aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Katie, her dad & Michael’s privilege
LATER: The Carpetbagger nominates Kaitie’s old co-host Matt Lauer for the worst of all possible Michael J. Fox coverage.
Katie Couric had an exclusive interview with Michael J. Fox. Interesting how full disclosure works:
COURIC: By the way, in the spirit of full disclosure I think it’s important to mention that my dad has Parkinson’s Disease - he told me today it’s okay to tell you that - and in the past I’ve made contributions for Parkinson’s research through Michael J. Fox’s foundation.
I wonder what Rush will have to say about that? Damned if she do, damned if she don’t I’d say. Can you imagine if she hadn’t made that disclosure? Then there’s this:
Fox told Couric that despite it being tough to sit for interviews as his symptoms worsen, he feel privileged to be able to do so.
“Honestly, I mean, I really feel this: That you get in your life very few chances to make a difference. And I really feel privileged to do this that I get a chance to do this. But having said that, it’s not pretty. It’s not pretty when it gets bad,” Fox said. “I’ve learned to throw vanity out the window. I’ve had enough years of people thinking I was pretty and teenage girls hanging my picture on walls. I’m over that now.”
The stem cells are thrown away, he addressed the “slippery slope” argument, he called Republican Senator Arlen Specter “my guy” and said that “disease is a non-partisan problem that requires a bipartisan solution.”
Limbaugh can go ahead and pull one from the Coulter 9/11 widows playbook. Said he, “Democrats have a long history of using victims.”
Replies Fox, “I am not a victim. I am someone whose in this situation, I think I’m in this situation along with millions of other Americans and we have a right, if there’s answers out there, to pursue those answers with the full support of our politicians. And so I don’t need anyone’s permission to do that.”
For the record, I saw the Fox commercial the moment it was released. I thought it powerful but did not post about it. What the Right accomplished through its demonizing is to turn it into an issue I am following closely. Does anyone want to bet I’m the only American that’s happened to?
TiNo v. To not watch a TV show saved on a TiVo or other personal video recorder. —n. An unwatched show saved on a TiVo or other PVR. [Blend of TiVo and no.]
I think not
In terms of so-called “October Surprises” that might affect the election, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruling that opens the door to gay marriage certainly ranks below the congressional page scandal involving former Florida Rep. Mark Foley. But the decision could be a welcome boost for a White House and congressional Republicans who are worried about firing up the conservative base of their party.
They say it won’t make a difference in NJ but:
Measures to ban gay marriage are on the ballot in nine states, including Virginia and Tennessee, and conservative activists will point to the New Jersey decision as a reason people in those states should go to the polls, even if they’re dissatisfied with how the Republican majority has run the country. If that message resonates, the same people celebrating the New Jersey decision could be having mixed feelings about it come election day.
I will have to comment in detail on Georgia in a future post - I have been avoiding it because it is so profoundly depressing to me - but I am not blindly optimistic. I expect 8 of those 9 state ballot measures to pass.
Still, the bigger their win the more to goad reasonable people, the American people, into realizing that the other side has gone way too far. On to 2008!
Geoffrey Stone in the University of Chicago Law School Faculty Blog:
Among the many intriguing facets of this decision is that the vote was 4-to-3. The three dissenting justices did not argue that gays and lesbians do not have a right to the legal benefits of marriage; rather, they argued that gays and lesbians are also entitled to equal access to the word “marriage.” Thus, the court was unanimous in holding that New Jersey could not constitutionally (under the state constitution) deny gays and lesbians the legal benefits of marriage. [...]
A few years ago I attended a dinner with twenty more or less randomly selected students. When I asked how many would vote as legislators to authorize gay and lesbian marriage, 90% said they would. The very idea of gay and lesbian marriage twenty years earlier would have seemed preposterous. Most students would have considered such a suggestion tantamount to proposing today that people should be allowed to marry cats. Most students would have been completely taken aback by such a suggestion, and likely replied, “that’s just not ‘marriage’.”
This is what is meant by “raising one’s consciousness.” I’m old enough to remember when blacks couldn’t drink from the same water fountain as whites and when a woman Supreme Court justice, an African-American secretary of state, an openly gay congressman, and a Hispanic attorney general seemed unthinkable. Today’s students will no doubt regale their children with their memory of a time when, believe it or not, gays and lesbians couldn’t marry. Pretty amazing.
You know what they’ll call it but it just won’t pack the same punch this time. Dahlia Lithwick:
Whatever the court actually did today in New Jersey, you can’t call it activism. Yes, the court directed the legislature to do something to balance the inequities between heterosexual families and homosexual ones. But it offered plenty of space for the legislature to maneuver as it sees fit: “[T]he Legislature must either amend the marriage statutes to include same-sex couples or create a parallel statutory structure, which will provide for, on equal terms, the rights and benefits enjoyed and burdens and obligations borne by married couples.” It’s for the electorate, not the courts, to determine what that legal regime will become. Moreover, the court “will not presume that a separate statutory scheme, which uses a title other than marriage, contravenes equal protection principles, so long as the rights and benefits of civil marriage are made equally available to same-sex couples.”
The future battle is not over the bundle of rights and obligations granted to same sex couples. The court finds no rational reason to deny them. The only fight-to be duked out in the legislature-is what to call the thing.
Of course I want it called “marriage” but a rose by any other name... Dahlia’s kicker:
Memo to Karl Rove: Those who oppose this decision aren’t opposed to judicial activism. They are opposed to judges.