Showing posts tagged gay marriage



Remember a few months ago when Marine Captain Matthew Phelps proposed to his boyfriend, Ben Schock, inside the White House and he said yes?

Well, they tied the knot this past weekend!

gives me hope.

I dream of a world that lets gay white cis-male military officers enter into heteronormative bourgeois institutions just like straight white cis-male military officers. I dream big. Love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal.

The latest perpetrator of this dishonest argument is a brand new study by Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas. The study is important because it’s the first of its kind to use a large representative random population sample, thanks largely to generous funding from the socially conservative Witherspoon Institute and Bradley Foundation (prominent same-sex marriage opponent and author of the Manhattan Declaration Robert George is a board member of each). Of course, the study doesn’t compare children raised by same-sex couples to children raised by opposite-sex couples. For one thing, adult children of same-sex couples are a tiny minority of the population. And for another, they probably don’t have much faith that that would give them the results they want.

What the study does is divide its respondents (the R in each description) into eight categories:

1. IBF: Lived in intact biological family (with mother and father) from 0 to 18, and parents are still married at present (N = 919).

2. LM: R reported R’s mother had a same-sex romantic (lesbian) relationship with a woman, regardless of any other household transitions (N = 163).

3. GF: R reported R’s father had a same-sex romantic (gay) relationship with a man, regardless of any other household transitions (N = 73).

4. Adopted: R was adopted by one or two strangers at birth or before age 2 (N = 101).

5. Divorced later or had joint custody: R reported living with biological mother and father from birth to age 18, but parents are not married at present (N = 116).

6. Stepfamily: Biological parents were either never married or else divorced, and R’s primary custodial parent was married to someone else before R turned 18 (N = 394).

7. Single parent: Biological parents were either never married or else divorced, and R’s primary custodial parent did not marry (or remarry) before R turned 18 (N = 816).

8. All others: Includes all other family structure/event combinations, such as respondents with a deceased parent (N = 406).

This seems like it’s tossing a whole lot of kids raised in a family where the opposite-sex parents split up into the categories of “gay father” and “lesbian mother” (those with both are in the “gay father” category because it was the smallest). Which is basically a surefire way to increase any disparities between an intact biological family and either of the two gay groups. and to make those groups even less representative of same-sex couples. But you just know that that’s what people are going to claim that this research proves.

Jim Burroway at Box Turtle Bulletin has a much more in depth version of this analysis here.

Colorado civil unions bill is likely dead once more


  • last week House Republicans led a filibuster that many thought had successfully killed a bill aiming to overturn Colorado’s 2006 ban on same-sex marriage. However, Governor John Hickenlooper called an emergency legislative session — set to last at least three days — giving the bill a second chance.
  • today Republican Speaker of the House Frank McNulty essentially killed the bill once more, by sending it to the hardline-GOP State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee. The move shocked many, considering the bill’s bipartisan support, and recent warnings about the GOP’s handling of same-sex rights. source

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Remember how all the people opposed to gay rights used to talk about how it’s totally illegitimate to have the courts decide, and it’s all about protecting democracy, not because they hate gay people? Did anyone actually believe them? Did anyone really think that they wouldn’t use anti-democratic procedural tactics to keep the majority from voting in favor of laws favorable to gay people? Yeah, me neither.




Vote against.

(Not me voting; it’s a friend of mine)

This is what your ballot should look like, folks. Come on NC, let’s do this!

I haven’t really been thinking about this one, and I can’t remember when the vote is. But this question will be on the ballot during the North Carolina primary very shortly. So, anyone in NC who wasn’t really planning on showing up for a meaningless primary vote, please go for this. Even if all it does is keep same-sex marriage just as illegal as it is now, rather than extra-special illegal. I just hate the homophobes winning anything.

Had Marilyn Monroe’s film been called How to Register a Domestic Partnership with a Millionaire, it would not have conveyed the same meaning as did her famous movie, even though the underlying drama for same-sex couples is no different.
US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Perry v. Brown decision (it’s on p. 38 if you’re curious)

Andrew Sullivan Says That “Capitalism Enables Equality.” I Disagree.

In two similar posts about gay rights today, Andrew Sullivan tries to explain how great the free market is at encouraging equality. The first, about the news that all 100 companies on Forbes’ list of Top 100 Companies to Work For now include sexual orientation in their non-discrimination policies explains that this “is because they are serving their shareholders by employing the absolutely best people for the jobs they have and do not want to miss someone’s talents because of something irrelevant like sexual orientation. Hence capitalism enables equality. And the last entity to get with the program is the government.”

The second, about Nike and Microsoft rallying behind Washington State’s push for marriage equality claims that “capitalism is a forceful engine behind inclusive social change”

I think these claims are, frankly, bullshit, for several reasons. For one thing, various state governments got with the program far earlier than the private sector. Here in Massachusetts, we’ve had same-sex marriage for eight years or so. And it was a lawsuit by GLAD, an LGBT rights organization, decided by the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts that got it. And a whole bunch of lobbying and protesting and political maneuvering to get the legislature to keep it from even getting to a ballot question. And sexual orientation has been added to several (if still too few) states non-discrimination laws over the years. So 100 big companies that pride themselves on being worker-friendly have policies which are legally mandated in over 20 states. Don’t twist your arm patting yourselves on the back, glibertarians.

As one of my favorite leftist bloggers out there, Corey Robin, likes to point out, “the levers of political power that ordinary citizens can use here are so diffuse.” Like all struggles for equality, the fight for LGBT marriage rights and non-discrimination laws is difficult due to the design of our political system. There are all sorts of ways to preserve the status quo at the federal, state, and local levels, all sorts of ways for a concerted minority to sway the indifferent to keep things the same, or even to further entrench current laws. If we win in the courts, they scream about about separation of powers. If we win in the legislature, they demand a ballot petition. They scream about the will of the people being trampled, while using the filibuster to prevent majority rule. They write laws into the state constitutions to make today’s prejudices tomorrow’s laws.

But really, what most annoys me about this position of Andrew’s is that he’s completely blind to the white male privilege that this conception of things requires. When he says that “capitalism is a forceful engine behind inclusive social change” he doesn’t realize that to the extent that that’s true, it’s not true for everyone. Gay white males with money who want to get married aren’t exactly a threat to the social order. Not to minimize their (our) struggle, but it’s the sort of struggle most amenable to capitalist pressure. What’s capitalism going to do to eliminate schoolyard bullying? What’s it going to do for gay youth getting kicked out of the home when their parents find out they’re gay? How’s it going to address transwomen who get forced to bunk with the men in homeless shelters? Capitalism can push for the bourgeoisie to share more fully in bourgeois values, but beyond that I’m pretty fucking skeptical.

I remember back when same-sex marriage first started to be a real issue. I’m a bit young to have followed the arguments between the “gay left” and people like Andrew Sullivan over whether gay people should even want to get married. But it hadn’t been too far in the past, and there was still some fading disagreement over the issue. I’m still not about to oppose the right of same-sex couples to marry, but I’m definitely seeing what they were worried about. I’ve usually rolled my eyes when Andrew’s written about how same-sex marriage is truly a conservative ideal, but maybe he’s got a point after. Problem is, conservative ideals tend to suck.


House GOP triples budget to fight same-sex marriage



  • $1.5 million in funding to prevent gays from marrying source

» Don’t forget, this is taxpayer money, allocated by House Republicans to their legal counsel to defend DOMA in court. It was originally capped at $500,000, but that limit has since been tripled.

Priorities people. 

I think if I spent a thousand years trying to figure it out, the Republican Party’s spending priorities still wouldn’t make a goddam ounce of sense to me.

(Source: shortformblog)