Gay marriage, the courts, and the Cherokee precedent

Starchild, Did you see Borak? Have you ever lived in the South, or for that matter Redding, California. Using the courts to do what the legislature should do , especially state by state, may feel good, but it does not change minds. It invites serious , often violent resistence.

I wholeheartedly agree with you and disagree at the same time.

This is just one of those cases where different goods and bads compete for the highground on the merits of what should be done. That is why I do not vilify Ron Paul for his stand on the proper process to ebnd gay marriage.

Is it possible that if Marshall had made the Constitutional correct decision and not the obviously more humane decision, the results for the Cherokee may have been a lot better in the long run. Perhaps a political movement to assist the native americans may have arisen, similar to the empowerment of the anti slavery movement after the constitutional correct decision relative to Republicanism was made to enforce slave owners property rights when travelling in Northern States, I forgot the name of the case ( now I remember, it was Dredd Scott), very famous.

Anger at the Dred Scott decision got Lincoln elected, but Lincolns efforts to assert Federal authority , was one factor in inciting rebellion costing 650,000soldiers lives. Yes slavery was ended, but at what cost. Wouldn't it have died a natural death, either through European boycott of Southern Cotten and Tabacco, or, the immenent invention of the cotton gin.

It is all very messy. Decent men can disagree. But I still maintain that forcing social change from above can have very dire costs. Change from the ground up, spreading by persuasion from state to state or by market forces is more likely to bring about the desired results than edict and force. It took nearly one hundred years for the South to finally begin the healing of the civil war. Martin Luther King hurried it up by his moral leadership. The positive effect he had on the South by moral suasion may have been much more important to the ultimate acceptance of racial equality in the South , than the Federal legislation that he promoted and LBJ signed into law in the aftermath of Kenneddy's assination. In the mind of most progressives the victory was in the federal legislation of 1965. I believe the real victory was the moral suasion of Kings heroic leadership that turned minds around. My experience in Little Rock, is that blacks and whites get along on a much more human level than in the bay area. The wrongs of Jim Crow have been taken to heart. All the violence of Reconstruction, where the Feds tried and failed for 20 years or so to bring civil rights through force and occupation was a dismal failure. Real reconstruction in the hearts of the South did not occur for about eighty years after Reconstruction failed and the process of healing still goes on , retarded by the governments clumsy efforts to help.

to this day, many Black Folks and Native American's suffer under the yoke of the State that has been appointed to help them adjust to the wrongs of the past. Solving social problems has to come from the heart, and from the community , not from above. .Yes this is a real battle of competing goods, and competing wrongs.

A supreme court decision to enforce Gay Marriage will invite severe resistence .Absent edict, the acceptance of Gays and lesbians will grow organically, and in all probability the last legislation normalizing our marriages and legal rights will quietly be accomplished by some junior level legislator in Missippi in 2xxx during the semi annual clean out of old laws that lie dormant on the books, unenforced by the power of public riducle of anyone who tried. Mind by mind , city by city, company by company, and state by state full gay equality will become asnatural as breathing.. My SWAG is that the last hold out in 2045 will be Blackwater's office in Missippi. Top down edicts may slow the natural evolution of liberalized ideas by a hundred years just as the violence of Reconstruction may have delayed any degree of civil rights in the South for eighty years.

That is why, with great respect for the argument against Ron Paul, I come to his defense.


PS, Starchild, Thanks for teasing this out of me. Your annoying persistence to question helped me get down on (virtual) paper ideas that have been rolling around in my mind and heart for a long time.

and now that I think about it, the failure of Federal occupation in the South has amazing parrallels to the federal occupation of Iraq. the pipedream of forcing liberal democracy on Doomed to failure, and only making the occupied Iraqi's more resistent day by day. We could learn from our own history that Iraq was a very bad idea.

On that same theme, the history of Arkansas during and after the civil war was very similar to Iraq. Blood flowed as guerrila war and general chaos reigned. Lousiana had similar levels of violence during reconstruction. The feebleness of the carpetbagger Louisiana legislature against resistence within and without was similar to the carpetbagger government in Bagdad today.

In my own short lifetime, I have seen the tremendous strides the gay movement has made through persuasion and individual bravery. When I worked at Fort Meade I was asked to go to work as an Industrial Hygieenist for NSA. I declined, in fear that being gay would be unacceptable in that culture. NSA would have been a lot better paid position and only a mile further commute down the 95. Flash forward to 2006. The gay employees of NSA join the gay employees of the CIA for a big picnic. No legislation. Just good security policy and good employee retention.

California. Using the courts to do what the legislature should do ,
especially state by state, may feel good, but it does not change
minds. It invites serious , often violent resistence.

I'm from Tennessee. Our own "activist judges" in the state supreme
court didn't overturn the state's sodomy law until 1996. I was a
college sophomore, just barely creaking the closet door open.

I was also in student government at the University of Tennessee at the
time. The student senate voted earlier that year to support an
amendment of the University's nondiscrimination policy to include
sexual orientation. The student government president vetoed the
resolution, under the advice of university administrators, based on
the state's sodomy law.

In 1997, after the state's sodomy law was overturned by "activist
judges," on the state supreme court, the student government finally
passed and submitted to administrators an inclusive nondiscrimination
policy. The administration didn't change the policy (still hasn't,
ten years later, in fact). But at least that one stupid argument for
continuing to discriminate against gay taxpayers in a taxpayer-funded
institution had evaporated. And a whole new generation of leaders in
the state recognized that government discrimination on the basis of
sexual orientation was wrong. It may take ten or twenty years for
that effect to be felt, but let's not deny that it did most certainly
have a positive effect.

Thank goodness for "activist judges," I say. Especially in the South.