Saturday, November 15, 2008

"Enemies List" Seeks Intimidation of Yes on 8 Backers

I can't reiterate this strongly enough: The left's intense political reaction to the majority vote approving California's Proposition 8 demonstrates the markers that have been laid down in the battle for America's soul.

Not only have gay marriage activists taken to the streets in record numbers to protest the popular vote, the movement's campaign of intimidation is a classic case of cultural and political authoritarianism. As Time
reports, the left is using an "enemies list" to indiscriminately target those who have used conventional means of legitimate participation to affect the democratic political process:

In addition to protests, gay activists have begun publishing lists online exposing individuals and organizations who have donated money in support of Proposition 8. On AntiGayBlacklist.com, individuals who gave money toward Proposition 8 are publicized, with readers urged not to patronize their businesses or services. The list of donors was culled from data on ElectionTrack.com, which follows all contributions of over $1,000 and all contributions of over $100 given before October 17. Dentists, accountants, veterinarians and the like who gave a few thousand dollars to the cause are listed alongside major donors like the Container Supply Co., Inc. of Garden Grove, Calif., which gave $250,000.
The next stage of the fight over gay marriage will be the California Supreme Court.

Four groups have filed legal briefs seeking to overturn the initiative: the Asian Pacific American Legal Center, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund

As this morning's Los Angeles Times reports, the Court is hesitant to strike down Prop 8 because members of the judiciary in California are elected after initial appointment to office:

Television and radio media cornered Chief Justice Ronald M. George [at a Berkeley judicial roundtable this week], who wrote the marriage ruling, and repeatedly tried to get him to discuss Proposition 8. He explained over and over again that judges were not permitted to comment on pending cases.

While the justices lunched with panelists and the audience, Ohio Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer warned that special interest groups were increasingly threatening the independence of the judiciary. Six state Supreme Court justices were ousted by voters this year after nasty campaigns by special interests, he said.

Opponents of same-sex marriages have talked of recalling members of the state high court if they overturn Proposition 8. Although George did not refer to those threats, he complained of the "increasingly partisan nature of judicial elections."

"We are keenly aware that we share with other state courts a vulnerability to forces that focus not on impartiality but on whether judges, like officeholders in our sister branches of government, should be responsive to majoritarian, political or special-interest preferences," he said.
With this in mind, Yes on 8 forces should recall that in 1986, California's ultra-liberal Chief Justice Rose Elizabeth Bird was removed from office in a stunning repudiation of her judicial record.

Justice Bird, a staunch opponent of the death penalty, never upheld an execution, voting to overturn death penalty sentences 61 times.
As the New York Times wrote in a 1999 obituary, "To this day, Ms. Bird's name remains a kind of reflexive shorthand in California for ''soft-on-crime liberal.'''

Thus, the Yes on 8 majority is not without means to beat back the authoritarian hordes now taking to the streets in a
campaign of intimidation and violence.

17 comments:

shoprat said...

In the comparisons between the Black Civil Rights movement and its gay counter part are noteworthy, especially at this point.

In the Blacks fight for civil rights it was the status quo that was largely violent while the most successful civil rights activists turn the other cheek.

With the gays it's the other way around. So much for moral equivalency.

Donald Douglas said...

Thanks Shoprat!

Philippe Ohlund said...

We should all have a dream for our lives and work towards that dream.

Donald Douglas said...

Thanks Philippe!

Philippe Ohlund said...

You're welcome, Donald! :-)

repsac3 said...

Very few incidents of violence or vandalism, and any there are should be dealt with criminally, whoever the guilty parties are.

Just as the yes people had the opportunity to voice their opinion on the subject (& thereby affect the lives of many of the no folks), the no folks should (& do) have the same opportunity to speak their minds, even if doing so affects those yes voters' wallets.

I'm sure it is intimidating to risk losing your customers over taking a particular stand on a political/social issue. I would think that it would be intimidating to have your state sanctioned marriage turned illegal by a simple majority vote, as well...

Mark In Irvine said...

If Prop 8 is defective because it purports to "revise" the constitution, rather than "amend" it (a distinction which frankly escapes me, though I haven't read up on the issue), I see nothing wrong with the legal challenge.

I voted against Prop 8 because in my view it purports to grant and deny civil rights based on religious criteria. The explanation for the denial of civil marriage to m/m and f/f couples is taken from the Bible: it doesn't get any more religious than that.

In my view, if we allow religion to become the basis for civil law in this country, we open the door to encroachment of any and all religion into the law. Mostly I can live with Christianity and Judaism as inspiration for laws, as long as nobody tries to tell me to lay off bacon, except my MD, to whom I guess I have to listen.

All kidding aside, one of the most important/significant things that has made this country great is the freedom of religion guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution: nobody can tell me to adhere to a faith or which one I should adhere to.

Prop 8 purports to deny a civil right to people who pay taxes just like you and I do, based on whom they love. You wouldn't sit still for anybody to tell you whom you could or could not spend your life with, because it's nobody's effing business but yours. Prop 8 purports to tell people they can't have the same recognition for their choice of life partner that my wife and I can.

The proponents of Prop 8 would have you believe that m/m and f/f marriage will some how interfere with your religion and your marriage. Neither is the case. None of these f/f or m/m couples is trying to force your Church or Temple to marry anybody, but Prop 8 is trying to interfere.

People who trespass into other people's churches to cause anarchy, by the way, can and should be held criminally liable for it.

I support the effort to challenge the legality of Prop 8. And I approve this message.

Anonymous said...

Mark in Irvine, you would be right to be concerned with Prop 8 if it was propagated on a purely religious basis. Unfortunately for that argument, it was not. The People and the State have compelling interest in determining which legal contracts an unions are to be sanctioned and recongnized. The state acts on this authority when it prohibits marriages between people of which one or both are not of a certain age, and also prohibits marriages between more than two parties (polygamy etc.) The State, most clearly by the popular vote of the people who enforce and legitimize the State's constitution, have set guidelines for marriage based on the basic requirements that it be a union of only 2 parties, of opposite gender, and appropriate age. People who experience homosexual attractions, as I have in the past, have no fewer rights to marry someone who meets those requirements than a heterosexual couple. They just simply do not have any man-made "right" to enter into a state sanctioned "marriage" contract with anyone who does not meet those basic requirements. This is not a civil rights issue; the North American Man-Boy Love Association also considers their efforts to legalize marriage and sexual relations with underage boys as a "civil rights" issue, but just because they claim that "right" does not mean the govt. or people will grant it. The same is said for polygamist Mormon fundamentalists who are clearly hoping that the courts overturn all bans on "same-sex marriages" because they know that it will set a legal precedent that with time will be unable to prohibit their desire for multiple spouses. In fact, for them, they feel their religious rights are already being restricted because they cannot practice their faith as they choose; perhaps they have even more of a legal case than the same-sex "rights" activists?

Beyond that, the same-sex lobby has already proven to be poor and tyrannical stewards of power in MA where the state has gone from simply allowing such unions to occur to actually promoting that lifestyle in religiously intolerant ways. They are considering hate crimes legislation to limit religious speech on the subject and recently jailed a father after he refused to leave his child's school until they agreed to exempt the child from same sex "diversity" education. This is a frightening example of religious discrimination and parental rights violations; no doubt we would expect the same to come from CA, especially in San Francisco where the City govt. repeatedly propogates same-sex relationships and intimidates dissenting religious organizations.

This prohibition is not a religious issue, and it is not an abridgement by any previously recognized "right." THis is a case of a special interest group demanding a right that would set a disturbing legal precedent and using intimidation to silence peceful opposition. Be sure that if they succeed in their goals groups like NAMBLA and polygamist will have a strong legal leg to stand on to challenge any criterion for civil unions and marriages. It is a matter of fact that not all who voted for the ban did so using the Bible as their motivation, and while some did, as they are certainly allowed to do so as to follow their religious convictions, it was also Jews, Mormons, Muslims, Hindus and even non-religious individuals who recognize the alarming contitutional crisis and possible religious expression ramifications involved.

On another note, the despicable agression and disrespect some same-sex activists have employed to protest the publically approved ban (which is perfectly appropriate and legal under California's constitution, as it pertains to what the People of CA will recognize as a govt. sanctioned marriage) displays the dangerous quality of their character. They seek to limit and silence others' freedom of religious expression and speech by showing hate and agression to people, such as the Mormon church that was recently stormed and in reality restricted from carrying on their religious service. Lets see, which side is showing violence, hate, and bigotry? It is both despicable and should be criminal, so that they recognize that the 2nd Amendment protects the rights of others to free peaceful religious expression and speech, whether they agree with that expression and speech or not.

From Long Beach said...

I agree with the post left by Anonymous this morning at 9:57. (except I thought it was the 1st Amendment?)

And would like to add the following from an article:

"Marriage is not primarily a contract between individuals to ratify their affections and provide for mutual obligations. Rather, marriage and family are vital instruments for rearing children and teaching them to become responsible adults. While governments did not invent marriage, throughout the ages governments of all types have recognized and affirmed marriage as an essential institution in preserving social stability and perpetuating life itself. Hence, regardless of whether marriages were performed as a religious rite or a civil ceremony, married couples in almost every culture have been granted special benefits aimed primarily at sustaining their relationship and promoting the environment in which children are reared. A husband and a wife do not receive these benefits to elevate them above any other two people who may share a residence or social tie, but rather in order to preserve, protect, and defend the all-important institutions of marriage and family.

It is true that some couples who marry will not have children, either by choice or because of infertility, but the special status of marriage is nonetheless closely linked to the inherent powers and responsibilities of procreation, and to the inherent differences between the genders. Co-habitation under any guise or title is not a sufficient reason for defining new forms of marriage.

High rates of divorce and out-of-wedlock births have resulted in an exceptionally large number of single parents in American society. Many of these single parents have raised exemplary children; nevertheless, extensive studies have shown that in general a husband and wife united in a loving, committed marriage provide the optimal environment for children to be protected, nurtured, and raised. This is not only because of the substantial personal resources that two parents can bring to bear on raising a child, but because of the differing strengths that a father and a mother, by virtue of their gender, bring to the task. As the prominent sociologist David Popenoe has said:

The burden of social science evidence supports the idea that gender differentiated parenting is important for human development and that the contribution of fathers to childrearing is unique and irreplaceable.

Popenoe explained that:

. . . The complementarity of male and female parenting styles is striking and of enormous importance to a child’s overall development. It is sometimes said that fathers express more concern for the child’s longer-term development, while mothers focus on the child’s immediate well-being (which, of course, in its own way has everything to do with a child’s long-term well-being). What is clear is that children have dual needs that must be met: one for independence and the other for relatedness, one for challenge and the other for support.

Social historian David Blankenhorn makes a similar argument in his book Fatherless America. In an ideal society, every child would be raised by both a father and a mother."

From Long Beach said...

Also, it isn't very respectful or civil to protest outside a person's business so they are hurt financially as the opponents to the marriage amendment have done.

They also aren't respectful when they made phone calls threatening to hurt a business if they don't "fire" or "distance" themselves from an employee because that employee supported a cause they believe in. That is discrimination. Those are scare tactics and really have no place in our society. Trying to force or silence people isn't respectful or civil.

Let's engage in honest conversation and American politics of talking to each other and our elected officials rather than personal or religious attacks that do nothing more than cause more division and destruction.

Mark In Irvine said...

I'm not buying the arguments about religion and procreation, and the goal of "protecting marriage". M/F couples who cannot or choose not to procreate are given the tax and other civil law benefits, because their mutual support and companionship is deemed to be good for the people as individuals and for society as a whole. M/M and F/F couples (not all, of course) can provide the same mutual support and companionship and there is no good reason NOT to give them the the tax and other civil law benefits ... no "good reason" other than the religious argument and the procreation argument.

On another point, there have been several challenges to the validity of Prop 8 on Constitutional grounds, centering on the distinction between "revision" and "amendment" of the Constitution, which I only incompletely understand at this point. I for one would be happy if Prop 8 fails the Constitutional test, because I think the discrimination Prop 8 would legalize is a terrible thing for a free society to inflict on its citizens.

I'm not worried about M/M and F/F marriage leading to more incest or bestiality or any of the other things in the so-called conservative side's "parade of terribles" trotted out to scare people into voting for discrimination: there will always be weirdos who want to shack up with their dogs or cousins, and the people who are harmed by attitudes like that embodied in Prop 8 are not the dog and cousin lovers.

If y'all REALLY wanted to protect marriage, you'd try to outlaw divorce. Of course, nobody would stand for that, so it is easier to pick on a minority that has been the target of antipathy for a long time. A lot like black people in this country were for a long time (also, greatly based on Biblical texts).

Mark In Irvine said...

p.s. NAMBLA is disgusting and if any of its "members" (no pun intended) step across the line protection kids, I say throw their disgusting arses into jail and throw away the key. NAMBLA people are pedophile perverts IMHO.

Susan said...

Here is how the court said it in Wilson v. Ake ( a Florida federal case)

As the Court noted above, because Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to enter into a same-sex marriage and because DOMA does not create a suspect classification, the constitutionality of DOMA is reviewed under the rational basis test. Under rational basis review, this Court must determine whether the challenged legislation is rationally related to a legitimate state interest. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818 (citing Heller v. Doe, 50 U.S. 307, 313-14 (1993)). "In areas of social and economic policy, a statutory classification that neither proceeds along suspect lines nor infringes fundamental constitutional rights must be upheld against equal protection challenge if there is any reasonably conceivable state of facts that could provide a rational basis for the classification." FCC v. Beach Communications, Inc., 580 U.S. 307, 313 (1993). Rational basis review is "very deferential to the legislature, and does not permit this Court to interject or substitute its own personal views of DOMA or same-sex marriage." Kandu at 145. This presumption of validity remains true "even if the law seems unwise or works to the disadvantage of a particular group, or if the rationale for it seems tenuous." Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818 (quoting Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620, 632 (1996)).

[36] The burden in on the Plaintiffs to negate "every conceivable basis which might support [the legislation], whether or not the basis has a foundation in the record." Id. at 818, (quoting Heller 50 U.S. at 320-21). The United States has "no obligation to produce evidence to sustain the rationality of a statutory classification." Id. (quoting Heller, 50 U.S. at 320). "A statutory classification fails rational-basis review only when it `rests on grounds wholly irrelevant to the achievement of the State's objective.'" Heller, 50 U.S. at 324 (quoting Holt Civic Club v. City of Tuscaloosa, 439 U.S. 60, 71 (1978)).

[37] The United States asserts that DOMA is rationally related to two legitimate governmental interests. First, the government argues that DOMA fosters the development of relationships that are optimal for procreation, thereby encouraging the "stable generational continuity of the United States." (Memorandum in Support of Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. # 39), pp. 15-16). DOMA allegedly furthers this interest by permitting the states to deny recognition to same-sex marriages performed elsewhere and by adopting the traditional definition of marriage for purposes of federal statutes. Second, DOMA "encourage[s] the creation of stable relationships that facilitate the rearing of children by both of their biological parents." (Memorandum in Support of Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. # 39), pp. 15-16). The government argues that these stable relationships encourage the creation of stable families that are well suited to nurturing and raising children.

[38] Plaintiffs offer little to rebut the government's argument that DOMA is rationally related to the government's proffered legitimate interests. Rather, Plaintiffs repeatedly urge the Court to apply the more rigid strict scrutiny analysis.

[39] Although this Court does not express an opinion on the validity of the government's proffered legitimate interests, it is bound by the Eleventh Circuit's holding that encouraging the raising of children in homes consisting of a married mother and father is a legitimate state interest. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 819-20. DOMA is rationally related to this interest. Moreover, Plaintiffs have failed to satisfy their burden of establishing that DOMA fails rational basis review. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818-19; Kandu, 315 B.R. at 148.*fn12 Accordingly, the United States' motion to dismiss is granted.*fn13

[40]

Susan said...

Here is how the court said it in Wilson v. Ake ( a Florida federal case)

As the Court noted above, because Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to enter into a same-sex marriage and because DOMA does not create a suspect classification, the constitutionality of DOMA is reviewed under the rational basis test. Under rational basis review, this Court must determine whether the challenged legislation is rationally related to a legitimate state interest. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818 (citing Heller v. Doe, 50 U.S. 307, 313-14 (1993)). "In areas of social and economic policy, a statutory classification that neither proceeds along suspect lines nor infringes fundamental constitutional rights must be upheld against equal protection challenge if there is any reasonably conceivable state of facts that could provide a rational basis for the classification." FCC v. Beach Communications, Inc., 580 U.S. 307, 313 (1993). Rational basis review is "very deferential to the legislature, and does not permit this Court to interject or substitute its own personal views of DOMA or same-sex marriage." Kandu at 145. This presumption of validity remains true "even if the law seems unwise or works to the disadvantage of a particular group, or if the rationale for it seems tenuous." Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818 (quoting Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620, 632 (1996)).

[36] The burden in on the Plaintiffs to negate "every conceivable basis which might support [the legislation], whether or not the basis has a foundation in the record." Id. at 818, (quoting Heller 50 U.S. at 320-21). The United States has "no obligation to produce evidence to sustain the rationality of a statutory classification." Id. (quoting Heller, 50 U.S. at 320). "A statutory classification fails rational-basis review only when it `rests on grounds wholly irrelevant to the achievement of the State's objective.'" Heller, 50 U.S. at 324 (quoting Holt Civic Club v. City of Tuscaloosa, 439 U.S. 60, 71 (1978)).

[37] The United States asserts that DOMA is rationally related to two legitimate governmental interests. First, the government argues that DOMA fosters the development of relationships that are optimal for procreation, thereby encouraging the "stable generational continuity of the United States." (Memorandum in Support of Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. # 39), pp. 15-16). DOMA allegedly furthers this interest by permitting the states to deny recognition to same-sex marriages performed elsewhere and by adopting the traditional definition of marriage for purposes of federal statutes. Second, DOMA "encourage[s] the creation of stable relationships that facilitate the rearing of children by both of their biological parents." (Memorandum in Support of Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. # 39), pp. 15-16). The government argues that these stable relationships encourage the creation of stable families that are well suited to nurturing and raising children.

[38] Plaintiffs offer little to rebut the government's argument that DOMA is rationally related to the government's proffered legitimate interests. Rather, Plaintiffs repeatedly urge the Court to apply the more rigid strict scrutiny analysis.

[39] Although this Court does not express an opinion on the validity of the government's proffered legitimate interests, it is bound by the Eleventh Circuit's holding that encouraging the raising of children in homes consisting of a married mother and father is a legitimate state interest. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 819-20. DOMA is rationally related to this interest. Moreover, Plaintiffs have failed to satisfy their burden of establishing that DOMA fails rational basis review. See Lofton, 358 F.3d at 818-19; Kandu, 315 B.R. at 148.*fn12 Accordingly, the United States' motion to dismiss is granted.*fn13

[40]

Mark In Irvine said...

It is just a matter of time before the courts recognize that it is not just about sex - it's about the freedom of individuals to choose the person with whom they wish to pursue the "enduring bond" of marriage. The US Supreme Court said this in Lawrence v. Texas:

"To say that the issue in Bowers was simply the right to engage in certain sexual conduct demeans the claim the individual put forward, just as it would demean a married couple were it to be said marriage is simply about the right to have sexual intercourse…. When sexuality finds overt expression in intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element in a personal bond that is more enduring. The liberty protected by the Constitution allows homosexual persons the right to make this choice (p. 567)."

Mark In Irvine said...

... maybe y'all should start packing your bags for Iran - you'll need time to learn Farsi and the proper way to put on those big dark sheet things that chicks have to wear ...

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