Sunday, March 8, 2009

California (XLVIII) Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez

Today I continue with Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, Democrat, representative of California's 47th Congressional District:

Dear Congresswoman Sanchez,

I write seeking your support for a Marriage Equality Amendment that would recognize the right of same-sex couples to marry throughout the United States. Such an amendment would read: "The right to marry shall not be abridged or denied by the United States or any state on account of sex or sexual orientation." As a long-serving legislator with a robust record of defending civil and human rights, I hope that you will lend this reform your voice and your authority.

You have long shown yourself sympathetic to the cause of marriage equality, having voted twice against the execrable so-called "Marriage Protection Amendment" and having received consistently high positive ratings from the Human Rights Campaign. In the last election your Republican challenger, Rosie Avila, tried to make your past support for marriage equality an issue, linking her campaign to a call for passage of Proposition 8 banning same-sex marriage in California. Though Ms. Avila's tactics did not ultimately succeed, the passage of Proposition 8 showed how well-financed the forces of discrimination are and how much traction this appeal to social prejudice may afford unscrupulous politicians within our political process.

A Marriage Equality Amendment would be the surest and most durable means to secure the rights of millions of Americans now unjustly excluded from the marriage bond. It would also deprive opportunists of the chance to exploit this issue for momentary political gain. Please contemplate advocating for this change to our basic laws among your colleagues and constituents. In any case I thank you for your attention on this matter and hope that this letter find you well.


Andrew Meyer


VRae said...

Political gain? I don't think so. Marriage amendment is a hot issue and most stay away from it as the result. Three cheers to Rosie for putting her values and views out where everyone can know them, despite possible political harm to her own candidacy. It won, she didn't, but the marriage amendment had nothing to do with the fact she ran with a few thousand dollars against Loretta's millions (largely funded by the pornography industry ... another subject).

Why do folks that are anti-prop 8 continue to pretend that prop 8 people are "prejudiced?" This, despite continued reasoned arguments by prop 8 supporters that it is not about prejudice?? Where marriage has been made legal for homosexuals (which WOULD require a state constitutional amendment) there has been proven increase in crime, teen pregnancy, drug use, and more, without exception. Marriage between a man and woman is basic to the health and well being of a nation. Gays can have more equal rights than I, as a single mom, in civil unions. There are two views on this. It has nothing to do with prejudice so please stop using your victim mentality for political gain. It's really very ugly. Thanks,

Madman of Chu said...


To argue that Rosie Avila and other Republican candidates did not enjoy political gain from Proposition 8 is tendentious. The fact that she lost is no proof that she didn't see gain. Nationally, Repubican candidates have made a lot of political hay by stumping against marriage equality. I've written over 70 members of Congress by now and I have found very few Republicans who stayed away from it because it was a "hot issue."

Much of your argument is incomprehensible and self-contradictory. As a single mother you have the right to marry, which thanks to Proposition 8 same-sex couples do not. Thus ipso facto your claim about having less "equal rights [sic]" is simply wrong.

Moreover, you undermine your assertion that opposition to Prop 8 may be unprejudiced by deploying rhetoric flagrantly betraying your own prejudice. Making up false statistics is an age-old tactic of bigots. The Netherlands, which instituted full marriage equality in 1998, has seen declining crime rates (which were already much lower than the U.S.). It also has one of the lowest abortion rates in Europe. Massachusetts has one of the lowest divorce rates in the Union. This notion that marriage equality will produce a domino effect of social evils is a wholesale canard that has never held up under empirical scrutiny.

All of the "unprejudiced" arguments you deploy were once forwarded in defense of "anti-miscegenation" laws banning marriage between people of different race. "The health and well-being" of society would be sacrificed if interracial marriage were allowed, so it was said. We obviously have a healthier society now than we did when interracial marriage was banned in much of the country, and we will have a healthier society still when marriage equality expands to encompass the thousands of same-sex couples that want to be able to form fully legally protected families.