Reading David Boies’ op-ed against letting Prop 8 stand is a handy summary for anyone just joining the conversation about his and Ted Olson’s federal lawsuit challenging the law. But here’s one thing we were unaware of: Deep inside the legal arguments against discrimination stands some ridiculous claim that if you disallow gays from marrying, they’ll turn straight!
We’re not sure why Boies decided to include this note, but he did: “Moreover, there is no longer any credible contention that depriving gays and lesbians of basic rights will cause them to change their sexual orientation. Even if there was, the attempt would be constitutionally defective.”
Was this ever really part of the (legal) argument against same-sex marriage? Sure, ex-gays will profess about their ability to change sexual orientations, but when it comes to legal standpoints, this is quite possibly the first time we heard anyone as reasonable as Boies contend anyone has been arguing denying marriage rights can alter biology. And that it’s an argument worth debunking.
Or maybe we’re just that far out of the Bigotland loop we just can’t keep track of all the crazypants theories they come up with. After all, they do think we’re about to legalize human-sheep marriages.
Well if that really worked, wouldn’t we all be straight by now?
Like it or not, on the states level (at least in my state) every single LGBT issue is always met with opposition groups claiming that we can be cured so we shouldn’t be considered worthy of any other right than the right to leave our “sinful ways”.
Mr. Boies may have been responding to this point that he must demonstrate to judge Walker: “5
(3) whether sexual orientation can be
changed, and if so, whether gays and lesbians should be encouraged
to change it[.]”
Document 76, Page 7, in the Perry Vs. Schwarzenegger case.
The religious zealot defendants, in their defense argument, claim that proposition 8 does not violate the equal protection clause because we can marry the person of the opposite sex.
The bigots must be aware of proposition 8’s imminent death! If they are not, they are hoping for help from activist judges!
While there is no proof that one’s sexuality is ‘biological’, it is certainly strange to contend that preventing s/s marriage would cause us alter our sexuality. It’s true in some people’s case that if you have to marry at all , it might not matter whether you marry a male or female, since sex may not be as relivant if you plan to marry. But as far as changing one’s sexual interest, that would only be a consideration if you were attached to marriage as a fetish.
The Gay Numbers
It’s not strange if you think of sexual orientation as a matter of choice. This is why there can be no fundamental agreement with bigots. They are not motivated by what is the case. They are motivated by what they want to force us to be. So, they are conclusion in search of ways to justify itself. We can be ‘cured” thus all policies come out of that belief.
I live in Massachusetts and the strangest thing happened to me the day after the State Supreme court legalized same sex marriage. I went from a total boob and pooty-tang man, to a strictly cock and ass lover.
Umm… the argument has to be contested, even if it is not raised, in order to satisfy the current requirements for a suspect class under the equal protection clause of the 5th and 14th Amendments. One of the characteristics that the Court looks for in a class is that the class is defined by an immutable characteristic. In other words, to get heightened scrutiny from the Court, you can’t be able to change your status at will. So far the court has been unwilling to extend the application of heightened scrutiny to LGBT issues (although they do seem to provide a higher level of scrutiny than rational-basis) but if they could be convinced to do so, it would be a much easier case.
The contention that allowing gay marriage will convert heterosexual children into homosexual adults was a huge, implicit issue in California Prop 8 campaign. Many interviewees reported they were ready to vote no on Prop 8 UNTIL they saw the commercials suggesting homosexuality would be taught in schools. The campaign purposely invoked fear that children would “turn” gay and is what led so many to vote Yes on 8. The WCJ article is a public opinion piece, not a legal brief, so why is Queerty critisizing the article????? Kudos to Boies for articulating one of the real obsticles to obtaining marriage equality.
I think we need to step back and look at what Boies is saying here. Prohibition tried to stop people from drinking and it failed, as is the current drug war.
Laws against “sodomy” have attempted for millennia to stomp out homosexuality, and have failed. (This is so because human sexual diversity is an integral part of human nature–and part of our long-term survival strategy. It seems we have RECENTLY evolved into a species with distinct orientation classes and other “intersex” characteristics, clearly suggesting this has been brought on by humanity’s self-induced species pressure by repressing all non-procreative behaviors and relationships over the past 5,000 years to the point of ecological collapse!)
The intent of the laws that have criminalized consensual adult behavior between members of the same gender, along with laws limiting marriage to between members of opposite genders, HAVE intended to heterosexualize the society. It’s implicit.
I find it a MORE bitter pill to swallow, to watch the two people who destroyed this country and History by getting GWB SEE-lected in Bush v. Gore NOW stand up for what’s right in ending Gaypartheid. Then again, I suppose it’s fitting because the court is largely the same court that voted 5-4 to overturn sodomy laws in Lawrence v. Texas.
“some ridiculous claim that if you disallow gays from marrying, they’ll turn straight! . . . Was this ever really part of the (legal) argument against same-sex marriage?”
Actually, the point of all anti-gay legislation is to coerce people into abstaining from homosexual acts of intimacy, from identifying as homosexual, and from being open about either.
Remember, the foundation of anti-gay ideaology is that homosexuality is not an intrinsic trait, but a chosen activity. Homophobes do not believe that gay men and lesbians are genuinely unattracted to the opposite sex, they believe that we chose to engage in ‘homosexual acts’ in opposition to our natural desires, that we “deep down” are as repulsed by same-sex intimacy as they claim to be. In their eyes, we are simply obstinately insisting on doing something disgusting because society doesn’t punish it enough to make us stop.
Of course, the buried message is that folks who believe the above ideas are repressing their own sexuality, and if they were not coerced by church and country, they’d be having gay sex too.
So, yes, homophobes really do believe that by criminalizing same-sex marriage, depriving us of basic civil rights, by beating and killing us, by vilifying us in public, by re-criminalizing same-sex sexual intimacy, they can make all homosexuals chose to be heterosexuals. Homophobes believe that homosexuality is chosen – they argue that point consistently despite all evidence, and from the foundation, believe that societal pressure in the form of punitive, coercive laws, can make GLBTQ people chose to be heterosexual.
Where have you been for the last 40 years, to not know this?
If you are heterosexual and think one or two same sex experiences would turn you gay you are NOT heterosexual.
In my opinion, the best course of action for them would be to point to Loving v. Virignia as a precedent in their case. If they rule against it, then they would have to address why they ruled against a previous case. I cannot see any reason how they would explain the difference outside of sheer homophobia/ “Gays r gross”.
“Reading David Boies’ op-ed against letting Prop 8 stand is a handy summary for anyone just joining the conversation about he and Ted Olson’s federal lawsuit challenging the law.”
Whoever wrote/edited this copy needs a refresher course in correct English. The quoted sentence should read: “. . . about HIS and Ted Olson’s federal lawsuit . . . .”
One argument that supporters of current marriage laws have made is that gay people can get married, they just have to marry people of the opposite sex. Both males and females are allowed to marry (females and males, respectively) thus there is no discrimination based on gender or sex.
It’s very similar to the argument made to support bans on interracial marriage. The argument was that since they prevented WHITE people from marrying Black people AND Black people from marrying white people then those laws did not discriminate on the basis of race.
What the argument fails to realize is that the ban on allowing interracial marriage and same-sex marriage is really attempting to keep the races separate and (keep the genders separate) and by strengthening the difference between the races (and genders) those laws are supporting the notion that one particular race or gender is superior to the other.
Joe Mustich, Justice of the Peace
Kudos to Attorneys Boies and Olson.
Joe Mustich, JP, Washington, Connecticut USA
I just officiated for an attorney at Boies, Schiller and Flexner, who came to CT to wed with her spouse, and they brought their families along to celebrate with them.
And now their marriage is recognized in DC.
It’s time to end DOMA and DADT now.
Hey Queerty – Stick to the pretty pictures. Legal analysis ain’t your thing. Nothing seemed backwards about Boies’ point to me.
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