The Federal Prop. 8 Trial / Gay Marriage Catch-All

No one against gay marriage considers herself hateful. The number of self-described bigots in the world is pretty small.

But Bloo's hitting on something here that I think has weight beyond just marriage equality. It's that cross section of libertarians and conservatives, who strongly believe in their rights to believe whatever they want, as well as the rights of everyone else to act accordingly. Disagreement is tolerated so long as action isn't taken. They've been the dealer at the poker table for so long that they're used to people complaining when the blinds increase, but are shocked when half the table refuses to pay.

This is the same argument driving the contraception debate. Personally, I think it's the same argument driving the gun control debate as well. People's invisible circle defining where their rights end and others' rights begin are drawn wayyy too far outside their private property.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
Edwin wrote:

I would call that hateful through ignorance.

Agreed. Maybe this is bad, but I'm really not in the mood to let the hateful off the hook anymore or coddle their hate with delicate words. Ignorant hate, malicious hate, whatever, I doubt there's much difference to the oppressed. Yeah, flies with honey, but I also have my doubts that honey will work on those flies.

You know, I'm not letting anyone off the hook. What I'm saying is that it's just too easy to look at someone who makes choices or espouses viewpoints like this, and sum them up with one inaccurate word - hateful. What comes to mind when you say/think the word hateful? It's not a whole, complete person. It's some angry asshat probably going out of their way to hate and persecute others. I have a problem with the use of the word and it may seem like nitpicking, but I think it contributes to the problem.

It's not different to the oppressed, but your statement above really drives my point home. Because they do not agree with gay marriage, they're idiots and ignorant people who will never be open to discussion or changing their minds, and thus should just be shoved into the same box with folks like the Phelps family. I moved from one place to another that is full of people who are against gay marriage, but they're reasonable people in a lot of their daily lives. I've talked with many of them, and their opinions have come around over time. You know why? Because they've been exposed to others and learned to see them as complete and whole individuals, not just a pile of stereotypes and outside observations. That worked because they were likewise treated as humans to have discourse with, not a pile of stereotypes and outside observations.

So if you want to treat someone like those people in the phone calls - many of which were obviously not in crusade mode and could likely come around eventually - the same as our friend Rick Santorum in the idea that we're coddling the hateful who should just be punished and have their nose rubbed in it, I think that is in turn somewhat hateful and unfair as well. There is a spectrum of people opposed to gay marriage, not just one flavor of ignorant, backward idiot that we just need to wait to die off.

There's a difference between being morally opposed to gay marriage and preventing those that do want it from participating in it. The thing that makes it hateful is that they think their opinion on the subject should take precedence over the freedom of the people it'd directly effect.

I had the opportunity to vote No on the amendment to Minnesota's constitution to ban gay marriage, which isn't even legal anyways. Polls show it's probably getting shot down.

In a year or two, I'm looking forward to the opportunity to vote for an amendment to treat all human beings with equitable decency and let people damn well get married to whomever they please.

Bloo Driver wrote:

You know, I'm not letting anyone off the hook.

I disagree. If a person takes hateful actions, and I'd say opposing equality is a hateful action, any justifications or delusions they may have do not change that action, and as I said, it matters not a whit if the person taking that actions believes they did what they did out of love for the eternal soul, or whatever other reason they have, to the oppressed. Voting against equality is a material act with a material effect on the material world--the immaterial doesn't change it.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I moved from one place to another that is full of people who are against gay marriage, but they're reasonable people in a lot of their daily lives.

I still live in a place full of people who are against gay marriage. They are indeed reasonable people in a lot of their daily lives. Human beings are like that. But the thing is, where I am, many of those people have a very large, very organized culture buttressing them in their hate, yes, hate, telling them their hate is actually virtuous and comes from a place of love, and they've been raised to fall in line and follow. Furthermore they cast themselves as the victims, kinda in the same manner as the rest of your post. I've seen "Please hear out our perspective before you judge us," bandied about many a-time, and I don't think it's a plea worthy of hearing. It's actually pretty sickening, begging for acceptance of ignorance. I'm a pretty intolerant person, I admit--I don't have much tolerance for hypocrisy or self-deception. So, if someone supports hate, I'm going to say they're hateful. If they don't want to be called ignorant and hateful, maybe they shouldn't be those things, eh?

Many of those people will come around through experience. I know a bunch who have. It's great. But many others will never come around no matter how much experience and perspective they get, if they bother to seek such things out at all. Not much reason to kid glove them until they change, if they change.

But it seems you assume I must be foaming at the mouth all the time, constantly calling people Worse than Phelps. You shouldn't. I seem very reasonable in a lot of my daily life.

I made this post on G+ this morning, but felt like sharing it here.

Today, in the United States, we do a remarkable thing. We enter a small, enclosed area, and push buttons on electronic screens, check boxes on pieces of paper, or pull mechanical levers, all to control, to some extent, the world we want to live in, from the kinds of votes that will affect our next door neighbors, to the kinds of votes that will affect someone living in an entirely different state.

You all know me, to some extent, but most likely have learned something about me in the past year that you didn't know before. All kinds of political issues are rolling around in my head, but it is hard for any one of them to be as personal as my human rights. When you enter the voting booth today, think of me. Think of how what you do may affect my happiness from this day forward. Think of thousands in this country older than me who have been fighting for decades to have a better world. Think of all of the young people still growing into a world that wants to tell them they are faulty, and less of a person because of who they love. Think of your own happiness, how you achieved it, and what you have gained because of it. If you are married, look into the eyes of your spouse and savor those feelings for a moment. Think of that button, or paper, or lever, and consider that it only takes such a simple action to make a difference. To decide whether or not you want to encourage the idea that people should not be able to look into the eyes of someone and feel the same way, even though their gender is the same, and be able to call them their spouse.

I am a gay man. One day, I hope to be with the man I love, and to shoulder every burden, hope, fear, joy, sorrow, consequence, and benefit that comes with those rights. Please, think before you vote against that for me.

Very well written, Mike. Huge thumbs up.

Part of what motivated me to make sure I voted this election was because there's a push to vote out the Iowa justices who stood for equal marriage rights, and I wanted to be sure to vote that we keep them in.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:

You know, I'm not letting anyone off the hook.

I disagree. If a person takes hateful actions, and I'd say opposing equality is a hateful action, any justifications or delusions they may have do not change that action, and as I said, it matters not a whit if the person taking that actions believes they did what they did out of love for the eternal soul, or whatever other reason they have, to the oppressed. Voting against equality is a material act with a material effect on the material world--the immaterial doesn't change it.

I don't think you're reading what I'm actually typing, but I don't find myself shocked at this very much. My point is very obviously not that these people are to be forgiven and their actions ignored, but that there are different types of people who produce this behavior for different reasons. It's pointless and actually more of the same problem to treat them all the same. It matters in that you can possibly approach and speak with these people rather than point at and condemn them.

Many of those people will come around through experience. I know a bunch who have. It's great. But many others will never come around no matter how much experience and perspective they get, if they bother to seek such things out at all. Not much reason to kid glove them until they change, if they change.

The disconnect here is shocking. "Let's hope people just change from other influences rather than find the people we might reach out to and in fact reach out to them. In the meantime, let's not bother treating them any different than someone who will never change their mind ever, because finding out the difference between these people is just useless. PS why won't people take the time to understand their fellow human being?"

But it seems you assume I must be foaming at the mouth all the time, constantly calling people Worse than Phelps. You shouldn't. I seem very reasonable in a lot of my daily life.

I never said much that actually implied that at all. What I actually said was -

It's not different to the oppressed, but your statement above really drives my point home. Because they do not agree with gay marriage, they're idiots and ignorant people who will never be open to discussion or changing their minds, and thus should just be shoved into the same box with folks like the Phelps family.

...

So if you want to treat someone like those people in the phone calls - many of which were obviously not in crusade mode and could likely come around eventually - the same as our friend Rick Santorum in the idea that we're coddling the hateful who should just be punished and have their nose rubbed in it, I think that is in turn somewhat hateful and unfair as well. There is a spectrum of people opposed to gay marriage, not just one flavor of ignorant, backward idiot that we just need to wait to die off.

I have some guesses how you treat one group or the other (my guess: the same!), but I don't think you're constantly running around shouting at them and trying to yell at them at any chance. Nothing I said implied that, but you felt the need to twist my statement, which was very neutral about your behavior, into something I didn't say so you can paint me as someone making poor assumptions about others. I wish you wouldn't.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I don't think you're reading what I'm actually typing, but I don't find myself shocked at this very much. My point is very obviously not that these people are to be forgiven and their actions ignored, but that there are different types of people who produce this behavior for different reasons. It's pointless and actually more of the same problem to treat them all the same. It matters in that you can possibly approach and speak with these people rather than point at and condemn them.

You're clearly not reading my point, which is that how they ended up at hate does not matter.

Bloo Driver wrote:

The disconnect here is shocking.

Holding people accountable for their actions, good or ill, and changing that perception according to those actions is a disconnect? When people do a thing, calling them doers of that thing, and then when they stop doing that thing, ceasing is a disconnect? I find that shocking.

Bloo Driver wrote:

Nothing I said implied that, but you felt the need to twist my statement, which was very neutral about your behavior,

Truly?

Bloo Driver wrote:

Because they do not agree with gay marriage, they're idiots and ignorant people who will never be open to discussion or changing their minds, and thus should just be shoved into the same box with folks like the Phelps family.

Bloo Driver wrote:

It's pointless and actually more of the same problem to treat them all the same. It matters in that you can possibly approach and speak with these people rather than point at and condemn them.

Hmmm...

See, my real issue, is I dislike the language of tolerance being co-opted to support the intolerant. As a society, we "point at and condemn" racists, rightly, because they believe things that are in direct opposition to our ideals, the things we claim we are. Equality, Justice, that sort of thing. Being respectful of a "lifestyle" centered on disrespecting another lifestyle is beyond absurd.

Bloo Driver wrote:

PS why won't people take the time to understand their fellow human being?"

All sorts of reasons, I assume. Ignorance, fear, limited opportunity, cultural pressure, and sometimes outright malice would be my top guesses. It may seem strange but it happens. Check Rev's link one page previous: that representative persists in oppressing his own brother's rights. What closer experience could he have? And he still insists he loves his brother, and even his brother's widower. I don't see much wrong in saying this guy does not, in fact, love his brother, his actions are so hateful toward his brother's memory.

NSMike wrote:

Compelling Things

Indeed, quality post. I'm sure it reached those ready to take in its import.

I think you two are talking about two different types of people. Bloo seems to be talking about people that don't like gay marriage, and SpacePPoliceman seems to be talking about people that not only don't like it, but are actively working to limit the rights of gay people. I agree that someone that doesn't approve of gay marriage (or gay people in general) doesn't necessarily hate them (at least not with the full potency the word can have). I also agree that hate can be appropriate word for how people who work against gay rights feel about gay people.

I think Space's interpretation of what you were implying about his behavior is fair based on the following:

Bloo Driver wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Agreed. Maybe this is bad, but I'm really not in the mood to let the hateful off the hook anymore or coddle their hate with delicate words. Ignorant hate, malicious hate, whatever, I doubt there's much difference to the oppressed. Yeah, flies with honey, but I also have my doubts that honey will work on those flies.

It's not different to the oppressed, but your statement above really drives my point home. Because they do not agree with gay marriage, they're idiots and ignorant people who will never be open to discussion or changing their minds, and thus should just be shoved into the same box with folks like the Phelps family.

Edit: Pointless, childish outburst.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:

What do you think is going on here, exactly?

Well, I thought we were discussing perspectives, but after "Screw that and screw you," clearly I was wrong. So, fair enough, I won't bother. Carry on.

I'm gonna take that all down because it certainly wasn't fair or useful. But I will just mention that I hardly think your replies stood firmly in the territory of only discussing perspectives.

Edit: Good faith.

Stengah wrote:

I think you two are talking about two different types of people. Bloo seems to be talking about people that don't like gay marriage, and SpacePPoliceman seems to be talking about people that not only don't like it, but are actively working to limit the rights of gay people. I agree that someone that doesn't approve of gay marriage (or gay people in general) doesn't necessarily hate them (at least not with the full potency the word can have). I also agree that hate can be appropriate word for how people who work against gay rights feel about gay people.

I just find the word "hate" so simple and flat when it is being used to describe a wide array of behaviors. It feels like cheating, really.

Also, no, to be clear - I am also including people who would vote down gay marriage in my assessment. If that's what you mean by "actively working", anyway. I mean, giving away thousands of dollars to stop marriage equality is a pretty terrible act, no bones about it. But there has to be more to it than just saying, "Oh, what hateful people!"

I think Space's interpretation of what you were implying about his behavior is fair based on the following:
Bloo Driver wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Agreed. Maybe this is bad, but I'm really not in the mood to let the hateful off the hook anymore or coddle their hate with delicate words. Ignorant hate, malicious hate, whatever, I doubt there's much difference to the oppressed. Yeah, flies with honey, but I also have my doubts that honey will work on those flies.

It's not different to the oppressed, but your statement above really drives my point home. Because they do not agree with gay marriage, they're idiots and ignorant people who will never be open to discussion or changing their minds, and thus should just be shoved into the same box with folks like the Phelps family.

I still disagree. What I said to what he equivocated it to was grossly inequal, but he seems far more concerned about chopping up text to make it easier to distort than to actually take on what I'm speaking to. Which is fine, it's the Internet. I should be a little more inured to it at this point.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I still disagree. What I said to what he equivocated it to was grossly inequal, but he seems far more concerned about chopping up text to make it easier to distort than to actually take on what I'm speaking to. Which is fine, it's the Internet. I should be a little more inured to it at this point.

You know...my first two posts were quite wordy on my opinions, my next less so because I was just restating and being put on the defensive. So, if you think anything I clipped was that far out of context, then you definitely need to become more inured, and we'll leave that as the last word?

Gay marriage. Anything new in it?

I'm really tempted to go hang at a friend's place in Capitol Hill tonight, Seattle's nominal gay neighbourhood, so I can watch the entire place go batsh*t-nuts when the gay marriage initiative passes.

But alas, I am old and employed, and I need my beauty sleep.

I think that part of the problem may be that "bigot" became something of a taboo word. It more accurately describes the attitude. In both of these cases, the good old Ill Doctrine "what you are vs what you did" distinction also applies.

So: these people may not see themselves as bad people. They may not feel that they hate gays. But they most certainly act in a manner which is bigoted towards gays.

And, to me, that's a huge reason to refer to this as bigotry over referring to it as hate. We mean the same thing when we say these things, but while anything involving the word "hate" implies a certain emotional state in the actor, "bigotry" (to me, anyway) implies it less. Specifically, if you say that someone is acting in a hateful manner, you're still implying a mental state. That makes it a lot harder to stay in the "what you did" conversation.

Speaking in terms of "prejudice" is perhaps even better, but all of these words have problems of semantic drift and taboo due to their connotations.

Edit because I'm too excited and can't wait for no stinkin' poles to be finalized.

I think Question 6 is gonna do well, Wizard. I hope so.

Marylanders for Marriage Equality
We did it!

This is a monumental victory. Tonight Marylanders across the state stood up and affirmed our longstanding tradition of supporting fairness, equality, and religious freedom. As the crowd cheers at the Baltimore Soundstage, ripples are being felt across the country as we stand up proudly as the first state in the nation to approve civil marriage for all loving, committed families.

Legislatures and courts have legalized marriage equality in six states and the District of Columbia. Maryland is the first state to legalize same-sex marriage through a vote of the people.

Tonight’s win would not have been possible without the unparalleled leadership of Governor O’Malley, the resolve of the LGBT Caucus in the legislature, and the exemplary commitment of the Human Rights Campaign, which has been here day in and day out for more than a year working for full equality.

Most importantly, we want to thank Marylanders just like you - everyday people who took a chance, stood up for their values and stood in long lines to cast a ballot that would make a mark on history.

We did it. We won for families, for fairness, for equality.

We just changed history. Thank you.

Josh Levin
Campaign Manager

On Behalf of the Marylanders for Marriage Equality Coalition and Staff

I support the crab cake of equality

You know, as stupid as it ever was to accept that people should vote to discriminate or not, at least the whole "it has never passed a State vote" line isn't valid anymore. I approve of even this small amount of forward progress.

Marriage equality is passing in Maine by 8 point. EIGHT POINTS!

That is amazing.

Phoenix Rev wrote:

Marriage equality is passing in Maine by 8 point. EIGHT POINTS!

That is amazing.

Lobster and Crabcake have both come out for civil rights. Crustaceans ftw

WA gay marriage R-74 ahead 52-48, 66k margin, leading in 8 of 39 counties, including King (65-35). Map: http://t.co/HFErs5se

FYI - Gay marriage is now legal in every state in New England except Rhode Island.

I believe every gay marriage issue that was on a ballot (4 in all) landed in favor of gay marriage.

This essentially flips over the depressing feelings I had after the Chik-Fil-A nonsense. I'm not sure why I considered people eating chicken valid in the first place. This is far more satisfying.

Nice to see NOM's lies didn't work a second time! (Still disappointed it worked the first time though).

Oh well, it's certainly nice to share the historic milestone with Maryland.

The constitutional amendment in Minnesota to ban gay marriage was defeated. It's not even legal as of yet; it was a pre-emptive strike of bigotry to stop any future "activist judges" (those people who have an unfortunate tendency to actually read the Constitution) from making it legal in a court case. So, nothing has changed as of yet, except I am really damn proud to live here. Now when do we get to line up and vote Yes like Maryland, Maine, and Washington did?

Tanglebones wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:

Marriage equality is passing in Maine by 8 point. EIGHT POINTS!

That is amazing.

Lobster and Crabcake have both come out for civil rights. Crustaceans ftw

Yes, but the bible teaches us that crustaceans are evil.

Snark aside, it is awesome to see that progress is being made.