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Is Obama's position on gay marriage sustainable?

That seems to be one of the core political questions in the wake of the overturning of Proposition 8. How can the president continue opposing gay marriage while supporting the decision to strike down Prop 8, on the grounds that it's "discriminatory," as the White House said in a statement last night?

Making it more dicey, the White House statement also said that the president continues to push for "full equality" for gay and lesbian couples. How can that not include support for gay marriage?

This morning, senior White House adviser David Axelrod struggled to defend this position on MSNBC. Here's what he said:

"The president opposed Proposition 8 at the time. He felt that it was divisive. He felt that it was mean-spirited, and he opposed it at the time. So we reiterated that position yesterday. The president does oppose same-sex marriage, but he supports equality for gay and lesbian couples, and benefits and other issues, and that has been effectuated in federal agencies under his control. He's supports civil unions, and that's been his position throughout. So nothing has changed."

But as John Aravosis says, everything has changed.

Here's another problem: In the interview with MSNBC this morning, Axelrod clarified that Obama believes that gay marriage is an issue for states to decide, and it's true that Obama opposes the Defense of Marriage Act, which codified a federal ban on gay marriage.

But as Michael Shear notes, his administration has yet to actively seek a repeal of DOMA, and is acquiescing to Congressional leaders who insist that the current political reality dictates that repeal is impossible. And his administration continues to defend DOMA in court against appeals.

Also: Obama has in the past claimed there's no inconsistency between opposing Prop 8 and opposing gay marriage by arguing he thinks gay marriage is wrong but we shouldn't be prohibiting it legally.

"When you're playing around with constitutions, just to prohibit somebody who cares about another person, it just seems to me that that is not what America is about," he said in a 2008 MTV interview. "Usually constitutions expand liberties, they don't contract them."

But DOMA does just this, and while Obama opposes it, actively moving to repeal is what would turn this argument from mere eloquence to reality.

The problem for the White House is that the Prop 8 decision will force this issue onto full boil nationally, just as the Arizona law did with illegal immigration. And heading into his 2012 reelection campaign, the gay and lesbian community -- an important Dem constiuency -- will be demanding full support for gay marriage, and a repeal of DOMA.

They'll be demanding complete consistency, and won't want to be lectured about what is and isn't possible amid some arbitrarily defined "political reality."

By Greg Sargent  |  August 5, 2010; 12:38 PM ET
Categories:  gay rights  
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Comments

Greg: "Obama has in the past claimed there's no inconsistency between opposing Prop 8 and opposing gay marriage by arguing he thinks gay marriage is wrong but we shouldn't be prohibiting it legally."

This is the key to the tightrope act.

I can certainly imagine being unhappy with him for having this belief (if that's what it is), but to not vote for him based on it, when he's said he won't go the legal prohibition route, doesn't make sense. Maybe in a primary if he gets a liberal challenger, but NOT in the general.

The GOP provides NO alternative. Period.

It's a good post though; we need to get all this stuff on the table for the future.

Posted by: BGinCHI | August 5, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Greg, I think that a lot of the lgbt community and those not in the community believe that Obama's decision to revert from his 1996 stance as "pro-marriage equality" to not being for it as simple politics.

I don't think it's that simple. Remember this is during his religious reenlightenment phase at Trinity in Chicago.

I'm just going to quote the Audacity of Hope:

"It is my obligation..to remain open to the possibility that my unwillingness to support gay marriage is misguided...and that in years hence I may be seen as someone who was on the wrong side of history." h/t @norahodonnell

Tell me, does that sound like someone who's going to shift on the politics of the issue?

Posted by: calchala | August 5, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Obama's position on same-sex marriage is driven by the exit polling on anti-gay marriage ballot initiatives, showing that, in many areas, the enjoyed equal support from registered Democrats and Republicans.

It's electoral triangulation, not a deeply held conviction that gay marriage is wrong.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 5, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Maybe this is above his pay grade too? BTW: Judge Walker is also a homosexual:

http://articles.sfgate.com/2010-02-07/bay-area/17848482_1_same-sex-marriage-sexual-orientation-judge-walker

IMPEACH WALKER!!!

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

calchala, that is an important quote. is there a link to it somewhere?

and BGin CHI, I think a solution there for him is to get DOMA repealed. that's a real achievement and makes his claim that we shoudln't be prohibiting it legally more than mere words...

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 5, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

"struggled" is the operative term here. All those mad smarts, skills and experience, and all Axelrod has left is 'separate but equal'

Posted by: ayfkm | August 5, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Wow, pointing out an obama hypocrisy.

To do that properly would require devotion, budget, staff of 10...

Posted by: docwhocuts | August 5, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Greg says "Obama has in the past claimed there's no inconsistency between opposing Prop 8 and opposing gay marriage by arguing he thinks gay marriage is wrong but we shouldn't be prohibiting it legally."

The great strength of Judge Vaughn Walker's opinion in the Prop 8 case is that he first took evidence on every one of the proponents' claims about why marriage equality is wrong abd then showed that they lack any credible factual basis, but rather are based on personal dislike of gays and/or their practices or irrational fears about their supposed threat to children. In fact, he quotes from an internal memo in which the proponents report from a focus group that they cannot win using just a defense of traditional marriage. They could, however, win by scaring just enough people that their kids would become gay if the existence of gays were mentioned in the schools and kids were taught that gays are worthy of tolerance. Hence the scampaign they waged sowing fears about the schools being mandated to teach that same-sex marriage is ok.

Walker then boiled this down to a belief that gays are inferior and that their relationships are inferior, and that straights are morally superior and their relationships are morally superior. He then concluded that this kind of belief is insufficient grounds to restrict a fundamental right as basic as the right to marry the person (note: not persons, not species) of ones choice.

Obama's personal animus toward gay epople and his belief that they (we) are just not as good as he is, and their (our) relationships are just not as good as his has been unmasked for what it is. He is at least consistent in recognizing that his persoanl animus is an insufficient basis for denying marriage to gay people and so I would expect him to (slowly) come around to retracting his support for DOMA, because it really can't stand that kind of scrutiny.

Roberts and Alito are another matter, however. They will have no trouble at all (along with Thomas) concluding that moral objections to a group, if grounded in centuries of religiosu belief, are a sufficient basis to deny marriage equality no matter how good the evidence shows it is for both gays and for society. I'm not at all sure about Kennedy or perhaps Scalia on this one, tough.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Greg, agreed.

clawrence, unless that's snark, go back to Red State. We're trying to have a grown-up discussion here.

Posted by: BGinCHI | August 5, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

BGinCHI, it is not "snark" as I fully expect a new GOP House of Representatives to pass Articles of Impeachment against Walker and the 9th Circuit Justices who vote to sustain this case.

In the meantime, of course, I do hope that Obama's position on same-sex marriage is sustainable.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Mimikatz, not just Roberts, Alito and Thomas, don't forget about Scalia (read his dissent in Lawrence v. Texas) and Kennedy. Unless my math is off, that's a majority.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

God will not be mocked and HE IS SUPREME, NOT SOME LIBERAL JUDGE OR 'SUPREME COURT" Any judge that voted so contrary to God's law should be impeached.

Posted by: HelenWallace | August 5, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Greg, I got the quote from Norah O'Donnell's twitter page. It's twitter.com/norahodonnell

Yes, it is important, it explains that he's willing to be seen on the wrong side of history for a position, even one that's becoming untenable with his base. But it doesn't explain how he wants DOMA gone and DADT gone and is opposed to Prop 8.

It's a very thin distinction but a distinction nonetheless.

Posted by: calchala | August 5, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

I agree, HelenWallace (vote for Republican Congressmen this November!)

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

well gee HelenWallace, sounds like Jay Bybee violated said "laws" - how far along in his impeachment process are you ?

Posted by: ayfkm | August 5, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Lets just accept the White House statement at face value for a moment and ask...

Where is the Federal Civil Unions bill? I for one have not heard anything about such a bill from the White House or the Democratic Congress.

Posted by: MarcMyWords | August 5, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Mr Sargent is of the class of pundits who don't believe, as a matter of course, anything that any politician says. This could be considered wise in light of our history in the last forty years. However, there are times when this becomes an impediment to truth. We now have a man as president who is a straight arrow. Obama, as best as he can manage, does not use words to deceive and keeps his polite white lies, ones that we all tell, to a minimum.
If Obama says this issue should be decided by the states, he believes it so therefore does not push at the federal level for repeal of DOMA... yet. It is also smart political strategy.
So goes the bulk of criticism pf President Obama.. a lot of wordage which essentially misunderstands who this man is..

Posted by: hrayovac2 | August 5, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"I fully expect a new GOP House of Representatives to pass Articles of Impeachment against Walker"

LOLOLOL!!!!!!

Because a judge conservatively rules on the facts in a way you personally don't like you expect the judge to be removed from office?

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"Unless my math is off, that's a majority."

Give that Kennedy is the author of the two SCOTUS landmark opinions firmly in support of the rights of gay Americans you're math is badly off.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Obama said: "Usually constitutions expand liberties, they don't contract them."

Right, Mr. President. We depend on YOU to contract them by considering Bush's egregious shredding of Constitutionally-guaranteed civil liberties as the baseline, or the new "normal" as has been characterized.

This double talk on gay marriage is but one example of stem-to-stern duplicity that is the hallmark of this administration chock full of stooges who evidently are more concerned about the right calling them names than the left and center staying at home in November.

Posted by: trippin | August 5, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

ayfkm, Jay Bybee did not violate "God's laws".

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

HelenWallace, thanks for expressing your religiously informed bigotry.

Have a nice day.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Jay Bybee is an unindicted war criminal who authorized torture as a policy of the state, a felony and a war crime.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

That was not a "conservative" decision, akaoddjob. None of the Founding Fathers or authors of the Equal Protection Clause would ever have supported same-sex marriage. As for Justice Kennedy, we'll soon see if this was the final straw or not.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Typical Obama rheteric. He tries to appeal to both sides of an issue while avoiding what is moral. He's as useless as a three dollar bill!

Posted by: wgp43 | August 5, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

None of the Founding Fathers had any problem with women being viewed as marital property, either.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Trolls, Jesus called and he wants his religion back.

Oh, and his dad is really pissed at you.

Posted by: BGinCHI | August 5, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Originalism is not a very smart approach to lawmaking.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps "a felony and a war crime" under MAN's law. That's not what ayfkm said, though.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

It also isn't a very smart approach to jurisprudence.

The 18th century was over 200 years ago.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

If you think torture is hunky dory under God's law you have bigger problems than Judge Walker.

Posted by: akaoddjob | August 5, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

akaoddjob, it's a much better approach than "free-for-all" moral relativism.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Greg Sargent sure has some purty lips.

Posted by: peterg73 | August 5, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Well, Aravosis has an axe to grind and that's fine, and it's productive and healthy. Having said that, Obama has taken a route of religious tolerance and respect for traditions. The fact that the institution of marriage has been "one man one woman" for generations is important to members of conservative social groups, but it's not really salient to the legal question. You can call it whatever you like: marriage, civil union, whatever. That's about semantics and semiotics and framing. Obama's point is broader and more legally and politically significant - i.e., that you can leave the term "marriage" as a relic of tradition and still have something else, legally, that is in all other ways marriage but doesn't interfere with the delicate and homophobic sensibilities of the Catholic hierarchy or the American Family Association.

Domestic partnership, civil union, whatever. There are "marriages" that are open to other sexual partners. There are "marriages" that are polygamous. There are "marriages" of convenience that allow an immigrant to be afforded a fast track to citizenship or legal residence in the U.S. There are "trial marriages" rooted in trying to share life together for a season, not for a lifetime.

At the end of the day, "matrimony" (there's a good Catholic word) is a church/religious/spiritual commitment. The legal/civil/political commitment is something different, and frankly the spiritual/religious is none of the government's business to regulate.

Posted by: benintn | August 5, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

You've never read the Old Testament?

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence12 : I don't believe that Jesus was a big proponent of water boarding, despite its use during the Spanish Inquisition. Wasn't there something about "what you do to the least of my brothers you do to me?" Didn't Bybee author the memo (subsequently withdrawn) authorizing torture (aka enhanced interrogation techniques)? Are you really going to defend torture as being in agreement with "god's laws?" Just askin'

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

So clawrence12, just what is your objection to mariage equality based on? I'm in one of the 18,000 couples whose marriages were allowed to stand by the California Supreme Court. I'd be curious to know just how my existence or marriage (which was happily celebrated by family and friends) has done you personally any damage. Judge Walker showed that none, and I mean none, of the grounds advanced by the proponents for Prop 8 were actually based in fact, in particular the myths about gays being a threat to children, based on admissible evidence. Even the proponents' main witness conceded that marriage equality was good for both gays and for the State, and for the children of gay parents. He admitted, basically, that the opposition was based on the "ick factor," and that just isn't a constitutionally acceptable basis.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

On what ground could you impeach a judge on a decision which has some legal support?
You impeach for crimes, not because you do not like their decisions. If Congress were to impeach Walker, it would be the End of Judicial Independence in America. That would be the end of the rule of law, and the America we love would be Dead.

Note the same thing applies to the political Bush Vs Gore Decision and all others I like or dislike. Unless the Judge makes many decisions with irrational logic that no one supports, they should not be impeached.

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | August 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Good analysis, mimikatz. A couple thoughts:

1. I wonder whether the Supreme Court might take a pass on this particular case, and let the larger issue "percolate" a little longer. Given the one-sided factual record it's maybe something they (at least the conservatives) don't want to touch, although of course you only need 4 to grant cert.

2. I'd love to see Thomas, the black man married to a white woman, try to deal with this supposed threat to "traditional" marriage.

3. Seems to me you can oppose the clearly unconstitutional Prop 8 (equal protection is not subject to majority vote) while still being against gay marriage. Some good points above about Obama's necessary political calculus, though I'd also add that this is yet another depressing example of the President trying to cut things too finely and ultimately just looking weak on everything. One of these days I'd love to see him declare something, anything, to be a hot button issue.

Posted by: simpleton1 | August 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Yes, srw3: Jesus Christ did not abolish Genesis 9:6.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

The Founding Fathers allowed slavery to stay n place.

Posted by: KathleenHusseininMaine | August 5, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Obama doesn't believe in gay marriage. I see nothing wrong with that.

The more important thing is that he isn't going to hoist his views on others as other people are doing. Obama says it is up to the states.

Posted by: maritza1 | August 5, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

simpleton1:

http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Lawrence_v._Texas/Dissent_Thomas

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

And, clawrence12, if you are trying to legislate the Book of Leviticus (or the selected parts you like), I'd direct your attention to the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, approved by our Founders, and a bit more recent and relevant enactment.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Repeal of DOMA won't happen via the Congress but most likely via the Supreme Court.

That is just the reality.

What Obama can do is repeal of DADT.

Posted by: maritza1 | August 5, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Mimikatz, you and your partner cannot procreate (is that "admissible" enough for you?).

Muddy_Buddy_2000, the House of Representatives alone decides what constitutes "High crimes and Misdemeanors" (even a failed impeachment vote would send the message).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Yes, KathleenHussaininMaine, but they also approved of the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution that would serve as the basis to outlaw slavery. No one is saying that we should outlaw homosexuals. The federal government, however, should not interfere with marriage.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence12 : Whoever sheds man's blood, his blood will be shed by man, for God made man in his own image.

Old testament justice doesn't support torture, just capital punishment.

Where does it say, whoever sheds man's blood (I guess killing women is OK), his body and mind should be tortured?

Of course, given your logic, we should be able to smite our neighbors who work on Sunday.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised Ethan2010 has chimed in yet. He must still be trying to figure out how to link this to Palin or the Republican leadership in Washington. I'm sure Greg will be able to write another blog with whatever link he comes up with tomorrow.

It's very interesting to me that David Axlerod tried to make the case that this is a state's issue to resolve. But he likely would see no contradiction then in saying that health care and abortion are federal issues. DOMA is a bad law that violates the spirit if not the intent of the full faith and credit clause. I do believe that states should have the ability to restrict who they issue marriage licenses to, but not to block legally issued ones from another state. Yes you can have it both ways, and yes it would encourage people to cross the state lines. So be it.
I never bought the arguement that this is a civil rights issue comparable to inter-racial marriage. The problem the states have is that they have never bothered to really define why they are trying to regulate marriage. Until that happens, none of these laws have a chance to be upheld, and challenges to bans will always succeed. Maybe the state should stop issuing marriage licenses all together?

Posted by: Bailers | August 5, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Well, on clawrence's definition of high crimes and misdemeanors being whatever the House wants them to be, let's get the current House to impeach the Supremes for putting GW into the Presidency in 2000. Then, there would be vacancies which Obama could fill with ultra left wingers.

Sounds good to me and clawrence.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | August 5, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

So marriage is restricted to a man and a woman who demonstrate to the satisfaction of the State that they can procreate? No marriage for post-menopausal women or paraplegic male veterans who can no longer procreate? Are you serious?

Read Wlaker's demolition of the argument that marriage is jsut about sex and procreation.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Walker, who was initially appointed by Reagan but got tied up, was finally appointed and approved by the Senate by George H.W. Bush.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 5, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama is an inept, inexperienced, weaselly little political chameleon who will say anything to gain favor.

His (alleged) amazing intelligence apparently is a barrier to his ability to say either "homosexual marriage is wrong" or "homosexual marriage is right".

I really wish the guy would grow a pair.

Posted by: spamsux1 | August 5, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that link, clawrence12. That's a privacy case, though (construing anti-sodomy laws). Thomas wussed out because he doesn't think there's a privacy penumbra in the Constitution. The present gay marriage decision, by contrast, really turns on a straight equal protection and due process analysis regarding marriage itself. Thomas won't be able to duck that nearly so easily because the equal protection and due process clauses unquestionably apply.

Posted by: simpleton1 | August 5, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

No, srw3, I am not against working on Sunday nor do I want to legislate any Biblical passage. I want the FEDERAL government to stay out of the marriage business. As for "torture" please re-read the Gospel accounts of the crucifixion.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

At least we've got a President that doesn't want to impose his religious beliefs on everyone through the courts like the pandering right wants to in order to quench the fringes thirst for religious justice.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 5, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

simpleton1, he joined SCALIA's dissent which dealt with the Equal Protection Clause. Don't you worry about Thomas (Kennedy is the swing vote).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone else remember that moment in the VP debate where Ifill was asking about same-sex marriage? Biden expanded on how the Obama/Biden team supports equal rights, and used the phrase "same-sex marriage" in what was a pretty clear-cut statement of support. Couple questions later, Ifill asked if he supported gay marriage, and he said no, and then differentiated between the civil side of marriage and the legal rights.

Not sure what it means in the bigger picture, but I remember it being kind of weird at the time.

Posted by: dkp01 | August 5, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Mimikatz, I've read it (although I've never said that "marriage is just about sex and procreation") and Judge Walker does NOT deal with the scenario of what happens when natural childbirth declines below sustainable levels.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Are you saying that the Gospel accounts of the crucifixion justify torture?

You also said that no one want to outlaw homosexuals. Isn't that exactly what the Maine GOP just put into their manifesto? Isn't that exactly what the Texas anti-sodomy law was intended to do.

Geez you guys are really too much. Pathetic.

And now you want to impeach federal judges because you don't like their decisions?

Really?

Posted by: cmccauley60 | August 5, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I can't wrap my head around what's so wrong with giving everyone the same inalienable rights?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 5, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington, even Reagan (and especially Bush) made mistakes. You are aware that PELOSI opposed Walker at the time, right?

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence12 : So Jesus and his dad supported Crucifixion? Crucifixion is condoned in the bible as a proper punishment? For what offenses? Really? I need chapter and verse where this is stated...

" I want the FEDERAL government to stay out of the marriage business."

So this is a states rights case like integration in the 60's?

"I don't support segregation. I am for states rights. The fact that we have dejure racism is really incidental to the issue." You really want to make that argument?

The point here is that a state passed a law/amendment that violates federal constitution. What actions should the feds take in cases like this?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

No, cmccauley60, that was an actual instance of an innocent man who was executed. Someone above, however, claimed that "capital punishment" in the Bible did not include "torture". The Book of Romans adequately sets forth the justification for that too. BTW: outlawing homosexual BEHAVIOR is different than outlawing sexual orientation.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Just do away with government being involved with "marriage." From this point forward our government can choose to favor (and certify) "partnerships." Marriage will cease to exist as a government function or responsibility - folks who want to can get "married" in a church.

Posted by: sbj3 | August 5, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

srw3, California's law against same-sex marriage no more violates the Constitution than our laws against polygamy or incest.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

cmccauley60, tell that to Rep. Conyers (D-MI) who didn't like the way Judge Porteous ruled either:

http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Articles_of_Impeachment_Against_United_States_District_Court_Judge_G._Thomas_Porteous,_Jr.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

I'm asking you clawrence. In my opinion, Conyers was wrong if he did that.

What do you think? Should federal judges be subject to impeachment for rulings you disagree with?

Posted by: cmccauley60 | August 5, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

@c12:The Book of Romans adequately sets forth the justification for that too.

Where exactly does it say that it is part of gods law to torture people?

"outlawing homosexual BEHAVIOR is different than outlawing sexual orientation."

But it is just as bigoted, stupid, and invasive of someone's personal life.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

mr sargent - you have my sincere apology for setting the fundies off on what is really a good post

Posted by: ayfkm | August 5, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I can't wrap my head around what's so wrong with giving everyone the same inalienable rights?

Posted by: mikefromArlington
==========================================
Marriage isn't an inalienable right, it's a prison. Be careful what you wish for.

Posted by: peterg73 | August 5, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence12 : So Jesus and his dad supported Crucifixion? Crucifixion is condoned in the bible as a proper punishment? For what offenses? Really? I need chapter and verse where this is stated...
-------------------------------------
My memory: Jesus said "forgive them for they know not what they do". This does NOT sound like an endorsement of torture or crucifixion, as in "let's go out and willy-nilly crucify people". Of course, I tend to see Jesus as peaceful.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | August 5, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Happy birthday, Mr. President; it's time to grow up.

I think that the President has forgotten -- if he ever really realized -- that had his parents attempted to take pre-schooler Barack on a family drive to Florida, there are a number of states where his parents' marriage would not have been recognized and in some of which they could have spent their vacation in jail.

I am sorry that CLawrence12 feels that because they did not procreate, the marriages between George and Martha Washington and between Senator and Senator Dole should not be considered valid.

Posted by: edallan | August 5, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

What a strange postition for Obama to hold. He thinks civil unions should be legal but also thinks gay marriage is wrong. One is from the viewpoint of man and the other is likely from some kind of "religious" vp.

Sure gives mixed signals, but, strangely, I repect the guy for showing his cards, however much I disagree.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | August 5, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Right now, straight people think they have a right to decide how gays should conduct their lives, whether gays should be married or just jump the broom. Ten years from now, we will look back at this time and find it quaint that we thought we had a say. By that time, it will be clear that heterosexual people do not have additional rights that homosexuals do not have--whether it is employment, housing or legal arrangements like marriage. We are watching the end of an era.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | August 5, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Clearly Obama is playing both sides here and it disgusts me. I am sure he supports GLBT rights and full marriage equality, but he must pander to others who do not. Ah the nature of American politics. I say make a stand man! Also we need to change this term of marriage. We all have civil unions; don't we all register with the state? Let's all have civil unions and religious institutions can perform marriage ceremonies as they see fit, but take away tax exempt status.

Posted by: DidiB | August 5, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

People are having a problem grasping the distinctions here, and it seems that the fundamental assumption that gay marriage is a question of individual rights is at the bottom of it all. Marriage is a social contract, not a right. Marriage as a social contract is intended to provide protections and support for a venture that involves many risks, most of which are not involved in a "gay union," and those that are can be satisfied with a civil partnership. I do not have a right to be married. I am ugly and without a pleasant disposition, and even though there is always some one for everyone, it doesn't make it a right. I am not discriminating against a gay person when I chose not to marry her/him, but it would be wrong for us as a society not to provide for some protections for these kind of unions, and we do already. Lets move on to solving some real problems that are more pressing than this one.

Posted by: rryder1 | August 5, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

All, Dems are trying to seize the upper hand in the argument over ethics:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/08/dem_strategy_on_ethics_make_le.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 5, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

cmccauley60, there's a difference between judges who make legitimate decisions that I simply disagree with and judges who illegitimate decisions. I am in favor of impeaching the later.

srw3, start with Romans 13:1-4 (which was written during the time of vicious Roman government rule. The Roman government had recently put Jesus Christ to death by crucifixion and was by no means pro-Christian. In spite of all this, God's ordinance remains).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Axelrod's comment is a cowardly, verbose mish-mash meant purely to evade and deceive, a real spin masterpiece. Shame on him and shame on our candyass president.

Posted by: irkulyen | August 5, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I am going to make the outrageous suggestion that it is possible to make a distinction between what one personally believes in, and what one thinks ought to be regulated by the state or federal government. One can personally oppose smoking, but not want the states to outlaw it, for example.

There is a third way, to maintain equal protection for all persons while not requiring states to issue gay marriage licenses: GET STATES OUT OF THE MARRIAGE BUSINESS.

States need to regulate civil unions, as they do with any contract, which can be entered into by consenting adults. But they have no business telling me who I can commit myself to love and care for and support.


Posted by: j3hess | August 5, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I'm a person who is in favor of gay marriage in general, but I was opposed to Olson and Boies bringing this suit. My opposition was based on the usual reasons -- the political climate, the chance that the suit could do more harm than good, etc.

I'm happy to say that I was flat-out wrong. The case by Olson and Boies way masterfully argued, and they proved that the anti-marriage crowd really has no clothes, legally speaking.

Given the wording of the judge's decision, and the legal issues raised in this case, I doubt that even the Roberts court could find a rational reason to overturn it. The "strict constructionists" who have used the 14th Amendment for some of their more controversial decisions, would have to tie themselves into hypocritical, pretzel-logic knots to reverse this ruling.

Obama has to see the same thing. I can't claim to be inside his head, so I have no idea if his opposition to gay marriage is due to some deep-seated belief that gay marriage is "wrong" or if it's mostly political lip-service, triangulation, etc. Either way, we know that the guy is eminently rational, and rationality won the day in this decision. My guess is that it will win the day with the president, as well.

Posted by: js_edit | August 5, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

js_edit, that's not true at all, since at least ONE RATIONAL reason is that homosexual couples cannot procreate (while that is not the "only" reason for marriage, it is a pretty basic reason). We also don't KNOW what negative impact this will have on future generations.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

President Obama has said before, and I agree with him, that he does not support gay marriage, but supports civil unions. "Marriage" as defined by most people, is a religious ceremony joining two people together in the eyes of God. If you don't believe that gays should be able to do that, fine, you're free not to recognize their "marriage".
However, aside from the religious aspect, it is also a LEGAL process involving taxation, the ability to make decisions on behalf of your spouse, etc. It is a LEGAL issue. Neither the state nor any other government entity has the right to tell two people that they cannot make such a union. If you choose to not call that union a "marriage", that's between you and your God.

Posted by: MrInternational | August 5, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

I do not believe that the federal government has any business sticking its nose into what is and is not marriage. I also do not think that state governments should be in the business of defining who can marry whom, be it man to woman, woman to woman, or woman to twelve men. Marriage should be a religious/social issue, and civil unions an unbiased legal contractual issue.

Having said that, for all but very recent human history, marriage has been 100% equivalent to "civil unions" -- a combination of religious/social and legal contract enforceable by the state. We are now a society that has gotten so rich that we can start to worry about the social rights of people who decided that they really aren't a woman, but are a man, and want to marry another person who is a now woman, but was a man. I can fully understand how this upsets some people, even though I think it's none of our business.

As for Obama, he is President of the United States, even though he often acts as though he is President of the United Blue States. He is the chief executive, not king, and he rightly seems to believe that this is, astonishingly, an issue that is not up to some Smart Liberals in Washington D.C. to decide.

As for the 14th amendment and construction of the Federal Constitution -- that all depends on what you believe a constitution is. I, for one, think that a constitution is a legal document that creates and empowers government, wherein the people grant limited portions of their sovereign powers to government to exercise in their name. I do not believe that legitimate government can exist outside of a legal agreement such as that, and I do not believe that government should be able to freely "interpret" that agreement to give itself more and more power ad nauseum. I do not believe that elections are some proxy vote where we grant to the incoming legislature/President all of our sovereign powers for the duration of their terms. In that context, an attempt to hew to the intent of the original written compact between the people and the government they empower makes a great deal of sense. If however you do not believe that, if you believe that government is sovereign on its own and that it has full right to exercise every power it wants as a consequence of winning an election, then that viewpoint probably doesn't make sense to you.

In those terms, I find repugnant the idea of a federal judge striking a state constitutional definition of marriage that comports to the vast sweep of human history, using as the vehicle an amendment whose authors most certainly never intended to protect the right of a man to marry a man. This is a political issue still, and best left to politics to sort out, not judicial fiat. People who are so impatient so as to not let society work it out over a reasonable course of time are likely to reap the backlash they sow.

Posted by: itmeanswhatitsays | August 5, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Sociologists have just finished their study of the effects of this court case.

The findings are, well, shocking...

http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2010/08/the_law_of_intended_consequences.php#more?ref=fpblg

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

sbj3, don't you see that's not enough? They are out to ruin "marriage" completely, and if churches won't agree to marry same-sex couples, then they want sanctions like revoking tax-exemptions.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I don't think it should be left up to the States, however, when it comes to regulating civil unions. Equal protection is not determined by what *state* you live in. Suppose this were 1964 Mississippi?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | August 5, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Same Gender marriage is an issue of civil rights. Those who appose the matter are either ignorant, biased or worse bigoted. The worries of gay marriages producing offspring who will become gay is unfounded.

If same gender marriage is shot down as unconstitutional this country may as well go back 200 years where it was legal for one man to own another man and women could not vote. Same mentality.

Posted by: AspirinPlease | August 5, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

js_edit, that's not true at all, since at least ONE RATIONAL reason is that homosexual couples cannot procreate (while that is not the "only" reason for marriage, it is a pretty basic reason). We also don't KNOW what negative impact this will have on future generations.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 2:47

------------------------------

Yawn. Are heterosexual married couple required by law to procreate? If they were, you might have a point.

My wife -- the love of my life -- and I found each other relatively late in life, in our 40s. We have decided not to have children, because it's a lot to think about, having kids in college when you're at retirement age. Is our childless heterosexual marriage somehow threatening future generations? Should we be denied the rights that other married couples have simply because we don't have children?

As far as homosexuals having children goes, what with the available science and the readily available options for adoption, there's no reason why homosexual couples can't have/raise kids.

Lord knows, there are plenty of unmarried heteros who find themselves in a pregnancy situation. More stable married couples out there looking to adopt actually provides more options to abortion.

Posted by: js_edit | August 5, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

@imwis:I find repugnant the idea of a federal judge striking a state constitutional definition of marriage [slavery, women's equality under law] that comports to the vast sweep of human history, using as the vehicle an amendment whose authors most certainly never intended to protect the right of a [black man, woman] man to marry a man [to have equal rights].

You would have fit right in in the 1850's. Fortunately we live in the 21st century, where we don't condone slavery or the subjugation of women [mostly] just because that how grand daddy, administrations, the founding fathers, or Jehovah did it.

@c12:They are out to ruin "marriage" completely

How does someone else's marriage affect you at all? The biggest problem "traditional" marriage faces today is the totally unbiblical practice of divorce, which 1 in 2 marriages end in.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

@imwis:I find repugnant the idea of a federal judge striking a state constitutional definition of marriage [slavery, women's equality under law] that comports to the vast sweep of human history, using as the vehicle an amendment whose authors most certainly never intended to protect the right of a [black man, woman] man to marry a man [to have equal rights].

You would have fit right in in the 1850's. Fortunately we live in the 21st century, where we don't condone slavery or the subjugation of women [mostly] just because that how grand daddy, administrations, the founding fathers, or Jehovah did it.

@c12:They are out to ruin "marriage" completely

How does someone else's marriage affect you at all? The biggest problem "traditional" marriage faces today is the totally unbiblical practice of divorce, which 1 in 2 marriages end in.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

If that's what it takes to keep same-sex marriage outlawed.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

apologies for the double post...

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

srw3 asks, "How does someone else's marriage affect you at all?"

I think the misunderstanding here is that the rightwingers think that the government is going to force them to end their heterosexual marriage and make them marry someone of the same sex.

I just got divorced and I certainly don't want to get remarried right now. Especially to a dude!

Otherwise their protestations are stupid and they should be ignored.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

@c12: Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. 4 For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.

Don't see any justification for torture here? Submitting to government authority (obeying the law) is not condoning torture. Punishment does not equal torture. Care to try again?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

No one is saying the government is forcing same-sex marriages against their will (yet). There is a tipping point though (happening in Europe right now) where procreation becomes an issue.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

srw3 asks, "How does someone else's marriage affect you at all?"

I think the misunderstanding here is that the rightwingers think that the government is going to force them to end their heterosexual marriage and make them marry someone of the same sex.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 3:18

------------------------------

Actually, I think you're wrong. The wingnuts aren't concerned that the government will force them to marry someone of the same sex. They seem to think that if gay marriage is an option, then everyone will go gay! And then there will never be anymore babies!

IMO, it seems to be an argument that comes mostly from male fear and insecurity...either fear/insecurity that your wife might actually be tired of you and find a woman more appealing. Or fear/insecurity that you might like to try a guy, and that would be bad.

People who are secure in themselves and their sexuality -- regardless of what it is -- don't seem to have those fears.

Posted by: js_edit | August 5, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence: "sbj3, don't you see that's not enough? They are out to ruin "marriage" completely, and if churches won't agree to marry same-sex couples, then they want sanctions like revoking tax-exemptions."

Well that simply won't happen. (I am gay and I am not one of "them" to whom you refer.)

If a church does not want to "marry" a same sex couple that is fine by me. If the government no longer had any interest in "marriage" (only domestic partnerships), then I don't understand what standing anyone would have to revoke a church's tax exempt status for not "marrying" someone.

I believe we have a right to enter into domestic partnerships, but not into "marriages." I believe the state has the duty to regulate such partnerships; not "marriages" that would be sanctified by religious institutions.

Posted by: sbj3 | August 5, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

srw3, I'm not sure how many times you want me to point out that "torture" is necessarily included in "crucifixion."

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

sbj3, maybe not you personally, but several people ON THIS THREAD have indeed advocated revoking tax-exemption of churches.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

clawrence - So in Europe they are forcing dudes to marry dudes?

Holy cow are you misinformed.

And that (yet) you added shows that I'm right. You guys really think the Government is going to force you to gay marry!

The kicker is that I was totally joking.

Being a rightwing talk radio personality must be the easiest job in the world. You can just make up whatever nonsense you want to and have faith that your audience is going to believe it, no matter how outlandish it is.

I’d offer to sell you a bridge, but you’d probably take me up on that offer and I don’t want to take advantage of you.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

As to churches losing their tax exemption, I say hogwash.

I'm a licensed reverend and will gladly marry anyone that wants to get married, regardless of age, sex, etc.

It took me all of 30 seconds to be ordained; I did it online so I could officiate at my sisters wedding.

The whole "Churches will lose their status" meme is a red herring.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

@c12:I'm not sure how many times you want me to point out that "torture" is necessarily included in "crucifixion."

Crucifixion was not mentioned in the romans verse you cited, which I have helpfully put in the previous post. Where does it say that Jesus or his dad think crucifixion is consistent to "gods law"?

@sbj3: Don't you get tired of siding with the party of homophobic bigotry? I agree (it may be a first!) that marriage and domestic partnership should be 2 totally separate things, with marriage being strictly a religious compact and domestic partnership a contract recognized by the state. Are you good with the Gods law includes the right for governments to torture people?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

I never said that Europe is forcing that (in fact, they are trying to ENCOURAGE traditional marriage since they are currently below replacement rate). "Yet" is a caveat, just in case, because who could have predicted the Romans feeding Christians to the lions. I hope we don't get there again, but we may.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Same Gender marriage is an issue of civil rights. Those who appose the matter are either ignorant, biased or worse bigoted. The worries of gay marriages producing offspring who will become gay is unfounded.

If same gender marriage is shot down as unconstitutional this country may as well go back 200 years where it was legal for one man to own another man and women could not vote. Same mentality.

Posted by: AspirinPlease | August 5, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Not, it's closer to the mentality of banning polygamy.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Is Helen Wallace posting from Iran? Sure sounds like it.

Posted by: usblues1 | August 5, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

@srw: "@sbj3: Don't you get tired of siding with the party of homophobic bigotry?"

I'm a conservative and member of the Libertarian party. There are quite a few whacko Democrats/progressives out there, too. (I'd bet that the folks at PETA would have something to say about coked-up stimulus monkeys.)

"I agree (it may be a first!) that marriage and domestic partnership should be 2 totally separate things, with marriage being strictly a religious compact and domestic partnership a contract recognized by the state."

Simple solution and it gets Obama off the hook.

"Are you good with the Gods law includes the right for governments to torture people?"

No way I'm touching this one...

Posted by: sbj3 | August 5, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I agreed with Helen, and I am not posting from Iran. Next ad hominem?

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

clawrence - If you honestly think there is any chance that the US government would force anyone to marry anyone you need therapy. Seriously, turn off Glen Beck and your hate radio xenophobe of choice; they aren't doing you any favors.

And why do you want to bring the Romans into it? I'd guess anyone who saw the routine brutality of the gladiator's arena wouldn't be surprised that un-favored groups might be fed to lions, but what does that have to do with anything? If you are trying to prove a point you are failing miserably.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

"Marriage is a social contract, not a right. Marriage as a social contract is intended to provide protections and support for a venture that involves many risks, most of which are not involved in a "gay union," and those that are can be satisfied with a civil partnership."

This is demonstrably false. Same-sex couples own and combine property, raise children, and have the same needs for legal protections and support as opposite-sex couples. Moreover, there are over a thousand federal regualtions and laws that make distinctions based on whether people are married--the tax code is replete with them, for example, and then there are Social Security survivor's benefits and federal benefits. If the gov't is going to stay our of marriage it has to erase all these distinctions or extend them to whatever so-called "separate but equal" equivalent you generous folks are willing to grant to gays. And civil unions really aren't just as good as marriage or obviously you folks wouldn't be clinging to your special status so tightly.

And that is what it is, as Judge Walker said. If gays can get married, you married heterosexuals lose your special state-sanctioned privileged status. You cease to be better than us, and that's what hurts. It is jsut like white privilege, male privilege etc and it is going to go sooner rather than later, as we can see from the many and varied countries that have adopted marriage equality in the last few years.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Clawrence12, it's called logic. Ahmadinejad rules by the Koran; conservatives in the U.S. would like to rule by the Bible. Thus these groups are similar. I prefer we stick to the Constitution.

Posted by: usblues1 | August 5, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I may be repeating myself: none of the Founding Fathers or authors of the Equal Protection Clause would ever have supported same-sex marriage.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who screams "activist judge" at Walker obviously hasnt taken the time to read the opinion (or for that matter the trial transcripts which are all available online.)

The Pro Prop-8 folks produced NADA, ZERO, NO eviddence to support their position. In court they walked away from all the justifications used in the ballot campaign and replaced them with a meme along the line of: "terrible things are going to happen if gay people get married". In when the Judge asked them to name ONE, they couldnt. Not one single solitary example.

Maybe there are good arguments against gay marriage somwhere but the sure as heck wern't any in this trial. "I don't know" and (gay people are bad) because I "read it on the Internet" are the best they could come up with. Kinds of proves the gay marriage thing is a real paper tiger, if great legal minds cant produce one since bad consequence what is left except animus against gay couples?

Posted by: MarcMyWords | August 5, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

"I may be repeating myself: none of the Founding Fathers or authors of the Equal Protection Clause would ever have supported same-sex marriage."

And you know this how? Point me towards the writings of the founding fathers that gives you this intel. You can't? You made it up? You heard it on Glen Beck? Yeah, that is what I thought.

Rightwingers love to talk about the founding fathers, but if you probe them you'll often find they have no idea what they are talking about.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

No "animus" is pointing out the negative consequences of a declining population (some will argue, of course, that there are already too many people on this planet). Just because two experts couldn't convince a homosexual judge -- especially since the State of California abandoned this case and provided no resources to actually defending the will of the people -- doesn't mean it's not true.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Because the punishment for homosexual acts back then was pretty harsh.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

@usblues1: I like to call it the Christianist Taliban theory of biblical rule.

Can't wait to get to the smiting part!

Muslims don't have the market cornered for fundamentalist nutcases trying to force their warped understanding of justice and morality on the rest of the population. We grow our own here in the US and they run for president, start universities, and use their moral litmus tests to illegally populate the justice department with like (closed) minded religious zealots.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

All, my response to David Broder's column today on the broken Senate:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/08/a_question_for_david_broder.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 5, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

srw3, as I said (repeatedly), I don't want to outlaw homosexuals (unlike in Iran).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

nisleib, in 1778 Thomas Jefferson proposed a law in Virginia which "only" contained a punishment of castration for men who engaged in sodomy, however, what was intended by Jefferson as a "liberalization" of the sodomy laws in Virginia at that time was REJECTED by the Virginia Legislature, which continued to prescribe death as the maximum penalty for the crime of sodomy in that state.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

In 1625, Richard Cornish is hanged for sodomy with another man in Virginia. This is the first known death sentence for said crime in the American colonies.

I could keep going.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Clawrence - By all meens, keep going.

Thus far you've named ONE founding father. And the one you've named wanted to LOWER the penalty for sodomy. That doesn't prove your point, it disproves it.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

@clawrence12: what is your point? Jefferson owned slaves too. Jefferson didn't include women as equal under the law. Senators used to be elected by state legislatures. People were brutal to each other in earlier times. So what? Does the fact that the founders were blind to massive inequality and injustice towards large segments of the population justify us acting the same way?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

If Jefferson was the "most liberal" who only advocated CASTRATION, there's no logical way he would have supported same-sex marriage. That was my point.

Worse-case scenario, Obama believes that same-sex marriage is an issue for States to decide. California did so (and our State Supreme Court has ruled). The feds should butt out, no pun intended.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

The founding fathers provided us with an outstanding framework to live in a civilized society, including the three branches of governement and the Constitution. They have held up well as times have changed, and it looks like that is true today. Conservatives cling to their religion, which is fine with me, but it should have no bearing on how the country is governed. Of course, we have a bunch of conservative nut jobs on the Supreme Court thanks to W and the conservative voters, so if it doesn't happen now, it will when those guys are replaced with justices who can accurately interpret and apply the Constitution. Really, Scalia thinks that the cross is not a Christian symbol, it's universal? This is what happens when we mix religion and politics. All I want is the goverment to fix the roads, provide clean water, a safe place to live, and all the freedom it can spare. The conservatives including Scalila want to dictate how to live your life in a good Christian manner, which is ironic and sickening to me. In the 1970's we had way more freedom.

Posted by: usblues1 | August 5, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

With the adoption of its charter in 1632, Maryland becomes the only one of the original 13 colonies in which English law was unquestionably operative from the moment the colony began (death penalty for sodomy). By 1793, Maryland had enacted a unique sodomy law that permitted those convicted of sodomy to be put to work cleaning and repairing streets. Again, it was a crime, so no one back then would have supported same-sex marriage.

I will keep going, to refute the following:

"And you know this how? Point me towards the writings of the founding fathers that gives you this intel. You can't? You made it up? You heard it on Glen Beck? Yeah, that is what I thought.

Rightwingers love to talk about the founding fathers, but if you probe them you'll often find they have no idea what they are talking about."

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 4:17 PM

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

We have no declining population issues in the US, and if immigration continues to be allowed, we have no problems at all in the foreseeable future. Or did you perchance mean "declining white population," clawrence12?

And again, what's the point of reciting conditions in 1789? Women couldn't vote, a married woman became her husband's chattel, slavery was legal, and slaves couldn't marry regardless of gender.

One of Walker's points was that since marriage has evolved from a vehicle for male domination into a partnership of equals, gender no longer has the same importance in marriage. Marriage equality is just the next step, like allowing married women to own property or apply for credit in their own names. But of course traditionalists like clawrence12 are presumably more comfortable with the way things were in 1789.

Posted by: Mimikatz | August 5, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

clawrence - Was Jefferson the most liberal? You don't know that.

And you don't know what he would have supported. If it were possible he might have supported gay marriage, but in those days that was out of the question. So he supported a lessening of the punishment for sodomy.

Politics is, after all, the art of the possible. Once elected Obama never tried for a universal health care plan, even though he probably wanted one. He never even campaigned for universal health care. He knew universal health care was not politically achievable, therefore he took a baby step.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Clawrence - You realize your post at 5:05 doesn't even mention any of the founding fathers?

"Again, it was a crime, so no one back then would have supported same-sex marriage."

You are assuming facts not in evidence. I don't care what the laws were in the 1600, that is not the question.

You boldly state that you know what the founding fathers wanted, but you can't point to anything that backs up your claims. Teh best you can do is point to the laws of the 1600 and 1700 and say, "Look, they thought gays were icky."

Totally irrelevant rightwing nonsense.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

In 1648, Elizabeth Johnson becomes the first woman known to be prosecuted for sexual relations with another woman, in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. By 1697, the new Massachusetts sodomy law refers to sodomy as being “against the very light of nature,” the first statutory reference to nature in a sodomy law.

In 1656, the New Haven Colony (later merged into Connecticut) adopted the first law in what became the United States specifically to outlaw sex between two women. While there are no recorded prosecutions under the law, it is a capital offense at the time. In 1821, a revision of the State’s colonial-era sodomy law reduces the penalty from death to life imprisonment and, probably unwittingly makes two other changes to the law. First, it is worded uniquely that either sex can be the perpetrator, but only a male can be a victim. Second, it refers to “carnal knowledge of a man,” thus probably becoming the first State to explictly outlaw fellatio.

In 1863, the Connecticut Supreme Court is the first in the nation to find that deadly force is allowable to prevent an act of sodomy. The Connecticut Supreme Court also affirms a lower court in granting damages to a man for the injury his teenage son suffered from a sexual relationship with another teenage boy.

In 1682, the criminal code enacted in the Quaker colony of Pennsylvania sets the maximum penalty for sodomy at six months in jail, the only non-capital sodomy law in the American colonies. This leniency ends when Quakers lose control of the colony. In 1700, Pennsylvania’s new sodomy law -- limited only to men -- set the penalty for a first offense at life imprisonment, with a flogging possible every three months during the first year of imprisonment and, if married, he was to be castrated and his wife offered a divorce. In 1722, Pennsylvania enactted the first law in the colonies requiring the posting of a bond for the good behavior of convicted sodomites being brought into the colony.

In 1786, Pennsylvania becomes the first state to abolish the death penalty for sodomy. Delaware was actually the last State in the nation to eliminate time in the pillory for acts of sodomy (1905).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

No, Mimikatz, I want a temporary moratorium on all immigration into the U.S. And the reason I am quoting laws from our Founding Fathers (and before) is because someone laughably thinks that they would have supported same-sex marriage -- or admits that such support would have been "out of the question" in those days -- I'm not sure which now!

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

clawrence - Since you obviously can't prove what the founding father's wanted why don't you just admit you know nothing?

On the positive side I'd say that, as you point out, since the anti sodomy laws have gradually lessoned over the years that the founding father's must have wanted gay people to marry.

It seems a much more logical conclusion than the silliness you are posting.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Oh sure, nisleib, it was a CAPITAL OFFENSE at the time, but your "logic" infers that they all secretly supported same-sex marriage!

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

I proved that, at least, ONE Founding Father proposed a law against sodomy that included castration. It is indeed some different type of "logic" than I am familiar with that gets from that point to "the founding father's [SIC] must have wanted gay people to marry."

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Clawrence - You keep posting links that show the anti sodomy laws were WORSE before the country was founded and got better over time.

If anything, that shows that the founding fathers must have been more tolerant than those that came before them.

In any case, in no way whatsoever have you shown what the founding fathers wanted. The only post that was even relevant was the one that showed Jefferson tried to lesson the punishments for sodomy. If you had any critical thinking skills you would realize that means Jefferson was a tolerant sort that was sympathetic to the cause of homosexuals.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Maybe this is above his pay grade too? BTW: Judge Walker is also a homosexual:

http://articles.sfgate.com/2010-02-07/bay-area/17848482_1_same-sex-marriage-sexual-orientation-judge-walker

IMPEACH WALKER!!!

Posted by: clawrence12
........................

so you're saying that straight judges should be impeached when they rule FOR discrimination?

LOL!

Posted by: newagent99 | August 5, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

This country has gotten so lazy, so divorced from the day-to-day survival instinct back in our founding, that silly things like same-sex marriage is actually a serious topic of debate. Here are the other Founding Fathers I am referring to who obviously had more important matters to consider, none of whom ever worked for the repeal of capital punishment for sodomy (so feel free to lie, I mean use your special "logic" about all of them "supporting" same-sex marriage too):

George Read, Caesar Rodney, Thomas McKean, George Clymer, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Morris, John Morton, Benjamin Rush, George Ross, James Smith, James Wilson, George Taylor, John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Robert Paine, Elbridge Gerry, Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton, Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery, Lewis Morris, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, William Floyd, Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton, Richard Henry Lee, Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton, Benjamin Harrison, George Wythe, Thomas Nelson, Jr., William Hooper, John Penn, Joseph Hewes, Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton, Thomas Lynch, Jr., Thomas Heyward, Jr., Abraham Clark, John Hart, Francis Hopkinson, Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Samuel Huntington, Roger Sherman, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott, Charles Carroll, Samuel Chase, Thomas Stone, William Paca, George Washington, James Madison, John Jay, Patrick Henry, and Alexander Hamilton.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Fine, nisleib, to show you I am a "tolerant sort" as well, I hereby propose castration as the punishment for all men engaged in sodomy. Happy now?

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

srw3:

Ending slavery required a federal constitutional amendment. Giving women the right to vote required an explicit federal constitutional amendment: the 14th amendment's equal protection clause was not deemed to extend that right. Ending the poll tax to vote required an amendment, as again the 14th amendment wasn't sufficient. The legal age to vote, again, an amendment. These were all major changes that required political action, required a super majority of the Congress and 3/4 of the states to approve. Or war even. They were not made into law by the action of a federal judge.

Permitting people of the same gender to marry and be treated exactly the same as a heterosexual couple is a big social change. It should work its way through the political process. I will repeat, it is repugnant to have a solitary federal judge invalidate a constitutional change made by the people of California through its legal mechanisms to amend its constitution, when that constitutional provision does not violate a clear prohibition in the federal constitution. If the equal protection clause was not sufficient to permit women to vote, how is it sufficient to do this? Oh. Yes. It has "adapted."

To borrow from Obama, let me be clear: I think that men should be able to enter into legal unions with women, women with women, men with men, or a woman with twelve men. But just because I think that, it doesn't mean I'm ok with the political process of change being hijacked by judicial fiat. The ends do not always justify the means. Everybody in this nation has become so partisan, so damn-the-means focused on getting a 50% +1 majority, it is tearing us apart. Our federal constitution erected a barrier to amendments that requires broad support for a reason, and the reason isn't to let judges find penumbras and doctrines to essentially provide government with unfettered and unlimited power to do whatever it likes, nor to substitute judicial fiat for the legislative and political process within the legal bounds of our constitutions.

If there were a movement to amend the federal constitution to require states to recognize marriages among legally competent adults, period, I'd be all for it. But there's no such amendment, and this judge substituting a questionable application of the 14th amendment in this scenario, striking the will of the majority of the citizens of the state of California, is wrong, even if it winds up producing a "good" result.

Posted by: itmeanswhatitsays | August 5, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

No, newagent99, I am not saying that straight judges should be impeached when they rule FOR discrimination. Thanks for asking though.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Clawrence - so you just cut and past a list of founding fathers and you think that proves something?

You really should take a critical thinking/logic course.

This discussion is like arguing with an infant. You make assertions you can't even come close to backing up then you post irrelevant factoids that do more harm to your nonsense argument than good. Then you list a bunch of names and ascribe to them thoughts that exist only in the minds of right-wingers with highly limited intellects.

Here is a fact that your nonsensical postings have made clear: 1) The laws against Sodomy have gradually lessened over the years 2) You make things up 3) You know less about the founding fathers than Sarah Palin

If I were you I'd find whoever it was that was in charge of your high school (assuming you made it to high school) and slap them in the face for doing such a poor job of educating you.

Posted by: nisleib | August 5, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

itmeanswhatitsays, it was a sham trial. Our Governor and Attorney General provided ZERO support to defending the case or will of the people.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Clarence12,

Thomas Jefferson also owned slaves, thought african americans were inferior, and did not believe women should vote or hold office. Do you agree with those sentiments as well?

If you think Jefferson was wrong on those above topics, can you concede he may have been wrong about sodomy laws and homosexuals in general?

If you believe he held the correct views, well....

Posted by: PhilV1 | August 5, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

@itmeanswhatitsays : Ending Jim Crow didn't take a constitutional amendment. The voting rights act was not a constitutional amendment. Ending school desegregation was a court decision. Are they somehow less valid or necessary because they didn't take a constitutional amendment to become the law?

Oh and the poll tax amendment...

The 1966 Supreme Court case Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections extended this explicit enactment as a matter of judicial interpretation of a more general provision, ruling that the imposition of a poll tax in state elections violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

The Harper ruling was one of several that rely on the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment rather than the more direct provision of the 15th Amendment.

Individual rights are not something that should be decided by majority rule. Its not legislation to pass a spending bill. If we put segregation to a vote in the south it would have won in an landslide.

So the 14th amendment did extend to the poll tax according to the courts...

You know the vast majority of people in California were for internment of Japanese during WWII, (incidentally, white californians got their property at below rock bottom prices as they were in no position not to sell). Does that make it a just decision? Ever hear of the tyranny of the majority?

I bet you could get a majority of people in alabama to vote for a law that women shouldn't work in "male" jobs. Does that make it a policy that should be put into law?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Of course, he (and I) may be wrong. But so are those who would say that Thomas Jefferson would have supported an African-American or woman being elected President. That was my point above.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Again, back on topic, Obama believes that same-sex marriage is an issue for States to decide. California did so (and our State Supreme Court has ruled). The feds should butt out.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

@itmeanswhatitsays: If the equal protection clause was not sufficient to permit women to vote, how is it sufficient to do this? Oh. Yes. It has "adapted."

Look at the poll tax. It was deemed necessary but has in fact been superseded by the 14th amendment in support of several judicial rulings.

And school and military desegregation, if put to a vote would have failed. Does that make them somehow invalid?

I bet right after 911, several states would have voted to force Muslims to register with the government, if given the chance.

Majority rule is not usually the best way to decide the rights of a minority.

"same-sex marriage[dejure and defacto segregation] is an issue for States to decide. California did so (and our State Supreme Court has ruled). The feds should butt out." This is exactly what the segregationists said in the south so you are in the company you deserve.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

@c12: itmeanswhatitsays, it was a sham trial. Our Governor and Attorney General provided ZERO support to defending the case or will of the people.

Are you saying that the prop 8 backers didn't have enough money to mount an adequate legal argument? REALLY? I don't recall any of their legal team arguing that they lacked the resources necessary to mount an effective case. If they did, I'd love to see the evidence for this...

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Ad hominem attacks are unnecessary.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Two vs. fifteen experts, not to mention the vast legal team on the plaintiffs' side.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Their legal team didn't argue either that Judge Walker's homosexuality effected his ruling. That doesn't mean that it didn't. And I have no problem arguing that is not "ad hominem" but rather direct bias for which the Judge should have recused himself.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Muslims do not favor Gay Marriage.

Posted by: FraudObama | August 5, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elana Kagan should also recuse herself from hearing the appeal on this case.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

@c12: And I have no problem arguing that is not "ad hominem" but rather direct bias for which the Judge should have recused himself.

Why would a gay judge be more biased against prop 8 than a straight judge would be biased for prop 8? Nonsensical...

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Because the homosexual judge is put in the position of defending against his sexual orientation being attacking. Since ruling FOR Prop. 8 would not impact a straight judge's marriage, he or she would not automatically be biased. Just for the sake of appearances, Judge Walker should have recused himself (then no one could have argued that the decision was biased).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

being attackED, not attacking.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

@U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elana Kagan should also recuse herself from hearing the appeal on this case.

Why is that, exactly?

Should she recuse herself on any cases that deal with women, Jews, etc.? I don't see the avowedly religious Scalia, Alito, Thomas, and Kennedy recusing themselves from 1st amendment cases involving religion....

Where does it end?

"Two vs. fifteen experts, not to mention the vast legal team on the plaintiffs' side."

You can't be serious. The religious right doesn't have enough money to mount an effective legal case? REALLY? Maybe they should have gotten that expert witness from florida. He could travel with his boytoy. Probably they did't have more experts because there are almost no credentialed mental health professionals that believe homosexuality is some kind of mental disorder.

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Muslims do not favor Gay Marriage.

Posted by: FraudObama | August 5, 2010

----------------

All the more reason to support gay marriage, don't you think?

Posted by: js_edit | August 5, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

@c12:Since ruling FOR Prop. 8 would not impact a straight judge's marriage, he or she would not automatically be biased.

Wait a second...isn't one of the main arguments against gay marriage that it somehow lessens, demeans, degrades, and/or destroys opposite sex marriage. Didn't they make this very argument in court.

From the ruling "Denial of same sex marriage PRESERVES MARRIAGE." So allowing gay marriage must somehow degrade marriage. This was argument 1 from the defense.

"By institutionalizing the relationship that has the inherent capacity to transmit life — that between a man and a woman — marriage symbolizes and engenders respect for the transmission of human life....To change the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples ***would destroy its capacity to function in the ways outlined above***, because it could no longer represent the inherently procreative relationship of opposite-sex pair-bonding. It would be to change the essence and nature of marriage as the principal societal institution establishing the norms that govern procreation...Redefining marriage to include same-sex couples would affect its cultural meaning and function and, in doing so, damage its ability and, thereby, society's capacity, to protect the inherently procreative relationship and the children who result from it, whether those children's' future sexual orientation proves to be homosexual or heterosexual.."--http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/homosexuality/ho0063.html#02

Hoist by your own petard....

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

gee c12, you've gotten awfully quiet...petard got your tongue?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

If the Bill of Rights applies to all the States, making the Federal Laws a mandate upon the States, then why is the Definition of Marriage Act (DOMA) applicable to the States? If DOMA is binding upon the States, then why is it not enforced in nulifying the "homosexual marriages" which have been allowed in some states?

Any competent legal reply would be appreciated! Those who are personally bias and tainted in their own philosophies, please restrain yourselves from responding.

Posted by: Jordan48 | August 5, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

No, I'm just doing real work. Yesterday's decision did not do anything to lessen, demean, degrade, and/or destroy MY opposite sex marriage -- I've never argued that -- I also don't go out murdering people, but I still know that's wrong. BTW: Justice-Designate Kagan is rumored to be a lesbian, which is why I think she should recuse herself in this case.

Bottom line, we are not going to convince each other to change our minds. Luckily, for me at least, Obama position on same-sex marriage is sustainable. My concern is if he changes his mind. It's society as a whole, and generations to come, that will reap what has been sown.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Jordan48, I could certainly give you a competent legal reply (having graduated from law school, passed the California bar exam on the first try, and practiced law know for almost 14 years now). I will instead recuse myself and give you the cites to a few of the court cases you can read yourself upholding DOMA:

In re Kandu, 315 B.R. 123, 138 (Bankr. D. Wash. 2004) and Wilson v. Ake 18 FLW Fed D 175 (2005)

The U.S. Supreme Court has, so far, declined to hear any appeal of those decisions.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 5, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

shorter c12: run away, run away. Your argument about either the presiding judge and Kagan being somehow more biased (you have presented absolutely no evidence that Kagan is a lesbian BTW) than a straight judge is laughable on its face and you won't admit it.

"Yesterday's decision did not do anything to lessen, demean, degrade, and/or destroy MY opposite sex marriage -- I've never argued that "

No, but it was one of the prime arguments that the prop 8 proponents made, and it was thrown out.

"To change the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples ***would destroy its capacity to function in the ways outlined above***"

Now that the argument has been totally discredited by the court, you want to argue that there is nothing about gay marriage that is bad for straight marriage therefore straight judges are less biased than gay ones. If there is no detriment to straight marriage, why oppose it?

Posted by: srw3 | August 5, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure which is more amazing, Greg's able demonstration of Obama's colossal dishonesty and hypocrisy or the stupidity and ignorance of the liberal sunderheads who think Walker's ruling has anything to do with law or any basis in the Constitution. If it stands, our republic and our liberty are at an end, and we are nothing but slaves of a tyrannical and perverted ruling class of radical enemies of civilization.

Posted by: quarterback1 | August 5, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

quarterback1:

Agreed. As was pointed out, the Constitution does not protect same-sex marriage.

Posted by: JakeD2 | August 5, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

I fully support gay rights and their right to have sex the way that they love to have sex. It is about eliminating as many of Satins Demons as possible as soon as possible, and the spread of AIDs is good for them. I say have at it, baby! Do it! As much and as often, and with as many other fags as possible. Go fags!

Posted by: wilsonccjr | August 5, 2010 9:25 PM | Report abuse

What an irony! In a concurrent blog post Sargent takes David Broder to task for being insufficiently aggressive in calling things a they are while here he dances around the fact that President Obama has come down squarely on two sides to the same matter. Which makes him a hypocrite covering for another hypocrite, doesn't it?

Posted by: grohlik | August 5, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

no, it's not sustainable, and I should think Obama would have abandoned the position I THOUGHT he took in order to get elected.

Posted by: daphne5 | August 6, 2010 1:14 AM | Report abuse


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Posted by: sharonjo6 | August 6, 2010 2:56 AM | Report abuse

srw3, I said there's no detriment to MY specific marriage, not marriage in general or, especially, in the future. As for the allegation I "ran away" maybe you can post 24/7, but I can't. I was the only one here all day yesterday DEFENDING Obama's position on same-sex marriage. As for Kagan being a lesbian, feel free to search Google using those two words (there are only about 3,450,000 hits).

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 6, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Sustainable? It's not even COHERENT!

If he wants more of my money, volunteer work, and vote in 2012, he better stop insulting my intelligence with this nonsense. I refuse to put up with it again. Period.

Posted by: uh_huhh | August 6, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Greg, good article.

@clawrence12, you are an idiot. I wish I could figure out how to get the last 10 minutes of my life back from reading your inane, misinformed, and absolutely preposterous postings.

Posted by: redgrifn | August 6, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

redgrifn, next time don't bother responding at all.

Posted by: clawrence12 | August 6, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Obama's incoherent position on gay marriage wouldn't bother me so much if he were making a serious effort to keep his major promises to gay and lesbian voters: repeal the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act," repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. On all three of these issues, the President has been entirely passive.

There has been no progress on DOMA repeal on ENDA. The President has not put any pressure on Congress to act. What little progress there has been on DADT is no thanks to the President. Congressional leaders forced the President's hand. Obama wanted to delay a vote on DADT until after the DoD study is complete. The study is not to be finished until December, and this Congress can't get anything important done in a month. So the President was effectively trying to push the DADT vote off until 2011, when the Republicans will have more seats.

Posted by: equalrights | August 6, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

"if churches won't agree to marry same-sex couples, then they want sanctions like revoking tax-exemptions."

Actually, I'd like to see their tax exempt status revoked because they don't keep their noses out of politics.

Posted by: ME90275 | August 9, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

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