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November 08, 2004 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2004-11-08

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Monday, November 8, 2004

OPINION

+M' + 420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
&tothedaily@michigandaily.com

EDITED AND MANAGED BY
STUDENTS AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
SINCE 1890

JORDAN SCHRADER
Editor in Chief
JASON Z. PESICK
Editorial Page Editor

NOTABLE
QUOTABLE
''I guess it's less
intrusive than being
hand searched."

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majority
of the Daily's editorial board. All other pieces do not
necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.

SAM BUTLER 'FE. SA V'!OX

1'
i-i, i;6j l { 'itjt i . :("(,*
Cour 4 s uc 1 N

- Anonymous female airline
passenger, commenting on new X-ray scanners
at London's Heathrow International Airport
that produce naked images of passengers, as
reported yesterday by The London Times.

#1

The anger of a drowning man
DANIEL ADAMS HORSESHDOES AND HANGRENA.DES

Democrats haven't
taken Tuesday's
loss well. I sure
haven't. Bitter. Sour-
grapes. Sore loser. All
apply. This loss was
palpably different. I
don't feel upset. Upset
doesn't even begin to
describe it.
While I anxiously
watched polling data roll in
from Ohio, 11 states passed gay marriage bans.
Whether or not President Bush won on the issue
of same-sex marriage is moot. What is certain
is that Bush, Cheney and Republicans nation-
wide supported, funded and rallied on the mes-
sage that homosexual couples do not deserve
legal equality with heterosexual couples. Fiscal
and social conservatives, along with a handful
of religious Democrats, voted for these men.
I do not feel upset.
I feel eviscerated. I feel sick. I feel angry.
Saturday, New York Times columnist David
Brooks attempted to confront this rising anger
from the Left. "If you want to understand why
Democrats keep losing elections," he wrote,
"just listen to some coastal and university town
liberals talk about how conformist and intoler-
ant people in Red America are. It makes you
wonder: Why is it that people who are com-
pletely closed-minded talk endlessly about how
open-minded they are?"
As a university-town liberal, let me take a
stab at that.
I am open-minded. I believe that homosex-
ual couples have all the rights that heterosex-
ual couples do. I also believe that the so-called
"Red America" can hate whomever it likes. It
just can't write that hate into law.
Not surprisingly, most religious conser-
vatives don't agree with me. Bush carried
majorities in the Protestant, Catholic and

born-again demographics.
Eleven states, including my own, don't agree
with me. These states passed laws banning gay
marriage - all by comfortable margins.
Bush doesn't agree with me. He supported
these initiatives and was rewarded with a sec-
ond term in office.
America, a nation that I thought had dis-
tanced itself from the dark days of state-spon-
sored discrimination, doesn't agree with me.
And I don't care.
Because when it comes to equality, yes, I am
close-minded. In America, even freedom comes
with restriction. Equality under the law does
not. Neither religious belief nor the democratic
process can legitimize any effort to unmake it.
Because it isn't a give or a bonus; it is a right. It
is immutable and unquestionable. It is apolitical
and unconditional. It is a right guaranteed to all
citizens, regardless of sexual orientation. Anyone
that voted for Proposal 2 voted to make Ameri-
can equality conditional on sexual orientation.
If that makes me close minded, so be it.
Just yesterday, in an interview on Fox News
Sunday, Bush advisor Karl Rove said that Bush
would "absolutely" push Congress to consider
a Constitutional amendment banning gay mar-
riage. He added, "If we want to have a hopeful and
decent society, we ought to aim for the ideal, and
the ideal is that marriage ought to be, and should
be, a union of a man and a woman." Anyone that
voted for Bush, regardless of motivation, did so in
spite of this shameful agenda.
But Republicans aren't the only people on the
wrong side of history here. Self interested and
unprincipled, the Democratic Party sold out its
legacy as the progressive party by appealing to the
Religious Wrong. Rather than take a principled
stand, Kerry and Edwards instead argued that the
issue of gay marriage should be left to the states.
Congratulations fellas, you got your wish.
For the Democrats, the real tragedy wasn't
that they lost, and lost badly, but rather that

they lost without standing up against the
willful and deliberate oppression of a social
minority. If the Democratic Party needs to
change, it needs to stand up - not move
toward the center. Don't rebuild. Reload.
Stand up.
A gay marriage ban does not belong in this
state's constitution. Consideration of such a
ban does not belong in the discourse of this
nation. I watched television Tuesday night
riveted to talk of the war, electoral vote and
exit polls. I woke up Wednesday morning
ashamed of my nation for the first time.
And I will stand up.
This election has convinced me quite clearly that
even fiscal conservatives, a group whose position I
used to understand and tolerate, cannot be expect-
ed to do the right thing. To put their social agenda
first. They will vote Republican, even if it happens
to reinforce a policy of hate. They, along with the
Right and a bunch of Democrats in disguise, sold
America's homosexuals down the river.
News flash to the Religious Wrong: you don't
monopolize morality in this country, at least not
as long as you insist on fueling your political
campaigns with the rights of religious and social
minorities. We do - those who believe that with-
out equality, no one can be free. And you will lose
this fight. History has put America on the path of
progression, and you will lose. If it isn't my chil-
dren, it will be their children. Or their children's
children. But you will lose. You are on the wrong
side of history.
Brooks calls it "the anger of a drowning man."
He's right. Mine isn't a pleasant disagreement with4
those who voted for Proposal 2 and/or George Bush
- it is anger. But we, those who wept Wednesday
morning for our nation, are not drowning.
We are standing.
We are right.
Adams can be reached
at dnadams@umich.edu.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

0I

Letter writer's vote
respectable, his opinion is
indefensible
TO THE DAILY:
Jeff Spencer, people are telling you that
you cast a vote for "hate, oppression and
incompetence" because you did (It is liber-
als, not Bush supporters, who actually need
to grow up, 11/05/04). I'd tell you the same
thing. While I probably wouldn't call you
stupid (and Democrats, that ain't changing
anyone's mind), and while I respect your
right to vote, I'm not going to respect your
vote. President Bush is a president who
actively discourages opposing viewpoints,
who barrels ahead directly in the face of
evidence that his actions are not only erro-
neous but actively harmful. He looked at an
empty treasury and a war with mounting,
staggering costs and thought to himself,
"Hmmm. Great time to cut taxes." This is
a president who not only refuses to admit
mistakes but has made it his schtick. This
president supported an amendment to the
U.S. Constitution banning gay marriage,
but what is equally horrifying is that he
knew full well that there was no chance of
it passing. He did it to galvanize the hatred
and prejudice against gays and dirty liber-
als in this country because that's what fed
his campaign and, ultimately, his re-elec-
tion. Congratulations - you have cast your
lot with the bigots and the homophobes.
So now we have a devastated budget, under-
funded schools, a social policy of fear and hate
and a world stage that regards us with resent-
ment and distrust, and this country just signed
up for more of the same. You're not stupid, but
you were duped. Bush pissed on your head,
told you it was raining and sold you a broken
umbrella. Don't expect me to respect that.
Jill Siegelbaum
Alum
A Libertarian offers his
perspective on the election
TO THE DAILY:
I thought that I should at least attempt
to give an outsiders' perspective of the

most people never even heard of my candi-
date, here is what I noticed about everyone
else.
First, Kerry never seriously had a chance.
Most of his supporters will admit that they
did not promote him for any quality that
he had, but instead because of a negative
- that he is not Bush. While this had the
effect of galvanizing the leftist opposition,
the middle ground of American voters obvi-
ously did not see enough quality in Kerry to
win their vote.
Second, the Bush versus Kerry fighting
got worse and more annoying as time went
on. When I first got to campus, the elec-
tion was just gaining momentum. Stickers
and buttons were being handed out, and
campaign volunteers were signing up. As
we got closer to election, the fight got more
heated. One could not walk anywhere with-
out seeing a sticker, a sign taped up, side-
walk chalk messages or flyers handed out..
The two sides seemed less intent on winning
votes and more on seeing who could put the
most junk out there. All of this stuff just
ended up making campus look like a waste-
paper landfill. I am surprised that leftist
environmentalists have not been up in arms
about the waste of resources and collection
of filth. One side would tear down junk
and put up their own. Even up in Bursley (a
nice hall full of engineering, art and music
majors) people were fighting like children.
People would rip down stickers and what-
not off of doors and put up the opposition's.
This just led to people yelling in the hall-
ways and lots of pissed off residents. All of
this just makes me believe that the two sides
were more interested in pissing each other
off than anything else.
Third, the post-election turmoil is almost
worse. The Republicans can gloat, and the
Democrats can do nothing but sling insults.
Respectable ideas are hard to find in the
mess. Note I said respectable, so this elimi-
nates Zack Denfeld's column about blue
puddles (Blue puddles, 11/05/04). If the best
responses to Bush's victory are costume
days, lay-ins, sleepable benches and random
anti-capitalist/commerce comments, then
no wonder the Republicans are gloating
right now.
I don't know if anyone cares or if they

compete with good ideas instead of insults.
Until then, stop the complaining, and see
what positives we can draw out of the next
four years.
Clark Ruper
LSA freshman
Daily misstates court case
concerning marijuana law *
TO THE DAILY:
Your story, A2 Voters Pass Initiative to Legal-
ize Medical Marijuana (11/03/04), misstated
the medical marijuana case pending before the
U.S. Supreme Court, Ashcroft v. Raich. That
case cannot overturn Ann Arbor's new medi-
cal marijuana law, nor the 10 existing state
medical marijuana laws.
The right of states and cities to protect
medical patients from arrest under their
local laws has not been contested by the fed-
eral government and is not an issue in this
case. While the court could give the federal
government permission to resume enforc-
ing federal marijuana laws against patients,
it is important to remember that 99 percent
of all marijuana arrests are made by state
and local authorities under local laws. Even
if the government prevails in Ashcroft v.
Raich, overwhelming protection for patients
will remain in-place.
Bruce Mirken
The letter writer is the
Director of Communications for the
Marijuana Policy Project.

LETTERS POLICY
The Michigan Daily welcomes
letters from all of its readers. Letters from
University students, faculty, staff and
administrators will be given priority over
others. Letters should include the writer's
name, college and school year or other
University affiliation. The Daily will not
print any letter containing statements that
cannot be verified.
Letters should be kept to approxi-
mately 300 words. The Michigan Daily
reserves the right to edit for length, clar-
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