2004, saw a Constitutional Amendment to Ohio’s Constitution on the ballot. Eleven States, including Ohio, voted to forbid same sex marriage and recognizing valid same sex marriages from other States.
The conventional wisdom has always been Karl Rove was involved in these ballot measures to drive President Bush’s base to the polls. It has the hallmarks of a Rove policy. Fire up the base to drive turnout over cultural issues. After all, Rove has never met a conservative ballot issue he didn’t like or try to use to his advantage.
Rove has denied any master plan to get these initiatives on the ballot. I, for one, always view a Karl Rove denial with skepticism. He may not have planned it, but the Bush campaign exploited the anger over same sex marriage being allowed in Massachusetts. In Ohio, the ballot passed overwhelmingly, helped in part by massive “value voter” turnout. Bush won Ohio by less than 119,000 votes. There was massive turnout in Southwestern Ohio, an extremely conservative part of the State. Even with the ballot driving turnout, and assorted shenanigans pulled by Ken Blackwell, the Bush victory was razor thin.
In the decade since, we have seen an amazing turn around on this issue by the American public. Polling shows a majority of Ohioans in favor of same sex marriage equality. Many see this as the influence of younger voters who are not obsessed with LBGT demonization and intolerance. The right sees it differently of course. It is simply propaganda from the LBGT activists and their Anti-God and Family secular media lapdogs pushing the Gay Agenda. They contend the polling is skewed and flawed. These conservatives still are sure most of Ohio is as intolerant as they.
When I listen to their arguments I am struck by the historical similarities to the opposition to interracial marriage that was the norm in America during its long, turbulent struggle with our apartheid. And those arguments also mirrored many of the stances on slavery. However, unlike slavery, these anti-interracial marriage laws were rampant through the US until 1967 when SCOTUS over turned them.
Interracial marriage wasn’t traditional marriage. It violated the religious beliefs of many. It would open the doors to all sorts of unintended results. It would undermine religion, forcing man’s law into the Church. It was a sign of America’s decline and loss of moral bearings. It would destroy the sanctity of marriage. The children would be harmed due to being seen as abominations. It would permit, even encourage predation of white women by African American men. Marriage should be set by the State. Majority rule should be the method of denying equality to citizens.
Similar arguments are rampant now in the conservative attempt to continue to treat LBGT people as less than “normal” Americans. It is simply wrong to accept those in a “deviant” lifestyle as equal citizens.
Marriage equality is an attack on religion. The ballot measure specifically exempts religions being required to recognize or perform ceremonies they are against. This is purely a secular marriage. Marriage Equality would harm marriage like a straight couple getting married at City Hall harms it.
If we waited on majority rule to end Jim Crow, we’d still be waiting.
It’s not traditional marriage. Well, neither was interracial marriage at the time.
Marriage equality would open the doors to polygamy and bestiality just like ending interracial marriage did.
Think of the children. Let’s think of children whose parents are forbidden by law to marry. Another generation must be shown how codified discrimination is a good and wondrous thing.
Like the recent past, the arguments against marriage equality are spurious at best. Legal hatred and fear at worst.
So, should the marriage equality ballot measure come to Ohio in 2014, it is a chance for Ohioans to stand and say: no more! Equal means Equal. All people of good faith will need to turn out to pass it. We know the Right will be pushing fear and hatred to defeat it. With a high, committed progressive turnout we could coat tail this into taking back all of Ohio’s statewide offices. We need to make it so.