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Gay Marriage Activists Who Prefer Intimidation to Education

Once again, gay marriage activists show they’d rather intimidate their opponents than address their arguments.  Just as in Maine, gay groups plan to “out” citizens in Washington State who sign a petition to put a referendum on the ballot in order to overturn the recent expansion of the state’s same-sex partnerships. (In the Evergreen State, the legislation in question merely expands the states domestic partner law to “give partners the same state rights as married couples,” but does not call them marriages as did the legislature in the Pine Tree State.)

Instead of publishing the names with an eye to intimidate, why don’t they just prepare to debate the issue in public fora should this referendum make the ballot?  Given the demographics of Washington State, I think those who favor such a referendum going to have a tough time overturning the law.  Bear in mind, this is recognition of same-sex unions as domestic partnerships, not as marriages.  The Evergreen State is far to the left of Arizona whose voters in 2006 rejected a referendum barring state recognition of same-sex marriages, largely because it was too expansive and would have banned civil unions as well.

And defeat of such a referendum could provide a real boost to efforts to enact civil unions in other states.

That said, for the same reasons I opposed a referendum in Maine, I also oppose one in Washington State.  Elected representatives who decided the issue.  If citizens don’t like the way their representative voted, they can vote them out of office.

Still, the state constitution allows them to put such a referendum on the ballot.  But, all too many gay marriage activists just get really upset if people express opposition to their agenda and dare do something about it.  So, I joined Michelle Malkin in wondering how they would they react if social conservatives attempted to intimidate those supporting state recognition of same-sex marriage?

. . . imagine the uproar if the roles were reversed and anti-gay marriage activists were publicizing the names of petitioners supporting same-sex partnership expansion laws.

But when they do it, they’re not creating a “climate of hate.” They’re just exercising their free speech.

Their very tactics suggest a reluctance to debate an issue supposedly near and dear to their hearts.  They’d rather make it personal.

If they eschewed such politics of intimidation and focused on making a careful and considered case of state recognition of same-sex partnerships, we may well see more states doing as Washington State has done.

Do Left-Wing Bloggers Share Blame in Military Recruiter’s Death?

On USA Today‘s homepage today (at 5PM EST), there are three links prominently displayed to articles on the murder Sunday of late-term abortion provider Dr. George Tiller, including one to an article asking if religious conservatives share the blame for his death (not to mention a variety of other subsidiary links).  There are no links to the article on a Muslim convert’s shooting spree at an Arkansas recruiting center in which one soldier, William Long, was killed and another wounded.

As Michelle Malkin documents, this is not the first time military recruitment centers have been targeted.

And it’s not just USA Today which has devoted more attention to the murder of the abortion doctor.  Over at Newsbusters, Amy Ridenour finds there are “14 times more stories about George Tiller in Google News.”  It could be, she speculates (with tongue firmly planed in cheek), because Tiller’s murder occurred 24 hours earlier.

While USA Today wonders if religious conservatives contributed to the murder of Tiller and left-wing bloggers and their MSNBC lickspittle blame O’Reilly for the kiling, one smart young blogger wonders if those very bloggers are to blame for Long’s murder:

Salon, the Huffington Post, and the Daily Kos have already identified Bill O’Reilly as the culprit for abortionist George Tiller’s murder, so I now heap the blame on Keith Olbermann and all of the above mentioned websites and CNN for the shooting at a military recruiting center in Arkansas. . . .

We know that Markos Moulitsas, owner of the Kos, wants those fighting in Iraq and reporting in Iraq to die because he has expressed that opinion himself, and the other liberals have been encouraging the deaths of military recruiters and soldiers just by being against the war and against recruiting.

Read the whole thing.

So, you think USA Today will run an article asking if left-wing bloggers share the blame in Long’s death?  To paraphrase Amy Ridenour who wondered if there would “be approximately 7,000 references to William Long in Google News 24 hours from now,”  Don’t hold your breath.

Prospects Don’t Look Good for Overturning Proposition 8

Based on conversations I’ve had with those close to the leadership of the gay organizations who spearheaded the campaign last fall against Proposition 8 and on what I have read on the web about the “Meet in the Middle” rallies this past weekend, I’d say the prospects look pretty poor for overturning Proposition 8 next fall at the ballot box.

To be sure, a lot could change between now and then.  We haven’t yet seen the wording for the ballot initiative.  The campaign promoting the initiative could include Republicans–or at least those who know how to communicate with Republicans (but based on past experiences, I wouldn’t bet on it).

The problem is threefold:

  1. GOP Turnout Will be up in 2010.  Based on tradition patterns for off-year election, Republican turnout should be up in 2010.  Given GOP outrage over the rapid growth in federal spending and the return of big government, conservatives seem particularly emboldened to head to the polls next fall.
  2. Left-wing Nature of Campaign to Overturn.  The rhetoric at the Decision Day Rally I attended sounded more like that for a left-wing gathering than for a movement ot win the hearts and minds of centrist and conservative voters.  The leaders of the movement (as it is now constituted) have a background in “progressive” movements, thus are not conditioned to appeal to those they most need to reach.
  3. Default Reaction is Voting “No” on Initiatives.  When voters don’t know enough about a particular initiative, they tend to vote “No.”  This could mean a huge chunk of electorate just votes against some measures as if by rote.   Given how much media attention gay marriage attracts, that “chunk” will be much smaller on this issue, maybe 2-3 percentage points, but that could be enough.  Bear in mind that in 2010, unlike 2008, a “Yes” vote would be a vote for gay marriage.

Still, it’s early, way early.  And the leadership of the movement to overturn 8 does have time to address the second issue, the one they can most readily fix.  They should tear a page from Barack Obama’s 2008 general election campaign.  Almost as soon as he wrapped up the Democratic nomination, he began to reverse some of his positions and move to the center as he addressed the concerns of voters in the middle, reassuring them that he would pursue a more centrist path.

Right now, the prospects don’t look good for overturning 8 in ’10.  But, a lot could change in 17 months.