Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Gay "Marriage"

Went to another Federalist Society sponsored event today, this time in downtown Los Angeles. The topic was gay "marriage", and there was a panel of four speakers that included the dean of Pepperdine Law School and former special independent counsel in the Whitewater matter, Ken Starr.

Two of the panelists were lawyers who are involved in challenging the constitutionality of Prop. 22, i.e., the California Defense of Marriage Act. The basis of their argument is somewhat technical, and disingenuous IMHO, but their position basically amounts to a contention that Prop. 22 invidiously discriminates against homosexuals and serves no legitimate government purpose.

The other two panelists, including Ken Starr, were presumptively against the legal recognition of gay "marriage". I say "presumptively," because the crux of their comments today pretty much focused on why the dispute over gay "marriage" should stay out of the courts and be resolved by the people through their duly elected representatives. One sensed the opposition these panelists had to gay "marriage" by the examples they provided as to how Prop. 22 could withstand constitutional scrutiny. (By "examples", I mean kinds of legitimate government purposes for which Prop. 22 serve. It is interesting to note that the government doesn't even have to be right about a particular purpose, e.g., traditional marriage results in less maladjusted children, in order for it to be legitimate.)

Since the event was co-sponsored by the left-liberal American Constitution Society, there were a significant number gay "marriage" proponents in the audience. I'm happy to report that no fisticuffs occurred, and I got 1.5 Mandatory Continuing Legal Education credits for basically $20.

Follow Up: I just remembered that one of the pro-gay "marriage" panelists attempted to argue that gay "marriage" was not an ideological issue that fell along liberal-conservative lines because noted stalwart conservatives like Andrew Sullivan are in favor of making gay "marriage" legal. Talk about self-undermining your argument.

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