Blogs > Liberty and Power > The Same-Sex Marriage Dance, Part I

Feb 5, 2004 8:42 pm

The Same-Sex Marriage Dance, Part I

Just a few hours after I noted how the Democrats will start to dance and waffle on same-sex marriage, along comes John Kerry with some fancy footwork. From today's WSJ Best of the Web:

The New York Times reports that Kerry says he rejects the ruling:

In a statement on Wednesday night, Mr. Kerry clearly sought a middle ground. He said he believed in protecting the "fundamental rights of gay and lesbian couples, from inheritance to health benefits," but added that he believed the answer was civil unions.

"I oppose gay marriage and disagree with the Massachusetts court's decision," he said.

To be sure, Kerry has tried to have it both ways on the issue of same-sex marriage, as Ed Gillespie, the Republican National Committee chairman, notes in the Times:

Mr. Gillespie . . . noted that Mr. Kerry voted against the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, barring federal recognition of same-sex marriages, a measure that was signed into law by President Bill Clinton.

Mr. Kerry said at the time that while he opposed same-sex marriage, he was voting against the bill because "I believe that this debate is fundamentally ugly, and it is fundamentally political, and it is fundamentally flawed."

Put on your dancin' shoes folks.

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Steven Horwitz - 2/6/2004

No argument from me Jonathan. The GOP hypocrisy is just as bad. In my original post ( ), I noted the equivalent GOP dance, which will be to "head-fake" to a constitutional amendment but not risk the votes that really doing so would cost them. I'm an equal opportunity basher on this issue, because I don't think either side is willing to clearly stake out the principled position either for or against same-sex marriages.

Jonathan Dresner - 2/6/2004

Oh, come on. We've been dancing around the issue of marriage for a very long time now. By allowing religious leaders to authenticate civilly recognized marriages, we've already tried to have the church and state cakes simultaneously.

The Republicans have their own dance, of course: fulminating about declining moral values and about the importance of marriage when their base is more likely to divorce than the "liberal" urbanites they blame for civilizational decay. Not to mention banging on about individual rights and government interference when capital is at stake, but diving on in when medical and moral issues are involved. I have no problem with the government taking up medical and moral issues: it's the hypocrisy I can't tolerate.