Thursday, May 31, 2007

Donato Defends Anti-Marriage Stance

Representative Paul Donato (D-Medford) has a dozen reasons justifying his vote in favor of the anti-marriage amendment at this and last year's Constitutional Convention. He displayed all of them in a meeting with Medford High School students last week. He has surveys, he said, proving to him that people in his district don't want it. He supports of various other equal rights laws including civil unions. Besides, he says, if it passes, the students will always have a chance to overturn it sometime in the future. The biggest reason, though, was that he had to vote yes in order to protect democracy. From the Medford Transcript:

"First of all, I’m not a homophobe, I’ve had the opportunity to be friends with many gay individuals," Donato said. "But this is a government issue and the question isn’t gay marriage, but do people have the right to change the constitution."
Of course, in saying this, Donato seems to be abdicating his own role in the process to change the Constitution, as if he's a rubber stamp, powerless to block amendments regardless of what he thinks of them. That, of course, ignores the fact that Donato seemed to have absolutely no problem denying the people the "right" to vote on the Health Care amendment, by voting to adjourn before that vote was taken at the last ConCon. If he believes so strongly that people have "the right to change the constitution" why did he vote down that amendment? The end of the article tells us exactly why:
"At this point in my life, I just believe that marriage exists between a man and a woman," Donato said.
Fine. If that's why you're voting against the amendment, then just say that. Don't try to hide your rationale by inventing elaborate justifications for your position, and don't pretend that you're not voting based on your personal beliefs rather than some imagined defense of the democratic process -- particularly when your previous actions show otherwise.

His most hilarious comment, in my opinion, was when he claimed that if the SJC had ruled the opposite way, marriage equality advocates would have the opposite opinion -- they'd be asking for a vote on a marriage amendment. Never mind that marriage advocates would not have needed a Constitutional amendment; had the opposite happened, they'd only need the legislature to pass a law allowing same-sex unions. Donato expects us to believe, despite what he says above, that he would not also have the opposite opinion in his imaginary scenario.

(Via Bay Windows)