The California Supreme Court follows Miss California’s example and comes down against homosexual relationships. The court actually wrote some bull about the people of California, with their collective desire to limit marriage only to heterosexual customers, has the right to change the state constitution as they deem necessary. All it takes is a majority vote and you too can have your rights for equal treatment under the law dashed away. The majority rules and the minority lose.
The majority of California voters are adhering to some dumb traditional definition of marriage. Tradition is all that matters to most. People forget that there was a time when the definition of fully human meant that a person had to be of obvious European descent with no evidence of any measurable lesser ethnicity. Black people were only sixty percent the human of white people. That was the traditional definition established by the dominant community in order to protect white privilege.
Somebody had the courage to reject the status quo and redefine what it meant to be human, traditional definitions be damned. It was traditional thinking that the world was flat. It was traditional thinking that our planet was the center of the universe. It was traditional thinking that blood letting was good to cure maladies.
People in this country have a tradition of bucking traditional thinking. If tradition was so important, we’d still be a colony of the British Empire. If tradition was so important, we wouldn’t be using assembly lines in our manufacturing processes. Tradition isn’t as important as many people try to pretend it is with respect to this particular issue. Nevertheless, it is often difficult to get people to reject traditional thought processes in favor of more enlightened ideas and informed concepts. And often times, it takes people who are able to adhere to principles to effect change on a community.
During the struggle for civil rights, it took people with courage to buck popular trends. When it was hugely popular to see people standing at school entrances in an effort to deny the black community educational opportunities, people of principle were able to see past what may have been popular in favor of a vision of what was appropriate for everyone. I’m sure if it was left to a simple majority vote, people back in the day would have cheerfully denied black people equal protection under the law.
But change doesn’t come when people are more than happy to stay stuck in ruts. Progress doesn’t happen when people stick with tradition for the sake of tradition. And progress doesn’t happen when you have a minority population that is left to the whims of a majority population who could not care less about being fair or treating people who are different as equals. Putting the whole matter before the people and letting the majority decide who will be discriminated against is not due process.
When Jesus went on trial before Pontius Pilate, the prefect of the Roman Empire’s Judea province, Pilate left the fate of Jesus to the discretion of the people. And we all know how that turned out. The people asked for Jesus’ head on a platter and they got what they wanted. The government bureaucrat waffled then, government bureaucrats are waffling now.
Some will find the comparison of the crucifixion of Jesus to the denial of marriage to homosexuals to be ridiculous. They don’t even equate. And I would agree. That’s not the point being made here. The point I’m trying to make is that using public opinion to drive public policy sets a dangerous precedence that anything goes as long as it goes with the majority.
Laws are designed to protect people. Laws are designed to assure everybody has equal protection and equal rights and equal access to various aspects of society and culture. When we practice discrimination by public consent we take a major step backwards in our perpetual pursuit of a more perfect union.
As a national collective, we are constantly deluding ourselves that we are the freest country in the world. People are constantly attacking us because they are jealous of our freedoms. We are so free that we have the luxury to discriminate against the minorities amongst us. And the fact that their freedoms have been taken away doesn’t matter one bit. If people want the same freedoms as the majority then they’re free to make the changes in their life to become part of the truly free majority.