Consider government-sanctioned or court-mandated same-sex marriage -- somewhere, at some point -- a virtual certainty. For the Massachusetts State Supreme Court recently advised its legislature that anything short of same-sex marriage constitutes a violation of the equal protection clause of its constitution.
In San Francisco, the newly elected mayor, Gavin Newsom, advised local authorities to hand out same-sex marriage certificates, despite a voter-passed initiative defining marriage as between a man and a woman. Chicago Mayor Richard Daley also publicly supports same-sex marriage, despite an Illinois law defining marriage as between a man and a woman. Daley supports same-sex marriage, because "they love each other just as much as anyone else. . . . Marriage has been undermined by divorce, so don't tell me about marriage. Don't blame the gay and lesbian, transgender and transsexual community."
Now follow the jumping politicians.
For pols up for re-election, they see this issue as a political hot potato dropped right between their legs. President Bush initially said, "I have watched carefully what's happening in San Francisco, where licenses were being issued, even though the law states otherwise. I have consistently stated that I'll support law to protect marriage between a man and a woman.
Obviously these events are influencing my decision. . . . I am watching very carefully . . . " Finally, President Bush picked up his bat and swung. He said, "After more than two centuries of American jurisprudence and millennia of human experience, a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization. Their action has created confusion on an issue that requires clarity. . . . If we are to prevent the meaning of marriage from being changed forever, our nation must enact a constitutional amendment to protect marriage in America."
A recent Time/CNN poll shows that 62 percent of all Americans oppose same-sex marriage, as well as 52 percent of Democrats. Former President Bill Clinton understood this when he signed, in the middle of the night, the Defense of Marriage Act, which allows a state to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., arguably the body's most ardent liberal, opposed the Defense of Marriage Act, considering the matter the province of the states, not the fed. Imagine, Sen. Boxer, who rarely sees a social program she cannot support, morphing into a states' righter! And, all of the major Democratic presidential candidates oppose same-sex marriage, although they support "civil unions" or "domestic partnerships."