I heard on Dennis Miller last evening that a group of homosexual activists spit in the face of an 80 year old grandmother for defying their crusade. I think she was a Mormon, but it hardly matters. This radicalism has gone too far.
It is surprising how useful reading Jonah Goldberg's 'Liberal Fascism' has been in understanding matters of conflict between Left and Right. Following his example I am going to reduce political complexity that I have previously used from three schools to two. I had previously talked about Liberals, Progressives and Conservatives. I will now talk only about Progressives and Conservatives. Primarily this is about who has the upper hand in the intellectual direction of the parties. Progressives, encompassing Pragmatists, the followers of William James are the leaders of the Left. Barack Obama is squarely there. Conservatives took over the Right with Ronald Reagan in 1980 who branched off from Goldwater. The Rockefeller Republicans are essentially dead.
I will also however talk more about Classic Liberalism as the home of Conservatism whose values we may all be trying to get back to - depending.
At any rate, I have suffered through a great deal of bickering about who's a bigot in all of this noise about Proposition Eight, which is rather odd considering that California merely joins the other 41 states in outrightly banning gay marriage. What nobody has done in any of these flamewars is detail any of the 'rights' that are supposedly being denied gay couples. It has, in the most logical case, boiled down to 'the right to call themselves married', with no reference to what exactly being married gives straights other than social recognition. I think that the social recognition is an important part of the cast that advocates for gay marriage should emphasize, but that they should not pursue this matter in the scortched earth manner they have done, and thus they are destroying their own case by claiming all of their opponents are bigots. Here is the applicable case law that nobody has been referring to. Actually very easy to find if anyone cared.
An honest evaluation of all of the differences will recognize that 99% of these differences are benefits not rights, and a case that any of these benefits are Constitutional rights is easily debatable. This is the distinction I make for inheritance of property - however I don't see how any gay partner's unwillingness or inability to execute a proper will is a responsibility of the state. Probate can be ugly for anyone.
A second look at the substantial list of benefits would show that almost none of them existed before the New Deal.
It is to be expected that Progressives will expand upon Rousseau's concept of the General Will as the proper driver of state activity. Similarly we can expect Progressives to demonize their opposition, especially conservatives who wish to limit the scope and influence of state granted status and definitions of social institutions.
This is a sterling example of my tried and true definition of the difference between left and right. The left wants to use the power of the state to make up for the dysfunctions of their families. The right wants to use the strength of their families to protect against the excess and abuses of the state. In that regard it makes perfect sense that advocates for gay marriage cannot and do not expect the benefits of gay and lesbian relationships to meaningful or fulfilling without the assistance and support of the all encompassing nanny state.
Everything in the State. Nothing outside of the State. Nothing against the State. Establish the General Will through the apparatus of the State.
That's Mussolini by the way.