Prop 8: A Comedy (Part 1)

Everyone is blogging about the Prop 8 proceedings, and they are all very serious about the rightness/wrongness/timeliness/untimeliness/support/opposition to same-sex marriage. Well, fuck that. I’d like to focus solely on the hilarity that ensues when people are bitterly fighting over the American Constitution. And no, I have not watched/read any political satire/humor programs/blogs in the making of this post.

A brief intro: California’s Proposition 8, which outlawed same-sex marriage in the state, is currently being challenged in the courts in a case called Perry v. Schwarzenegger. The plaintiffs are trying to overturn Prop 8 and therefore re-legalize same-sex marriage in the state; the defendants are fighting in support of Prop 8, to keep same-sex marriage illegal. Today was the third day of the proceedings, and they will continue tomorrow. Let’s dive in.

Day 1

  • Kristin Perry, who comprises one half of one of the couples who brought this case against Prop 8, refers to her partner as “the sparkliest person I’d ever met.” On or off the witness stand, who the hell has ever used sparkly as an adjective for the person they love?
  • The plaintiff’s attorney Theodore Olson, who is famous for fighting and winning Bush v. Gore in favor of Bush back in 2000, asked his client, “What does it mean to be a lesbian?” Okay, I respect that he’s trying to go for a personal angle here, but still, the idea of someone being asked this in front of a bunch of old white dudes in robes sounds like a low-budget porn that I definitely don’t want to see.

Day 2

  • Professor Nancy Cott of Harvard unleashed the following delicious tidbit about our founding father:

“George Washington, the father of our country, was known to be sterile, which was considered an advantage because he could not create a dynasty.”

Day 3

  • “Will and Grace” and Brokeback Mountain were cited by defense attorney David Thompson as proof of changing attitudes in favor of gay rights. Um, whatever happened to citing Gallup public opinion polls? I’m not sure that this is the way to win an argument on constitutionality, buddy.
  • Okay, so Thompson did also cite a Gallup poll from 2002, stating that 86% of Americans believed homosexuals should have equal rights. Obviously I agree, but there is no way that this poll is relevant. If you poll Americans specifically about same-sex marriage, the numbers are completely different. (This isn’t a funny tidbit, I’ve just taken too many classes with Professor John Sides to take polls at face value.)
  • William Tam, defendant of Prop 8, claims that he found proof of a gay agenda through a Google search. Well, I just Googled “do vampires exist,” and I found proof that they do! And it was the first website that came up, so you know it’s true!

I think we’ll stop there for tonight. Check back here soon for updates, because nothing is funnier than civil rights.

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