Lars Thorwald has a strong post on why Obama's DOJ brief in defense of DOMA is in fact a keeping of a promise: to restore the rule of law after eight years of abuse. I take every point he makes. Read the whole thing.
After this back-and-forth today, I think we can summarize: the brief is (just about) defensible; its full contents are way over the line; someone in the DOJ must have understood that and decided to file it anyway - without even consulting anyone in the gay community. The deployment of arguments that refer to our relationships as equivalent to incest, that demand that we simply marry someone of the opposite sex if we want our civil rights, that implies federal recognition of our civil marriages would mean taxing some Americans to pay for something they abhor: this is simply salt in the wound, and it will be deployed and used by every far right gay-hater in the future, and cited as endorsed by the Obama administration. In the context of Obama's failure to fulfill any of his pledges to the gay community since he took office, this is terribly deflating.
We are asked to be patient, and that is fair enough. But we should not be asked to be attacked in this gratuitous manner, shut out of dialogue beforehand, and applaud. We did that for eight years under Clinton. Never again.