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October 10, 2008

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Good for Connecticut.

Meanwhile, California's bigots have a constitutional amendment on the ballot that'd make same-sex marriages illegal, and which would annul George Takei's marriage to a man he's been with for how long? Close to twenty years?

I've heard that it has a chance of passing, which has me shake my head at the land where I have left my heart. Then again, it is the State where Ronny Raygun and Tricky Dick cut their teeth as governors.

I can only hope that the People will not disappoint me like they did in 2004. I want my America back.

I'm not sure whether it would actually annul existing marriages; that would probably have to go to the courts. Not that that's much of an improvement.

Support No on 8!

Prop 8 would annul existing marriages. Apparently the authors of Prop 8 were quite upset that the state's ballot had some comments clarifying its text, and they tried to go to court. It just isn't fair when the implications of a constitutional amendment are spelled out. Waugh! And it points out the big law in using ballots to change a constitution.

Meanwhile, I followed the link you provided, but I couldn't see any 'donation' button. Maybe I need more coffee.

The Attorney General of California, Jerry Brown, stated back in the summer that it would not annul existing marriages; has something changed in that regard?

Hmm. Maybe I was misinformed. I'll be quite happy to be wrong.

Needless to say, defeat is important regardless!

Inflicting a crushing defeat upon them would be very nice. Mind you, they're like cockroaches and keep coming back, but at least we'd have a few years of peace. By the time they try again, people who don't care either way might tell them to knock it off because they'll have gotten used to that icky idea of same-sex marriage.

I saw this on the news! It's wonderful! And yes, existing marriages will be annulled if Prop 8 passes. That's one of the reasons people are pushing so hard. They'd push hard anyway, but to see people who have had the grace and courtesy of marriage lose it would be awful.

The livelongnmarry community (fannish support for marriage equality in California) had an auction a few months ago -- I offered a custom-designed beadwoven necklace and told the runner-up that I'd make her one, too, if she met the winning bid, so made two -- has started back up because the Prop 8 people have gotten tons more money. That would be a way to participate/give.

Marilee, Serge:

Can one of you provide an actual cite re. the annulling of existing marriages, please?

I remember looking at livelongmarry last time around and would have offered something or other, but it's not very open to offerings from non-LJ people. Too bad.

I don't see anything about that in the ballot book, althouh I don't want to read the arguments for and against (all the shouting is on the anti side, surpisingly). The text certainly doesn't say that - although I'd bet that if it passed, there'd be a law proposed shortly afterward to void all the same-sex marriages that have taken place.

Here's where I first read about this:

http://whatever.scalzi.com/2008/07/30/no-fair-youre-saying-what-the-amendment-does/

Serge:
Fond as I am of Scalzi's writing, he's not a legal scholar, and him saying something does not magically make it so.

An actual legal scholar, testifying in CA last week:

Goodwin Liu, a professor at the UC Berkeley School of Law, testified on Prop 8's legal implications. If the measure is approved, it is not clear what will happen to the same-sex couples who lawfully wed between June and November.

Liu said courts typically do not favor retroactive application of the law unless it is clearly stated in the law or ballot language.

"Nothing in the text of Prop 8, nothing in the voter information guide and nothing in the background of the measure so far indicates that Prop 8 is intended to apply retroactively," Liu said.

Likewise, California's Attorney General, who would be in charge of interpreting and enforcing said law, says it would not apply retroactively.

Methinks they may know a tad more about these things than Scalzi does. At the very least, if Prop 8 passes, there would be a court case on the issue of retroactivity, along with a court case on the issue of whether the proposition is even valid -- whether it's a constitutional amendment, in which case yes, or a revision, in which case no. My understanding is that the courts have declined to pre-rule on either issue.

I think Prop 8 is odious, but stating definitively that it would apply retroactively looks like scare tactics to me. And though I can understand why people want to use them, I'm not all that much more thrilled to see them from my side than from the other side.

In the meantime, since I would like to enjoy at least a day or two of glowing about CT, I will note for the benefit of people in other states that Connecticut is happy for anyone to come marry here. New Yorkers in particular: take note that NY will recognize out-of-state marriages, and CT is very easy to get to.

Oh, I only mentionned Scalzi because that's where I first heard about it. Nothing more, nothing less. That being said, please do enjoy the glow of happiness about CT. It's nice to be able to feel that after 8 years of a crappy 21st Century without anything remotely like air cars or robot maids. (Come to think of it, I'm glad we don't have robot maids. Y2K was fun enough for us programmers without our having to worry about mobile machines that could assault us with an iron or a vacuum cleaner.)

Just a brief glow, because the fight continues. All the fights. Florida's initiative is actually even more pernicious than Prop 8, with phrasing, "marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof" which would also bar civil unions, domestic partnerships, etc.

Susan... We get our glows where we can.

Cockcroaches do learn from their predecessors's mistakes, eh? Just like, they couldn't have creationism taught in science classes because it's not science so they came up with Intelligent Design, which sounds like science (provided that the only science you know comes from Lost in Space.)

Anyone who thinks humans are intelligently designed is an idiot.

Malicious design, now that I'd buy.

Maybe parts of the design were subcontracted to the lowest bidder.

Serge, I think the design was subcontracted to *several* low bidders. Otherwise the parts might work better when assembly is complete.

Clearly a committee project. A really large committee.

If a camel is a horse designed by a committee, then a human is a committee's version of what, exactly?

You're right, according to the Wikipedia article, constitutional scholars say it will not annul the current marriages. It also shows that while polls have been running against the proposition, the latest is for.

I think a lot of our problems can be connected directly to the fact that our spine was designed to work horizontally.

Oops. Remember what happened the last time we let a tag run over? I apparently messed up the end of the a tag.

Tag fixed!

I was thinking, among other design flaws, of the rather awkward problem of giving birth at just about the worst possible developmental moment. I suspect the intelligent design crew regards painful and complication-prone childbirth as a feature (punishment on all women for Eve's sins) rather than a bug, but I don't.

Obviously when the big-head feature was arrived at, somebody forgot about possible incompatibilities with the delivery system.

Jokes aside, one of my favorite lines from the movie Inherit the Wind goes like this...

Then why did God plague us with the capacity to think? Mr. Brady, why do you deny the one thing that sets above the other animals? What other merit have we? The elephant is larger, the horse stronger and swifter, the butterfly more beautiful, the mosquito more prolific, even the sponge is more durable. Or does a sponge think?

One could say that the Designer purposefully put those flaws in us to force us to use our brains to compensate for the flaws, making us flexible to new and unexpected situations. But the bottom line is that the final results were arrived at by accident and chance. That, to me anyway, makes it even more wonderful. As Spencer Tracy's character in the movie says when he's asked if he believes there is anything holy...

Yes. The individual human mind. In a child's power to master the multiplication table, there is more sanctity than in all your shouted "amens" and "holy holies" and "hosannas." An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man's knowledge is a greater miracle than all the sticks turned to snakes or the parting of the waters.

Connecticut residents support our Supreme Court's decision 53%-42%.

Article here.

The only possible hiccup, and I think it's unlikely, is that once every twenty years we are required to vote on whether or not to have a constitutional convention to discuss possible changes. And by sheer coincidence, it's this year. But the hurdles to any constitutional consideration of same-sex marriage are significant: we'd have to vote to have the convention. Then the delegates would have to vote to even consider an amendment or consider a referendum process. If they voted to consider an amendment, it would still have to pass. If they voted to put in a referendum process, then a referendum would have to be organized (signatures etc.), and then any change would have to pass.

All in all, none of this is likely to happen. Barring some sort of federal override, we're now a safe state for same-sex marriage.

Aside to Serge:
Have you read Clarence Darrow for the Defense? I read it after the first time I read Inherit the Wind in school. Darrow was a childhood hero of mine.

Susan... The Darrow link appears to be broken. By the way, it's interesting, while watching the movie, to remember that William Jennings Bryant, who was against Evolution, was one of the people who transformed the Democratic Party into the Party of social justice.

Link fixed, sorry!

A novel about Darrow by the author of Lust for Life and The Agony and the Ecstasy? Hmmmm.

Not a novel! Biography! Nonfiction!

That sounds just as good. I'll put it on my mental list of something to look for.

This is the day! Marriages are happening on our very own Green here today!

Reading the comments on a NYTimes blog post (from back in October) on the topic, which are overwhelmingly favorable, the most amusing "anti" comment was from a Canadian who complained (tongue in cheek) that legalizing same-sex marriage in Connecticut will reduce tourism revenues in Toronto.

A statistic pulled from the same source: as of mid-October, the for/against ratio on marriage equality in CT was the same as the Obama/McCain ratio.

Yep, some of the first marriages were covered in the news tonight!

Frank M Robinson on his being in the movie "Milk"

Serge:
Thanks for that link! I've never read any of his SF/horror writing, but how interesting to hear from someone who was there. I thought this line was unbearably sad:

I just pretended I was talking to the real Scott and Harvey and everything went just fine.

I can't imagine having any of my dead friends portrayed in a movie.

The movie still isn't playing in CT. Sigh. I may have to catch it on one of my NYC trips this month.

Yeah, it is a sad line. And the movie isn't playing here either. It may be that official Nov 20 release (if I read the date) right, was for a limited initial release, to be followed by a wider national one. If not, well, I'll be in the Bay Area for the Holidays.

(I've never read anything by Robinson, but I think that most of the writing he's done has been in the mainstream. Still, he is one of us. I remember the Anaheim worldcon of 1997 and seeing a friend I wanted to talk to in the con suite but I didn't because she was busy talking with Robinson.)

Read the bio on his webpage -- he's out of the old pulp magazine collector/writer crowd from the mid-20thc. Fandom back when the fan/pro distinction was a whole lot fuzzier.

Oh goodness... This was obviously made before the Election. But, again, oh goodness...

Prop 8 - The Musical

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