And so the players got away with cheating
In the months and years that followed the Massachusetts court ruling, only MassResistance seemed to understand what was really at stake. We fought on, with no help from outside organizations. We campaigned to have the four errant judges removed from office. For that, we were called “extreme” by our supposed conservative allies.
Meanwhile, the “mainstream” pro-family group pursued a fanciful Constitutional amendment (which would have allowed civil unions) through to its defeat in 2007, wasting valuable time, energy, and resources. They remained allied with Governor Romney through all his prevarications, despite his responsibility for implementing SSM. (They made no secret of being offended by our disagreement and “impolite” tactics – i.e., speaking the truth).
All the way to the very end of his term, we tried to convince the Governor to issue an executive order admitting his error and halting SSM. (Perhaps it was unrealistic to expect a politician to admit his mistake. But the point needed to be made.)
- The radicals were watching the pro-family collapse closely. This was their test case. Tactics they learned and perfected:
- Use the courts, identifying sympathetic judges.
- Use emotional appeals. (“Love is love.” “We’re being denied equal rights.” “Our children need stable homes.”)
- Call your enemies names: bigot, Hitler, c*nt, troglodyte, fascist, hater, homophobe, anti-gay, wing nut, whack job.
- Intimidate the opposition into moderate, compromising goals.
- Subvert the legislators with money and propaganda.
The radicals got away with it. Concern over “judicial activism” after the Goodridge ruling was a mere blip in the conservative media which quickly faded.
Worse yet, the national Republican establishment gave Governor Romney a huge pass when he became the Republican Presidential candidate in 2012. His record was whitewashed or ignored, not only on RomneyCare but also on his unconstitutional implementation of SSM and his support for the Governor’s Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth.
(Just one example: Romney’s Commission headliner in 2005 was “transgender warrior” Leslie Feinberg, editor of Workers World, who led teens in their annual Youth Pride parade).
It came as no surprise to read a few months ago that 23 of Romney’s 2012 Presidential campaign staff signed the “Republican” petition to the Court urging the Supreme Court to rule for SSM. After all, their standard bearer had made his position clear long before. In 1994 he told the homosexual Log Cabin Republicans and the Boston “gay” newspaper that if elected Senator he would fight for “gay rights” and even do more than Ted Kennedy “to establish full equality for America’s gay and lesbian citizens.” His actions as Governor in 2004 fulfilled that promise.
We tried to warn everyone over the past decade where this was all going from our bunker at ground zero. It wasn’t just about false “marriage.” It was about the demise of the rule of law and the constitution. It was about judicial tyranny. If we’d had help holding the line in Massachusetts a decade ago, things might be very different today.
But as things are, courts can issue absurd rulings in violation of clear constitutional principles, and get away with it. Clearly partial judges can sit on cases when they should recuse, and get away with it. Courts can write new law and invent new rights, and get away with it. Officials can issue SSM licenses where no law has authorized them, and get away with it. Politicians enable this insanity (whether bowing to the court, or voting to confirm an activist judge), and get away with it. SSM supporters harass and bring legal actions against citizens who disagree with them, and get away with it.
2005: Protesting the Mass. Chief Justice’s shredding of the Constitution in the 2003 SSM ruling. Author is on the left holding sign vs. “imperial judiciary.”
First published at Turning Point
Amy Contrada has been a frontline activist since the 1990s, starting in the birthplace of American liberty, Lexington, Massachusetts. She joined the effort to stop SSM in Massachusetts in 2003, began the MassResistance blog in 2005, and published Mitt Romney’s Deception in 2011. This year, she updated her report on Elena Kagan’s “LGBT rights” advocacy as Dean of Harvard Law School, to support the call for Kagan’s recusal in the Obergefell case.
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