While the election of Illinois Senator Barack Obama as America’s first Black president may have increased our country’s standing in the eyes of the world, California’s rejection of the right of Gays to marry brings only shame to itself and the nation as a whole, as well as showing that despite it’s support of Mr. Obama, the State of California is still firmly mired in the bigotry and conservatism of the Bush Era.
The rejection of Gay Marriage as a right was accomplished by misinformation campaigns and scare tactics by a coalition of groups that included The Mormon and Catholic Churches as well as Orthodox Jews, and who used some of the most shameful lies and deceitful advertisements to misinform voters as to the intent and restrictions of the law. The fact that Californians bought it shows either how easily misled they can be, how intolerant they are or just how little they were paying attention.
California, which enjoys an apparently misplaced reputation for liberalism, or at least tolerance, now joins the likes of Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi as a State which bans a basic civil right for Homosexuals, that which allows them to express their love for each other in a lasting and legally recognized way. A civil union is a legal contract, not a romantic commitment, something which Californians seem to find abhorrent.
Despite the permissive image of San Francisco and Los Angeles, a look at the electoral map of the state shows a sea of McCain ‘red’ from the northern part of the state which travels through the Central Valley and on down to Kern County just above Los Angeles, broken only by Sierra Mountain and Foothill region counties of Butte, Mono, Alpine and Nevada. Many of these ‘red’ counties picked Arizona Senator John McCain, another prominent supporter of the Gay Marriage ban, by margins of ten to twenty percent. Clearly, despite it’s more Liberal coastal population, California is a Conservative state.
Still, given the comparative population densities between the coast and the inland areas, it’s a safe assumption that many voters in the urban and supposedly ‘enlightened’ areas of state voted against allowing Gay marriage to continue as well. As Ed Lamont III would say, ‘what’s the point of being stupid if you can’t show it off every now and then?’