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Tomasky writes: "Wrapping opposition to same-sex marriage today or interracial marriage then in a religious blanket--or, in this case, a fancy jurisprudential one--is not okay. It was bigotry then, and it's bigtory now, pure and simple."

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. (photo: Peter Kramer/AP)
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. (photo: Peter Kramer/AP)


Scalia Is Just a Bigot

By Michael Tomasky, Daily Beast

11 December 12

 

PM's Sahil Kapur recalls the great man's reaction to the Lawrence v. Texas, ruling, as we reflect on the recent news that the Court will hear two gay-marriage cases:

In a landmark 2003 decision, the Court ruled that states may not outlaw sodomy among consenting adults of the same sex. The minority dissent in the 6-3 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas was authored by Justice Scalia, who argued that the Court’s reasoning effectively, if not explicitly, knocked down the legal basis for outlawing gay marriage.

“Today’s opinion dismantles the structure of constitutional law that has permitted a distinction to be made between heterosexual and homosexual unions, insofar as formal recognition in marriage is concerned,” Scalia wrote.

Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion said the Court’s ruling against anti-sodomy laws “does not involve whether the government must give formal recognition to any relationship that homosexual persons seek to enter.”

Scalia’s retort: “Do not believe it.”

“This case ‘does not involve’ the issue of homosexual marriage only if one entertains the belief that principle and logic have nothing to do with the decisions of this Court,” he wrote.

The Reagan-appointed justice accused the majority on the Court of having “taken sides in the culture war” and having signed on to the “homosexual agenda.”

What blithering nonsense. For a long time, I've written sentences that, while supporting gay marriage, take care to mention that I can understand if a person's religious convictions prevent them from agreeing with me. I used to think that. Then I thought a couple of weeks ago, well, that's pretty chicken shit, Mikey. I sound just like a person from a hundred years ago who understood if others' religioius convictions led them to support miscegination laws. So I'm done with that.

Wrapping opposition to same-sex marriage today or interracial marriage then in a religious blanket--or, in this case, a fancy jurisprudential one--is not okay. It was bigotry then, and it's bigtory now, pure and simple. And Scalia is a bigot, or at least those views expressed above are bigoted views. A hundred years from now, or even less, this will be clear as a bell, and people like Scalia will sound just as ignorant as the old racists do today.

 

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+211 # zepp 2012-12-11 13:28
Scalia is pretty much mental these days. He opined that if you can't oppose gay marriage on moral grounds, then there is no basis to outlaw murder. Apparently he isn't aware that murder is a violation of a human right, but gay marriage is not. American law is based on rights, not morals.
But Scalia dismisses the Bill of Rights, scoffing that any "tinhorn dictator" has a bill of rights.
The man is utterly unfit for the high office he holds, and should be impeached.
 
 
+107 # Patriot 2012-12-11 15:11
Wouldn't you think tht a Supreme Court Justice would know -- and remember --enough history of the ratification of the Constitution to be aware that the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the proposed Constitution, were a **condition** of ratifying the Constitution, to strengthen the people's control of and protection from government?

Too many of us keep forgetting that government works for us, and exists to serve us at our pleasre (not the other way around), and that we hold all the rights except those specifically delegated by us to our state and federal governing bodies and officers, in our state and federal consititutions.

Our election days may be the only time we have an opportunity, as an entire nation of people, to govern ourselves by selecting those who will administer the country in our name and as we dictate from time to time, but that does not mean that all the rest of the time we are subordinates of our government, or subservient or inferior to it.

Unfortunately, the people who most frequently seem to forget the nature of government in this country sit in our state legislatures and governors' mansions, in our congress and in our White House, and on judicial benches all over the country and at the Supreme Court.

We will have to redouble our efforts to remind them.
 
 
+82 # WestWinds 2012-12-11 15:32
If ever there was a reason to have elected Supreme Court Justices and term limits, this crowd on the SCOTUS now, with the exception of two, are it. When is this country going to smarten up and stop agreeing to the same mistakes and horrors over and over again? We need to get rid of these terrible people and put in place mechanisms that will forever bar them and their type from getting a hold on any or all branches of our government.
(We also need to shut down Liberty University, Patrick Henry and Regents which are schools pumping out whack-job Right-wing lawyers who are out to pervert and destroy any semblance of sanity in this country.
 
 
+20 # in deo veritas 2012-12-11 19:11
Any way to have the SOB declared mentally incompetent to hold office? There is a clause in the Constitution that delineates grounds for this in regard to the executive branch.
 
 
+19 # in deo veritas 2012-12-11 19:14
Too bad we do not have the same system that they use in the UK so that members of Congress could be given a vote of "no confidence" and new elections be held without giving the dirtbags a full term in which to wreck the country. It is obvious from the current group of thieves having the lowest rating of any in history that there indeed is no confidence in the group except by the oligarchs who bankroll their campaigns against the United States.
 
 
+3 # Luis Emilio 2012-12-12 04:12
Zepp: "American law is based on rights,[...]"
There is another possibility: If we think of a society as a machine, the laws are the rules that (like the oil) that permits the machine to work as harmoniously as possible. The only thing, this machine changes over time; when a new type of objects appear, like the corporation, or the computer, then new rules are necessary that refers specifically to those objects.
However, the rule, cannot be arbitrary (example: everybody has to get up at 7:00 AM), the rules have to be based on something else that would give the rule some legitimacy, and moral is a common bases for the law. But the law is not the same as the law: a moral principle will not become a law unless it helps the society to function properly.
 
 
+154 # davidr 2012-12-11 14:03
In law, marriage is a contract, not a sacrament. It's irrelevant what objections may arise from religious or social tradition. It's irrelevant how others may view the parties.

There are a few, specific theories under which contracts may not be recognized (e.g., incompetence, duress, lack of consideration, improper purpose, etc.) None of those theories arises in a same sex marriage contract, except (so the opponents would say) the PURPOSE of it.

What could the purpose of marriage be that renders it improper for people of the same sex? The purpose of heterosexual erotic relations? No. Men and women who don't intend to have sex together can marry. For that matter, so can homosexuals of different sexes. The purpose of procreation? No. People who cannot or wish not to have children can marry. Other purposes? Child rearing, ratifying personal commitment, declaring a place in the community, establishing economic terms. None of them is the exclusive province of a male-female union.

In fact, tradition — generally religious tradition — is all that precludes same sex marriage. But tradition is not self-defending. When challenged, it has to offer a legally cognizable rationale. Otherwise, it's just prejudice (bigotry, as Tomasky says). If tradition cannot articulate some purpose of marriage beyond rote tradition itself, some purpose that would be transgressed in a contract by a same sex couple, then tradition must give way to judgment.
 
 
+21 # vicnada 2012-12-11 19:50
This is one of the most lucid renderings I have heard of this in the mountains I have read in the past years. Concise, direct and to-the-point! Thank you and may you soon replace Scalia.
 
 
+90 # lisamoskow 2012-12-11 14:20
Scalia is a thug and should be impeached.
 
 
+109 # brux 2012-12-11 14:31
I think Scalia is just a maggot. How a slimebag like him, not to mention Clarence Thomas ... both of these evolutionary throwbacks were given us by Reagan/Bush, got on the Supreme Court has more to do with how much they follow the agenda of the money that put them there than any legal or philosophical principle ... they are both insults to the idea of justice and the United States of America.
 
 
+50 # ansleypk@aol.com 2012-12-11 16:37
We know that Thomas got there because of AFFIRMATIVE ACTION, which he now denounces.
 
 
+14 # Independentgal 2012-12-11 19:18
Yes --- and let's not forget Alito is part of the team.
 
 
+94 # ganymede 2012-12-11 14:34
We seem to be slowly coming out of a dark period in our history. The question is how on earth did people like Scalia, Alito and even Kennedy and Roberts ever get appointed to the Supreme Court, or for that matter how did Bush ever get to be president. We're not out of the dung yet because 47% of the voters went for Romney. It's crystal clear that we have in Obama someone who is capable of bringing about great reform, but it's going to be up to us to hold his feet to the fire on every critical issue that comes up over the next four years.
 
 
-14 # WestWinds 2012-12-11 15:28
I wouldn't hold my breath on Obama. You forget: He's a DLC-er, a corporatist, and someone who graduated law school and went straight to U. Chicago, like lemmings to the sea, home of the Friedman brothers and trickle-down economy. He's also a war hawk who believes in "clean coal" and "austerity" according to his G-summit tours. I guess there are still people who believe you can make a silk purse from a sow's ear...
 
 
+10 # LML 2012-12-11 17:27
"Hold his feet to the fire??

What leverage do we have? He just got re-elected...wh at do we have that he might want?
 
 
+27 # KittatinyHawk 2012-12-11 18:46
Electing Democrats to Congress. Perhaps if we woke up, a major boycott
 
 
+13 # Lolanne 2012-12-12 07:46
Quoting KittatinyHawk:
Electing Democrats to Congress. Perhaps if we woke up, a major boycott


Yes, absolutely, KH. We've GOT to get the revolting reps/TPers out of office! And we have to regain control of our state governments as well. The a**h***s are decimating state governments so that they work only for the already wealthy and the corporations, NOT for the people who elected them.
 
 
+12 # Lolanne 2012-12-12 07:43
Quoting LML:
"Hold his feet to the fire??

What leverage do we have? He just got re-elected...what do we have that he might want?


We do it by making lots of noise, LML. Write letters -- the old fashioned kind, on paper they actually have to hold in their hands and look at. I want the White House inundated with mail, buried under an avalanche of it!

I still sign petitions and send email as well, but I really believe nothing carries as much weight as good, old-fashioned, letter-writing in getting the attention of government officials.
 
 
+24 # ganymede 2012-12-11 19:00
I forgot to include in my last comment any mention of Clarence Thomas. He's as rotten and corrupt as Scalia and a huge insult to all black Americans. He was pushed onto the Court by a conservative white senator, John Danforth from Missouri who called Thomas the most qualified Black juror in America. Thomas' lies under oath during the Anita Hill hearings were unbelievable, and his conflicts of interest in many cases would have had him impeached if he were't black. The two appointments that Obama's made have been excellent and this is one area where I have full confidence that there will be no rightwing appointments by Obama.
 
 
+10 # Lolanne 2012-12-12 07:40
Quoting ganymede:
We seem to be slowly coming out of a dark period in our history. The question is how on earth did people like Scalia, Alito and even Kennedy and Roberts ever get appointed to the Supreme Court, or for that matter how did Bush ever get to be president. We're not out of the dung yet because 47% of the voters went for Romney. It's crystal clear that we have in Obama someone who is capable of bringing about great reform, but it's going to be up to us to hold his feet to the fire on every critical issue that comes up over the next four years.


That has been my mantra for the past year, ganymede: get Obama re-elected and then hold his feet to the fire! Our elected officials only act in our interests if we demand it, and dammit, I demand it!

They need to hear from us clearly and frequently, so there can be no misunderstandin g as to what we want of them: government FOR THE PEOPLE, NOT for the wealthy, the corporations, and the insane fringe elements of society!
 
 
+1 # tapelt 2012-12-14 05:46
I would say that the real question is how on earth did people like Scalia, Alito and even Kennedy and Roberts ever passed a bar exam. Do they know what the Lemon test is? Have they even heard of it?

Somebody please give me a secular purpose for outlawing gay marriage. Show me the properly done peer reviewed scientific studies that document the harm caused to society from it. Otherwise, you have no justification for such a law.
 
 
+14 # suzyskier 2012-12-11 14:54
Yes please, impeach him before he does any more damage.
 
 
+76 # freeportguy 2012-12-11 15:04
As far as I'm concerned, gay marriage passes the one test typically used by Scalia, aka the "broccoli test": gay marriage would not be forced on anyone.

Scalia can't change the goal posts as the wind blows!
 
 
+72 # dloehr 2012-12-11 15:39
Justice Scalia is powerful evidence of the harm the Catholic Church has done around the world. The Church simply may not claim moral authority in any area involving women, children, or sex. They are areas in which the Fathers are destructively ignorant. Up against the wall, the Church has shown in its nearly hysterical response to worldwide outrage over priestly pederasty that patriarchy is more sacred to them than children, safety, abuse of power, or a level of morality to which only they seem systemically blind. If they can't see and feel the deep wrongness of sexual abuse of children by their priests -- which their own records show goes back to the first century -- they are more dangerous than Neo-Nazis and other psychopaths. Their self-pleasing blindness is a systemic psychopathology .
 
 
-2 # KittatinyHawk 2012-12-11 18:52
Do not blame Catholic Church for the hypocrites who put it down
I have net a lot more scum in other 'Religions" than Catholic
Perhaps we should alsop stop the bs racism about pedophiles being Catholic I am one as is many I know I went to Catholic School and we were not raped by Nuns or priests so grow up Perhaps a look at who has been playing with children, and those political bathroom divers Funny thing they were not Catholics. I believe there are cases against Rabbis pending
Keep your unintelligent racist remarks to yourself...Must spend hours digging thru trash, probably a hypocrite to boot
How are your mirrors today, covered up?
 
 
-1 # vicnada 2012-12-11 19:53
Amen!
 
 
-113 # MichaelSSmithNJ 2012-12-11 15:44
So if one does not approve a homosexuality it makes one a bigot? Homosexaual want to be able to marry for just one reason. Remember society says that you should not have sex until you are married. What they want is approval and acceptance of an abnormal sexual behavior and don't call me a biggot. To be a biggot one has to have a hatred of group based on thier race or religion or nationalty I do not in any way hate gay nor do I believe homosexujality is a sin because a sin is when someone does something bad to another person. I do believe however that homosexuals are sick though.
 
 
+62 # reiverpacific 2012-12-11 18:24
Quoting MichaelSSmithNJ:
So if one does not approve a homosexuality it makes one a bigot? Homosexaual want to be able to marry for just one reason. Remember society says that you should not have sex until you are married. What they want is approval and acceptance of an abnormal sexual behavior and don't call me a biggot. To be a biggot one has to have a hatred of group based on thier race or religion or nationalty I do not in any way hate gay nor do I believe homosexujality is a sin because a sin is when someone does something bad to another person. I do believe however that homosexuals are sick though.

As the proud and loving STRAIGHT father of a lesbian daughter, whom we allowed to come to the realization slowly and gradually, beginning with "Normal" dating, YOU ARE A BIGGOT (sic) and ignoramus -get used to it or do something about it -and check yer spelling occasionally.
"Sickness" emanates by declaiming unknowingly from a self-appointed platform on something you have no experience of, nor from your post, have any desire to acquire knowledge of.
Keep yer blinkers on but keep quiet until you know something from experience!
 
 
0 # fliteshare 2012-12-25 02:49
Ai ugri it shoot be spelt Bi-God almytee.
 
 
-11 # KittatinyHawk 2012-12-11 18:53
Closet Queen
 
 
+20 # MJnevetS 2012-12-11 19:09
Quoting MichaelSSmithNJ:
Remember society says that you should not have sex until you are married...I do believe that homosexuals are sick.
You are resorting to the same argument which the author has shown is constitutionall y faulty. When you say 'society says' you are actually saying 'my religion says' and your religion is not a legal basis to hinder someone's 'rights', as accurately stated by Zepp. In this case, in their 'pursuit of happiness', which Thomas Jefferson declared was one of our unalienable Rights (in the Declaration of Independence). In addition you claim 'homosexuals are sick'. What is your doctorate in? Or are you an M.D.? that couldn't be because either way, you would know that the American Psychological Association affirms THAT homosexuality is not a mental disorder (adopting the findings of the American Psychiatric Association, from 1973) So your statement of gays being 'sick' has no scientific basis. It is a judgmental statement bearing only on your own prejudice:

prej·u·dice n.

1. An adverse judgment or opinion formed beforehand or without knowledge or examination of the facts.
 
 
+15 # Lolanne 2012-12-12 07:55
Quoting MichaelSSmithNJ:
So if one does not approve a homosexuality it makes one a bigot? Homosexaual want to be able to marry for just one reason. Remember society says that you should not have sex until you are married. What they want is approval and acceptance of an abnormal sexual behavior and don't call me a biggot. To be a biggot one has to have a hatred of group based on thier race or religion or nationalty I do not in any way hate gay nor do I believe homosexujality is a sin because a sin is when someone does something bad to another person. I do believe however that homosexuals are sick though.


And what gives YOU the right to determine the reasons anyone has for wanting to get married? I believe most people get married because they love each other, or think they do. (Notice I preface that statement with "I believe"; I offer it as my belief or opinion only, not as an all-knowing pronouncement.)

I further believe that neither you nor anyone else has the right to determine anyone's reasons for wanting to get married.
 
 
+9 # lockerh 2012-12-12 10:54
Quoting MichaelSSmithNJ:
So if one does not approve a homosexuality it makes one a bigot? Homosexaual want to be able to marry for just one reason. Remember society says that you should not have sex until you are married. What they want is approval and acceptance of an abnormal sexual behavior and don't call me a biggot. To be a biggot one has to have a hatred of group based on thier race or religion or nationalty I do not in any way hate gay nor do I believe homosexujality is a sin because a sin is when someone does something bad to another person. I do believe however that homosexuals are sick though.


It's rare to find so much stupidity mingled with so much carelessness, self-contradict ion and hypocrisy. This quote is a gem, through and through.
 
 
+7 # countthevotes 2012-12-12 11:15
You're not a bigot, you're just entirely and painfully ignorant.
 
 
+22 # reiverpacific 2012-12-11 15:47
"Great man"[from the article]???? Scalia????
So were Jack the Ripper, Atilla the Hun and Hitler if you look at them in a certain light of notoriety.
 
 
+41 # Doll 2012-12-11 16:09
I read an article in the "Irish Times" some years ago. It was published in the 1990's.

In the article, it says that the Catholic church officiated at gay marriages from the time of the churches origin, in the 4th century, until the 18th century. Indeed, early on, they thought that the gays were closer to God because they were not gender bound, ie they were saints.

In the US, same sex marriages were allowed up to the 19th century.

The catholic church is wrong on both counts: Gays are neither the best of saints or the worst of sinners. They are people.
 
 
+24 # moafu@yahoo.com 2012-12-11 16:17
Mr. Tomasky,

The religious view of marriage is "what it is".....regardl ess of what non-religious people think. Bigotry ? That's a rather severe stretch of the concept to have such an accusation.

Consider this idea please. Only for the last few hundred years has government been in control of marriages by means of a license. Actually the very arrogance of government to require a "license" (for anything) is quite another topic.

Religions relinquished control over marriages to the governments by not resisting the laws that implemented a license to marry.

Whether same sex or different sex, the license is a civil matter with the government - not a religious matter with a Church, Mosque, Synagogue, or other religious org. The right to receive the license is a civil right. All people are equal before the law.

Truth is that government saw the activity of marriage, divorce, and dividing of estates as a means for taxation. Governments could not care less about the moral aspect of the issue.

Recognize the human right.
 
 
+44 # giraffee2012 2012-12-11 16:28
Abuse of power - and he is wined/dined (i.e. funded) by Koch brothers.
He's in his 70's so I hope he is forced to retire - any excuse will do and take Thomas with him.
 
 
+5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-12-11 18:55
Don't stop there I do feel those bros played lots of feely games, look at them
 
 
+9 # Independentgal 2012-12-11 19:22
And Alito too.
 
 
+18 # brux 2012-12-11 16:45
The thing is Scalia and all the other Neo-Cons, reactionaries, radical Republicans, Libertarians, do not fit into the political system in any way, except as a dodge from what they really stand for - which is nothing to do with making America better in any way - they all just seek to take what the country stands for down and replace it with nonsense-speak that just screws with everyone's heads. These people are the worst people in the world ... at least the Russians and Chinese are honest about hating the US and wanting to destroy us, the Neocons have to spend hundreds of billions on clever lying trying to make us think this is good for us.
 
 
+52 # brenda 2012-12-11 16:59
Scalia is not only a bigot, but he's also a lousy Supreme court judge for failing to recuse himself in matters that he has contrary opinion to, as well as his wife's agendas. Clarence Thomas is also a bad judge for the same reasons as Scalia.
 
 
+23 # Larry 2012-12-11 17:16
Entrenched, institutional discrimination against gays and lesbians is the defining civil rights issue of the twenty-first century, just as the struggle to end discrimination against blacks defined civil rights in the twentieth.

If patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel, so then religion would serve a bigot. Laws against interracial marriage grew out of bigotry, and were passed to the delight of the faithful, who sanctimoniously declared that by mans’ law, God's Will had been done.

Now, forty-five years after Loving vs. State of Virginia, in which the Supreme Court declared Virginia’s racially discriminatory law unconstitutiona l, how the current struggle for the equal rights of gays and lesbians seems deja vu.
 
 
+25 # margpark 2012-12-11 18:15
Being against same sex marriage is being against marriage. God knows since the pill came on line marriage itself has mattered less and less. One now marries for love, for the most part though there are always some self love marriages. And homsexuals love someone of the same sex and the rest of us love someone of the other sex. Of course homosexuals should be allowed to marry.
 
 
+18 # KittatinyHawk 2012-12-11 18:58
Homosexuality is not a problem. People like Scalia are
 
 
+7 # mighead 2012-12-11 19:32
Marriage needs to be inline with the rest the basic laws regarding discrimination...
i.e., without regard to religion, ethnic origins (race), gender, sexual preference, etc...
 
 
+9 # BostonPundit 2012-12-11 19:35
I want to respond to Mr. Tomasky's comment but first, quotes from Lawrence v. Texas

From Justice Kennedy's opinion:
"This, as a general rule, should counsel against attempts by the State, or a court, to define the meaning of the relationship or to set its boundaries absent injury to a person or abuse of an institution the law protects. It suffices for us to acknowledge that adults may choose to enter upon this relationship in the confines of their homes and their own private lives and still retain their dignity as free persons. When sexuality finds overt expression in intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element in a personal bond that is more enduring. The liberty protected by the Constitution allows homosexual persons the right to make this choice."
 
 
-7 # BostonPundit 2012-12-11 19:35
And again from Lawrence v. Texas

From Justice Scalia's opinion:
"Thus, while overruling the outcome of Bowers, the Court leaves strangely untouched its central legal conclusion: '[R]espondent would have us announce ... a fundamental right to engage in homosexual sodomy. This we are quite unwilling to do.' 478 U. S., at 191. "

and

"The Court embraces instead JUSTICE STEVENS' declaration in his Bowers dissent, that "'the fact that the governing majority in a State has traditionally viewed a particular practice as immoral is not a sufficient reason for upholding a law prohibiting the practice,'" This effectively decrees the end of all morals legislation.
Finally, I turn to petitioners' equal-protectio n challenge.... On its face § 21.06(a) applies equally to all persons. Men and women, heterosexuals and homosexuals, are all subject to its prohibition of deviate sexual intercourse with someone of the same sex. To be sure, § 21.06 does distinguish between the sexes insofar as concerns the partner with whom the sexual acts are performed: men can violate the law only with other men, and women only with other women. But this cannot itself be a denial of equal protection, since it is precisely the same distinction regarding partner that is drawn in state laws prohibiting marriage with someone of the same sex while permitting marriage with someone of the opposite sex."
 
 
-2 # BostonPundit 2012-12-11 19:43
I have posted portions of the opinion in Lawrence v. Texas. You can read the entire case at http://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/539/558/case.html

Let me say that although I think same sex marriage should be permitted (because it harms no one and allows people to do exactly what Justice Kennedy and Justice Stevens wrote) Justice Scalia's analysis is a purely legal one. I disagree with it but for a totally different reasons.

I don't think that religious freedom means the right to tell others what to do. If the Catholic church wishes to tell its members that in order to be considered good Catholics, they may not engage in gay marriage or sodomy or abortion, then it is up to the individual to decide if he or she wants to be a good Catholic in that way.

However, it is not the Catholic church's right to tell anyone else who is not a member of their religion what to do or to tell the state to prevent others from doing something simply because the Catholic church doesn't agree with it.

I do not see where Justice Scalia's comments are based on religious intolerance or bigoted.

We can disagree with him but it serves no purpose to vilify him in this way. I'd urge everyone including Mr. Tomasky to read the case anew.

Scalia's comment may well foreshadow that gay marriage will be upheld as a consensual act. If so, he did the proponents of gay marriage a favor.
 
 
+3 # robcarter.vn 2012-12-11 19:52
Why don't Gay lawyers take the opposite easier route, by simply submiting a case to the court to ban all discriminatory laws that grant to married couples what is not available to men who don't want a woman wife. That must be against the constitutional equality guarantee?
 
 
+1 # BostonPundit 2012-12-11 19:53
In fairness two more excerpts from Justice Scalia's opinion:

Let me be clear that I have nothing against homosexuals, or any other group, promoting their agenda through normal democratic means. Social perceptions of sexual and other morality change over time, and every group has the right to persuade its fellow citizens that its view of such matters is the best. That homosexuals have achieved some success in that enterprise is attested to by the fact that Texas is one of the few remaining States that criminalize private, consensual homosexual acts. But persuading one's fellow citizens is one thing, and imposing one's views in absence of democratic majority will is something else. I would no more require a State to criminalize homosexual acts-or, for that matter, display any moral disapprobation of them-than I would forbid it to do so. What Texas has chosen to do is well within the range of traditional democratic action, and its hand should not be stayed through the invention of a brand-new "constitutional right" by a Court that is impatient of democratic change. It is indeed true that "later generations can see that laws once thought necessary and proper in fact serve only to oppress," ante, at 579; and when that happens, later generations can repeal those laws. But it is the premise of our system that those judgments are to be made by the people, and not imposed by a governing caste that knows best.
 
 
0 # BostonPundit 2012-12-11 19:58
Last excerpt from Justice Scalia's opinion:

One of the benefits of leaving regulation of this matter to the people rather than to the courts is that the people, unlike judges, need not carry things to their logical conclusion. The people may feel that their disapprobation of homosexual conduct is strong enough to disallow homosexual marriage, but not strong enough to criminalize private homosexual acts-and may legislate accordingly.
More illuminating ... is the progression of thought displayed by an earlier passage ... [that] the constitutional protections afforded to "personal decisions relating to marriage, procreation, contraception, family relationships, child rearing, and education," and then declares that "[p]ersons in a homosexual relationship may seek autonoffmy for these purposes, just as heterosexual persons do." ....

If moral disapprobation of homosexual conduct is "no legitimate state interest" for purposes of proscribing that conduct, ante, at 578; and if, as the Court coos (casting aside all pretense of neutrality), "[w]hen

sexuality finds overt expression in intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element in a personal bond that is more enduring," what justification could there possibly be for denying the benefits of marriage to homosexual couples exercising "[t]he liberty protected by the Constitution,"
 
 
-1 # BostonPundit 2012-12-12 05:35
I hope that those who have read the excerpts from the Lawrence v. Texas case I posted realize that there is a lot more to the case than Mr. Tomasky says.

There is a legitimate disagreement among the judges as to both the legal standard to be applied to the analysis whether the particular statute is unconstitutiona l, i.e., the rational basis vs. strict scrutiny test, and whether the question that should be decided by the courts or by the legislature and, ultimately, the voters.

Justice Kennedy thought it involved rights secured by the Constitution, whereas Justice Scalia and those agreeing with him say historically this has been subject to legislation.

Calling Justice Scalia a bigot on that basis alone is unintelligent and unfair.

If there is evidence that he is bigoted based on something else he has said, go ahead and set it out.

I disagree with many of Justice Scalia's opinions and his positions on social issues.

However, even though at times I think he takes "nutty" positions on how the Constitution should be construed, his is a legitimate intellectual position and nothing new.

He asks, for example, if you had told the Founding Fathers "this Constitution doesn't mean what is written but what some judges in future say it means" would they have adopted it?

It is food for thought.

We don't have to call people names because we disagree with their positions.
 
 
+4 # Stuart McDonald 2012-12-12 08:00
Antonin Scalia will be a natural to play Ned Beatty's character in the remake of the movie 'Deliverance'. He's been squeeling with delight while getting porked by the filthy-rich and their lackeys, especially Catholic Church leaders, all his adult life. As Ronald Reagan once said when asked how it felt when he first voted Republican after being a Democrat previously: "It hurts for about a minute, but then it feels really good."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yj4LnfkdJDM&feature=share
 
 
+3 # lockerh 2012-12-12 10:45
Good for you, Michael Tomasky, for reaching your conclusion about your own (previous) bigotry.

Of course, if there IS a sanctity in marriage which is all about love, then same-gender lovers deserve the same sanctity. It is not just about legalities; it is about decency, about kindness, and about love.

Scalia's quote, “If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder?” misses the point.

If he were not such a totally awful person, he might have phrased it, "If we cannot have moral feelings in favor of love, can we have it in favor of homosexuality?"

But the fact remains that Scalia is indeed totally awful. (And I do not mean awesome; I mean awful.)

Bob Locke
 
 
+11 # Charles3000 2012-12-12 13:16
Five justices on the USSC broke their oath of office in the bush v gore decision in 2000 and could be impeached for that. The fact they looked at the contestants and not at the law is actually written down in Scalia's stop count order.
 
 
+2 # LAellie33 2012-12-14 00:13
I M P E A C H SCALIA, THE BIGOT
 
 
0 # ghostperson 2012-12-14 14:14
Bigot? Try crazy asshole.
 
 
0 # LAellie33 2012-12-15 13:30
Maybe you can post this one.......re: "Scalia is Just a Bigot."
And bigots must not be on the Supreme Court! Period. End of story.
 
 
0 # kibitzer 2012-12-15 21:25
I am almost amused by all the liberals on this thread going after Scalia and the conservatives on the SCOTUS for not adhering to "the rule of law". And what have the liberals and their 'activist judges' been doing for years??? I am thinking right now of pots and kettles.

I say "almost" amused. Because it is, really, no laughing matter.

Michael, if Scalia is a bigot, you're a hypocrite. Wear it.
 

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