The Right Call

Of course, the voters of Massachusetts should have the right to decide if they want to vote to amend their state constitution following a court decision granting marriage rights to all citizens. The attempt by some gay activists to prevent the legitimate constitutional process from going forward is lamentable and misguided. The legislature should decide, according to the established procedures, whether to place the measure on the ballot. I feel confident that if it were on the ballot, equality would win - especially since, here in Massachusetts, public opinion has swung so quickly and favorably toward equality in marriage in the wake of thousands of gay weddings. This proposal, moreover, is so draconian it will struggle to gain minimal acceptance. It would not only rob gay couples of the right to marry, but of the right to a civil union or a domestic partnership. It actually helps expose the bigotry of those behind it. And yes: denying gay couples any rights at all is, to my mind, an expression of bigotry. Fair-minded people can agree to disagree on support for marriage or civil unions. But denying gay couples any civil protections is on its face hateful. So why so defensive?