Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Judge Walker Does It

Seems like everybody on my Google News Feed wants to weigh in with the report that U. S. District Judge Vaughn Walker has held the California gay marriage ban unconstitutional--one is tempted to say "resoundingly unconstitutional," as in "we find the defendants incredibly guilty."

I guess I'm glad the case came out as it did (has so far) although I wish this one could have been settled right the first time by the voters.  I do think that supporters of gay marriage rather dropped the ball on the politics here, doing what liberals have so often done to their cost, i.e., take the black vote for granted (never, ever take the black vote for granted--a good rule of thumb in liberal politics).  I also persist in feeling that this is one of those issues that will sort itself out, is sorting itself out, over time.  No question but we've still whole bargeloads of ferocious naysayers on the issue of gay marriage who say no way, never--until it sinks in on them that it is their sib, their kid, who is on the line.  Remarkable how often the most ferocious hostility can dissolve under the constraint of personal association.  That's why even in quarters far more hostile to gay rights than California you find the opposition oddly muted.  Politicians can still demagogue it up but I think that on this issue the howls of range and resentment are becoming subtly but notably less shrill.

Meanwhile, supporters of free choice can admire a judge who shows what a principled liberalism really looks like (and if you want some flavor of how we came to get this ruling from a Ronald Reagan appointee, check the Wiki).  Supporters of popular sovereignty will have to console themselves with the thought that you can't win 'em all.  And maybe a good thing, too.

Update:  Cato get it, more or less.   And while Reagan did nominate Walker, the nomination fizzled.  It took Bush I to put him over the goal line.

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