Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

The Prudence in Proposition 8’s Passage

Madison’s "multiplicity of sects" at work in securing passage of California’s defense of marriage constitutional amendment: the Mormons played the lead role in a coalition of religious groups. The prudence with which this was done is key to future successful efforts at defending morality. Review the NY Times reporting of these tactics, apply to other battles.

The canvass work could be exacting and highly detailed. Many Mormon wards in California, not unlike Roman Catholic parishes, were assigned two ZIP codes to cover. Volunteers in one ward, according to training documents written by a Protect Marriage volunteer, obtained by people opposed to Proposition 8 and shown to The New York Times, had tasks ranging from “walkers,” assigned to knock on doors; to “sellers,” who would work with undecided voters later on; and to “closers,” who would get people to the polls on Election Day.

Suggested talking points were equally precise. If initial contact indicated a prospective voter believed God created marriage, the church volunteers were instructed to emphasize that Proposition 8 would restore the definition of marriage God intended.

But if a voter indicated human beings created marriage, Script B would roll instead, emphasizing that Proposition 8 was about marriage, not about attacking gay people, and about restoring into law an earlier ban struck down by the State Supreme Court in May.

“It is not our goal in this campaign to attack the homosexual lifestyle or to convince gays and lesbians that their behavior is wrong — the less we refer to homosexuality, the better,” one of the ward training documents said. “We are pro-marriage, not anti-gay.”

Discussions - 8 Comments

If only the Republican party and Republican candidates had such an operation that really used volunteers to persuade voters, not only to remind them to vote. As it is, most GOP man-
hours are wasted.

But you guys already have churches . . .

Actually, aside from the NRA, churches are all about all we have. It doesn't begin to compare with the Democratic infrastructure. Church involvement is rare, and church people aren't especially effective political agents in most cases. Too naive, and most of them have their minds on other things.
Politics ultimately doesn't matter to most of them. They're also pretty shy usually.

PVC - "church people" are quite effective. Minds on other things, too naive, politics don't matter? If church-going Christians do not step up against sin in this world (including examining our own lives and convicting our own brothers and sisters), who will stand against the continued undermining of society under the guise of "civil rights"? Since when did marriage become a "right" instead of a "rite"? Marriage is NOT a civil right - it is not something that government can be confered or guaranteed because it does not discrimminate. You can choose whether to marry or not - also a lifestyle choice. The government registers marriages; this should not be misconstrued (like it has) as a civil right that can be guaranteed by any government. Also consider the implications from a purely social point of view, minus the religious arguments - if gays are allowed to marry, who will step up next to ask for their lifestyle to be confirmed by "legitimate" means? Polygamists? Swingers? Marrying one's dog?

I am a regular church-going person. I am also deeply involved in politics - it is a calling. Not everyone wants to get involved. It has rewards and risks. Some churches tell their members not to get involved because politics is a dirty business. It can be a corrupting influence, no doubt. Churches are also prohbited from endorsing one candidate over another although churches ARE allowed to hold a candidates forum and voter registration drives. During the 2004 election cycle, MANY churches were intimidated and told they could not hold a voter registration drive - that's simply not true. The real issue was that the Looney Left didn't want conservative Christians, votes THEY can't get because of their radical agenda, to register and vote and become active participants in the electoral process. Thugocracy at its worst.

Normally, I don't get riled up over politics. But I'm dismayed by the populace that voted for this new messiah. Granted, the seas haven't boiled, fire and brimstone haven't fallen from the heavens, the sky has not turned red (yet), but BHO will disappoint eventually. What will happen then for people whose only hope was cast with a mere mortal?

Oh come on, Jennifer. Get off your slippery-slope high horse. Marriage between two consenting adults doesn't have the legal ramifications of what you seem to think.

The laws against gay marriage are discriminatory - that is, they declare that homosexuals do not deserve the rights guaranteed to other married couples. If a church wants to allow two homosexual adults to get married, who is the government to get in their way? I can't really think of any reason the government would have an interest in rejecting such marriages - old people get married and can't procreate, divorce rates have already tarnished the "sanctity" of marriage, homosexual parents can lovingly adopt orphans, and polygamy and beastiality have already been held at bay by other countries which have legalized gay marriage (what a shock!).

Other than arrogant, absolutist Christians getting their way, I'm not sure why this is still so frowned upon. It is a civil rights issue because it's rejection emphasizes a glaring inequality in how the government recognizes different kinds of people.

But I'm not going to convince you here. Go pray to your god and read some Paul and I'm sure you can reaffirm your own bigoted beliefs and continually push them onto other people easily enough. Sorry to waste your time.

Interesting Jennifer what you say about the church registration drives. Don't let Matt dissuade you one minute...all real conservatives support the Californians' simple response to their out-of-control Supreme Court. That is, no conservative worthy of the name in any sense of the term can be for judicially-imposed gay marriage, precisely because it logically requires the judicial enshrinement of autonomous sexuality in our constitutions. It violates democracy, destroys constitutionalism, endangers religious freedom, and stokes polarization and questions about legitmacy. On legislatively-approved gay marriage, conservatives can and do have differences of opinion. The public does not have to approve polyandry, polygamy, and worst of all, "marriage-lite" for heterosexuals,if it approves gay marriage by regular old vote-for-it legislation. And, such a legislative victory would give gays what most of them really want--a SINCERE, not a "say-it-or-else" declaration of acceptance of the gay orientation/lifestyle from the heterosesxual public. But a gay marriage right found lurking in the "core" of our constitutional rights(that's language directly from the CA decision) by judge-rulers will logically require all the scary stuff. What is more, it would require that all of my above reasoning be defined as "bigotry" that can have no "rational basis" other than "animus," and so it must prohibit and penalize it. Matt doesn't know it, but he's ready for his judge-rulers to officially charge Jennifer and I for bigotry.

Oh, and Jennifer, while I would never ask the govt. to abridge your free speech rights, unless you advocated revolution or illegal acts, I humbly suggest that you remove the fever-swamp "H" out of your acronym for president-elect Obama. C'mon. Don't be like the Dems were with Bush.

A gay man can still marry a woman, so there is no real discrimination. Two people of the same sex getting married is something different, two straight men can't get married either so I just don't see how this can be construed as discrimination. But why argue logic when you can use morality and emotion...a much more effective tactic. Jenifer, you should about the fate of Savonarola in Renaissance Florence if you want to know what will happen when people learn their holy man lacks super powers.

No way! I don't want to see bigotry-speech banned! What would I do in my free time (well . . . or better - where else would I go to procrastinate) if you guys weren't on here?

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