Sunday, April 24, 2005

Silence on Connecticut civil unions

Last week, I blogged that the Connecticut bill recognizing civil unions for gay couples as a "huge triumph" for the gay rights movement because it was the first time that a state recognized some form of same-sex union without being forced to do so by its courts. I also noted in a comment following the post that there was surprisingly little media coverage of the historic bill, something that others in the blogosphere such as Angus Dwyer have also noticed.

Why the silence? Gay rights opponents have long relied on the argument that court-ordered recognition was anti-democratic and that a constitutional amendment was needed to rein in out-of-control judges. Either their silence suggests that as long as legislatures and not the courts recognize same-sex unions there is no problem, or they simply don't know how to respond to the new bill and are hoping that if they keep quiet, no one will notice. Or maybe they're just chalking it up to Connecticut being in the Northeast, with a sort of 'what else did you expect' reaction.

Even if all those possibilities help to explain the silence, I'm still surprised because I would have guessed that Connecticut would have motivated gay rights opponents to redouble their efforts to enact a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman now that state legislatures apparently can no longer be trusted to hew the line. I'm genuinely puzzled by the lack of response, though frankly I welcome this silence because if Connecticut's bill is not challenged, it could set a precedent for other "blue" states to follow. Who said federalism was for conservatives only?

1 Comments:

Blogger The Critics said...

What are you trying to tell us, POYS?

4/26/2005 07:59:00 PM  

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