Your one-stop gay marriage opinion clearinghouse!

I am a little wary of Bleakonomy morphing into an "all gay marriage, all the time" site. For those of you who read Andrew Sullivan, you know that it gets kind of tedious to loyally follow a blogger who gets on a tear and seems hell-bent on talking about some pet subject over and over and over. (And over.) In Sully's case, it tends to vary over time, from Sarah Palin to pot legalization to torture, and some topics are more worthy than others. (That last one deserves all the scrutiny it can get. The first two, maybe not so much as Sully likes to devote.) Anyhow, if it gets old when a wildly successful blogger like Andrew Sullivan does it, what right do picayune little blogs like ours have?

After worrying about this for a few minutes, I decided "to hell with it." If some other member of an oppressed minority suddenly saw a massive form of discrimination dissolving right before his eyes, we wouldn't begrudge him a little monomania in celebration, would we? So, I hope you'll indulge me, but right now I've got gay marriage on the mind.

Same-sex marriage is not an issue limited to New England. The city council of Washington, DC recently voted to legalize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere. It was nearly unanimous, but for one hold-out. Guesses?

From the Washington Post:
D.C. Council member Marion Barry (D-Ward 8), the only council member to vote against the bill today to legalize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, predicted today there could be a "civil war" in the District if the Council decides to take up a broader gay marriage bill later this year.

"All hell is going to break lose," Barry said while speaking to reporters. "We may have a civil war. The black community is just adamant against this."


"What you've got to understand is 98 percent of my constituents are black and we don't have but a handful of openly gay residents," Barry said. "Secondly, at least 70 percent of those who express themselves to me about this are opposed to anything dealing with this issue. The ministers think it is a sin, and I have to be sensitive to that."
Yes, that Marion Barry. So, along with Miss California and Joe the Plumber, the opponents to gay marriage can add a particularly storied politician to their ranks. Splendid.

I admire the political courage that Mr. Barry displays, noting that he has hardly any gay constituents (or, at least hardly any openly gay ones), so why on earth should he care about their rights?

I do not think Marion Barry speaks for black people, as Ta-Nehisi points out, as much as it seems he thinks he does. Indeed, all the other councilors for DC (a majority black city) voted for marriage equality. In fact, my point really is not about gay marriage and black ministers in DC at all. It's that the only vote opponents to gay marriage got in DC is a formerly disgraced but politically undead crazy person.


  1. Hey, you left out one particularly storied gay marriage opponent politician. You might remember him, he's the the guy who is standing by while the military fires the West Point graduate and officer in the Army National Guard who is fluent in Arabic and who returned recently from Iraq.

  2. John, I think you are laboring under the assumption that I am just totally in love with Obama, and think he can do no wrong. Allow me to clear things up for you. From the perspective of gay rights, at least, he has thus far been quite unimpressive. I hope he makes strides in this area, but I am certainly aware of his shortcomings thus far.

  3. Erm, no, I'm not under the impression that you are sold out for Obama. I'm sure you are unhappy with Mr. Obama, especially for his inactivity on gay rights, but also for his pro-torture directives, his inability to convince Congress to pay for closing GITMO, his never ending parade of ethically challenged, tax cheating, former lobbyist appointees, and his economic policy of generational theft.