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MI: Marriage ban comes with no benefits!

by Jeremy Hooper

You know how social conservatives make all sorts of protestations about constitutional marriage bans, saying they're designed only to "protect traditional marriage." Yea, well guess what? They're blowing more smoke up voters' arses than an enema bag filled with lit cigarettes!

This from the Detroit Free Press:

An amendment to the state constitution approved by voters in 2004 to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman also prohibits public employers from providing health care and other benefits to the same sex partners of employees, a divided Michigan Supreme Court ruled today.

The court majority found that language in the amendment prohibiting recognition of other unions “for any purpose” included the extension of benefits to gay and lesbian partners of public employees.

Yes, that's right -- due to the state's constrictive ban on marriage equality, the court has ruled Michigan's public employers are also prevented from respecting their gay employees' partnerships in the way that they see fit. It doesn't matter if a tenured professor of forty years wants insurance for her domestic partner of thirty six years. Because of this stupid, narrow-minded, backwards, un-American ban, that employee's coupling MUST be treated with less respect than a just-hired teacher who entered into a drunken Vegas wedding with a girl he met the night before. Un-f**fng-real!

Kids, these gay marriage opponents -- and it should be noted that the AFA of Michigan's Gary Glenn led the opposition on this -- want us unrecognized in every sense of the word. Ultimately they want our existences marginalized so much that we can't help but buckle under the weight of the resistance. This is not and has never been about "protecting marriage." Yet either because (a) they've been duped, (b) it's easier for them to reconcile their stances if they tell themselves they are acting decently, or (c) they know it's the most effective strategy for passing their discrimination, loads of people have bought into the falsely compassionate idea that these bans are not against anyone, but rather for "traditional values." They have washed their hands clean of the sweeping damages and unnecessary heartbreak that they bring to same-sex couples. They have justified their mean-spirited stances within themselves so as to not lose any sleep at night, all the while creating for many gay couples a degree of worry so great, they lie awake worrying how they will protect the one they love. It's just plain cruel!

We must do better. We have to call this situation out for what it is, and connect the dots for the public. We are being written off by our social conservative opponents, yet only negligibly defended by our supposedly progressive allies. This must change. Our troops should be made up of not only gays and other supporters of same-sex marriage rights, but also those who support American values, those who detest opportunistic lies, those who believe that all taxpaying citizens are deserving of equal representation, and anyone who believes in the concept of freedom. But we are not a rallied army who is stepping up and fighting this pervasive strain of faith-based intolerance. We are losing because they're campaigns are rabid and focused, while our ragtag bunch of would-be defenders still has not fully recognized how great and far-reaching the threat truly is. This must change and it must change now. If you think they're goal ends at "protecting marriage," then you simply aren't paying attention.

Gay marriage ban affects partner benefits, court rules [Detroit Free Press]

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Your thoughts

"It's just plain cruel." 'nuff said.

Posted by: Richard | May 7, 2008 1:43:21 PM

Yes, and thats why I so applauded Waymon and FIGHTING OUT LOUD, once I realized this.
Just read the history of ACT UP! That was the only way AIDS sufferers forced the drug companies and medical establishment to begin to attack the HIV problem. Sit ins, sick ins, lots of large demonstrations etc.

Wake up and start FIGHTING OUT LOUD.

Straight for Equality, out and proud and louder every day.

Posted by: LOrion | May 7, 2008 1:51:46 PM

So how about a work stoppage in the entire state of Michigan by all people this judgement affects! Plan it , announce it, televise it, etc.

Posted by: LOrion | May 7, 2008 1:53:16 PM

Can't wait to hear what HRC is goind to say... very quietly before the next GALA DINNER.

Posted by: LOrion | May 7, 2008 1:55:02 PM

What these groups are are nothing more than backstabbing liars. But I probably could extend that to all social conservatives.

Posted by: adam kautz | May 7, 2008 2:35:20 PM

Well said, the biggest lie is this is about marriage, the truth is this is about dehumanizing and disenfranchising LGBT people.

Posted by: Rob | May 7, 2008 2:47:32 PM

Even under the old policies which allowed same-sex domestic partners to receive health insurance, the benefit was (is in states where it is still available) considered taxable income to the employee.

Without full marriage rights, we still get screwed by having to pay taxes (Federal at least, and State taxes as well in some States)on benefits that straight married couples don't pay taxes on. Even though that tax is a decidedly lower cost than insurance premiums, it is nonetheless a cost.

Posted by: Dick Mills | May 7, 2008 3:26:38 PM

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