Alex Blaze

Democracy fail

Filed By Alex Blaze | April 27, 2009 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: activist judges, Democrats, iowa, LGBT, marriage, petition, republican

From Iowa:

A group of same-sex-marriage opponents is also expected to arrive this morning to deliver a petition urging the recorder's office not to issue the licenses. Polk County sheriff's deputies are on hand to maintain the peace.[...]

Emmet County Recorder Sue Snyder said no marriage licenses had been issued this morning, as of about 8:15 a.m. There was one protester of the marriage licenses to same-sex couples, a friend of Snyder's, who brought in a petition for Snyder to have, Snyder said.

"They're asking that we refuse to issue these licenses," Snyder said. "My response is that I'm governed by the state of Iowa to follow the laws and serve the people and that's what I will do. We just agreed that it would not cause any friction between our friendship, then we left it at that."

These people always thought democracy was a hindrance to enacting their agenda, which is why their whining about judges interpreting the law (regarding gay rights, abortion, property rights, or anything else they disagree with) has always been suspect.

Sure, gay marriage advocates in Iowa went through the courts. But the court interpreted the democratically-enacted constitution... if Iowans don't like the fact that their constitution grants equal protection, then they have a process to change that.

But petitions to county clerks asking them to break the law? That's about as silly as it gets. How many signatures would I have to collect to get a bureaucrat to break the law for me?

And, if they actually did get a clerk to accede to their demands, something tells me that moan till the cows came home that that clerk's religious freedom was violated should she be punished. Because there being a consequence to a Righteous act of civil disobedience just can't make sense.

The homophobes have always been the "by any means necessary" side of this debate. Their complaints about "activist judges" is just their way of saying that they don't like losing. That's about it.


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Don Sherfick Don Sherfick | April 27, 2009 1:38 PM

Newt Gingrich, with your idol George Will looking on with approval, came up with something a bit more formal than just simple executive branch employee disobedience on ABC's "This Week" a little while back. All that was necessary was for the Iowa Legislature to vote not to obey the Iowa Supreme Court, for the Governor to sign it, and poof...so much for the third co-equal branch of government. Scary, isn't it?

Scary in that that's actually the way to amend the Iowa constitution, or scary in that Newt Gingrich was once one of the most powerful people in the country and he thinks that's the way the government works?

To throw more confusion into the mix, I've already seen a headline labeling a judge as an "Activist". The reason? He waived the required three-day waiting period for a lesbian couple for undisclosed medical reasons. (I saw later that it had something to do with one of them being fairly far along in a pregnancy and wanting to make sure her spouse could make medical decisions.)

So now, a judge is an activist if he adjudicates, and a recorder is a patriot if he refuses to record.

Definition of "activist judge." Any judge who rules against me.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | April 28, 2009 5:25 AM

Our complaints about "activist judges" who rule against us is assuredly a statement of ourselves not enjoying losing either.

America is not a Democracy. It is a Republic with a Bill of Rights in need of reaffirmation. We talk about the fear of the misdeeds of government, corporations, financial institutions, political systems, but we neglect to remember the need to maintain the power of the individual. Fortunately, this Iowa Recorder knew his job, understands the law and enforces it.

No greater victory can come our way or the way of every American than the end of the "Patriot Act."