VP would back ban on gay marriage
January 10, 2004 5:02 PM   Subscribe

VP would back ban on gay marriage Best guess: Bush won't try for an amendment so as not to lose potential votes for his party. But this does say something about the man next in line--if not already first--for the presidency.
posted by Postroad (36 comments total)
 
But this does say something about the man next in line--if not already first--for the presidency.

As a father, yes.
posted by machaus at 5:07 PM on January 10, 2004


As a 'conservative', as a father, and as an individual.

Can we say we're surprised? Not really. Or is this really just more pandering to the religious right-wing while not alienating voters by actually doing nothing on it.

You know, kind of like making an education plan to make people feel all warm and fuzzy, and then not funding it.
posted by benjh at 5:18 PM on January 10, 2004


You know, kind of like making a mars exploration plan to make people feel all warm and fuzzy, and then not funding it.
posted by quonsar at 5:20 PM on January 10, 2004


The thing that confuses me is why there can't be a fast track to civil unions that leaves out the issue of sexual activity at all. Why can't two spinster widows choose to share legal rights with each other? Why can't two male best friends who spend all of their time together choose the other as legal next of kin? This isn't an issue of whether the state sanctions Gay or Not-Gay, it's about being able to choose who you as a citizen want as your closest relative.

I have no trouble imagining that my widowed grandmother (rest her soul) and her best friend might have considered a civil union to streamline their access to the others private/legal life as they were inseperable in their final years. Whether they were carpet munching grannies seems totally irrelevant.
posted by shagoth at 5:24 PM on January 10, 2004


it's about being able to choose who you as a citizen want as your closest relative.

You can already do that with laws that exist. You can even leave your estate to your cat, should you so choose.

Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996.

More here, and here, and here.
posted by hama7 at 5:46 PM on January 10, 2004


Oh dont worry folks is bush get re-elected hes gonna try to am thru every right wing xtian agenda bit he can find. hes got nothing to lose an no one to alienate. He cant be elected again. That is unless of course he ram thru the amendment to remove the presidential term limit.
posted by MrLint at 5:50 PM on January 10, 2004


I wonder how this news bodes with mary cheney... dick's gay daughter.
posted by mcsweetie at 5:57 PM on January 10, 2004


It's pandering--and a shame that so many people are so ready to strip others of rights (we're entitled to them just like other americans) we haven't even won yet.
posted by amberglow at 5:59 PM on January 10, 2004


hama7, there's more to getting hitched than just inheritance.
posted by bshort at 6:06 PM on January 10, 2004


I think it's just an economic issue for Cheney. Do you KNOW how much weddings cost these days? If he gets the ban he knows he can just get that speedboat he always wanted.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:18 PM on January 10, 2004


I love being a second class citizen.
posted by Nelson at 7:11 PM on January 10, 2004


The mayor in Spin City said it best:

(words to the effect)

"I don't care. Let them get married if they want to. Why should they escape the Hell the rest of us have to go through?"
posted by emf at 7:30 PM on January 10, 2004


It's pandering

While I have absolutely no desire to discuss/argue/debate the topic of Same-Sex Marriage, I am curious about this statement.

How is this pandering? And who exactly is it pandering too?
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 7:57 PM on January 10, 2004


Steve, you've done enough political threads to know exactly what that means.

Statistically, the majority of those with the strongest convictions against homosexuality and the right for gays to marry will lean towards the (R) at the voting booth if they're motivated enough to go to one, and though mixed on gay rights a vocal opposition to the term "gay marriage" goes across the board.

It's pandering because it's clear that an amendment would never actually pass, so why not score some political points by supporting a constituency-favored conviction you'll never actually have to validate? This was a perfect opportunity for Cheney to appeal to a target constituency without actually having to do anything risky.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:13 PM on January 10, 2004


what XQUZ said--It's throwing a bone to, and reaffirming that Bush/Cheney agrees with their fundamentalist base. They know full well that the amendment wouldn't pass, but by appearing to support one, make it seem like they're actively doing something their base wants done.
posted by amberglow at 8:35 PM on January 10, 2004


fwiw, which may not be much, Don't Amend.
posted by Ufez Jones at 9:29 PM on January 10, 2004


great news links at the bottom of that, ufez--thanks
posted by amberglow at 9:35 PM on January 10, 2004


...but for the rest, it looks as if gay-bashing is not only accepted in the highest Republican circles but actually a prerequisite for leadership. ... Plenty of Republicans sicken at the hatreds expressed by their legislative leaders. But plenty or not, try to find a national Republican who speaks out for equality of sexual orientation or condemns the expressions of bias. --from Grand Old Gay Bashers in WaPo (from those links)
posted by amberglow at 9:42 PM on January 10, 2004


You can already do that with laws that exist. You can even leave your estate to your cat, should you so choose.

It's not about who you leave your estate to, it's who you choose to build a partnership with in life. It's about tax parity, and other financial benefits which are currently available automatically and without question to those who are in sanctioned hetero partnerships. It's about the right to make important decisions together, or in worst cases, for one another. It's about child custody and having whole, legal families in which to raise children. It's about being availed of over 1,000 benefits on the federal level alone -- while you're alive, and while you're able to enjoy no longer being relegated to a second-class status because of who you've chosen to bond with.

I've been disgruntled as a Republican for a long time, most especially about this issue. Cheney was actually my last, faint hope. Newt failed this test -- he was able to say that his sister deserved to be denied equality in society. I thought that perhaps the response would be different from Dick when realizing that he was speaking of his own child. I hoped too much of him, clearly. I've never been a single-issue voter, but it's getting harder and harder to hold my nose and pull a lever next to someone who can be this shortsighted and flat out wrong.
posted by Dreama at 10:09 PM on January 10, 2004


interesting column on how the "sanctity" of marriage is shit on by things like Britney Spear's quickie in Vegas.
posted by amberglow at 9:19 AM on January 11, 2004


John Derbyshire weighs in on Britney, making the point that the relative ease with which airheads marry and divorce should make the process more rigorous, not less.
posted by hama7 at 9:49 AM on January 11, 2004


Maybe it's pandering, maybe it's not, but think about this: why in the world would an incumbent Republican President, or Vice-President in this case, pander to voters to his right? The President is not competing for the nomination; that is pretty much a lock. He's not competing with the Democrats for these far right votes, as those votes would never go to a Democrat anyway.

I guess he could be trying to electrify the right, inciting the fringe to vote for him as opposed to not voting at all. The risk of alienating the middle in that scenario, however, seems far too high. The most likely conclusion I can draw, then, is that he really wants a ban on gay marriage.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 9:51 AM on January 11, 2004


I've been disgruntled as a Republican for a long time, most especially about this issue.

Not one of the things you mentioned is impossible now. Is the purpose of same-sex unions to "raise children"? If so, reasonably thorough explanations might be in order.

Given your interest in "tax parity", "financial benefits", and "1,000 benefits on the federal level", it's surprising that you self-identify as a Republican.

According to most Republican perspectives and beliefs, "support of the idea of the primacy of the individual" and the belief that "the best government is that which governs least", are not only Republican, but American ideals guaranteed constitutionally.

Why invoke the Federal Government as provider and parental ATM machine on this issue?

Andrew Hagen: Libertarian argument against.
posted by hama7 at 10:51 AM on January 11, 2004


Why invoke the Federal Government as provider and parental ATM machine on this issue?
Because the Federal Government acts as provider and parental ATM machine for the millions of straight couples who do marry?
posted by amberglow at 10:55 AM on January 11, 2004


Hama7: perhaps in the ideal sense Republicans believe as you assert but in the real world (and I'm not necessarily differentiating them from Democrats, mind you) they act to take whatever benefits they can from the government teat.
posted by billsaysthis at 12:11 PM on January 11, 2004


Because the Federal Government acts as provider and parental ATM machine for the millions of straight couples who do marry?

I must not have made my point clearly enough. The digestion of taxes by the Federal Government and re-distrubution of them to the proletariat runs counter to everything Republican. States weren't just invented to make the maps look pretty, they serve a very important purpose: to keep the Federal Government's control and power to a minimum, while protecting the rights of the individuals within the state.

The Federal Government is not the "provider" for it's citizens, nor the "parent", yet there is a ridiculous perception among socialists that this should be the case. In fact, because of the meddling of the Federal Government in economic affairs, and by going off the Gold Standard, inflation, and other things, the amount of spending power we have decreases every year. Ask your parents how much they spent for their first house, car, or other things, and today's price will be more like ten times that. Hardly the work of a "provider", unless "providing" suddenly means; "deigning to allow you to keep more of the increasingly worthless money you earn".

Does the Marriage Tax, which has, since 1969, "punished married couples when both spouses work", sound like "providing", when double-income families have become almost ubiquitous?

From Andrew Hagen's article above:

"Gay people have never been denied the ability to marry."

The issue here is to treat a same-sex union in exactly the same way as actual marriage, which it's not. When the government insinuates itself into the family and assumes greater responsibility for the upbringing of children, government welfare agencies gorge themselves on taxes, the family unit disintegrates because of the increasing intrusions from welfare agencies and Federal social engineering programs, and government becomes the bloated, cloying, immoral, thieving parent, to the delight of the socialist, who is, above all, against individualism and capitalism.

"Marriage does not exist to gratify two people or to make two people feel accepted. Marriage exists to create families and to bind them together. "

"Where there is no genetic tie between one generation and the next, the extended family structure will break down, if it ever really existed."

Maybe someday when science can produce genetic lines and families from single cells, this discussion will become more complicated.

"The architecture of the family is marriage. Marriage is to protect children. Marriage is between a man and a woman because the raising of children is best accomplished by the child's father and mother."

I would go further and add that the architecture of society is the family.

they act to take whatever benefits they can from the government teat.

They do, and big-government, bloated-welfare-program "Republicans" like our current President (admirable as he is on defense), do nothing to alter the misperception.
posted by hama7 at 12:36 PM on January 11, 2004


How about abolish government recognition of marriage, period?

What a concept!
posted by Ptrin at 2:26 PM on January 11, 2004


hama7, I guess there's a clear distinction between your Platonic ideal Republican and the actual Republican party. Can you name a single elected to major office (US house or senate, governor, say) Republican who pursues the ideals you're delineating?
posted by billsaysthis at 2:39 PM on January 11, 2004


The issue here is to treat a same-sex union in exactly the same way as actual marriage, which it's not.

Actually, the issue is not that at all, but Cheney's stance on said issue.

Can you name a single elected to major office (US house or senate, governor, say) Republican who pursues the ideals you're delineating?

As Republicans, they all should be, but there is probably as little concensus among Republicans as in any other group. What's most baffling to me is that with a majority of Republicans in the Senate and House, and in many of the state governments, that there is so little resistance to President Bush's power-spending and his mind-boggling amnesty plan for law-breaking illegal aliens, all for votes and not on conscience. Imagine the outraged criticism if Bush were a Democrat.

I can't think of any at the moment. I liked (retired) J.C. Watts, congressman from Oklahoma, though.
posted by hama7 at 3:06 PM on January 11, 2004


Not one of the things you mentioned is impossible now. Is the purpose of same-sex unions to "raise children"? If so, reasonably thorough explanations might be in order.

Reasonably thorough explanations of what? There are many -- and the number is growing -- gay couples who have children, but those families do not have the same legal protections as my family simply because we do not allow the parents to be legally married to one another. Do you deny this, or do you simply find it to be irrelevant? Or do you think it's immoral that gay people might raise children?

Given your interest in "tax parity", "financial benefits", and "1,000 benefits on the federal level", it's surprising that you self-identify as a Republican.

Why? Because I recognize reality? First of all, when I mention tax parity I mean between gay couples and straight couples, not across the board. When I mention financial benefits, I was not speaking of government benefits but things like rules concerning investments and retirement planning. Third, the 1,000s of benefits on the federal level already exist. Some I agree with, some I do not, most are a result of the bizarre complexities of tax code or Social Security which need to be diminished but they do exist now and they are denied to a segment of the population for no reason other than codified bigotry and that's unacceptable.

Why invoke the Federal Government as provider and parental ATM machine on this issue?

I'm not, I'm indicting the Federal Government as one layer of the repeated and institutional discrimination against gay citizens and stating that it is already at intolerable levels and anything further -- such as this half-assed attempt at an amendment to the Constitution -- would be beyond the boundaries of, well, frankly, basic human decency.
posted by Dreama at 7:12 PM on January 11, 2004


You can't get more traditional than this: NYT article today on 2 dad families, where one stays at home for the kids.
posted by amberglow at 5:08 AM on January 12, 2004


I sure hope Cheney gets a nice "Fuck you, Dad" from his daughter.
posted by callmejay at 9:11 AM on January 12, 2004


but those families do not have the same legal protections as my family simply because we do not allow the parents to be legally married to one another.

My comments have meandered, but I question the fundamental necessity of marriage and same-sex unions to be viewed as the same, because one is reproductive and the other is not. What people do in private is none of my business, but when they make it a matter of public policy, public opinions are bound to follow.

denied to a segment of the population for no reason other than codified bigotry and that's unacceptable.

I respect your view, but the concept of marriage does not extend to people who cannot genetically, or naturally reproduce. Culture plays an important part in this equation too, because American culture (and law in some cases) does not recognise polygamy, although analogies do not directly address the issue. "Bigotry" is an accusation which would be appropriate if this were an issue which found a place along racial or cultural lines, but I cannot see how the vagaries of sexuality can be construed as either racial or cultural, as much as those who espouse the hard left homosexual agenda of "sexual minority" would have us believe.

repeated and institutional discrimination against gay citizens

There is no repeated or institutional "discrimination" against gay people because it is a physical and mental impossibility, unless gays make their sexuality a public matter. Who cares otherwise? It's nobody's business.

When sexuality becomes the pivotal point of claims of discrimination and minority status, logic starts to tweak.

I appreciate your comments.
posted by hama7 at 5:10 PM on January 12, 2004


There is no repeated or institutional "discrimination" against gay people because it is a physical and mental impossibility, unless gays make their sexuality a public matter. Who cares otherwise? It's nobody's business.
You're wrong...closeted gay men and lesbians are denied the same rights as openly gay men and lesbians. It has nothing to do with making sexuality a public matter, altho if many brave people didn't step forward, the elected representatives and public at large wouldn't know of this unconstitutional denial of rights. You would rather people suffer in silence?
posted by amberglow at 5:14 PM on January 12, 2004


the elected representatives and public at large wouldn't know of this unconstitutional denial of rights.

Again, there is no denial of "rights", because marriage is not a right, but a choice that consenting adults of opposite sexes make for the purpose of reproduction, family, and heredity, among many other reasons.

The Constitution has nothing to do with it yet, but Cheney would support a Constitutional amendment to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, and it seems a sound idea.

Along the analogy lines, what would prevent a person from "marrying" him or herself? After all, if marriage is just a matter of semantics and "deconstruction", then the only limit is the imagination, right?

I place much of the blame on the bureaucratic Federal social services agencies, including adoption agencies, who have been courting, fanning, and encouraging this issue by awarding child custody adoption rights to single-parent households, and to same-sex couples. Again, pandering to the hard left homosexual "minority" agenda.

You would rather people suffer in silence?

Is "suffering" the appropriate term here? If a person wants to raise a family, which is possibly one of the most simultaneously rewarding and challenging decisions in life, then they are free to marry a person of the opposite sex and give it a whirl.
posted by hama7 at 4:45 PM on January 13, 2004


There is a denial of rights---rights that are bestowed on "spouses." Since it's illegal for gay people to marry, those rights are not allowed them, even if needed. Many gay and lesbian committed couples are right now raising families, and are in need of those rights, and deserve them, if not for them, for their children. When any opposite-sex couple of legal age can get married and bear children or not, and still be granted those rights and benefits if needed while many other (tax-paying) couples raising families and in need are denied them, there's something wrong.
posted by amberglow at 5:13 PM on January 13, 2004


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