The Same-Sex Marriage Zeitgeist

I struck up an Internet friendship with artist and art reviewer Maureen Mullarkey back in the early days of blogging, begun with an initial contact concerning our agreement about same-sex marriage. That agreement has apparently plunged her into chilling circumstances:

Strange times we live in when it takes a ballot initiative to confirm the definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Stranger still when endorsing that definition through the democratic process brings threats and reprisals.
In November, the San Francisco Chronicle published the names and home addresses of everyone who donated money in support of California’s Proposition 8 marriage initiative. All available information, plus the amount donated, was broadcast. My name is on that list.
Emails started coming. Heavy with epithets and ad hominems, most in the you-disgust-me vein. Several accused me, personally, of denying the sender his single chance at happiness after a life of unrelieved oppression and second-class citizenship. Some were anonymous but a sizable number were signed, an indication of confidence in collective clout that belied howls of victimhood. New York’s Gay City News asked for an interview because I was “one of only four New Yorkers who contributed more than $500.”
I ignored the request, trashed the emails, and forgot about them. But the West Coast bureau chief of the New York Daily News did not forget.

The ensuing experiences included finding two men waiting at her apartment to “interview” her one night, receiving promises of professional retribution, and the implicit intimidation that comes with having one’s home address published with the tone of “make the bitch pay.”
For some, it seems, marriage is not so much about love as about self-validation and an expression of power. Whatever proves true of the former, we ought not expect the latter to be tempered by victory.

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Pearl
12 years ago

I admire Maureen. So much.
Maureen Mullarkey Responds

Harold
Harold
12 years ago

the American Family Assoc has organized two boycots
1. A boycot of Ford Motors
Ford’s “crime” they advertised in The Advocate, a Gay Publication
2, McDonalds, their “crime”, McDonalds joined the Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce

Pearl
12 years ago

Hmmm . . . I have a hard time believing that a boycott organized by AFA can be compared, with a straight face (no pun intended), to the backlash of threats, intimidation, demonization, and general vitriol, profanity, and slander that has been hurled at Mullarkey.
Buuuuuut, I’m willing to listen. So please, prove to me that the grannies and SAHM’s of the AFA have been sending death threats to McDonald’s execs, stalking them at their homes, and emailing them standard boycott language such as “Die B—- and go to H—!”
Yeah. Lousy comparison. That one gets a big, fat F.

Harold
Harold
12 years ago

Pearl
I was not,comparing anything..Did i say i was?
90% of McDonalds and Ford dealerships are owned by small businessmen and woman
Why should they,and their workers suffer financialy
Did Ms Mullarkey suffer financialy?
and are you sure her “story” is 100% true?
it could be “right-wing” mularkey
like “IRAQ HAS WMD”

Chairm
Chairm
12 years ago

Harold, what, then, was the unstated point of your first comment?
And which part of Maureen’s story would you have cause to deny?
Thanks.

Pearl
12 years ago

“Why should they,and their workers suffer financialy”
Why thank you, Harold. Thank you very much for defending the manager and employees at El Coyote. They should not be suffering from the boycott homosexual activists have imposed on the restaurant due to the manager’s donation to the Yes on 8 campaign. Thank you for championing them, too.
And thank you for defending Scott Eckern, who lost his job over his donation to Prop 8. Surely he should not be suffering financially just for taking a stand and lending his finances to his beliefs. Oh, and let’s not forget Richard Raddon. He, too, would be grateful to know that you are against the idea of boycott based solely on his “crime” of donating to Prop 8.
Yes, Harold, Maureen’s “story”, as you qualify it, is true. It is not a conspiracy. Besides the fact that Maureen has physical evidence of being maligned, if this “story” is not true, then why is the homosexual community so up-in-arms over it?
And Chairm asks a good question:
“which part of Maureen’s story would you have cause to deny?”

rhody
rhody
12 years ago

There’s been boycotting and threats on both sides of this issue (I avoid Mickey D’s as much as the American Family Association, but over an entirely different issue).
Personally, I don’t believe in boycotts as a tactic, because I’m more likely to patronize a business that is being boycotted by the opposing side of an issue I feel strongly about. I’m sure people on the opposite side from me on this issue feel the same way, too.

Harold
Harold
12 years ago

What happened to Ms Mullarkey does not compare to
Harvey Milk…Murdered
Matthew Shepard…Murdered
The bombing of a gay bar in Atlanta by a right-wing zelot
In New Bedford MA, Jacob Robida walked into a bar,asked the bartener “is this a gay bay” when the answer was yes. The right-wingnut SHOT three gay guys
(all 3 survived sorry to disapoint you Pearl)
Not to mention the thousans of gay kids
who are asaulted every day
Go to the comments page at the AFA website for some REAL HATEFUL stuf, or right here at Anchor Rising,coments by Mike,Mike C, Tom,and other wingnuts real mean crap
or check out the right-wing website
GodHatesFags.com by the Westboro Christian Baptist Church

Chairm
Chairm
12 years ago

Harold, so you’d declare that the anti-8 political zealots get a pass because of the list of items unrelated to Proposition 8 that you just wrote in your latest comment?
Because … those with whom you disagree on the marriage amendment deserve to be targets of reprisals and vengeance-seeking?
That is the unstated point of your first comment?

Pearl
12 years ago

Harold, allow me to summarize what you’ve stated. If I get this wrong, by all means, feel free to jump in here.
You presume that because I descry the actions of homosexual activists in attempting to vilify, intimidate, and threaten a woman based solely on her democratic right to donate to a cause she believes in . . . I, therefore, must be disappointed by various unsuccessful murder attempts on homosexuals lives?
“all 3 survived sorry to disapoint you Pearl
That’s a leap.
Again, I echo Chairm’s latest question. What exactly was the point of your first comment here if not to downplay and justify the inappropriate actions of the gay community?

Justin Katz
12 years ago

That’s quite an equivalence between broad attacks by nutjobs and a targeted campaign against specific individuals facilitated by an actual blacklist. Even if we accept the comparison, though, my concern increases that the implementation of same-sex marriage will embolden this element.

rhody
rhody
12 years ago

No more so than the defeat of same-sex marriage emboldens those who oppose it.
It’s an emotional issue, to be sure. Here’s another way of looking at it:
How many people who support same-sex marriage consider opposition to it a disqualifying issue? Hell, I just voted for a president who opposes same-sex marriage.
How many people who oppose same-sex marriage automatically disqualify a candidate who supports it, even if they agree with the candidate on every other major issue?

Pearl
12 years ago

Restoring a centuries-old, time-tested definition is not “emboldening”, Rhody, it is a relief. The term embolden, would suggest continuing agenda. Correct me if I am wrong, but when has affirming the definition of marriage between one man and one woman EVER in history resulted in later attempts to strip other groups of Constitutionally protected freedoms (i.e. Mormons being disallowed to vote)? It hasn’t. And it won’t, because to those in America who have a good understanding of our Constitution, it is painfully obvious that homosexual marriage, indeed marriage in general, is not a right. It is a privilege regulated by government for the protection of children and society, then afforded to all men and women equally. Anyone willing to abide by the standards, the regulations outlined by the people, any heterosexual or homosexual, may marry. If one chooses not to abide by the standards, such as choosing instead to unite with someone of the same sex, they exclude themselves from this great privilege. They are not “being excluded.” What I feel if you must know, is a strong desire to preserve society from malignant, unhealthy redefinition. There is no doubt in my mind that a couple of homosexuals can provide for children just as well as a couple of heterosexuals. PROVIDE. But while their temporal needs are met (food, clothing, roof-over-head), children will not THRIVE in such an environment because they lack an opposite sex parent upon which to model appropriate behavior as they grow and encounter various social situations. What it ultimately creates is a confused, genderless society, one in which gender differences are not even acknowledged let alone praised and nurtured. This is not an emotional issue. That is what homosexuals want it to be. That is what buys them sympathy and votes. When approached with reason and… Read more »

rhody
rhody
12 years ago

Gee, Pearl, I didn’t realize Mormons were ever denied the right to vote. I guess it wasn’t included in those history textbooks designed to pass muster with the Texas Department of Education.
If the thought of gays being able to demonstrate the same commitment to their partners that heteros do throws off your equilibrium that much…chill. Relax. Listen to some soothing music. Maybe some Liberace, or Elton John, or k.d. lang.

Pearl
12 years ago

Rhody, you did not read my comment carefully. I did not say Mormons had been denied their right to vote. In fact, I said the exact opposite. You see, homosexual activists erroneously claim that by stripping gays’ so-called “right” to marriage, we would essentially be setting a precedent to strip other minorities’ “rights” by a majority vote. Slippery slope argument. However, marriage has espoused regulatory limitations for thousands of years (i.e. no brothers/sisters, no children married to adults, etc.), and still our defense of natural marriage has never, ever yielded an assault on a minority groups’ rights. Jews, Mormons, Goths, etc. have never been denied their Constitutionally protected right to vote based on the thousand-year precedent of defending natural marriage. So why would defending marriage now suddenly make that change? Each individual’s answer to that question depends on whether they believe marriage is a “right.” Due to an increasing sense of entitlement in our society, the definition of a right – a God-given, Constitutionally protected right – has been skewed. Freedom of speech is a right. Freedom of religion is a right. Freedom to bear arms is a right. Marriage is not even mentioned in the Constitution. Instead, four activist judges somehow saw fit to “interpret” the Constitution’s “pursuit of happiness” phrase and Equal Protection Clause to mean that homosexuals had a right to marry. Obviously, the people did not agree that those judges interpreted the Constitution correctly. And so we amended the Constitution to clarify. Constitution of the United States, Preamble: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union . . . promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” We’ve reset the… Read more »

rhody
rhody
12 years ago

Because people are people, no matter what their sexual orientation. And given the static they face from the moment they step out of the closet (or are forced out against their will), why would anyone choose to be gay?

Pearl
12 years ago

I never said they chose to be gay, now did I? But they certainly chose to act on those attractions and desires. Just as any and every one of us ofttimes chooses the wrong course when we come to a fork in the road. In the end, Rhody, it doesn’t mean my bad decisions deserve special recognition or exception. And neither do theirs. Not when it affects children.

Justin Katz
12 years ago

The tangent doesn’t really apply directly to the marriage debate, but the “why would they choose to be gay” argument shows a severe lack of insight. Our society celebrates homosexuals; even when the popular culture isn’t showing them as the well-balanced counterparts to dysfunctional straight friends and families, it offers homosexuality as a ticket to “protected minority” status.

Pearl
12 years ago

The poor, picked-on heroes. You’re right, Rhody, those “Queer Eye For the Straight Guy” dudes receive so much static for their homosexuality. *rolling eyes*
And what of all the homosexuals dominating fashion television? In fact, I do believe one even “mentioned” that in a comment to Maureen:
“Homosexuals rule the World of Creativity, and that is whom you just f–ed with! . . . . May God bless you with financial ruin for your treacherous deed.”
I find it especially ironic that the “treacherous deed” alluded to is, in fact, a democratic act. Black is white and white is black. Our world is all topsy turvey.

Chairm
Chairm
12 years ago

Rhody: How many people who oppose same-sex marriage automatically disqualify a candidate who supports it, even if they agree with the candidate on every other major issue?
When the marriage issue is voted on by the electorate as a single issue, rather than one blurred in a multi-issue candidate campaign with lots of trade-offs, more liberals and moderates, combined, have voted for state ballot measures than have conservatives.
Likewise, more Democrats and Indpendents than Republicans.
There are good reasons to decide some matters on focussed, single-issue, campaigns.
And good reasons to elect candidates on multiple-issue campaigns for office.

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