May 10, 2012
How Predictable, Obama is for Gay Marriage
So President Obama now says that he is "personally" for gay marriage. We are supposed to think he is oh so very brave.
The reality is that just about the least brave thing you can do in America today is be in favor of gay marriage. Do so and the liberal media outlets (which is to say, most all media outlets) say wonderful things about you on their editorial pages and treat you favorably in their news section. TV personalities throw softball questions at you. The Hollywood crowd invites you to their exclusive parties and the rich and famous wine and dine you.
Come out against gay marriage, on the other hand, and all of the above call you a "bigot," intolerant, extremist, and racist and sexist for boot. The media treat you like a throwback to the 19th century, and if you get on their TV shows you'll get insults and hardball questions. The Hollywood crowd wants nothing to do with you.
Part of me, though, doesn't blame Obama for
lying waffling dissembling, er "changing his mind" about the issue. After all, liberal politicians are caught in a terrible bind.
On the one hand, their working class, black, and Hispanic constituencies are almost entirely against it, the blacks and Hispanics especially so. Religious black leaders in particular are uncompromising on the issue.
On the other side, their supporters in Hollywood, academia, and the media are unanimously for it. Many upper-middle class guilt-ridden white yuppies are in favor of gay marriage to.
So how do liberal politicians resolve the dilemma?
They lie. They tell their their working class, black, and Hispanic constituencies that they are against it, but then they appoint liberal judges hoping that they'll do their dirty work for them by inventing a right to gay marriage in much the same way Harry Blackmun invented a right to abortion in Roe v Wade. This way, in the wake of a suitable court decision, they can look at their working class, black, and Hispanic constituencies and say "I didn't do it," then giving a "wink wink" to the Hollywood, academia, media, and liberal yuppie types.
Obama now pretends that his position on the issue has been "evolving," and if you believe that I've got a bridge to sell you. Like almost all other liberal Democrats, he's been in favor of gay marriage from day one; he just found it politically expedient to pretend like he was against it until now.
But the economy is bad, the deficit continues to skyrocket, and his signature health care program is wildly unpopular, so he can't run on his record. Instead, we have a series of invented issues such as a "war on women," the "Buffett rule," and so on. This latest foray into the politics of marriage is just another attempt to shore up his liberal base.
The editors of National Review have it right:
The Devolution of Marriage
May 10, 2012 4:00 A.M.
By The Editors
President Obama is getting credit, even from some critics, for finally being honest and consistent in his position on same-sex marriage now that he has announced his support for it. But he is still being neither honest nor consistent. And his dishonesty is not merely a matter of pretending that he has truly changed his mind about marriage, rather than about the politics of marriage.
His claim that he believes that states should decide marriage policy is also impossible to credit. One of the purposes of the federal Defense of Marriage Act was to block this scenario: A same-sex couple that resides in a state that does not recognize same-sex unions as marriages goes to a state that does so recognize them, gets married there, returns home, sues in federal court to make the home state recognize the "marriage," and prevails. Obama has long favored the repeal of the act. He does not truly want states to be able to continue to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
And really, why should he, given his premises? Does anyone doubt that he believes that the marriage laws of most states are not just wrong but unjust? His spokesmen have repeatedly said as much when registering his opposition to states' attempts to undo judicial decisions to impose same-sex marriage. If these marriage laws amount to unjust discrimination against certain persons, then it follows that states have no right to enforce them. If Obama's appointees to the Supreme Court join a majority that requires all states to recognize same-sex marriages, does anyone think that he will do anything but applaud? There is no reason to believe that Obama's long-advertised "evolution" on marriage is now complete.
All people, whatever their sexual orientation, have equal dignity, worth, and basic rights, by virtue of being human beings. We have previously explained why we believe that this premise does not entail the conclusion that the marriage laws should be changed (and defended our views from critics). For now, we will merely repeat one point: The only good reason to have marriage laws in the first place -- to have the state recognize a class of relationships called "marriage" out of all the possible strong bonds that adults can form -- is to link erotic desire to the upbringing of the children it can produce.
We have already gone too far, in both law and culture, in weakening the link between marriage and procreation. To break it altogether would make the institution of marriage unintelligible. What possible governmental interest is there in encouraging long-term commitments with a sexual element, just as such? What reason is there to exclude from recognition caring long-term relationships without such an element? (In one of the editorials mentioned above we mention the case of two brothers who raise a child together following a family tragedy; other hypotheticals are easy to devise.)
Many people who support same-sex marriage sincerely believe that they are merely expanding an institution to a class of people who have been excluded from it rather than redefining it. But this view is simply mistaken. We will not make our society more civilized by detaching one of our central institutions from its civilizing task.
Posted by Tom at May 10, 2012 8:00 PM
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When the Supreme Court strikes down all state laws against gay marriage, just as they did with interracial marriage in 1967, you will see how wrong you are on this issue. There is nothing more central to being an American, than equal protection under the law for ALL citizens. Of all people, you, as a self-proclaimed conservative, should understand this. Your religious views do not get to trump our Constitution.
Posted by: RW Nutjob (aka "Barry) at May 10, 2012 9:50 PM
That's funny, nowhere in the post do I mention religion, yet here along comes this nutjob to accuse me of doing just that. Next time do you think maybe he'll read the post before commenting?
Posted by: The Redhunter at May 12, 2012 9:18 PM
Having tuned into "Meet the Press" in which gay marriage was the subject of the the round able discussion, I decided to visit after a long hiatus, to determine whether one of my favorite conservatives had commented on the issue.
I am now compelled to advise that the National Review is wrong and to the extent you agree w/ it, I urge you reconsider your position.
I will confess that the evolution of Anglo-American Jurisprudence is not one of my fortes although it is difficult to study and practice law w/o learning something of it.
"...the state recognize a class of relationships called "marriage" out of all the possible strong bonds that adults can form -- is to link erotic desire to the upbringing of the children it can produce."
This proposition is fundamentally incorrect and at best is merely a byproduct of marriage.
What then is marriage? Marriage, in its essence, historically and currently, is an expression of the creation and protection of property rights. The evolution of Anglo-American Jurisprudence can be analyzed in terms of the evolution of the protection and creation of property rights.
The concept of marriage for romantic reasons is relatively new from an historical perspective.
If you consider marriage as a method of protecting property interests as opposed to an institution which is an aegis to protect children which are the result of "erotic desire," then moral objections to gay marriage seem to dissipate structurally.
Yes, it is legally possible , to a certain extent, to protect property rights by means of other types of contracts (NB. What is marriage but a contract sanctified by God or recognized by the state?) but other rights that attach by marriage cannot be so protected. Ones that spring to mind are those rights protected by or created by statute for which individuals may not contract, i.e. disabled widow's or widower's benefits under the SSA.
Yes, DOMA was enacted to prevent the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the Constitution to be applied to same sex marriages. Was DOMA a bad idea inasmuch as marriage has always been the subject of regulation by individual states? In my opinion, it probably was. Do we need a Constitutional amendment on the issue of gay marriage? Absolutely not. Do we need a Supreme Court decision like Loving v. Virginia? Probably although I doubt whether the current court would issue such a decision.
This is not an uncomplicated issue and deserves more space than I am devoting to it here. If marriage is considered w/ respect to its primary original intent, that which predated the wedding at Cana, which is the creation and protection of property rights, then objections to same sex marriage--as opposed to objections to same sex relationships--must fail.
Posted by: TLGK at May 13, 2012 12:37 PM
Thanks for stopping by and for your thoughtful comment.
If letting a few gay couples do their thing and live in peace was all there was to it, it wouldn't really be very controversial and would probably be the law in most states, if not the law of the land.
But as it is 31 states have law or constitutional amendments defining marriage as between "one man and one woman" for a reason; because they know that the issue of gay marriage is about a lot of things, but marriage isn't one of them.
No, this is an attempt by the radical left to remake our entire society in their image. Think of it more like what the Jacobins tried to to in Revolutionary France than Herbert Croly's progressive vision for America. The "gay lobby" (or whatever you want to call it) is already hard at work doing everything they can to make it basically illegal to criticize their lifestyle. If gay marriage is instituted, it will be in fact a de facto impossibility to criticize them.
Don't believe me? Any church that refuses to marry gays will lose their tax exempt status. Caterers and photographers who refuse their services will be sued under (possibly new) civil rights laws and at any rate will lose their business licenses. If your kid says gay marriage isn't right at school suspension or expulsion will be the result. On and on. This isn't about marriage, it's about society.
And society is a fragile thing. Because we haven't really had a cataclysm here in America of the sort like the French/Russian/Iranian revolution, I don't think many of us really get the damage that can be done. Perhaps if Edward Gibbon's Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire was required reading instead of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring(or whatever is trendy nowadays)... but I dream.
Posted by: The Redhunter at May 14, 2012 8:24 PM
If not religious-based, then what are your objections to loving, committed, gay relationships? And just because you feel that the legalization of gay marriage would strengthen the radical left's agenda, hardly presents a strong argument against TLGK's reasoned, truly conservative argument in favor of it.
Posted by: RW Nutjob at May 24, 2012 12:14 AM
I never said that religion wasn't a big part of why I'm against gay marriage. I was just slamming you for commenting before reading the post. And given that most of the non-religious reasons are mentioned in the National Review editorial, I still don't think you've read the post. More, the post was not about whether gay marriage is right or wrong, it was about the politics of the matter.
Posted by: Tom the Redhunter at May 27, 2012 5:46 PM
If you and all the rest of the religious zealots and bigots would drop your objections to gay marriage, we wouldn't be needing to discuss the politics of it, and Obama couldn't use it as a political tool.
Posted by: RW Nutjob at May 29, 2012 10:07 PM
Keep your lousy religious views out of other people's private lives! Seems to consistently be a problem for you.
Posted by: RW Nutjob at May 31, 2012 6:47 AM
Religion is the basis of societal organization, culture, and law. This is the case worldwide. In some cases, as with our Judeo-Christian heritage, it has worked to our benefit. The West has the best societal organization, culture, and law precisely because of our Judeo-Christian heritage, not in spite of it. You seem to have no understanding of history and how things came to be how they are now. Your comment, therefore, makes no sense.
Posted by: The Redhunter at May 31, 2012 8:39 PM
And who gets to decide when religious influences on our system of laws are beneficial or not? Which religions should we allow to influence our system of laws? If Islam somehow becomes the predominant religion in our country, should we then adopt Sharia law, because you think our laws should be religious based? I'm not religious, and I don't want your religion, or anyone else's, intruding on my Constitutional rights.
Posted by: RW Nutbag at May 31, 2012 8:56 PM
Christianity is the very basis for those very Constitutional rights you love. As you said yourself, if we were primarily influenced by Islam we may well live under Sharia.
Posted by: The Redhunter at May 31, 2012 9:45 PM
DOMA declared unconstitutional by federal appeals court, yesterday. One step closer to equal rights for all Americans. Another loss for religious zealots trying to take over our country.
Posted by: RW NutbagRWN at June 1, 2012 8:23 AM
Too bad,, what a waste of a website.
Posted by: GS at December 2, 2012 2:15 AM