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Thursday, July 1, 2004

This year's Naders

Worldwide Pablo today bemoans the fact that the anti-gay-marriage initiative that's going on the November ballot here in Oregon is sure to win. Not only that, but he notes that it will bring right-wingers out in droves, which could cost Kerry the state.

Wouldn't it be something if the electoral vote was close as a razor again, and Bush was re-elected because he narrowly won Oregon?

Thanks again, Multnomah County commissioners.

Comments (24)

"Thanks again, Multnomah County commissioners."

I could not agree with you more. Or with Pablo. Couldn't believe when I saw that freight train bearing down then. Let's hope self-righteousness doesn't need to turn into a real big blankie to keep everyone comforted.

Really, what a scary scenario you've contrived there. Yeah, lets make sure that every Orville Faubus approves before we do anything rash.

If an anti-gay-marriage initiative can't bring out the *liberals* in droves, they deserve to lose the state. Don't thank the commissioners, thank the hundreds of thousands of people too apathetic to get their asses to the polls, even when they know the vote is: a) important, and b) close.

"Thanks again, Multnomah County commissioners."

While I have always agreed with your take on how the County Commissioners handled the gay marriage issue (and other things), don't you think it's a little attenuated to blame them for a potential razor thin win by G.W.B in the electoral college? There is another issue that most Americans/Oregonians are concerned with besides gay marriage, isn't there? And the GOP had made gay marriage an issue long before Multnomah County's decision. Maybe you should blame that damn Massachusetts Supreme Court ... or better the plaintiffs who brought the suit in the first place.

Hi, Ken! Hey, I didn't say it was going to happen. I said it could. And did the Sisters of Hawthorne think about this before they took action? Nah.

I wish they had been as bold, brave and visionary when it came to fixing the Sellwood Bridge, which, when last I checked, is what they were elected to do. And aren't doing.

Okay, we can complain all we want about the past actions of the commissioners - but, we can't change that now, and its certainly not going to get us out of this mess.

Yeah, I am upset this boost for GWB. But, I am also extremely concerned about the Oregon Constitution being amended to deny civil rights.

The time for complaining has ended ... unless of course, you support the amendment.

Nice try, but the time for complaining is still quite open.

I strongly oppose this amendment, but it's going to pass. And it wouldn't be in this very important national election mix if the Multnomah County commissioners hadn't forced it onto the ballot.

We could have waited a year or two to slug it out over gay marriage. But what Bush will do to this country if re-elected will damage us for at least two generations.

I have an idea. What if we actually separate church and state WRT marriage?

A civil union ceremony should be the only contract that the state provides. Those who want a Marriage in the classic (sic) sense, can go to the church of their choice and perform the religious rite of their choice.

If we would just honor the constitution, Article I and the framers intent, our laws would evolve to reflect our more inclusive vision of "secure[ing] the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity".

For once I feel sorry for the Commissioners. Damned if they do, damned if they don't.

Stash - In reality, as Blackstone noted in his Commentaries on the Laws of England in 1765 … “Our law considers marriage in no other light than as a civil contract.” Civil marriage is entirely different from “religious marriage.”

In the eyes of the faith I was raised in (Catholic), because I was not married by an ordained Catholic minister, I am not “married” - although I possess the required state certificate.

I do agree that if we just call what the state gives you a “civil contract” there would probably be a lot less fuss about this whole issue. The problem is we are faced with an amendment in Oregon that will foreclose that discussion.

If same-sex couples were allowed the right to civil marriage, or if the mere possibility existed that same-sex couples could “marry”, it might just push the issue of changing the word marriage, which would clarify the boundaries of church and state. However, I fear if this amendment were to pass the discussion would be ended … and other peoples sense of morality - their belief of “what God intended” would be forced upon everyone.

It is an idiotic and dangerous year for a complicated and contentious debate. If Oregon goes Bush, I'll blame wholly the initial and still self-righteous crusaders.

Jack says: "We could have waited a year or two to slug it out over gay marriage."

Who is "we?" Surely not those of us who have been waiting 50 years to get married!

The Commissioners did not extend any new rights to my husband and I. These were rights that had been ours all along, yet had been unconstitutionally witheld from us for decades. We were tired of waiting. The right time to uphold the constitution is always now, regardless of other considerations.

The “Right” has brought people out in droves to support anti-gay ballot measures in the past, and Democrats have still won the state. (One example: Measure 9 in 1992, another Bush election year).
If Democrats have trouble getting people to vote for them now, maybe it is because they do not present a vision that reaches people. I, for one, will vote against Bush this year, as I did last time.
However, I am sick of people using fear of Bush/Republicans as a reason to vote Democrat. The Democrats need to provide reasons to vote for them. I want to vote for a candidate who has strongly held beliefs and isn’t afraid to speak and act on them. I don’t need those beliefs to be perfectly aligned with mine, but they need to be real. I would like to vote for a party that believes in the civil rights of all people, and does not believe that access to such rights should wait for a politically appropriate time.
If the Democrats lose this election, it will be because they did not speak to the majority of the voters. One great way to lose would be to split the left by grousing and in-fighting over the timing of the same-sex marriage issue.

I agree wholly with you, Rachel, that these highly charged issues have brought voters out in droves before. It will be interesting to see how it plays out this time. I idly speculate this issue is more contentious than teachers in schools, but I haven't any information really to back that.

I do not agree that "splitting the left" (of which I do not consider myself a member -- rather a member of some imaginary or very real fiscally conservative, socially libertarian center) will have any effect beyond bickering (ie, on the election results).

I do agree that the Democratic presentation this year is primarily Anybody But Bush. Thus far they are counting on him to win the election for them. Your candidate sounds like it rhymes with "Nader."

My idiosyncratic "social justice" issue is to request tax parity for single people. I'd happily trade support for gay marriages for support for that. Any takers?

The right time to uphold the constitution is always now, regardless of other considerations.

And now you're about to lose your constitutional rights, permanently (or at least for decades). Suit yourself.

Jack: Are you thinking that I may be concerned that I might lose constitutional rights that have always been mine, but that I've never had access to? Hint: I'm not.

Actually, a nice, orderly statewide debate on the subject, lasting a year or two, along with some well-timed and well-placed litigation, might have wound up with gay marriage being legal in Oregon.

The Multnomah County Plan guaranteed that it will never happen. I hope you enjoyed your two weeks.

Jack. To me, if W. wins again there will be plenty of blame for everyone. In the meantime, the Oregon Constitution shouldn't be so easy to change.

Jack, I don't mean to quarrel with you.

I just get the impression that you are looking at this from a privileged majority view and missing out on understanding the experience of the people whose constitutional rights are being withheld.

Your proposing having a "nice, orderly statewide debate on the subject" seems to indicate that you don't know what “the subject” is. It's NOT the merits of same-sex marriage, although for now that's the issue that appears as its face. The actual subject is that many people — and particularly older, conservative, rural Christians — believe that gay people are revolting, vile, disgusting, contaminated people, and it would be best if we could find a way to rid the world of them once and for all. Have you ever been the target of this depth of contempt? It’s the hatred that gay rights activists often (and too quickly, in my opinion) refer to. THAT is the subject. Orderly public debate is not likely possible on this subject, and if it were, might bring about more polarity than consensus.

Time, measured in generations, is what will bring about change. Mainly we need for some of the old guard to die out and be replaced by new citizens who have experienced greater diversity in their lives.

Regarding “I hope you enjoyed your 2 weeks,” I realize you were being flip. But you will never know how much it meant to get a taste of the rights that many (including you?) take for granted. Before we got married we knew that our marriage might be revoked or otherwise diminished. We decided that even one day of equality now was better than a promise we’d heard for decades. I’m too old to wait any longer. Been there; done that.

Ken, I agree with you. The Oregon initiative process is like a time bomb that won't ever stop ticking. Especially in this day and age of massive information overflow, and paid canvassing, it needs a rework.

And Jim, I hear you. I can't speak from your perspective, and I respect that. We can disagree about tactics, but in that debate, your viewpoint has more weight than mine, for obvious reasons.

Jack, how kind of you to say this; I take it as a gift. It makes it easier for me to listen to you, which I need and want to do.

Yes, respectfully disagreeing on tactics is an important part of this process. Maybe as I listen to you, and you listen to me (with each of us representing the personal reality of many others) we can come to understand that your preferred tactics work best to achieve your goal, and mine work best to achieve mine. Eventually we might come to work for each others' goals, which likely are compatible, just different.

Thank you.

This thing was coming, county commissioners or no. With Massachusetts marriages and Canadian marriages, it was going to all hit this year anyway. If my partner and I hadn't been allowed to marry in Portland, we would have gladly gone to Vancouver or Boston and contributed to their economies.

Even now I'm starting to see 'wish gays hadn't pressed for this one, no, why did they have to do that to us?' Well, there's no good time for civil rights, and you can't blame the gays for your lack of planning -- how long have liberals known that same-sex couples were getting the shaft when it came to equal rights?

Uh huh, thought so.

I just talked with a friend who's very active in the Kerry campaign. He figures the gay marriage ballot measure adds three percentage points to Bush's turnout in Oregon. Which, again, is why Diane and the Sisters of Hawtorne should have waited until next year.

You gay folks can suffer discrimination and have Kerry for President, or suffer discrimination and have four more years of Bush. Those are your options. Neither is good, but there are degrees of bad.

As the proponents of gay marriage will unfortunately find out, it is not a "right." It is a privilege which can be bestowed or not bestowed by our government. That's the way it is. And, once again unfortunately, it will probably be "unbestowed" by Oregon's voters this November.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference This year's Naders:

» Why George Bush should replace Richard Cheney with Diane Linn from Isaac Laquedem
Worldwide Pablo and Jack Bog made the same interesting point yesterday, which I'll summarize and distort slightly as this syllogism: 1. The 2004 presidential election is likely to be a close race, maybe as close as the 2000 race. 2. [Read More]

» Will Multnomah County Commission Give Oregon To Bush? from The One True b!X's PORTLAND COMMUNIQUE
That's the buzz late this week amongst several local weblogs, beginning yesterday afternoon with Jack Bogdanski, who cites an earlier Worldwide Pablo item on the anti-marriage consistution amendment sure to come before voters this November. From that l... [Read More]

» They don't get it from My Whim Is Law
I'm an infrequent participant in a politics message board on ECHO, where the mostly ABB-crowd strategizes, shares news, and analyzes details right into oblivion. When I came in to share the news that Oregon will have an amendment to the... [Read More]


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