|Reviews for On the Eve of May 17th|
| m9999 chapter 1 . 4/23/2006
I don't know whether you still read your reviews but I'll review anyway.
Although I believe the root of the problem concerning the 'will of the people' versus 'will of the executive/lesgilature/judiciary' stems from the structure of the American government itself as opposed this instance of the court allegedly 'overstepping' its role.
I'll have to be more general than specific because I am not an American and I don't have a plethora of knowledge about your Constitution.
I would be hesistant to say that the court overstepped its role in general. After all, the court is there to determine whether a law is constitutionally valid or not, and that is what it appears to have done here.
The Constitution needs to endure through time, and it's arguable that the framers intended that a term such as 'marriage' should apply to whatever facts and circumstances each future generation thinks it emcompasses.
'Marriage' can be defined as an intimate union between human beings. The court isn't and hasn't changed the meaning of 'marriage'; it's still an intimate union between human beings, it's just that the definition also covers same-sex couples now.
The concept is still the same, however the content has changed to reflect the factual circumstances of today's generation.
The court would have overstepped its role had it changed the connotation of marriage, but it didn't. Same-sex couples come under the denotation of 'marriage'.
To me you seem to be contending that the court overstepped its role because its interpretation of 'marriage' was allegedly based upon pragmatic/policy consideration.
Now I would have to thoroughly read through the judgements of the cases you used to support your contention, but I am most likely to ex facie disagree with you on this particular point.
This is because, as aforementioned, I am inclined to think that the courts (in general) considered and weighed up the natural meaning of 'marriage', the framers' objective intention, and the current context to interpret 'marriage' in answering the questioning of whether the challenged law was constitutionally valid or not.
I guess one might say that the courts are within power to 'expand' (and I use this word with extreme caution) the marriage power to cover intimate same-sex unions so long as it is a denotation of 'marriage', and doesn't change the connotation of 'marriage'.
So if you feel that the courts have overstepped its role and have ignored your rights because of this, and in order to preserve the will of the people, the nation should disallow such statutory interpretation, then laws on things like plastic money and the airforce should all be struck down too.
After all, without a process of interpretation that utilizes connotations and denotations, the US cannot legislate on the airforce because the 'airforce' isn't covered by the natural meaning of 'land and naval defences'.
Furthermore, if at some point in time the American people get sick of losing their money because they have accidently put their notes through the wash, and decide to coin plastic money intead, this would be constitutionally invalid.
Why? Simply (or maybe not so simply) because the natural meaning of 'money' doesn't cover plastic money. Plastic money like many other things were unforeseen to the framers at the time they drafted the Constitution.
So if anything the courts operated within their power. To prohibit the court against such statutory interpretation that allegedly led to it overstepping its role and striking down a prohibition on same-sex marriages, would in effect render the Constitution useless.
It would merely be a scrap of paper that can't apply to today and succeeding generations.
Even though I generally disagree with you, I commend you for highlighting an interesting aspect on this whole same-sex marriage debate.
| ValkyrieRavenfeather chapter 1 . 9/22/2005
There is nothing wrong with gay marriage. Gays SHOULD have rights. You are a moron. This essay was incredibly hard-to-read as well.
| spoofed chapter 1 . 12/18/2004
Glad to see someone finally going in a different direction with these essays. In my oppinion, same-sex marriages shouldn't be allowed, so I agree with you on that. It's encouraging to here this oppinion comming from MA. I get so tired of people Bush-bashing and fighting over politics 24/7 without even understanding our legal system or the views of the opposing side. I encourage you to be open-minded when debating with "liberals," but to still keep your oppinions (if you aren't already, that is). It's nice to see a calmly written essay where our nation's leaders aren't insulted every five lines, something I think gives people a bad immage of American's devotion to their country. It's not just religious people who share this oppinion, and just because we think that doesn't mean we're single minded. But anyways, good job. I've rambled too long. :)
| Matryoshka chapter 1 . 11/27/2004
Hello, I liked reading your essay-for once, not something used just to majorly insult people. The format was great-strong arguments and support. The points you brought up were very interesting, as I haven't seen it quite in that light before. I agree that the people should be more powerful than the courts. However, throughout history, it's been shown that we can't always have that. For example, as one reviewer pointed out, Brown v. Board of Education had to be decided by a court since most people didn't think blacks should have equal rights. Isn't this the same situation? A minority decided that blacks and whites should be equal. Here, you say, "To the rest of us it was a small minority forcing their beliefs and way of life on the rest of us." But when perhaps, in a way, Brown v. Board of Education was FORCING blacks and whites to go to school together, you're not being forced to become a homosexual. Nothing is going to change at all really-except you might see a few "marriages" of the same sex. Is that so bad? It's not like the whole country is going to be gay.I agree with you, it can always happen that a small group of people will try to take control and change stuff without the support of the people. In this case, however, no one is going to control you-in fact, little will change if gay people are allowed to marry each other. Sorry for sounding so critical...I'd appreciate it, if you have time, would e-mail me if you have any replies or comments or whatever.
| me chapter 1 . 8/10/2004
are you some kind of Nazi or k punk? GAY MARRIAGE WAS NEVER ILLEGAL. It says in the constitution that all men and women have the rights to marry, it never says anything about denying the rights of others. you think that people having rights are 'forcing their lifestyle onto us' well you know what, black people have rights and it doesn't force us to be black. you think that just because you're christian you are right and no one will ever doubt you but they WILL and you WILL fail in your plan to deny the rights of others who go against your precious little book. Some places made the mistake of giving the church too much power and we'll NEVER make that mistake again so take your christians-are-the-best attitude back to the dark ages where they're useful enough and maybe while you're there you can follow your dreams and burn a few witches
| txredhedxt chapter 1 . 6/25/2004
Pretty good essay...I liked most of your ideas and arguments...but Gays do have an agenda, otherwise, they'd just accept the whole 'civil union' thing as about as good as it's gonna get and deal. The fact is, most people in the U.S. and I'm sure in M.A. (i can't really speak for them as I'm from Texas) aren't gay and don't agree with the legalization of gay marriage. And to say that it would have no affect on my life is farcical! For the government, well, judicial branch in this case, to rule that marriage can be between people of the same sex totally impedes upon my 'freedom of religion' in that it is telling me that I can't believe the Bible and that no matter what I believe, the stupid libral judges can tell me I'm wrong and impose other beliefs just because they want to. The first amendment states 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;'...this means the government can in no way hindermy right to believe what I want, and if they say that gays can get married and are refrencing my or any other religion, then they are simply being unlawful. Furthermore, gays do have the same rights as heterosexuals. Any man, gay or not, has the right to marry a person of the opposit sex. It's not my or the governments problem if they don't want to exercise this right. And the same goes for any girl. They have the right to marry a guy. And just because wynona steals, it doesn't mean that It makes it right if I do. So it doesn't matter how many people do it all the time for different reasons. It is still wrong whethter you are the first or the thousandth person to do it. But it was a well written essay, and I think I'm gonna go write one about all this and expand on my ideas, so watch for that...:)
| Corosive Frog chapter 1 . 5/28/2004
With all due respect, Oil lobbying that want to pollute Alaska and still rob consumers at the pumps and tobacco companies tha tpoison us is far more serious to me that "gay lobbying". that's where we should out some energy instead of consenting adults's bedrooms.
What two consenting adults do in private is no one else's business.
| ChristianGeekGuy chapter 1 . 5/28/2004
You bring up an important and interesting point that has been largely ignored.
g21lto's points are important to note. However, while it may be within the court's rights to rule on this issue, it was not within the rights of the mayors and judges who began allowing gay marriages in the first place, and for the judical branch to allow it was incorrect.
The whole idea is that 1/3 of the government is trying to decide the issue by itself. And if that is allowed, perhaps some changes need to be implimented. Checks and balances are very important.
I also agree that lobbying is a severe problem in American politics. It essentially gives a large voice to small groups, and they are overrepresented, while other voices are ignored.
And the next person who brings up separation of church and state gets a punch in the eye. NOWHERE in the constitution of the US does it require separation of church and state. This idea was taken from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson, and not any valid legal document. The founding fathers were mostly very religious people, and this country and its laws were based on Christian principles. Pure fact, take it how you will.
Marriage is a religious ceremony, and I think religion should be involved in it. If gays want civil unions, that's a matter of government, and they can do what they will.
| g21lto chapter 1 . 5/25/2004
"In order to legalize something a law must be passed and to do that it must be brought to the attention of the legislature or voted on by the public."
That is actually a historical inaccuracy. Often when something has been legalized, it has been through the striking down of a law by the courts which had previously made the act illegal. Examples being interracial marriage (Loving v. Virginia), abortion (Roe v. Wade), and contraceptive use (Griswold v. Connecticut). This is a traditional role of the courts in American government.
"A liberal state supreme court...in a huge overstep of their boundaries..."
My understanding of the Massachusetts court's decision is that they were confronted with the legality of denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In this case, it is not an "overstep of their bounds" to rule on whether this is constitutional under the Massachusetts constitution. This is exactly what they did, and found that there was no basis in the constitution for denying the right of marriage to couples based on gender. This was of course going against religious and social tradition, which makes it look like a more radical step than it is. However, the court was ruling on constitutionality, not traditionality.
"For years we have been told that holding personal opinions that might be anti-gay is homophobic and comparable to being members of the Ku Klux Klan."
I'll agree that political correctness can go too far. As a bi woman myself, I have no problem with people who have a religious problem against gays. All I care about is whether or not you're seeking to limit my rights in the public sphere. And common courtesy goes a long way - when you're around gay people in a social setting, it's pretty rude to make anti-gay comments. Still, I don't think it should be considered bad to have a religious problem with homosexuality, as many people honestly do.
"Any minority with an agenda that is not favored by the majority of Americans can now influence politics and society by working with the courts instead of the legislature."
I disagree with this. The cause of gay marriage is a cause that can benefit or hurt only the gay community - either way, heterosexuals will still have marriage rights. The only danger is in the idea of gay marriage being "forced" onto an unwilling populace, much as the existence of interracial marriages has been forced on to us. If you don't believe in it, don't participate, but the fact remains that the government cannot deny rights given to most of the population to a minority simply based on religious reasons. In a society that separates church and state, there must be a more substantial reason, which I have not seen given.
So I don't believe that this decision means any minority group will be able to force their agenda through the courts. Only those whose "agendas" will harm no one and will extend rights to all.
"There is a right way to do things in this country...That way includes the voices of the people and the work of the legislature and executive branches."
I think you're downplaying the role of the judicial in policy-making. Sadly enough, it is the judicial branch, instead of the will of the people, that has made the most advances toward giving us a free and equal society. If not for the much-denigrated judicial activism, blacks would still have few civil rights and many of the rights we have from the Bill of Rights - speech, protection from illegal search and seizure, right to counsel - would apply only to federal, not state, law, yielding a society much less just and much more open to tyranny over the individual citizen by the state.
| evilcourtney chapter 1 . 5/22/2004
I enjoyed reading your essay, it enlightened me to the way in which the gay rights groups have managed to push their campaign through. Not to say that I still don't support it, but I appreciate the information on the law passing.
Also thanks for your review on my small essay 'Bush vs sexuality'. I appreciate your feedback and thank you for sharing your opinion. After all, that's what everything here is posted for.
| TaraErin chapter 1 . 5/20/2004
"Hopefully the amendment will pass and this threat upon the system of checks and balances that this country rides on will be removed."
If the amendment is passed, it isn't going to change the fact that people can still mess with the legal system and do things in courts without informing the public. How on earth did you come to that conclusion?
"To the rest of us it was a small minority forcing their beliefs and way of life on the rest of us."
Gay couples are in no way trying to force their beliefs on you. If gay people are allowed to get married, it isn't going to have any affect on your life at all. They just want the same rights as heterosexuals.
You have a valid argument in talking about how different groups are getting around the legal system, but I do not feel that it was neccesary to focus on gays groups, because it makes it seem like they are the only ones doing it, when in actual fact, different people do it all the time for different things.
| Christina Miller chapter 1 . 5/19/2004
Bravo! I go to school in MA. Hats off to a fellow non-socialist citizen of the Commonwealth (actually, I don't live in MA, but I'm there every day). I could not agree with you more. Thomas Jefferson is rolling over in his grave right now. Those four judges set up an oligarchy and Mitt Romney should have sent them packing.
| warnthepenguins chapter 1 . 5/17/2004
Only a third of the settlers supported the American Revolution.
And Brown v. Board of Education could only have been decided in a court case-no way would a popular vote have given blacks equal rights.
| Admiral chapter 1 . 5/17/2004
Given that too many activists are all too willing to defy properly enacted laws anyway, (the gay marriage crusades that prompted talk of the amendment are perfect examples) a Protection of Marriage Amendment is probably a waste of time. The real problem isn't the gays who want to get married or the politicians that support them. It's the judges that do their bidding.
With that in mind, there's a better alternative. is circulating a petition for an amendment that would allow justices that go beyond their mandate and legislate from the bench to be impeached and removed from the court. With this threat hanging over their heads, justices like those on the Massachusettes court might be less inclined to base their decisions on the politically correct fad of the moment.
| James Jago chapter 1 . 5/17/2004
I don't suppose the civil rights activists of the sixties gave a damn about the proper proccedure either. Personally, if I was gay (I'm not) then I'd be doing the same, and citing those same cases.
You would do well to be suspicious of the 'popular backlash' you might have heard about in the media; pissed off 'concerned citizens' have a way of grabbing the headlines. The man on the street who isn't gay, Christian or both probably isn't that fussed. That's how it is this side of the Atlantic, where it's an equally hot topic.
It might be of interest to you that 'civil unions' have already been introduced in France; from what I can tell, it's civil marriage in all but name. The objections on religious grounds have been dealt with by ignoring them.