Monday, July 10, 2006

David at BMG Couldn't Be More Wrong on the Anti-SSM Amendment

David either thinks it's his job to regulate the facts or only pretends to pay attention to Bay State politics and news, because his latest update to BMG couldn't be more offensive - or so strongly worded. I just wonder if he really is progressive or one of the increasingly less common stone-age democratic DINOs that don't really care about progressive issues, but are as blue in the face as Angry Joe Lieberman after he lost the Connecticut debate (to a real progressive).

Well, actually, I don't wonder. Because time after time, he's proven himself to be a progressive in sheep's clothing. He just loved Bush's immigration position, all 4-5 sentences of it, and thinks Massachusetts should bankrupt itself because voters, years and years ago, wanted to reduce state income tax (apparently, hindsight isn't 20-20). He's no progressive at all, merely a product of Massachusetts's outmoded machine democratic party. Left of center, maybe, but couldn't give a crap about the real people that are effected by matters of government policy.

I'm sorry if I'm being a little on the strong side, but he essentially skips all the inconvienant facts of this Phoenix editorial and proceeds to call them disgraceful.

Disgraceful? Really? Not just wrong, but disgraceful? Wow, those whackos at the Phoenix must have done something really bad to be called disgraceful... so what was it? Endorsed Mitt Romney for President in 2008? Suggested we establish permanent bases over in Iraq? Tell everyone to go watch a Tom Cruise movie? Eat children?

Oh, yea, they stuck up for the GLBT community. That earns them the label "disgraceful" from someone who pretends to represent an entire progressive community. Don't make me laugh.

Apparently, David was mad that the Phoenix thinks we should use parliamentary procedures to avoid voting on the Same-Sex Marriage ban. He says it's unconstitutional, but avoids mentioning the fact that the Same-Sex Marriage ban is unconstitional anyway: it was an amendment strictly created to overturn a court case, which in this state isn't allowed (but Tom Reilly, the so-called supporter of marriage equality, decided to skip matters of principle then... and here as well).

(Update: The SJC ruled on what I mentioned above and found it to be legal. I disagree with the opinion, but I'm not going to be too harsh on them, other than say that I think it was a little sheepish as the language in the state constitution seems quite clear to me.)

Would I be remiss to point out that a lawyer who served as clerk to not one, but two (TWO!!) SCOTUS Justices should have figured that out? Oh, wait, that's right... they weren't exactly the liberal ones on the court, were they? Fitting for BMG's Dino Flintstone of left-wing politics.

David not only calls the Phoenix d i s g r a c e f u l, but he propogates right-wing talking points Mitt Romney and Karl Rove just love to spout (like 'we just need to put it up to a vote!' 'let the people decide' 'up or down' blah blah blah... Isn't that what Lieberman said when he let Scalito get on the bench of the SCOTUS?) Parliamentary procedures be damned, let's put everything to a vote. Illegal wiretapping? Public opinion polls say yes! Free speech? Public opinion polls say no! No matter that democratic values brought forth parliamentary procedures to begin with (those pesky checks and balances), let's leave our civil rights to the whims of the masses.

Want the bottom line? Readers, we have a new Democracy in America - the rabid kind. And meet David de Toqueville over at BMG, I hear he has a bridge to sell ya.

David, you're wrong. So was the Boston Globe when it wrote the same invalid points you and Mitt Romney tried to make, but at least they didn't call people disgraceful for trying to defend Civil Rights. In all honesty, that's the only disgraceful thing that happened on your blog - vociferously attacking defenders of Civil Rights is never a good thing. I wouldn't be writing this if you merely said the Phoenix was wrong - but no, you had to go all hyperbole on your readers.

But this isn't about you, David. It's about me! Civil Rights should never be placed on any ballot, where demogogues charge the masses and strip the rights of people left and right. When you put Civil Rights on the ballot, they lose. State after state has banned marriage equality and let me just say I'm glad to call the Bay State home.

My advice to David at BMG? Stick to doing the Weekly Traffic Reports, leave the rest of the blogging to the real professionals progressives. Oh, and I hope the singing career is going well, because your vision of the law seems to be about as hazy as your hindsight. (Update: I'm striking that last sentence, even though I thought it was pretty funny - and I hope David didn't take it too seriously - because of the way the SJC ruled.)

Update: I added additional content in this blog because of today's SJC ruling; wherever that content was added, I put it in parenthesis with an "Update" in italics.

I'm not going to pretend to be disappointed in today's SJC ruling, especially since they ruled in favor of it 6-0.

The Court's decision:
The plaintiff's claim is that the proposed amendment, which seeks to overrule the rule of constitutional law announced in Goodridge v. Department of Pub. Health, 440 Mass. 309 (2003) (due process and equal protection clauses of Massachusetts Constitution bar limiting marriage to heterosexual couples) constitutes the "reversal of a judicial decision" and therefore is excluded from the initiative process by art.

Well, saying there can be no "reversal of a judicial decision," seems pretty clear to me. But then the court goes on to essentially explain that what the Constitution really means is that the Legislature can't reverse a specific court case... but I guess reversing that case's decision is just fine and dandy. Whatever.

Like I blogged about in the blog just above this one - urging candidates who want to be elected to lobby to kill this amendment the old fashioned way, voting it down - is a way for them to really show they support marriage equality (and something I expect if they want my vote).

If Tom Reilly, Chris Gabrieli, the Lt. Gov candidates and any of the others say they really support marriage equality, then they should spend 5-10 hours over Tuesday and Wednesday seriously lobbying legislators who are known to favor this blatantly bigoted amendment. It's time for all the candidates to put their most important asset where their mouth is: time they'd normally use to campaign. Deval Patrick went to the Gay Pride parade, which I applaud, and I expect him to be calling on the State House to convince our elected representatives to truly support everyone and not be controlled by either our Catholic Prince, Cardinal O'Malley, or our Chief Executive Campaigner, Mitt Romney.

Everyone should call their state Reps and Senators and tell them to vote against this new Constitutional Amendment. Why? It isn't anyone's business if either two guys or two girls want to get married, so long as they're both consenting adults. But certain people find it morally reprehenisble that gay people even exist - and will keep them down at all costs. State after state has even banned partner benifits. Gay couples can't even be allowed to get health insurance together! It's rediculous and must be put at a stop here and now. If the amendment gets less than 50 votes on Wednesday, it will be.


Mass Marrier said...

LOL, particularly about the traffic reports. You are hard, hard...correct but hard.

Romney and Reilly are definitely on the wrong side on this amendment. The SJC should have expedited its decision and found what is obvious, that this is unconstitutional. The Globe should show some guts and political savvy, saying defeat it anyway you can.

MaverickDem said...

Appreciating the raw emotions involved, it appears that David and Tom Reilly have a unanimous SJC - the very same one that gave us Goodridge (which is great - on their side.

Sorry, but David was correct.

Ryan Adams said...

I'm going to go with Michael, Maverick.

BTW, I'm waiting to see just how either you or Tom Reilly is all that maverick =) But I won't hold my breath - and I guess I should be happy that he at least isn't as bad as Finneran.

MaverickDem said...

. . .and I'm going to go with all seven justices of the SJC, Ryan.

Just a hunch, but I'm guessing they know just a little bit more than you do about constitutional issues.

Heck, they got Goodridge right, didn't they? ;)

Bob Neer said...

Ryan, I feel left out. I agreed with David's post, but you didn't include me in your list of faux-Progressives. (Incidentally, BMG doesn't claim to be progressive in our masthead, just reality based, and on that score, as MaverickDem pointed out, David was right on target). Pettiness aside, I'm still interested in who you think should define our civil rights, if not the voters.

Ryan Adams said...

So, you think we should have let the south vote on voting equality?

We don't have a democracy, we have a representative democracy with various levels of protection in case of demagogues. One of the principles of our democracy is a fundamental protection of civil rights that a supermajority would have to vote on to ban.

However, it shouldn't even be attempted because... get this... it's a civil right.

You want to vote on my future marriage? Maybe I should vote on yours. I think that's a great idea - let's give everyone a ballot at the ceremony and let them decide if the groom and bride (or bride and bride, groom and groom) should get married. I bet a lot of them will get voted down - and so much for what the happy couple want. It's about the whims of the masses - or in laws, in this case.

Anonymous said...

Ryan - great post. Same thoughts I had when I read David's post.

You neglect to mention the SJC further in their ruling said EVEN IF voters eventually vote this in - they may overturn it anyway!

So there! :)

First time I've read your blog. I'll be back

Likes Bikes 2 said...


I know this is couple of days late, and after the ConCon, but...

I always amazes me that people who don't have to worry about someone else deciding what they can or cannot do in their personal lives feel fine with the idea of being 'the decider' for others.

When there is something about you that puts you in the minority, then it is not so easy to say, 'let the people decide!'

Being in that place, as an adult, having grown up in this country where the rights of the individual are supposed to be respected as in no other place in the world might give more perspective on this issue.

But it is hard to swallow that crap from those who don't live in fear of being on that famous list of who they are coming for.

As to the SJC opinion, they worked with what was in front of them, and at least 2 of the Justices were not happy with that. Who knows, if the case had been briefed more fully the decision would have gone another way - and those other issues are the ones that should have sent this in another direction. I retain my anger about that.

As do I retain my distain for those who will aways sit in the stands and never in the pit with the lions.

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