Haters Fight NY Gay Marriage With Idiocy, 2 Million Dollars, Lawsuits, “Bloodshed,” Etc.

There’s still an atmosphere of celebration in NYC after a weekend of 659 marriage licenses for same-sex couples. But not everyone is taking part, because some people are still, as they are wont to do, bizarrely perceiving the legally recognized happiness of some families as some kind of vicious attack on their own! Who would do that, you ask?

Well, obviously Maggie Gallagher of The National Organization for Marriage. Despite the fact that her increasingly ineffectual organization – after one of their “Summer of Marriage” campaign organizers defected to form the National Organization for Marriage Equality and the Wall Street Journal recently called them “deceptive” and “sore losers”  – hasn’t accomplished anything in quite a while, Gallagher is now vowing to punish those New York politicians who helped marriage equality come to their state.

why you mad at these cute people tho?

In a slightly more legitimate but ultimately probably useless attack on New York married couples’ newfound legal stability, a group called New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms is filing a lawsuit that claims that the new law allowing same-sex couples to marry is “in violation of the Open Meetings Law and the Senate’s own rules.”

“Constitutional liberties were violated. Today we are asking the court to intervene in its rightful role as the check and balance on an out-of-control State Legislature,” said Reverend Jason J. McGuire, executive director of the group and a resident of upstate Livingston County, where New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms v. New York State Senate was filed.

The Senate and state attorney general are declining to comment on the lawsuit, although a spokesman for the governor put it generously when he said the lawsuit had no merit, and also that “the plaintiffs lack a basic understanding of the laws of the State of New York.” If the lawsuit was successful, it would nullify all the same-sex marriages performed in New York, thus making it an even more devastating blow than Prop 8 in California.

But these attacks aren’t likely to work. Aside from the obvious obstacles they face – that NOM has virtually no real political clout and the lawsuit just filed has no legal merit – they may not be meaningful enough to conservative voters or politicians that anyone is willing to support them. America’s recognition of the legitimacy of gay families is higher than ever before, and even insiders in the Republican party have indicated they may just not find it worth it to continue persecuting queer couples. Even Texas governor Rick Perry and Presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann, who’s one of the most anti-gay politicians you can find out there today, have indicated that they may be giving up the federal fight on gay marriage and deferring to the states.

At an event in Aspen, Perry said, “Our friends in New York six weeks ago passed a statute that said marriage can be between two people of the same sex. And you know what? That’s New York, and that’s their business, and that’s fine with me.” He continued, “That is their call. If you believe in the 10th Amendment, stay out of their business.”

Of course anti-gay activists are trying to fight progress in New York, as they are all over the country – but the important thing is that it’s clear they’re not going to win. New York’s step forward on marriage equality is already spurring activism in nearby New Jersey. It’s not change in and of itself, but activists can take it as a sign that future change for same-sex marriage is going to come from us, not from bigots.

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Rachel is Autostraddle's Senior Editor and the editor who presides over books and news & politics coverage. Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy."

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23 Comments

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    I’ve never understood how the people behind organizations like Maggie’s think that minority rights should be put to a vote. That is never how minority rights have worked in this country. They’ve always been won through legislature and judicial action. Did they just sleep through that section of their history classes? All of them?

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    I’m just going to ignore Maggie Gallagher and her bullshit and focus on the happiness that is gay marriage in New York! She’s just getting desperate because she knows her side is losing. Also, New Jersey sounds pretty hopeful so that’s cool too!

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      Sadly, I don’t think that’s going to happen. I would say all politicians are whores, but that would be a totally uncalled for insult to sex workers. Unlike politicians, they’re honest and actually do the job they are hired to do.

      During the last election cycle, a friend of mine was the campaign manager for a (totally doomed) Democratic candidate for state government in Wyoming. This sounds more impressive than it is; the campaign consisted of the candidate, my friend, and another friend of theirs. Anyway, my friend was already pretty jaded, but even he was unprepared for the unbelievable cesspit that is American politics. Even if my friend’s candidate wasn’t doomed just for being a Democrat, he was just too honest and idealistic to actually get anywhere. The candidates for all the positions make the same basic rounds during campaign season, so they kind of get to know each other and socialize. My friend said that he was really surprised by the Republican candidates, because they all made the usual rabid socially conservative remarks and promises during the speeches and meet-and-greet type things and so he was prepared for them to be really nasty to him, but behind the scenes they were totally cool with him and flat out admitted they personally didn’t give a shit about those things and are just interested in those government posts because they’re businessmen and want to make legislation more favorable to their business interests.

      So what I’m saying is, I have no faith at all that the fiscally conservative Republicans will tell the socially conservative ones to fuck off when they could just go along with them and get all those votes. That’s just not how American politics works anymore.

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        One big thing has changed in the last two years… the tea party has not only further radicalized the Republican party in general, but has emboldened the social conservatives.

        For many years (Reagan, Bush I, etc) Republicans would run on a myriad of social issues, but once they got to office would focus on money and business and only pay lip service to the religious nutjobs. The Wall Street overlords of the Republican party liked the voted and vigour that the social conservatives brought, but knew that they were to the far right of the nation, and should they get to enact TOO much of their agenda, that the majority might revolt. The most important thing for the big money interests is to keep “their boys” in power, to protect their bottom lines. So Republicans would speak loudly about social issues to sew up those votes, but concentrate on money once elected (like the Republicans your friend met).

        Over the years, however, the social conservatives worked their way upwards in party ranks, until they commanded important, key positions during the Bush II administration. Here’s where the tension between the money masters and the true believers really started bubbling up towards the surface. The social conservatives wanted more payback for their years of faithful service, while the big money interests just wanted them to vote Republican and shut the hell up. If it hadn’t been for the disastrous Bush second term (where everyone felt they had to fight for their lives), things would have boiled over at the last Republican convention. As it was, McCain picked Sarah Palin solely to satisfy the social conservatives, who threatened to walk if he picked who he wanted (renegade Democrat/weasel Joe Lieberman).

        Since the election of Barak Obama, the tea party has shaken the Republican party to it’s core. These are true believers of a different sort… easily co-opted by social conservatives, sure (they’re very racist/xenophobic), but also with enough economic ideology (most of it wrong, but hey…) to lure in some of the soft fiscal conservatives. They won some seats in 2010, the media over-rated their importance, the Republican party bosses believed the hype, and now the party stands paralyzed. The Republican majority can’t govern in the House, and Boehner has lost control of his caucus.

        Look at the debt-ceiling “crisis”: raising the debt ceiling is a nothing job, most often. Reagan raised it 18 times in 8 years. But the tea party wants to shut down government, and the rest of the party can’t say no to them, and even though their Wall Street overlords are telling them “do NOT let this country default on it’s debts and destroy it’s credit rating!”, the teahadists have them by the theoretical balls. Thus, the Republicans can’t bring themselves to say “yes” to anything, even their OWN members’ proposals!

        The social conservatives have been looking at how the bigwigs have been kissing the asses of teahadist radicals, who most of the country hates, and are starting to ask “Hey… why don’t you bend for US like that?!?” There’s rumblings that several big evangelical groups will launch a 3rd party if certain people get the Republican nomination.

        That ‘certain person” is Mitt Romney. The big money guys love him… he’s in the old “say one thing, do another” Republican fiscal conservative mold. He’s raising more money than any other Republican candidate, and has been all but anointed by the big money interests. The social conservative/teahadist elements want Michelle Bachman or Sarah Palin. There are already THREE teahadist groups dedicated to one thing: defeating Mitt Romney. The socials don’t like him because he’s A: Mormon, and B: took some moderate positions to get elected Governor of Massachusettes, and though he tries to distance himself from those old positions, he can’t and instead gets the nickname “Flip-Flop Romney”. If Mitt gets the nomination, expect a BIG showdown between the social/teahadists, and the fiscal conservatives. They’re not going to roll over anymore, and the closer they ally themselves with the teahadists, the more bloody the confrontation WILL be.

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    The thing that I actually can’t wrap my head around is that these people (must have, right?) have seen the trajectory of human history and the growing acceptance that the queer community is just as deserving of civil rights as anyone else, and they ACTUALLY think they can stop that. The world is rapidly changing around them, people’s morals and values are changing, and they actually, firmly believe they have the power to just make that stop. Permanently, forever. Like reverse gay marriage in New York and then everyone will go back to conservative Christian bowl cuts and pink two-piece suits and it will never ever come back. It baffles me.

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    These conservative ass holes found a new minority to take out their frustrations – illegal immigrants.

    I can’t wait for DOMA to be repealed and for prop 8 to go down in flames in California, if these two things happen the anti gay bigots will be forever defeated.

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