The dirty lie costumed as LET THE PEOPLE VOTE has had a similar velocity and driverless momentum. So far, one candidate each for governor and now one for lieutenant have the morality and courage to speak the truth on the shameful anti-SSM amendment.
That truth as Deval Patrick said and Andrea Silbert just joined in on NECN's Newsnight, the majority does not and should not have the right to vote on the rights of any minority.
The other candidates all fall in the let-the-people-vote camp. That is a very comfortable campaign position. They get to pretend they are for democracy, as though civil rights should be on the town meeting agenda. (Oh, we don't like this group. Let's take away their rights.)
Oddly enough, on the Newsnight session, the three Democratic looey candidates all calim to be for SSM and have solid lefty and gay-friendly records. When asked, Deb Goldberg and Tim Murray both said the amendment should be put to a vote at the November Constitutional Convention.
That is likely to happen and because it only requires a 25% vote (50 members ) of the combined General Court, it is likely to drag out for another year. It is also likely to lose at next year's ConCon.
All the candidates and the legislative leaders need to be saying right now that civil rights are not for plebiscites.
Distressed disclaimer: We endorse Murray and am sorry that he hasn't gotten this yet.
On Newsnight, Silbert was a standout on this issue. She replied, "I think this issue has been settled. It was settled by the courts. We need to move on. So, no"
That is a good answer, but incomplete. Bay Windows followed up with her and reported on her expansion. That too is imcomplete, but better.
She iterated that the SJC had decided this issue. "It really concerns me that the way our system is set up we have checks and balances and the majority is not to vote on various things that take rights away from the minority. So that is my big concern with this ballot amendment."
Silbert would not go as far as to say parliamentary procedures would be okay to dispose of the amendment. "I’m not going to get into the procedures," she said. "I think the big issue that we’ve got to talk about is the courts have ruled. We’ve got to move on. MassEquality’s position is that it shouldn’t go forward and I echo that position. I think that the court has ruled, this has come forward once before, they’re putting it forward yet again and I don’t see that it needs to move forward any further. I think that the issue has been done and resolved."
She added that the anti-SSM side confused this civil-rights issue and overplayed the procedural aspects, which she would like to avoid. Instead, she emphasized the checks-and-balances nature of SSM. "We do have the courts here to protect us from the tyranny of the majority."
She remains a bit timid about follow-through. We say that the top two Democratic candidates from the primary must add strong calls for the next legislative session to:
- Ensure that we refine the ballot-initiative process so that we never again let the majority vote on the rights of a minority.
- Repeal those shameful 1913 vestiges of racism that prevent out-of-staters from marrying here if that conflicts with their local laws.
Tags: massmarrier, Massachusetts, amendment, same sex marriage, Andrea Silbert, Bay Windows, ConCon