Thursday, May 08, 2008

Arizona Voters, Please Pay Close Attention

As the newest version of the no-gay-marriage state constitutional amendment waits for enough right-wing douchebags to be present in the Arizona statehouse at one time to be appended to a completely unrelated bill and passed over to the senate, please refresh your memory of what the screw-the-gays legislation is allegedly about this time:
This amendment is not about disagreements about benefits or domestic partnerships. This amendment simply is about defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Now turn your attention to the latest bit of fallout from Michigan, where their 2004 ballot referendum on amending their own state constitution to recognize only one man-one woman marriage as a legal union was simply about defining marriage too. In fact, it was so much about only protecting the definition of the word against appropriation by anyone but straight couples that its proponents repeatedly went out of their way to assure voters that the change to their constitution wouldn't prevent any employer from extending health benefits to same-sex partners of their employees. Heck, they asserted repeatedly that employers could even cover their employees' cats if they were so inclined, with no interference from the law.

Uh, yeah. Not so much.

In a long-awaited and very disappointing ruling, the Michigan Supreme Court has ruled that any partnership benefits granted to gay couples, even those as part of negotiated union agreements, are unconstitutional under the anti-gay marriage amendment, Proposal 2, passed in 2004...

The district court ruled that Proposal 2 did not affect such benefits, but that was overturned by the appeals court and the supreme court upheld the appeals court ruling. The tragic irony of this is that despite the "save the children" rhetoric from the anti-gay crowd, the first people affected by this ruling will be the children of gay couples who may lose health care and other protections as a result.

It's never just about the definition of marriage, never just about preventing gay couples from trundling over to the courthouse and slapping down fifty bucks like any straight couple can do--something state statutes already prohibit. It's purely about opening the door to a multitude of interpretations that will be used to strip away hard-won rights and benefits. It's about one particular strain of self-proclaimed Christians bald-facedly bearing false witness in order to enshrine their religious beliefs into civic policy, so that they can immediately turn around and lay waste to the lives of people who have done nothing to harm them beyond having the temerity to simply exist.


Anonymous said...


Your post is so easily proven false.

Even OPPONENTS of the marriage amendment in Michigan refute what you write. The MI Supreme Court Wednesday upheld an earlier Appeals Court ruling on the amendment.

Attorney Jay Kaplan of the Michigan ACLU, lead counsel for the homosexual plaintiffs in the Michigan court case, last June told Lansing City Pulse:

"'The Michigan Court of Appeals decision never said that public employers could not provide health care coverage to domestic partners of employees,' Kaplan wrote in an e-mail. He said that employers can provide health insurance coverage for domestic partners as long as they do not specifically recognize the domestic partner relationship — by filing domestic partner benefit forms, for example — when determining criteria for insurance eligibility."

Between the Lines, a homosexual activist newsweekly in Detroit, reported:

"(ACLU-Michigan lawyer Jay) Kaplan says that even under the Appeals Court ruling, benefits can be offered, but they have to be done in a way which does not recognize same-sex partners or relationships."

Kalamazoo Alliance for Equality, a homosexual activist group, said last June in a news release: "The Michigan Court of Appeals did not say that health insurance coverage for domestic partners is illegal. The court said that public employers cannot use criteria that recognizes the domestic partner relationship."

The above statements precisely mirror what the supporters of the amendment have said all along, including before the November 2004 election at which the amendment was approved.

Thus, both sides of the issue in Michigan dispute what you say.

Jeff said...

What a load of huey. I get the Michigan news and they are talking about how the two biggest universities (U of M and M State) will have to stop offering benefits.

And they used the same backdoor amendment to stop domestic partner benefits in Ohio (Even after they said they would not!!!). And I'm not talking about only government jobs either!

Anonymous said...

Huey indeed, Jeff. I also get the Michigan news, and they're reporting that MSU and UM and everybody else have already addressed this ruling (in advance) so that no one is losing their benefits.

Some examples:

May 8, 2008

Headline: Same-sex benefits ruling might have minimal effect, many packages already reworded to blunt state Supreme Court ruling


May 8, 2008

"U-M and the city (of Ann Arbor) had previously altered their policies by taking out any mention of 'same-sex.' That revision should allow them to continue extending benefits within the law, said officials with the ACLU, city of Ann Arbor and U-M."

You need to read a little more carefully.