Unschooling to College, Citizenship, Moral Force, Marriage Rights

18 04 2009

Some interesting power of story arguments in the speech below, that we haven’t been hearing much from this perspective — food for thought wherever you (and your older children) stand.

My two, especially always-unschooled Favorite Daughter who just turned 19, are passionate and pretty sophisticated in their politics. We talk and read and write about such things a lot. And now in these last two weeks before community college graduation, FavD is acting as Chief Justice of SCOTUS in her honors national government class moot court, presiding over five cases drawn from reality but set in The Simpsons’ cartoon town of Springfield.

All the other participants are rotating as justices and lawyers from case to case, but she is the constant. She’s finding that she knows enough to be pretty active in the questioning, connecting cases and principles that weren’t in the materials and no one else brought up.

A Pentagon Papers-type freedom of the press case was first; yesterday was same-sex marriage rights; abortion will be the fifth and final because they need to be more experienced first to tackle that, I guess. Or they’ll never want to see each other again afterward, so better to have it the last day!

The dean of the history and social sciences department was invited to observe yesterday for the marriage case, and caught FavD afterward to compliment her work, and ask how she had known to rebut a lawyer’s sudden oral claim (that civil rights changes could only come about by constitutional amendment) by using an education example, Brown v. Board of Education and even giving the year it was decided, “in 1954” — she said she was a geek and he said that was a good thing. 🙂

Anyway, while she was reasoning through marriage rights in her way, Steve Schmidt and the Log Cabin Republicans were doing the same in theirs.
JJ

Steve Schmidt’s Address to the Log Cabin Republicans (Transcript)

This is the text of John McCain’s campaign manager Steve Schmidt’s address to the Log Cabin Republicans today. During the speech he strongly urged the GOP to support gay marriage:

It can be argued according to the creeds and convictions of religious belief, which I respect.

But it cannot be argued that marriage between people of the same sex is un-American or threatens the rights of others. On the contrary, it seems to me that denying two consenting adults of the same sex the right to form a lawful union that is protected and respected by the state denies them two of the most basic natural rights affirmed in the preamble of our Declaration of Independence – liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That, I believe, gives the argument of same sex marriage proponents its moral force.

. . .Whether you are for or against same sex marriages, every Republican ought to value the right of people to make such personal decisions for themselves. As former Vice President Cheney observed, freedom means freedom for everybody. And I think Republicans should always be on the side of freedom and equal rights.

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5 responses

18 04 2009
JJ

Wouldn’t it be fun to see Pastor Rick Warren debate Steve Schmidt on this??

Not at Saddleback Church though, not fair. He’d have to, um, “come out” and debate this marriage equality American issue on equal footing. In the secular marketplace of ideas. 😉

20 04 2009
Betty Malone

Wow, will Steve Schmidt ever work for another Republican candidate. I’m pretty impressed with his brave wisdom on this issue. Go Steve!

20 04 2009
JJ

Apparently he has a gay sister, and he believes that as more people become aware of their own gay relatives and friends, and see them in committed relationships, that it’s only a matter of time before Rs and even RRs change their own thinking. Meghan McCain is taking the same stand. So I think they have the “right” idea and culture change really is in the air.

OTOH, “Dick Cheney’s lesbian daughter” as Kerry infamously referred to her in his last presidential debate, doesn’t seem to have turned the tide yet. What about Ronald Reagan’s son, not Michael but the other one, can’t recall, was he gay too?

23 04 2009
JJ

I guess it’s a good thing for the seriousness of their academic efforts, that the flap with Miss California and Perez Hilton didn’t happen until that night! 😉

25 04 2009
JJ

This from a gay rights author/activist comes close to how I see it:

But let us recall that Miss CA’s beliefs weren’t privately held; they were publicly offered. And she was offering up her privately held beliefs in an attempt to win what is, essentially, a popularity contest.

No contestant would stand on that stage and argue for a ban on interracial marriage or come to the defense of a country club that banned Jewish members.

Anti-gay attitudes — whatever motivates them — are increasingly less popular. No contestant would stand on that stage and argue for a ban on interracial marriage or come to the defense of a country clubs that banned Jewish members or condemn single mothers. All those positions were once considered thoroughly respectable, and people could argue for them on TV — pundits, candidates, beauty pageant contestants — without fear or repercussion. Not true today.

It’s not that there are racial thought police, or anti-Semitic thought police, or single-mom thought police. It’s just that times and attitudes change.

We’re not there yet on gay issues, but we’re clearly getting there. And that’s progress. No one has to like gay people or approve of us. But we’re headed toward a time when advocating for anti-gay discrimination — which is what she did — she said that only “opposite marriage” should be legal — won’t win you any popularity contests.

And to shore up this view as accurate, the anti-gay-rights “marriage defender” activist at that same link now calls Miss CA a heroine who “chose truth over the tiara” with “great personal courage,” just for daring to say what so recently was the ONLY thing anyone could say in public, until true civil rights heroes like Harvey Milk showed us what real courage is — he DIED (in California ironically enough, the state she purports to “represent”) for saying openly and quite as civilly as she, what he believed and lived. Let’s hope Miss CA never faces any such real attack, and reserve such hero talk unless and until she does.

Point is, the worm indeed must be turning. . .

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