Friday, January 29, 2010

Ugly Business In The Indiana Senate

It seems that every year, Indiana's Senate passes a bill that causes me to feel shame about the state I live in- one that recommends a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.

For one thing, the premise is complete bunk. From the mouth of the author, via the Indy Star:
"Marriage is one of the foundations of our society," said Sen. Carlin Yoder, R-Middlebury, who authored the amendment. "It is something that I firmly believe needs to be protected."

I've never understood, despite a ton of hot air, how a same-sex union threatens marriage. I'm married to my wife, and not once have I felt any suspect inclination that it would come crashing to an end upon hearing that gay people were marrying in California or Massachusetts, or some other state. Nothing affects my marriage, because it is between myself and my wife.

You want to protect marriage, Yoder? Ban divorce.

Better yet, get government out of the business of regulating marriage altogether. Let the churches marry people who want to be married. Let the courts uphold the contracts and agreements made by two people, whether married or not. How hard is that?

Apparently, for Republicans, that's too much to take. They apparently are much happier sticking their nose into people's private lives. Don't be fooled by their rhetoric about smaller government. What a load of crap. Don't let me hear another Republican derisively shout 'socialism'! Physician? Heal thyself!

So, I was especially proud of the Libertarian Party of Indiana, when the party stood up to declare opposition to this bill.

The notion of changing our Constitution to include Senate Joint Resolution 13 is in complete disharmony with the Preamble of this State’s guiding document.

Our Constitution reads, “WE DECLARE, That all people are created equal; that they are endowed by their CREATOR with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that all power is inherent in the People; and that all free governments are, and of right ought to be, founded on their authority, and instituted for their peace, safety, and well-being.”

Let me translate for the proponents of SJR-13. Our government was instituted to protect the right of every Hoosier to make decisions as they see fit. Our Constitution was written to protect us from invasive government.

Shame on those members of both the Senate and House that seek to violate the purpose of our Constitution. For all the sign waving by my Republican friends about liberty and socialism, it is striking that they would propose to write into this document discrimination and direct government interference.

Beyond this, the Republicans who promote this nonsense actually make Pat Bauer look like he's got his finger on the pulse of the state. From the Star:
House Speaker B. Patrick Bauer, D-South Bend, said the amendment is unlikely to receive a hearing this year, arguing the state's trial and appeals courts have upheld Indiana's marriage law.

"It's the same old song," Bauer said. "Some people don't have enough to do creating jobs and moving this economy forward, so they think up divisive things."

So, I'm proud of the LPIN, and ashamed of the Republicans. Why could I never get on board with the Republicans? Because they do so many irrelevant and needlessly antagonistic, counterproductive, and oppressive things.


varangianguard said...

I think that one or more of the current major parties will one day follow the Whig Party into the dustbin of history. The best criticism I have heard back is that both are too entrenched to fail.

Still, too much more talk of purging moderates and continued pursuits after chimeric non-issues, and even the most entrenched group can fade into a deserved obscurity.

And, was that Chris in a suit and a tie?!? Good thing his collar was slightly askew, else I would have likely fallen out of my chair in a dead faint! lmao.

For some reason, the security software at work has declared this blog to be a security threat. So, don't be surprised if I'm not lurking around here as much I might normally have.

Al said...

Mike, the premise of your argument is incorrect.
Republicans are not forcing an issue on society by reaffirming that marriage is between one man and one woman. They are protecting this concept of marriage from activist courts.
If I understand your political philosophy, you would rather issues get debated and argued by the people via representatives than in front of a justice who will then decide.
Let the proponents of one man one woman marriage and the proponents of same sex marriage lobby and debate, air ads, buy billboards, or any other venue to influence the people.
This is how Ohio did it in 2004 when a ballot initiative voted by the people passed reaffirming that marriage is one man one woman.
Sadly, some marriages fail because like all human constructs (politics, business, sports, etc.) individuals in them fail.
I would not fault free market capitalism based on the failings of one person who swindles and games the system. Same with marriage; do not fault it for the failings of some individuals.
Lastly, why should all those who believe that marriage is meant only for one man and one woman be forced to change its meaning because of the complaints of a few who don’t.
A dictionary would lose its value if definitions were changed at the whim of those who don’t like the definitions.

Mike Kole said...

Protecting the concept of marriage from an activist court? No, I'm saying that marriage is primarily a religious function, and not the business of government at all.

Let's not forget that the history of regulating marriage was to keep blacks from marrying whites.

Moreover, as a straight man, I deeply resent government imposing a license, a permit!, on me when I wed my wife. What the fuck business was it of my state? It was between me, my wife, and my minister.

As for majority votes, I have little use for them when it comes to protecting rights, as Republicans should know. Tax the rich? Let people debate, put up billboards, etc. Socialized health care? Etc. Can't have it both ways, my friend. Republicans sure try to, in curious ways.

Mike Kole said...

Also, check your premises on this one, where you say, "why should all those who believe that marriage is meant only for one man and one woman be forced to change its meaning because of the complaints of a few who don’t".

Are you married? As stated before, I am. In what way is one couple's marriage changed because gay people marry? My marriage is between one man and one woman. I suspect yours is, too. What changes tomorrow if gay people marry?

Al said...

Re: As for majority votes, I have little use for them when it comes to protecting rights, as Republicans should know. Tax the rich? Let people debate, put up billboards, etc. Socialized health care? Etc. Can't have it both ways, my friend. Republicans sure try to, in curious ways.

I’m a bit confused as to the point you are trying to make with that comment.
My point is that the issue of redefining marriage did not exist until courts attempted to by judicial fiat. In 1996 the people by way of their representatives passed the Defense of Marriage Act in response to cases pending in the court system.
Other than that, marriage is not a right but a rite.
You didn’t answer my closing question if a small minority can redefine the meaning of something like marriage. I don’t think they can otherwise we are through the looking glass where a word means only what the speaker claims it to mean.
It has nothing to do with if same sex marriage will or will not harm marriage.
As to requiring a license to marry, I cannot speak for Indiana, but Ohio recognizes “common law marriage”. That is marriage without the paperwork.
But such co-habitations do not try to redefine the other licensed form of marriage. In fact, couples who I have known who live together are proud of not being married and will correct those who mistaken them as married.
As for the old argument about multi-ethnic marriages being banned, especially those between blacks and whites, it is true that the Democrat controlled south imposed many forms of racial tyranny on its citizens. Besides the basic human rights being violated, it also violated the definition of marriage by imposing a racial element. It is not inconsistent with defending and reaffirming one man one woman marriage.
And, to answer your question, yes, I am married.

Mike Kole said...

Ok, let's boil it down:

1) What is the specific threat to marriage? If gay people marry, then what exactly will happen to marriage?

2) How will your marriage be directly affected if the gay couple down the street marries?

This case has never been made in a way I can see, so make the case.

Al said...

It’s apparent that we are debating completely different points:
Your point is about the harm or lack of harm with having homosexual marriage included in marriage.
My point is why a small minority should dictate to the rest what marriage means.

So, to your point:
Whether same sex marriage harms or doesn’t harm marriage as defined is irrelevant to the issue.
Using perceived harm or lack of harm is not reason enough.
Otherwise the government can tap my phone, read my emails, and search my house because what harm will it do to me since I am not a criminal or terrorist.

To my point:
The 2000 U.S. Census Bureau found that homosexual couples constitute less than 1% of American households.
Why should a 1% minority have the power to redefine anything for the vast majority?

Source: What Percentage of the Population Is Gay?

Mike Kole said...

It matters tremendously to me about harm caused. I use the Jeffersonian test of "Does it pick my pocket or break my leg" for evaluating good law. Also, the pursuit of happiness. Recognizing gay marriage does not pick my pocket nor break my leg, nor does it interfere with my pursuit of happiness. Banning it does harm gay people's pursuit of happiness. Ergo, bad government.

Moreover, good government protects the rights of minorities. I could care less whether that minority is 49.99% or 0.00001%. It's matter of principle.

This is most illuminating, coming from you as a Republican, where apparently principle does not matter, and the numbers are the whole story. That's how the Republican Party seems to be in general, and why I am not one, and cannot be one, and why I fight against it.

Now, explain to me how the legalization of gay marriage defines marriage, and again, how that harms society. You haven't done the job.