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Thursday, July 13, 2006

Katherine Kersten's Korner

Today's kolumn is about one of her favorite topics, teh gay. She loves talking about how teh gay marriage is going to ruin the world, and this kolumn is no different, focusing on the recent New York court decision.

Wingnuttia Level: 6 (I'm too tired for this)

Typically, she starts out with the same old smear about how a small number of Senate DFLers kept the state from enshrining bigotry in the state's constitution. Boo hoo. I'm playing the world's tinyiest violin for her. Those Democrats that want mandatory gay marriage, I'm telling ya...

Anyway, she then moves on to the recent New York Court of Appeals decision that chose not to require the state to offer gay marriage. She sees this as proof that gay marriage isn't an issue of equal rights, and instead marriage "can be up to the people, not the courts."

No, this means that the court wasn't sufficiently swayed by the arguments put in favor of legalizing gay marriage at this particular time, that's all. That could change in the future if other courts see things differently, or if other arguments are made that are more successful. This means very little in the grand scheme of things. I certainly didn't pay much attention to the decision. I hardly noticed a "shock wave" as she put it.

I was not impressed by the court's rationalization about the differences between heterosexual and homosexual marriages, such as that the latter don't lead to kids. The former don't have to either; what's the big deal? Children doing better with both a mother and father is similarly flawed: what if a parent is a deadbeat, an abuser? Does this mean that the state has a compelling interest to all but eliminate divorce except in the most heinous of circumstances? Saying that marriage is between a man and a woman and has been forever may be factually true, but also isn't all that compelling. In the same manner, marriage was only permitted between people of the same religion or same racial group for the longest time; things changed.

I don't necessarily agree with the New York decision, but I have hardly spent any time thinking about it. I doubt it will be a "watershed" decision. It is simply another stop along the way of the continually adapting legal framework that exists in this country (oh no, activist judges!). If Kersten thinks that this means that she and other conservatives like her will continue to be successful treating teh gay as second-class citizens, think again.

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