California Throws H8 Back to Voters

In 1780 in the Massachusetts constitution, John Adams said we are “a government of laws, not men.” This is what the California Supreme court effectively restated today when it went against its own earlier ruling in favor of gay marriage. It said to the people of the state of California, “if you’re going to deny the rights of a group of your fellow citizens, we’re not going to stop you.” It tossed the full burden of the decision back into the laps of the voters. Now the tiny majority which passed Prop. 8 has to live with their choice. They have to deal with the reality that they’ve created a separate category in the law which does not include the 18,000 gay couples married during the brief “California Spring” when it was legal. This fact alone should be enough to eventually overturn this injustice. This legal irony has made lifelong activists out of people who’d rather just be living in wedded peace.

From AP:

“In a sense, petitioners’ and the attorney general’s complaint is that it is just too easy to amend the California Constitution through the initiative process. But it is not a proper function of this court to curtail that process; we are constitutionally bound to uphold it,” the ruling said.

The justices said the 136-page majority ruling does not speak to whether they agree with Proposition 8 or “believe it should be a part of the California Constitution.”

They said they were “limited to interpreting and applying the principles and rules embodied in the California Constitution, setting aside our own personal beliefs and values.”

In other words, the justices, as they already ruled, think the outcome is a travesty. But they are going to do their jobs, act professionally and leave it to the people to ultimately fix this. And make no mistake, the people will do the right thing. As I’ve mentioned previously, a statistical analysis of trends of declining religiosity predicts California will allow gay marriage by 2010. And it looks like this decision puts that analysis right on target. No question there will be a new initiative, and the people of the Golden State will have the opportunity to undo the damage done to our reputation as a national trendsetter in social and environmental matters.

The religious right should savor this moment, because it is one of their last hollow triumphs to keep marriage on their own narrow-minded terms. They will not turn back the tide. The Supreme Court basically held their noses and did their duty today. Now it’s time for the people of California to do theirs.

Comments (2 comments)

Chuck / May 27th, 2009, 10:01 am / #1

I heard about this on the radio, and I was a concerned. At first, I thought the courts were wrong in allowing the proposition to stand. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that this is definitely a decision the people have to make. I just hope you're right about their ability to make the right decision. I don't know how Proposition 8 got through in the first place. I would expect that here on the east coast, but not out there. Still a little disappointed, but hopeful.

Chris / May 30th, 2009, 5:11 am / #2

thass some wacky ass bowl sheeit.
2010 here we come!! ready or fuckin not.

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