A radical proposal on gay marriage: let the people decide!

As I’ve stated before, while I do support the idea of gay marriage in theory, I have grave problems with the way it was implemented in Massachusetts. For years people sought to have the matter placed on a state-wide referendum, and for years the legislature told them to take their petitions and stick them. Finally, the state’s Supreme Judicial Court (Massachusetts’ version of a supreme court) stepped in and made it the law of the Commonwealth, by a 4-3 vote.

Well, those very same people who tried for years to put the issue before the people, and were repeatedly rebuffed by their elected representatives, are back at it again. are giving it yet another try.

I hope they succeed. I hope it does get voted on in a public referendum. And while I hope it passes, I am pretty comfortable predicting it will fail.

Because while I do support gay marriage, and think it will eventually come to pass, I believe in democracy more. And I think that the Court’s early decision will end up doing far more harm than good to the cause. By forcing it down people’s throats, they galvanized the opponents and gave them a rallying point.

Several states had gay marriage proposals on the ballot last November, and it lost in every single one. I have to think that a good portion of that was backlash from the judges in Massachusetts, and mayors in New York and San Francisco, deciding such a major issue on their own. Those “victories” are turning out to have been pyrrhic ones, and will set the cause back for years.

As General Pyrrhus said so eloquently, “A few more victories of this sort and I will be ruined.”

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