Neal has a new blurble up on NPR. It's kinda wack because it sounds like it was cut and paste together. But I could see why a college professor would have to do so. I would expect that someone in his position is considerably smarter than his sound-sandwich makes him sound. Then again, it is an NPR sound-blurble. Nobody expects it to be scholarly material.
Still, it hurts my head to hear the term 'civil rights' bandied about so readily and often. So whenever I hear the term, I try to immediately think of Judge Johnson and all of the case law around race. This reminds me, much to my delight, of the wisdom of relying on 'activist judges' in making the case for civil liberty - that it was not all sit-ins and marches and shouting and throwing bricks that made the difference. That very fact, which is so often elided when we talk about 'The Struggle', is what give me comfort. The American system changed within the framework of the republic by demonstration in case after case that denial of civil rights to any fragment of its population was corrosive to liberty.
You would think that this real judicial example would be enough. So why does Mark Anthony Neal care whether or not 'the black community' supports the agenda for every sexual perversion to be considered equal? I don't know. The burble doesn't get that specific. But I have my suspicions. They are as they always have been, which is that we become accepting of the lifestyle of the sexual smorgasborg. It's a typical liberal overproduction. It's not about civil rights, it's about social power. I haven't followed this up, for one because the entire subject annoys me. But I'd bet a nickel that judges are, by and large perfectly happy to determine that within the scope of the Civil Rights laws of this country that discrimination against people because of their sexual proclivities is out of bounds. Or simply stated, all the freaks *have* all their rights. When they go to court, they win. I welcome any activist for the gay cause to prove me wrong. If you ask me, there *is* no equivalent of the Dred Scott or Plessy decisions as far as gays are concerned. Gay Americans are not legally oppressed, they are socially oppressed, and they can't stand it.
Legal oppression is not what this activism is all about. It is about appropriating the moral figleaf of the rhetoric of 'Civil Rights'. If there's anything made perfectly clear about Neal's burble, it is that everybody appropriates rhetoric and street tactics. So why not the lesbians, gays, transsexuals and transgenders? Who's stopping them? They already have. The thing they can't appropriate is Marriage, and the majority of Americans (this time) wisely has put its collective foot down.
Do we need a Constitutional Amendment sized foot in the ass of the politics of gay appropriation? I don't think so. I'm against using the Supreme Court for such matters. So I think Rove is just as off his nut for his suggestion to abuse the court system as the gay blades are for downplaying their equality in standing before it. But if this kind of sabre-rattling is what's necessary to get a rise out of bloggers such as myself, it's working.
How about this? Why don't we mandate that gays get a rainbow flag tatooed on their foreheads? That way we know and can properly adjust our gaydar. Then we can actually demonstrate our political correctness correctly. I mean if you're here and you're queer, why not let us all know, for real? On the other hand, why don't all gays just buy wedding rings and pretend that they're married anyway? Then we can actually demonstrate our respect for marriage correctly. You see? Either way there's a lie, and the lie is that Marriage is the same and LBGTT folks are all about the same values - something any halfway honest two minute conversation would disabuse.
I think the bottom line in any case is honesty and not symbolism and appropriation. We know some huge fragment of the population is gay and we know that any red blooded fraction of that fragment is ready willing and able to fight for what they rightly deserve in a free and open society. So let's just stop pretending that everybody is the same and that all these relationships are based on the same premises as Holy Matrimony. I say stand up in court for your rights, and stop bragging about your sexual exploits in the process. Nobody wants to hear it. Or if you must, then say somebody smacked you upside the head because you're a felcher, or that somebody refused to rent to you because you said you're a bottom boy on the application. But stop trying to get on board a movement whose motion has already moved. Write your own letter from a Birmingham jail.
Or maybe it is that you really have no new ideas whatsoever.