QUEERTY REPORTS: You judge a man by the company he keeps. Particularly when they’re gunning for the White House. We’re speaking, of course, about John McCain, the Republican candidate whose two references today speak volumes about the candidate.
The most recent concerned John Hagee, the pastor McCain courted and who also happens to believe God sent Hurricane Katrina to punish gay-loving New Orleans. Wacko, right. The other mention came via professor Christopher Latimer, who reminded readers that while McCain may be relatively liberal on the gays when compared to his party peers, his political appointees may not be like-minded.
We were intrigued by this point, so we took a look at McCain’s supporters and narrowed in on the Attorney Generals who have backed his presidency. And we don’t like what we found.
The most familiar name on the list – which is twelve deep at the moment- is definitely Mike Bowers, the Georgian Attorney General who found himself in court defending the state’s sodomy laws. The case, Hardwick v. Bowers, concerned a man named Michael Hardwick who had been arrested for sodomy after police officers unlawfully entered his home and found him in bed with another man. A lower court initially ruled in Hardwick’s favor, saying the laws were a violation of privacy. That’s when Bowers entered the picture:
…Bowers asked the Supreme Court to intervene, arguing that ancient scholars “considered even consensual sodomy to be as heinous as the crime of rape” (Later, in 1997, while running for governor, Bowers was forced to admit that he had been cheating on his wife for 15 years. His mistress told the world, “As far as sodomy is concerned, Mike Bowers is a hypocrite.”)
Bowers ended up losing his gubernatorial race. Poor thing.
Georgia’s Supreme Court ended up ruling Bowers favor and Hardwick v. Bowers would remain on the books until being overturned the Supreme Court’s decision during 2003’s Lawrence v. Texas. South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster, also a McCain supporter, decried the Lawrence verdict, which invalidated the States’ sodomy laws. McMaster worried the decision would infringe on his state’s right to regulate “detrimental” behavior:
Texas, just like South Carolina, has the fundamental right and authority as a sovereign state to enact laws prohibiting behavior deemed inappropriate and detrimental to the state.
The citizens of our state, through their elected representatives, have seen fit to have our law against sodomy in effect since the Lord Proprietors governed South Carolina.
Yet another historically dated argument. We’re sensing a pattern here.
Moving out of the bedroom and into the nursery, Indiana’s Steve Carter urged the Hoosier State’s Supreme Court to intervene in a case concerning a gay couple who wanted to adopt a baby girl. A lower court had ruled that the women could, in fact, raise the child. And, like Bowers and Hardwick, the Carter sent the case to the Supreme Court.
There has been conflict among trial and appellate judges about whether two people can jointly adopt a child when they are not married. Given such a division thus far among five judges at two different levels of our courts; and given the fact that the state Supreme Court has not yet had the opportunity to interpret the most recent relevant enactment of the legislature, I find it proper to invite the High Court to be heard in this matter.
Some took Carter’s “concern” to be an attempt to detract gay rights. At the least, it indicates a severely short-sighted view of family. And we know where that comes from…