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California: toilet of America - Bush - Cheney 2004
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California: toilet of America
Breaking: California Supreme Court legalizes gay marriage;
Update: Opinion-skimming analysis added!

posted at 1:11 pm on May 15, 2008 by Allahpundit

An election-year bombshell, just across the wires. Rove, you magnificent bastard. Stand by for updates.

Update: Here’s the opinion (http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S147999.PDF). How does 172 pages sound?

Update: The AP story is thin on specifics (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080515/ap_on_re_us/gay_marriage_4) since it’ll take awhile to digest the holding. Read this useful bullet-point background (http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2008/05/15/pre-gaming-the-california-same-sex-marriage-ruling/?mod=WSJBlog) from the Journal to get up to speed on the legal posture. Note that six of the seven justices on the court are Republicans. Will the ruling stick?

“Pro-family” organizations have submitted more than 1.1 million signatures for an initiative that would amend the state Constitution to outlaw same-sex marriage. If at least 694,354 signatures are found to be valid, the measure would go on the November ballot and, if approved by voters, would override any court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage.

Proposition 22, the California ballot initiative that defined marriage in the state as between one man and one woman (even if the marriage was entered into in another state that allows same-sex marriage), passed in 2000 by a margin of 1.7 million votes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proposition_22).

Update: Sounds like a major win (http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/05/15/BAGAVNC5K.DTL):
Gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry in California, the state Supreme Court said today in a historic ruling that could be repudiated by the voters in November.
In a 4-3 decision, the justices said the state’s ban on same-sex marriage violates the “fundamental constitutional right to form a family relationship.” The ruling is likely to flood county courthouses with applications from couples newly eligible to marry when the decision takes effect in 30 days.

The ruling set off a celebration at San Francisco City Hall.

Update: A quick skim reveals that the opinion’s fairly straightforward. They start out by noting that California’s different from other states that have dealt with this insofar as it already has a robust domestic partnership law. All this is about, really, is whether gays should be allowed to “marry” the way straights do or whether they’re stuck with those partnership agreements that leave them married in effect but not in name. Conservatives like partnership schemes and/or civil unions as an alternative to gay marriage, but I’ve always thought that argument’s self-defeating since it leaves you with no substantive reason for drawing any distinction in the first place. Yes, (some) conservatives seem to be saying, gays can go ahead and have civil unions that grant them all the benefits married couples have — but for god’s sake, don’t let them call themselves “married.” To which a court can only reply, “Why not?” The right’s strategy, in other words, has been to concede 99 yards and then stand on the one-yard line and say “no further,” but that’s not how discrimination jurisprudence works. If you’re going to discriminate you need a good reason, and depending upon whom you’re discriminating against, you may need a very, very good reason.

That’s actually the key ruling here: The court holds on page 95 that because sexual orientation is (1) immutable, (2) unrelated to one’s ability to function in society, and (3) a target of prejudice, it should be treated as a “suspect classification” for purposes of the state constitution’s equal protection clause. Once it’s deemed a suspect classification then the state needs a very compelling reason to justify discriminating on the basis of it — and since, as I say, it’s already conceded those 99 yards, there’s no such reason to be had. (If you want to bore yourself with the vagaries of equal protection jurisprudence, read this old post [http://hotair.com/archives/2006/10/25/breaking-nj-supreme-court-upholds-same-sex-unions/] about New Jersey’s gay marriage ruling.) All they’re doing is denying gays the label of marriage to preserve a sense of stigma, which is almost a paradigm case of what equal protection is meant to prevent. I have no problem with the ruling as long as other states aren’t compelled to recognize Cali marriages per full faith and credit, which, needless to say, is the battleground on which this decision’s going to be fought in the presidential race. Taking the federalist approach and letting each state decide for itself is an easy call for Maverick; what about the Prince of Peace?
http://hotair.com/archives/2008/05/15/breaking-california-supreme-court-legalizes-gay-marriage/

VIRAL NOTES: So, naturally, a good friend of mine posts this on her MySpace:

Proud to be a Californian today!
Body: Today, California's highest court ruled that denying same-sex couples the right to marry is unconstitutional, granting loving, committed gay and lesbian couples the dignity and support their relationships have so long been denied.

All I can say is, KICK ASS!!!!!!!!


I'm not happy about this, at all. California, well-known as the toilet of the United States, and origin of nearly everything bad that happens in America (not to mention co-author of America's bad international image) has shown what it thinks of it's voting citizens. After soundly defeating a measure to legalize sodomic marriage, not long ago, the state's supreme court completely ignores the democratic process, and legislates from the bench. The judicial activists of the supreme courts have become some of the biggest enemies of democracy and freedom in this nation, and this is just the latest example of that.
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Comments
docwho88 From: docwho88 Date: May 17th, 2008 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
"In a 4-3 decision, the justices said the state’s ban on same-sex marriage violates the “fundamental constitutional right to form a family relationship.”"

This is a major step forward for civil rights. Something that any true Republican should be loudly in favor of. We must remember that a majority opinion is not always the right one, even if it should only be overruled carefully -- if the state and federal governments hadn't taken strong action, we would still be dealing with segregation, jim crow... maybe slavery? Does that a majority opinion supported those things make it wrong that they were overturned?
virus_x From: virus_x Date: May 17th, 2008 10:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Please spare me the crap about your views of what is, and isn't, a "...true Republican...". If you were so interested in the advancement of civil rights, you wouldn't be crowing about the will of the people being thwarted by activist courts. I happen to side with the majority opinion, not because I'm a Republican, but because I'm a Christian, something I am loudly in favor of, even though activist courts, and their supporters (like yourself) clearly are not. You are not much more than the average revisionist historian. Jim Crow laws were the works of an activist court. The Dread Scott decision? The works of an activist court. And slavery wasn't stopped by the courts: it was stopped by crushing rebellious terrorists of the South through military force. Majority opinions did not support Dread Scott, majority opinions did not support Jim Crow, and majority opinions did not support slavery, not even amongst the Founding Fathers. Get your facts straight, before trying to lecture me on giving gays special privledge. If you were such a "...true Republican...", instead of what radio talk show host and attorney Mark Levin calls a "...repubican...", you'd actually care about states' rights, federalization, and the limitation of the powers of the supreme courts through the system of checks and balances.
docwho88 From: docwho88 Date: May 18th, 2008 02:01 am (UTC) (Link)
If you were so interested in the advancement of civil rights, you wouldn't be crowing about the will of the people being thwarted by activist courts.

What does that have to do with civil rights?


Jim Crow laws were the works of an activist court. The Dread Scott decision? The works of an activist court.

fine -- but your example shows that neither activist courts, nor the will of the majority, are always right. Didn't we already know this, just in general?


majority opinions did not support Jim Crow

I'll take your word for the sake of argument, but I'd still like to see some proof other than your say-so.


Get your facts straight, before trying to lecture me on giving gays special privledge.

What special "privledge" are you referring to? The right to protect themselves under the same laws that have protected straight couples for hundreds of years?


If you were such a "...true Republican...", [snip] you'd actually care about states' rights

What part of supporting the recent decision in california is against states' rights? If the state's constitution permits their supreme court to overrule a public referrendum, then that's the way it is. I don't presume to know more than they do about what checks and balances they do, or should, have in place regarding their supreme court and its rulings.
virus_x From: virus_x Date: May 18th, 2008 06:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
If you can't see what a free and democratic society's citizen's right to vote has to do with civil rights, then there's not much I can tell you about it, that you'd be capable of understanding. If you can't understand that it's wrong to have the free will of the people taken away by the government, then you'll just have to continue to think wrongly, because there's nothing that can be done, that I know of, that can change your mind.

Your instistance that the will of the majority is wrong is simply based on your own refusal to see the possibility that you, and your compatriots, could possibly be wrong. It's just that simple. Your "if it feels good, do it" politicking has gotten the world exactly in the pickle of a moral morass it's continuing to sink deeper into, to this very day.

"I'll take your word for the sake of argument, but I'd still like to see some proof other than your say-so." Talk to a lawyer. Call the Mark Levin show.

"What special "privledge" are you referring to? The right to protect themselves under the same laws that have protected straight couples for hundreds of years?" They already enjoy equal protection under the law. There is no need for hate crime legislation, because the things they seek to criminalize are already criminal. Granting them the power to marry is not a protection; it's a priviledge. God created marriage, whether you choose to believe that, or not, and when you grant people things on the basis of who they choose to have sex with, that's granting undeserved privledge. Plain-and-simple.

"What part of supporting the recent decision in california is against states' rights?" The part where you think that the government should nullify the will of the people, in order to set national precedent. The part where you think that activist courts are good, as long as they work in your favor, and render illegal, unethical and outright illegal decisions that work out for your, and yours. That's what.
docwho88 From: docwho88 Date: May 19th, 2008 09:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
If you can't see what a free and democratic society's citizen's right to vote has to do with civil rights, then there's not much I can tell you about it, that you'd be capable of understanding. If you can't understand that it's wrong to have the free will of the people taken away by the government, then you'll just have to continue to think wrongly, because there's nothing that can be done, that I know of, that can change your mind.

As far as I understand it, supreme courts (state and federal) are for SPECIFICALLY that -- to balance out things they feel to be unjust. That is why the justices are put in place. Don't get all up in arms about it being a violation of peoples' rights -- if it weren't designed that way, it wouldn't work that way. Funny thing, it does.


Your "if it feels good, do it" politicking has gotten the world exactly in the pickle of a moral morass it's continuing to sink deeper into, to this very day.

That's a strawman attack with so many things wrong with it I'm losing count.
when did i say "if it feels good, do it"? how does that have ANYTHING to do with the right of responsible consenting adults to enter into a legally binding marriage?


They already enjoy equal protection under the law. There is no need for hate crime legislation, because the things they seek to criminalize are already criminal.

when did i say ANYTHING about "hate crime legislation"? when I said "protection under the law" i was referring to the protections that are granted exclusively to married couples. I'm sure you're not so stupid as to not be able to think of any of these.


Granting them the power to marry is not a protection;

you're severely wrong. let me enumerate some:
1) power of attourney
2) inheritance rights
3) custody rights
4) tax and insurance benefits


God created marriage,

A) that's your opinion; unfortunately for you, one does not need to subscribe to a judeo-christian religion to be a citizen of the country, nor are the country's laws based thereupon.
B) he didn't create the STATE INSTITUTION of marriage. If your church doesn't want to marry homosexuals, then by all means do not invite them. It is an altogether different issue when a couple wishes to be legally bound in marriage at least in the state's eyes. and guess what -- it's THEIR decision (they probably won't bother your church anyway).


and when you grant people things on the basis of who they choose to have sex with, that's granting undeserved privledge. Plain-and-simple.

A) it has nothing to do with "who they choose to have sex with". just by saying that you're undermining all mature, committed homosexual couples who wish to be able to not live as second-class citizens, refused all the rights I've mentioned above.
B) if you really think it's "plain-and-simple", i don't know what to say. I hope you wake up and see your own narrowmindedness someday.
commodorejoplin From: commodorejoplin Date: May 18th, 2008 02:53 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm struggling with this because, as a Christian I don't want to send homosexuals the wrong message. I want homosexuals to understand that we do care about them. And God loves them completely. However, I do want it to be understood that I believe homosexuality is a sin. It undermines God's sovereign act when He created the family and marriage. I think it is important that the homosexual community understand that God does judge this as a sin. And the punishment for sin is death. But, He does offer forgiveness and love. God hates every sin, but loves every sinner.

So, please do not misunderstand my opposition as something hateful, but it is because my heart aches for this nation and the people that are rejecting God's sovereignty. But, God will not tolerate it much longer. He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because the cities would not yield to Him. Therefore, I have to say that I am disappointed with California's decision. But, what hurts so much is to hear people praising the decision. It seems that America is screaming to suffer Sodom and Gomorrah's fate.

Now, I don't say this from my pious high horse. I realize that my sins and lusts have disgusted God just as much as homosexuality. But, I realize that my sins are wrong and I have asked forgiveness for that. And homosexuals, God will offer you that forgiveness too. He is extremely merciful.
virus_x From: virus_x Date: May 18th, 2008 05:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
There is no ambiguity, for me. I completely agree with you. Wrong is being heralded as right, and I can't be seen to waffle on that, no matter how people might think of me. All homosexuals can see in Jesus Christ is a person that tells them that they're doing something wrong, and that He's nothing more than someone trying to interfere in their fun. They see Christians as people worried about imaginary crimes, and who have an imaginary friend. Until they (the majority of whom seem to see themselves as intellectuals and enlightened) can get past that blinder, they don't stand a chance. It's hard to watch, knowing what will happen to them in the Hereafter, but I also know that, as it was with me, my path is my own choice. Theirs, is theirs. There are only 2 unforgiveable sins; accepting the mark, and not asking for forgiveness. No sin that goes unconfessed can be forgiven.
ellajanes From: ellajanes Date: May 19th, 2008 02:15 am (UTC) (Link)
You said that perfectly.
I agree.
I know people who were raised by homosexual couples.
They are really screwed up.

Ella
virus_x From: virus_x Date: May 19th, 2008 04:59 am (UTC) (Link)
That's another thing I'm worried about. Homosexuals raising children. With people like Melissa Etheridge and others using their status to create a bully pulpit for themselves, they're working their hardest to drag America into a state of moral relativism. "If it's good for you, then it's good." Or, the "it's all good" mentality. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is no way, possible, that I can see homosexuals raising children as being a good thing. Sure, many are really good people, on a humanistic level, but homosexuality is un-Godly, and a sign of moral bankruptcy. Moral bankruptcy, and the acceptance of wrong as right, are the last things we want passed down to remaining generations. In California, it's already been made unlawful for teachers to make referances to parents in a fashion that defaults to man-woman relationships (http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=58130). For all the protestations of homosexuals that we are trying to criminalize their abnormal sexual behavior, it's funny how, more-and-more, the words, actions and thoughts of heterosexuals are seeing criminalization and litigation, not the other way around. I have yet to hear of a case where refering to a gay relationship was criminalized, or even criticized, in a public school. Unfortunately, because of my theological convictions, and my theologically-guided sense of right and wrong, I cannot condone gay marriage, just as I can't condone activist courts that are bound and determine to force those types of agendas down the throats of anyone that dares to resist.
docwho88 From: docwho88 Date: May 19th, 2008 09:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
I know people who were raised by homosexual couples.
They are really screwed up.


So you are saying that there are no "screwed up" people that come from heterosexual parents?
Or are you saying that *every* child raised by homosexual parenting will be "screwed up"?

Please prove to me (and show your work) that even a fractionally higher percentage of children raised by homosexuals are "screwed up".

Also please explain how allowing responsible homosexual couples to commit to a legal marriage (to protect each other under the law with regards to inheritance, power of attourney, and parenting issues) negatively affects the rate at which "screwed up" kids are produced.
athena_lew From: athena_lew Date: June 17th, 2008 03:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Not a single religion or moral philosophical system -- East or West -- since antiquity ever defined marriage as between members of the same sex.

That is one reason the argument that this decision is the same as courts undoing legal bans on marriages between races is false. No major religion -- not Judaism, not Christianity, not Islam, not Buddhism -- ever banned interracial marriage. Some religions have banned marriages with members of other religions. But since these religions allowed anyone of any race to convert, i.e., become a member of that religion, the race or ethnicity of individuals never mattered with regard to marriage. American bans on interracial marriages were not supported by any major religious or moral system; those bans were immoral aberrations, no matter how many religious individuals may have supported them. Justices who overthrew bans on interracial marriages, therefore, had virtually every moral and religious value system since ancient times on their side. But justices who overthrow the ban on same-sex marriage have nothing other their hubris and their notions of compassion on their side.

Since the secular age began, the notion that one should look to religion -- or to any past wisdom -- for one's values has died. Thus, the modern attempts to undo the Judeo-Christian value system as the basis of America's values, and to disparage the Founders as essentially morally flawed individuals (They allowed slavery, didn't they?). The modern secular liberal knows that he is not only morally superior to conservatives; he is morally superior to virtually everyone who ever lived before him.
athena_lew From: athena_lew Date: June 17th, 2008 03:49 pm (UTC) (Link)

Which leads to a third reason such a sea change could be so cavalierly imposed by four individuals -- the modern supplanting of wisdom with compassion as the supreme guide in forming society's values and laws. Just as for religious fundamentalists, "the Bible says" ends discussion, for liberal fundamentalists, "compassion says" ends discussion.

If this verdict stands, society as we have known it will change. The California Supreme Court and its millions of supporters are playing with fire. And it will eventually burn future generations in ways we can only begin to imagine.

Outside of the privacy of their homes, young girls will be discouraged from imagining one day marrying their prince charming -- to do so would be declared "heterosexist," morally equivalent to racist. Rather, they will be told to imagine a prince or a princess. Schoolbooks will not be allowed to describe marriage in male-female ways alone. Little girls will be asked by other girls and by teachers if they want one day to marry a man or a woman.

The sexual confusion that same-sex marriage will create among young people is not fully measurable. Suffice it to say that, contrary to the sexual know-nothings who believe that sexual orientation is fixed from birth and permanent, the fact is that sexual orientation is more of a continuum that ranges from exclusive heterosexuality to exclusive homosexuality. Much of humanity -- especially females -- can enjoy homosexual sex. It is up to society to channel polymorphous human sexuality into an exclusively heterosexual direction -- until now, accomplished through marriage. But that of course is "heterosexism," a bigoted preference for man-woman erotic love, and therefore to be extirpated from society.

Any advocacy of man-woman marriage alone will be regarded morally as hate speech, and shortly thereafter it will be deemed so in law.

Companies that advertise engagement rings will have to show a man putting a ring on a man's finger -- if they show only women fingers, they will be boycotted just as a company having racist ads would be now.

Films that only show man-woman married couples will be regarded as antisocial and as morally irresponsible as films that show people smoking have become.

Traditional Jews and Christians -- i.e. those who believe in a divine scripture -- will be marginalized. Already Catholic groups in Massachusetts have abandoned adoption work since they will only allow a child to be adopted by a married couple as the Bible defines it -- a man and a woman.

Anyone who advocates marriage between a man and a woman will be morally regarded the same as racist. And soon it will be a hate crime.

Indeed -- and this is the ultimate goal of many of the same-sex marriage activists -- the terms "male" and "female," "man" and "woman" will gradually lose their significance. They already are. On the intellectual and cultural left, "male" and "female" are deemed social constructs that have little meaning. That is why same-sex marriage advocates argue that children have no need for both a mother and a father -- the sexes are interchangeable. Whatever a father can do a second mother can do. Whatever a mother can do, a second father can do. Genitalia are the only real differences between the sexes, and even they can be switched at will.

And what will happen after divorce -- which presumably will occur at the same rates as heterosexual divorce? A boy raised by two lesbian mothers who divorce and remarry will then have four mothers and no father.

We have entered something beyond Huxley's "Brave New World." All thanks to the hubris of four individuals. But such hubris never goes unanswered. Our children and their children will pay the price.
athena_lew From: athena_lew Date: June 17th, 2008 03:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
Holy crap! And the mainstream media covers it up.
docwho88 From: docwho88 Date: May 19th, 2008 09:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
One thing a rational citizen must realize is that this country was founded *VERY SPECIFICALLY* on a foundation of not forcing citizens to subscribe to any specific, or *any*, religious value system. This forces us to decide what is moral and what is not moral in ways other than referring to an ancient text of debatable relevance and accuracy. Note that I have nothing against christianity, spirituality, or religion in general, but people often fail to remember that there are people with belief systems other than their own -- including christians (in the church I grew up in, among many others) who don't believe homosexuality is a sin at all.

But putting that aside -- it is important to remember that this issue focuses on the right of a responsible, adult couple, to tie themselves together in a legally-recognized way, to protect themselves under the law. Unlike other boneheaded interpretations seen in this thread, i do NOT mean "protection" as in from physical attack or hate crimes, but more specifically, the ability to share custody of kids, grant power of attourney, and many other rights afforded exclusively to married couples.

What right do certain christians have to say that California's decision is wrong just because it is their religious opinion that homosexuality is a sin? I would remind you that it's also a sin (punishable by death) to be the victim of rape and not yell for help. If your church believes it is a sin, then don't invite them to your church -- but that should have NO bearing WHATSOEVER on the secular laws that govern peoples' rights and livelihoods.
virus_x From: virus_x Date: May 20th, 2008 04:23 am (UTC) (Link)
With all your snipes about "...true..." Republican beliefs (which you know nothing about, not being Republican), and insinuations that it's the "...rational..." people that think like you, and the irrational that don't, your further comments against Christianity show that you lack the very fundamental knowledge and beliefs of what is right and what is wrong, so, therefore, you come in and question us like Anakin when he lost his moral compass, accusing Obi-Wan of being evil. We have no common frame of reference, so, therefore, there can be no common ground between us (that, and your sniping is getting tiresome). You can't convice us with your talk of what you think a "...true..." Republican is, you can't browbeat us with your elucidation of what a "...rational citizen..." is supposed to think like, in your philosophy. We don't have any common frame, so discussion has become pointless.
athena_lew From: athena_lew Date: June 17th, 2008 03:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Frankly, I'm a Californian and I'm very disgusted by the state supreme court decision. It is an act of judicial tyranny. How can 4 justices override the will of 4 million voters? The Frisco city mayor is a MORON I tells ya. He's so arrogant and has no ounce of respect for those are disagree with him. He thinks he has every right to twist and change the law to his own self-interests regardless of what everybody else thinks.
Sometimes I wish Southern California and Northern California can be divided into two states. Sacramento practicially runs the state of California. Do you know how runs Sacramento? The politicians from San Francisco. The countries worst politicians such as Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Boxer all come from that town. We all know who they are. They're all commies!
It's no wonder why illegal immigrants won't stop coming to California. Because our state gives them benefits. It's no wonder why our taxes our so high. It's because we have too many social programs. It's no wonder why California is one of the most expensive states to ever live in. The majority of Californians don't even know that all they need to do is to just STOP VOTING DEMOCRAT!
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