

    But we’ve had eight years to digest the concept. That’s why it’s not such a big deal now.

    p.s. Just don’t advocate legalizing polygamy or granting tax breaks to unmarried singles! You’ll start the whole brouhaha all over again! Marriage is ONLY between two individuals, and that’s the way God intended it! Next thing you know it won’t be Adam and Eve, it will be Adam and Eve and Steve! Or even worse, just Adam!

  20. lesbian women r cool they likie eat each other out an i get off watching dat kine sex, an i can jerk off with them an they no even care if my dick stay amall or not coz they no like men so i just jerk off an rub my cum all over them

  21. But we’ve had eight years to digest the concept. That’s why it’s not such a big deal now.

    I recall a Babylon 5 episode portraying a gay marriage as *no big thing*, and that was way longer ago than eight years. IIRC, Franklin and Marcus were traveling to Mars to help out the resistance, and their cover ID was as a married couple. In reflection, that would have made it an interracial, interfaith, gay marriage. A trifecta, if you will.

    Still, fifteen years is like lightning for social change to go from unthinkable to inevitable.

  22. After reading some of these thread comments, it occurrs to me to wonder why there are so few libertarian lesbians.

    Specifically, I’d like to hear from Mike Paahana on that question.

  23. Yeah, but that was science fiction. I remember a Star Trek episode that showed an alien with more than one wife. But if you go to San Fransisco and start lobbying for legalized polygamy, the gays will stone you.

  24. Yeah, but that was science fiction. I remember a Star Trek episode…

    Yeah, but that was *Star Trek*. This is the same genre that holds both Battlestar Galactica and Buck Rogers. Saying something is sci-fi is like calling what you’re eating “dinner food”. Could be anything; doesn’t really narrow it down so much.

    Star Trek went out of its way to make *a big deal* out of its social awareness/activism. In the Bab 5 episode I mentioned, nobody mentioned or cared that they were married, and it didn’t come up again after they received their cover identities. If gay marriage was so right out, more people would have made a stink about the episode, which also it must be mentioned, was a gay marriage between two *humans*; that’s a far cry from some hypothetical alien having more than one wife.

  25. it will be Adam and Eve and Steve!

    Ew gross…

    it will be Adam and Eve and Steve Stephanie!

    Better..

    it will be Adam Alice and Eve and Steve Stephanie!

    Now we can start making the movie.

  26. Eight years ago no one had heard of gay marriage. It was a new shocking concept. It was completely off the radar screen. Yet we were told by our moral superiors that we had to adopt that belief without stopping to think about it. If we didn’t immediately grant marriage licenses to homosexuals then we were evil reactionary bigots who deserved to die.

    So of course there was a backlash! The progressives brought it on themselves.

    I think there have been civil unions in some states for same-sex couples, with all or some of the same state level benefits afforded to straight marriages, since well before 2000. But they didn’t call it “marriage” anywhere.

    Aside from its symbolic importance to some, the word “marriage” is probably necessary (under current federal law) to get the federal benefits like joint income tax filing and easier naturalization for a foreign partner. But with the “Defense of Marriage” Act a same-sex couple can’t get those benefits, regardless of what their state calls their union. If and when the act is repealed, the official state terms might matter again. Or they might change the semantics of federal law.

    Ultimately, the movement for allowing gay marriage (or whatever they end up calling it) is a push for equal legal treatment. So how should they have gone about advocating it without provoking a “backlash”? Their were inevitably going to be some people who prefered the existing unequal legal treatment; as well as those who hadn’t really thought about it but were vaguely uneasy about hearing the word “gay” next to the word “marriage”.

  27. as well as those who hadn’t really thought about it but were vaguely uneasy about hearing the word “gay” next to the word “marriage”.

    Happy marriages can be disturbing, I’ll grant. Especially if the two people that are married are giant pricks.

  28. The terminology matters, at least to some people. In Hawaii, the constitutional amendment to make state-recognized marriage strictly between a man and a woman passed 70/30, despite this being a deep blue state. But we had Republicans proposing civil-unionish arrangements. The trick is to present civil unions as a matter of fairness and legal equality for all without running afoul of those who take (carefully selected parts) of Leviticus seriously — and never, never say “marriage”. Do that and you got a shot at even the reddest states.

  29. Someone in CA correct me if I’m reading this wrong but it seems that you can amend the California constitution with a simple majority vote. Am I reading this right? Does this help explain why the state is so irrational?

    Yes, the CA constitution can be amended by initiative. As for irrational, that’s a chicken-egg thing for me. Are we so screwed up because of all the crazy laws we’ve passed or arethe laws crazy because we’re so screwed up?

  30. But we’ve had eight years to digest the concept. That’s why it’s not such a big deal now.

    That’s one of the reasons we tend to worry more about people’s rights than your backlash. Backlashes go away. It’s part of how progress works.

  31. only, thanks for the response. I must respond that irrationality is a given. What keeps a constitution in check is that it is difficult to amend it every time the public gets a demented whim. If the voters of CA can amend their constitution by a single majority vote, you have a recipe for, well, for California.

  32. LMNOP, are you arguing that most people were in favor of gay marriage in 1996 just because Babylon 5 had a throw-away laugh line in one episode?

    BG, you say that gay marriage proponents only wanted “equal legal treatment”. As a single male I am not getting equal legal treatment. To get the same tax breaks as married gays, I need to find a sexual partner willing to enter into a contract of cohabitation. I don’t have a family, so why can’t I put my best friend down to collect on my social security if I die? Where’s my equal treatment?

  33. Gosh no, Brandybuck. You said it was *unthinkable* before eight years ago. Unthinkable is a long way away from majority support, wouldn’t you say?

    If it is portrayed in a highly-rated and highly -watched mainstream TV show prior to eight years ago as *no big thing*, and without subsequent comment, I’d say the *unthinkable* label is a tad oversold. That’s all.

  34. PS, interestingly it wasn’t portrayed as a laugh line; neither character reacted with indignation, nor was there any *witty* dialogue to spice it up. It was just…there.

  35. P.S. Go watch it again. I saw two pairs of eyes roll when they saw their fake IDs. And you are misinterpreting my use of “unthinkable”. Were there any politiciansat the time thinking about this? Would any politician dare tell any group of voters that he was in favor of it? Politically, it was unthinkable. Not “unthinkable” as in “physically impossible to arrange synapses in such a way as to conceive of the idea”, but “unthinkable” as in “no politican who advocated it would last two days on the campaign trail”.

  36. It’s been a while since I’ve seen it…several years in fact. My apologies if I misremembered it. Although, such a reaction could be read merely as to their relative uncommonality, rather than their social acceptability.

    And, I’d say that local politicians depending on where they were situated could air that opinion without committing electoral suicide, though you are right that nat’l level politicians couldn’t do so until very recently.

    For the most part I basically agree with you BTW. Nit-picking, is all. It is astonishing how quickly the cause for gay-rights equality has come in just the past two decades, and most the largest leaps were in the last four years or so.

  37. the vast majority of americans has not seen babylon 5

  38. If it fails, that won’t change the fact that a few judges overturned a duly enacted law for phantom “constitutional” reasons.

    Rule of law not men!

  39. Equal Protection is not a phantom. It is a foundational principle of our republic.

  40. the vast majority of americans has not seen babylon 5

    True. I never claimed they did. But those that did were an unremarkable cross-section of the population, perhaps skewed slightly towards literate middle class.

  41. Government regulating marriage was always a timebomb waiting to happen.

    It should be between people and the religious institution of their choice.

    Instead, we get this red herring issue to fight over while the country decays. Brilliant!

  42. BG, you say that gay marriage proponents only wanted “equal legal treatment”. As a single male I am not getting equal legal treatment. To get the same tax breaks as married gays, I need to find a sexual partner willing to enter into a contract of cohabitation. I don’t have a family, so why can’t I put my best friend down to collect on my social security if I die? Where’s my equal treatment?

    Interesting point. Some commenters have suggested that joint filing, and other government benefits of marriage should be eliminated. So with the elimination of joint filing, we could lower tax rates across the board and have everyone file single, without a revenue decrease. I have some sympathy for that argument. However, I do think its desireable to retain the naturalization benefit for marriages/civil unions/etc; and to make it equally available to gay and straight couples.

    Still, having equal legal rights for same-sex couples would make things more fair overall. Its true that to get the tax benefits aforded to married couples, you have to “find a sexual partner willing to enter into a contract of cohabitation”. But if you are straight, you don’t have to go against your own sexual preference to do so.

  43. joe: Equal Protection is not a phantom. It is a foundational principle of our republic.

    Of course everyone did have equal protection. They had equal rules for who they could marry. I don’t see how that is even disputable. One man could marry a woman the same as the next man could. Equal. People choose not to marry for all sorts of reasons. Being gay is one, I suppose.

  44. Sorry, but Brandybuck speaks a bit of nonsense. Gay marriage didn’t burst on the scene as a new concept just 8 years ago. I well remember reading the article in Life magazine, complete with photo, of gay marriages being performed. It had a photo of Rev. Troy Perry of UFMCC who conducted that marriage. That was in 1969. I know that Rev. Bob Sirico, before going on to be a right-wing Catholic, also had performed gay marriages more than three decades ago. A United Methodist Chruch in North Carolina did the same in 1990 and a Quaker meeting had a same sex marriage in 1987. Churches have been conducting same-sex marriages for decades. As usual the government is playing catch-up with social trends not leading them — as the paranoid Right tends to believe.

    There certainly is a history of same sex marriage, in one form or another, for thousands of years. PreChristian society was more tolerant

    Things haven’t quite changed in 8 years but more like 30 years.

    I also doubt that gays would be inclined to stone anyone teaching polygamy. Most would yawn. Certainly I knew of one such plural marraige. Hell, the whole town knew about it since they appeared on television. It was one man with two women. I was friends with the one woman. The secon woman was the porn star Nina Hartley and they lived in the Bay Area and were well known in the City. No one even reached for a stone.

  45. Eight Note,

    Having the opportunity to enter into a genuine physical, spiritual, emotional, social, and legal union with the love of your life is not the same thing as having the opportunity to enter into a sham marriage.

    If Catholics and Jews were both allowed to attend Catholic mass, but no Jewish services, do they have equal protection?

  46. And before you say “I have the right to marry my soul mate?” No, you don’t. You have the right to try. Not happiness, but the pursuit of happiness.

    And now, in Massachusetts and California, gay people do, too.

  47. joe: Having the opportunity to enter into a genuine physical, spiritual, emotional, social, and legal union with the love of your life is not the same thing as having the opportunity to enter into a sham marriage.

    I don’t know what a “sham marriage” is. Is that a legal category?

    Also, there is no absolute right “to enter into a genuine physical, spiritual, emotional, social, and legal union with the love of your life.” You can’t if “the love of your life” is a close relative or if “the love of your life” is currently married to another individual for example. Also, what does “the love of your life” mean in a legal sense? You are making vague, emotion-based, appeals to the gut. This website is called “reason” dammit.

    You simply have to come up with a different argument than equal protection. Everyone has equal rights to enter into a “sham marriage” with any unmarried, non-close relative, opposite sex consenting adult of their choice. Or not.

  48. You simply have to come up with a different argument than equal protection. Everyone has equal rights to enter into a “sham marriage” with any unmarried, non-close relative, opposite sex consenting adult of their choice. Or not.

    Suppose a state passed a law holding that no marriage between adults of the same hair color may be married, or have their marriage recognized, in that state. Would you consider that a violation of equal protection? Or how about past laws that prohibited individuals of different races from marrying?

    Or how about this: Would it violate equal protection if, for a state civil service exam, all candidates were required by law to write with only their right hand? Left-handed and right-handed candidates are equally allowed to take the test, as long as they fill in the scantron with their right hands.

    Maybe you don’t think so. If one construes “equal protection” very narrowly, it is possible for a state to have such laws on the books while technically not violating this principle (though one could still hold that such laws are unjust and irrational, but not unconstitutional). I would argue, however, that it is desireable (not sure whether it is constitutionally required) for public policy to adhere to a broader principle of equal rights. When the government creates a program or legal status, the criteria for benefiting that program or legal status should be based on a legitimate government purpose; and nobody should be excluded from benefiting on an equal basis for any other reason.

    The legal status of “marriage” or “civil union” or whatever putatively exists to make benefits available of which many people in romantic relationships would likely want to avail themselves (examples: easier naturalization of a foreign spouse, and not having to fill seperate out paperwork for inheritence, property arrangements, medical visitation, etc.). Because this is putitively romantic in nature, adulterous behavior on the part of one spouse can affect the distribution of assets in a divorce case.

    So we have this legal situation which benefits people in long-term romantic relationships (if they want). But same-sex relationships are excluded, to the detriment of some people whose preference is such relationships. The question I ask is “Is providing benefits to one type, but not the pther type, of relationship reasonably related to a legitimate government purpose?”. My answer is “No”, and therefore I oppose such a discrepentcy.

  49. You are making vague, emotion-based, appeals to the gut. This website is called “reason” dammit.

    I’m not sure if we are still playing that drinking game, or if this qualifies. But I’ll have a drink just in case.

    By the way “pther” should be “other” at the end of my last post.

  50. I hate that drinking game. By calling themselves “reason” they invite retorts. They have no standing to complain. I should go by the pseudonym “Super-Genius” and play my own drinking game when anyone makes a sarcastic comment about it.

  51. BG: Suppose a state passed a law holding that no marriage between adults of the same hair color may be married, or have their marriage recognized, in that state. Would you consider that a violation of equal protection? Or how about past laws that prohibited individuals of different races from marrying?

    Hair color and skin color differences are trivial and superficial. Sex differences are non-trivial. I personally would not go about arguing equal protection in hair or skin color. I would go another route.

    The question I ask is “Is providing benefits to one type, but not the other type, of relationship reasonably related to a legitimate government purpose?”.

    That is a good question, but not directly related to equal protection per se. That is a good question to ask about any law. I would ask it about hair color marriages.

    The question I ask is “Is providing benefits to one type, but not the pther type, of relationship reasonably related to a legitimate government purpose?”. My answer is “No”, and therefore I oppose such a discrepentcy.

    Your answer is “no.” My answer is “yes.” I think your answer is unreasonable. Can you think of any ways a marriage between two people of the same hair color is different from a marriage of two people of the same sex? I think it is on you to demonstrate that the differences between same-sex marriage and opposite-sex marriages are trivial, superficial, and why the state should reasonably be required to pretend they are the same.

    So we have this legal situation which benefits people in long-term romantic relationships (if they want). But same-sex relationships are excluded, to the detriment of some people whose preference is such relationships.

    The logical extention of your reasoning is that laws with same-sex marriage are still to the detriment of some people whose preference is no such long-term relationships. Single people are not being equally protected. I don’t think that is a problem, but it is a logical snag in your reasoning.

  52. Your answer is “no.” My answer is “yes.” I think your answer is unreasonable. Can you think of any ways a marriage between two people of the same hair color is different from a marriage of two people of the same sex?

    The only thing I could think of is the fact that the former can generally reproduce while the latter can not. I answered this argument in the “They Blamme Gay Marriage” thread, and I’ll repost my answer here:

    “The canard: “Nearly all heterosexual marriages produce children, which benefits society.”, or some version of it, gets thrown around a lot.

    1 – It must be asked: Doesn’t reproduction only benefit society up to a certain point? In a country (and a world) where overpopulation looms as a potential problem on the horizon; don’t we need to re-examine the idea that we should provide public rewards for producing offspring? After all, people are already inclined to engage to do so often enough, and too many offspring could be problematic. And if it is desirable to have a greater number of people in the country, (if not on the planet), couldn’t that be largely taken care of by a more open immigration policy?

    2 – Lets say it is desirable to reward increasing the population, and that is the reason for extending legal benefits to straight married couples. Why extend those benefits to infertile couples, or those that chose not to reproduce? And why not allow same-sex couples those benefits if they intend to adopt a child from a third-world country, or an overburdened state foster care system? These acts don’t increase the number of people in the world. But the former increases the number of people in the country, and the latter reduces the obligations of the state. Also these acts of adoption are generally recognized laudable when performed by married straight couples. So why not allow gay couples to marry – and receive the same legal treatment for performing the same actions?

    3 – If the reason for extending benefits to straight couples is not about bearing or raising children, but instead it is some other reason, why not allow gay couples to have access to the same benefits? As a matter of equal legal rights, they should be allowed to marry and be treated the same.”

    The logical extention of your reasoning is that laws with same-sex marriage are still to the detriment of some people whose preference is no such long-term relationships. Single people are not being equally protected. I don’t think that is a problem, but it is a logical snag in your reasoning.

    See my above comment regarding tax benefits and other benefits (12:13, July 20). As for the naturalization benefit; if you don’t have a long term romantic parter from a foreign country, then you can hardly complain that this non-existent person is not being granted the opportunity to obtain a quick green card.

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