Alex Blaze

Let's not resort to process arguments....

Filed By Alex Blaze | May 29, 2008 2:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Marriage Equality, Politics, The Movement
Tags: California, California State Supreme Court, Democrats, marriage, Obama appointments, Rebecca Hagelin, Republican, supreme court, Townhall

Rebecca Hagelin is a conservative who thinks she cares about democracy:

If you've ever wondered why liberals fight tooth and nail whenever it comes to confirming judges, just look to California.

There, in another outrageous example of judicial over-reach and leftist social experimentation, the state Supreme Court ruled on May 15 in favor of homosexual "marriages." Specifically, it overturned a 2000 referendum on Proposition 22, in which California voters -- i.e., the people --affirmed, nearly 2-to-1, that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.

Sorry, voters: You only think you know best. Your judicial overlords know better. Now run along, like good subjects.

Ugh. Answers after the jump.

  1. California's legislature passed legislation that would have opened marriage up to same-sex couples. Twice. And who chose those legislators? That's right, California voters -- i.e., the people.

    But the Republican governor didn't like the people's decision, so he vetoed it. And if anyone actually looks like an overlord, it's him.

  2. A new Field Poll out today shows that the Californian citizens favor same-sex marriage by a simple majority (h/t Devilstower):

    For the first time ever, a statewide survey reports a majority of California voters favor gay marriage - a finding that pollsters describe as a milestone driven by younger people.

    The Field Poll result, released today, shows the highest level of support in more than three decades of polling Californians on the hot-button issue of same-sex marriage laws. The poll found 51 percent of registered voters favor the idea of allowing gay and lesbian couples to wed, while 42 percent disapprove.

    51-42? That's better than the spread GWB won by in 2004, and much better than the spread he lost by in 2000.

    Oh, and Poblano's calculations show that Field Poll has been the 6th most accurate polling outfit of the 32 he's followed this season. Don't mess with Field Poll.

  3. Those judges are part of a liberal over-reach conspiracy? Well, apparently it's Republicans who are over-reaching to let the gays and dogs and box turtles marry:

    Since 6 of the 7 Justices are Republicans, appointed by Republican governors--including 3 of the 4 in the majority, this is either ignorant or just demagoguery. What is the partisan agenda of the Republican Chief Justice Ronal George who wrote the court's decision and who was appointed by Republican Pete Wilson? Or that of Kathryn Werdegar, another registered Republican, also appointed by Wilson? Or that Republican Justice Joyce Kennard, appointed by that Republican Governor George Deukmejian?

  4. The Court didn't just type away, they interpreted the Constitution, which bans discrimination and which has long been interpreted as including a fundamental right to marry. The Constitution is law that was approved by the people, wasn't it? And if they didn't want a fundamental right to marry or a ban on discrimination, then why didn't the people of California lead a drive to amend their constitution?
It doesn't matter, though, since democracy arguments are usually empty. It's "Let the people vote!" if someone thinks that they can win in that venue, but it's "Don't let people vote!" if they think they can't.

Consider this from the same article:

The fact is, the California Supreme Court has indulged here in the purest form of judicial activism -- operating not from a desire to interpret the law as written, but to force the result it wanted from the beginning, regardless of whether it was correct (or whether it violated the will of the people).

So which standard should be used, Ms. Hagelin? The will of the people? The law as written?

Who gets to interpret the law as written? How do we know what the will of the people is? The specifics within each of those questions are huge, let alone deciding which one to follow, and the best answer to each question falls on the side of allowing same-sex marriage.

Not that it matters, since the Court's decisions aren't supposed to be about the "will of the people." That's why they don't hand out little voting remote controls to the gallery before they make a decision. And the Court already interpreted the law. So it seems like Hagelin's favored democratic process is "Whichever questions, interpretations, or rules give me the answer I want."

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Of course, it's totally not judicial overreach when the courts validate Bush's refusal to grant habeas corpus, a right that predates the Constitution in the English Speaking world by more than 500 years.

I can marry a box turtle?!?!?!


How it's going in Alabama.

I posted my hoorays about the California decision to the hsv.general USENET newsgroup right after it came down, and in fact got some hoorays back. But, this is Alabama, I got some Argumentum Ad Vir In Canis (argument from man on dog) replies back, but...

(a) They all looked canned. "If you extend marriage rights to gay people, why now polyamory, marrying your sister...." You get it. Not just the same ideas, the same examples and even the same words.

(b) They're all from the same bunch of anonymous right-wing posters who can be relied on to oppose everything from letting black people vote to penicillin.

(c) I hit them with "Nobody's talking about extending a goddamn thing. Equal marriage rights are the law of the land in CA. So if you want to talk about discriminating on the base of race, gender, or sexual orientation, make your case."

(d)Seriously they shut up. Did I dazzle them with eloquence? Not bloody likely.

(e) I didn't even have to use the Argumentum Ad Pier: When you go walking on a pier, do you keep walking until you go off the end right into the sea? So why the hell do we have to "extend' marriage rights to cousins and children and dogs and cats and parakeets, assuming we were extending anything in the first place?

(f) Once again, I didn't have to say that. Maybe some of the fight's gone out of them.

Not that I think this is a great time to come out in Alabama, nor do I think this is a good time to take a nice nap when big money is against pretty much everything that looks like freedom, but a change might be possible.

BGS~ It's not judicial over-reach either, apparently, when the Supreme Court splits on party lines to make GWB president.

Sean~ Oh, totally. I'm already looking for a cute little dress for Snappy.

Rev~ Tide's turning. That's why we aren't going to see McCain out in full gay-hating force as his predecessor was. It's not that he likes us any more, it's just not going to work as it did before.