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A Polk County judge on Thursday struck down Iowa's law banning gay marriage.

The ruling by Judge Robert Hanson concluded that the state's prohibition on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional and he ordered Polk County Recorder Julie Haggerty to issue marriage licenses to several gay couples.

This will be appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court, and who knows where it'll go from there. But this is Iowa. Just a bit over four months from the caucuses.

This is now an issue in the presidential campaign.

As Todd over at MyDD says, the GOP will trip over itself blasting "activist judges" blah blah blah. But on our side, how will they react?

Our candidates should embrace it. They'll be too chickenshit to do so, but they should. Without reservation.

In this political climate, Republicans will get little salience on the issue -- which is dying anyway. Remember that Red Arizona, last year, was the first state to reject a ballot initiative banning gay marriage. With people losing their homes, and our troops losing their lives in Iraq, people have more important things on their mind than whether two people who love each other should be allowed to marry or not.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:22 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I wouldnt be surprised (5+ / 0-)

    if theyre doing this now so it WILL be an issue in the primaries.

  •  The Iowa Supreme Court (17+ / 0-)

    is fairly liberal.  I have a good feeling that this ruling will be upheld.

    aka "The Man" Holding you down since 1973

    by clonecone on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:21:06 PM PDT

  •  In Iowa? (17+ / 0-)

    Wow. Maybe America isn't devolving as rapidly as I thought. And yes, the D's should absolutely embrace this decision, forcing R's to explain why they don't support equal rights for all citizens.

  •  Eh (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    David Boyle, Dallasdoc, pat208, Leo in NJ

    At least we won't need to worry about it being utilized on the ballot in alot of states. That ship has already sailed. In 2006, Virginia headed back to the stone age by rejecting equality for any non church sanctioned marriage. As I said, in the other thread on this, I'm almost ashamed of my state for this.

    •  We can always counter (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Smallbottle, jct, Neon Mama, jimmyboyo

      with our own minimum-wage initiatives.  Ballot proposals raising the minimum wage energized Democratic voting blocs in the states where they were tried last year . At the ballot, their success rate was nothing short of phenomenal.  What's even better is that many of the states that govern with ballot initiatives are in the West — the very region where Democrats stand to gain in 14 months.  

    •  What? You can't get married at City Hall (0+ / 0-)

      in Virginia if you're an atheist?  Maybe I'm misunderstanding something; what did you mean by  "rejecting equality for any non church sanctioned marriage"? I haven't heard anything about this.

      •  Gay marriage and common law (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Neon Mama

        marriages were struck down by the new law that basically restricts what marriages the Commonwealth recognizes and believe deserves protections under the law. November was a melancholy period for me. We got Webb in office but the marriage amendment passed by a pretty wide margin, proving we have quite a way to go in Virginia.

  •  politics (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Is the judge elected or appointed?  If elected, what party was he originally in?  And if appointed, by whom?

  •  Surely this can't be the same Julie... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elfling, groggy, hornrimsylvia

    County Recorder Julie Haggerty

    ... Haggerty who starred in "Airplane"?

    Although, come to think of it, Gopher from the Love Boat (Fred Grandy) represented an Iowa district in the US House for 8 years.

    How many cars have you taken off the road this year?
    Join the Kos group at One Billion Bulbs

    by pat208 on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:24:01 PM PDT

  •  This should be interesting. (5+ / 0-)

    I love Iowa (my home state)!  Des Moines (Polk County) has definitely been trending more liberal since I left 20 some years ago, but the rural parts of the state?  Eh, not so much.

  •  I'd be fascinated to hear about the shift... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    markw, vox humana

    in thinking from kos.

    Some lame blogs are reporting Kos wrote this way back in 1993

    Military Right
    Published on: Monday, January 25, 1993

    It's truly disturbing how much ado has been made over Bill Clinton's campaign promise to lift the ban on homosexuals from the U.S. military. It's ironic how it has taken a president who has never served in the military to make a promise that affects the military in such a negative manner.

    Those who have served in the military, such as myself, understand the demands and pressures of military life are incompatible with allowing integration with homosexuals. I'm neither socially conservative or prejudiced, and neither is liberal columnist Mike Royko, Gen. Colin Powell, and influential liberal Democrats Sam Nunn and Les Aspin, all who've come out against lifting the ban.

    Under military circumstances, as much has to be done as possible to focus the unit's mission and keep disciplinary problems to a minimum. Worrying about whether the known homosexual sleeping next to you is watching as you change your underwear may seem trivial as you read this, but to the soldier who's short-tempered after three weeks in the field and four hours of daily sleep, it becomes a matter of great importance to his pride and sensibilities. And in any case, there aren't many people who would change clothes in a group of co-workers if members of the opposite sex were in the same room watching. There is something inherently uncomfortable about it.

    Such fears would go a long way in disrupting efficiency and morale in a unit.




    I'm writing this not to be confrontational, but simply to get an idea in the evolution of someone's thinking. It's always enlightening to find out how a person thinks.

  •  I've been saying all along... (10+ / 0-)

    ...that I'm waiting to see heroic leadership from one of our candidates before jumping on anyone's bandwagon. Here's a great opportunity to show it.

    •  It is a gamble (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geotpf, wiscmass, jimmyboyo

      and probably one worth taking for Richardson, Biden or Dodd.

      Could say Dodd, with the IAFF endorsement and a switch to support equal marriage rights, become a player in Iowa?

      •  Yeah, it's a gamble, but... (0+ / 0-)'s neither heroic nor presidential to play to the polls.

        •  Well there are two parts (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          to the equation.

          Which candidates deep down support equal marriage rights, but are unwilling to buck public opinion?

          Which candidates have no particular opinion, but are willing to be politically opportunistic enough to take advantage of the situation (for the second tier, supporting equal marriage might make their campaign viable)

          My feeling is on the first part, Obama probably supports gay marriage, Edwards probably honestly opposes it, and the rest probably don't care either way and take a position based on their political situation.
          I am actually surprised that Obama hasn't come out in favor, given that is church is in favor.

          •  Not Obama's church (0+ / 0-)

            His denomination (United Church of Christ) is in favor, but the UCC General Synod cannot dictate policy to individual congregations. As I understand it, the congregation he belongs to (Trinity UCC) is in opposition (or at least their pastor is).

            I do like conducting hearings in an actual hearing room -- John Conyers

            by ebohlman on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 09:54:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  One must always keep in mind (0+ / 0-)

        who the "electorate" consists of in the Iowa caucuses.  It's a very small piece of the pie of registered Democrats.  

  •  This is awesome. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FlyingToaster, pat208, Bodean, jct, lvillelass

    Here's hoping it sticks. Here's hoping that people in Iowa and elsewhere will realize that a spouse-to-be's character is more important than gender for their neighbors, sons, and daughters.

    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

    by elfling on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:28:53 PM PDT

  •  A cheer for Iowa!!! (7+ / 0-)

    Gay marriage for some, tiny American flags for others!

    •  What we'll be needing, (0+ / 0-)

      are fire extinguishers and nose plugs. I'm sure that PhredPhuckingPhelps is loading up the Fire and Brimstone Express at this very minute, getting ready for another road trip to Iowa.

      Although, there are so many soldier's funerals to cover, his posse is spread pretty thin these days.

  •  Disgusting! (0+ / 0-)

    As a gay man I am appalled that these gay couples are selfish enough to setback the movement for their individual rights. We need to change hearts and minds and legislation, not through the courts--we all know how unpopular that is. I want marriage equality more than anyone but these rulings are hurtful to the movement, just look at 2004. And the fact that this is happening just months a way from the caucus in Iowa is terrifying. Can't you people process that court mandated policies--albeit important and moral--are politically unpopular! This is the last thing we need right now.

    •  I'm fine with the court (19+ / 0-)

      upholding the bill of rights of the constitution of my home state.

      aka "The Man" Holding you down since 1973

      by clonecone on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:41:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  civil rights are way too important to be voted on (15+ / 0-)

      That is why the courts decide questions of constitutional civil rights. If it was voted on there would still be Jim Crow laws in the south and mixed marraige would still be illegal.

      "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

      by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:43:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ok (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        But then how do you define "Civil Rights." You are all gung-ho to say that gay marriage is an unalienable right that should be enforced by the courts, but what happens when a court decides that the "right to life" in the Constitution applies to fetuses? Then abortion is banned everywhere. Mabye one is right and one isn't, but isn't that really just one judge's opinion. Our entire structure of government shouldn't be at the emrcy of unelected officials who can ban abortion, and legalize and ban(because what Judges givith they can take away) gay marriage at will?

        The reason I am a process liberal is because throwing out the process only works in the short-run, because in the long-run it will bite you in the ass.

        •  Straw man. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          buddabelly, jimmyboyo, lvillelass

          Larry Craig called Bill Clinton a "nasty, bad, naughty boy." Which came first--the pot or the kettle?

          by homogenius on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:49:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  How? (0+ / 0-)

            How is it a straw man? Look at who we have on the Supreme Court right now. If anything, the last session should be evidence that constitutional interpretation doesn't just move in one direction, and as long as Alito and Roberts are going to be running the court, I want some of my rights to be more strongly entrenched than being one Bush appointee away from oblivion.

            Furthermore, the ruling I just described on abortion is not legally unjustifiable even if it would be insanely unpopular. It is possible to make a logically consistent argument that a fetus is a "person", and a large number of people seemingly believe that. All it would take is five of them on the court.

            •  What right to life in the constitution (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Amendment XIV
              Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

              This has to be what you are talking about I guess and as long as the state isn't requiring the abortion then there is no constitutional protection.

              "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

              by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:58:40 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  And the bold italic states clearly why gay (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                superhero fan, jimmyboyo, lvillelass

                marriage is allowed and to ban it is unconstitutional.

                "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:01:38 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Is Sexual orientation subject to equal protection (0+ / 0-)

                  In Lawrence the majority avoided listed sexual orientation as a protected class with the exception of O'Connor. This then paved the way for Florida's ban on gay adoption to be upheld by the fifth circuit.

                  I mean the problem with this issue is you either presume the ends or you don't. If marriage(the term not the legal construct)is between a man a woman, than no discrimination is going on. If you believe it is between two people who love each other, than discrimination is going on. This is really why it shouldn't be in a court. The judges either buys it or doesn't based on his personal beliefs. Complex arguments really don't enter into it./

                  •  It's pretty straight forward and the reason that (0+ / 0-)

                    anti-miscegenation and Jim Crow laws are unconstitutional. If it's unconstitutional to ban marriage between black and white as long as the government is in the marriage business it's unconstitutional to ban gay marriage.

                    nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

                    "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                    by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:15:51 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Assumes that racial discrimnation is the same (0+ / 0-)

                      as discrimination based on sexual orientation and the supreme court rejected that in Lawrence with the exception of O'Connor. It is not a protected class legally which means laws discriminating are held to a much less strict standard.

                      •  Read the clause any person equal rights under law (0+ / 0-)

                        see deseg.laws. The fundies will try to twist it any way they can.

                        The wording is the wording.

                        Unless you can prove a homosexual isn't a person.

                        "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                        by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:21:08 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Not all discrimnation the same (0+ / 0-)

                          It is not illegal to have a height requirement for a job, or to ban lepers from a private swimming pool. Nor is illegal to have a mandatory retirement age. The issue is legally whether or not sexual orientation qualfies as the same as race, and the supreme court has consistently rejected it. They have furthermore allowed states to have separate age of consent laws for homosexual and heterosexual activity. I think this whole mess would have been avoided if Kennedy sided with O'Connor and Lawrence was decided on equal protection(if sodomy is so bad why do 9 of 13 states only ban it for homosexuals and not for heterosexuals) rather than due process(sodomy laws violate privacy). It would have advanced gay rights much farther, making bans on adoption, as well as most state constitutional amendments void, and wouldn't have raised questions about incest or bestiality laws.

                          •  The examples you give are not of the government (0+ / 0-)

                            there are different standards for the government and private parties. The sodomy laws are dead even if still on the books after the Texas case and possibly the age of consent laws haven't been challenged recently. The courts don't just wipe out laws on the books a challenge must be brought by someone with standing.

                            Marriage inequality will be ended by the courts just like every other form of discrimination was.

                            "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                            by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:41:44 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Discrimination (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:

                            The issue is legally whether or not sexual orientation qualfies as the same as race, and the supreme court has consistently rejected it.

                            On the contrary, the Supreme Court has not rejected it. The last time the Court made a ruling on the applicability of the equal protection clause to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation was 1996. It was also the first time they ever tackled the issue directly. The Lawrence v Texas case in 2003 was decided on due process grounds, not equal protection (though O'Connor's concurrence speaks to the Equal Protection Clause issues).

                            There are three levels of scrutiny carved out by the Court under the Equal Protection Clause: strict scrutiny, heightened scrutiny and rational basis. In the 1996 case, Romer v Evans, the court declined to determine what the appropriate level of scrutiny is for discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, finding Colorado's Amendment 2 unconstitutional failing to meet the lowest standard of review, rational basis.  Since the law couldn't even meet that low burden, they found it unnecessary to determine if a higher level of scrutiny is appropriate for such discrimination. No where does the court say, as it has in other cases on other bases of discrimination, X is the standard of review. That determination has been left for some future Court to decide and keeps with the "O'Connor Court's" philosophy of judicial minimalism.

                            The Court ruled on Lawrence based on due process to get rid of Bowers v Hardwick pure and simple. Bowers despite being a due process case itself and expressly disavowing any basis on the Equal Protection Clause or the 9th Amendment (see FN 8 of Bowers), had become a malignant cancer upon Equal Protection jurisprudence. A court wishing the rule against gays on the basis of equal protection merely had to make the statement "It is permissible to discriminate against homosexual since homosexual acts can be made illegal. Bowers v Hardwick." No analysis or thought required. Romer was supposed to balance that out, but it didn't. An Appeals Court ruled the opposite way of Romer in a nearly identical case out of Cincinnati shortly after Romer was handed down. he justices declined to take the case being so soon after Romer but I'm sure it so infuriated the justices in the majority for the Appeals Court, stacked with ultra conservatives, to give a big "FUCK YOU" to the to Court. They bided their time 'til Lawrence came around and decided that instead of the gloved soft tap the Court gave in Romer, they would put on the brass knuckles and completely remove Bowers from the equation. Without Bowers, anti-gay discrimination would have to stand on its own and be analyzed for what it is. Bigots could no longer hide behind the out-of-touch ruling by the Court in 1986.

                            Not deciding Lawrence on Equal Protection grounds also lets there be more discussion on the role of Equal Protection in the marriage cases, even though like Lawrence, the Court would be on much more solid ground in a marriage case deciding the matter on Due Process rather than Equal Protection. Marriage is a fundamental right. PERIOD. Strict Scrutiny applies when there is an abridgment of a fundamental right. PERIOD. Doesn't matter is it is an interracial couple, a deadbeat dad or a prisoner being denied the right, strict scrutiny applies. The same is true here.

                            Moreover, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation isn't happening per se with same-sex marriage bans. To paraphrase on of the concurring in part, dissenting in part Justices on the Vermont Supreme Court in the Baker v Vermont case from 1999, a man is denied the right to man not because one or both are gay, but because his would be partner is a man. Similarly a woman is denied the right to marry a woman because her would be partner is a woman, not because one or both are lesbian.  Bans on marriage by same-sex couples discriminate on the basis of sex, not sexual orientation and the level of scrutiny required for discrimination on the basis of sex has been well established over the years.

              •  Ah (0+ / 0-)

                But if the fetus is a person, and is being killed, then it is being "deprived of life without due process of law".

                I've said I don't agree with this, but there are people who do, and they could get on a court someday. And then they could enforce their own vision of what fundamental rights are. I would rather not start a precedent of the courts stretching the language because it could easily be abused.

                •  Nor shall any state. (0+ / 0-)

                  Last I checked no state requires abortion which is the only way that clause would apply.

                  There is no "Right to Life" in the constitution, only a prohibition on the state taking life without due process.

                  "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                  by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:05:12 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Isn't it possible (0+ / 0-)

                    there could be an argument that legal abortion makes the state an accessory to murder and therefore qualifies.

                    •  Nope. (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      buddabelly, superhero fan, lvillelass

                      The only agreement for citizenship is birth or naturalization.  The only agreement between religions is birth (some view conception, some view "quickening", some view birth).

                      You can't impose one religion's standards on the others.  So you have to take the one where everyone agrees, which is live birth.  Period.

                      •  Dosen't this contradict Roe? (0+ / 0-)

                        Which spoke of the competing interests of the mother and child, and allowed stringent restrictions in the third trimester because of the child's interest?

                        •  Not precisely... (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:

                          ... viability if born is the issue.

                          In Massachusetts, the state law has stringent rules starting at week 24 (5 weeks before the third trimester) because if the fetus is viable, it could be born.  Right then.  And, though in bad shape, might well live.  At which point you've gone from "potential citizen" to "once it's outside the womb, it IS a citizen".  And protecting that citizen is in the state's interest.

                          This has been an issue because of accuracy of prenatal diagnostic testing; if you find out at week 25 that your fetus is microcephalic or massively deformed, you can still get an abortion up here; I'm not sure how it works anywhere else.  

                          I've been through this with the genetic testing; we made it through the week 11 and 18 screenings, and week 29 showed nothing interesting other than gender (finally).  

                          I always wonder if those states trying to force a conception rule are going to issue social security numbers for those fetuses, and if they are going to jail women who miscarry or whose babies are stillborn.

                          Birth is the only tangible rule on which everyone of us can agree.  Well, except for maybe the Subgenii.

                •  One could argue a fetus is a person... (0+ / 0-)

                  but a fetus is not a citizen until born and therefore does not receive equal protection as established in Amendment XIV above.

                  Amendment XIV
                  Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.

              •  It does say 'born' n/t (0+ / 0-)
        •  Funny. (6+ / 0-)

          The courts are a separate and equal branch of gov't.  Ruling on the constitutionality of cases is their fucking job.

          aka "The Man" Holding you down since 1973

          by clonecone on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:50:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  There is a real question as to what that means (0+ / 0-)

            The courts are required to rule on the constitutionality of issues, not on what is right or fair. Martha Sosman's dissent in MA made a point that the majority talked a lot about research showing how good glbt families were for kids, and the social effect of legalization, but that those issues while important, were for the legislature to consider. The issue before the court was not whether Gay marriage was an issue of equality, whether it was fair, or whether it would be a good idea, but whether it was constitutional to not have it.

            Too many courts on this issue and others have embraced their role as that of referees and guardians rather than as mediators. An that role is not necessary.

          •  True (0+ / 0-)

            but Im talking to the gay rights movement--> court rulings are short term victories, we need long standing  legislation to do that. I don't want to be equal bc the judge says so--I want to be equal because the people said so!

            •  Right sare not legislated they just are. (0+ / 0-)

              "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

              by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:22:23 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  regardless, (0+ / 0-)

                removing the political consequences of this 'moral victory' is ignorant.

                •  How about standing up and cheering instead (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  of cowering in fear of "what some will say"

                  "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                  by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:29:16 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  bc its not a victory (0+ / 0-)

                    its divisive and short lived. How many times is this going to happen--Judge strikes down, SC overrules Judge, So Cons get motivated in crucial purple state Iowa...thats exactly what I wanted. Awesome Im so excited!

                    •  keep cowering , we'll keep fighting. (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      AUBoy2007, davidkc, wayoutinthestix

                      "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                      by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:42:48 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Stop calling me a coward (0+ / 0-)

                        "Well keep fighting?" Ok William Wallace you take your fight to the court

                        True equality is when people support me, not when judges tell them to! Its an illusion if you think court mandated marriage equality is the be all end all--next you are going to tell me that Brown v Board ended segregation!

                        •  Brown v board of education Anti miscegenation law (0+ / 0-)

                          Jim crow. How many were won on a popular vote?

                          "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                          by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:52:35 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  i just said that... (0+ / 0-)

                            rulings change policy, not minds--true equality is when minds are changed--wow i can get married in iowa--but does that mean Iowans wont snark when I hold my husbands hand when we walk down the street? No.

                            Courts can't solve equality--and politically they are disastrous. This is not a victory in any sense-- but if you need to celebrate that the fight is won--go ahead, but your'e delusional.

                          •  I'm not delusional and if you think that anti gay (0+ / 0-)

                            bias will go away even if it was voted in then you're the delusional one. The KKK still exists remember.

                            This is a victory for the state and federal constitution. And judging from the link to the state constitution, this ruling will stand.

                            "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                            by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:02:15 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Again all of you are ignoring the political... (0+ / 0-)

                            ramifications of this ruling! And that IS delusional. Iowa is not Vermont, it's a crucial swing state that now will probably have a perfectly motivated base of right wingers.

                          •  Thats where the cowering comes to play (0+ / 0-)

                            was Rosa Parks timingright wasDr. King's timing right or did they fight for acause anyway. No matter the outcome the wingnuts will say the same things and vote in the same percentages.

                            Bush won Iowa 50-49 with a mere 10,000 vote advantage. With the polling the way it is in this country do you really think that this is going to make up for the last 8 years. 10k votes.


                            "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                            by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:16:22 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  We have them on the run, (0+ / 0-)

                            no need to motivate them now....

                            marriage equality will come! I am just more patient than some of you.

                          •  Really, just shut up now (0+ / 0-)

                            We've heard enough from the Fifth Column.

                          •  All fo you are so goddamn rude! (0+ / 0-)

                            I have a differing opinion and all of you have said I don't know jack shit, I'm a coward and now I have to shut up! You are all ridiculous and should be ashamed, I'm a Proud Democrat goddamn it! Respect my opinion and/ or politely disagree but grow up!

                          •  never said you were a coward said you were (0+ / 0-)

                            cowering, very different, one is a state of being one is an action

                            "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

                            by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:59:10 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  having painstakingly read through all of this, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:

                            i'd like to "politely disagree."
                            it seems to me that your point in this dispute is that a ruling such as that in Polk Co., while a good short-term accomplishment, has not real long-term benefits because minds weren't changed. there can't be equality if people are forced to comply. correct me if i'm wrong.
                            where i think others disagree with you--and my opinion--is that, like any other struggle for rights in our country's past, it's taken small steps such as this ruling to get the ball rolling to further, stronger legislation. when that policy is in place, it has, does, and will always take time to change minds, and not all minds can be changed.
                            the reference to the KKK was, i think, a way to express that last point. there's no way to eliminate prejudice without literally controlling minds and hearts, and so we must work, and appreciate the strides made, towards the attainable goal.

                          •  I agree in the sense that this will get the ball (0+ / 0-)

                            rolling on stronger legislation...for the other side. Gay rights groups admitted court rulings were losing battles. Again OF COURSE I WANT MARRIAGE EQUALITY, but legislative success and ballot referendums RESONATE with the people. Lets not confuse a legal success with a moral one. Some of these posters are bat shit insane and downright ignorant and some one of the same ideological side argues a victory is not a total victory

                        •  Are you for real? (0+ / 0-)

                          Have you ever been to the Southern US? There's still lots of bigotry, the KKK is still alive and well, and the NeoNazis are really getting into grafitti. You know what? I thank the Gods every damn day for Brown v Board. You force kids into schools together and more often than not you get tolerance, if not people running down the street holding hands.

                          You can't make people change what they believe, which is essentially what you're asking for. You want the Christians and the anti-gay people to realize that they're being hateful and unreasonable? Maybe, MAYBE one in a hundred will in their lifetime.

                          My father knows I'm gay and he still votes for gay-marriage bans and believes homosexuality is a sin. They tell you, on all of those queer support sites, to come out to your family because it will change how they feel about gays. It doesn't. They "love you anyway" or say they'll "pray for you", but they rarely every accept it.

                          Having legal rights is the best most of us can ever hope for. You want the homophobes to come around and have a hugfest? Not gonna happen in our lifetimes.

            •  Actually.... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              If it is upheld by the SC, it has the potential of being a more longer term victory as it would require a state constitutional amendment to overturn and not just repealing a law.

              "No government has the right to tell its citizens whom to love. The only queer people are those who don't love anybody." - Rita Mae Brown (-5.38, -6.77)

              by AUBoy2007 on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:53:37 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks, buddabelly (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I've tried saying this twice and can't get it out as
        well as you did.  ;>)

        When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. - Jonathan Swift

        by lvillelass on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 07:06:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Any time, Rights are Rights and all y'all (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          would do the same for me.  

          I believe in the entire Constitution not parts here and there. It's the only thing that has kept us going these 230 some years and our only hope for a free future.

          Though it is under some strain from both sides right now, hope we can change that

          "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

          by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 07:21:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, those selfish people! (9+ / 0-)

      Those nasty, bad, naughty people! Shame on them for demanding their rights.

      So who died and made you queen?

      These couples filed suit to claim that Iowa's DOMA was unconstitutional under the state constitution. That's their right as citizens and residents of Iowa.

      We didn't hold a vote in LGBT communities and decide whether suits like this should go forward. Even if we had, they still have the right to challenge a law they believe to be unconstitutional. Whether this was good timing or not, it's their right.

      Larry Craig called Bill Clinton a "nasty, bad, naughty boy." Which came first--the pot or the kettle?

      by homogenius on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:48:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  rulings like this (5+ / 0-)

      will definitely begin to change the hearts and minds of democrats whose opposition to marriage equality has simply been an automatic, unexamined reaction. dems will start coming around in big numbers very soon. the party will again lead the way for the country (not in 2008, granted. but maybe by 2012? 2016?). then these important rulings will stand as great precedent for additional legislative solutions.

    •  pure nonsense (11+ / 0-)

      that's the same 'logic' the Log Cabin Republicans use.  And it's gotten them NOWHERE.  If you want to sit around waiting for someone to politely take care of you, then sit and wait.  But don't snipe at those of us doing all the heavy lifting for you...

      No one conquers who doesn't fight.

      by grasshopper on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:52:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If we waited for majority support... (10+ / 0-)

      ... I'm not sure blacks and women would have voting rights yet. An important purpose of courts and constitutions is to protect the minority from the majority and do what's right. It will absolutely take the courts to legalize gay marriage. Once the "average" American sees that their life isn't falling apart a few years hence, mainstream acceptance will follow.

      If you wait for popular opinion and legislatures to move the ball forward, it will never happen.

    •  Quatsch! (6+ / 0-)

      Look, as a resident of the only state currently enforcing marriage equality, the courts are the only way to overturn BAD EFFING LAWS.  

      The usual marriage equality suspects (Article8, MassResistance, MFI) failed to get their referendum through the legislative process this year.  If their DOMA equivalent ever does make it to the ballot here in MA, it will lose.

      It's not selfish to use the tools ya got to get the result you want.  To overturn a DOMA law, you need to start at the courts.

      Use our data.  The sky hasn't fallen.  The economy (here) isn't in any worse shape.  The divorce rate remains unchanged.  No church has been forced to marry anyone they didn't want to.

    •  I don't see anything hurtful about this at all (4+ / 0-)

      And I certainly would never call a foot forward for equal rights "disgusting."  I am also a gay man, and I don't see how victories in the court hurt the push for equal marriage rights.  It's not the only thing we need, but every little bit helps.  

    •  Court rulings (4+ / 0-)

      can — and often do — educate the public on important issues.  

    •  read the Iowa constitution (9+ / 0-)

      This isn't really an activist judge (in my opinion) just one who carefully looked at the state constitution and decided that the law against same-sex marriages was not constitutional. I have to say I agree after rereading the Iowa constitution. The reasoning would be the same if they tried to pass a law against interracial marriages.

      The key section is section 6

      All laws of a general nature shall have a uniform operation; the General Assembly shall not  grant to any citizen, or class of citizens, privileges or immunities, which, upon the same terms shall not equally belong to all citizens.

      Baring a constitutional amendment I would expect the supreme court to confirm this ruling. Of course I wouldn't put it past the legislature to try for an amendment.

    •  Here in Mass. this is now such a (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      non issue.  Sure do wish the whole country would stop
      by and talk to us.  Even the people here who were opposed before the law went into effect don't seem to
      have much of anything to say now.  I repeat, this is
      a non issue.
      Well, unless you're the Mittster and trying like a
      bastard to distance yourself from this liberal hell-

      When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. - Jonathan Swift

      by lvillelass on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:57:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mixed Feelings (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IhateBush, Geotpf

    I was really hoping that the next state that would legalize same-sex marriage would be New York, California, or New Jersey, and that they would do it through the political process so as to avoid the judicial activism label.

    As for the decision, I'm not so sure it will be sustained. Only one higher court in the entire country has sustained this argument, and that was after three lower courts had thrown the case out. Even NY and Washington have thrown it out. Its not so much a liberal/conservative issue as it is a separation of powers. Martha Sosman, the leading dissenter in MA was one of the strongest liberals on the court and headed planned parenthood before her appointment, so having liberals on the court is no guarantee it will be sustained. Furthermore, the likely outcome will be an effort to push an amendment through the legislature, which may be blocked in the Senate, but will nevertheless become the legislative issue in the 2008 elections, which despite progress on the issue, is probably no good for Iowa Democrats.

    That said good luck to gays and lesbians in Iowa.

  •  Come on, John Edwards (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Norwegian Chef, jimmyboyo

    You've led so many times in this campaign. Here's a good opportunity for you to make the switch! You're so close already, just embrace it. Stop sitting on the wrong side of history!

    Not gonna happen, I know. But I sure would like to see some flip-flops on this issue from our top three candidates.

  •  The Republicans love this kind of stuff (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It allows them to go to their base voters and explain the looming "threat" of homosexuals getting married, moving in next door, and "flaunting" their "deviant" lifestyle.

    Politically, and I am loath to say it, this sort of thing is beans on their table.

    Other than Kucinich it's hard for me to imagine one of the leading Dem's embracing this issue.  The SF Bay Area and NYC are not representative of the rest of the country, on this issue,      yet.

    "We will now proceed to construct the socialist order."

    by 7November on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:45:46 PM PDT

    •  yes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I agree they will use it as much as possible, but this issue just isn't resonating the way it used to.  The Republicans have moved to their next strategy, "The Mexican menace".  As discussed in one of the front page diaries, much of the antagonism against Senator Craig is actually based on bigotry and illegal aliens.  (With his restroom capers being a handy weapon to use against him)

      No one conquers who doesn't fight.

      by grasshopper on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:57:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Iowa City (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geotpf, Smallbottle, mcfly, jct, operculum

      is #10 on the list of U.S. metro areas with the highest concentration of lesbians.  Source.

      Gay marriage is a real issue in Iowa.  This isn't just an NYC/SF thing.

      aka "The Man" Holding you down since 1973

      by clonecone on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:00:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  From the Dead Milkmen a couple decades ago..... (0+ / 0-)

        You know what Stuart? I like you. You're not like the other people here
        in the trailer park. Oh no, don't get me wrong, they're fine people, good
        Americans. But they're content to sit back, maybe watch a little Mork and
        Mindy on channel 57. Maybe kick back a cool Coors 16-ouncer. They're
        good fine people, Stuart. But they don't know what the queers are doing
        to the soil.

        You know that Johnny Werzner kid - the kid who delivers papers in the
        neighborhood? He's a fine kid. Some of the neighbors say he smokes
        crack, but I don't believe it. Anyway, for his 10th birthday, all he
        wanted was a burrow owl, just like his old man. "Dad, get me a burrow
        owl. I'll never ask for anything else as long as I live". So the guy
        breaks down and buys him a burrow owl. Anyway at 10:30 the other night I
        go out into my yard and there's the Werzner kid looking up in the tree. I
        said, "What are you looking for?" He said, "I'm looking for my burrow
        owl." I say, "Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick! Everybody knows that a
        burrow owl lives in a hole in the ground! Why the hell do you think they
        call it a burrow owl, anyway?!" Now Stuart, do you think a kid like that
        is gonna know what the queers are doing to the soil?

        I first became aware of this, about 10 years ago, the summer my oldest boy
        Bill Jr. died. You know that carnival that comes to town every year?
        Well this year it came with a ride called the Mixer. The man said "Keep
        your head and arms inside the mixer at all times." But Bill Jr., he was a
        daredevil, just like his old man. He was leaning out saying, "Hey
        everybody! Look at me, look at me!" POW! He was decapitated. They found
        his head over by the snowcone concession. A few days after that, I open
        up the mail and there's a pamphlet in there, from Pueblo, Colorado. And
        it's addressed to Bill Jr. And it's entitled, "Do you know what the
        queers are doing to our soil?"

        Now Stuart, if you look at the soil around any large U.S. city with a big
        underground homosexual population - Des Moines, Iowa, perfect example.
        Look at the soil around Des Moines, Stuart. You can't build on it, you
        can't grow anything in it. The government says it's due to poor farming.
        But I know what's really going on, Stuart. I know it's the queers.
        They're in it with the aliens. They're building landing strips for gay
        Martians. I swear to God.

        You know what Stuart, I like you. You're not like the other people, here in the trailer park

        "We will now proceed to construct the socialist order."

        by 7November on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:04:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That ol dog (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      won't hunt.  I mean, they tried it in 2006.  How'd that work out for them?

    •  I can't bargain away another's civil rights for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AUBoy2007, R Rhino from CT4

      political expediancy.  

  •  'Gay marriage' should just be called 'marriage.' (8+ / 0-)

    Otherwise, the marriage between a man and a woman should be called 'heterosexual marriage.'

    You'd think that society would evolve, but alas...


  •  I'm for a more "radical" solution. (7+ / 0-)

    I think the government should only recognize civil unions between consenting adults, and leave the marriage issue to the church. If the word "marriage" really does conjure religious connotations, the government should stay out of it. As far as I know, several churches perform gay marriages, so I don't think there'd be a problem.

    •  And what if atheists want to get married? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Debby, polaris2, skidrow, Leo in NJ

      You'd be erasing second class status for one group by creating it for another.  Not a good trade-off.

      And besides, that plays right into the whole idea that gays are trying to "redefine" marriage for everyone else.  In the long run it is much better (and easier) to lift gay people up to equal marriage status than it would be to convince the public that their marriages are to be downgraded for the benefit of a minority group.

      That's just one step forward, one step back.

      •  So much of this argument is about semantics. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        buddabelly, jamesia

        Should we call the legal relationship between 2 people (which is all government is concerned about) "marriage" for all couples, or call it "civil unions" for everybody and reserve "marriage" for the religious ceremony? That's really all we're fighting about.

        I think that in the future people will use the word "married" for all couples regardless of gender makeup, so we might as well get used to it. It is still the right of churches to refuse to perform any ceremony they don't want to (not government's business), but you can get legally married elsewhere.

        If civil unions for gay couples are legally identical to straight couples', and everybody calls it marriage, then it is marriage. But we need to get the equality first.

        •  So, are you saying that my marriage (0+ / 0-)

          by a JP, not in a church, should not be considered
          marriage, but a civil union???  Damn my husband might
          have something to say about that!  We are husband and
          wife, a married couple, not a civil union.  So, I ask
          you, why should our friends male/male and female/female
          not be allow that same option?  Sorry, just not getting
          the point...

          When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. - Jonathan Swift

          by lvillelass on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 07:51:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  it's still considered a "marriage" (0+ / 0-)

            within the context of the church.  Outside the church, in the legal realm, everyone will have "civil unions".  Just a difference in terminology.

            •  Not in agreement (0+ / 0-)

              Not willing to give up the word to satisfy some religious dogma.  You all can have the religious
              union, I'm keeping my legal marriage - thank you
              very much.

              When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. - Jonathan Swift

              by lvillelass on Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 09:08:54 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  As a convenience, (5+ / 0-)

        state governments, in defining a contractual relationship, chose the same word used by religions to define the spiritual aspect of the relationship.  Only the state document has legal power;  the church documents carry power only within the denominations. The co-mingling of these different connotations of the word "marriage" has partly contributed to the confusion and discomfort that some liberals feel toward "marriage" equality.  

        What jamesia suggested, if I understood it correctly, was to separate, in law, the legal connotations of the word from the religious;  the easiest way to do that would be to create a new legal term for the old contractual relationship that distinguishes those elements from the religious connotations...and cede the old familiar word to the churches to administer.  

        In that environment, your atheist won't care about marriage because it will be a purely religious function.  The contract an atheist receives from the state — the one with the legal power — will say "License of Civil Union", just as it will for everyone else.

        •  That would be unique among political compromises (0+ / 0-)

          in that it would actually be more difficult to implement than absolute victory would be.  It is much, much easier to explain to the public the difference between civil and religious marriage and how one cannot affect the other (because you're right about one thing, there still is a lot of confusion) than it would be to explain your idea to them.

          If you don't believe me, go ahead.  Take your idea before the public.  What are you going to tell them when they ask you why you want to do that?  Because if you tell them that it's to achieve equality for gay people, you're going to hit the same wall we're hitting now, only with the added obstacle of pissing everybody off because we're trying to downgrade their legal marriage.

          Really, this idea is so counterproductive it's silly.

          •  You've just misstated the whole point of all this (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            1864 House, jamesia

            Marriage equality is not just for gay people.  It's for all people.  And no, jamesia's proposed idea (which is not new, actually) doesn't "downgrade" anything...instead of "marriage" being the legal term, everyone would have a "civil union".  If you want a "marriage", see someone in the clergy.  It's actually pretty simple.

            •  Hey! (0+ / 0-)

              That's exactly what I meant. And I do think it's partly semantics. I just think if marriage really is a religious institution, which for me that is what's driving conservatives' opposition, then the government really should have no power to regulate it. It's simple, if the government is allowed to define who you "marry" by gender, why not by income? age? dog ownership? It'd be simpler to say a legal union is open to any two consenting adults, and churches can "marry" whoever they like. The redefinition is for separation of church and state, and is for everyone, not just gays. Personally, I find the whole business silly, but I like to look for compromises. Other than that, I don't want to government to trample on religion, and certainly not vice versa.

        •  The only problem is inventing the word. n/t (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
        •  You've got it backwards (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Marriage was a legal institution before Christianity cared much about it.

      •  Then hold hands and jump over the stick (0+ / 0-)

        changing the legal wording to partnership or civil union imho will end up as the solution.

        "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

        by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:04:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The problem (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          is that "marriage" is well-entrenched in common law and case law as a legal term of art (i.e. a word or phrase that has a very specific meaning in legal matters, a meaning that may be quite different from the common one). I don't think legislatures have the power to redefine legal terms of art.

          There are already tons of situations where a couple can be legally married, but one or more churches don't recognize the relationship. I don't see why this case is different.

          I do like conducting hearings in an actual hearing room -- John Conyers

          by ebohlman on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 10:09:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  just forthe record Arizona isn't all that red any (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    more. Even that bastion of wingnuttery Maricopa county voted it down.

    Also, keep in mind though, the opponents of this bill did a fantastic job in the campaign.  

    Gay rights were rarely broughtup except by the wingnuts.

    The main focus was on how this would end partnership rights for any couple gay or straight and that imho is what really pushed it over to defeat.

    The numbers tell the story though only the very rural very red counties voted in favor.

    "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

    by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:49:51 PM PDT

  •  This is a step in the right direction. (5+ / 0-)

    I just hope that the state supreme court upholds the decision. As a happily married heterosexual woman, I believe that it is time to give homosexuals equal rights under the law.

    They more than deserve to live and love with dignity like every other American...

    ...strength is not without humility. It's weakness and untreatable disease, and war is always the choice of the chosen who will not have to fight. Bono

    by Peperpatch on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 04:56:01 PM PDT

  •  Um... (4+ / 0-)

    Don't you all know that: a) marriage is the bedrock of Western civilization, and b) the war in Iraq is the epicenter of our clash of civilizations with Islamofascism, therefore c) those in favor of gay marriage don't support our troops?

    I mean, someone has to point out the obvious.

  •  We need to redefine (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buddabelly, Leo in NJ
    what marriage is and isn't.  We call the spiritual partnership and the State-recognized contract the same thing, even though they no longer have the same meaning.  Conservative Christians are either unintentionally or deliberately confusing the two, despite their very distinct differences, because we use the same language to refer to two separate things.  The GOP tends to get a lot of mileage out of single-issue voters, so really what we need to do is take away their ammunition, change the rules of the game.

    What I am proposing is this:  you get married by whoever you want, with whoever you want, in whatever manner you want.  It is a purely spiritual and religious function, and is not recognized by the State.  Aside from being bonded, soul to soul, in front of the eyes of the Lord, there are no benefits to getting married.  This is a personal, religious matter, and the State has no say in who you marry.

    The only sort of thing recognized by the State would be a domestic partnership (I am deliberately choosing this over civil unions simply because it is easier to say "I went to the County Clerks office today to get partnered" than it is to say "I went to the County Clerks office today to get civil unioned.  It also sounds better.  For those with a dirty mind, this also enables you to say that "Man, I'm just bone tired after having to go and get DP'd at the County Clerks office today).  Domestic partnerships would carry all the socio-economic and legal benefits that we associate with the current system.  All the State (and by this I've meant both the federal and state government systems) requires and recognizes is that you wish to live with or pool resources with someone/something else.  That would be all the state could recognize, it could neither confirm nor deny if you had been bonded on a spiritual level with your partner.

    To sum it up in a simple fashion:  you get married before God, you get partnered by the State.

    The true measure of a man's character lies not in how he treats his friends, but in how he treats his enemies.

    by FunkyEntropy on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:29:48 PM PDT

    •  rAmen (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Leo in NJ

      "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

      by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:36:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  asdf (0+ / 0-)
      As an added bonus, if the fundies try to play the "ZOMG TEH GAYS, THEY'RE GETTIN MARRIED" card after this linguistic reshuffling, you can slam them with a retort along the lines of, "what right do you have to tell other people how to live their religious lives?"  Because, after all, marriage would only have spiritual/religious connotations.

      The true measure of a man's character lies not in how he treats his friends, but in how he treats his enemies.

      by FunkyEntropy on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:54:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  NOT! (0+ / 0-)

      You can get partnered (or your choice of wording)
      at your church.  I get married by the state.  Feel
      free to do this also if so wish.  There will be no
      church that will ever take away my marriage.

      When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. - Jonathan Swift

      by lvillelass on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 08:04:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's not going to work (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      First and foremost because people don't want to use the word "partner" for who they are spending their lives with.  "Partner" is used in too many other, different contexts, including business, and that's exactly the nub of it right there, people don't want to be using a business term, one that can be confused to mean something else, for their lover.

      Now, a lot of other countries have had it the right way all along - you get legally married in civil ceremonies, you get married before your god in religious ceremonies.  Religious couples, consequently, have two ceremonies - one civil, one religious.  Non-religious couples or religious couples who for some reason will not/cannot marry in their church have just the one civil ceremony.

      This issue splits down pretty well in America by generation.  The oldest and most conservative generations will not accept any kind of civil equivalent.  Texas banned gay marriage years ago, but they still went back to the polls in 1998 and proceeded to ban any civil equivalents.

      Then you have the next tier down, who are basically okay with civil unions, strong domestic partnership registrations, whathaveyou, but don't want the word "marriage" to be used.  Fine.

      But then you go down to the youngest generations and they're totally fine with marriage.  They don't insist on "civil unions" or "partners" or some other terminology...marriage is just fine.  They've been hearing that terminology for most of their lives already in regards to gay couples and they're used to it, and that terminology will only continue to be used more and more widely - see Melissa Etheridge referring to Tammy Lynn Michaels as her wife onstage at the last Oscars.

      Now, all these lovely marriage/civil-union-banning propositions that have unfortunately made it into law in so many states do have an interesting and unintended effect.  It's a lot harder to overturn something, anything, no matter how stupid/wrong than it is to vote something into law in the first place - part of the reason why the homophobes were in a huge rush to do this, because they see the poll numbers too among the young and they know this is a lost issue in the long run.  But the flip side is that when all those state constitution amendments are finally voted back out of existence, the people doing the voting will be those who are currently the young generation (plus, of course, the generations following them), and these are generations who have no hangups where terminology is concerned.  So when those amendments finally go, what comes in won't be civil unions or domestic partnerships, but full marriage.

      Civil unions, in the long run, will be viewed historically as an antiquated and inadequate manifestation of the "separate but equal" idea where gay relationships are concerned, and the kids studying this period then will have no idea what on earth the fuss was all about, anyway.

      •  I agree w/ your analysis. (0+ / 0-)

        Civil unions, in the long run, will be viewed historically as an antiquated and inadequate manifestation of the "separate but equal" idea where gay relationships are concerned....

        It reminds me of my favorite line from the movie "Philadelphia".  

        "I didn't raise my kids to sit at the back of the bus."

      •  Sorry for the late reply (0+ / 0-)
        I don't disagree with your analysis at all.  However, I think you misunderstood what I was actually trying (apparently unsuccessfully) to say.

        What I was trying to say is that we need to update the English language such that we would use one word to refer to civil marriage and a completely different word to refer to religious/spiritual marriage.  This would be in contrast with the current system, which uses the same word to refer to two similar but unique concepts.

        Frankly, I don't care what we call them, so long as we call them something different so as to eliminate ambiguity and confusion.  Because, impatient person that I am, I'd much rather people have their full rights now than in 30 or 40 years down the line.

        And, just in case there's any lingering confusion, these words (and the resulting civil/religious laws that would, hopefully, follow) would apply to everybody, not just homosexuals like the current civil unions nonsense that some states have in place.

        The true measure of a man's character lies not in how he treats his friends, but in how he treats his enemies.

        by FunkyEntropy on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 06:52:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  i am not gay, and I have never been gay. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidkc, buddabelly

    that said, how nice to see a sane result even in Eyeowa.

    the point is not activist judges, we HAVE to change the paradigm, the frame, as some call it.
    it is true freedom and democracy.

    In the United States, doing good has come to be, like patriotism, a favorite device of persons with something to sell. - Mencken

    by agnostic on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:34:18 PM PDT

  •  Kos, it's a bit misleading (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skidrow, buddabelly, jamesia, Leo in NJ
    to claim that Arizona rejected an initiative to ban gay marriage. As I recall, the Arizona initiative was poorly worded and would have banned legal recognition of heterosexual unmarried couples as well as homosexual ones. That's likely why it was rejected, sad to say.
    •  Isn't that what happened in Georgia too? (0+ / 0-)

      or something like that...

    •  It was both but the opponents were very smart (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Leo in NJ

      in emphasising the loss of benefits for all partnerships gay or straight. I linked up page to the results. It failed in all but 3 counties iirc. Arizona is libertarian at heart. Even most of our wingnuts lean libertarian, Remember Goldwater.

      "every saint has a past, every sinner has a future" Oscar Wilde

      by buddabelly on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:58:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That kind of wording (0+ / 0-)

      was in most of the states' documents that passed. In Indiana, it passed in 2004 but it didn't pass last year (it has to pass twice, two different legislatures, before it can be ratified) and the main opposition was that it would affect heterosexuals as well. Many states' that had passed and were implemented earlier were pointed to in order to show the problems, like a guy in Ohio getting off lighter for beating his girlfriend because domestic partnership stuff no longer covered them. So, a lot of others were poorly worded but they still passed. Personally, I wish we had defeated it last year on the fact that equality is an American value (and several big corporate muckedy-mucks--God Bless their cold, shriveled little robber baron hearts--spoke to the lege about just such equality with speeches that nearly brought tears to my eyes) but if we had to defeat it on other grounds, I'm just glad it was defeated.

      tragically un-hip

      -5.88, -6.82

      by Debby on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 09:44:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What was different about Arizona (0+ / 0-)

        is that it's a very popular destination for retired people, many of whom are widows/widowers who eventually find new relationships. Many such couples don't want to formally marry because they'd lose pension benefits associated with their deceased former spouses and that would cause them severe financial hardship. But they still want and need some sort of legal protection.

        So the difference in AZ was that due to the state's demographics, the amendment would negatively affect a much larger percentage of the population than a similar amendment would elsewhere.

        I do like conducting hearings in an actual hearing room -- John Conyers

        by ebohlman on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 10:16:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Republicans are hypocrites (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Debby, jct, bartcopfan, jimmyboyo, Leo in NJ

    Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed a gay marriage bill passed by the activist legislators who were trying to legislate from the legislature, and instead said that it should be up to the courts.

    "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

    by jfern on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:46:17 PM PDT

  •  I would expect (0+ / 0-)

    this to be upheld at the Iowa Supreme Court.  Dems have had the Governorship for 8 years, are in control of both houses, and the Iowa Supreme Court is generally progressive, especially on civil rights.  A Few years ago they decided that employers (and others) could not discriminate over orientation. But I am not sure about the make up of the court.  Anyone else know about this?

  •  The Democratic Candidates Weigh In (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Clinton:  I oppose gay marriage.
    Obama:  I am not a supporter of gay marriage.
    Edwards:  I support civil unions but not gay marriage.
    Kucinich:  This is a just decision by the Iowa courts.

    George W. Bush is just like Forrest Gump. Except that Forrest Gump is honest and cares about other people.

    by easong on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 06:41:15 PM PDT

  •  Ok, when is Seattle going to hit the papers (0+ / 0-)

    For this? The most recient artical I read about gays (queers, ect.) was there was a police officer whom did not even get out of his vehical to take the report, and didnt mark that it was a hate crime...

  •  This is now an issue in the presidential campaign (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    Last thing we need is GOP homophobic distractions from the issues that are actually devastating America... (gay marriage not being one of them, obviously)

    I know that Markos loves this fight...  I know we have to... we are pot comitted... but, it just gives the GOP another fearmongering bone to throw at the public to distract them from the awful job of governance the GOP has done.

    I think the good news here is that it won't have the same effect this time around... for one, Karl Rove isn't manipulating the system at the moment... but, most importantly, I think there has been a public backlash against anti-gay ideology.  While most initially supported gay marriage bans, I think the public is somewhat remorseful at the scope of these laws and the hate that they fuel.  After all, whether your gay neighbors are married or just living together isn't really threatening your well being, is it?  Certainly not like the collapse of the government at large.

    I don't want it to become a campaign issue... but, it will, invariably...  I just hope and pray that it doesn't have the same effect as it did in 2004, where Kerry's loss was aided by that fateful court decision in Massachussets.  I don't think it will this time around.

    So, let 'er rip, goopers!  I think you'll find that yhour powder on this one is all wet, especially if Giuliani becomes your nominee.



  •  "...Polk County Recorder Julie Haggerty...." (0+ / 0-)

    Man, I loved her in "Airplane"!

  •  Schmitz Blitz (0+ / 0-)

    Judge Robert Hanson of Polk County, Iowa struck down the state's decade-old anti-gay marriage statute this morning, finding that it violated the state constitution's due process and equal protection clauses.

    Gay couples across the state of Iowa are now free to apply for marriage licenses.

    While I was excited to learn of this ruling for gay equality, I fear it will be short lived.  The Polk County attorney plans on appealing the ruling to the State Supreme Court, and he has already filed a stay to prevent gay couples from marrying until the appeal is resolved.

    What's worse, Republican House Minority Leader Christopher Rants is already preparing an anti-gay marriage amendment to Iowa's constitution.

    We saw how the 2003 Massachusetts ruling in favor of marriage equality ushered in backlash across the country, culminating in 27 state amendments denying the right of marriage to gays. I fear this Iowa ruling will have a similar effect, especially with election season upon us. This is why I'm generally against sweeping court decisions like this. I think an incremental steps toward equality such as the ones in Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Washington, Virginia, and Michigan.

    I may be overly pessimistic--a lot has changed even in the five years since the Massachusetts ruling. In spite of all of the state wide amendments banning gay marriage, we have seen several states move in the opposite direction to provide the status of civil unions to gay couples (though still unequal).

    In addition, Rove (mastermind of the gay-baiting tactics to get out the conservative base)  is gone. The 'family values' wing of the Republican party is awash with the sex scandals of Senators Craig and Vitter. And recent polling has indicated that social wedge issues like gay marriage and abortion may not have the pull they had in past, what with two failing wars in the Middle East and all.

    Either way, should be a very interesting case to follow, and certainly more to come on the Blitz.

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