Bush renews call for Bigotry

Bush Re-Enters Gay Marriage Fight

President Bush plans to wade back into the emotional debate over same-sex marriage for the first time in his second term beginning today with a pair of speeches pressing the Senate to approve a constitutional amendment next week defining marriage as the union of a man and woman.

Bush, whose opposition to marriage between gay partners helped power him to reelection in 2004, has remained largely silent on the issue since, much to the consternation of conservatives who complain he has not exerted leadership. Now, with midterm elections approaching, he is returning to a topic that galvanizes an important part of the Republican base.

Complete with Orwellian doublespeak!

“His position is that he thinks people ought to have the freedom to lead their private lives,” White House spokesman Tony Snow said. “He also does not believe that that means that you have to redefine the institution of marriage. He believes the institution of marriage is between a man and a woman.”

Just try to parse that without your head exploding. I dare you.

On the bright side, the effort has about zero chance of going anywhere, it’s just empty rhetoric trying to salvage a lame duck Presidency. It’s the same old lame arguments, “defense of marriage”, “activist judges”, etc. Somewhere in there he’ll no doubt invoke 9/11.

Still, its bigotry just to call for it. It’d be nice to have a President… and countrymen… who were more enlightened than that.

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2 Responses to “Bush renews call for Bigotry”

  1. Michael Toborowsky Says:

    This is a difficult issue only because of partisan right-wing abuse of the Constitution.

    Verbatim from the Declaration of Independence:

    1) “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (read persons) are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

    2) That to secure these rights governments are instituted among men, deriving their powers from the consent of the governed; that when any form of government becomes destructive to these rights, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it……..

    (Italics mine)

    Verbatim from the Constitution of the United States of America

    The so called “Bill of Rights”, Amendments 1 through 26.

    Item: Amendment IX: “The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

    Item: Amendment X: “The powers not delegated by the United States Constitution, nor prohibited to it by the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

    Also strongly implicit (and severally explicit points) in the Federalist Papers as well as the writings between Jefferson and Madison (and I have every one of them courtesy of a trilogy entitled, “The Republic of Letters”, The Correspondence between Jefferson and Madison, 1776 to 1826, a weighty tome of over 2002 pages containing thousands of personal letter regarding highly topical issues regarding the formation of the Constitution, it is quite clear that the very concept of the creation of a separate legal class of citizens was abhorrent to the founders on pure principle alone. (Keep in mind for example that we reject “titles” as used by the English, this is no accident or mere oversight. It is meant to make a clear statement that the creation of a “priviledged class” of people is expressly antithetical to the new Constitution.)

    The point of all of this is to illustrate that the creation of a class of persons based on their sexual prefence is utterly antithetical to the overarching theme of our moral and more importantly legal ideology as a nation.

    What any of this should have to do with gay marriage – a secular contract as far as the law is concerned – seems to me glaring and clear. The marriage contract from a legal standpoint cannot be nullified simply because certain constituents might find it unacceptable due to the fact that the participants in this “contract” are of the same sex. No where in Constitution is there a strict prohibition of this activity and therefore, as cited above, these rights revert to the people and the States.

    It is this very mechanism that the founders sought to quash. If they – or we – deny the slippery slope of denying whole groups of persons based simply on sexual preference where does it end? Are redheads some day to be marginalized due to their hair color? I think not since this would open the door that was opened in Germany in 1936, vies-a-vie, your rights are denied because of religious preference. The examples could fill a short book (200 pages or so of simple lists from the infirm to the extremely talented) and this is not what the Constitution or any of the aforementioned documents had in mind. Homosexuality certainly existed at the time of the creation of the document and many of the founders, classically educated would have been aware of the utter acceptance of male homosexuality in ancient Greece; a culture both revered and utilized during the crafting of our basic laws.

    The key is simply tolerance. Without tolerance the entire structure of the tapestry of our “E Pluribus Unum” democratic republic would simply collapse. Referring to the selected passages above we can imagine that if gays were a problem for the founding fathers they would have explicitly mentioned the issue. To support my claim I would cite the few behaviors the founders did find intolerable. An example would be treason or the abuse of the powers of high office. If they wanted to legislate homosexuality out of the picture they had the opportunity to do so but wisely declined realizing the “slippery slope” nature of the assertion.

    To summarize the first part of the argument, it is patently and demonstrably unconstitutional to create a separate class of citizens and then single them out for discrimination.

    Now, the argument has been made that the “institution” of marriage must be protected and I agree! It should and will be protected very nicely, thank you very much, within the protected realms of the numerous religions practiced in this country. Here the sanctity of marriage is defensible. However, as a legal issue the language and constructs of the Constitution simply do not support the establishment of laws or “set asides” for secular marriage requiring the participation of one man and one woman.

    So let’s save it for the next entry when we can get into all the little variations that will confuse the hell out of you! For example, people exist that are in fact two sexes in one body. Where do you place them on the continuum? As always, feedback is most welcome!

    This is a complex issue……. so, More later.


    JUNE 1 , 2006

  2. Eric Says:

    Thank you greatly for the long and thought out reply! Personally I don’t gay marriage as such a difficult or complex issue.

    On the one hand it’s a straight up issue of equal rights and civil liberties: homosexuals are being denied the roughly 1,500 special rights that come with the legal status of marriage, because the legal institution of marriage currently enforces gender discrimination.

    On the other hand government involvement in the religious institution of marriage is a clear violation of church and state separation and a quintessential example of why we need such separation to begin with. Religious fundamentalist whackjobs do have a legitimate complaint that the government shouldn’t be re-defining marriage for them; on the flip side, any church that wishes to recognize gay marriage is legitimate cannot do so on under the current system.

    The ideal solution, of course, is to simply get the government out of the marriage business. The government should concern itself with enforcing any legal arrangements individuals want to enter into with each other concerning power of attorney, property sharing, name changes, etc. and not whether such a contract represents a marriage. Churches are perfectly capable of deciding for themselves whether a couple (gay or otherwise) is married in the eyes of God, without worrying about what contracts exist between the two people in question.

    It’s only being brought up again now though as pure political posturing; a last ditch effort by the Bush Administration and Republicans in Congress to salvage sinking poll numbers, which is the reason it’s being painted as more complex than it actually should be.

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