Friday, January 2, 2009

Democracy and Homosexuality

Here is an article discussing the votes in South Dakota, Colorado and California against gay marriage. In a democracy, what does this mean? More people were willing to mark their inclination against gay marriage on a ballot than were willing to mark their inclination in favor of gay marriage, that's all it means. So how can that justify the use of state coercion against gays to prevent them from entering into a marriage?

In the "good" old days (and in some parts of the world today), sodomy was outright illegal with punishments varying from an overnight stay in jail to torture and burning at the stake. Certainly, no moral justification can be offered for these behaviors and none but a Fred Phelps would even try to offer any, these days.

But we still rationalize the same behavior in principle, just not in degree. Inducing completely unnecessary emotional suffering on people who want to marry is not morally justifiable. How does 50%+1 or more of those participating in a poll indicating that they would rather homosexuals not be allowed to marry legitimize the use of state coercion to prohibit them? It doesn't because it can't for the same reason that a majority vote can't morally legitimize torture or murder.

The watchword among Democrats, liberals and others in the Obama era is "Change" but nothing is really changing so long as we continue to try to use the state as an instrument for imposing our ideas about the way it oughtta be onto others. All that has changed is that a new alliance of special interests and lobbies will have more influence in coercing us to conform to their desires and the special interests and lobbies that have prevailed for the last 8(+) years will go into hibernation and survival mode, awaiting their next opportunity to topple the old king of the hill and install their own.

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