Strange Bedfellows

Following a recent court ruling that overturned the hideous Proposition 8, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Jerry Brown are petitioning the courts to allow marriages to resume immediately. This is required since the presiding judge in the case put a hold on his own ruling.

Initially I thought this was a reasonable course of action on the judge’s part. Clearly he was thinking about the possibility of his ruling being overturned and didn’t wanna deal with a whole new set of people who get married and then have marriage made illegal. That’s what happened when Prop 8 was first enforced back a couple years ago and it created all sorts of messy situations.

But then I read this quote from the legal brief:

“The Administration believes the public interest is best served by permitting the Court’s judgment to go into effect, thereby restoring the right of same-sex couples to marry in California,” read the brief from Schwarzenegger. “Doing so is consistent with California’s long history of treating all people and their relationships with equal dignity and respect.”

You know, it’s a good point. We don’t need to wait. Why wait? Sure, there may be problems down the line, but those can be sorted then. What’s the line? “Justice delayed is justice denied?” Let’s stop denying justice in California.


Hooray for Argentina!

They’ve really come a long way down in Argentina since the dark days of Peron and his cronies. Now they’ve become the first country in South America to legalize gay marriage. This now means that in Canada, Argentina, Mexico City and five US states, gays can marry, plus a few locations elsewhere. Here’s a handy graph from Nate Silver.

The weird spike is caused by California legalizing and then unlegalizing it.

Anyhow, this is certainly wonderful progress! It’s not everything and it certainly isn’t enough, but for now it’s pretty damn great!

Oh, and for something less great, yet morbidly amusing, check this on the DADT policy.

Gay Marriage News

A federal judge has issued a sensible ruling. The ruling was on the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), and it said that the act violates the 10th Amendment, which reserves certain powers for the states.

From the New York Times:

“The federal government, by enacting and enforcing DOMA, plainly encroaches upon the firmly entrenched province of the state, and in doing so, offends the Tenth Amendment. For that reason, the statute is invalid,” Tauro wrote in a ruling in a lawsuit filed by Attorney General Martha Coakley.

Damn fine ruling.

Of course it’s going to be challenged. Look for it in the Supreme Court in the next year or so. When it gets there, I’m pretty sure they’ll do the expected ruling, which is to say that states don’t have to legalize gay marriage, but they do have to recognize any legal marriage from another state/territory. It’s the only real sensible, Constitutionally sound ruling they can make. Plus once that’s done, I can start really working on the someone special in my life. Who is probably cringing on reading that. 😀

So, yeah, minor progress, but progress nevertheless.

More on the McDonald’s Ad

Courtesy of the Dish.

Bill O’Reilly made some obnoxious remarks about it the other day. See here:

Dan Savage is a little irked.

Because, you know, gay teenagers with schoolboy crushes on classmates and the kind of Islamic fundamentalism that inspires Islamic regimes to execute gay teenagers and Islamic immigrants to bash gays and lesbians in France—hey, pretty much the same thing.

Eh. I understand his point, but I’m pretty sure O’Reilly was simply making a very stupid, poor-taste joke. It was a dumb thing for him to have said. I doubt he’ll apologize for it; that’s just not his style. But I won’t take it seriously, either.

One other point Savage makes:

I also have to take issue with that statement by the French McDonald’s executive: “There’s obviously no problem with homosexuality in France today.” If that’s the case… why isn’t this insanely cute gay teenager out to his gruff-but-loving dad? If the ad had ended with the teenager saying, “Dad, there’s something I have to tell you…” and then we saw Dad lean across the table as the camera pulled back to put a hand on his son’s shoulder in a clearly supportive manner, well, maybe then you could argue that everything’s wonderful for gays in France.

Yeah, I guess my original comments on the whole thing are a little Pollyanna-eqsue. I keep forgetting that just because I, and everyone I’ve known, had an easy time dealing with my parents when I came out, that doesn’t mean everyone does. Hell, that’s part of the crux of a novel I’m working on.

Shut up, Stewie.

Slightly Less Evil in Malawi

Back a few days ago I wrote about an incredibly evil move by the Malawian government to punish a consenting, adult, gay couple with 14 years of prison and hard labor.

Well, now comes the good news that they’ve been pardoned by the country’s president. But the bad news? If they resume their relationship at any point they can be re-arrested and charged once more.

But Patricia Kaliati, Malawi’s Minister of Gender and Children, said Monjeza and Chimbalanga’s release did not mean they could continue their relationship.

“It doesn’t mean that now they are free people, they can keep doing whatever you keep doing,” she said.

Charming. Yes, just because you are adults doesn’t mean you have the freedom to have a relationship with each other. Also, Ministry of Gender and Children? What the hell?

Here’s what the President of Malawi had to say when pardoning them:

“In all aspects of reasoning, in all aspects of human understanding, these two gay boys were wrong – totally wrong,” he said.

Listen, uhm… sorry, I didn’t bother to pay attention to your name, so I’ll just call you President Jerk. Listen, Jerk, first, they are men, not boys. They have the right to have whatever relationship with each other they want.

Second, don’t tar everyone with your stupid brush. It is not true that in “all aspects of reasoning,” and “human understanding” that they were wrong. They were not. Your stupid, evil little government was wrong for punishing them for an imaginary crime that hurt no one. Yes, it’s great that you pardoned them, but you’re still an little slug in charge of a government of little slugs and your asinine persecution of gays needs to stop and stop now.

I still find it appalling that any nation, much less one with as many problems as Malawi, bothers to waste time dealing with fake crimes like being gay. I guess it’s much easier than dealing with real ones, like massive government corruption.

Evil in Malawi

Malawi is a poor, unpleasant African nation existing on the margins of total failure. They have multiple problems, including ones that are, to paraphrase Borat, social, economic and gay.

Yes, this is a country that’s just a short step away from being a failed state and rather than address and deal with those issues they have instead chosen to prosecute a gay couple who weren’t hurting anyone. Said gays have been convicted of being gay and are going to have a 14 year prison sentence with hard labor. Well, charming. Yes, that’ll teach them not to give in to natural desires!

What a stupid, fucked-up ruling based on a stupid, fucked-up law. There’s been some noises about cutting off aid to the country until they repeal this law and free these men. I haven’t any real problem with that idea, except that it means that we’ll have to do the same for many, many other countries around the world. It means a lot of the poor of Malawi will suffer, and that sucks, but maybe in their suffering they’ll demand a better government than what they have.

Do We Have a Right to Know?

Now why would anyone think she's a lesbian?

President Obama has picked Elena Kagan to be the next Supreme Court justice. Aside from any questions about her political leanings (from what I can tell she’s more liberal than the conservatives would like and more conservative than the liberals would like), there’s a 500 pound gorilla in the room that the media doesn’t want to touch.

Is Kagan a lesbian?

The answer is, “probably”. We don’t know for sure, and no one has asked her. If we ask her, “Are you Jewish?” she’ll say, “Yes.” But I’m sure if someone asked, “Are you a lesbian?” she’d ramble off onto some non-answer about how that’s part of her personal life and not really anyone’s business, which will translate into, “yes, I am,” without her actually saying she is.

I’m partly inclined to agree that it’s not anyone’s business. But I do come back to the Jewish thing. Is it any of my business that she’s Jewish? Does that make a bit of difference? Not really, but it’s something every article on her points out.

But no mainstream article on her brings up the gay question. Surely having the first-ever openly gay justice on the court would be a major issue akin to having the first Jew on the court (which happened some time ago), but since no one is asking the question, she doesn’t have to be open about it.

She should be. She should tell us firmly, “yes, I am,” or “no, I’m not”. But she won’t tell cause no one in the mainstream media will ask. But they should. We have the right to know about that just as much as we do about her religion, and that’s something everyone is talking about.

So ask the damn question.