Not that there's anything wrong with it

It seems that the U.S. faces a serious threat from gays as well as from people burning the flag. Why else would Congress decide to spend a couple of weeks debating constitutional amendments that would ban gay marriage as well as make burning the U.S. flag illegal? It would be perhaps more economical if Congress were to pass an amendment that prohibits homosexuals from getting married while wearing burning U.S. flags. That would kill two birds with one stone.

Of course, all of such idiocy is merely pandering. The Republicans and Gee Dubya want to show their serious Bible-beating base that they feel their pain. The flag issue is also pretty much a far-right pleaser although it has probably a little more broad support because of veterans organizations backing that amendment. Both proposals have a snowball’s chance in hell of passing though.

As for the gay marriage ban, it might take a constitutional scholar just to figure out what the hell is being suggested in the proposed amendment. Look at the wording and pay particular attention to the second sentence:

“Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution or the constitution of any State, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups.”

The first sentence is pretty self-explanatory. But the following sentence has provoked a debate over whether this means states can allow civil unions or whether states are prohibited from it. A little while ago I saw Sen. John Warner, R-Va., on C-Span telling his fellow senators that the sentence needs to be clarified. He made the point that the Senate had recently said that English should be the national language, yet this proposed amendment fails to convey a clear meaning in English (or any other language for that matter).

What this debate over the gay marriage ban and flag burning amendments amounts to is to allow a vote so Republicans can say prior to the November elections that their Democratic opponents voted FOR gay marriage or voted FOR flag burning by voting against the measures.

I think congressional members need to just recess now and go on a long junket — like to Mars.

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