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The founding fathers had our backs
Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
October 26, 2005
There is talk again about a Constitutional amendment to limit the freedoms of gays and lesbians making its way round around Capital hill. Much like the Taliban of Afghanistan, Christian fundamentalists have appointed themselves ministers of vice and virtue, and are attempting to turn the United States Constitution into a weapon of hate.
I don't know about you, but I don't relish the idea of being reduced to the status of second-class citizen by bible welding fascists.
A federal amendment banning same sex marriage is as arbitrary as it is narrow-minded, setting dangerous precedent towards unraveling the civil rights of millions of Americans. More disturbing is George W. Bush openly advocating discrimination and inequality. The tip of a cultural iceberg, what other rights would he deny people, based entirely on gender orientation.
Other than bigotry, why is gay marriage even an issue? There are far more pressing issues to confront, yet loving relationships require federal prohibition? I don't think so.
Nowhere in the Declaration of Independence, the Untied States Constitution, or the Bill of Rights does it mention the exclusion of homosexuals. The whole "idea" of America is liberty and justice for all, right?
Reading through the founding documents nowhere could I find any verbiage to support the constitutionality of gender-based discrimination? Quite the contrary, what I found was quite clear of intent.
First, there was the Declaration of Independence:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." All are equal. All endowed with unalienable rights. Notice how it doesn't say "except for homos or dykes."
Next, there is this preamble of the Constitution.
"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
Excuse me but isn't same sex marriage, about men and women seeking domestic tranquility with other men and women? The right to marry would promote the common defense, general welfare, and secure the blessing of liberty for the GLBT community. How do constitutional scholars square the concept of justice with the threat of constitutional discrimination?
The Ninth Amendment of the Bill of Rights plainly states, "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." That alone settles the question of whether or not those who would deny gay Americans the right to marry can use the Constitution to do so.
The Tenth Amendment seals the deal "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."
History is on the side of gay America. The revolutionaries that fought for independence did not wage a bloody war in order to deny their ancestors the right to marry. When crafting the documents that hold the United States of America together, the founding fathers left plenty of room for the expansion of civil liberties and none for reductions.
At this point, it's obvious George W. Bush, and the hate crusaders pulling his strings, have not read the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, or the Bill of Rights. To be fair, I doubt many gays and lesbians have either. Perhaps that's part of the problem.
The question now is how do to defend constitutional rights not yet enjoyed, from faith-based politicians to ignorant to understand the intent of the Constitution they are trying to corrupt.
I think another revolution may be in order.