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« Dignitatis Humanae | Main | "I will vote against this amendment" »

Apr 25, 2012

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Spag

It's terrible. Amendment One will make same-sex marriage illegal and the sky will fall. Wait, same-sex marriage is already illegal so the lesson on "peeing standing up" should have been learned a long time ago.

Doesn't matter though. Sending money to support ads that make definitive statements that are highly questionable- no problem. Passing on illogical nonsense such as this- no problem. The ends justify the means.

To the extent I might be inclined to vote against Amendment One, the absolute lies and other nonsense that are being advanced certainly add to my reservations. Nobody wants to discuss the actual issue at hand, instead they want to chase rabbits and deploy scare tactics. We're debating everything but the intended purpose of Amendment One. I assume that's because the poll numbers show it is likely to pass, so all stops are being pulled out to prevent that.

You may even have a better argument on the merits, but since opponents don't want to have that debate, oh well. Might as well go with the status quo.

Ed Cone

Satire 1, Sam 0

"To the extent I might be inclined to vote against Amendment One, the absolute lies and other nonsense that are being advanced certainly add to my reservations."

If you think that stuff is more important than the issue itself, then I guess you'll vote for the amendment.

Sean

sam would legally argue against the notion that "every sperm is sacred."

Billy Jones

Sam wrote: "We're debating everything but the intended purpose of Amendment One."

And that would be?

sittinginthemiddle

"If you think that stuff is more important than the issue itself, then I guess you'll vote for the amendment."


Wow, you Lefties are really quick! Except when it comes to what the majority of NC residents really want. Another hundred or so posts about the amendment before May 8th should help all 12 of your readers to make up their minds. As if what you want has any influence, laughable.

Spag

"If you think that stuff is more important than the issue itself, then I guess you'll vote for the amendment."

That's exactly what you are doing on the opposite side, aren't you Ed ? Advancing "stuff" as if it is more important than the issue itself and encouraging others to focus on the "stuff" instead of the real issue ?

I for one don't like to encourage dishonesty, hence my concern over my vote coming across as a signal to the propagandists that their tactics have worked.

We all know that if the Amendment fails, all the talk about domestic violence, etc., will go out the window and instead opponents will declare that it is proof that the public really wants same-sex marriage- even though many may have simply been influenced by the scare tactics and voted "no" despite opposing same-sex marriage.

Ed Cone

What I've focused on most from the start is the civil unions angle, which strikes me as the most compelling argument to be made against the amendment when talking with people who might be inclined to rule out gay marriage itself.

I've also been pretty persistent in broadcasting my own moral view, which has been nicely set to music by Laurelyn and so many others.

These arguments seem to speak to you to some degree, Sam. I hope they lead you vote against the amendment.

cheripickr

Those who are aggressively campaigning against the amendment would do well to realize that there are a lot of fence-sitters on this issue who may turn on any number of considerations. And when you trot out "this stuff" to augment your campaign, while you might scare a few votes your way, you are equally at risk for turning off people who see the far-out propagandist scare scenarios in it. On the other hand, if you just want to argue on the main crux of the issue and let the chips fall where they may, while scolding those who focus on the "stuff" as deflecting from the real issue, why do you keep trotting out the "stuff" in the first place? Or were the shrill scenarios from yesterday's videos just satire too?

Spag

CP, I'm just about done here on this topic. Between the hotheads, knee-jerks, and moving targets it is obvious that this subject is dominated by emotions and is not going to be addressed in a reasonable or intelligent manner. This is the problem with trying to engage in a conversation with ideological extremists. For all the flack the Joe Guarino gets for his level of ideological inflexibility, you would think that some people might look in the mirror. At least Joe is polite.

Ed Cone

Sam, I hope I've been polite to you on this topic.

CP, The folks pushing the amendment make all kinds of arguments, too, some of which may be dismaying to their allies and potential allies.

It seems fair to hold both campaigns to the same standards.

In a general sense, this probably cancels out. (Note that this is not the same thing as justifying one side or the other's tactics by saying "he hit me first" -- the point is about how we judge the similar situations.)

And that leads straight back to this: If you believe the amendment is wrong, you should vote against it.

If you are more interested in how some sub-group of proponents or opponents does its business than in the issue itself, then you may not be that interested in the issue itself.

On this particular topic, I'm not convinced that the family-law arguments are clearly wrong, and so I'm not really worked up about the ads suggesting possible consequences along those lines (I object much more to the all-proponents-are-hateful meme, and I'd say so if I pointed to an ad making that case).

But anyone who is so convinced and thus so dismayed might consider both their own core feelings on the actual issue, as well as their reactions to all arguments on both sides that are perceived as objectionable.

sean coon

Polling has shown a drop from 61% to 54% in favor of the amendment over the past few months. Thanks for the words of wisdom, cheripickr, but I don't think any tactics have proven to be outright offensive to fence sitters or the ignorant of the amendment's details.

cheripickr

Which details are you referring to, Sean?

prell

Peeing while standing up is WAY overrated unless you're tailgating, camping, or hiking. I often find myself sitting down to pee, esp. in the early hours of the morning. It's just a lot more chill and relaxing.

Andrew Brod

Thanks for sharing.

Ed Cone

I think the key details are pretty much everything after defining marriage as between a man and a woman -- if the amendment ended there, it would pass by a wide margin.

One major detail is the part about civil unions being off the table. Polls have shown consistently that lots of folks are at least open to the possibility of civil unions.

After that, you get to the unclear possible outcomes, and just the fact that the possible outcomes are not entirely clear.

Billy Jones

Spag wrote: "We're debating everything but the intended purpose of Amendment One."

And that would be?

cheripickr


Which amendment details are you referring to Sean? I thought the amendment was comprised of a single sentence, section 6, without subsections. The only "detail" I can construe is the qualifier that follows:

"This section does not prohibit a private party from entering into contracts with another private party; nor does this section prohibit courts from adjudicating the rights of private parties pursuant to such contracts."

Can you help enlighten the ignorant among us?


Ed Cone

I think the key details are pretty much everything after defining marriage as between a man and a woman -- if the amendment ended there, it would pass by a wide margin.

As I just posted, even astute reporters like Binker sometimes describe the amendment in that way.

One major detail is the part about civil unions being off the table. Polls have shown consistently that lots of folks are at least open to the possibility of civil unions.

After that, you get to the unclear possible outcomes, and just the fact that the possible outcomes are not entirely clear.

Sean

cheri, i voted today. the language you quoted wasn't on the ballot. i was referring to the primary sentence defining all domestic partnerships between men and women:

"Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State."

specifically, the phrase, "the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized" is the detail i referred to. in retrospect, "detail" was probably a poor choice of words to describe that part of the sentence, but i was commenting on my cell phone while walking, so forgive me.

btw, "ignorant" isn't a negative jab at some huddled, unwashed, red-neck mass; i was using the term as a signifier to describe folk who might not have actually read the proposed section to the amendment. whether you believe that to be relevant in the campaign is inconsequential to my point about tactics and the upsurge in opposition to the proposed amendment.

cheripickr

Thanks for the clarification Sean. Interesting that they left the closest thing to a detail (approximately the second half the language of the amendment) off the ballot description. Should help your side.

Sean

not too sure about that, cheri.

the language in the booth made even me twitch towards voting "yes," as i believe in the institution of marriage (i actually picked up my marriage license prior to voting), i just happen to believe that we all should have that right, regardless of sexual preference. so when i read the actual language in the booth, it read much more like a positive reinforcement of the institution (we think marriage between a man and a woman is right, don't you!?), rather than an attempt to exclude my neighbor's from obtaining their own civil rights (whether they be same-sex or straight in other domestic partnership situations). i'm guessing a good number of people heading into the booth will *react* to the language in the way the legislators wanted.

this is why i think it's important and fair game to talk about *all* the issues surrounding this amendment as we head towards may 8th.

by the way, you wanted those twelve law professors to provide detailed analysis for the public to consume. here it is.

cheripickr

Thanks for the link Sean. I guess my question is, if this amendment simply reinforces what is already in place, it would appear to me that all of these "there is a small chance that..." theoreticals being conjured up have already had the chance to play out in NC, yet to my knowledge that hasn't happened. We don't recognize gay marriage or civil unions now. Is it really reasonable to think that a single sentence recognizing that fact, is going to make the sky fall in all these different ways? It just makes all these what if arguments smack more of advocacy than analysis to me. Hopefully Sam can weigh in on their position from a legal perspective since I can only speak from my own faulty noggin.

Ed Cone

The amendment doesn't just recognize existing law, it rules out new laws that might change the status quo.

We don't have civil unions now, but today we could pass a law making civil unions happen in NC.

Pass the amendment, and we can't.

That's a major change.

Billy Jones

Sam wrote: "We're debating everything but the intended purpose of Amendment One."

And that would be?

Spag

CP, that paper that Sean linked to presents some of the weakest legal arguments imaginable. It almost completely avoids the application of North Carolina law to Amendment One in favor of broad, nebulous logic.

For example, the authors write "The proposed Amendment, limiting our State’s recognition of domestic violence only to marital unions..." The Amendment does no such thing. In fact nowhere in the current NC domestic violence laws is there a requirement of a "marital union" for enforcement.

The authors completely ignore the actual ruling in Boseman v. Jarrell with regard to custody cases by arguing that for some reason the Courts would lift the "best interests" test for custody cases. They offer no explanation why a Court would do this and it is a ridiculous argument considering the highest Court has already held that custody determinations have nothing to do with the relationship between the parents.

Again, I will gladly debate the authors of this article or anyone else in the legal field about the integrity and validity of these arguments.

Billy, the intended purpose as I understand it is to prevent a state court from invalidating the current prohibition against same-sex marriage or recognizing same-sex marriages or civil unions from other states.

Ed Cone

And to shut down the possibility of any law allowing civil unions in this state.

Which is why anyone who thinks civil unions might be a reasonable idea should vote against the amendment, even if they oppose gay marriage itself.

As I wrote here years ago, gay couples already can enjoy the blessings of a union in their church -- it's protection under the law that they lack. And deserve.

sean coon

Since spag isn't speaking to me anymore, someone ask him about the phrase, "domestic legal union" and its precedent legally.

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