Day 10 of Prop 8 Gay Marriage Trial: Kenneth Miller Time is Less Filling, Tries to h8

Welcome back! You all look very pretty today, did you get a lot of sleep over the weekend? No? Well, that’s working well for you. Today is the day where Olson&Boies wrap up the case for Team Totally Right and the h8ers get to start their turn. Are you curious about what they’ll say, and how they could possibly try to argue against our ideas which are Totally Right? If maybe they will try to summon the devil himself and get him to testify that he, too, loves scissoring? If they will shout TESTIFY in the courtroom and a gospel choir will break into beautiful song which will turn out to actually be about the gays?  Well, Queerty has some ideas about what they’ve got up their sexless sleeves. (They didn’t think of that one though, I did.)

Possible/probable h8er strategies:

Voters (h8ers) were just exercising their rights. This isn’t about gay people, it’ s about democracy! Why do you hate democracy, gay people? It would be unAmerican to not get to vote on every single issue ever, even (or especially!) the ones that affect other people’s personal lives but not yours. Kenneth Miller, the h8ers’ first witness, is a voter-initiative expert, so this will probs come up.

FAMILY FAMILY FAMILY OMG FAMILY Despite the approximately 320,456 expert witnesses who have already testified that gay families are fine for children, the h8ers will probably be able to find their own witnesses who say that unless you have both a mother and a father in a straight heteronormative family, the child will develop a pig tail, like that kid in Harry Potter.

Mr. Tam’s cracked-out testimony about how gays are child molesters and aliens from space will perhaps make their argument seem a little less credible, but they’ll also try to distance themselves from him as much as possible. Because he’s crazy.

“The institution of marriage” We’ve already had a bunch of super smart witnesses testify that marriage was not always exclusively for heteros, and also that it is a pretty weird institution that has always needed some legal editing in order to be more fair, but the h8ers will try their darnedest to refute that. I’m not sure how, because they did a pretty lame job of that in the cross-examination, so I guess get excited to find out!

Haven’t you seen Will&Grace? They kind of already did this in cross, but we’re curious to see whether they might try the tack again that because attractive famous people like Jake Gyllenhaal were willing to be in Brokeback Mountain that gays are “politically powerful,” and probably have their own secret volcano hideout like Dick Cheney.

Straight people’s lives are so hard We’ve already heard a lot about this, but it’s a good guess that they’ll be trying hard to make the case that this entire case is really just about attacking straight (religious, conservative) people. For instance, Tam already tried to back out because he felt threatened, probs he was afraid the gay waves would be able to make it through his tinfoil hat. Tune in to find out how your proposing to your girlfriend makes innocent straight people cry!

The long shoThompson: POLYGAMY I can’t decide whether it would be terrible or awesome or terrible/AWESOME for them to really try this. Actually no it would probs just be terrible, please don’t.

Will these predictions come true? Will there be a giant cake with a stripper inside, and the h8ers will reveal this was all an elaborate setup for a surprise party? Let’s find out!

Part One:

Judge Judy’s Got Nothing on This

We start off with some legit Courtroom Drama; the h8ers are all “We want to have this guy Schubert as a witness,” and our side is all “um, no, also we just found this out, not cool” and there is a lot of talk about whether this is ok – apparently there are a lot of documents being submitted, and the h8ers want Schubert to “authenticate” these documents and ascertain whether they came from or not. Our side says that if all he’s really doing is authenticating documents that’s fine, but they don’t want things to get out of hand. The judge says he’ll think about it, and we move on.

No, wait, not really moving on. Apparently we have a lot of objections today! Boies is arguing that some of the witnesses the h8ers want to call aren’t competent to testify on what they’re being asked to – for instance, Dr. Young “has very limited expertise. She’s not an expert in psych, soc., anthropology, and clinical development. She’s an expert in religion. She is an expert in Hinduism. She never did study in the US about prejudice against gays and lesbians. She has never studied how many gays and lesbians are raising children or the consequences. She’s not even familiar with views of US churches toward homos. She doesn’t even know the proportion of children raised by gay and lesbian or single couples.”

This whole process that they’re talking about with the judge is super confusing – there’s a bunch of color coded pieces of paper? I bet an intern had to take care of that.

Judge Walker says, “Happily most are yellow.”

I have no idea what is going on. I think Boies is saying that the part of these witnesses’ testimony that they are competent in should be admitted, and the rest should be thrown out. Judge Walker says he is going to think about this one too. Dude has a lot of thinking to do. Now we’re talking about binders again, oh God.

There’s still no witness, just one lawyer from each side going through document by document and arguing about whether it is, in fact, traceable to There is also a lot of talk about “simulcasts.” Basically the deal is that is trying to stop as much of their own campaign information as possible from being admitted. I guess it never occurred to anyone that this would make it to court in a serious case, and so it didn’t seem important at the time that it was made up and homophobic?

Like this video, for instance:

“The video shows 6 minutes of Pastor Jim and Tony Perkins and others. Roberto Miranda, Lion of Judah Church of Boston, saying,  “Polygamists are waiting in the wings! If we have same sex marriage, we’ll have polygamy next.” On a Perkins video from US Capitol. People from all over America do not understand the implications of same sex marriage. It destroys the foundation of marriage… Let’s just say that sexual attraction is  the definition. Pedophiles would have to be allowed to marry. Mothers and sons. Man who wanted to marry a horse. Any combination would have to be allowed.”

I’m sorry, is there anyone out there who actually wants to marry a horse? Whose idea was that? Who wrote this? I saw a documentary on the BBC once about dudes who were sexually attracted to cars, but no one wants to marry horses, they are huge and scary. I’d like to quote Tinkerbell, from Autostraddle’s Roundtable on “So Prop 8 Was Upheld,” What Do We Do Next?”:

Hello Homosexuals, it is Tinkerbell. As a dog I do not have many rights, for example I cannot join the army, vote, or smoke the ganja. I also have special privileges like I do not have to work, also my love for Littlefoot my boyfriend and for Kelly Clarkson. What I do not enjoy is people saying a woman marrying a woman will lead to a woman marrying a dog. I do not want to marry a woman. I am very little and she would crush my bones. Humans have human laws and dogs have dog laws, human laws should be equal for all humans and they can be equal for all humans without involving dogs. What is wrong with you people. Love Tinkerbell.

There are more videos like this, don’t worry! (Are these “simulcasts?” Is this what “simulcasts” are?) The h8er’s argument about these videos is that they may never have been shown to voters. I can see where she’s coming from, but what does that mean if you guys are just making these videos for fun? Like, do you show them when you have parties?

And also srsly who wants to marry horses, no one. Except I guess other horses.

I’m still not over that. Other fun facts we are learning in the admission of these documents – the religious denominations involved in the grassroots Yes on 8 movement (Evangelicals, Mormons, Catholics, Orthodox Jews) and also I guess the American Anthropological Association says that, based on the APA’s view of race, protected status is also due to homosexuals. Thanks, I guess? Defo did not know they existed, ok! There are a bunch of letters from government organizations w/r/t government policy from the 60s and 70s that demonstrate a strong anti-homo stance, some statistics from Holland that back up our girl Badgett from earlier… and we’re done! I think this makes the official wrap-up of Team Totally Right, and it is now the h8ers’ turn to rock Judge Walker’s world.

Part Two:

Meet Kenneth Miller. We’re Not Sure Why He’s Here.

Meet Kenneth Miller! A quick background on him, in hard-to-read and choppy sentences: “Pomona and then Harvard. Practiced at Morrison & Foerster for five years. Two years in litigation office in LA and then three years to open Sacramento office. Then did contract work for firm. In Sacto, did regulatory work representing SF Airport, other clients who had matters before government. PhD in poli sci 2002 at UC Berkeley. Associ. Prof of government at Claremont McKenna. Tenured. Six years before that, asso. Prof. for one year, was visiting assoc. prof. at UC SF…. Studies state and local politics mainly in CA but also in other states. Redistricting, fiscal policy and the like. Teach intro to AM Politics. Every year, teach a class in CA politics. Every year teach senior seminar and usually teach course in Constitutional law. Main focus of scholarly research starting at Berkeley has been and is direct democracy and initiative process. Applied Madisonian critique and disadvantages that direct democracy has vs. representative democracy.”

He’s also supposed to be an expert in “gays and lesbians in politics, as well as coalitions that affect two parties, particularly role of gays and lesbians as key part of the Democratic coalition. Also will cover other minorities in politics.” All the other minorities! What fun!

Boies asks, and Thompson confirms, Miller is “certainly [an] expert in gays and lesbians.” Did you make it through all that? Me neither. Annnd we’re off to a great starThompson:

Miller: A recent journal article I wrote for French journal on politics focused on why Prop. 8 was unable to pass to even in a state that elected Barack Obama.
Judge: Do you mean did pass?
Miller: Yes, I’m sorry your honor.

You guys, he probably just has stage fright. Or actually maybe he’s just a hilarious witness! Here’s the first question:

BOIES: Have you written any peer reviewed articles on the power of gays and lesbians?
MILLER: Depends upon your definition?
BOIES: Of what?
MILLER: Of power of gays and lesbians. I’ve written that French article.
BOIES: Other than ‘that French article’ as you referred to it, have you written any other peer reviewed articles about power of gays and lesbians?

Hokay then! This is what we’re starting out with – some really hardcore and to-the-point questioning about the political power of gays and lesbians. Miller says we “ran a good campaign against Prop 8” and have the support of the Obama administration, both of which in real life are debatable but I can see how someone could think both those things.

It gets a little more ridiculous when he talks about how he can tell we have political power because we’ve “won ballot measures” – I’m sorry, but what have those been? We have lost every single marriage vote! Every single one! I’m not proud of that, but get your facts straight! Boies is now attacking his expertise pretty ruthlessly – Miller claims to be an expert on gay and lesbian discrimination, but when Boies starts drilling him on gay history from the last few decades, he’s mostly lost. He says he learned a lot about it while reviewing for this case, but that doesn’t really make you an expert, does it? That just means you checked out a lot of library books/wikipedia over the last few weeks. Good job doing your homework, I guess? Maybe he was at Debate Camp with Sarah Palin.

BOIES: You did not know who Alan Speer or Elaine Goldman were and that they were elected as first openly gay in 1976 and 9175 respectively?
MILLER: No. I did not know and do not. Know some were elected in1970s.
BOIES: We object to his testimony as expert out of area of initiatives. He does not even know the key facts.

Oh snap! The Judge keeps Miller in the game, and says as long as we keep Miller answering questions on the one thing he does know about (California politics and voter initiatives) then it should be fine. Miller is probs wishing he wore some Depends for this one, though!

Boies follows up by asking Miller what the determinants of political power are – he answers “Money, access to lawmakers, ability to persuade and two others.”

Ok: 1) I’m broke, and everyone reading this probs is too, 2) The only lawyer I know is my aunt and she works for an insurance company. and 3) You can’t remember the two others? What kind of expert are you? He says we were able to raise/spend more on Prop 8 campaigning than the other side (he puts it at $43 million vs. $40 million) but honestly I find that really hard to believe, because that is actually not true.

Now Miller goes through all the associations and relationships that he says mean we’re “powerful” – basically, how many friends we have, how pretty we are, etc. He lists:

1. Dem party in last ten years in CA and national.
2. Elected officials from Congress and WH to local and state.
3. Labor.
4. Corporations. “Major corporations are increasingly allied with lgbt rights movement.”
5. Newspapers is 5th ally; I’ve done a systematic investigation of CA newspapers and NYT all allied for ss marriage.
6. Celebrities can garner attention and provide positive images.
7. Religious and faith-based are well organized and can get people to help on campaigns.
8. “Professional associations of physicians, doctors and others.”

Okay, if those people are so powerful, let’s just let them vote then. Obvs they are the tastemakers of society, they should get a deal with Nike. Nike probs is alligned with us too ’cause of our alliance with them. It’s like Survivor and we need shoes.

Also he forgot to include the most important No on 8 Supporters at all, who should have really transformed the election for us but did not:

Personally think we’re kind of reaching when we get to “professional associations of physicians,” but whatever. He names a bunch of California politicians that range from vaguely to impressively friendly towards us. I don’t know, didn’t we already do pretty much all of this in a cross-examination earlier?

Oh good, the union of farm workers supports us.

Also LOL Cats.

They’ll bring the whole country to its knees for Ellen & Portia! JK, probs not. Google supports us! Yeah, duh, because they have that thing in their mission statement about not doing evil, and Yes on 8 is OBVIOUSLY EVIL. Anyways.

Can’t this be redirected as evidence that everyone who’s anyone thinks we’re right? Hello. Welcome to Club “We’re Right,” get in line.

We also bring up Brad Pitt again – yes, I know, we’re all very excited about that one. You know what, his girlfriend is a f*cking queer, this is not that surprising y’all.

Also yes, it’s true, there were some liberal churches that, like, phone-banked for us. Like four of them. Oh shit, son! Walker just asked how many of those churches perform same-sex marriages, and Miller didn’t even know. Also, to admit that any of them might not perform same-sex marriages makes them look somewhat less than supportive. I realize I’m biased, but to be honest, Miller just sounds kind of dumBoies:

MILLER: If you have an idea and you are able to persuade a person in power that your idea is, should be acted upon, your ability to persuade that lawmaker or in initiative process is key.
THOMPSON: Can you provide example of persuasive idea is favorable to outcome?
MILLER: AA had very little political power. One of the primary instruments was the power of ideas. They used the power of ideas to persuade lawmakers of their case.

It sounds like he’s doing a presentation on MLK Day in the 5th grade. “Thank God for the Power of Ideas! We shall overcome!” Boy, the civil rights movement worked because people put their motherf*ckng lives into it, went to jail, and had the shit beaten out of them in the streets. It was not because of “the power of ideas,” it was because they didn’t have time for punks like you, they went out and got shit done. Or, as Rick Jacobs puts it, “This is really lightweight stuff. Compare and contrast with the real experts over the last two weeks.”

“Boy, the civil rights movement worked because people put their motherf*ckng lives into it, went to jail, and had the shit beaten out of them in the streets.”

Even when we do get to his “area of expertise,” Miller is just not really bringing his A game. His own lawyer asks him to talk about other same-sex marriage initiatives that have been brought to ballot in California, and he can’t remember what all of them were; when finally asked about the voter initiative process, he busts out with this: “It is true that LGBT movement has lost twice: Prop. 22 and Prop. 8. They were unsuccessfully in direct democracy. California voters have not used the initiative process to revoke other rights granted by the voters. It cannot be said that those were stripped away by voters in the election process.”

Translation: It’s true that the queers got shafted, but it seems like it’s only happened to them, so… not a big deal! He’s completely refusing to engage in the question of whether or not it’s unfair that a voter initiative allows a majority to vote on the rights of a minority, and pretty much saying “It only happens some of the time!”

Then he goes on to mention a few initiatives which, admittedly, would have been horrendous (demanding that gay teachers be fired and requiring that blood banks report those who are HIV+) and saying that since voters didn’t pass them, the process can’t be discriminatory. This is stupid – it’s still leaving things up to the whim of the voters, even if the whim happens to occasionally be right – but also deliberately missing the point.

The fact that one or two times voters had the chance to take away basic human rights and didn’t doesn’t elevate us to some higher, invulnerable status; it just makes us a little more like everyone else.

There’s this constant confusion among conservatives between “special rights” and “basic rights” – it’s not a “special right” to get to keep your job even if your boss dislikes you for a discriminatory reason, and having it doesn’t make you “politically powerful.” Now he’s doing the same thing with hate crimes: yes, it’s true that we passed some fegislation, but the reason for that is WE KEEP GETTING F*CKING MURDERED. That is not something that happens to “powerful” people. End of story.

Also, on Obama: “[He] signed Matthew Shepard Act. Appointed homos to major positions in admin. Went to HRC dinner and made commitments about willingness to support their objectives and agree to support repeal of DADT. Gay Pride Month… Some members of GLBT community think he has not given enough support, but by objective standards, he has.” Well! Thank you for clearing that one up for us, Kenneth! Maybe this man is not really a witness at all, but just here to annoy us. Yes. I am going to go ahead and say that that is true.

Ok, finally, Boies has him back now! Guys Boies is my fave, for real. Mostly his plan just seems to be making him super uncomfortable – he’s asking him what the government’s position on same-sex marriage is “as an expert,” and then acting confused when Miller, of course, does not know.

BOIES: Is it fair to say that you have had time to get a lot more information about these matters since your depo?
MILLER: Yes, in the past six weeks.
BOIES: At your depo, you did not know how many states had laws that protect gays and lesbians against discrimination.

Apparently Miller didn’t know a lot of things at his deposition; there is growing confusion in the courtroom about what, exactly, Miller is an expert on. Boies asks him what portion of the material he’s testifying on he found himself and what the lawyers found for him; he’s having him go down the index of documents and mark which were his and which were his counsel’s. Basically, this is confirming what we kind of already knew – that the h8ers scrambled to find information that looked like it supported their case, and then scrambled to find a purported expert who could tell a judge that this information was true. Wait while I make my “surprised” face.

Ok, done now.

We’ll stop for a quick Judge Walker Is A Special Guy MomenThompson: “The judge is standing up, walking around, pouring himself water. He undid his robe and got some air in there. He’s watching the “witness” work through the list….slowly.) Now the judge refastened his robe and is bouncing up and down.” Ok, we’re back:

BOIES: What do question marks mean?
MILLER: Most of question marks mean I do not remember whether I found these myself or whether counsel showed it to me?

Ok then! You guys, I’m starting to feel a little sorry for this guy, for real. It’s like he didn’t know he was actually going to have to testify in court.

BOIES: Looking at demonstrative 33, none of this was contained in information you relied on, isn’t that correct?
MILLER: Not true.
BOIES: Where are the things that you relied upon?
MILLER: Human Rights Campaign.
BOIES: Show me.
MILLER: I’m trying to remember. Maybe it was NGLTF. It should be in the report. Paragraphs 99 of the report. I was going through the HRC website and there’s a link to laws and elections and that’s where I found the information about discrimination as well as adoption rights. There was some confusion because HRC map has different colors for different rights.

Oh that’s precious!! He was confused by the graphic design.

This feels like when you stayed out past your curfew and then your mom would interrogate you about your story and you had to try to stay calm and not get mixed up. “Um, I was with… Jenna! And Tracy was there!” Uh huh, sure.

BOIES: Did you ever use the term LGBT in any of your writings or in your deposition?
MILLER: I don’t recall.
BOIES: You refer to DADT. Gays and lesbians are still being discharged from the military?
MILLER: Yes, I think it’s less than it was.

Yeah? Does he? THINK SO?

(In actuality, it’s fluctuated from year to year. For instance, 668 were discharged in 2004, then 742 in 2005, then 623 in 2006. I found that out in 30 seconds by using Wikipedia. Maybe I can be an expert witness when I grow up!) Astoundingly, Miller seems to be aware that DOMA is still in effect, and admits that he “would guess that the majority of the LGBT community would like that repealed.” Finger on the pulse, that one. Is anyone else tired of hearing Kenneth Miller talk? Would anyone like to hear hot Canadian lesbians with cute haircuts sing about how much they hate Proposition 8 instead? WELL OK THEN.

Does Kenneth Miller know there are lesbians in Canada? I vote no. I mean, he doesn’t know that any forms of discrimination exist other than DADT, so…

BOIES: Any examples of discrimination against gays and lesbians in modern period?
MILLER: Military.
BOIES: Any others?
MILLER: Private situations about which I cannot opine, but only official discrimination of which I can think is DADT.

Wait – wait for it, you guys, he’s putting his thinking cap on –

BOIES: Are you aware of any official discrimination against gays and lesbians in this country today other than DADT policy?
MILLER: (Thinking) I’m trying to think of other laws that are official…policies that discriminate on that basis. One thing you are looking at would be DOMA policy.
BOIES: There you go!
MILLER: That’s what you are getting at. The DOMA policy is a differentiation of the treatment between gays and lesbians.

“A witness for the defendant just said under oath that DOMA is official discrimination against gays and lesbians. What does that mean about Prop 8?”

I almost just stood up and applauded. It’s like he’s finally potty-trained. Boies is on fire, y’all. For real. Not only does Miller sound like, I dunno, an idiot, but a witness for the defendant just said under oath that DOMA is official discrimination against gays and lesbians. What does that mean about Prop 8? Now we’re talking about voter initiatives, which Miller is supposed to be an expert on – that may in fact in true, but also he wrote in 2004 that voter initiatives “make compromise less necessary,” and “lead to polarization.”

Neither of those really sound like good things? In another article he wrote himself, Miller said that it’s ironic how “direct democracy can be less democratic than representative democracy because it violates norms of… transparency, compromise…” Part of me almost thinks Miller should have been our witness, except not, because he still would have been stupid. Miller is trying to defend the entire concept of voter initiatives; he says that legislative solutions do not always provide opportunities for “informed deliberation, consensus building and compromise.”

Apparently voter initiatives are supposed to provide this instead – you can pull back on a voter initiative before it becomes a constitutional amendment and work with everyone involved on the language so that it’s fair – so Boies asks him when the last time was that such a thing happened in California. A pretty reasonable question for an expert on voter initiatives and Californian politics, no?

BOIES: When was the last time?
MILLER: I guess…
BOIES: I’m not asking you to guess. I’m asking you to tell me the last time.
MILLER: Many times it’sbeen  pulled back.
BOIES: When was last time in CA that signatures were gathered and then proponents pulled back to make a compromise?
MILLER: It was discussed in the 2005 special election, but it did not happen.
BOIES: Give me the last time it happened in California?
MILLER: I can give you example in Colorado.
BOIES: We’re talking about California. You wanted to talk about California.
THOMPSON: Objection, He’s badgering the witness.
JUDGE WALKER: Overruled. This is cross-examination.
BOIES: Good God man!
MILLER: I don’t know.

And to top it off, here is a nugget of Miller’s own wisdom on voter initiatives from an article he himself wrote yet again: “In sum it is ironic that initiative process is considered purer democracy …when it violates democratic opportunities and procedural guarantees.” We talk about the process of banning same-sex marriage in other states – about 30 states have such bans, and 10 of those were voted on by initiative. After some confusion in which Miller cannot tell the difference between Arizona and Colorado (truth), we agree that all 10 of those voter initiatives were lost by the gay side. And then THIS HAPPENS:

BOIES: Do you agree that discrimination is on its face with Prop. 8?
MILLER: No. It defines marriage as between a man and awoman.
BOIES: You’ve said that Prop 8 treats gays and lesbians differently. As a political scientist, is it discrimination?
MILLER: Differently, but not necessarily in the law.
BOIES: Not as lawyer, but as political scientist, is there discrimination here?
MILLER: It akes a distinction between people; so that under that definition is it discrimination.

Y’all, he just said it. He just said “Prop 8 is discriminatory,” which is pretty much what this trial is on. Are you getting this? He is a defense witness. How is this happening? You guys, some of the stuff this guy says does not even make sense to me. Like, as words. Like this:

BOIES: Kane and Estridge say that proponents say that Prop. 8 required that schools teach that same-sex marriage is equal to hetero marriage, which was false. That difference probably passed Prop. 8. Do you agree?
MILLER: I see the sentence.

Is he a f*cking Na’vi? Is he going to plug his USB tail into the mother tree to figure out the answers to these questions? “I see the sentence?” What the f*ck does that mean? Okay, apparently what he meant is this:

MILLER: Yes, I do have an opinion. There is a basis with respect to the curricular consequences of Prop. 8. There is a basis so I disagree with that. With respect to the second clause, with regard to the message’s impact on the outcome of the election, I don’t know.

Did that make any more sense than the first one? Am I going crazy? No, apparently Boies feels the same way, he is trying to get him to clarify. I think Miller just said something vague that maybe meant “Yes, that message was in the Prop 8 ad campaign.”

BOIES: Second, re: did this have a decisive difference, no opinion?
MILLER: I can’t say. If they said “definitely made a difference,” I would say “I disagree.” If “possibly,” that might be true. If they said “no difference,” I would have no opinion.

If they said “What is wrong with you, the words that come out of your mouth don’t mean anything,” you would say… we are done for the day!

Judge Walker says that it’s getting warm in here and the landlord shuts off the ventilation at 5 pm (srsly, that’s really what he said) and so Boies has agreed to continue this tomorrow.

Do you know what that means? That means that America gets to wake up to more of this. That is both terrible and awesome; I feel like this is like watching a Ben Stiller movie, where I laugh but also feel deeply pained inside for the person on the screen. [Riese sidenote: I walked out of Meet the Parents, that’s how much it f*cking hurt.]

I bet there is not enough Morphine in California to get Miller to sleep tonight. Meanwhile, we will lay in our beds with our hot girlfriends that we’re not married to (unless we live in MA or VT or CT or Iowa or wherever) and be excited, but also a little scared because there are rumors that Prop 8 is just pulling all this shit so they can try to call a mistrial or something, because seriously how could real human people with brains do all this? Does anyone have feelings on this they need to share? Do you want to gay marry those two Canadian ladies but are sad you can’t because they’re already gay married to each other? Wheeeeeeeee! Goodnight!

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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." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. “Let’s just say that sexual attraction is the definition. Pedophiles would have to be allowed to marry. Mothers and sons. Man who wanted to marry a horse. Any combination would have to be allowed.”

    So bothered by this. I am glad it’s 6:00pm where I live because it means I’ve been drinking for 2 hours now and that is the only reason I am not yelling at my computer.

    Because who said we’re trying to make sexual attraction the definition. What a troubling and limited view of sexuality. Like, in terms of raw sexual attraction, aren’t most people bisexual anyway? Maybe I am the only one that thinks that. But come on. I may want to have sex with Brad Pitt and Bruce Springsteen and the really beautiful guy who sat next to me in the restaurant I was in last night, but I don’t want to marry any of them. I want to marry Angelina and the super cute girl the beautiful guy was with.

    And most pedophiles self-identify as heterosexuals. So there is that.

    Also, even Tony Soprano who loved his horse more than most people love their horses did not want to marry his horse. If he didn’t want to than no one would want to. And that is because IT MAKES NO SENSE. Where did these people go to school? Who are their parents? So much craziness. I am with you on that being hard to get over.

    This was great. These are always great. THANK YOU so much Rachel!

  2. 2 pig tails are fine, but one? No way… weird. I also HATE that we keep hearing the argument of “oh hey, a few things have happened to the gay community that don’t totally suck and there are a couple of people who don’t want to burn you at the stake so clearly we’re all good and you should be satisfied with what you get because obviously you’re on top of the world”. Um… ok? Gah. It’s like they’re going hey… remember, we let you pee in a bucket… you didn’t think we were actually going to let you pee AND get to eat today did you? No, sorry, one necessity is enough. I DON’T UNDERSTAND THIS AT ALL. Grrr. How does doing the right thing a couple of times provide an excuse to totally want to screw us over this time? I mean… is this a legit legal argument? I understand the concept of special rights but clearly if it isn’t considered a special right for heterosexuals, then it shouldn’t be for us homos right? This argument just seems so ridiculous to me that I am confused. I want to be happy that they sound stupid, but I’m afraid to get my hopes up in the case that they are pulling some lame rabbit out of their asses/hand is quicker than the brain/you just got Punk’d PART DEUX & we are going to get caught up in a loophole or something.

  3. I’m obviously preaching to the… glee club… but I still feel the need to share my feelings. They go a bit like this: OMFG!!!!! There should be a GIGANTIC banner in every court that reminds people that we are talking about CONSENTING *HUMAN* ADULTS. It’s really, really, really simple.

    Also, “I bet an intern had to take care of that”: classic.

    • AAAAND, if the mormons couldn’t make polygamy all the rage back then why would you be so scared of it making a come back now?

      While I personally don’t support polygamy, incest or marrying your horse for that matter, I feel that what these arguments actually show is how diverse we all are and how the heteronormative doesn’t fit us all. And of course, that’s the scary part for them.

  4. 3 things:

    1) I would buy a daily desk calendar of Autostraddle’s photoshop skillz and laugh EVERY DAY.

    2) I really want to hug Boies. I think he’s fantastic.

    3) How the fuck can these people win when they have no clue what they’re talking about??

  5. Did he actually say “good god man!”? Cause I love him if he did.

    Also, he’s confused by the HRC graphic!? He only has to deal with this for the few months it took to “prepare” for this trial. This is our life! Trying to keep up with where I can get married, which water fountain I can drink from, where I can hold my GF’s hand without fear of reprisal. In this particular county of this particular state do I have a right to develop an ulcer waiting for test results by her bedside or in the waiting room with all the other “friends”? Does this belt go with these shoes? THAT’S CONFUSING.

  6. “Is he a f*cking Na’vi?” Haha brilliant!
    Its a shame this isn’t being broadcast on youtube because I’m pretty sure Boies totally decimating this guy would make awesome tv, like maybe as good as the kickass bits of the West Wing.

    • after i got over being sad that this isn’t being broadcast on youtube, i realized that it’s probably a good thing, because otherwise i’d be up until the wee hours watching it every night, as opposed to the hour or so i spend with it now. but how amazing would it be to watch rachel maddow comment on video clips each night?? i would die.

  7. I believe that anything that can give consent should be allowed to get married. If horses are suddenly able to give consent, and aren’t involved in an abusive relationship, marry away. Wedding rings wouldn’t work, but some sort of special horse shoe could probably be arranged. If a lady wants to marry three female horses and all four of them are happy together and consenting to the situation, I’ll be their wedding photographer.

  8. I don’t even know what to say. I can’t believe this guy. I mean, is he colorblind? Is that why it was so difficult? I don’t see anything challenging about that graphic.

    Men wanting to marry horses? Really? Sometimes when I read these recaps I feel like its one big joke America is pulling on us because it is so ridiculous and cannot possibly be real. But then I remember that it is and its not so funny anymore. (Minus the photoshopped graphics, those are hilarious).

  9. I once saw the beginning of this one documentary where people were in love with their animals like srsly in love with them but I guess that’s a trial we may see 80 years from now…can’t wait, or wait, yes I can.

    Also, I hope as well that this whole mistrial thing is really just a rumor. After the Tam (yes, “the” because he was more of a disaster than a human being in my eyes) I really thought theses people would step up their game. I mean, glad to see they didn’t but still. I guess I see the sentence.

  10. wow, i really need to catch up on reading these- they are great! also, someone please let tinkerbell smoke the ganj already.

    • don’t forget about the emus.

      also i thought the other side would put up a bigger fight than this? i mean, i know they’re team totally wrong, but it’s like they put little to no effort in finding their defence. i would at least think they’d find someone who can answer questions properly.

  11. “Oh that’s precious!! He was confused by the graphic design.”

    i think he got confused by the chart when it wasn’t giving him the “gays are so powerful” data he wanted.

    maybe if the design had symbols of sodomy etc (scissors) to connote the GAYS OF POWER areas he would have gotten the concept? doubtful.

  12. If they said “What is wrong with you, the words that come out of your mouth don’t mean anything,” you would say… we are done for the day!

    This led to some people wondering why I was laughing class

  13. Thank you for this! It’s hard to stay angry at all the awfulness of it when i’m laughing so hard. :)

  14. “Even when we do get to his ‘area of expertise,’ Miller is just not really bringing his A game.”

    The thing is…I think that was his A game. Scanning the entirety of the academic world, he was the best they could find. Which is, perhaps, indicative of the lack of credible arguments in opposition to marriage equality.

  15. ‘Is he a f*cking Na’vi? Is he going to plug his USB tail into the mother tree to figure out the answers to these questions? “I see the sentence?” What the f*ck does that mean? Okay, apparently what he meant is this’

    i seriously just spit out what i was drinking when i read that. Hopefully no liquid damage.

    I am so thankful for these recaps the humor is great and the desire to be up to date on prop 8 is only helped by this.

  16. It’s times like these I really wonder if we could actually win this. Not just this round, which I’m already 99% confident about because Walker seems like he’s got his head on straight, but the SCOTUS too. I mean, I know RATS is pretty conservative and happy to uphold anti-gay discrimination and Kennedy is not much better, but even they won’t be able to ignore just how shoddy the case for Prop 8 is being revealed as, right? There’s having a conservative bias to your rulings and then there’s… whatever crazy mental pretzel contortions it would take to pretend that the h8ers have a leg to stand on here. I don’t think any of the SCOTUS are limber enough for those kinds of gymnastics. Right? Any smart, hot lawyers out there want to talk me down before I get my hopes up too high?

  17. As a side note, a couple months ago I color-corrected that Wikipedia map you linked to, just for the sort of dumb people who can’t understand it. (admittedly, it was a little haphazard.) It’s now nice and red/blue.

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