Gay Marriage

Gay Marriage Opponents Think Most Americans Dislike Equality As Much As They Do

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jwilsson/Flickr

Opponents of marriage equality may think they have God on their side, but it seems what they've really got working for them is delusion. A new survey from the Public Religion Research Institute finds that despite their now-minority status, most U.S. opponents of same-sex marriage think that the bulk of their fellow Americans stand with them.

These days, only 41 percent of Americans oppose same-sex marriage. Yet two-thirds of this vocal minority erroneously believe that most Americans oppose same-sex marriage. And only 20 percent realize that the majority of Americans now support it.

Wait—aren't opponents of marriage equality (and gay rights in general) always crowing about how they're being oppressed? Are religious conservatives a beleaguered minority (war on Christmas, SB 1062, etc.) or the stalwart voice of a silent majority? I guess it depends on which persona is politically convenient at the time. 

Of course, public opinion in general tends to skew inaccurate. Heck, one in ten Americans think HTML is a sexually-transmitted disease. And 35 percent think that at least a quarter of people are homosexual. Interestingly, even same-sex marriage supporters seem to perceive less support for it than actually exists. Only 34 percent of Americans overall said that the majority of their peers support gay marriage.

As Wonkblog's Christopher Ingraham notes, "this is at least partly a function of how rapidly public opinion has shifted. Ten years ago, only 32 percent of Americans supported same-sex marriage, compared to 53 percent in favor today—a 21-point shift." But there's also probably some epistemic closure at work. Though Ingraham cites it as the prerogative of religious conservatives and Mitt Romney 2012 supporters, epistemic closure (or "confirmation bias," or the "false consensus effect," or whatever you want to call it) infects people of all ideological stripes.

In the case of same-sex marriage, however, religious folks were especially likely to fall victim. Regular churchgoers tended to overestimate fellow congregants' opposition to marriage equality by 20 percentage points or more. About 59 percent of white mainline Protestants said most of their fellow churchgoers oppose gays marrying, though a majority (57 percent) actually support it. And nearly three-quarters of Catholics think most people at their church oppose marriage equality, while about half are actually in favor.

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  1. Do libertarians really want to play the game of “because everyone disagrees with you, you are wrong”? Really? I don’t think you will like what progs do with that argument next. Just saying.

    1. I don’t think the point is “everyone disagrees, so therefore gay marriage opponents are wrong,” but “more people disagree with gay marriage opponents than they realize.”

      1. But that fact is only meaningful if it somehow implies they are wrong. Otherwise, so what?

        1. I think you’re right in one way, John.

          Even if marriage equality were only popular among swing voters in swing states (a clear minority), it would still be stupid of libertarians to go big against gay marriage.

          1. I mean, really, if we really want to be taken seriously by elected policy makers, shouldn’t we be focusing exclusively on swing voters in swing states?

            When the percentage of the vote libertarians get is more or less consistently higher than the margin of victory, that’s when we start getting some serious influence.

            Until then, it isn’t really about elections. It’s about spreading the libertarian gospel–to the swing voters.

            1. And the perpetual wafflers!

              1. Great, now I’m hungry for a perpetual waffle.

          2. Marriage equality is most popular amongst swinger voters in swinger States.

        2. But that fact is only meaningful if it somehow implies they are wrong.

          If we’re talking about a society defining its institutions, are the numbers important?

          1. If Reason were interested in society defining institutions, sure. But they are not. If they were they would want legislatures to do this. Instead, they are happy to see top men judges do it for them.

            Reason doesn’t want society changing this institution. They want this change enforced with a gun from the top.

            1. Do you have evidence for that, or do you just read minds? Seems to me they are mostly just reporting on what is happening. It also occurs to me that Reason is a collection of distinct writers with varying views on many subjects. I have never gotten the impression that any reason writers favor court action over legislative recognition of gay marriage.

              1. What I love about John is that he is one of the more explicitly partisan commenters here and yet regularly tries to call out the Reason writers as being blindly biased, and yes, often it is based on some implication or mind reading.

                1. Either say something interesting or stop wasting everyone’s time. And here is a hint “you are just partisan” isn’t interesting or relevant to much of anything.

                  1. Is ‘something interesting’ mind reading the writers here John?

                2. I don’t know about that. John seems pretty clear on where his partisan compass points. Maybe he expects the same of Reason.

                  Gay marriage opponents could be wrong. Then we have things like the couple suing the bakery and the failed law in AZ. Force is force, no matter which side is behind it.

                  1. Force is force, no matter which side is behind it.

                    Exactly. Your average SoCon doesn’t shrink from advocating government force to advance their agenda any less that the average Prog.

                    Anyway, what’s wrong with framing a discussion of principles in a way that may help broaden the interest in those principles? I really don’t see anyone complaining when Reason uses food carts or Uber rather than multimillionaires to discuss their principles.

                3. The second step is when you stop caring, Bo.

            2. That is the legitimate purpose of the gun. To protect the rights of the citizen.

              Freedom of association.

              Why would you need to legislate a right that you already have?

              You need to get rid of law that wrongly prevents you from exercising your rights. That IS the purpose of the courts…to limit the legislature.

            3. If Reason were interested in society defining institutions, sure. But they are not. If they were they would want legislatures to do this. Instead, they are happy to see top men judges do it for them.

              Reason doesn’t want society changing this institution. They want this change enforced with a gun from the top.

              Emphasis added.

              If a legislature changes it, how is it not enforced via gun?

              1. This should not be construed as agreement nor disagreement in any prior statement, but this…

                If a legislature changes it, how is it not enforced via gun?

                Really?

                Ummm… cause all laws are enforced by guns?

        3. It is meaningful because it is worth correcting misconceptions.

          1. Yeah. This isn’t about “how many people are in favor of/opposed to gay marriage,” but “do you even know how many other people are on your same side of the issue?”

        4. “But that fact is only meaningful if it somehow implies they are wrong. Otherwise, so what?”

          It could speak to the ‘every right thinking American agrees with us’ tendency that so many statists embrace.

          1. It could speak to the ‘every right thinking American agrees with us’ tendency that so many statists embrace.

            Sure. And embracing that tendency yourself is a good idea why? You being a leftist probably think it is a good idea. But we already knew that.

            1. You always get wonderfully confused when you are angry at someone for disagreeing with me.

              The tendency is being ascribed to the opponents of SSM John, as a bad thing.

        5. But that fact is only meaningful if it somehow implies they are wrong.

          They are wrong. About how many people agree with them. There has been a huge shift in public opinion on this recently, so it is meaningful to the politics of the issue at least.

      2. And so what? We’re coming to the tipping point on gay marriage. Huzzah for that, but people can not support gay marriage all they want. America is a free country after all.

        For gay marriage to come to fruition not all Americans need to be in agreement.

      3. “”more people disagree with gay marriage opponents than they realize.””

        Wow. People (who tend to live and work around people with similar beliefs) think that their beliefs are the majority opinion?

        Well fucking stop the presses.

        Is there any broad political belief where this isn’t the case?

    2. I prefer “the majority is always wrong”.

      Its probably not universally true, but close enough to be a good guide.

    3. Fuck you John. You probably jack-off the pictures of Saudi Arabia and Iran all day long.

    4. there is no such thing as SSM. marraige is a long standing human ritual to celebrate procreation. big deal that gheys don’t meet that description. i don’t cry that i don’t get a quinceanera party…
      on the other hand, given the trans* all the contract rights vis a vis the state that normal people have.

  2. Have you checked the figures for those who support “nondiscrimination” laws forcing private businesses to hire/serve gay people? The support for such laws is *higher* than the support for state-recognized SSM.

    So be cautious about arguing “the majority is on our side.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..story.html

    1. But Reason and at least a few of its readers, Tonio to name one, are totally fine with such laws. Reason will pretend otherwise. But the reality is they know gay marriage is going to result in that and it doesn’t in any way effect their support. No one at Reason is saying “gay marriage only if everyone agrees not to have those laws”. They are just saying “gay marriage now and damn, its a real shame about those laws”.

      Tonio in contrast supports the laws no matter what and is in that sense more honest than Reason.

      1. Doesn’t the fact that anti-discrimination laws have more support than gay marriage indicate that the latter is not causing the former?

        1. No one said it did. The point is that anti-discrimination laws exist and are not going away. So gay marriage is going to cause the CRA to apply to gays. Indeed, that is the whole reason why the left latched onto gay marriage. When the idea was originally proposed, the left hated the idea and saw it as an effort to impose middle class values on the gay culture. It was only after they realized that they could use it as a way to criminalize their opponents did the left latch onto the issue.

          1. The CRA cannot apply to gays without rewriting the law. It explicitly refers to “race, color, religion, or national origin.” States passing gay marriage doesn’t somehow change federal law.

            1. The CRA cannot apply to gays without rewriting the law.

              Sure it can. You just have to rewrite the 14th Amendment. If gays are a protected class under the 14th Amendment, then court mandated public accommodation follows quite easily.

              1. Er, and then that would not be under the CRA, right?

              2. The 14th amendment applying to gays would effect policies of state and local governments. It wouldn’t directly mean public accommodation laws (not that those couldn’t get passed by Congress). The interstate commerce clause was the justification behind Title II of the CRA, not the Fourteenth Amendment.

                1. You would think a lawyer like John would have known this.

                  1. Bo,

                    You are a half wit who knows just enough to be dangerous about the law. You don’t even make intelligent enough points to warrant response. In fact, your points are so stupid, it is hard to even make an intelligent response to them.

                    1. “You are a half wit who knows just enough to be dangerous about the law. ”

                      While you, it seems, do not know even enough to be dangerous, as you have displayed here.

                2. Calidissident,

                  Marital status is a protected class. Once gays have government marriage, every employer who gives spousal benefits must treat gay marriage equally. Also, any business that serves straights, like bakeries and such, must serve gay couples.

                  1. “Marital status is a protected class.”

                    Under the CRA?

                  2. John,

                    None of those things are true under the CRA. There are probably other laws that make the marriage thing true. I don’t know whether the ones applying to private companies are state or federal laws. The thing regarding bakers is just not true. States and/or the feds would have to pass a law (as some states have done) protecting sexual orientation under anti-discrimination laws. Those aren’t automatically added to Title II cause of gay marriage.

            2. “The CRA cannot apply to gays without rewriting the law. It explicitly refers to “race, color, religion, or national origin.” States passing gay marriage doesn’t somehow change federal law.”

              Is there a reason you left sex out of that description of the CRA?

              1. Is it under Title II? I know the others are, and I checked Wiki just to see if there were any I was leaving out. Those were the only ones listed. Then again, it is Wiki. Regardless, I know sexual orientation is not one of those things.

          2. “So gay marriage is going to cause the CRA to apply to gays.”

            How so? You have to amend these laws to add sexual orientation to them.

          3. I don’t give a fuck why the left latched onto gay marriage. The left also favors pot legalization and loosened immigration for stupid reasons. That’s not a reason for anyone to oppose those things unless you are just a partisan team hack.

            The anti discrimination laws are not going away, with or without gay marriage. For that matter, gay marriage is not going away either. So that battle is lost and we need to focus on convincing people that the public accommodation laws are a problem. Unfortunately, as Eddie’s link illustrates, that seems to be even more of a losing battle than that against ga marriage.

            1. I don’t give a fuck why the left latched onto gay marriage

              I am sure you don’t Zeb. That is because you won’t give a fuck when the left uses it to end religious freedom and freedom of association. Hell, they will be doing it to your cultural enemies, so why should you care?

              Either you are willing to stand up to defend the rights of people you don’t like or you really are just as bad as the rest. And pretty much no one on here or at Reason gives a flying fuck about anyone they don’t like’s rights.

              Sorry if that bothers you for me to point that out. But tough shit. I am going to continue to point it out.

              So that battle is lost and we need to focus on convincing people that the public accommodation laws are a problem.

              Oh sure. We can have religious freedom right after we convince the country to abandon the CRA altogether. But until we can do that, we won’t defend anyone we don’t like’s rights.

              1. See, now it is not just me and the Reason author who are secretly leftist, but Zeb too.

                Interestingly for John anyone who criticizes SoCons seems to be a secret leftist.

                1. I havent seen socons mentioned in this thread until now, when you brought them up.

                  You have some weird obsession.

                  There are plenty of opponents of gay marriage other than socons.

                  1. Yes robc, associating social conservatives with opposition to same-sex marriage is wildly imprecise.

                    I mean, really? I think it is you with the socon obsession (to go with your ‘sympathies’).

                    1. Once again you use a word I never used.

                      Liar.

                    2. robc, you know you said you had sympathies with socon lifestyles. Why run from it? Not only did you say it, you have on other occasions conceded it and went on to clarify it was lifestyles you were talking about.

                    3. Im saying I never used the word “sympathies”.

                    4. So you concede you expressed sympathy for socon lifestyles but, what, protest you did not use the word ‘sympathies?’ What, did you say ‘sympathy?’ Pretty silly.

                    5. Im pretty sure I didnt use a word with that root at all.

                      That has been my point for months now. You keep using a word I didnt use. And quoting it even.

                    6. It was that word or a root of it.

              2. That is because you won’t give a fuck when the left uses it to end religious freedom and freedom of association.

                Wrong. Where the fuck would you ever get that idea? How would my changing my mind about gay marriage affect any of this? I am for legal recognition of gay marriage and opposed to public accommodation laws and that is not contradictory in any way. Why is that so fucking hard to understand?

                If I were out there campaigning for any candidate who supports gay marriage you might have a point, but I don’t. I have my views and I’m not going to let them be determined by some stupid game of political strategy.

              3. John, the CRA already limits religious freedom. It’s not legal to discriminate against someone in matters of public accommodation on the basis of religion.

                1. John, the CRA already limits religious freedom. It’s not legal to discriminate against someone in matters of public accommodation on the basis of religion.

                  For sure. And when we make gays a protected class, it will no be illegal for anyone to object to homosexuality. That is the whole point.

                  1. it will no be illegal for anyone to object to homosexuality

                    Yeah, if you assume that the only way to object to something is to refuse to participate in commerce with certain people. I don’t like people being forced to do that more than anyone else, but you are being a bit hyperbolic. It’s not illegal to be racist or sexist. I’d rather it happen without coercion, but I hope that some day homophobia will be just as socially unacceptable.

                  2. My point is that you seem to be implying that this is the first (or perhaps final?) blow to religious freedom and freedom of association in this country and seem to be ignoring all the other ways in which those things are already limited. Not that I agree with anti-discrimination laws, but the ones regarding gays are not some brand new sort of legislation, which is the point I was making.

              4. Ending slavery was wrong because it eventually led to public accommodation anti-discrimination laws that apply to private parties.

                I realize that the moral case for ending slavery is much stronger, but I think that the reasoning is about the same. You shouldn’t support a thing because some other people might make more bad laws because of it.

                1. THIS

                  And the same logic can be applied to paleo opposition to immigration, btw.

              5. Either you are willing to stand up to defend the rights of people you don’t like

                …Like homosexuals?

        2. As far as John is considered, people like me (in favor of legally recognized same-sex marriage, against laws forcing private companies to do business with someone they don’t want to do business with) don’t exist. As far as John is considered, ‘dem icky queers just ain’t even people.

      2. “Reason will pretend otherwise.”

        By repeatedly saying they do not support them? John, the Mind-Reader, ladies and gentlemen!

        1. Don’t you understand, Bo Cara Esq, supporting the gays means you have gone to the “dark-side”, and can never be trusted. The gays do all kinds of horrible things, like control the media, subvert the Christian order, and drink the blood of Christian children at their Passover Seders.

      3. No one at Reason is saying “gay marriage only if everyone agrees not to have those laws”. They are just saying “gay marriage now and damn, its a real shame about those laws”.

        Part of the problem is how woefully unintegrated these things actually are. States that have never had any element of same-sex marriage might still have these antidiscrimination laws on the books.

        1. I do not think any state has some forgotten antidiscrimination law that covers sexual orientation laying around somewhere. Those that do had to pretty consciously add that to the protected class list.

          1. I didn’t say they were forgotten or lying around. I said they were passed sans gay marriage. IL was such a state until recently. New Mexico is another.

            1. I see, I thought you were saying that anti-discrimination statutes that did not enumerate sexual orientation as a protected class would be interpreted to do so. As far as I know, that has not happened.

          2. really, bo? States have all sorts of prohibitions against certain types of sexual activity with no differentiation as to who is engaged in them. There are old laws that would impact the traditional marriage as much as SSM.

        2. What do you mean Nikki? Every state and the Feds have public accommodation laws with regards to race.

          1. I mean there are states, such as NM and IL, that banned discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation without making any moves toward gay marriage. So all the public accommodation bullshit was already a problem, regardless of whether same-sex marriages were being recognized by the state.

            1. That is true. But using the 14th Amendment to get courts rather than legislatures recognize gay marriage made it an issue in every state. That is the problem.

              If gay marriage had been done by legislature, which the caveat that people have a right to object, I would support it.

              My beef is not with gay marriage. My beef is with the courts taking the power to define marriage away from the legislatures and by extension the voters and declaring marriage to a same sex partner a “right”.

              1. John, the 14th Amendment would not cause private actors to have to bake cakes for gay people. You should know this.

      4. But Reason and at least a few of its readers, Tonio to name one, are totally fine with such laws.

        Then Tonio is wrong. And I defy you to show me where ANY reason writer supports protected classes.

        1. Francis, I strongly urge you to take anything John says about me with a grain of salt. He has a long history of mischaracterizing my statements on a variety of topics, and has resisted all my calls to produce actual quotes of things I’ve said. That’s why I stopped responding to him several months ago.

          If you want to debate me, fine, please do so. But do so based on what I have actually written here, not on hearsay.

          1. If I am wrong, just say so. I don’t need a quote. You are here. All you have to do is say “I object to including gays as a protected class under the CRA”.

            Say that and I will withdraw my statement.

            You are even more mendacious than Bo. No where in your post do you say you don’t support this. You only say “John can’t produce a quote where I support this” as if your being here and refusal to repudiate the position isn’t proof enough.

            Why do you have to be such a dishonest piece of shit? No one here will hold your position against you. They might disagree with you. But they are not going to hold it against you.

            But you are so dishonest, you can’t even admit that is what it is.

            I will continue to call you out for holding this position. If you don’t like that, just post a simple response beneath my post saying

            “No John, homosexuality should not be a protected class under the CRA or any state version of it and people should be free to refuse service to homosexuals if they choose to”.

            Do that and I will never again say you think otherwise.

            Don’t do that and I will continue to tell people your actual position and call you out for being the mendacious troll you are.

            1. Wow, John, you would have made a fantastic Joe McCarthy. “Say you are not a communist or I will conclude you are!”

              1. Yes Bo. it is called debate. When I says “do you agree with this?” and you refuse to answer it, that means you agree. Otherwise, you would just say no.

                Only someone as mendacious as you, would fail to understand that. And Tonio will never state his position because he doesn’t want to admit that is what he thinks. Why? Who knows.

                1. John, concluding something about someone because of what they have NOT said is not debate, it is McCarthyism and poor reasoning.

                  1. Bo – asking someone directly and openly “is this what you meant” is called open and honest debate. Not “McCarthyism” (which BTW you prove once again your lack of knowledge and understanding by using such a tired, exaggerated historical period, as “McCarthyism” and think it’s somehow insulting).

          2. Fair enough Tonio.

            It was more an if:then statement without judgement.

            If Tonio said that, then he’s wrong. Wasn’t necessarily claiming you did.

            1. And I realize that, Cisco. The point was about my being misquoted, and a request to others to be aware of what was happening.

          3. You accused me of hypocrisy for going thru with a licensed marriage next month.

            Hmmm…chrome or my dictionary on this machine does not recognize “hypocracy” as an alternative spelling.

            1. Not sure what you’re getting at, robc. But, yes, IIRC I did throw out the term hypocrisy (perhaps misspelled) in that discussion. And I stand by that.

              As a follow-on I’ve been posting here for a very long time, basically since I followed Gillespie over from suck dot com. I cannot recall everything I’ve ever posted on here, so I feel it fair to put the burden of proof on the person making the claim.

              1. And yet you dont consider it hypocrisy for me to drive on government roads.

                You said that in the same thread.

    2. “So be cautious about arguing “the majority is on our side.”

      Do you really think most of the writers here are against nondiscrimination laws as a practical matter?

      They may give lip service to being uncomfortable with them, but are they going to go to the mat to do anything to really change them? Judging from the apathetic to angry articles on the Arizona legislation, I do not think so.

      1. If Arizona had anti-discrimination laws that the AZ law was trying to repeal, you might have a point.

      2. Yeah, it’s all a big conspiracy to get invited to cocktail parties, or something.

        Look, you don’t become a libertarian because you want to be a big mover in practical politics. How would you suggest that reason writers “go to the mat” for this issue? They are writers, so they write shit about things.

        1. And when they write on this issue they seem rather unhappy and embarrassed about having to take that side. Their support for free association and religious freedom is grudging and sneering. While, in contrast, they are rather enthusiastically supportive of open borders and marijuana legalization

          1. As we have seen in the past, many of the reason writers arent libertarian, as they make clear once they have moved on.

            I think the long timers are, but not necessarily the others. Its just a gig.

      3. “Do you really think most of the writers here are against nondiscrimination laws as a practical matter?”
        I don’t know about most of the writers here, but I know I am.

  3. What is the point of this article? As the article itself alludes to, there is nothing surprising about supporters of a particular position imagining popular agreement to be greater than what it actually is. Even libertarians are affected by this form of Pollyanna thinking. What, exactly, is the criticism supposed to be — ‘shame on social conservatives for not keeping up-to-date with the latest polling data’?

    I fail to see how this is a relevant or interesting slight on SoCons in the slightest; perhaps in your rush to mock the ignorant troglodytes Ms Brown forgot to include the libertarian angle.

    1. perhaps in your rush to mock the ignorant troglodytes Ms Brown forgot to include the libertarian angle.

      Let me try:
      Libertarians know not very many people agree with libertarians therefore…umm…the science is settled?

    2. Pollyanna thinking? This doesn’t mean what you think it does; the Pollyanna principle is “the tendency for people to remember pleasant items more accurately than unpleasant ones”. It’s a totally different kind of bias.

      Oh, and the point of the article: It is always the right time to mock SoCons, because it is amusing and nourishing for the soul.

      1. According to the Free Online Dictionary, a Pollyanna is defined as ‘A person regarded as being foolishly or blindly optimistic’, which is perfectly in keeping with my usage.

        As far as mockery goes, it’d be nice for it to have an actual target. “Look how stupid these people are for not being polling nerds” is a pretty fucking lame criticism; almost as bad as ROADZ mockery of libertarians or the pathetic insults Tony dishes out on a regular basis.

        1. The smell of troll is strong on that one.

    3. Most libertarians seem to support gay marriage. If you are one of them, and you get into a debate with someone who doesn’t support it and they try to claim that the majority is on their side, you can now rebut that claim. The point of the article is to inform. The snark at the beginning wasn’t necessary, though.

      1. I don’t care about gay marriage enough to argue about it with other people in real life; it has zero bearing on who I support and while I have my own opinion on it (for it, more or less) I can’t be arsed to do anything about it in the real world.

        As far as ‘majority support’ goes, I prefer to argue against the premise that majority support = good when I come across that line of thinking. Sometimes polling trivia can be useful in that argument, but it is hardly necessary.

        1. OK, that’s great for you. Ms. Brown may not have been writing for your sake alone, TIT. 😉

      2. As I only read the first sentence, it was not only unnecessary, but entirely off-putting.

    4. Abortion supporters think they are a large majority too. They’re not even a plurality:

      http://www.gallup.com/poll/1576/Abortion.aspx#1

      1. That is a bit of a misleading description. It would be just as fair to say that abortion opponents are not even a plurality. You can’t say much unless you know how the “legal under some circumstances” breaks down. That could include anything from legal only to save the mother’s life to legal up until 8 months.

        1. “That is a bit of a misleading description.”

          From SIV? Surely not!

        2. Zeb

          You have to scroll down. 45% describe themselves as “pro-choice” while 48% do as “pro-life”. You can parse the rest of it how you like but that is how the poll measures self-identification on the issue.

          1. Were I pro-life I am not sure a bunch of people calling themselves so while supporting abortion being ‘legal under some circumstances’ much of a victory.

          2. Sure. About evenly divided is what I would have guessed anyway.

            Just a comment, not directed at you in particular: I hate how both “pro-choice” and “pro-life” are used. If you’re talking about abortion, just say “abortion”.

            1. That is why I used “abortion supporters” in the first comment. Pro-Life/Choice is the poll language.

  4. I read this as a simple indictment on modern culture in America. Yep, confirmation bias has a place to play here, but the real reason that so many people are wrong about the facts is that too many people are more worried about Entertainment Tonight over politics.

    1. people are more worried about Entertainment Tonight over politics

      Why is this supposed to be a bad thing, again? You and I have about the same impact on politics as on what goes on in ET; why is it suddenly a bad thing among libertarians that people find activities outside of politics more fulfilling than political life?

      1. I agree with your sentiment here. It would be great if the number of things in the political sphere were smaller so we wouldn’t have to care about politics so much.

        But *if* people are going to care about politics, it is good for them to be well informed.

      2. The problem is that many people imaginable that they have a clue about politics but don’t. I think it would be great if more people just didn’t care at all. At this point I wish I didn’t care at all.

    2. “but the real reason that so many people are wrong about the facts is that too many people are more worried about Entertainment Tonight over politics.”

      That’s idiotic.

      The real reason people have these views is that they tend to live among people with similar values. There is a reason why states tend to go red or blue. It’s because the people there tend to have the same views. And other than “Entertainment Tonight” that’s where people tend to get their viewpoints reinforced or challenged.

  5. Christ, yet another piece on the only issue you libertarians care about: billionaires and their tax rates. Tony is absolutely right. You guys have one track minds.

    1. So is he finally admitting that we’re not all about racism?

      I guess that’s an improvement!

      1. Well the tax rates for billionaires is racist, duh.

  6. “I DON’T GIVE A FUCK” not same as “I hate equality”

    1. It’s just that the people who oppose gay marriage–generally speaking, they do give a fuck.

      And no one understands why!

      I certainly don’t.

      Do they imagine gay people can’t have sex if they can’t get married?!

      Somebody who really cares about stopping gay people from getting married, please explain it to me. Why does it matter to you?

      Can you put it into words that’ll make sense to a libertarian?

      1. Most of the people who oppose redefining marriage do not oppose same sex couples having the same legal rights as married couples. They just want it to be called something else.

        Most people who claim that it is only about legal rights will absolutely not accept any compromise on what it’s called. It’s got to be marriage.

        So as I see it it’s not about legal rights.

        It’s about using government force to redefine a word.

        Not very libertarian if you ask me.

        1. The government is redefining the legal meaning of a word.

          You are free to consider same-sex couples as not-married if you prefer.

          1. Yes, you’re free to consider them not-married, so long as you don’t actually act like they aren’t.

            1. Does that not apply to straight marriages today?

              1. Now you’re getting there!

                1. Drop the patronizing act. I am all in favor of ending government-issued marriage licenses. If they do exist, however, the government should not discriminate against gay couples. There is nothing contradictory about those stances.

                  1. If the argument against gay marriage is that government shouldn’t be involved, then the people making that argument should also be in favor of bringing back anti-miscegenation laws.

        2. “It’s about using government force to redefine a word.”

          It is silly to say it is about using ‘government force to redefine a word’ when what is being talked about is ‘government recognized marriage.’

          1. If equivalent legal rights could be given to same sex couples without using the word “marriage,” would you find that to be acceptable?

            If you answer no, then the word is more important than the legal rights.

            All I’m trying to do is keep people honest.

            It is dishonest to claim that it’s all about legal protections when legal protections without the word are unacceptable.

            It is also dishonest to claim that those who oppose redefining a word do so out of hatred, when those very same people support equivalent legal protections as long as you use a different word.

            1. If you answer no, then the word is more important than the legal rights.

              and I would say to the strident gay community, it’s all about the word. I recall Romney, of all people, being agreeable to civil unions.

              From a functional standpoint, what’s the difference? Either is a recognition by the state of your relationship with whatever attendant rights are involved.

              1. I know Romney said something about supporting unions that would give gay couples health care and some other rights (inheritance? maybe?) but it was unclear whether he supported unions that granted fully equivalent rights.

            2. I do not think it is as much about the word as it is the discrimination. Having equivalent but separate water fountains for blacks and whites inherently suggested something inferior with at least one of them, and when you tell gay couple their union can have all the legal rights of marriage but the name is being reserved for straights they likely feel the same way.

              1. and when you tell gay couple their union can have all the legal rights of marriage but the name is being reserved for straights they likely feel the same way.

                So the word is more important than the legal rights. Gotcha.

                1. He didn’t say it was more important.

                2. Did you not read the entire preceding section?

                  Again, if the water fountains were equivalent why would a black person be upset about ‘whites’ and ‘black’ only ones? That is what is going on with why gays are not OK with the ‘legal equivalent of marriage, but we have to call it something different.’

                  1. No one is being forced to use different water fountains. That analogy is dishonest but effective, since is paints anyone who disagrees with you as racist.

                    1. For someone so fond of pointing out when others construct strawmen, you sure are capable of doing it yourself.

                    2. Sarc, maybe you’re right in a sense, but how much has the institution itself changed in western history? Even today you can find many variations of the themes and particular rules of marriage in cultures that haven’t been influenced by the west. Is it just possible that it can change again without causing the end of everything.

                    3. I do not use it to paint anyone as a racist but to identify the analogous point. In both cases you are talking about equivalent or equal legal rights but under different labels.

                    4. for a fair portion of SSM supporters, it’s about the M. There is a section of the population to whom marriage means something very specific. Painting them as bigots when their main hang-up is rhetorical is sophistry.

                      If civil unions were an effective remedy, we would already have them. And a good chunk of the straight community uninterested in the traditional marriage route would likely be on board, too.

                    5. There is a section of the population to whom marriage means something very specific. Painting them as bigots when their main hang-up is rhetorical is sophistry.

                      Exactly.

                    6. sarcasmic, do you not see how that point which you say ‘Exactly’ to can be turned back at you? This conversation began with you accusing the proponents of SSM of using force to achieve a ‘rhetorical’ point. Is the word supposed to be critically important when defending those who insist it not apply to gays but a petty aim for those insisting it be extended to them?

                    7. WOW, you completely missed the point there guy.

                    8. the fallacy fallacy
                      You presumed that because a claim has been poorly argued, or a fallacy has been made, that the claim itself must be wrong.

                      It is entirely possible to make a claim that is false yet argue with logical coherency for that claim, just as is possible to make a claim that is true and justify it with various fallacies and poor arguments.

                      Example: Recognising that Amanda had committed a fallacy in arguing that we should eat healthy food because a nutritionist said it was popular, Alyse said we should therefore eat bacon double cheeseburgers every day.

                    9. wareagle, I have not labeled anyone a bigot for opposing same sex marriage. There may be some who are so motivated, but I imagine most are not.

                      I am only trying to explain to sarcasmic the mindset of how proponents of gay marriage might find civil unions but not the title of marriage to be insulting in some way.

                    10. I am only trying to explain to sarcasmic the mindset of how proponents of gay marriage might find civil unions but not the title of marriage to be insulting in some way.

                      and I believe sarc has stated that a good many proponents are stuck on the M word than on the actual end result. I don’t know that civil unions would be different in any way but the name.

                      Your argument can flipped the other way, you know – the mindset of believers in the traditional definition might be likewise insulted. So is the end game feelings or the actual result?

                    11. In both cases you are talking about equivalent or equal legal rights but under different labels.

                      No you aren’t, aqnd you’re extremely disingenuous for claiming as much.

                      You’re mining the “separate but equal is anything but” mindshare that knows the southern, racist version of separate but equal was known not to be equal at all.

                      Tying that to a modern referendum on anything is a cheap tactic, not intelligent debate.

                    12. Looks like someone needs to read the Brown v. Board of Education opinion.

                    13. No one is being forced to use different water fountains. That analogy is dishonest but effective, since is paints anyone who disagrees with you as racist.

                      OK, try this one: gay people can do whatever they like with their private parts, as long as they don’t call it sex. It’s sex when a man puts his penis in a woman’s backdoor, but if a man does it to another man it isn’t. They still have every right to do it, but they can’t call it sex. Sex is a sacred word.

                  2. Would you have been happy if black people had been declared legally to be white?

          2. 30 years ago, gay meant happy or festive, not homosexual. Gay marriage did not even exist as a term. Yes, marriage is being re-defined. Not everyone is on board with that; doesn’t make them bigoted. From what I’ve seen and heard, a lot of folks opposed to same sex marriage are cool with civil unions, even though from a functional perspective, there is not much difference.

            1. I think in the really important way marriage was redefined a long time ago, from the conservative idea of marriage being about responsible procreation to the current idea of marriage as a contract between equals for self actualization. The idea that it must be reserved for heterosexuals makes sense if the former idea is what marriage is about, but not so much if we have moved to the second. And part of the issue with socons on this is they think that redefinition has not happened prior to any talk of gay marriage, so polls like this are important.

              1. I always figured the reasoning behind marriage was so that a few alpha males wouldn’t get all of the women, thus enraging all of the other men, leading to all kinds of bad outcomes.

            2. If you are arguing that marriage was defined as being between one man and one woman, why are many states now rushing to define marriage as being between one man and one woman? It would seem to be unnecessary.

              1. It was unnecessary until judicial activism on the subject. Same in Canada.

        3. “Most of the people who oppose redefining marriage do not oppose same sex couples having the same legal rights as married couples. They just want it to be called something else.”

          A brief glance at polling indicates that this isn’t necessarily true. Depending on which poll you look at, it’s not clear whether more people oppose SSM but support civil unions or more people oppose all legal recognition. Also, there would need to be changes to laws in order for civil unions to provide exactly the same benefits and protections as marriage.

          “Most people who claim that it is only about legal rights will absolutely not accept any compromise on what it’s called. It’s got to be marriage.

          It’s about using government force to redefine a word.”

          Does that not go both ways? Why are SSM opponents so insistent that their unions (and only their unions) are called “marriage” by the government?

          1. “Does that not go both ways? Why are SSM opponents so insistent that their unions (and only their unions) are called “marriage” by the government?”

            THIS. Any person complaining about gays getting the government into sanctioning their marriages has to apply that same complaint magnified a hundred at the social conservatives on the other side. For literally centuries they set up a large government edifice of reserving benefits for the couplings they approved of as well as criminal sanctions for those they did not.

          2. So the word is indeed more important. Thank you for being honest.

            1. You can be so disingenuous on this issue it’s ridiculous. I was calling you out for the hypocrisy of criticizing gay rights people for something that you’re giving their opponents a pass for. I support ending government-marriage licenses. If they do exist, the government should offer them to straight and gay couples (and polygamists for that matter). I would prefer if these licenses were called something like “civil unions” to avoid the controversy over “marriage.” While having marriage for straights and “civil unions” for gays would be better than no legal recognition for gays IMO, I think the same term should be used for both. Does that clarify my position on this enough for you?

              It’s funny how you call John Red Tony, and yet on this issue, which any impartial observer would say is one of the main issues were John’s partisan thinking comes out, you sound exactly like him.

              1. I was calling you out for the hypocrisy of criticizing gay rights people for something that you’re giving their opponents a pass for switching the burden of proof.

                ftfy

                1. What burden of proof?

              2. Here’s what you misunderstand. I’m not making an argument here. I’m trying to clarify the argument.

                People claim that it’s all about equality under the law and all this emotive crap, but it’s a farce. It’s about defining a word.

                Now you’re trying to switch the burden of proof by demanding an explanation as to why the definition should not be changed.

                All you’re doing is confirming that the legal stuff is just fluff, and what matters more than anything else is how the word is defined.

                1. But sarcasmic, things can be equivalent but when made separate can imply inequality. Saying to gays that they can have the equivalent of marriage but not the name brings up the question, why not? In much the same way that blacks felt like separate but totally equal institutions would be inherently offensive, gays think the same way about ‘marriage’ and ‘marriage-b.’

                  1. A sedan is not a panel van.

                    Both are automobiles but they have different parts

                    Both can get you from place to place but only one is built to carry a load of refrigerators.

                    There are equivalencies between them, but they are not the same and thus have different names.

                    See?

                    1. In Brown v. Board of Education the Court asked: if there are entirely equal, but separate, facilities for whites and blacks, is that OK under equal protection? And their answer was, that even if the facilities were entirely equal in every way, the fact of separating out one race carried an inherent stigma or insult to at least one of them.

                      Now that was dealing with (as the Court assumed for its question) not just equivalent, but exactly equal institutions. So if you can get that perhaps you can get how having separate, inherently equivalent institutions for gay marriage and ‘regular marriage’ might be insulting despite the equivalency.

                      Another way to think about it quite literally is to consider the G.E.D. It is quite literally the ‘equivalent’ of a H.S. Diploma, but if someone who had earned the latter got handed the former they quite likely would be upset.

        4. Gay couples were getting married long before anyone considered legal recognition. The word was redefined socially long before any laws on the subject were made. So that ship has sailed. I’m annoyed that “liberal” doesn’t mean what it used to. And “inflammable” is the only proper word for things that can burn. Tough shit.

        5. “It’s about using government force to redefine a word.”

          I don’t think so.

          I think it’s about using the government to discriminate against people.

          Call it whatever you want, but isn’t that what it necessarily boils down to?

      2. Somebody who really cares about stopping gay people from getting married, please explain it to me. Why does it matter to you?

        I could create a new handle and give it a shot, you know, diverse viewpoints and all that. But, it’s really really hard to care at all about this issue. That is, until illiberal things like the fundamentalist bakery bash. Then it becomes assholes fisting assholes, which is fun for everyone.

      3. And no one understands why!

        Because they also oppose straight marriage?

        And by both gay marriage and straight marriage, Im not referring to the act, but the licensing.

        The act is a-okay with me.

        1. Or how about they don’t want courts deciding what marriage is?

          If the legislatures want to recognize gay marriage, good for them. I really don’t care.

          1. Do you get mad when courts force Chicago and DC to get rid of their gun control policies against their legislature (councils) wishes?

            1. Is there any question you can’t beg? I object to declaring gay marriage a constitutional right. That is the whole issue, you fucking half wit. No one on either side objects to the power of courts to enforce rights. The question is what are those rights.

              1. So you are fine with courts overruling democratic legislatures sometimes. It was hard to get that with all the populist rhetoric you were tossing around.

                The Courts that have been overruling gay marriage bans have been basing their rulings on the EP of the 14th Amendment. You might think that is a wrong conclusion, but all of your ‘judges and top men declaring gay marriage over the people’ is a different thing.

                1. Bo,

                  That is completely fucking idiotic. Of course courts sometimes strike down legislatures and sometimes don’t. That is the whole point.

                  1. John, I am not like you a mind-reader. So when you say something like “Or how about they don’t want courts deciding what marriage is? If the legislatures want to recognize gay marriage, good for them” how am I to know your issue is not with courts overruling legislatures, as that comment appears to say, but something else?

              2. OK, then will you stop insinuating that people who support gay marriage have some secret agenda of curtailing religious freedom or punishing people who they disagree with on social issues and accept that that is what the difference of opinion rests on?

                1. Zeb,

                  Those are the results of gay marriage. People who support court mandated gay marriage either don’t care about those consequences or think they are good.

                  What people like you do is pretend they don’t exist.

                  1. They are possible and reversible results. As Zeb says supra we should not oppose what is right because we think somewhere someone might tack something wrong onto it, oppose the wrong when that bridge is crossed.

                    1. oppose the wrong

                      State licensing of marriage is the wrong.

                    2. I think everyone here would be for getting rid of state licensing for everyone.

                      Situation:government is doing something illegitimate, and in a wrong way.

                      Is it correct to say that fixing the second wrong should be opposed because only the first should be? And that seems different than:

                      Situation: government may do a wrong if another wrong is corrected.

                  2. No, those are the results of public accommodation laws and I fully acknowledge that they exist. They are separate things. Each can and does exist independent of the other. There were anti-discrimination laws applying to gays before gay marriage became an issue in the courts.

                    I really don’t think you are any kind of homophobe, but I cannot fathom your obtuseness on this issue.

                  3. People who support court mandated gay marriage either don’t care about those consequences or think they are good.

                    That is a big load of bullshit. Everything comes with tradeoffs. The fact that I don’t care enough or in the right way to let it change my mind about how equal protection should apply to marriage laws does not mean that I don’t care about those consequences.

                    And I reject the notion that the coercive anti-discrimination stuff is the result of gay marriage or court involvement in the issue. States would still be adding gays to the protected classes even if no court ever took gay marriage up as a constitutional issue.

                2. Who said it was secret?

                  1. It would be secret in the case of every libertarian who favors gay marriage. Perhaps I should have said “all people who support gay marriage” to make it more clear. Of course some people want to curtail religious freedom and force people to make cakes. I am not going to base my views on what those assholes think.

          2. “Or how about they don’t want courts deciding what marriage is?”

            Who should decide what marriage is?

            I say the people getting married!

            Why does the government need to get involved–in denying people who want to get married a license to do so?

            1. The people getting into a relationship with each other should, and will, define the terms of that relationship. But that’s different from the issue of how others not part of that relationship should treat the relationship or the people in it.

              1. Oh, and I oppose the requirement of a license to get married. I oppose dog licensing too, but the license has no bearing on the question of whether the thing that’s licensed is, in fact, a dog.

                1. “I oppose dog licensing too, but the license has no bearing on the question of whether the thing that’s licensed is, in fact, a dog.”

                  The question of whether dogs have the same rights as people makes that a poor analogy. This isn’t about whether dogs and people are the same thing.

                  We’re talking about denying certain people a license because that other people get without any problem.

                  We’re talking about equal protection.

                  1. Sure, equal protection so cat owners can get dog licenses? Why shouldn’t the dog show have to admit their cat? It has a dog license, so legally it’s a dog.

      4. Somebody who really cares about stopping gay people from getting married, please explain it to me. Why does it matter to you?

        I’ve explained a few times n threads here, but I will again, though maybe not in as much detail as you’d like.

        When I first heard about the marriage equality movement in the 1990s, I favored it. But that was a superficial rxn. I just hadn’t thought about the issue much. Once I did, well after the turn of the century, I opposed it because of the damage it would do to the rule of law, similar to the damage that was done when terms of money were redefined legally, so that a dollar is no longer a certain wt. of Ag. “Spouse” is a word whose meaning was established by custom, not by religion or gov’t. It is not a technical term defined by some legal document.

        I have never had anything against people’s acting homosexually, nor is my objection to same sex marriage based on any religious thinking. And I’m especially vexed to see libertarian activists sucked into a superficial take on the issue.

  7. Oh God.

    If I wanted to read this sort of bullshit, I’d be reading Huffington Post or Slate.

    OF course most people think their ideas are more popular than they are, especially when they are propounding a conservative idea – i.e. an idea that was dominant in the past – that is falling by the wayside.

    So what?

    If gay marriage is a socially bad idea (and for the record, I don’t think it is), the number of people who think its a great idea are fucking irrelevant!

    For example, most Bostonians are huge fans of the police riot that apprehended the surviving Marathon bomber. It doesn’t make the police riot any less a bad thing.

    1. Exactly. Like I said above, you have to be a pretty retarded Libertarian to think that the majority’s opinion on an issue has some special credibility in determining its rightness.

    2. a socially bad idea …, the number of people who think its a great idea are fucking irrelevant!

      Is there a way to objectively determine the “social badness” of an idea? Indeed “socially good” or “socially bad” have as much semantic meaning as “social justice”, which is to say, none at all.

      What we can say is that something is socially “acceptable”, of which the amount of people who find said act to be acceptable is the only metric that is relevant.

      1. Is there a way to objectively determine the “social badness” of an idea?

        No. It would be as futile as trying to objectively determine beauty, ugliness.

        That does however not mean that the idea lacks semantic meaning; unless you are arguing that the term society is semantically empty, since something is socially bad merely means that it is bad as it pertains to society.

        1. something is socially bad merely means that it is bad as it pertains to society.

          Society is merely a group of individuals. To talk of good or bad or harmful or beneficial to society is a fallacy of reification, in my opinion. We can meaningfully talk about what is good, bad, beneficial, or harmful to individuals within that society, but we can’t abstract those effects.

          1. I don’t know. I think it’s fair to make generalizations. If something is a massive good for 90% of the individuals in the group, and either neutral or a small harm to the remaining 10%, it’s appropriate to say that it’s good for the group. Otherwise, how do you talk about any characteristics of a group at all?

          2. A society isn’t solely a grouping of individuals. What makes a society a society is that there is some aspect of community. If you join a fencing club, the society is your common interest in fencing and willingness to work together to further your enjoyment in the sport. A society that opposes breast cancer is a community of people that are looking for a cure/ways of preventing the disease.

            We furthermore use “society” as a short hand for “civil society” i.e. the group of people in the polity which we happen to reside. In that case, the community arises from our being part of that polity. Civil society is not a consensual society (because we ancaps have failed in our nefarious plot to impose freedom on people).

            I agree that in judging a harm we have to identify which individuals are harmed. In my example of the Boston/Watertown PD riot that took place between Arsenal and Mt Auburn Streets on August 19, the people harmed were the people who were confined to their homes, had their guns jammed in their faces, who had their property searched, who had their property damaged by panicked gunfire etc. In the case of gay marriage, I can’t really identify who is harmed, and it is one of the reasons why I am indifferent to the issue (the extension of the subsidies to a slightly expanded group doesn’t exercise me – although I support getting the state out of marriage). But presumably the people who think it is a “social bad” can make that argument.

            1. Claiming that because a large enough percentage of people gathered from a random collection of people born within certain boundaries is equivalent to active participation in a club is odd… and wrong.

              Simply put – the vast majority of people are, by luck of birth, born into a society for which they never joined and will have little choice/ability to leave.

              A fencing club… not so much…

              Then to take that concept and assume such a forced collection of strangers in any society can get together in order to actively agree to become a “society opposing breast cancer” just compounds the original error.

              For instance – using such logic one could also make the claim that NK, Zimbabwe, and other similar countries are filled with people who as a society oppose things like… eating food in life sustaining quantities and being free from the random loss of of freedom and life.

    3. OF course most people think their ideas are more popular than they are

      Except that SSM supporters underestimate the popularity of their ideas.

      This lag between a shift in public opinion and the realization that public opinion has shifted might explain why politicians are so far behind public opinion on issues like the Drug War.

    4. “OF course most people think their ideas are more popular than they are”

      Now wait a minute, that is not as obvious or prevalent as your statement implies. There is a pretty well known idea that many people adopt a ‘every right thinking American agrees with me’ attitude that emboldens them to make what could be a matter of diverse disagreement into a one-size-fits-all policy. A common argument among opponents of SSM is that marriage ‘just is’ a man and a woman uniting for procreation, that it has so long and so widely been recognized that changing it is a major upheaval and violence to the very concept imposed by elites. If there is actually a lot of disagreement on this then that is relevant.

      1. silent v makes a good point regarding the drug war. A lot of people don’t realize how popular, at the very least, legalizing marijuana and reforming other drug laws are.

      2. A common argument among opponents of SSM is that marriage ‘just is’ a man and a woman uniting for procreation

        I question how common the bolded part is.

        It exists, of course, but seems very catholic. I guess that could be considered “common”.

        1. It is a common argument among prominent opponents of SSM marriage such as Robert George, Maggie Gallagher, etc.

          1. As I dont know who those people are, I dont count them towards common.

            1. Or prominent.

              1. With all due respect, your ignorance of someone or something might not dispositive of their wider prominence.

                Gallagher and George’s group the National Organization for Marriage has been quite politically potent and prominent, whether you have heard of it or their leadership in it.

                1. your ignorance of someone or something might not dispositive of their wider prominence.

                  Actually, I think it is. Im pretty familiar with lots and lots of stuff, so if the name doesnt even sound vaguely familiar, then, no, not prominent.

                  Of course, I just tune out organizations like that so that may be why.

                  1. Again, that you do not know about them might say more about what you know about than their general prominence.

                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N…..e#Activity

                    1. Possible.

                      Or, maybe, they are unimportant people spending time on an unimportant issue, so they arent worth knowing about.

                      Im familiar with most of the backup catchers in the National League however. You know, people doing important shit.

    5. OF course most people think their ideas are more popular than they are, especially when they are propounding a conservative idea – i.e. an idea that was dominant in the past – that is falling by the wayside.

      I think this is the most important point about why bashing SSM opponents on not realizing they are in the minority is just being a dick: it’s been what, like 2-3 years since they were the majority they think they are?

    6. “OF course most people think their ideas are more popular than they are, especially when they are propounding a conservative idea – i.e. an idea that was dominant in the past – that is falling by the wayside.”

      I would say more than that it’s a regional thing. Gay marriage opponents in Texas may in fact be the majority…in Texas. So the people in their region agree with them, they think the country agrees with them.

    7. For example, most Bostonians are huge fans of the police riot that apprehended the surviving Marathon bomber. It doesn’t make the police riot any less a bad thing.

      You’re on the losing side of history, Tarran. Police riots are the future. Get over it.

  8. I would caution against believing the poll numbers on anything related to the Political Gay agenda. It has been made abundantly clear in recent years that anyone who is even slightly critical of Gays, the Gay lifestyle, and so forth, will get dog-piled. I’m not saying those who oppose Gay Marriage and other such measures are a persecuted silent majority; I’m suggesting that getting too smug about “the majority agree with us” is a good way to get caught flat-footed by discrepancies between what people say and what they do.

    Sexuality is a perpetual sore point, and as such is only partially subject to reasoned argument. It’s best to keep that in mind. The longer I watch this, the more inclined I am to think that issues of sexuality may mimic issues of hair-length; subject to irrational swings in public opinion and likely to be far more heated than the facts on the ground justify.

    1. “It has been made abundantly clear in recent years that anyone who is even slightly critical of Gays, the Gay lifestyle, and so forth, will get dog-piled.”

      I think that depends largely on where you live and the ‘milieu’ in question.

    2. yes Schofield. Reason acts like the pendulum only swings their way. They seem to completely lack the imagination that society might some day get a lot less friendly to gays. Because of this, they are unbothered by what is being done to the law to get their way. When pendulum eventually swings back, and it always does, Libertarians or their intellectual decedents are going to regret how this was done.

      But no one will listen. This is the CULTURE WAR. And once something becomes part of that, any sort of rational thinking about it beyond “I want to win” goes out the window.

      1. I read somewhere (can’t find a link but I remember it as a credible source), that the revulsion toward homosexual behavior had a strong (50%+) hereditary link. Stronger than homosexuality itself, in fact.

        That means people that don’t like gays, are in fact, “born that way”. And if that’s the case, they’re not going to change.

        1. No. And gay rights as we know it is the product of a very small group of people. That doesn’t mean it is wrong. It just means its existence is pretty precarious.

          1. I wouldn’t go that far. Legal rights are harder to take away than to grant. That being said, it’s unlikely that homosexuality will be generally considered OK and normal in the long run. Right now, because of the gay marriage issue, there’s a lot of energy behind the social pressure pushing people to accept homosexuality as such, but I don’t see that lasting long after the particular legal issue dies, for exactly the reason I mentioned above.

            1. If the courts can say the “right” doesn’t extend to polygamists, they can say it doesn’t extend to pretty much anyone they want to.

            2. And when I say a small group of people, I don’t mean in absolute terms. I mean in comparison to the entire world population.

  9. I say spread the pain.

  10. Heck, one in ten Americans think HTML is a sexually-transmitted disease.

    What in the fuck does this have to do what anything? Hurr durr! ‘Merikans are dumb? No shit. You know, the electorate voted for Obama. You know, the same majority who Elizabeth is on bended knee offering “Vox Populi, Vox Dei” platitudes for.

    If homosexuals want to get married, more power to them. They should have the right to suffer like any other married people and get bled like lambs by the divorce industry. Do I have to stand up and cheer and write “NO H8” on my face or some emotive bullshit like that? No. Don’t I believe in “marriage equality”? No. Because I don’t support the idea of the state having a say in my cohabitative arrangements.

    Can we trade this Nolan woman in for @LucyStag or some new Tracy Oppenheimer videos?

  11. It’s likely the insulation factor “how could he have won, no one I know voted for him.”

    I really don’t particularly care about this issue. Homosexuality is definitely innate, I don’t blame them from acting on their orientation, but I don’t think their orientation is in any way “equal” to heterosexuality i.e. how normal people act. It’s particularly strange for them to claim they “love” each other. How can you have love without a woman? It makes no sense, a total perversion of the word.

    1. Do lesbians not exist in your world?

      1. They hardly exist in any word. Literally, most of them are bisexual, they discover they are bisexual in adulthood, and they frequently abandon the orientation when they are able to get a decent male mate. Bisexual women can, I suppose, have a type “love” for each other, of course no one much objects to that, “homophobia” is directed at male homosexuals 90% of the time.

        1. Citations needed. Lots of them.

    2. Weirdly, beloved commenter “Jordan” was posting in the AM Links without a period at the end of his/her handle. Are you the frontguard for a wash of trolls pretending to be regular commenters?

      1. Are you trying to say about posters with periods in their name…. Mr. Tulpa!

        1. Imagine that either I typed that competently, or EDIT BUTTON! existed.

          1. Edit button equality is something all commenters can agree on!

      2. They’re all over the place.

    3. It’s particularly strange for them to claim they “love” each other.

      This must be one of the most retarded statements I’ve ever seen. Way more retarded than usual anti-gay claims.

      1. It makes sense to me. Think about it, what would straight men be like without a woman around to say “no.” Well that’s how the gays are.

    4. Jordan”.”?

      1. I predict a flurry of Warti Jon and Episiarc comments by the end of the day.

        My predictions are usually about as accurate as a weatherman in the early ’90s though so I wouldn’t fret too much.

        1. Oddly enough, the trolls have been going crazy ever since Tulpa outed himself. What a shocking coincidence. And shrike has been going crazy ever since Epi has started calling him Tulpa. What a shocking coincidence.

          1. Wait, Tulpa outed himself? As what?

            1. Thanks, Wartster.

    5. How can you have love without a woman?

      Do you not love your father, brothers, close male friends, etc?

      1. Nah dude, that’s gay.

      2. Fair enough, but storge and philos are a different animals than eros and agape.

        Murk is still an idiot, though.

        1. English is odd sometimes. We have a bigger vocabulary than just about any other language, and yet at times we are stuck reusing words.

          Greek has 4 words for love and we have 1. WTF?

          Another one is “right”. I really wish we could distinguish between things like the “right to bear arms” which comes from nature and/or nature’s God and things like “right to a jury trial” which comes from the government.

          1. I recommend Anna Wierzbicka’s book Understanding Cultures Through Their Key Words. I think she talks about it in that book, but I might be confusing it with Intercultural Pragmatics Wierzbicka traces the use of “right” in English to the Germanic concept of “trial by combat”, that is the winner of the combat was “right” (i.e. straight and true).

            1. Wierzbicka says that in the culture “right” evolved in, rights quite literally came from “might”.

              1. Looks like an interesting read, like a scholarly treatment of Orwell’s idea that the words we use define the thoughts we can have. I’ll have to check it out.

                Speaking of lingustics, what’s your opinion of John McWhorter’s work? I quite enjoyed Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue, and his arguments seemed compelling enough, but I don’t know enough about the subject to be able to really evaluate him.

          2. “I love pizza, but not the way I love you” were the words that ended a relationship for me many years ago.

            1. A friend of mine once told me about the time his dad gave him the sex talk. “Well, you see son, sex is like pizza. There’s good pizza, and there’s really good pizza.”

              1. and there’s deep-dish pizza.

                1. The deeper the leavening, the sweeter the eatening. Just don’t let any of your friends find out or you’ll never hear the end of it.

              2. does this mean that deep-dish is hoggin’?

  12. Did the people bitching about this article simply reporting a fact about polling and a group’s misperception of the popularity of their position say the same thing when Reason wrote articles about how liberals massively overestimate how many people agree with them on gun control?

    1. If recall, those articles about Bloomberg’s bought and paid for “92% of Americans want more gun control” weren’t very favorable to the poll, nor did they offer up smug sneering at the minority for being the minority (according to the poll).

    2. As a matter of fact, it is damn annoying when libertarians pretend that their knowledge of popular polling makes them inherently better people than ignorant progs.

      Gun safety stats are a different matter, since they are indicative of an actual issue where pros have failed to do their due diligence in supporting a policy ostensibly promoting public safety. In that case, the criticism rests on the impulse to restrict freedom on a basis which the most superficial analysis shows to be false. Likewise, an argument against gay marriage is better served by demographic data about gays or data about Denmark’s experience with marriage, and not so much mockery about polling which has only recently reflected majority support for gay marriage.

      1. “Gun safety stats are a different matter, since they are indicative of an actual issue where pros have failed to do their due diligence in supporting a policy ostensibly promoting public safety. In that case, the criticism rests on the impulse to restrict freedom on a basis which the most superficial analysis shows to be false.”

        I wasn’t talking about gun safety or crime stats. That wasn’t the point I was making.

        For the record, I agree that there are far better arguments for anything beyond appeal to the majority. I’m simply pointing that many of the people criticizing Reason for this sort of article would not be saying what they’re saying if this was about progressives overestimating how many people agree with them on issue X. I commend you for being consistent, but do you really disagree that many others here wouldn’t be?

        1. Look- when someone promotes legislation among the grounds of “People want foo!”, it is appropriate in the context of that argument to say “The hell they do- just look at these polls.” But only when followed by, “But appeals to majority are stupid…”

          Further, I am ok with people writing articles about the tactical or political issues caused by swings in majorities. For example, the revolt in CO regarding gun control laws passed in the wake of Sandy Hook simply can’t be discussed without talking about just how wrong Legislators judged the popular sentiment on the issue.

          But this article is beneath Reason. It is nothing more than a chance to say, “Boy- people who disagree with me sure are dumb.” That is clear from the sniping and religion baiting in the first paragraph to the complete lack of analysis in the rest of it.

  13. Here’s a thought I had the other day:

    In the 90s, the anti-libertarian agendas from the right wing were bans on flag burning and school official-led prayer. Today, those issues are nowhere near the public radar — there is no traction even among conservatives to make flag-burning a federal offense anymore, or to re-establish prayer as a norm in public schools.

    In contrast, the agenda of the left at the time was smoking bans. Things like putting sexual orientation as a protected class were talked about by wackos in the faculty lounge, and food bans among the unrealistic bogeymen used by smokers to scare people out of supporting sensible, commonsense legislation.

    Today, smoking bans are near-universal, placing sexual orientation as a protected class unquestioned, and ‘bad’ food bans are becoming a regular fixture of leftist states. All the while, libertarians attack religious yokels as some sort of insurmountable barrier to creating the Libertarian future and exonerate those wanting sexual orientation as a protected class as merely overzealous. Just a thought that perhaps libertarians’ trust in its choice of cultural allies is misplaced.

    1. Where do you get that libertarians trusted the left as their cultural allies? One can not help but notice that most of the criticism of the Reason writer in this thread comes from the ‘right leaning’ posters here.

      I would also note that the political traction on the right re: flag burning and prayer in school has not so much waned as it has run into judicial rebuke. In other words, the right was successful in passing policy on these points, they just ran into constitutional problems that can not be voted away. Perhaps the policies the left are pushing now will run into the same trouble.

      1. From this and many other articles on Reason, other libertarian sources, and about 15-20 years interaction with libertarians in my personal and academic life.

        Besides Rockwell’s crowd (which has its own bizarre subculture and inappropriate treatment of Kulturkampf), libertarian treatment of these issues tends to be that ‘excesses’ like non-discrimination laws against gays are correctable flaws among gay marriage supporters, while similar deviations among social conservatives are held up as proof of incompatibility.

        Libertarians are not well-served by tempering their criticisms of profs, since progs have demonstrated a much greater effectiveness at implementing their anti-freedom preferences than SoCons have.

        1. Hell, it doesn’t even require deviation from NAP to elicit libertarian ire: witness the articles condemning SoCons for the recent AZ bill protecting religious freedom of association and contract.

          1. The criticisms of the AZ bill I saw here were limited to the motivations of the bill’s proponents while recognizing that the right at issue should be supported. Perhaps you saw some other ones?

            1. If the purported motives of a laws supporters are to be a significant criterion in our support or opposition to a law, we should all stop pretending that principle motivates us and join one of the two main parties. Otherwise, it is entirely appropriate to point out that motivation has never, ever been a criterion for evaluation a law’s impact on individuals — especially from a NAP perspective.

              1. Now wait a minute, it is not un-libertarian to criticize the motives of people pushing or exercising rights we agree with.

                A good example was that when the stop-and-frisk policy of NYC police was struck down some here complained that it was struck down not because of the government intrusion but because it was found to have fell more heavily on a protected class. I wonder if you saw that the same way.

                1. That criticism is based on the possibility that stop-&-frisk may be revived in some “equal rx” form.

        2. There’s a reason for this lopsidedness, and it goes back more than 15-20 yrs. ?more like 40, and Reason fell into it late, long after CATO: A need to distinguish the libertarian tendency from the general “right” that most outside observers see it in. “See? We’re not conservatives, we deserve special att’n all our own.”

      2. For example, most Bostonians are huge fans of the police riot that apprehended the surviving Marathon bomber. It doesn’t make the police riot any less a bad thing.

        If you were born before twitter (BT), you’d realize how significant the left (liberals vs. progressives) have changed over the last 30 years.

        1. Sorry, quoted wrong text. Meant to quote.

          Where do you get that libertarians trusted the left as their cultural allies?

  14. “If you don’t like straight marriage, don’t get straight married.”

    “If you don’t like gay marriage, don’t get gay married.”

    “If you don’t like polygamous marriage, report any violations of the law to the FBI.”

    Fuck state-sanctioned discrimination in all its forms.

    1. +3 sister wives

    2. Fuck state-sanctioned discrimination in all its forms.

      The only acceptable solution is to eliminate state licensing of marriage.

      And the reason its the only acceptable solution is that it is the only solution. Anything else is a bandaid at best.

      1. The only acceptable solution is to eliminate state licensing of marriage.

        And yet, somehow, there is no actual movement devoted to this goal, where there are a number of organizations whose explicit goal is to deny state-sanctioned marriage to homos while preserving it for heteros.

        Talk is cheap, robc.

        1. Ive pointed out to you the actual movement multiple times.

        2. Talk is cheap, robc.

          Actually, it isnt.

          Time is money and talk takes time.

  15. You mentioned “marriage equality” twice in your post and on multiple occasions likened gay marriage to marriage equality. But there are Americans out there that are still being denied the right to marry who they wan by the stat for arbitrary reasons. I don’t think it fair to equate merely adding more people to a state-recognized group that gets additional benefits to some kind of real “equality”.

    A step in the right direction, maybe. But it’s still discriminatory and arbitrary in every sense of the word.

    1. But there are Americans out there that are still being denied the right to marry who they wan by the stat for arbitrary reasons.

      Incest and polygamy?

      1. That’s part of it, yes. But what about the two spinster sisters that live together and want to get the free government bennies that only married couples are allowed to enjoy? Or the hippie commune that shares all resources and wants to establish a contract that confers all rights that currently only couples are allowed to enjoy?

        It’s not as simple as the “if you think marriage equality doesn’t end when we give rights to gays then you are all for incest and polygamy”.

        1. But what about the two spinster sisters that live together and want to get the free government bennies that only married couples are allowed to enjoy?

          An aunt and my grandmother lived together for decades into their dotage and my family was aghast when I suggested they should be able to legally incorporate to protect against one of them dying and the other being turned out of the house.

          1. They can do that. Just put the house in both of their names with joint tenancy with right of survivorship.

            There isn’t any property benefit of marriage you can’t create yourself via contract.

            1. Not owners. I believe they were leasing. I meant more the sudden loss of income due to one of their deaths. It ended up being moot. The extended family bought a house to store all of the old people in the family and hired care workers until my grandmother died, but that option isn’t available to all or probably even most spinsters.

              1. Of course, I am not sure how marriage can insure against the loss of a second income either.

      2. First cousins in a slight majority of states.

        Not only that, but my state refused to acknowledge marriage of first cousins performed in other states.

        Just last month the identically worded law wrt gay marriages in other states was thrown out by the courts, but the first cousin law stands.

        1. s/refused/refuses/

          Present tense.

    2. No no no! Preventing gays from getting married is discriminatory because you’re treating them different from straights. Well, I mean, they can still member someone of the opposite sex (and meets the other criteria), exactly like a straight guy. But it’s discriminatory because… they can’t marry who they love! Yeah, that’s it. Now, obviously that logic* doesn’t apply to any other cases.

      *you must be allowed to marry who you love or it is discrimination

      1. Are you just as blase about the sentencing disparity between cocaine and crack?

        Poor black kids should totally buy cocaine instead of crack. They’d spend less time in jail for it.

        1. I have no idea what your point is. I support getting rid of all drug laws, not just adding a third category to the sentencing* while refusing to do anything about the remaining crack penalties.

          *taking it out of the current crack portion and having the same penalties as coke for the new category

          1. I was taking a crack at you being glib here:

            Well, I mean, they can still member someone of the opposite sex (and meets the other criteria), exactly like a straight guy.

            It may not matter to you, but you have the most legal options at your disposal should you choose to get married.

            1. Since we’re both males, we have exactly the same number of legal options (neglecting the difference in size of our immediate families). You may not find many of them appealing, but that’s a different point.

              1. Now you’re being pedantic to evade my point. You know that “to the partner of your choice” was implied. If two men fall in love they’re legally hamstrung in ways that a straight couple wouldn’t be. It’s fine if you want to be glib about that, but it certainly matters to those of us it affects.

      2. I think the argument is that being gay is like being black: not a choice so you can’t discriminate against the gay ‘race’, if you will.

        Polygamy is a choice, so the state need not cater to those deviants. It would be too hard and confusing on courts anyway.

        So ironically the “it’s a deviant choice!” argument, formerly used against gays, is, for now, being used by gay marriage advocates to oppose polygamy.

        Although to be fair, there are some people I’ve talked to that agree there’s no reason not to allow polygamy among consensual adults.

        1. Every argument against state recognition of marriage contracts with multiple partners is predicated on the so-called fact that the courts wouldn’t know what to do since there’s no precedent. And that argument is asinine because the courts rule every day on contracts signed between multiple parties.

        2. Polygamy is a choice

          The tendency for heterosexual men to stick their dicks into as many available females it can is just as natural as any homosexual tendency.

          1. Polygamy is a choice in the same way that monogamy is. I was referring to state recognition of lifestyles, and in that respect everyone makes a choice to enter into a relationship.

            1. I was referring to this comment by GMSM:

              Polygamy is a choice, so the state need not cater to those deviants.

              If the argument is that the state must cater to any natural tendency in relationships then catering to polygamists is probably even more warranted then catering to monogamists.

              1. I know, I just wanted the threading to make sense and not branch off into two directions.

        3. Sure polygamy is a choice. So is marrying a person of another race. The issue of it being a “right” is not governed by whether it is a choice.

          1. Polygamy, meaning actually marrying multiple people, is a choice. Being attracted to multiple people is not.

            Exactly like being gay and being in a gay marriage.

            1. Being attracted to little kids isn’t a choice either. But that doesn’t mean we should get rid of the age of consent.

              1. But being a pedophile shouldn’t be a crime. Being a pedophile who acts on those urges should be.

                1. Sure. But no one wants to make gay marriage a crime.

        4. “Although to be fair, there are some people I’ve talked to that agree there’s no reason not to allow polygamy among consensual adults.”

          But I bet you they don’t really care one way or the other, and they don’t go around calling anti-polygamists bigots and such.

          It becomes clear after thinking a short time about how these people react, that all of these issues are really about religion. Outside of principled libertarians, the people favor gay marriage and not polygamy do so because they don’t like the particular associated religions. That’s the only conceivable way of explaining the internal contradiction.

          1. ^^THIS^^

            For the left gay marriage is nothing but a club to criminalize forms of Christianity they don’t like. I wish Libertarians would see that.

            1. I wish you and your fellow reactionaries would see that we DON’T CARE because legalizing/recognizing gay marriage is still the right thing to do.

    3. Obviously the issue is, for the majority of its champions, inseparable from LGBTQAIFJKFDKSJFLJ equality and cultural acceptance.

      They don’t give a fuck about the polygamists or the single people tax laws discriminate against.

      1. the single people tax laws discriminate against.

        Can I get a ruling on this? Half the time people complain that single people are being discriminated against on their taxes and half the time people complain about the “marriage penalty” and why would gays want it in the first place.

        Serious question, my knowledge of tax law is damn near zero.

        The only appreciable benefit as far as I can tell would be estate taxes, which a single person would only be able to benefit if they wiped out (which I’m in favor of).

        1. You also have the gift tax break on transfers from spouse to spouse, you have disability benefits for the spouses of people eligible for SSI payments, you have qualifiers based on size of household for other transfer payments, Section 8 qualification, etc that are impacted by whether or not people are married.

          There are some serious financial benefits for the married that are often overlooked by libertarians because we’re not constantly trying to see what ways we can glom off of taxpayers.

          1. Thanks. That helps clarify.

            I know my mother was selling life insurance and ended up working with some gay couples. After years of donating (heavily) to block gay marriage in CA, she got so fed up with trying to set up bulletproof contracts for her gay clients that she reversed course and wanted consistent gay marriage recognition on the state and federal level. I think now that she’s mostly working with straight clients again she has forgotten her sudden zeal for gay marriage recognition, but it was entertaining while it lasted.

        2. My understanding is that the tax laws on marriage are intended to encourage procreation by lessening the burden with a credit for children.

          Beyond that, I’ve always had the understanding that people who file as single and zero are the ones that get hardest. I could be wrong since I’m also not an expert on tax law.

          1. people who file as single and zero are the ones that get hardest.

            I file married with five deductions and I don’t have any form of erectile dysfunction.

            1. *hit hardest

              Although that explains how you keep planting babies into Banjos. You two trying again for this year or has that window closed?

            2. In fact, I’ll probably be filing with six deductions on our 2014 return.

              1. How many more deductions until y’all are eligible for WIC vouchers?

                1. At my rate of pay, we’re probably looking at having to go to some Duggar-level of insanity.

        3. For income taxes, it’s a penalty if the spouses make close to the same income, a benefit if one makes a lot more than the other.

    4. That is a very astute point. Marriage equality ought to include polygamists and people who wish to marry within their family. If it doesn’t, then it is not marriage equality. It is just letting the favorite group of the moment get in on the act of benefits at the expense of everyone else.

      It also should be pointed out that there is nothing stopping any gay from getting married now. It is not illegal to claim that you are married to a same sex partner. What this debate is about is the ability of gays to get the government to force other people to recognize their marriages.

      There is so much orwellian double speak going on in this debate and by people who should know better.

      1. What this debate is about is the ability of gays to get the government to force other people to recognize their marriages.

        I suppose this is true inasmuch as it will, inevitably, end up codified in anti-discrimination statutes.

        I’ve always felt that client-based businesses should have absolute discretion in who they do business with, including hiring a photographer or a baker. That seems like a more easily defensible position than the libertarian ideal that everyone should be able to refuse service to anyone they don’t like.

        1. It is true even without discrimination statutes. If a state has gay marriage, a business can’t say “we give spousal benefits but not to gays”. If you give spousal benefits, you have to define “spouse” as the state defines it. Indeed, one of the bigger horror stories always trotted out in support of this is the private hospital that doesn’t recognize the gay lover as a spouse.

          That is the whole reason to get married before the state. If it wasn’t for that, who the hell needs a license?

  16. I neither support nor oppose gay marriage. I oppose government-sanctioned marriage of any kind.

    1. I think (and hope) that’s the standard libertarian reply. Unfortunately, I think too many of the libertarian “voices” out there figure they need to jump on this mariage equality issue since “the government already sanctions marriage between hetero couples and it would be wrong not to confer he same rights for gays. I think they are also afraid to get labeled as homophobic if they want to abolish state-sanctioned marriage and replace it with recognition of civil unions for all. I suppose some of that fear is based in fact since so many were so quiet on abolition of state-sanctioned marriage prior to gays wanting the same rights as straight couples.

      1. and it would be wrong not to confer he same rights for gays.

        And this is why those responses are not “libertarian.” Do rights flow.from the.individual or.from the.State? This.is a pit trap that is so full of libertarians, statists have to keep pouring hydrofluoric acid in so the new ones can’t climb out via the enormous.pile of.bones.

      2. Eh, gay marriage doesn’t violate NAP and it does seem like a fairly straightforward way of resolving some issues cohabitation gays have had with disposing of their property as they see fit.

        I’m a ‘civil unions for all’ guy, but gay marriage is hardly an issue that should condemn a libertarian.

        1. Government sanctioned marriage of.any.kind violates the NAP due.to forcibly requiring special treatment of those who are party to.it.

          1. That doesn’t mean all forms of it are equally bad.

            1. If you agree that state sanctioned marriage is a violation of NAP and further agree that violating NAP is “bad” – then by definition all forms are equally as bad.

              Unless you’re also including hypotheticals such as a society with laws forcing certain “marriages” – though that violates NAP as well.

              Either way – if the reason marriage a is bad is due to how it was formed, then all other marriages formed in the same way are equally as bad.

        2. I dont see the need for civil unions either. Im not sure why any paperwork needs to be filed with the state.

          1. Well, since one of the few real reasons for the government is to be able to enforce contracts, I see this as an actual responsibility of the courts.

            I didn’t mean to imply that all civil unions had to be the same, only that that was a better way to go than marriage contracts.

            1. Sure, but why does the paperwork need to be filed with the state?

              Contracts are normally just kept around and pulled out by the lawyer when things get to court.

              1. Hey, I’m with you, but when it comes to custody, survivorship and several other issues its best to pre-empt the red tape that comes with only pulling out the contract when necessary.

                1. That’s what I said. What’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation.

                  1. Well, seeing as I didn’t respond to you, your little nuggets of wisdom aren’t really necessary. kthxbai

                    1. I’m not mocking you personally but all the tough libertarians proclaiming their opposition to government-sanctioned marriage while being married themselves.

                    2. Hey, dickface, I’m married because I wanted to marry my wife. It is also the only way I can confer survivorship rights to my wife and allows for her to be on my insurance.

                      I am forced to play the state’s game because they have forbidden the free market to do its own thing and I must do it to properly file my taxes.

                    3. But the gays, them. That’s where we draw the line.

                    4. Why don’t you read every single fucking comment I’ve made on the issue and then come back and apologize for totally mischaracterizing my position.

                    5. I’m not mocking you personally but all the tough libertarians proclaiming their opposition to government-sanctioned marriage while being married themselves.

                      I oppose state roads but I still drive on them.

                      ITS THE EXACT SAME FUCKING ISSUE. EXACTLY THE FUCKING SAME.

                      I oppose state schools, but guess where I went from 1 thru grad school.

                      ITS THE EXACT SAME FUCKING ISSUE.

                2. Then I guess wills should be published in the local paper when created too.

                  Wouldnt want to wait until needed.

                  1. But a will is a contract with only one party…until that party dies, right? Then the other parties are notified and the contract is enforced.

                    As for living wills, are they not executed at the courts and not just “handled” until a dispute arises?

                    Those are serious questions, by the way.

                    1. I dont think a will technically qualifies as a contract, its some other type of document. There are enough lawyers around to clarify.

                      And Im pretty sure living wills are similar, I dont think courts are involved at all.

                    2. Can we get a lawyer or two to chime in on this? I’m curious to know if my assumptions are correct so I don’t look stupid using them in future arguments.

                    3. Sloopy.,

                      You don’t have to show anyone your will until you die.

                      All a living will is is instructions about what to do if you are incapacitated. It only goes to court if your family disputes something about it, say a hospital refuses to enforce it or something.

                    4. And lastly, a will is not a contract. There is no mutual consideration and you can change it at any time for any reason up until your death.

                    5. Thanks for the clarification, John. I’ll not be using wills in my “contractual” argument IRT marriage equality.

      3. I don’t think many people here are afraid to voice this position. That many of them are straight-married doesn’t concern them at all. I guess, it’s what’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation.

        1. Well, I’m not married, either gay or straight, and the main reason for that is I believe the government has no legitimate say in that aspect of my life.

          1. I obviously meant folks like sloop, rc dean, and john who see no contradiction between their own marriages and the “standard libertarian” position on marriage.

            1. Where did I say that, ass? I said libertarian “voices”, meaning the talking heads that are put on TV as supposedly representative of libertarian beliefs.

              Do I even know you? How do you know what my belief systems are?

              1. You fully agreed with the following statement “I oppose government-sanctioned marriage of any kind.”

                But somehow your government-approved marriage is totally fine.

              2. I, like sloop, will get married. I will take it a step further. I will force everyone I know to recognize my spouse as my spouse even if they don’t like me. I’ll even change my facebook status! bwahahahhahahaha!

            2. Im getting married next month and there will be a license and everything. But there are 3 people involved and I only get one vote.

              1. And Im pretty sure my vote doesnt count.

            3. So, let’s see. Maybe, they developed their opinions after they got married, never having thought of.it.before. or.maybe, the complications of.living outside of state sanction are to.onerous.for.some.

              Or maybe they should all get state-sanctioned divorces to…prove what point, exactly?

            4. grr, you may be misreading my take on this.

              (1) I got no problem with gay people getting married.

              (2) Somewhere north of 90% of all arguments, pro and con, on this issue are utter tripe. I concern myself with calling out the tripe where I see it.

        2. I refer to those people as “my rights libertarians.” MRLs are all about preserving the rights that matter to them, but everyone else can go it alone. Well enough, so far, but there is nothing like the howls of indignation from an MRL when you aren’t on-board with his rights.

          1. You know I could actually take a stand against government-sanctioned marriage. My partner and I have been together for the last nine years. We always lived in states and provinces where same-sex marriage was recognized. And we’re not married.

            But then you have sloop bragging about six deductions on his tax returns because of his marriage and his principled stand against government-sanctioned marriage in the same sub-thread.

            1. I dont see the issue there.

              Im going to cash my SS checks.

              And I will continue to drive on roads.

              1. “And I will continue to drive on roads.”

                While opposing giving driving privileges to 2-3% of the population because that would require the government to build more roads and that’s statist.

                1. I said when I had this argument with Tonio that I oppose the building or new roads to areas that “need” them. Even while I take advantage of mine.

                  So, Yes.

                  Your analogy is a bit off, the roads themselves are equivalent to the marriage licenses. So its the new roads Im opposing just like its the new licenses.

                  But, in either case, if the legislature decides to “build” them, no big deal. I oppose it, but I dont want the roads torn up either.

                  1. What’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation.

                    Perfect.

                    1. So grrizzly, I assume you dont drive on roads then? Take the helicopter to work?

                    2. And you will be running your SS checks thru the shredder instead of cashing them?

            2. How am I bragging? I pay a shit ton of taxes and my deductions are earned under the idiotic taxation system we have in place. But does that mean that I shouldn’t try to recoup what has been stolen from me, even if I have to use the system in place to do the recouping?

              1. Especially since a gay man with 4 kids could claim all but one of your deductions, so its not like the system is entirely imbalanced against him.

                And whether the marriage increases or decreases the taxes depends on a number of things, so that isnt clear cut anyway.

              2. Of course you should use every advantage of the existing taxation system. But then your opposition to government-sanctioned marriage is purely symbolic. Unlike avoiding roads, raising a family is entirely possible without a marriage license. There are millions of examples.

                1. You’ve resorted to splitting hairs here. I am recouping what has been stolen from me by using the system in place. Doing so is the exact same thing as driving on roads but complaining about them being publicly financed.

                  Besides, I have to be married for all kinds of things like adding my wife to my insurance (thanks to state guidelines on what constitutes a “family” IRT insurance in California, the ability to visit my children or wife should they end up in a hospital, the ability to admit or discharge them from a hospital, the ability to sell community property on my own, the ability to take or remove my children from certain places, and the list goes on.

                  State sanctioned marriage is an essential component of several activities in this day and age.

    2. We have a winner.

    3. That’s the obviously correct position, but unfortunately this is the KulturKampf, so you need to take a firmer position than that.

      Or worse, you’re only saying that because you’re homophobic and are bitter that you lost. I’ve actually been accused of being like some cities in the past that closed their public swimming pools rather than letting blacks integrate.

      1. Nope. I have a lesbian friend who looked shockedwhen I told her I oppose state sanction3d gay marriage and followed up with all state sanctioned marriage. But she seemed to accept the.idea. or at least she.knows me.well enough.toturn her.head when she rolls.her.eyes.at my strange opinionssl and leave.it at that.

      2. That response only makes sense if you also put it with the understanding of what “government marriage” is. Government sanctioned marriage is the ability to use the force of law to force other people to recognize your marriage. That is what this debate is about.

        If someone wants to take the position that the government should never force anyone to recognize another person’s marriage, then that is a consistent libertarian position. That would mean that a Catholic would be free to not recognize the marriage of an employee who married outside of the Catholic church or a racist not recognize the marriage of a customer or employee who married someone of another race.

        Rather than using Orwellian terms like “marriage equality”. Libertarians would be better served by being honest and saying “we want an end to government forced recognition of any marriage”.

        1. I am 100% open that I want to end government marriage licenses. If they do exist though, I don’t think they should be limited to straight couples.

          1. Okay. But if we are going to have government marriage, and we are, who should determine what a “marriage” is? The legislature or the courts?

            I would argue that it should be the legislature. If it is the courts, you are giving the courts the power to read pretty much whatever right they want into the constitution. Worse still, you are making marriage subject to the whims of our robed overlords. Whatever your objections to government defined marriage are, it is even worse if courts rather than the voters decide what it is.

            Right now, the Courts are saying “we like gays but don’t like Polygamists, so gays you get a right to be married and polygamists can go fuck themselves”. You really think that is a good way to do things?

            If the majority of the country supports gay marriage, why do you need the courts? Wouldn’t it be better to just let the Democratic process play out? If you do that, you don’t create the danger of courts arbitrarily deciding other things are “rights”.

            1. Actually, its a more general question that even you are stating.

              Who should define words for use in legislation? The legislature or the judiciary?

              There is a definitions section in most laws. And I dont think the judiciary should be messing around in that section without extreme reason.

              Its one place where I do favor judicial restraint.

              1. I agree Rob. The problem with courts doing such things is court decisions set precedents and laws don’t.

  17. And I get canning the ones for gay men marriage licenses, but wouldn’t it be more appropriate to give lesbians liquor licenses?

    1. No. Moving vans.

  18. For Bo’s benefit: Suck it Orangemen.

    Or Oranges or whatever you are called now.

    #7 and cant even defend your home court against my pathetic Jackets.

    SUCK IT HARD.

    Do we have any ‘cuse alum here?

    1. OT, but I have a much bigger issue with “Orangemen” as a nickname than I do with Indians, Redskins or whatever. Those fucks all but tried to kill the entire catholic population of Ireland.

      1. I have a bigger problem with the Virginia Cavaliers.

      2. I like wearing an orange shirt on St. Patrick’s Day. So far, I’ve never run into.anyone who understood the.joke.

        1. I’m the kind of person that would laugh at it…and then punch you in the back of the head. 🙂

          1. “I swear, I do declare!
            How did you get back there?
            I swear, I do declare!
            How did you get back there?”

        2. I do this also.

          And ditto.

    2. Fun fact: The Syracuse Carrier Dome does not have air conditioning.

      1. Hell, even PNC Park has an ATM.

        1. But that’s my gripe about the ‘burgh. There is one Bank of America ATM in Allegheny County. One! It’s across from the new skyscraper. So there’s that.

  19. I’ve never used a blocking extension here but that might change. Can I block everyone who uses a period in their handle?

  20. Wait?aren’t opponents of marriage equality (and gay rights in general) always crowing about how they’re being oppressed? Are religious conservatives a beleaguered minority (war on Christmas, SB 1062, etc.) or the stalwart voice of a silent majority? I guess it depends on which persona is politically convenient at the time

    Neither.

    Many opponents of same sex marriage, as well as many religious conservatives, see themselves as a beleaguered majority–a fact that polls–real ones, done in the voting booth–seem to bear out.

    Polls in California banned same sex marriage, as they’ve done in nearly every other state where the issue has been placed into the voting booth.

    This is a pretty clear indication of what people are thinking–as opposed to what they’ll say to a voice on a phone or a pollster.

    Support for same sex marriage has been shown, repeatedly, to be a minority opinion–even in the bluest of states. An opinion that is being enforced at the point of a gun–as federal judges overturns the voice of the people as expressed by their vote.

    Or have you missed that?

    To return to the piece I quoted, these people are not adopting a convenient stance that changes with need–they are exactly what they say–a beleaguered majority whose not silent voice is being suppressed by an elite that holds the reins of power and is determined that it will have its way–or else.

  21. And it should always be mentioned on these threads that Tonio supports the idea that homosexuality should be a protected class. He denies this. But at the same time refuses to repudiate the position or articulate what his position is when asked.

    It would be easier if he would just be honest and say what his position is. But his refusal to do that and his outright refusal to repudiate the position tells you exactly what his position is. If he actually didn’t support the inclusion of homosexuality as a protected class, why would he not say so?

    Perhaps he will at some point. And if he ever does, then we can safely say that is no longer his position. But until he does, that is exactly what he believes and all of his posts on this issue should be read in that light.

    There really should only be one rule on a board like this; everyone should when asked honestly state their position on an issue and never resort to “well show me where I said I believe that”. If you are here and posting, you should say what your opinion is if asked. No one owns your opinion but you.

    1. If you are here and posting, you should say what your opinion is if asked.

      Or just refer to previous posting history. No one should have to repeat themselves.

      1. Why not? We all repeat our positions. If someone asks me “what is your opinion on the 2nd Amendment?” I will give it, even though we have discussed it a million times.

        More importantly, Tonio has never once given an answer to the question. There is no previous thread to refer too. All he says is that we should have to prove the negative and show that he doesn’t.

        It incredibly mendacious and he should be called on it on every one of these threads. It is dishonest debate. It is no surprise that the resident leftist trolls Tony and Bo see nothing wrong with it.

        1. Why not?

          Because it bores me. I have a 10+ year posting history here, refer to it. Especially if you are new. Dont make assumptions about my positions.

          1. If you tell me your opinion, I don’t have to make assumptions.

            If I ask you Rob, “What do you think about X?”, you will I have no doubt answer me. You wouldn’t say “go look and find out”. Why would you? You come on here to express and debate your opinions.

            What is going on here is Tonio wants to avoid taking a stand on that issue because he wants to troll the board by pretending he is something he is not. And that should not go without comment.

            1. You wouldn’t say “go look and find out”. Why would you?

              Ive done it multiple times. I did it to Bo when he first showed up in fact, because he made assumptions about issue B based on my comments about issue A.

              Its more do to me being pissed about people who dont lurk and learn the personalities before posting. And that isnt H&R exclusive.

              1. Of course, you wouldn’t do it with everyone. And moreover, you wouldn’t make any effort to hide it.

                Look at this way. If I said to you Rob “but you think Conceal and carry should be universal”, you wouldn’t say “show me where I ever said that”. You would either say “sure I do” or you would say “where the hell did I ever say that? I think CCW should be limited”. But what you wouldn’t do is say “show me where I said that” but then also refuse to confirm or repudiate the position. That is what Tonio is doing. And it is bad faith arguing.

          2. Thank you, robc. Help from an unexpected quarter. And although I suspect you like me no more than I like you I admire your stand on principle on this issue.

            1. And yet, Tonio still won’t give his position.

              You are a liar and argue on here in bad faith tonio. And I am going to make sure that everyone on this board knows it whenever this subject comes up.

            2. Other than you calling my a hypocrite I have no problem with you.

              I dont dislike people just because they are wrong. If I did, I would hate everyone.

              1. I didn’t either Rob until Tonio started lying about his actual positions and playing games like we all were stupid.

                1. Yeah, not sure why Tonio thinks Im siding with him or giving him help.

                  I think he misread my post.

                  1. robc, I don’t think for one minute that you’re siding with me or giving me help. What you are doing is making a stand on principle, a stand which happens to be to my benefit even though your motivation may have been (was probably) completely unrelated to me.

                    You could have stayed silent on the whole matter, as is your right, but you chose to comment.

    2. So what’s your opinion on waterboarding?

      1. It’s a fun alternative to paddles for fraternity hazing.

  22. For the record I refuse to engage John because of his long history of mischaracterizing my positions, and ongoing refusals to produce actual supporting quotes. For that reason I do not respond to him directly.

    So please take anything he says about me with a grain of salt unless it’s backed up with an actual link to a comment I have made here.

    He now seems obsessed with my opinions, and enraged by my refusal to engage him. So be it.

    1. I am not obsessed. It just bugs you are a liar. You don’t have to respond. All you have to do is say “No I don’t agree with homosexuality being made a protected class”

      You refuse to do that because you don’t believe that. But at the same time you lack the integrity to argue your position. That is against the good faith of the board. You are entitled to your opinion. Hell, it may be the right one. I would like to hear why you think it is.

      But you are not entitled to play games and pretend you believe something you don’t. That makes you liar and yes, I will continue to call you out on it.

      If you don’t like that, state your opinion and I will stop asking for it.

    2. Fuck John. He’s really making up rules about validating previously held opinions? John? Why don’t we all take a field trip to 2004 and just see how libertarian John was.

      1. Tony,

        What is your opinion of the incorporation of homosexuals as a protected class?

        I am pretty sure you are a yes on that. And good for you. As deranged and crazy as you are, you least are honest enough to give your opinion and not hide it.

        Tonio in contrast is not. You being a troll yourself no doubt feel some sympathy with Tonio’s concern trolling and mendacity. But it still is just that.

        1. I see no reason, if we’re going to have protected classes, that LGBT people shouldn’t be among them. Not including them would seem to be counterintuitive at best, since, you know, at least racial minorities can get married in every state.

          1. I figured you thought that. And good for you for saying so. There is nothing wrong with stating your opinion. No one has to agree with it.

            But what is wrong is hiding what your opinion is. And that is what Tonio does on this issue.

  23. “And 35 25 percent think that at least a quarter of people are homosexual”

    FTFY

  24. “Though Ingraham cites it as the prerogative of religious conservatives and Mitt Romney 2012 supporters, epistemic closure (or “confirmation bias,” or the “false consensus effect,” or whatever you want to call it) infects people of all ideological stripes.”

    Like Gillespie and Welch conflating an increase in independent voters into a “libertarian moment”?

  25. Can SoCons please just lay down and die already? You lose. There is nothing left for you.

    1. I am sure the Left will stop after they have killed the SOCONS. They won’t go after anyone else.

      But fuck them. You hate them so clearly that means you should never stand up for their rights.

      Don’t worry, thanks to people like you, they might just lay down and die. Them and a lot of other people. Good luck with that.

    2. People you disagree with have the bad taste to exist.

      Poor, poor pitiful you.

    3. “Can SoCons please just lay down and die already? You lose. There is nothing left for you.” This statement made me think of a photograph going around of fingernail scratches on the inside wall of a gas chamber.

  26. I’ll bite because I’m genuinely curious at this point. Tonio, do you support antidiscrimination laws for public accommodations (as those are usually understood, i.e., including hotels, restaurants, etc.)? Do you support the extension of those laws to include protections based on sexual orientation-related issues?

  27. Other than straight white males who are below a certain age and free of mental and physical disabilities, is there anyone who shouldn’t be in a protected class?

    Aren’t we pretty much to that point? Wouldn’t it just be easier to identify who isn’t entitled to special protections, and leave it at that?

    1. You just did identify the one group not in need of protection. Because all the straight white guys I know are doing extremely well. Other than, way more suicides, addiction, violence committed against them, and less opportunities, etc. But, other than that, they’re doing great.

  28. The fuck is going on in here?

    I’m going back to the cock food truck thread.

  29. Where is Tulpa? There aren’t enough viewpoints represented in this thread,

  30. When you think God is on your side you most likely believe in God. Then you must realize that God is on their side too. But this marriage thing is weird. 70% of some minority kids are born to single moms! no need to marry. When we were hippies we did not believe in ” that piece of paper for a commitment”. But the government’s involvement with entitlements and benefits have caused a need for committed partners to enter into a marriage contract for the protection and financial safety of the parties. . . . And yet. There was all that ” palimony” stuff 2 decades ago. But the marriage thing beats the hell out the adoption route – no divorce option !!! Hey ! This is America, there are no problems. Only solutions. So carry on.

  31. Wow,
    It’d be nice if your piece had some premise other than an ad hominem attack on those who believe GOD’s word.
    Since the media tells us constantly that 70% + of Americans believe in GOD it’s not even slightly unreasonable for someone to deduce that they would also AGREE with GOD’s word is it?
    They are incorrect perhaps but so what?
    When did it start to be some sign of delusion or moral failing to expect the best from your peers?
    As Christians we are called to trust and hope and believe and give the benefit of the doubt. It was IN FACT these basic and immutable Judeo Christian values that our laws were based on that make it so one must be innocent until proved guilty.

    And it seems to me your article typifies the abuse and derision you imply is false or overblown. Have you seen any articles by any major Christian voices that have spoken this way about those who take the other side? No, I didn’t think so.

    1. PART TWO
      You are a typical “liberal” (cough-gag) hypiocrite who is taking pot shots at those you feel are beneath you.

      Those who believe GOD’s word and despite persecution from small minded bigots like you hold to it as HE said to.

      This group you so despise are the spiritual followers of those who started and manned every single great civil rights movement in US history. Though their names and detailed have been written out of the history books for over 70 yrs any well read person knows this stuff.
      That’s right, slavery, child labor, the vote for women…all the way up to civil rights.

      These are the same group who make up most of the medics that have run into battle to save our soldiers since the revolution.

      These are the ones who stood in classrooms and taught us that lying is evil…until you fools made them stop and start teaching situation ethics.

      These are still today the ones who take in and help free those who want out of the perversion addiction. And YEAH! it is exactly that. It has exactly the same markers and exactly the same destructive nature only much worse than booze. WE are the ones who tell the truth about the real documented deadly health risks of perversion. We don’t cover them up from fear of the outrage of the liars who promote it. Because it is we who really love those lost in this sin, or booze, or drugs, or adultery, etc etc
      ‘reason’ to laugh at you.

      1. -PART THREE-

        According to the very best studies only about 5 to 10% of those who call themselves Christians actually are. And here is one really great way to tell if someone is: Do they say that perversion is sin?
        Because real Christians stand by what GOD has said about it…they’ll never change. And why would they.
        HE is right The results of indulging are just exactly what HE says they are.
        Those who want to be set free are all the time all over the world. If this was genetic (a complete absurdity scientifically) then they could not be set free…yet they are!
        Not only that but the almost incalculable mountain of evidence that GOD’s word is correct is too much for anyone with any respect for truth and logic to ignore.
        But you “libs” have never really ascribed to the whole ‘truth & logic” thing anyway. It’s why you ranks are shot through with very well educated pseudo-intellectuals

        You don’t have the honor or courage to read the other side and trest your beliefs.
        It’s just like Whoopie G said when she was being trounced by a conservative on a political point; she said, “I don’t care what the facts are I know how I feel!” LOL That tells all those who care for truth all they need to know.

        For anyone who has any doubts about what I have said pick up a copy of;
        “MORE EVIDENCE THAT DEMANDS A VERDICT” by Josh McDowell

        And to you mzzzz brown…grow up and make at least some feeble attempt to honor the name of this site instead of giving everyone a

        1. ‘reason’ to laugh at you….

  32. According to Ms. Brown, no one supports traditional marriage, they are “opponents of marriage equality”. All societies through all of recorded history were “opponents of marriage equality”, I guess. Worse, they are delusional, in Ms. Brown’s words.

    She also implies that “opponents…think they have God on their side”. In other words, there can be no societal or cultural or civil reason to oppose same sex marriages, it can only be misguided religious conviction, which on its face has no merit.

    And I have to question Ms. Brown’s assertions of support. Large majorities support civil unions, but actual marriage has less support.

    And I wonder how many support the latest gay tactic: using lawsuits to impose huge fines on anyone declining to participate in gay ceremonies? Same sex marriage is so much more satisfying if the couple can find someone who does not support it, and force them to participate in the ceremony.

    This website is named “reason.com”. This shameless plugging the writer’s viewpoint and denigrating all who disagree does not seem much like “reason” to me.

  33. My experience with religious types is they are very different amongst their fellow church goers than they are one on one with a non member. They talk the party line faithfully at church, but privately are way more open. The group has a uniform, so to speak, and it includes certain tropes that must be openly avowed to assure membership in the group. It is not a mistake for people to think their church members are more fundamental than in fact they are, as around them they act more rigid than they really are. They have been misled by their own dogma.

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