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Wedding Bells Toll, But Not For You
May 18, 2006 9:29 AM   Subscribe

NewsFilter: Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the chapel, teh gay menace strikes again. The GOP-dominated Senate Judiciary Committee backs the Constitutional amendment to prohibit states from recognizing same-sex marriages. In a fractious hearing, Republican chairman Arlen Specter shouted "Good riddance!" when Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin) walked out. Laura Bush recently advised her party's candidates not to campaign on this issue and to handle it with "great sensitivity." Maybe next time.
posted by digaman (99 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
OH GOD! I GOTTA VOTE REPUBLICAN AAAHHHHHHH!!!!
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 9:30 AM on May 18, 2006


The GOP has decided they no longer need the black vote, the latino vote or the gay vote. They must be putting an awful lot of faith in the Diebold vote.
posted by fleetmouse at 9:31 AM on May 18, 2006


Feingold has been in the news for other things lately, as discussed here.
posted by digaman at 9:32 AM on May 18, 2006


The GOP has decided they no longer need the black vote, the latino vote or the gay vote.

Nevermind the vote.
posted by Witty at 9:37 AM on May 18, 2006


"Good Riddance" is the new Republican mantra. Civil rights? Human rights? Checks & balances? The Bill of Rights? Good riddance!
posted by fandango_matt at 9:37 AM on May 18, 2006


If it feels good, good riddance.
posted by Mr. Six at 9:42 AM on May 18, 2006


Maybe they can build a fence around the altar and deploy the National Guard so gays can't sneak in and get married illegally.
posted by digaman at 9:42 AM on May 18, 2006 [1 favorite]


jeez, these cranky old white men just can't die soon enough...
posted by troybob at 9:46 AM on May 18, 2006


The GOP has decided they no longer need the black vote, the latino vote or the gay vote.

Umm... they decided this in 1964.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:47 AM on May 18, 2006


Gayest amendment evar.

Silver lining discussed here.
posted by ibmcginty at 9:48 AM on May 18, 2006


On a more serious note, the GOP knows the only way it can shore up an increasingly shrinking base of voters is on these social issues. Already they are ramping up their astroturfing efforts by putting "grassroots" organizations on radio and television stations to advertise their party's stance on legislating sexual and other behaviors. It gets the base riled up.
posted by Mr. Six at 9:49 AM on May 18, 2006


Election Year? Check
Rovian Politics? Check
Wedge issue? Check

Yep lets talk about something other than everything that wrong with this country. Y'know like war, deficits, civil liberties and our slipping grasp of the the "World Leader" moniker.
posted by aaronscool at 9:49 AM on May 18, 2006


It's a futile gesture. It won't last long on the Senate floor, and all it serves to do is identify those who are paid by the religious right to do their bidding.

Sen. Spector is going to regret the reporting on that utterance.
posted by FormlessOne at 9:49 AM on May 18, 2006


Strikes me as a useful piece of political theater for both Senators. The MeFi Horde is provided with a swell thread for Republican bashing and the LGF set can rail against the liberals and their agenda. Elements of both bases are satisfied.

I wouldn't be surprised if each is secretly pleased with the other.
posted by aladfar at 9:55 AM on May 18, 2006


Imagine a civics teacher trying to explain the presence of this amendment in the US Constitution to her class in 2010. "Well, a bunch of same-sex couples got married in San Francisco and Boston, and, uhm, perceiving the threat to the institution of marriage from judges and these, er, people who wanted to get married, who were the wrong genders, y'see, President Bush and the Congress..."
posted by digaman at 9:56 AM on May 18, 2006


Gays flee as religious militias sentence them all to death
posted by taosbat at 9:56 AM on May 18, 2006


If the Dems had any sense at all (and, alas, I am quite convinced they do not) they would simply ignore the atrocities this current government has committed.

Why ignore? Because everyone is well aware of how badly this Administration has fucked it up. Everyone knows the Repubs are going to be anti-gay, pro-war, tax cuts for the wealthy, etc.

Rather, the Dems should just tell us what they will do. Solve these awful problems the US is saddled with. Focus on presenting a solution, not ragging on the other guy.

Howard Dean was on TDS the other day. Asked what the Dems will do, he instead went off on a long and pointless tangent about how awful the Admin is and how badly they've cocked things up. What a waste of an opportunity!

Idiots, through and through.

I have no expectation that the Dems will win. They are a hopeless cause.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:58 AM on May 18, 2006


As a married gay man, aladfar, I'm not pleased at all to see the GOP exploiting the Constitution in such a cynical and calculated fashion. Feel free to see this as the latest partisan "he said/she said" Beltway sitcom, but if it was your right to get married on the line, you might see it differently.
posted by digaman at 9:58 AM on May 18, 2006


Er, I guess that's not exactly ignoring the atrocities. It's ignoring the history and focusing on the future.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:00 AM on May 18, 2006


Remember when the GOP used to stand for states' rights?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:00 AM on May 18, 2006


fff, the Dems are trying to get votes in the US, not run for philosopher kings. Why on earth should they do anything but talk about how bad the GOP has been? Is there any empirical reason why you think the Dems need to come up with a coherent program?

Maybe the Contract On America from 1994 would be a good example for you.

But I don't see why that's necessarily the only way to do it. The 1994 Dems weren't saddled with president with a sub-30% approval rating.
posted by ibmcginty at 10:02 AM on May 18, 2006


A very pertinent question, ZenMaster. What happened to the old "Don't tread on me" conservative spirit?
posted by digaman at 10:02 AM on May 18, 2006


jeez, these cranky old white men just can't die soon enough...

Amen.
posted by effwerd at 10:04 AM on May 18, 2006


FFF: Howard Dean isn't running for office, and he can't speak for the Democratic agenda. Until there's a presidential candidate, the Democrats' message is going to be somewhat scattered.
posted by empath at 10:06 AM on May 18, 2006


Remember when the GOP used to stand for states' rights?

Remember when the GOP used to be conservative? What happened there?
posted by illovich at 10:08 AM on May 18, 2006


the sweet irony is that it's the ones who vote for these guys on the basis of the gay marriage issue who are going to be taking it up the chute when it comes those issues that actually do affect their lives...the gay genie aint going back into the bottle, so best just to kick back and watch the hysterics from a distance...

...and i as well have no expectation that the dems will win, but primarily because at this point all illegal activity on the part of the current administration has been classified as top secret in the interest of national security...and there's no way they're going to allow a democrat to exercise the power they've grabbed...
posted by troybob at 10:10 AM on May 18, 2006


Nobody, nobody, nobody actually cares about states' rights.

They care about the state's ability to get their preferred policy results.

Similarly, one's views on constitutional interpretation tend to track very closely one's preferred policy approach, both generally and in specific cases.
posted by ibmcginty at 10:12 AM on May 18, 2006


Don't misunderstand digaman - I support gay marriage and equal protection in general. But the reality of the situation is that no real progress will be made by this amendment debate. The whole thing is designed to allow politicians to clearly stake out their positions and appeal to their electorate. Gays will not be afforded equal rights, nor will an amendment be passed.

I truly believe that it's no more than a sideshow designed to detract from more salient (in the sense that legislation might actually be passed, not in social import) issues. Domestic wiretapping? Look over there! Gay people! A lack of any Democratic cohesion? Look over there! Oppressed gay people!

The gay marriage issue is being used, quite effectively, by both sides of the political spectrum. That's what's really disheartening.
posted by aladfar at 10:13 AM on May 18, 2006


all it serves to do is identify those who are paid by the religious right to do their bidding.

As I understand it, one must occasionally make ineffectual gestures on the Senate floor if one wishes to receive further envelopes full of cash. So, assuming the measure truly is ineffectual, it looks like a win for all involved.

What would Republicans campaign against if there were no abortion or gay people? God-forbid, (actually, God has forbidden) they should defend classic conservative principles like good governance, cultural excellence, or innovative thinking.

I say this because neither party campaigns for anything, if ever they did. Just against the evils of the Other.
posted by anotherpanacea at 10:15 AM on May 18, 2006


Wikiocracy to the rescue
posted by poppo at 10:16 AM on May 18, 2006


Specter doesn't even support the amendment:
"Specter said he is 'totally opposed' to it, but felt it deserved a debate in the Senate."

My guess is that Specter feels a bit of shame about this whole thing, and took it out on Feingold.
posted by fugitivefromchaingang at 10:18 AM on May 18, 2006



What a bunch of dumb bigots. I am disgusted by Republicans.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 10:19 AM on May 18, 2006


i disagree, aladfar...the democrats are way too scared of and silent on the gay marriage issue to be seen as using it for political purposes....there are some real challenges they could raise when confronted with the 'reasoning' for preventing gay marriage, but they try to walk too fine a line to consider doing it
posted by troybob at 10:21 AM on May 18, 2006


Meanwhile in Canada... two RCMP officers get married, and "the force was happy to hear about the union, adding that they’re proud RCMP officers reflect all aspects of the community".
posted by GhostintheMachine at 10:25 AM on May 18, 2006


Nobody, nobody, nobody actually cares about states' rights.

I do.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:28 AM on May 18, 2006


Remember when the GOP used to stand for states' rights?

Exactly ZenMasterThis. And if a Dem wins the presidency in 2008, it'll be fun to watch the Republicans try to obfuscate the eight friggin years they spent bolstering the Executive's power over Congress, if not just downright bypassing that annoying "Checks and Balances" thing.

Give 'em hell Russ. Continue to give 'em hell, because you are one of the few elected representatives in this country with a backbone, a brain, and high regard for those "pieces of paper" like the Constitution.
posted by bardic at 10:28 AM on May 18, 2006


Howard Dean isn't running for office, and he can't speak for the Democratic agenda.

Isn't speaking for the Democratic agenda part of his job in the DNC?
posted by NationalKato at 10:30 AM on May 18, 2006


My guess is that Specter feels a bit of shame about this whole thing, and took it out on Feingold.

This assumption almost apologizes for Specter's behavior. A better assumption, in my opinion, is that Specter understands he's under orders and is trying to CYA with his moderate constituents by appearing to be against this horror while voting to bring it to the floor. As for his bit with Feingold, well, the reaction is similar to what happens when one of the more annoying members of your peer group threatens to stop playing and go home - a bit of "we don't need you" bluster.

The Republicans OWN Congress, and since they didn't need Feingold to get their way, well, they didn't have to play nice with him. This makes Specter appear "tough", while the limp denial of support on this noxious amendment makes him appear "human."
posted by FormlessOne at 10:31 AM on May 18, 2006


What happened to the old "Don't tread on me" conservative spirit?

We got called liberals one too many times and left the party.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:37 AM on May 18, 2006


The GOP has decided they no longer need the black vote, the latino vote or the gay vote.

You're making a huge mistake by assuming all (or even a majority of) Latinos support illegal immigration. We (Americans of Hispanic descent) are at the forefront of those bearing the brunt of the negative impact the influx of illegals is having on our neighborhoods, our jobs and our personal safety.

You don't hear from us in the streets like you do from the illegals because we aren't usually of the demonstrative sort, but there is a rage building in our communities, our churches and families. We are fed up with what we've had to endure from the illegals and those politicians that have supported them. We've lost jobs to the illegals, we've seen our neighborhoods made unlivable by the illegals and we've seen friends and family members raped and killed by illegals.

My large extended family is composed of Americans of Mexican ancestry and we are blue collar workers or small family farmers and we've traditionally voted the Democratic ticket because that's the party that has looked out for the little guy, but they've sold us down the river and we will spend our votes this coming election on whoever looks out for us.

Over the last 6 years, nearly 80 members of my family have been forced to move from the small hometown we loved because of the crimes committed by illegals and the unwillingness of the politicians in Washington to help us. My 100 year old grandmother cries daily because she misses the home my grandfather built for her with his own hands when they married in 1922. My father and his 7 siblings were all born in that house and my grandfather planted a special tree commemorating the birth of each child and grandchild. She had planned to die in that house, but had to sell it when gangs of illegals turned the neighborhood into a war zone. This is happening to Hispanic families throughout California and the vast majority of us have reached the point that we would vote for the devil himself if that's what it takes to clean up this problem.

My favorite cousin was murdered in 2003 by an illegal that had been deported at least 5 times, my wife lost a cousin to an illegal drunk driver, one family member and 2 close friends have been raped by illegals. Oir family isn't unusual in the imopact we've felt, this is par for the course in barrios across the southwest.

Do you really think we should support the illegals simply because their skin is the same color as ours after the price we've paid? You are dead wrong, we will support whoever it takes to protect our families and our way of life.
posted by buggzzee23 at 10:44 AM on May 18, 2006


Isn't the Senate supposed to be the "grown up" part of Congress?
posted by moonbiter at 10:48 AM on May 18, 2006


Way to drop a rant in the wrong place.
posted by fugitivefromchaingang at 10:51 AM on May 18, 2006


bardic: No need to worry about that. In 2008, if Dibold can't come through, the 'war on terror' will be declared over, and all those 'special' powers will disappear.
posted by DesbaratsDays at 10:54 AM on May 18, 2006


So buggzzee23, are you second, third and fourth generation latinos planning on having lots of white babies?
posted by fleetmouse at 10:55 AM on May 18, 2006


Nobody, nobody, nobody actually cares about states' rights.

I do.


Sorry, ZenMasterThis, you are right and I was exaggerating. Still, I would say that for about 97% of voters, and about 99% of elected officials, "states' rights" takes a back seat to policy preferences on any given issue.
posted by ibmcginty at 10:56 AM on May 18, 2006


You are dead wrong, we will support whoever it takes to protect our families and our way of life.

If you vote Republican because you think they will make an effort to curtail the illegal immigration problem, please keep in mind how the Republicans have treated the other constituentcies they have courted:

1) security-minded folks worried about terrorism: the Republicans lied to them and used their concerns to start an extremely profitable war which has resulted in the deaths of over 100,000 Iraqis and nearly 2500 Americans. There has been a lot of money spent, and nearly none of it on border or port security or intelligence on al Qaeda, rather the DHS has been targetting Americans for common crimes.

2) the religous right: the Republican party has pretended an anti-abortion stance for years. After 5 years of complete Republican domination, they have made only token gestures towards outlawing it. They have not made serious efforts to fight abortion because they would no longer be able to use the issue as a campaigning tool.

3) small-government types: the federal government and spending have swelled to record size in the last 5 years, dwarfing all such prior growth. Confidence in the dollar continues to sink, latest projections are expecting high inflation.

You cannot trust the current Republican party. Every promise they have made was insincere, they've done nothing cash in since gaining power.

I have no doubts they care as little about illegal immigration as they do about these other ostensibly Republican issues.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:57 AM on May 18, 2006


Way to drop a rant in the wrong place.

Actually, it's exactly the right place to drop that rant. I support gay rights and would prefer to vote for a candidate who does. Unfortunately, the party that supports those rights has put my family in jeopardy by refusing to control the border and I will vote accordingly.
posted by buggzzee23 at 10:59 AM on May 18, 2006


Why isn't there a heart-warming family drama about the married gay Mounties? I love them.

As for those shameful vote-grubbing Republicans - I hope your children all move to Canada for the healthcare and you can't ever see them again, because the border is so heavily patrolled by beautiful married young men in scarlet uniforms. They won't even need weapons, as the sheer power of their marital bliss will threaten your shaky sexuality from Port Roberts to Campobello.
posted by Biblio at 11:00 AM on May 18, 2006


Unfortunately, the party that supports those rights has put my family in jeopardy by refusing to control the border and I will vote accordingly.

And which party has controlled the white house, both houses of congress, and the judiciary for the last six years and yet has done absolutely zero? But sure, the Republicans are talking big, tough words about this problem now and this time they really, really mean it. *wink, wink* And yes, Charlie Brown, Lucy is really going to let you kick that football this time.
posted by Gamblor at 11:09 AM on May 18, 2006


You cannot trust the current Republican party. Every promise they have made was insincere, they've done nothing cash in since gaining power.

Both parties are completely corrupt and are concerned with nothing more than increasing their own power. It's a shame, but voting iin the US has become a lot like shopping for a used car. They're all bullshit artists making great promises and you know you're going to get screwed no matter who you pick, but have to pick someone.

I'm just tired of getting screwed by the Democrats and feel like maybe I'd like to get screwed by someone else for a change. At least the Repugs are promising to change the policies that have killed my family members and members of other families I've known all my life. The Dems seem more than content to sell the lives of of my fellow barrio dwellers for what they think will be a few more votes down the road.
posted by buggzzee23 at 11:16 AM on May 18, 2006


Gamblor has a point. It's posturing, nothing more, and they're counting on your "I'm outraged at the illegals" vote. In fact, that posturing is no different than the posturing established for this proposed amendment.

After all, the Republicans are now using the illegal immigrant issue to rally support, even as Bush slashed the funding for the very law he signed, the one that was to add 10,000 Border Patrol agents starting this year. Nothing says they're serious like claiming they wanted 10,000, and then funding only 210.

Think of it this way - we couldn't mobilize up to a quarter-million National Guard troops, in two-week, 6,000 troop shifts, to help with Katrina, but we can do so in order to provide non-law enforcement support on a small area of the border?

Last year, the National Guard was considered "stretched" because 21,000 of them were reassigned to help with the Katrina clean-up.

Why is it that we still have tens of thousands of NOLA citizens, still begging for assistance and manpower nearly a year after the disaster, yet we can easily allocate these troops to fill out paperwork and man binoculars?

It's posturing, plain and simple. The Bush administration needs to be seen as doing something, and they're discovering that they spent six years letting their mouths write checks their asses can't cash, to use the vernacular.

And Specter's mealy-mouthed posturing is no different. He'll push this to the floor, to let it die, and then use it to explain to his fundie funders that it's those godless Democrat bastards rooting for the end of their way of life, even while he gets his palm crossed with a little lucre.
posted by FormlessOne at 11:28 AM on May 18, 2006


Both parties are completely corrupt and are concerned with nothing more than increasing their own power. It's a shame, but voting iin the US has become a lot like shopping for a used car. They're all bullshit artists making great promises and you know you're going to get screwed no matter who you pick, but have to pick someone.

On this, you and I are in complete agreement, buggzzee23. I'm tired of posturing, and the Republicans aren't the only ones doing so. I'd like to see some real progress.

I'm just tired of getting screwed by the Democrats and feel like maybe I'd like to get screwed by someone else for a change.

On this, I have to shake my head. For the past six years, you've been screwed by a Republican government. In fact, by the most Republican government in recent history. (I'm not sure if "Republican" is a good term, here, because even some moderate Republicans are realizing that there's a bizarre faction in their own party running the show.) I'm not sure what continuing to keep them in office is going to buy you. Of course, I'm not sure what voting Democrat just to vote Democrat would buy me, either, for the same reason.

That's why I'll just do my best to vote for the most competent person, and hope party affiliations become a secondary consideration.
posted by FormlessOne at 11:33 AM on May 18, 2006


posted by buggzzee23 I'm just tired of getting screwed by the Democrats and feel like maybe I'd like to get screwed by someone else for a change.

Uh, hello? The Republicans have been the ones screwing you for the last six years.

At least the Repugs are promising to change the policies that have killed my family members and members of other families I've known all my life.

Policies didn't kill your family members. People killed your family members.

The Dems seem more than content to sell the lives of of my fellow barrio dwellers for what they think will be a few more votes down the road.

As opposed to Republicans, right? Good grief, take your partisan crap elsewhere, hombre.
posted by fandango_matt at 11:40 AM on May 18, 2006


At least the Repugs are promising to change the policies

What can I say?

If you buy what they tell you, after all we've seen the last 5 years, you are a sucker. You want to be lied to, to have sweet nothings whispered at you.

The Bush administration are criminals. You know this.

Vote for them if you want, if you have no self-respect.
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:46 AM on May 18, 2006


On this, I have to shake my head. For the past six years, you've been screwed by a Republican government. In fact, by the most Republican government in recent history. (I'm not sure if "Republican" is a good term, here, because even some moderate Republicans are realizing that there's a bizarre faction in their own party running the show.) I'm not sure what continuing to keep them in office is going to buy you. Of course, I'm not sure what voting Democrat just to vote Democrat would buy me, either, for the same reason.

That's why I'll just do my best to vote for the most competent person, and hope party affiliations become a secondary consideration.


We've been begging our senators (Feinstein and Boxer) and our congressman (Baca) for action with no results. Even minority members can introduce a bill. Feinstein and Boxer finally seem to be coming around and will likely get my vote next time around, but I'll be voting against Baca. I'm sad to say I'll be voting almost a straight Republican ticket in our California state elections, though. The california Democrat party has sold out to the MEChistas.
posted by buggzzee23 at 11:57 AM on May 18, 2006


Another mistake being made is thinking (in addition to Hispanics supporting illegal immigration) that blacks generally support gay rights - they overwhelmingly do not.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 11:57 AM on May 18, 2006


posted by buggzzee23 I'm sad to say I'll be voting almost a straight Republican ticket in our California state elections, though. The california Democrat party has sold out to the MEChistas.

Then you deserve whatever you get, you bigoted asshole. Oh, and fuck you and your partisan O'Reilly Rushspeak.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:02 PM on May 18, 2006


fff, the Dems are trying to get votes in the US, not run for philosopher kings. Why on earth should they do anything but talk about how bad the GOP has been? Is there any empirical reason why you think the Dems need to come up with a coherent program?

Because everyone already knows how bad the GOP has been. There is nothing new about it.

Because I wager most of the voting population is sick of hearing negative campaigning.

Because for every slag the Dems make, the Reps can make one back.

Because it's time to try a different strategy. It is stupid to do the same thing time and again, yet expect different results.

Because I still hold faint hope that the majority of Americans are sensible, kind people who, given the opportunity to show it, will show it.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:06 PM on May 18, 2006


Mechistas????? Jesus H. Crassmas.
posted by slatternus at 12:08 PM on May 18, 2006


The california Democrat party has sold out to the MEChistas.
posted by buggzzee23


Labels are for people who don't have their OWN stances on the issues.
posted by CrazyJub
posted by NationalKato at 12:13 PM on May 18, 2006


Then you deserve whatever you get, you bigoted asshole.

Whatever I get, it couldn't be worse than the open warfare and lawlessness that cost the lives of 2 of my loved ones and uprooted my family from the homes and community tthey continue to love and miss.

Here's a suggestion: Move to the barrio or rural backwater farming towns and get back to me in 6 months after seeing firsthand how illegals have destroyed our way of life.
posted by buggzzee23 at 12:14 PM on May 18, 2006


[...] there is a rage building in our communities, our churches and families. We are fed up with what we've had to endure from the illegals and those politicians that have supported them. We've lost jobs to the illegals, we've seen our neighborhoods made unlivable by the illegals and we've seen friends and family members raped and killed by illegals.

Well, I seriously doubt you speak for all Latino communities everywhere. Mine for instance, where most of the shooting and stabbing and killing is perpetrated by Hispanic Americans, not illegals. The illegals are the quiet ones. They're the ones that run little grocery store nearby. One sells yummy enchiladas door to door. Then there are the courteous landscapers. All illegal.

The little 12-14 years olds that have broken into my apartment three times in six years? Not illegal. The same aged kids with the guns sticking out the backs of their shorts? Not illegal. The latinos hanging out in the parking lot drinking at 8 in the morning? Not illegal.

I dunno. Maybe Utah gets all the good illegals.
posted by effwerd at 12:19 PM on May 18, 2006


I'd bet my life that buggzzee23 is a lifelong repub.
posted by notreally at 12:24 PM on May 18, 2006


Well, I seriously doubt you speak for all Latino communities everywhere.

I never meant to convey that message.

I dunno. Maybe Utah gets all the good illegals.

Nope, we've got lots of great illegals here in SoCal, too. The vast majority of illegals are good people simply trying for a better life, but there is an increasing criminal element that has to be brought under control and that just ain't happening here. The illegal gangs have taken over the neighborhoods around here and when they get deported, they seem to make it back to town almost overnight.

My grandmother's old neighborhood in Bloomington has become so bad that even the illegals are afraid to live there.
posted by buggzzee23 at 12:36 PM on May 18, 2006


If "illegals" are destroying your bigoted and racist way of life, more power to them--those "illegals" are exactly the kind of Americans we need.

Say, buggzzee, could you please post links, scans of, or reference information for these two relatives of yours you claim were killed by "illegals"? I'd like to read up on that.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:42 PM on May 18, 2006


so, umm, to bring your rants somewhat to the topic at hand here (gay marriage, if you recall): you'll vote for someone who is willing to write into the Constitution the denial of rights to a particular group--and it's okay to just overlook that--as long as it's not your particular group--and as long as they stroke your particular paranoia, though they just started stroking it like five minutes ago and there is no practical indication they will continue to do so beyond election politics...
posted by troybob at 12:44 PM on May 18, 2006


Ruh-roh.
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:45 PM on May 18, 2006


The california Democrat party has sold out to the MEChistas.

Save us from the Mexicanofascists!
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:06 PM on May 18, 2006


The vast majority of illegals are good people simply trying for a better life, but there is an increasing criminal element that has to be brought under control and that just ain't happening here.

Yeah, sounds like a local issue. Maybe instead of painting this as some national problem which can only be solved by a national agenda, you might want to consider focusing on your local city counsel or whatever political structure you use there.

Well, I seriously doubt you speak for all Latino communities everywhere.

I never meant to convey that message.


Well...

You're making a huge mistake by assuming all (or even a majority of) Latinos support illegal immigration. We (Americans of Hispanic descent) are at the forefront of those bearing the brunt of the negative impact the influx of illegals is having on our neighborhoods, our jobs and our personal safety.

You seemed to be using some pretty broad strokes there. I just wanted to point out that by first bringing up your opinion that all (or even a majority of) Latinos don't support illegals, then continuing with a vague "We" really only represents you.

Sorry to all for adding to this bizarre derail.
posted by effwerd at 1:50 PM on May 18, 2006


C'mon buggzzee23, you've forgotten the prime directive RNC talking points masquerading as "common man" wisdom. After six years of disasters under a Republican White House, Republican House, Republican Senate, a majority of Republican governorships and state houses, and a mostly Republican Supreme Court, you're supposed to blame Bill Clinton. Duh.
posted by bardic at 1:50 PM on May 18, 2006


If "illegals" are destroying your bigoted and racist way of life, more power to them--those "illegals" are exactly the kind of Americans we need.

If "illegals" are doing anything to anyone's bigoted and racist way of life, they're helping to support it, not to destroy it. Cheap labor, no voting rights, no protection from unfair employers, yeah, they're just tearing down the walls of injustice aren't they.

I don't see why you're calling buggzzee23 out as "bigoted" or "racist" - that doesn't even make any sense. You expect him to identify with his race over everything else - the same "identity politics" crap you decry from O'Reilly and the rest of the loony right.
posted by me & my monkey at 2:30 PM on May 18, 2006


GOD BLESS TEH GAYS! If wasn't for Gay's demanding equal rights the rest of us would likely not be examining the erosion of our liberties. Because that erosion is largely hidden from us by our fat-ass lifestyles (iPod=Free!).

The supposed Small Gubmint Senate Republicans have been exposed for the unprincipled swine they are — "get Gubmint out of your life" my ass. "Paging Terry Shivo. Ms. Shivo will you please pick up the Senate Hypocrite Phone."

The second they got control of Gubmint it magically became "Government" again. Enshrined. Sanctified. Pure. And a yummy cash cow for the select few.

Watching them deconstructed 40 years of their own "Intrusive Government" arguments has been as entertaining as it has been terrifying.
posted by tkchrist at 2:32 PM on May 18, 2006


It's ridiculous that people would pass a constitutional amendment preventing californians and massachupers from gay marrying in order to shore up some votes in alamabama.
posted by delmoi at 2:43 PM on May 18, 2006



If "illegals" are doing anything to anyone's bigoted and racist way of life, they're helping to support it, not to destroy it. Cheap labor, no voting rights, no protection from unfair employers, yeah, they're just tearing down the walls of injustice aren't they.


If it wasn't for immigration - illegal or other wise - there would be NOBODY to support social security in forty years. American are not having babies. Except the fundamentalist dipshits in places like Utah.

As the white population ages, get's wealthier, and begins the inevitable and predictable demographic shrink it becomes more xenophobic. This is a historical pattern. We see more and more people who don't look like us or speak our language - their children dominating schools - and we get worried. It's a natural tribal type of reaction and not necessarily evil in and of itself. Certainly we have to deal with the cultural impact of splitting the population with non-english speakers. That can be bad as we have seen in "balkanized" foreign countries.

But we better wake up to this fact: The Mexican are going to STOP coming here. Not because we don't want them. But because they wont HAVE to. Their own demographics at home are changing. Mexico's own birth rate is crashing. Mexican women were havning an average of 6 kids twenty years ago. Now it's like 2.5. People wont NEED to export themselves for labor in twenty years. There will be labor shortages at home. They will be NEEDED in Mexico.

And what happens to GOP faithful Betty & Bob Sixpack's Social Security check then? Yeah. They don't fucking get one.

So my good Republican friends. You better embrace the Mexican next door and their children they are paying for your healthcare in twenty years.

AND for that matter the gays who are reproducing, too. Every warm body will count.
posted by tkchrist at 2:44 PM on May 18, 2006


I'd bet my life that buggzzee23 is a lifelong repub.

He is. Democrats don't call it the "Democrat Party."
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 2:50 PM on May 18, 2006


If it wasn't for immigration - illegal or other wise - there would be NOBODY to support social security in forty years.

Does anyone still think Social Security will be around for them in forty years?

As the white population ages, get's wealthier, and begins the inevitable and predictable demographic shrink it becomes more xenophobic. This is a historical pattern. We see more and more people who don't look like us or speak our language - their children dominating schools - and we get worried. It's a natural tribal type of reaction and not necessarily evil in and of itself.

I think there's also a concern with whether illegal immigrants will be assimilated into American society. I don't think this concern exists only in the right-wing loony element, either. I think that's a big deal, and it has nothing to do with any xenophobia that I might have.

You better embrace the Mexican next door

The last time I did that, my spouse got really pissed. But he was so cute!
posted by me & my monkey at 2:54 PM on May 18, 2006


still waiting for bugzzee23's evidence that two of his family were killed by illegal aliens. maybe they were, dont know, but throwing out the "my family is DEAD! cause of these 'illegals'" (at least more so than the grammy had to move cause of those bastards line) as the ultimate trump sort of collapses when one is called on it. so showing some evidence might help his seriously damaged credibility as a commentor on this derail issue.
posted by Gaius Gracchus at 3:05 PM on May 18, 2006


If it wasn't for immigration - illegal or other wise - there would be NOBODY to support social security in forty years.

Um, this isn't an argument for illegal immigration. This is an argument for updating and increasing the *legal* quotas. Legal citizens are far more likely to pay the SS & Medicare taxes out of their paychecks than illegals (who are often paid in cash, and no taxes of any sort are taken out).

Looking at the hate directed at bugzzee23 makes me sad. Looks like some people just don't like what he has to say - it's too challenging to their worldview, the possibility that illegals are actually making life worse for the legal immigrants and their descendants.

And seriously, you're not going to believe him about the murders in his family unless he can provide press clippings? This is ludicrous.

How many of the people who champion illegal immigration here get their lawns mowed and houses cleaned by them? That's what I'm curious about. If you benefit directly from the cheap cost of illegal labor, yeah, I can see why you'd proclaim how great it is.
posted by beth at 3:21 PM on May 18, 2006


still waiting for bugzzee23's evidence that two of his family were killed by illegal aliens.

Why? Would you accept his position if only you knew for sure that they'd died? Would you then immediately vote Republican? What kind of ghoulish crap is this, anyway? I think you've seriously damaged your credibility as an empathetic human being.
posted by me & my monkey at 3:24 PM on May 18, 2006


Actually even if he showed proof, they'd then not believe that the victims were really his relatives. They'd want to see scans of documents like marriage certificates and birth certificates to back it up. And then they'd accuse him of forging these.

It's very easy not to listen when it's something you don't want to hear.
posted by beth at 3:45 PM on May 18, 2006


Isn't the Senate supposed to be the "grown up" part of Congress?
posted by moonbiter at 10:48 AM PST on May 18


Yes. The adult language of Fuck Off used by the VP to Mr. Lehey lets you know that the Senate is where the adults are.
posted by rough ashlar at 4:08 PM on May 18, 2006


Um, this isn't an argument for illegal immigration.

Um, why I prefaced with If it wasn't for immigration - illegal or other wise.

The fact is it is the ILLEGAL immigrants who are reproducing and having the kids who will be contributing the future tax base. While legal immigrants are contributing and having children they are not, in near the numbers in terms of rate of growth, that that of illegal immigrants are. Specifically Mexican. Due, obviously to the proximity of the source country and the current culture of that country being catholic and of traditional "large family" agrarian background).

So it isn't an endorsement of illegality per se it is ... well... our current reality. The nature of our economic beast if you will. We must grow to sustain our economy in it's current form. And you do that with mounds and mounds of labor hours - AKA - people.

That communities are "devastated" by illegal immigration is a red herring of the stankiest kind. It isn't illegal immigration killing these communities, Beth. It's globalism.

That Americans want $5 jeans from Walmart AND have a protected lifestyle where their labor is more special - worth more - than a Mexican's (or Indonesian's) who does the same thing is self contradictory and not sustainable.

Add that to what I said about Americans not having kids, not wanting taxes raised and STILL wanting healthcare, Medicare, and Social Security... well you see my point don't you?

We are well past the practical point of handling this situation with traditional immigration law and stigmatizing people as Law Breakers. That way is useless.
posted by tkchrist at 5:00 PM on May 18, 2006


That Americans want $5 jeans from Walmart AND have a protected lifestyle where their labor is more special - worth more - than a Mexican's (or Indonesian's) who does the same thing is self contradictory and not sustainable.

What seems "not sustainable" to me is the idea that the blue-collar American workforce is going to be able to keep buying stuff without decent paying jobs. Not everyone has access to the education that is required to get the better-paying jobs. Not everyone wants that education or that type of job, anyway.

Do we just let these people twist in the wind? Apparently that's the American way. I don't see anyone offering a solution to this. If all the low-paying jobs are done by illegals and cheap labor overseas, and vast swaths of our population can't get the higher-paying jobs... well... that will leave millions with no job, no money, and no future. That doesn't bode well for social stability, not to mention an economy that relies on rampant consumption. Problems without a solution have a way of creating much bigger problems.
posted by beth at 5:14 PM on May 18, 2006


How many of the people who champion illegal immigration here get their lawns mowed and houses cleaned by them? That's what I'm curious about. If you benefit directly from the cheap cost of illegal labor, yeah, I can see why you'd proclaim how great it is.

This is.. so... I... oh... give me a minute...

Man. beth. I don't want to insult you. Truly I don't. But that is the most stupid inverted argument on subject I have ever heard. I conclude - because I've read other posts of yours much much more intelligent - that you must have mis-typed it.

If you live here YOU benefit from illegal labor, beth.

Making this some sort of "it the elites and their lifestyle of opulence that benefit" argument is retarded. If anything it's the opposite. You want affordable burgers? Hell. Affordable housing (construction labor)? Affordable produce?

We don't just want them. At this point - with wages stagnant - we NEED them. And yes. I am aware of the irony and contradiction. But that is global CAPITALISM, not illegal immigration, at the root of the problem.

Certainly it has to be addressed. Especially the cultural impact. But this guy screaming the sky is falling because of Illegals is selling a distracting agenda. There are bigger fish to fry.

It reminds me of the loggers in the Pacific NW decrying environmentalists in the 80's for their loss of jobs. When it was the Timber Industry responding to early globalism by selling RAW LOGS to overseas markets. THUS putting US mills (who employed the majority of people in the lumber biz) out of business (raw timber is milled over seas more cheaply) and flooding the woods with tree cutters who USED to mill. They got sold out.

Sam thing here. It is your corporate and government masters that sold you out. NOT Mexico. Wake up people.
posted by tkchrist at 5:15 PM on May 18, 2006


What seems "not sustainable" to me is the idea that the blue-collar American workforce is going to be able to keep buying stuff without decent paying jobs. Not everyone has access to the education that is required to get the better-paying jobs. Not everyone wants that education or that type of job, anyway.

Then they should not be buying stuff. Simple. There is your solution. Or a part of it. Stop over consumption. Stop debt. Over all I agree with what your trying to say. But it's not illegals immigration causing this mess. You can put up all the protection barriers you want. One way or another - with other countries with lower living standards and lots of people - labor will be exported.

At least illegals COME HERE. Spend their money here. Pay taxes here.

We need to reform our economic and living model. Undoubtedly. but. This idea that our lifestyle is a birthright is a myth. This idea that a blue collar person can own three cars and a 2000 sq ft home is a myth. These myths MUST be shattered.

We have to reform that assumption first. Our birth right should be safe neighborhoods. Clean air and water. Free public education. Safe plentiful food to eat. A responsive compassionate government. Let start there. That takes a tax base. A tax base takes people.
posted by tkchrist at 5:27 PM on May 18, 2006


There is this common theme that illegals are not being assimilated into American society, that the white ruling class is going to shrink, that the status quo must be maintained.

What is with this sort of thinking? Do the people that worry about these things think society is static? That change can be stopped? That change should be stopped?

I don't understand it. So long as the laws move toward greater freedoms and greater equality — unlikely in the USA, I know — what earthly difference would societal change make?

You're still going to be able to buy your WonderBread, watch Sopranos, own a home, go to work.

What important aspect of your lives is going to change as the demographics shift? Honestly, I can't think of any.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:51 PM on May 18, 2006


posted by five fresh fish What important aspect of your lives is going to change as the demographics shift?

Well, we aren't stopped for "Driving While White." It would suck if we lost that.
posted by fandango_matt at 6:05 PM on May 18, 2006


You want affordable burgers? Hell.

Fast food places pay at least minimum wage. And I buy my beef from the farmer's market now.

Affordable housing (construction labor)?

Don't get me started on the quality of the drywall finishing I've seen in recent brand-new expensive homes. Housing was affordable before, when we had a much larger proportion of legals doing the work. You think the savings due to the cheaper labor is passed on to the consumer? Don't be ridiculous, it's pocketed by the builder and/or the contractor.

Affordable produce?

I shop at the farmer's market now, and the prices I pay support a decent wage for those who grow and harvest the food. And I'm willing to pay much higher prices for food overall, because I believe people who produce food deserve a living wage (as all people do).

Yeah, I'm a freak. I don't think I deserve a cheap lifestyle on the back of people working in near-slavery conditions.

Then they should not be buying stuff. Simple.

Part of what I was getting at was that if the blue-collar workforce in this country is completely impoverished, their reduced consumption is going to cause some very bad ripples through the economy. This is not a tiny sliver of the population we're talking about, here. Yes, I agree *over*-consumption is ridiculous. But without a job, they won't be able to support even minimal consumption, and that will have a bad effect on others as well.

At least illegals COME HERE. Spend their money here. Pay taxes here.

The ones paid in cash do not pay taxes of any sort. And my understanding is that a great, great many are paid in cash. Do you have figures for how many pay taxes? I'm guessing it's just the ones who bother / are required to come up with false papers and false social security numbers that get anything withheld at all. I honestly don't know what proportion of illegal workers this consists of. And as for "spend their money here", you are aware that vast quantities of the money they make goes straight to Mexico (or to other countries they may hail from)?

Our birth right should be safe neighborhoods.

This was exactly what buggzzee23 was talking about having a serious lack of, due to illegal immigration. We aren't bothering to keep out the illegals who just want to work, but we also aren't bothering to keep out the illegals who commit violent crime, either. A porous border is dangerous, and not just in the economic sense.
posted by beth at 6:22 PM on May 18, 2006


There goes Beth again with the poorly-hung drywall.
posted by fandango_matt at 6:40 PM on May 18, 2006


Looking at the hate directed at bugzzee23 makes me sad. Looks like some people just don't like what he has to say - it's too challenging to their worldview, the possibility that illegals are actually making life worse for the legal immigrants and their descendants.

Hear, hear.
posted by homunculus at 7:42 PM on May 18, 2006


Hey, drywall is important.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:59 PM on May 18, 2006


If they are paid in cash, do the business owners pay any taxes. Also, do they not pay sales taxes? And who cares if they send their money "home"? (Do you have any investments that are in foreign countries?) It's the price of having an unskilled (for the most part) labor force, isn't it?

/chronic derail
posted by jaronson at 8:13 PM on May 18, 2006


If this thread was derailed any harder, Amtrak would be involved in it.

Seriously, the issue is that partisan posturing now involves attempting to screw with the Constitution to appease their religious masters. I'm hoping this backfires, in that it turns out to be the albatross hung around the necks of folks like Specter come mid-term elections.

But, hey, maybe there are enough bigots out there to justify this blatant grab at the homophobe vote. Who knows?
posted by FormlessOne at 8:14 PM on May 18, 2006


but there is an increasing criminal element that has to be brought under control and that just ain't happening here.

I do believe that the criminal element that needs to be brought under control is currently sitting in the House, the Senate and in the Oval Office.


Are there any statistics on how many politicians employ illegal immigrants as nannies, housekeepers or gardeners?
posted by hollygoheavy at 8:19 PM on May 18, 2006


If this thread was derailed any harder, Amtrak would be involved in it.

Seriously, the issue is that partisan posturing now involves attempting to screw with the Constitution to appease their religious masters.


Yes, but it's soooooo much safer to jump all over immigration...while making assumptions that any Hispanic poster couldn't possibly have come from a family that's been on this land since before the land became part of this country.

Pretty much disgusting.
posted by taosbat at 8:37 PM on May 18, 2006


The ones paid in cash do not pay taxes of any sort.

They must do all their food and clothes shopping at duty-free shops.
posted by ryokoblue at 12:14 AM on May 19, 2006


The ones paid in cash do not pay taxes of any sort. And my understanding is that a great, great many are paid in cash. Do you have figures for how many pay taxes?

I'm sure I could did up those numbers. But I'm tired. Trust me when I say it is more than you think. A great deal more.

But what the current crop of illegals pay in income taxes is irrelevant. They pay sales taxes. And their children stay here and pay income taxes. THAT is what is important.

Perhaps you didn't understand my comments on population growth and the shrinking tax base. if we rely on purely legal immigration (unless it is vastly reformed) we will not have the population to support the very expensive and very old people we are going to be burdened with in a few years.

AS for crime. Well buggzzee's family tragedy is irrelevant. I mean he may as well said "I'm against horse racing. Because my family was eaten by horses." It's not germane to the topic. neither is calling the guy racist. A term growing in meaninglessness every day.

Why do I say this? Because EVERY immigration population with cultural differences brings crime. Every single one. Ever hear of the Gangs of New York in the 17 and 1800's? The Mafia? The Jewish mob? The Russian mob? The frigg'n Irish mob? Jesus. I think you would find that Mexican illegal crime rates - where income is in parody - are likely LOWER than those here legally.

But it doesn't matter. WE are made from criminals. Every country in the world sent their misfits here for centuries. It is who we are.

America is pirates, thieves, religious kooks, and outcasts and has been from it's inception. Deal with it.

You want to be secure or free? You can not be both. And you realize that as illegal immigration has trended UP - violent crime is trending DOWN. It is lower NOW than in any time since we have been keeping track.

As for your dry wall problems? You can't afford good dry wallers. Do it yourself. This is such hypocrisy.

The fact is immigrants SAVE. They don't over consume. Americans won't do low skill jobs any more because they want stuff. Low skill jobs cannot support consumer culture like we have now.

Look. It's not 1954 anymore. A guy that spot welds ashtrays cannot buy a house, a boat, a motorcycle and five TVs. He never did that in 1954. He SAVED. Now the same guy spends.

Mexicans don't spend like we do. They save. Do you understand what I am saying here? The time of low skill blue collar jobs providing for everything a 2006 American desires NEVER EXISTED.

Americans go into debt to ge shit. And they don't have the kids to generate the labor hour and then SAVE that wealth to pay off these debts.

Please understand this.

Illegals are saving this country. That our immigration system has not caught up with global economic realities is NOT the fault of Mexicans who come here to work. And they work hard.
posted by tkchrist at 10:50 AM on May 19, 2006


I am only posting this because my posting history is now at #1313 and I am, contrary to my pissy sarcastic semi-atheist persona, deeply superstitious. You may ignore.
posted by tkchrist at 2:46 PM on May 19, 2006


As for your dry wall problems? You can't afford good dry wallers. Do it yourself. This is such hypocrisy.

Don't do it yourself. Drywallers — even bad ones — are worth every penny you pay them. I suggest paying them well, so you don't end up with Bethesquian horrorshow walls. Just don't do it yourself. It's awful stuff. Awful stuff.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:42 PM on May 19, 2006


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