Thursday, July 27, 2006

From KATU news:

King County Executive Ron Sims and other supporters of gay rights are disappointed by Wednesday's state Supreme Court decision upholding the ban on gay marriage.

Sims hopes the next generation of legal minds will recognize a homosexual right to wed. He says his next step is to push for civil unions.

Um, no. That's like saying that back in the day people were hoping that judges would recognize a "Negro right to drink water". There's no such thing as a "homosexual right" any more than there's a "heterosexual right" or a "Jewish right" or a "Laosian right".

From Yahoo! News:

The state Supreme Court overruled two lower courts that had found the ban violated the Washington Constitution's "privileges and immunities" section.

The gay-marriage ban "is constitutional because the Legislature was entitled to believe that limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples furthers procreation, essential to survival," Justice Barbara Madsen wrote in the controlling opinion.

And how would allowing gays to marry hinder procreation? Are people going to stop fucking because Adam and Steve get hitched? Hell, part of the complaint of the 19 couples was "that they are victims of state-sanctioned discrimination that harms their children".

Meaning they already have children, you morons! Preventing them from marrying isn't going to help those children out!

At least one person in Washington has something of a brain:

In a dissent, Justice Mary Fairhurst said the majority improperly bowed to public opinion. "Unfortunately, the (majority) are willing to turn a blind eye to DOMA's discrimination because a popular majority still favors that discrimination," she wrote.

From the Washington Post:

"At the risk of sounding monotonous," the lead opinion said, "legislative bodies, not courts, hold the power to make public policy determinations." It added that where "no fundamental right is at stake, that power is nearly limitless."

The court ruled that gay couples challenging Washington's 1998 Defense of Marriage Act had failed to show that it denies them either a "fundamental right" or equal protection under the law. the risk of sounding intelligent and even mildly well-versed (mildly-versed?) on this topic, marriage IS a fundamental right, you assholes!

Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man," fundamental to our very existence and survival. Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535, 541 (1942).

In fact, I'm going to cite a passage from James Trosino's article "American Wedding: Same-Sex Marriage and the Miscegenation Analogy", omitting his footnotes:

Marriage regulation is traditionally the province of state legislatures. Marriage laws, like all laws, however, must not violate the United States Constitution. Federal court decisions regarding state regulation of marriage recognize marriage as a fundamental right. Under Fourteenth Amendment jurisprudence, state laws impinging fundamental rights are subject to strict scrutiny.

In Zablocki v. Redhail, the Court invalidated a Wisconsin statute that prohibited any person delinquent in paying child support from remarrying in the state. The Court applied strict scrutiny because the law "significantly interfere[d]" with the right to marry. The Court, however, cautioned against an overly broad interpretation of its holding:

By reaffirming the fundamental character of the right to marry, we do not mean to suggest that every state regulation which relates in any way to the incidents of or prerequisites for marriage must be subjected to rigorous scrutiny. To the contrary, reasonable regulations that do not significantly interfere with decisions to enter into the marital relationship may legitimately be imposed.

Prohibitions on gay marriage should--at least conceptually--implicate Zablocki's concern about laws that significantly interfere with the right to marry. In the context of same-sex marriage, however, courts have avoided the apparent mandate of Zablocki by defining marriage as excluding gay couples.

And, hell, let's also quote Chief Justice Kaye's dissenting opinion in Hernandez v. Robles:

Central to the right to marry is the right to marry the person of one's choice (see e.g. Crosby v State of N.Y., Workers' Compensation Bd., 57 NY2d 305, 312 [1982] ["clearly falling within (the right of privacy) are matters relating to the decision of whom one will marry"]; People v Shepard, 50 NY2d 640, 644 [1980] ["the government has been prevented from interfering with an individual's decision about whom to marry"]).

More from the Washington Post:

"Although marriage has evolved, it has not included a history and tradition of same-sex marriage in this nation or in Washington State," the opinion said.

Gah!!! What the hell!? Let's hear back from Chief Justice Kaye now:

Again and again, the Supreme Court and this Court have made clear that the right to marry is fundamental (see e.g. Loving v Virginia, 388 US 1 [1967]; Zablocki v Redhail, 434 US 374 [1978]; Turner v Safley, 482 US 78 [1987]; Matter of Doe v Coughlin, 71 NY2d 48, 52 [1987]; Cooper v Morin, 49 NY2d 69, 80 [1979]; Levin v Yeshiva Univ., 96 NY2d 484, 500 [2001] [Smith, J., concurring] ["marriage is a fundamental constitutional right"]).

The Court concludes, however, that same-sex marriage is not deeply rooted in tradition, and thus cannot implicate any fundamental liberty. But fundamental rights, once recognized, cannot be denied to particular groups on the ground that these groups have historically been denied those rights. Indeed, in recasting plaintiffs' invocation of their fundamental right to marry as a request for recognition of a "new" right to same-sex marriage, the Court misapprehends the nature of the liberty interest at stake. In Lawrence v Texas (539 US 558 [2003]), the Supreme Court warned against such error.

Lawrence overruled Bowers v Hardwick (478 US 186 [1986]), which had upheld a Georgia statute criminalizing sodomy. In so doing, the Lawrence Court criticized Bowers for framing the issue presented too narrowly. Declaring that "Bowers was not correct when it was decided, and it is not correct today" (539 US at 578), Lawrence explained that Bowers purported to analyze--erroneously-- whether the Constitution conferred a "fundamental right upon homosexuals to engage in sodomy" (539 US at 566 [citation omitted]). This was, however, the wrong question. The fundamental right at issue, properly framed, was the right to engage in private consensual sexual conduct--a right that applied to both homosexuals and heterosexuals alike. In narrowing the claimed liberty interest to embody the very exclusion being challenged, Bowers "disclose[d] the Court's own failure to appreciate the extent of the liberty at stake" (Lawrence, 539 US at 567).

The same failure is evident here.

Back to lunatic land:

It added that because state law prevents both sexes from entering into a same-sex marriage, it does not discriminate on the basis of sex.

Okay, if they passed the bar, then the judges should recognize the error in this. Separate but equal hasn't been recognized as valid for decades now. Which means, of course, that they just don't give a damn and are twisting the law and ignoring precedent so they can come to whatever conclusion fits their bigotry.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

From the Chicago Defender, May 17, 1947:

Random House, which will publish Sinclair Lewis' startling new novel, "Kingsblood Royal," on May 23 tried to get a rise out of Senator Bilbo by sending him a copy of the book and asking for comment. Bilbo either didn't know the book tells of the problems of a white man who suddenly discovers he has Negro blood, or didn't care. His reply to the publishers was: "I appreciate very much the copy of 'Kingsblood Royal' by Sinclair Lewis that you were kind enough to mail me. I am sure I shall enjoy reading it."

To give you an idea of why I find this so amusing, Senator Bilbo was the author of a book called Take Your Choice: Separation or Mongrelization, the full text of which is available on such web sites as The Church of True Israel and, which is hosted by Stormfront.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Gay people aren't like microwaves:

Candace Gingrich, the younger sister of former Republican U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., stressed the importance of defeating the measure that Virginians will decide on Nov. 7.


When she came out and revealed her homosexuality to her 60-year-old mother in the mid-1980s, Gingrich recalled, "she took a deep breath and said, 'Well, you're going to have to give your dad and I some time to get used to that because when we were growing up, they didn't have gay people.'" as the audience broke into laughter.

"I explained to Mom that it wasn't like color television or microwaves -- there were gay people when she was growing up; she just didn't know they were gay people."


Friday, July 21, 2006

Judge rules N.C. anti-cohabitation law unconstitutional

A state judge has ruled that North Carolina's 201-year-old law barring unmarried couples from living together is unconstitutional.


State Superior Court Judge Benjamin Alford issued the ruling late Wednesday, saying the law violated Hobbs' constitutional right to liberty. He cited the 2003 U.S. Supreme Court case titled Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down a Texas sodomy law.

"The Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas stands for the proposition that the government has no business regulating relationships between two consenting adults in the privacy of their own home," Jennifer Rudinger, executive director of the ACLU of North Carolina, said in a statement.

She added that "the idea that the government would criminalize people's choice to live together out of wedlock in this day and age defies logic and common sense."


Thursday, July 20, 2006

From a May 15, 1983 New York Times article:

A number of Canadian writers have been debunking the view that Canadian Governments have almost always been well-meaning, fair and incorruptible, somehow purer than those in the United States.

In one of the most successful of these books, "But Not In Canada," Walter Stewart, a Canadian journalist, gives a systematic account of little-known Candian actions and policies that contradict the comfortable national image. Among these, Mr. Stewart describes immigration policies that excluded Chinese, Japanese, East Indians and Jews. He tells of how some 34,000 Canadians of Japanese ancestry were banished from British Columbia at the start of World War II -- dispossessed, disenfranchised, interned and later scattered about the country, and not permitted to return to British Columbia until five years after the end of the war. His conclusion is that the treatment of Japanese-Canadians during that period was even harsher than that of the Japanese-Americans who were rounded up and placed in internment camps after Pearl Harbor. Moreover, unlike the Japanese in the United States, the Japanese-Canadians have yet to receive formal apologies or legal redress for their injuries.


Sunday, July 16, 2006

Via Professor Myers, I am introduced to Godchecker, an on-line database of nearly 3,000 deities from all over the world.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Darwin's finches continue to prove evolution:

A medium sized species of Darwin's finch has evolved a smaller beak to take advantage of different seeds just two decades after the arrival of a larger rival for its original food source.

The altered beak size shows that species competing for food can undergo evolutionary change, said Peter Grant of Princeton University, lead author of the report appearing in Friday's issue of the journal Science.

And speaking of interesting animals, or animals at any rate, meerkats teach their young:

While the young of many species learn by observing older members of their group, it's less common for adults to take direct actions with the only goal being teaching.

Researchers from the University of Cambridge in England observed meerkats gradually introducing cubs to prey, showing them how to handle captured insects and even removing the stingers from scorpions before giving them to youngsters.

Perhaps you don't quite grasp how awesome that is.

There are countless examples of animals learning simply by observation, he said, citing the spread of milk-bottle opening by birds in Britain as an example.

The difference is in such cases the experienced animal doesn't have to make any changes in its behavior for others to learn from it.

"For example, if a chimpanzee infant sees his mother probing for termites using a stick and later finds the stick his mother used, tries it out himself and learns how to fish for ants, there is no element of teaching involved," he explained.

In the case of the meerkats, however, the older animal catches prey and presents it, either dead or alive to the youngster so it can learn to handle it — an activity that does not benefit the older animal.


Friday, July 14, 2006

Did you think that Indiana was a safe place to live? Or Louisville? You sick, deluded fool!

The National Asset Database, as it is known, is so flawed, the inspector general found, that as of January, Indiana, with 8,591 potential terrorist targets, had 50 percent more listed sites than New York (5,687) and more than twice as many as California (3,212), ranking the state the most target-rich place in the nation.

The database is used by the Homeland Security Department to help divvy up the hundreds of millions of dollars in antiterrorism grants each year, including the program announced in May that cut money to New York City and Washington by 40 percent, while significantly increasing spending for cities including Louisville, Ky., and Omaha.

And what are these sites targeted by terrorists?

Old MacDonald’s Petting Zoo, the Amish Country Popcorn factory, the Mule Day Parade, the Sweetwater Flea Market and an unspecified "Beach at End of a Street."


"Nix's Check Cashing," "Mall at Sears," "Ice Cream Parlor," "Tackle Shop," "Donut Shop," "Anti-Cruelty Society" and "Bean Fest."

Now I'm afraid. What if those terrorists decide to target the Crawford County Coon-hunters Club?
Valerie Plame sues Dick Cheney, Lewis Libby, and Karl Rove.

Sunday, July 9, 2006

According to the Texas constitution:

No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being.


Friday, July 7, 2006

I downloaded the court's decision in Hernandez v. Robles, the New York case decided just a few days ago upholding the ban on gay marriage.

The majority and concurring opinions are terrible, wretched logic and horribly infuriating, but the dissenting opinion is well worth a read.

Tuesday, July 4, 2006

[16:39] <Ali-Sama> they need to bring howard into the civil war story arc
[16:40] <Duo002> Howard?
[16:40] <Duo002> the duck?
[16:43] <Ali-Sama> yeah

An excellent idea, really.

Monday, July 3, 2006

Crazy Alaskan Senator Ted Stevens explains the internet.
Introducing smell-o-vision!

Sunday, July 2, 2006

Searching the local library's database for Jim Crow, I find that the second result is "Garfield Eats Crow".

This probably says something about our society.