Tag Archives: Daily Kos

Debunking the Prop 8 Myths of Protecting Children

Cross posted at Big Orange.

A week or so ago, the legislature held a hearing regarding Proposition 8, the anti-marriage measure. These hearings are required by law to be held for every proposition, but this one, of course, was a bit more interesting.  A future Assemblyman, John Perez, an openly gay community and union leader running to replace the termed out Fabian Nunez, spoke of the inherent discrimination of seperate but equal. Samuel Thoron spoke of the importance to families of marriage equality.

On the other side, you had Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse basically said, “Why do you hate the children? THink of the Children who will be forced to grow up in a loving stable home where two parents love and support them?”

Ok, maybe not so much with the second part of that quote.  I’ve dutifully captured that video (after much labor with a corrupted DVD…let’s just say I spent way too much time on this) and offer it up to you.  Sincere Kudos go out to Assemblyman Dave Jones (D-Sac) who absolutely put Dr. Morse in her place. Exposing her argument as completely devoid of logic, and that is essentially a pretext.

Asm. Dave Jones:  Would you then tell the older heterosexual couple that they should not get married.

Dr. Morse: No, no I would not say that they shouldnt get married, but what I would say is that if the only kind of couples we had in society are elderly couples who are sterile we wouldnt need an institution of marriage.  You know, we wouldnt need it. So the point is, there are ways to solve–the problems that those couples face as elderly persons who arent going to have any kids

Jones:  Well, why didnt you craft this legislation to allow older gay couples to marry, if kids are the only concern

Morse:Well we thought it was simpler just to go back to the old man-woman definition.

Jones:  Or maybe this isnt about children after all

Morse: Right after this thereès some crazy stuff she gets into about in vitro fertilization becoming an entitlement.  The Rep asks her if she would outlaw In Vitro if the child knowing the biological parent is so important, and she says no.

Jones:  So let me sum this up.  You wouldnt ban infertility centers even though the children there wont know who their biological parents are, you dont agree with baning adoption even though in those circumstances children are not necessarily being raised by their biological parents, youre ok with, um, the adoption of children by gays and lesbians, you dont believe in banning divorce, even though by your own arguments theres been all sorts of analogous studies that indicate that divorce is very very harmful on children.  Um, its hard for me not to conclude that this isnt about protecting children…  I am utterly unconvinced that thats whats going on here.  What s going on here is fundamentally, I believe, an effort to discriminate against a class of people and deprive them of something that everybody else has.

But this is what Prop 8 supporters are attempting to sell both to the loyal flock of the Mormon Church and to the greater state of California.  An argument only thinly veiling its real purpose: to discriminate against one group of Californians, to only exclude those whom you don’t like.  And the lies only continue. The proponents argue that a failure of Prop 8 will lead to churches rocking house remixes of Madonna every Sunday because they have to let the gays take over. And not the good Madonna stuff…the new stuff! Boogy-Boogy-Boogy.

In fact, the Yes on 8 Campaign has gone through and come up with 6 Whole Ways Gay Marriage Will Ruin Your Life and the Life of All Straight Couples With Children. It’s basically a run down of everything you’ve seen in their commercials. You know, children will get taught gay marriage in schools, churches will be forced to marry teh gayz, Churches won’t be able to say anything about teh gayz being evil, and it will cost you tons of money (huh?).

Well, I’m sure I could go through point by point on this ridiculous list. But fortunately, it’s already been done.  Morris Thurston, a lifelong Mormon, long-time partner at Latham & Watkins (a big LA-based law firm), has already gone through point by point and taken them all down.  You can find a mini-post at Mormons for Marriage with the full PDF here or over the flip.

Mr. Thurston goes through each point, and completely rebuts them legally and also from a general logical standpoint. Take Reason #2, for example, churches will lose tax-exempt status if they don’t do same-sex marriages. Nope, says Mr. Thurston:

2. Churches may be sued over their tax exempt status if they refuse to allow same-sex marriage ceremonies in their religious buildings open to the public.  Ask whether your pastor, priest, minister, bishop, or rabbi is ready to perform such marriages in your chapels and sanctuaries.

Response:  This false “consequence” is based on the misrepresentation of a case in New Jersey involving an association affiliated with the Methodist Church. In considering that case, it is important to remember that New Jersey does not permit gay marriage, so that case had nothing to do with Proposition 8.  

*  *  *(More info on the New Jersey lawsuit)*  *  *

The California Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage cannot have any federal tax consequences, and the Court so noted explicitly in its decision.  The Supreme Court also noted that its ruling would not require any priest, rabbi or minister to perform gay marriages, which should be self-evident because of the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of religion.    

I’ll let you read the full smack-down of the “6 Reasons” but suffice it to say there’s not much left of the “Reasons” to argue with.  Which isn’t to say that you won’t be seeing them repeated over and over again on TV commercials and from silly talking heads like Dr. Morse, the Right isn’t really known for bowing to the reality of logic.

So, on this Sunday, consider giving to Equality for All, No on Prop 8, through the Calitics ActBlue Page, where we are just $1,500 from hitting $50K. (We’ve also given $2,000 from the Calitics CaliPAC, and another $5K+ from other Calitics pages). You can also do so over at Big Orange, where the Hell to Pay fundraisier has now raised well over $100K to fight back Prop 8.  Thanks to every who has given money to oppose Prop 8. And to everybody who hasn’t, time is of the essence. If you are considering, please do it as soon as possible.


Charlie Brown on “hell to pay”

There’s a weekly feature from now through the election on Daily Kos that’s called “Hell to Pay”, in which a contest is held among candidates from the Orange to Blue ActBlue page.  The winner of the contest has a special fundraising drive held for them on DailyKos on Saturday night.  The winner can usually count on racking up donations into the five figures.

Calitics favorite and CA-04 Congressional candidate Charlie Brown is one of this week’s contestants.  Voting is open right now, so if you have a DKos account, go vote.

P.S. I absolutely love Dan Seals, the candidate in IL-10.  Personable, friendly, wickedly smart, very receptive to the netroots, and an all around good guy.  It’s a Chicago suburb that we should be able to win and hold.  I hope he wins next week.  But right now, let’s get Charlie Brown an extra boost and send Tom McClintock back down to my neighborhood to go lose an election for some other office.

Please join Daily Kos and Members of SF Drinking Liberally in supporting Alaska’s next Senator

(Come out to Medjool tonight. – promoted by Brian Leubitz)

Hey Calitics,

My name’s Matt Browner-Hamlin and I’m the Online Communications Director for Mark Begich’s US Senate campaign in Alaska. We’re running against Ted Stevens, who most people have probably heard something about today. I wanted to be sure that you guys saw that Mark will be in the Bay Area this Friday and the fine folks of Daily Kos and members of San Francisco Drinking Liberally are hosting a fund raiser for us. You can RSVP for the event on ActBlue or pay at the door. Here are the event details:

Please join us for an event to support Mark Begich’s US Senate campaign in Alaska.

Friday, August 1, 2008

6:30 – 8:00 PM

Mezzanine at Medjool

2524 Mission St

San Francisco, CA 94110

Google Map

RSVP by ordering your tickets below. You can also buy your tickets at the door.

Questions? Please email Sam Brown at [email protected]

I won’t be able to attend the party, but I hope you guys can go and meet Mark, the next Senator from Alaska.

The CA 24th Congressional District Campaign

Dear Calitics Community,

Hi…This is Marta Jorgensen. As you know, I have won the Democratic Primary in the 24th District in our fair state of California. I am a long time blogger and grassroots organizer, the last project being the Draft Gore Ballot Drive. I know the power of the Netroots, respect the activist community, share your passion, your committment to the pressing issues of our time. I am grateful for the support you gave during our campaign.

I pledge to lay down the gauntlet to our present district leadership, the Republicans in office and Congressman Gallegly.

Let’s do this together, reinvigorate the people and their involvement in the process and bring it home in November!

Thank you,

Marta Jorgensen  

Just How Much Do Local Blogs Matter?

After seeing Gila’s latest story on The Liberal OC, I’ve been thinking. I know, I know. That’s a REALLY scary thought. But trust me, it’s not scary.

All too often when we think of the netroots, we think of those big, glitzy, glamorous national blogs with all those hundreds of thousands of User IDs. We think of that huge convention in Chicago that just ended. We think big, and we think national. But when you really look at the big picture, the national scene is only a small part of it.

The SF Chronicle just caught onto this, and I’m glad to see them noticing. There’s a giant segment of the netroots that hasn’t been noticed much, but is nonetheless making a huge difference throughout California, and throughout the nation. Follow me after the flip for more…

Some people who blog think the blogosphere has a tremendous impact on elections. I am not one of them. In general, I believe the impact of blogs today on who gets elected is miniscule. Their influence will likely increase as time goes on, but at the moment I think their effect on elections amounts to little more than an asterisk.

That’s part of what Gila has to say today at The Liberal OC. And you know what? She’s right. Whether we like it or not, the national blogosphere only has so much of an impact on elections and campaigns right now. Perhaps that will change some time in the future, but I don’t see it happening now.

Yes, the netroots is a big asset in terms of raising money and exciting the base. However, it can NOT be substituted for institutional donors on fundraising matters. And no, the netroots isn’t a proven vehicle to win votes. So on this matter, Gila is correct.

However, I make a conditional exception for local blogs.

And once again, Gila is spot on in her observation. While everyone is focusing on the big national blogs, they are all missing the one area of the blogosphere that’s having the most impact on politics, which is THE LOCAL BLOGOSPHERE.

The SF Chronicle takes a look at what happened with Say No to Pombo in CA-11 last year, and at what happened in a recent special election for State Senate in New York. In both cases, the local blogs brought to attention stories that the mainstream media ignored, and they ignited local readers to become local activists. I guess The Albany Project makes a huge difference in New York State, and all of us know in California just how instrumental the local netroots was in taking down Richard Pombo.

But of course, these aren’t the only examples of the local netroots making the real difference. After all, everyone here in Orange County knows that without the stellar coverage of local blogs like The Liberal OC, the Tan Nguyen psychodrama would have never become such a huge story. And of course, stories like Claudio’s “Ignorance to Enlightenment” series at Orange Juice have jump started countywide discussions on the intersection of faith and politics. Oh, and if you need another good example of what happens to a politician who ignites the fury of the blogosphere, see what’s been happening to Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen.

So what does this all say? It says that local blogs can be quite instrumental in influencing the political dialogue online AND offline. It says that local blogs can be key in making or breaking a local politician’s career. It says that just as all politics is local, all local politics can be strongly affected by what’s happening on the local blogosphere.

So what does this mean for us? This means that we should not be afraid to tackle local issues, and discuss local politics. Local affairs may not be “sexy” enough for the big national sites, but it’s the local politics where the local netroots can have the biggest impact.

Don’t believe me? Ask the New York State Democratic Party, or ask Richard Pombo, or ask Janet Nguyen (or Tan Nguyen for that matter!). They can tell you all about it. : )

CA-42: The Weekly Dirt on Dirty Gary

(Cross-posted at Trash Dirty Gary and The Liberal OC)

It’s been quite a wild week in the 42nd Congressional District. Ever since Ron Shepston announced that he’s running against Dirty Gary Miller, there have been quite some interesting developments that have occurred in the race to replace Dirty Gary. We’ve had the bloggers talk about going offline. We’ve had the California Democratic Party go online to announce its new website targeting Dirty Gary. We’ve heard rumors that a former Republican politician might reemerge to challenge Dirty Gary in the primary. Oh yes, and what did Ron say about John Kerry?

Follow me after the flip for all the latest dirt on Dirty Gary…

Part One: The Bloggers

The bloggers are coming out of the computer room. OK, so how do I know? The call has been made on Daily Kos. A few of my Kossack friends joined me at DFA Training last month, and they are ready to get the netroots involved in grassroots politics.

So what will come out of this? Hopefully, a whole lot of good work! I encourage our online friends, especially those of them in Southern California, to help us local activists in kicking some Dirty Gary arse and bringing some integrity back to the 42nd District!

Part Two: The Party

Nothing really prepared me for this. The California Democratic Party is actually doing something in the 42nd… And the 44th, as well as the 41st! It’s started the “Triangle of Corruption“, a web site that will keep track of all the dirty wrongdoings of Gary Miller, Ken Calvert, and Jerry Lewis. Way to go, CDP!

Part Three: The Other Challenger?

Oh my goodness, you just have to see this bit of salacious gossip that Art Pedroza included in this week’s “OC Political Chismes“! Apparently, there’s word out here that Lynn Daucher may run against Dirty Gary in the Republican Primary next June. Yes, you heard me right… Lynn Daucher!

So will Miss “Shopping for the Right District” end up running where she actually lives? I don’t know. Still, it would be nice to see Lynn run for office representing a place where she actually resides.

Part Four: The Candidate

Oh yes, and take a look at this, why dont you? No, Ron isn’t trying to take a jab at John Kerry. He’s just talking about how much the Daily Kos community contributes to Democratic victory. Go ahead and take another look at Ron’s latest Daily Kos diary… You might start thinking differently about “those crazy bloggers”.

Part Five: And Finally…

Here’s another rule that Dirty Gary broke! Cheese louise, he wore a hawaiian shirt inside the halls of Congress?! Not only does he have no respect for decorum, but he doesn’t even have any good taste! ; )

NEWS FLASH! Kos Is Out to Get Republicans!

H/T to The Liberal OC for catching this first! : )

After witnessing the damage inflicted on [Former Senator George] Allen by Democrat campaign staff, Markos Zuniga is serious. Democratic Party activists are to be armed with high-tech video equipment looking to preserve any visible or audible mistakes committed by Republicans during public speaking appearances (not just from stages and podiums, but presumably private conversations on public grounds).

That was San Bernardino County Republican Party staffer Adam Aleman on FlashReport today, warning all the poor little Republicans about the monster that is being unleashed by BIG, BAD MARKOS and all his blogger minions. Just look at how George Allen’s political career was destroyed by one innocent little “macaca moment“. Remember that he was supposed to be running for President by now?

So what is it about progressive bloggers that’s scaring the living daylight out of seasoned Republican insiders? Why are they so afraid of us? Follow me after the flip to find out…

So why are they afraid? Well, the infamous “macaca” video didn’t just contribute to George Allen’s loss of a Senate seat. It dashed the hopes of many right-wingers that a charming Southern politician could help them keep the White House in 2008.

Here’s some more from FlashReport:

George Allen is not campaigning for the White House in Des Moines, Manchester or anywhere else as a result of his surprise re-election loss last November. A loss that happened in large part due to Allen being the first major candidate to be “Youtubed.” A paid staff member of his upstart Democratic opponent videotaped Allen making derogatory statements that many perceived as racially insensitive. Senator Allen’s shocking defeat became THE case study of how the term “youtube” suddenly became a verb in political parlance. See the video that doomed Allen here.

How significant of a role did the amateur video by a Democratic Party operative play in Allen’s defeat? Well, consider this fact. George Allen was considered so safe for re-election that his initial campaign manager left Allen’s campaign to work on a race that was considered tougher. Allen was ranked as so secure in his Senate seat that he was already starting to visit early GOP presidential primary states in anticipation of an expected 2008 bid for the GOP presidential nomination.

Well, Allen’s unfortunate incident certainly put a crimp in his presidential plans for 2008, and quite possibly forever. And it clearly was a factor in his 2006 re-election loss to a political neophyte named Jim Webb.

I guess that’s why they’re afraid. If progressive bloggers can not only put this man in the Senate and destroy this man’s Presidential aspirations, but also end twelve years of Republican dominance of Capitol Hill, then just think of all the pain and suffering that Republicans may soon endure. Just think of the horror! The horror!

This man might lose his seat in Congress. And so might this man. And wait, this man might also go down in flames next year! And so might this man! Heck, maybe this woman isn’t even safe any more! What happens if Republicans lose more Congressional seats in California instead of taking back the one that they lost last year?

And with sites like this one and this one and this one popping up all the time, Republicans can never feel safe here. Oh yes, and they always need to watch out for this one and this one. Poor things. Who knew that accountability could be so scary? ; )

Presidential Campaign Comes to California

Kos weighs in:

With California moving up its primary, my vote will actually matter next year. And now I can officially narrow down my choices to Edwards, Obama, and Richardson. […]

Not only is the Clinton campaign pig-headed, they are also remarkably out-of-touch. They are “surprised” at the anger this war is generating? Has she been living in a cave the last four years (yes, the Senate apparently is a cave). The last thing we need in the White House is another out-of-touch, tone-deaf Bush-style presidency, unable or unwilling to admit mistakes and change course as a result.

Hillary will now see her campaign events hijacked by anti-war protesters, with people demanding she defend her vote at every corner. Iraq will dominate coverage of her campaign, and she’s on the wrong side of the issue. And by going this far without admitting her mistake, she has painted herself into a corner. Any attempt now to back off and apologize would be met with the proper scorn.

This is the emerging conventional wisdom and I expect the California Hillary events that are “hijacked” will be some of the most memorable.