D.C. Council Approves Human Rights; GOP Representative Objects16 December, 2009
Back in early December, the Washington D.C. Council decided that human rights really do apply to all humans. The District will be joining Vermont, Iowa, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut (Maine and California voters (with heavy funding from outside the states) decided that some humans are not eligible for human rights).
“This is a culmination of the entire gay rights movement,” Richard J. Rosendall, a past president of the Gay and Lesbian Activist Alliance of Washington D.C., said after the vote. “We have spent many, many, years working toward this.” (from the Washington Post)
Unfortunately, Washington D.C. is not a state. It is a federal district. Though they do have home rule now (the days of the U.S. congress voting on parking meter increases is long gone), the congress has 30 days to object. Luckily, there is no sign of opposition.
Oh. Wait. The gentleman from Utah will be heard from (from the Salt Lake City Tribune):
A Utah Republican renewed his pledge Tuesday to prevent the nation’s capital from allowing gay couples to marry after the Washington, D.C., Council signed off on such a measure.
But Rep. Jason Chaffetz acknowledged it will be tough to overturn the newly adopted ordinance, which the Washington mayor is expected to sign before Christmas.
“It’s going to be exceptionally difficult because Democrats have us outnumbered by large amounts,” Chaffetz said Tuesday. “Nevertheless, we’re going to try.”
Chaffetz sits on a House subcommittee that oversees the district. Congress can revoke D.C. laws within 30 days after they are signed by the mayor.
Chaffetz promises to introduce legislation in January.
“If it were put up for a vote, traditional marriage would win,” he said. “It would win with a congressional vote, and it would win with the residents of Washington, D.C.”
Heh. A representative from Utah (always a hotbed of traditional marriage (think Saint George and the LDS fundies)) wants force a vote on whether humans are deserving of human rights. Traditional marriage, huh? That would be no divorces under any circumstances, wife and children are the literal property of the man and parents having the right to kill children for not obeying dad instantly. These things have changed. The number of wives a Mormon can have has changed, but for D.C. to change and become more inclusive?
America is a democracy. However, majority does not always rule. The point of the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically the Bill of Rights, is to protect the rights of minorities. Specifically, to protect the civil rights of minorities. Civil rights are not a matter for popular vote. Representative Chaffetz, a member of the Church of Latter Day Saints, seems to forget that there was a time when Mormons were a persecuted minority subjected to some of the same legal, social and vigilante restrictions facing gay and lesbian Americans today.
(The comments under the SLCT article are, surprisingly, very anti-Chaffetz.)