Wednesday, June 26, 2013

SCOTUS Strikes Down DOMA

link

Holy crap!

I really can't believe the change in our national trajectory on this. This seems to me like genuine moral, legal and political progress.

I really do sympathize with the concerns of honest slow-change conservatives (as opposed to the weird "conservative" radicals that dominate American politics). Ideally, I think we'd have gone with civil unions first...but that may be an overabundance of caution with respect to something so many people think of as a fundamental right. And I recognize that I'm a weirdo here because I've never seen marriage as that big a deal. Also/therefore, I'd like to see civil unions available to heterosexuals, too...

But, anyway: this seems to me like a big win for reason and justice.

I do fear that it will energize the right...but that's a fear that attends lots of big wins for liberals. So I'll take that risk.

7 Comments:

Blogger The Mystic said...

What do you see as valuable in a distinction between marriage and civil unions? I'm interested.

1:53 PM  
Blogger Pete Mack said...

A few weeks back you had a longish post about the problem of postmodern "discourse" in feminism. One of the examples you gave was the uselessness of the word "mansplain". At the time I disagreed, but had no good counterexample. Please consider Rick Perry's response to Wendy Davis my belated counterexample.

12:45 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

M,

Well, marriage is a complicated institution that seems hard to extricate from its history, which is largely religious, and not too cool to women. Civil unions seem to me to be a nice, clean, secular slate. Some people (such as myself and JQ) that shy away from marriage would be much more receptive to civil unions. And the right should freak out a whole lot less about same-sex civil unions, one would think...

But we seem to be winning the marriage wars in spectacular fashion...so looks like I'm wrong...

6:13 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

PM,

I dunno, man. Perry is an ignorant (or, as we'd say back home: ignernt), condescending prick... But I don't see how that's tied to him being male and Davis being female. He's an ignorant, condescending prick even when he's talking to (liberal) males, or addressing a generically human audience... So...

And do we need also a sex-specific term for feminists who are ignorant, condescending pricks when they talk to men?

Because I'd be inclined to just stick with the non-sex-specific term 'ignorant condescending prick'...

It's not that I deny that there might be an identifiable phenomenon in question... But I sometimes deal with women who are vapid, and yet condescending to me, and yet I never think of this as being in any way sex-specific.

And the types of feminists in question seem to revel in hinting--but seldom saying outright--that all men are guilty of the thing in question, or that the thing in question is somehow characteristic of males, or limited to them.

Also, the term is used so often to really just mean "disagreeing with a feminist" that I have a hard time taking it seriously...

I'm not willing to die on this hill...and it may very well be that I'm letting myself get too annoyed at the loony fringe... But it's a pretty big/influential fringe...

6:27 AM  
Blogger The Mystic said...

I'm kind of surprised that you would care that the institution of marriage, historically, has had problems. I can hardly think of a type of institution which hasn't. Hell, our government used to endorse slavery. So, should we develop another institution largely (entirely?) equivalent with government and call it something else to avoid the history associated with the word "government"?

I'm not trying to be dumb, but I don't get it.

9:25 AM  
Blogger Pete Mack said...

Well, I am pretty sure that "prick" is also a sex-specific word. I think you meant "asshole." I even vetted it with a radical feminist, who agreed that asshole covered all bases, not like "prick" and "bitch".

12:22 PM  
Blogger The Mystic said...

Am I being left an exercise for the reader? I fear I'm failing.

8:25 AM  

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