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Shaken by History

I don’t make much of a secret of my politics, but I do try to keep them – at least somewhat – off this blog.

Jen wept last night. Me, I’m tougher.

I waited until this morning.

And for those of you who might’ve voted “yes” on California’s proposition 8, just a thought for you – substitute the word “Jewish” or “Catholic” or “black” or “Japanese” for the words “same sex.”

And yes, it is exactly the same thing.

25 Responses to Shaken by History

  1. resolute

    Since today is Guy Fawkes Day, I am watching V for Vendetta right now. Not for the scenes of a lone man fighting, no — but for the scenes of hope slowly dawning in a people, and those same people taking a stand at last.

    Yes, yes, it’s all very melodramatic of me, I know. But on some days the people do take their country back. Sometimes, some days, the people do rise up with hope in their hearts and reclaim their government.

  2. brigantia_65

    (delurking because this made me smile)

    My husband confessed to me that he utterly broke down at work last night after getting off the phone with his sobbing mess of a wife…on the condition that I don’t tell anyone. ;)

    And yes, I am utterly disappointed in the close-mindedness the majority of voters in that particular state chose to display by their choice last yesterday.

  3. andrewfarago

    SF Gate points out that Californians were much more concerned with the rights of chickens yesterday than they were for the rights of their fellow citizens.

    I think the misleading and outright lying “Yes on 8″ campaign had a lot to do with the outcome of this one. Enough people here bought into the idea that gay marriage was going to be taught in schools and that all churches were going to be forced to perform gay marriages or lose their tax-exempt status to give the “Yes on 8″ people the edge at the end of the night. Never mind the fact that marriage isn’t part of any regular school curriculum anywhere that I know of, and that churches probably *should* have to perform same-sex marriages if they want to retain their tax-exempt status…

  4. jeffrey

    The one hope we have is that prop. 8 is ahead by only a few hundred thousand votes, and there are still about three million provisional and mail-in ballots to be counted. So it may yet be shot down.

    Frankly, I’m disgusted with my state that it was even close.

  5. jeditigger

    THANK YOU for putting that bit about Prop 8 in such great terms that others can maybe appreciate, Greg. It’s just crappy that this fear and loathing of gays means that a group of people are excluded from their rights because of a happenstance of their birth. Reasons against gay marriages are based on religion, and standing against governmental recognition of gay marriages shatters that whole “separation of church and state” thing. Grrrrrrr.

    I’ve cried several times. I got misty-eyed again tonight. Thank God I lived to see this day. And thank God I have been able to find the hope I thought I’d never regain after 9/11.

  6. parakkum

    I’m holding out that hope as well, although the expectation is that these ballots will move in lockstep with the state as a whole. For these ballots to push it over to “No” on eight would require that basically all of them voted the way San Mateo county did, or better.

  7. parakkum

    That said, I am tremendously thankful that Prop 4 did not pass, as it was an even more toxic and potentially lethal version of parental notification than any of those previously placed on the ballot. The authors of Prop 4 clearly valued their moral stance above the health and wellbeing of young women.

  8. grocible

    The gay marriage bans, and the Arkansas ban on gays adopting children, is just disturbing.

    And yes, it is the same thing.

  9. filbypott

    I just don’t understand how people voting for Prop. 8 didn’t realize the gravity of changing their constitution to take away people’s rights.

  10. uzumerid

    People say every cloud has a silver lining, but it’s like the clear skies of an Obama presidency have a… shit lining?… thanks to Prop. 8. What a shame.

  11. revaladdinsane

    As someone who worked the polls yesterday, and met with fellow supporters today, this is only another step in the battle. We’re not only not finished, but this isn’t even as bad a setback as last time was. And this time we have the governor, attorney general, both senators and the President-Elect on our side.

    Once rights are given, it’s a lot harder to take them away, and we’re going to try and make sure they know.

    Here’s an example:

    The game isn’t over yet.

  12. odessasteps

    I have a feeling they mostly knew exactly what they are doing.

    I’ve been surprised at the number of people who are “confused” by the fact that Obama overwhelmingly won the state, but Prop 8 also passed.

    I assume (and this is an educated guess coming from the east coast) that it was strongly religious minorities (heavily Catholic Hispanics and regular church going black folks) that voted that way. I’d be curious if there are any other prevailing theories, esepcially from out there.

  13. supergodginrai

    Wait, that Prop 8 thing passed ?
    Are you kidding me ?!
    One hand, the country shows it’s changing, the other it’s more of the same.

    Comparing same sex couples to religions ? That’s not very nice for the same sex couples ;)

  14. richardhowe

    Yeah, last night was a real mixed bag here in California. Two steps forward, one step back. My hope is that another proposition can be gotten on the ballot, one which undoes 8 and explicitly spells out the right of same sex couples to marry. If it were to also mandate that those who willingly voted for 8 get a kick in the pants, I’d probably go along with that, too.

  15. omniguy

    Seriously, over here in the UK my Bex and I were up till nearly six watching it all unfold and there were shouts of joy, tears and victory dances going on much to our cat’s alarm.

    As for Prop. 8… I can’t believe after such a step forward there are people so desperate to undo it and subjugate others to their will. I hope it will still get destroyed by the remaining votes and if it isn’t, I hope that someone comes along and turns it back around again.

    Of all the things in the world to fight against, it beggars belief.

  16. lurkerwithout

    Some Hope Yet

    Apparantly any amendment to the CA constitution has to be reviewed by the legislature FIRST before being put to a vote. Which no one did it seems. The ACLU has already filed a writ to have the vote invalidated…

  17. nadefilippis

    Re: Some Hope Yet

    There’s a trick to the language. Amendments can be passed by a ballot initiative (though the idea that a school funding bond measure required 55% but amending the state’s friggin’ Constitution required a basic 50% is staggering).

    But revising the Constitution cannot be done without the consent of the Legislature.

    So the legal challenge is on the grounds that changing the constitution to (re)define marriage in a specific way is not amending it, but actually altering something already in place. That would be illegal.

    That’s only one of the challenges being filed. Others are based on the notion that it violates the equal protection clause of both the state and the U.S. Constitution.

    Plus, it hasn’t been ratified yet, as it passed by hundreds of thousands of votes, but 4 million absentee ballots are as of yet uncounted.

    The AP announced it had won, the religious right ran with that.

    But the State hasn’t declared the counting over, and the California Secretary of State said on NPR that they have until December to get the counting right, and that was her current intent.

    So stay tuned…

  18. parakkum

    Re: Some Hope Yet

    I’m hopeful about the legal challenges, but doubtful (unfortunately) about an impact of the remaining 4 million ballots. Unless they pretty much all came from San Mateo, Marin, and SF counties, the “no” votes won’t gain enough on the “yes” votes to tip it over the halfway point. Even my home county (Santa Clara) didn’t say no firmly enough for ballots from our area to make the difference.

  19. parakkum

    Your educated guess is an important part of it — albeit our guess centers more on the latino religious community than the African American one. That said, don’t underrate the role of baptists of all stripes here — there are massive, massive white and Asian baptist churches in all the major urban centers, and they tend to vote the fundamentalist line on social issues.

  20. anw

    God, I’ve cried about five times since the speech itself, so I’m not tough at all. Mind you, I’d only had four hours’ sleep.

  21. kali921

    The possible silver lining.

    The passing of Proposition 8 makes us look like absolutely troglodytes to the rest of the country AND the world. Remember that Prop 2 also passed in Florida – Prop 2 also banned gay marriage. God, Prop 8 was such a buzz kill for the general euphoria out here in San Francisco.

    But there is a silver lining to this. As soon as I saw that Prop 8 was going to pass, I knew that couples would immediately sue when it went into effect (and indeed, three couples filed suit yesterday), and one of three things will happen: the case will go to the California Supreme Court and Prop 8 will get struck down (again – remember Prop 22 in 2000?), or the case will go up to the Supreme Court and probably get struck down as unconstitutional, or the case will go to the Supreme Court and the Court will kick it back down to the state level.

    The first two outcomes may be very good news, particularly if a case makes it up to the Supreme Court, because even with the fascist and freakishly right wing majority in the Court right now, I cannot imagine the Supreme Court mandating an institutionalized form of discrimination.

  22. kali921

    We had a similar experience in San Francisco. As soon as McCain started to give his concession speech, people poured out into the streets all over the city, screaming in glee, hugging and kissing strangers, setting off fireworks, and the party lasted all night. But that was tempered with real and tangible grief about Prop 8, so when I cried during Obama’s speech (and sporadically throughout the rest of the night), it was joy mingled with great sadness.

    But three couples have already filed suit against Prop 8 and those cases will likely go to the California Supreme Court where Prop 8 will undoubtedly be struck down. If not, it may go all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States, and I can’t imagine even Justice Scalia voting to institutionalize discrimination. It’s odious even to the freakishly right wing traditionalist Justices on the Court.

  23. electricvinyl


    I voted No on Prop 8. I really thought there was no way in hell it would pass. I’m so disappointed in my state right now… :(

    On a side note, California’s Prop 2 also passed which fought the terrible treatment of egg laying chickens in cages.

    So what have we learned from this? Chicken rights? YES! Gay rights? NO!


  24. snagvictim

    It is exactly the same. My grandmother and I once went through her scrapbook and I saw that she had two different surnames in various documents from her childhood in Poland. She explained that this was because the local government didn’t recognize Jewish marriage, and would only record Jewish children under the mother’s surname, not the father’s. “If you weren’t married in their church, you weren’t married. This always meant a lot of hassles and trouble with papers and the government.”

  25. princess_allura

    Voted NO on 8

    There were several rallies last night in the Bay Area “No on 8″ committee. As of today Salano County, which voted YES on 8 is still handing out Gay Marriage certificates until they are offically told to stop. There so many problems with this Prop and unless you lived in an area that were making sure everyone was heavily involved and educated on the wording of the prop and the changes that would be made, you might have voted Yes by mistake. I can’t tell you how many people would call into the local radio stations completely confused and thought they were supposed to vote us on 8.
    As a side note, there was an ad running in SoCal that said “We don’t have to be tolerant”. Apartently it was pulled very quickly though.
    Most of my friends remain hopeful that we can get this thing changed/struck down, etc.

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