Like Dracula rising from the grave with the wooden stake still plunged in his heart, the Marriage Discrimination Amendment (currently styled as HJR3) has returned for a summer rerun. The special session of the Indiana General Assembly, called by Governor Mitch Daniels to deal with passage of a state budget, was presented with this proverbial rotten egg this week by State Representatives Eric Turner (R-Marion) and Dave Cheatham (D –North Vernon).
Now, with schools in turmoil –laying off teachers and unable to make the millions in budget cuts forced by this session, with cities such as Muncie having to cut 32 firefighters and five police, and with the jobless situation in Indiana at an unacceptably high rate, I can see why these .. uhm.. "gentlemen" think that banning what doesn't exist is crucial. "Why, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, there's gays out there about to get hitched and they're coming your way, Indiana!"
Really guys, are you so nuts as to think that ANY Hoosier rates this as the top issue to be dealt with in the special session? Wait, you’re the legislature that declared sugar cream pie our official pie instead of getting a budget passed. I forgot. A little Mrs. Wick's goes a long way, eh?
And now comes news that Governor Mark Sanford (SC), who was reputedly thinking of seeking the Presidency in 2012, is joining his fellow Republican Senator John Ensign (NV) in admitting to having an extra-marital affair. Hm, I think these guys beating up on gay and lesbian families doth protest too much. Wait, maybe they're right! Now that six states – count'm SIX (one of the numbers in 666 – sign of the anti-Christ, doncha know!) – have allowed gay marriage, it IS having an effect on ALL marriages. Why politicians of every stripe are breaking out in the horizontal mamba with foreign women and employees for goodness sake!! (New York Democratic Governor Eliot Spitzer at least had the decency to resign.) It must be due to all that gay and lesbian influence in the marriage pool! We need some strong bleach in the Hoosier political pool before it affects some of our own representatives. Cheatham and Turner may have a great idea here – think they doubt their colleagues' chastity and fidelity perhaps?
Of course, that was an example of snark for those of you for whom I was too subtle. Look, this is the regular sop to the right-wingers of the Indiana Family Institute, which is already promoting this move and raising funds from it while admitting it has a snowball's chance in Indy.
The Unholy Trinity of Curt Smith, Micah Clark, Eric Miller and their alcolytes want you to think that Hoosier gay and lesbian couples and families are a huge threat to American morality as well as the fabric of the American family. They would rather look to an amorphous "other" enemy to bind their own fractured followers behind a cohesive strategy on taxes, than to deal with issues head on. (How taxes became a religious or moral issue is beyond me – don't you also want fire protection and police in Muncie or schools across the state?)
Please help Indiana Equality Action to stop this nonsense one more time – take a moment from your vacation and email House Speaker Pat Bauer – firstname.lastname@example.org or to call 1-800-382-9842 toll free and speak with your own State Representative. Tell them to stick to the agenda of getting the people's work done. I know I've called mine.