Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Here's what I have to say about Maine

I'm surprised I can still be disappointed by the ignorance & bigotry of those who are willing to legislate away the civil rights of other Americans. Thank God we didn't have referendums in 1954 or Brown v Board of Education would have been toast. La lucha continua!


Unknown said...

And you've seen what I have to say about it.

Kay & Sarah said...

I am having trouble understanding why people get to vote on a civil rights issue. I, too, am really disappointed and angry about this.

Jim said...

Here is my thought:Jim's.

Sad, indeed I will stand on the word I used on my blog: pathetic.


BJ said...

I have to agree with two auntees -- why is a civil rights issue being voted on? Blacks, women would never have their civil rights if it were left to a popular vote! I do think we need to work with the present environment. People will support civil unions (or the polls indicate that0. Can we settle for that until bigoted and ignorant accept marriage for something other than "between one man and one woman." Am I being too kind?

Just Me said...

Well as an ignorant bigot, the problem that y'all are having is with the word "marriage".

Most of the ignorant bigots I talk to could care less about same-sex marriages per se; what they object to is the word "marriage". If we all got the government out of the "marriage" business and declared ALL government-issued licenses as civil unions, the entire issue would pretty much disappear.

It isn't the package; it's the packaging.

And actually, the argument regarding race and women doesn't really apply. Public opionion changed before law did; excluding small pockets, but those small pockets still exist today. Some people just feel better about themselves when they can hate others.


"Public opionion changed before law did ..."

You're kidding, right? Did you live through the 60's and the signing of the civil rights bill and the firehosing of protesters and the blocking of school house doors? If not, go read up on it. And if so, then what part of separate is inherently unequal don't you get?

uffda51 said...

Terrence Roberts of the Little Rock Nine was a recent guest speaker at our church. If anyone knows that public opinion did not change before the law did, it’s Terrence Roberts. He also reminded us that it’s not necessary to travel back in time to the South in the 1960s to experience bigotry when it’s readily available right here in Southern California on a daily basis.

Just Me said...

People of different races became friends. People of different races fell in love. Many people didn't understand the "back of the bus" rules.

Was there violence? Absolutely. Was there uncontrolled anger over the "civil rights movement". Absolutely.

The more things change; the more they stay the same. You will always have crazies who make a bunch of noise and create chaos. Those crazies existed then and they exist now.

Unless of course you actually believe that racism is a thing of the past or that segregation doesn't exist today. It's appalling existence may be illegal, but (as I've said before) you can't legislate morality.

IT said...

Two points.

First, public opinion did NOT change on inter-racial marriage until the 1990s, 30 years AFTER the landmark Supreme Court Decision. At the time of the Loving v. Viriginia decision, a majority of Americans were opposed. If it had been put to the ballot, it would have lost. See post here (with data).

Second, it's not about the word marriage. In Washington, Referendum 71 (which is about domestic partnerships and explicitly NOT about marriage) is a squeaker of a race that is only narrowly winning. The opposition to REf 71 who are opposed domestic partnerships in WA said that they opposed giving GLBT people rights. It's not about the WORD. It's about the CONCEPT.

In fact, those opposed are explicitly opposed to US as GLBT people. They oppose our very existence. Quotes at The Blend.

So, "Just Me", YOU may say it's about the word. But history, and the actions of those on your side have made it clear that the word is only the very beginning. And we know exactly what they are saying.


No, you can't legislate morality. But you can -- and should -- legislate justice. For all.

Just Me said...

I don't do the whole "my side" / "your side" thing because (like the majority of so-called conservatives) I find no hope in unity through division.

That being said, people most often disagree with each for no other reason except their own personal experiences. This is why there are no such thing as generalities.

It really is possible for human beings to hold to different opinions and beliefs without resorting to anger and hatred.

The lens through which I view these "taboo" subjects can be reflected through my child's attitudes. My child cherishes the differences in people. I love to watch her and her friends play together; white, black, hispanic and asian. I love to watch her eyes light up when her step-sister comes to visit; the fact that her step-sister is a lesbian is of no consequence.

Inasmuch as I would be tickled pink to take credit, it isn't just because of my husband and I. It's also because of the neighborhood and the school and the church. It's because living in a so-called conservative town, she's learned that life is a whole lot better when people are just that; people.

RonF said...

You're kidding, right? Did you live through the 60's and the signing of the civil rights bill and the firehosing of protesters and the blocking of school house doors? If not, go read up on it. And if so, then what part of separate is inherently unequal don't you get?

Indeed I did. But the opinions of the protestors and the school house door blockers (while strongly held among their proponents and in given localities) were not the majority opinion across the country at that time.

I am having trouble understanding why people get to vote on a civil rights issue. I, too, am really disappointed and angry about this.

Discussing this in the context of the civil rights struggles that culminated in the 60's is misleading. The basis of someone's status as a member of a given race is not equivalent to the basis of someone's sexual behavior. The two are not comparable.

So while the Supreme Court quite correctly ruled that what consenting adults do in their own bedrooms is no one's business but theirs, measures such as this go beyond mere toleration and ask that the State approve and grant benefits to homosexual couples. To call this a civil right would mean that the law would have to regard homosexual couples as being equivalent to heterosexual couples. It does not. And it does not have to. The ability to engage in homosexual or any other behavior is a right. Getting privileges by the state based on that behavior is not.

Understand that civil rights have ALWAYS been voted on. Whether by legislative vote, referenda or Constitutional amendment, what constitutes a civil right has always in the end been decided by the ballot. And in the very end, it always devolves to the people. The Constitution puts barriers in the way to ensure that any change is carefully considered and has the strong support of the populace, but in the end all such questions are finally decided by the people, not 1 or 9 or 535 officials.

uffda51 said...

The idea that each of us is a “member of a given race” is simply not an idea that anyone living in the 21st century and familiar with the facts holds.

The Genographic Project, a five-year research partnership led by National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Spencer Wells and a team of renowned international scientists and IBM researchers, used cutting-edge genetic and computational technologies to analyze historical patterns in DNA from participants around the world to better understand our human genetic roots. DNA studies suggest that all humans today descend from a group of African ancestors who—about 60,000 years ago—began a series of migrations, usually as the result of catastrophic climate change.

Equally outdated and disproved is the notion that homosexuality is a behavior, rather than an orientation.

The decision to remain close-minded, to cling to disproved ideas and to live in the past is a lifestyle choice.

Unknown said...

"I don't do the whole "my side" / "your side" thing because (like the majority of so-called conservatives) I find no hope in unity through division."

There is no hope in unity with RWers. That's why I wish we'd just let the South secede and that lot can go back to the things they know and love - segregation; antimiscegenation laws; a patriarchal, fundamentalist Christian society; lynchings, you know, the "Southern way of life". They'd love it and now that there's widespread air conditioning, it's not even the hellhole in the summer it was when I was growing up in Texas.

But living together with that crowd, not a chance in the world! Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Unknown said...

"But the opinions of the protestors and the school house door blockers (while strongly held among their proponents and in given localities) were not the majority opinion across the country at that time."

And? You're saying that had those views been those of a national majority, segregation and racism would have been just fine?

And you may have grown up in the '60s, but you've obviously forgotten what happened in places such as Boston in the '70s. Racism was national; it was just initially less violent everywhere outside the South.

Mitchell said...

Susan you may be comparing apples to oranges.

LGMarshall said...

My spouse & I are Black & Caucasian respectively... all our children look like Barack Obama... yet we do not equate calling same-genital unions 'Marriage' with anything closely related to civil rights. Apples & Oranges.

Please have same-said compassion for those who are Faithful to God's Word.[Christians] No one is saying that you cannot have same-sex relations and build a life together, & be supportive of such unions. Mainstream society has done everything possible to bend over backwards to accommodate same genital relationships. There is virtually no prejudice shown... it's totally mainstream to live openly homosexual. Live & let live is the mantra of the day. The English Language is precise... and we merely want to continue to adhere to the accepted definition of Marriage. [which by the way,-- has its origins in the Bible, the book that the Episcopal Church was founded upon].

MarkBrunson said...


I'm from the South. I'm liberal. So, we all can just go to Hell?


You don't honestly believe these people can be reasoned with, do you?

They're animals, incapable of compassion or decent action.


LGMarshall ... just for a moment imagine how it would be to have your marriage -- the most important relationship in your life, with all the complexity of its emotional, spiritual, psychological and sexual components reduced to "opposite genital relationships."

Honestly! (And if it really IS "all about genitals" then please get some therapy.)

And Mark ... if we let "them" push us to cease to recognize the humanity in our opponents then they've won a bigger battle than marriage equality will ever be. Not gonna let 'em win. Either battle.

IT said...

TThere is virtually no prejudice shown... it's totally mainstream to live openly homosexual.(LGM)

You're kidding right?

Do you really need a litany of all the civil rights (NOT religious) that are denied faithful gay couples?

Do you really need us to enumerate the injury done to families who are denied access to hospitals, pension rights, tax rights, housing, and jobs?

Do you really need us to enumerate the gay bashing violence?

My relationship with my wife (legal wife, I might add) is NONEXISTANT in federal terms and we are routinely disadvantaged in ways large and small.

Not to mention treated like **** by government functionaries.

During the PRop8 run up I was cursed, spit on, and yelled at. My car was vandalized. And all I want is the same SECULAR RIGHTS given to any other citizen.

Your RELIGIOUS FREEDOM cannot be purchased by discriminating against the civil rights of others.

RonF:Understand that civil rights have ALWAYS been voted on.
Uh, no. They aren't. The foundation of a constitutional democracy is that a minority's rights are NOT voted on. No one voted on the abolition of miscegenation laws. If they had, school would still be segregated in Georgia, and mixed race couples would not be married. That is a fact. And if you want to point us at the popular votes leading to abolition of slavery, women's rights, or any other examples of civil rights, that would be helpful too.

Unknown said...

No, Mark, you needn't go to hell, but if I were you, I'd seriously consider moving to California or Massachusetts, anywhere outside the South.

Unknown said...

And Mark, I couldn't agree with you more about the nature of the opposition.

MarkBrunson said...

That's like saying that we should recognize the humanity of rabid dogs or the rabid dogs win.

I'm sorry. I just don't but it. Maybe when I've had time to heal from their latest evil; but, meanwhile, I want them to experience every moment, every ounce, every jot and tittle of pain they've inflicted (please, Dear Lord, let it be so!), them and their families, every moment of it. Then, maybe they can understand what human is.

The Pensacola Hippie said...


Just know that some of we " Straight Allies* will continue to fight for justice for ALL persons.

LGMarshall said...

Susan-- I CAN imagine what it's like to have a deep, caring, spiritual, emotional relationship with someone of the same sex. Because I have that in my life.[a few in fact]. My very best friend for over 40 years is someone I confide in, someone I cherish, someone I laugh with, someone I cry with. We travel together! Some one I pray with. It's a wonderful relationship, which nourishes me, builds me up, supports me, loves me unconditionally. It's great! We're very close --we kiss, we hug. I'm looking forward to spending time with my friend in Heaven, in All Eternity. In addition, my spouse of 20 years also has such a friend....

So you see, It actually does boil down to same-genital relations being forbidden by God.... Sexual Boundaries are a Good thing! -- there are soooo many more benefits that come from adhering to God's boundaries, than from going against them...

MarkBrunson said...

Yeah, but, John, I love the land here. I have a parish, friends, family, even a job in which I'm out and open . . . and accepted. Not by everyone, no, but by those special to me. Why should I want to leave? Why should you want to leave those people? Do we partition our homes and say there are places we won't go?

I want the bigots gone, too. I want them to have no further power over me or mine. But, I don't want to leave those I love behind, either.

If we leave this evil, even in one place, it will spread. California? Is it really that much better (Prop8, remember?) The problem is stamping out the root of the evil.

Look at LGMarshall, here: what's said sounds reasonable, but our spirits writhe knowing there's something sick in what Marshall is saying, something that says that Marshall thinks those Marshall is speaking to are too stupid to see through the inconsistency. And LGMarshall and that ilk are not speaking to us, but to those who are lurking, listening, waiting, without understanding. They seek to corrupt the understanding of those with no direct experience, and will if we withdraw from the field.

They have to be fought because, as Disney World reminds us, it's a small world, after all.

MarkBrunson said...


I give my confession and ask absolution of you. I despaired. No life is worth casting aside, even those of bigots.

I will say that, while no one is beyond the Grace of God, I believe that these people refuse it. I cannot help them, only stand against them. They are in God's care, and only He can help them, now.

But I know that we will stand. They have no iron in them, and we have been tempered by our lives. We can stand with each other or alone, while they, like mangy, masterless animals, have strength only in the pack.

God is with us.

Br. Anselm Philip King-Lowe, OSB said...

Ok, I will add my two cents here. The problem is that the anti-gay marriage ran a campaign based on fear without using the God given gift of reason.

It was through reason that we eventually understood that slavery of African Americans was wrong. It is through reason that we have begun to understand that women have an important place in the leadership of the Church.

So it is through reason that we need to encourage people to look at the Scriptures that supposedly condemn homosexuality. LGBT individuals are people created by God with dignity, integrity and their ability to love people of the same sex is part of God's gift to all humanity. Our love is no less great than the love between people of the opposite sex. And just like people of the opposite sex celebrate their loving commitment publicly, so same-sex couples should equally enjoy such opportunities.

Enough with fear and intimidating campaigns. It past time for LGBT people to be portrayed in positive ways who have God-given gifts. Until people understand that through the good use of reason, then LGBT people will continue to have these problems.