Prop 8 passes, Californians tell the world, “We’re bigots!”

California’s bigots passed Proposition 8, a state constitutional amendment to strip the existing right to marry from same-sex couples. Californians must be so proud. On Tuesday, they demonstrated to the world that one can be mature enough to elect a black man as President, and still be diseased with bigotry. While no longer fashionable to spit on black people, apparently it is still popular in the US to spit on gay people. So popular, in fact, that we can still pass laws keeping them just shy of legally human. Bigots to gays: “Yes, we can… hate you.”

It staggers the imagination how stupid people can be about gayness. In America today, most people are settled with the concept of black person = person. It was pretty hard to get that basic idea across to folks, and required not only a Civil War but decades of strife and suffering. All because a lot of people who weren’t black thought they were the master race, and got their kicks reveling in how great and superior they were, as they drank themselves to death in their trailers.

The civil rights struggle really was only skin deep. Apparently a lot of people failed to get the memo that civil rights apply to other minority attributes, too. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Americans were dragged, kicking and screaming, into the modern era of racial equality. Now everyone is proud of how non-racist they are. But the idea behind civil rights wasn’t skin color, it was humanity. It was about forcing people to finally admit to themselves that everyone on the bloody face of the Earth doesn’t have to be your bloody clone. There are different kinds of people, and just because you are a particular kind of person and a lot of other people are like you, doesn’t mean you get to stomp your boot heel into everyone else’s neck.

America is great not because of how many bombs it has but because it was founded on the idea that the majority doesn’t get to put the minority into concentration camps. The majority doesn’t get to tell the minority how to think, how to live, where to eat, and which end of the bus they can sit in. Democracy in America is not the kind of democracy where two wolves and a sheep get to vote on what’s for dinner.

The bigots of California are no different from the bigots of any of the other states where gay marriage bans passed on Tuesday. Bigots are all equal in their willful stupidity. But in California they took their loathsome evil one step further… they took rights away from people. They decided that gay sex was icky enough that no one should get to do that and also enjoy the legal rights of hetero couples to safely and reliably manage property and child custodial rights. Perhaps next they’ll insist that gay people cannot run for public office, or gay votes are only worth three fifths of a human vote. Why not? If you’re straight you’re part of the master race, right?

It was especially demoralizing for Prop 8 to pass on the same day the US elected the first black President in US history. It was as if the bigots were saying, “You think you liberals can win? Well, just you wait. We’re still here, and our evil will never die.” Homophobes are already on the ash heap of history, and Prop 8 is their high water mark… they just don’t realize it yet. What, do they think gay people will just give up wanting equality? That gay people will just vanish quietly? The homophobes are fighting a losing, defensive war against an opponent who will never give up, never go away, and never stop reaching for equality.

People want freedom. Wasn’t this W’s big theme? People want to be free of nosy neighbors telling them which way to unroll their toilet paper, what haircuts they can have, what thoughts they can think, and what kind of private adult consensual sex they can enjoy. People are sick of having obsessive-compulsive halfwits waving Bronze Age fairy tales around and shrieking about sin. People want to be left alone to live their private lives in peace and security.

You want to know what the gay agenda is? It’s to have a life that is free of pestering, sexually-repressed zealots. You know what? That’s my agenda too, and I’m straight.

Years from now, after civil unions are normal and commonplace, after bans on gay marriage are quietly removed from state constitutions – as quietly and shamefacedly as interracial marriage bans were removed years ago – people will shake their heads and try to imagine how people could have been so stupid and evil back then. Students in political science classes will laugh at how idiotic and self-contradictory it was for people to pass laws discriminating against gays on the same day they voted a black man into the White House.

I wish more people had the honesty and courage to look at their own shortcomings – their own fear, ignorance, and blind hatred – and realize that the problem isn’t with gay people, or Jews, or blacks, or left-handed people, or whatever the hell idiosyncrasies their delusions have fixed on. The problem is their own sense of absolute, cosmic importance. Have you ever known a bigot to believe in racial (or sexual, or religious) superiority, while also not themselves belonging to their imagined perfect demographic? Me neither.

Today I’m so proud of having lived long enough to see this Presidential election. I can’t even talk about it in person without tearing up. I grew up in the late 1960s, in Alabama. My grandfather was a Grand Wizard in the KKK. He lived a life of bitter alcoholism, permanently furious that he couldn’t enjoy the lavish lifestyle of his own plantation-owning grandfather. When I was a little kid, a black woman whose own grandmother was a slave took care of me and fed me while my mother worked. My black other mother – as I thought of her in my childlike way – used to tell me stories of the old days, when she and her sisters were my grandmother’s servants, and when picking cotton was a lifelong profession. I was lucky to have her in my family – which she was, regardless of genetics. I was also lucky that my own parents did not buy into the poison of their Southern pasts. I was lucky to learn better than that.

On Tuesday our nation took a big step forward. I just wish we hadn’t taken a little step backward at the same time.


~ by Planetologist on November 6, 2008.

10 Responses to “Prop 8 passes, Californians tell the world, “We’re bigots!””

  1. Prop 8 wasn’t defining anything… it was a proposition to take away rights. Marriage is defined many ways, and people get married for different reasons. One way of defining marriage is a union between a man and a womn… this way of defining is mostly rooted in religion. If you are religious, and want to marry someone of the opposite sex… then get married in a church. If you aren’t religious, and believe marriage to be a union with whom you love, then get married by other means. Oh wait, people don’t have that option now.

  2. Flat wrong, on both counts.

    The entire intent of Prop 8 was to change the law to take away rights from a specific group of people. Existing California law allowed gay marriage, but the bigots and hatemongers just couldn’t stand that, so they got together with others of their greasy ilk to craft revenge on their punching bag of choice; gay people. It wasn’t inadvertent… it was deliberate, specific, and a permanent shame on our country.

    Also, people in the US don’t get to vote on whether other human beings should have rights. The USA is not… repeat, NOT… built on simple majority rule, where any passing whim of the stupid masses can be made into law. That’s what the Constitution is all about; protecting the rights of the minority from the fad hatreds of the majority. Why have freedom of speech? Because popular speech doesn’t NEED protection.

    And anyone who seriously proposes the the rights of bigots are infringed when they’re told they can’t infringe the rights of others, well… either they are just trying to get a rise out of someone, or they’re narcissistic monsters who think the world revolves around them. If someone’s personal creed tells them they simply MUST lynch black people, no one is going to shed a tear for that person’s shattered expectations when they’re kept by force of law from doing that.

    The bigoted filth who voted for Prop 8 need to wake up and recognize that they’re not the only people in this country, and the rest of us are under no obligation to march to the tune of their disgusting psychoses.

  3. I thought that prop 8 was defining that marriage was to be between man and women. That may in advertainly stopped the gay marriage thing but marriage never had to be defined before. Now the people have voted and who are we to disrespect another’s opinion, that would then make one become the very bigot one whould hate to become.

  4. […] my previous post I focused on how fundamentally evil Prop Hate was on civil rights grounds. Instead, Mr. Olbermann […]

  5. I had heard a report on the radio that black voters supported Prop 8 by a huge margin of 70%! SHAME SHAME SHAME from those who should no better!

  6. Yes, Utah is beginning to look like a real threat. The Mormons have their own state, but apparently that’s not enough. They run the now-homophobic Boy Scouts by economic fiat, and now they want to regulate everyone else’s private lives, too. Is this payback for the polygamy thing?

  7. I am right there with you, my own uncle, a principal at an elementary school, believes they don’t have the right to happiness just as a murderer doesn’t have the right to happiness. I didn’t realize how much Utah “owns” California.

  8. Hey Nancey! Thanks for coming over to take a look, and of course, post away! 😀

  9. It was really disheartening when 8 passed. I was surprised, actually, because California is known to be really liberal. A shame. I like this blog… do you mind if I post it on my myspace?

  10. Yes, I agree 100%. My own state passed a ban on unmarried couples fostering children. Not so bad maybe if it weren’t sponsored by the same group that tried to pass a similar measure to ban gays from fostering children last year.

    Can you imagine the thinking? “We can’t ban gays from fostering outright. I’m sorry unmarried people, you’re just going to have to a take the hit so we can stop those filthy gays from indoctrinating our poor orphans. Oh, and orphans, we know that there are loving ‘families’ that want to foster you, but they’re gay and that’s just not a risk we’re willing to take.”

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