Have Senate Republicans Forgotten Anti-Miscegenation Laws?
Senate Republicans, trying desperately to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act that defines marriage as only between a man and a women, are insisting that Gay Marriage is not a Civil Rights issue.
Citing the Civil Rights movement of years past, Republicans say laws prohibiting black women and white men from marrying did so because of racial discrimination. But they say the anti-gay marriage discrimination is based on defense of the institution of marriage itself.
Republicans seem to forget the kinds of arguments made against interracial marriage in the past, that bear an eerie resemblance to the anti-gay rhetoric spewing forth from their party today.
In fact, there was never a nationwide law prohibiting interracial marriage, it was left up to the states. According to Wikipedia, in 1908 Representative Seaborn Roddenbery (a Democrat) introduced an anti-miscegenation amendment to the Constitution. In arguing for this amendment, he said:
"No brutality, no infamy, no degradation in all the years of southern slavery, possessed such villainious character and such atrocious qualities as the provision of the laws of Illinois, Massachusetts, and other states which allow the marriage of the negro, Jack Johnson, to a woman of Caucasian strain." This kind of rhetoric sounds a lot like that being voiced by the anti-gay marriage movement. Within the bubble of moral superiority, the anti-gay advocates are as oblivious as their racist predecessors to their blatantly discriminatory position. To the racist or bigot, it just appears that "that's the way it is".
Senator Rick Santorum is a modern day Seaborn Roddenberry. He's been quoted as calling homosexuals "wicked and depraved", and likening homosexuality to incest, adultery, man on child, and man on dog sex. Michelle Bachman has likened gays to Satan, and said of the homosexual lifestyle: "...it’s bondage. It is personal bondage, personal despair and personal enslavement."
These clearly discriminatory statements are no different than those made years ago by racist politicians. Ultimately, the anti-gay Republicans back up their argument by claiming that homosexual marriage will have a devastating affect on society, our children, and the family. Anti-gay Republicans have also cited God as being on their side and the source of much of their sentiment, just as racists did in the past to defend laws of segregation.
Republicans in the Senate could stand to brush up on their US history.