Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Illinois U. S. Senate candidate Andy Martin supports DOMA

U. S. Senate candidate Andy Martin, a constitutional scholar and former adjunct professor of law, says the Obama Administration’s abandonment of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) in Court is a serious mistake. Martin says DOMA strikes an appropriate balance between the divergent social policies of fifty states. Martin will be leading protests against “infanticide congressman” Mark Kirk in Springfield, Illinois on Wednesday and Thursday, August 19-20.

In defense of DOMA: Andy Martin defends Bill Clinton’s legacy of preserving the institution of marriage for American society

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Andy Martin says Barack Obama has blundered again, abandoning “DOMA” in federal court

(CHICAGO)(August 18, 2009) I’ve never been married. And it’s not because I’m gay. Although my political views are conservative, my personal views are more accommodating. No, I wasn’t at Woodstock forty years ago, so you don’t have to listen to my Woodstock tales. But I wasn’t far away, either.

Despite never being married, I still believe in marriage. It is an ideal. And here’s a silly factoid. One of my favorite sections of the Sunday New York Times every week is the wedding announcements. One of my old girlfriends even made it into the big “Wedding of the Week” story some years ago. Nice person. I was very happy for her. I enjoy reading stories about people getting married.

I also understand the anguish many gays feel about the institution of marriage. As a society we are not of one mind about what marriage means. DOMA strikes an appropriate balance under the U. S. Constitution.

Thirteen years ago, President Bill Clinton signed the “Defense of Marriage Act,” or “DOMA. Despite the fact that Clinton signed the law, he recently said it should be repealed. I feel his pain. In the you-know-what.

DOMA was indeed a compromise. In fact, if the U. S. Supreme Court had not issued Roe v. Wade in 1973, the abortion conflict would look a lot like the DOMA solution. Each state could and would set its own standards.

As a nation, we are a “union.” But just as a marriage is a union of a man and a woman, a union of states is a uniting of divergent regions, different cultures, different social norms and different social attitudes. No one questions that society is a little more liberal from Boston to Washington, or that the “South” is more conservative, or that California is a land unto its own. And so on. Putting aside all the other forms of “diversity,” we are a diverse nation even when it comes to marital customs.

DOMA allows different states to maintain different standards without fear of being overwhelmed by the “Full Faith and Credit Clause” (“FFCC”) of the U. S. Constitution. As a constitutional scholar, I can assure you the FFCC is a very powerful part of our union and our jurisprudence. We created a union of states, but “full faith and credit” requires them to act on a united basis for most secular matters.

On the other hand, marriage and family law has always been the province of states, not Congress. [These comments are starting to sound like a law brief, but you get the picture.] Constitutional law is complex, and often conflicting. The relationship between the states of the union is even more subtle.

Surprisingly, constitutional “freedoms” don’t always cut in a “conservative” direction as most liberals would have us believe. California claims a right to grow marijuana (a liberal view?) while federal law criminalizes what California allows. Try and figure that one out.

The point: we are liberals and conservatives and everything in between, all mixed in. And many of us through experience have come to harbor conflicting viewpoints on social customs. Former Vice president Dick Chaney would be a notable example.

DOMA strikes a balance. Not an easy balance, but a balance. If a state does not want to recognize an out of state marriage that is not between a man and a woman, that state is not compelled to do so by the FFCC. Gays want to repeal DOMA so that gay marriage would become a nationwide institution through the diktat of the FFCC. Most conservatives want to retain DOMA. I support retention.

After rope-a-doping during the campaign and promising us he opposed gay marriage but endorsed civil unions, Barack Obama has now abandoned DOMA.

Obama talks a lot about diversity, but at the end of the day Obama is not about diversity, he is about conformity, suffocating liberal conformity.

We can look at DOMA as trying to address the conflicts between three spheres of our lives. In religion, churches should be absolutely free to recognize or not recognize marriages as they see fit. No one should tell a church whom to marry, or not to marry.

In our personal lives, we are free to believe what we believe.
My own beliefs are a mixture of conservative public policy and more liberal personal views.

Finally, there is the area of public morality and policy. Here, “conservatism” should be recognized as the touchstone of our social stability over the past 200 years. Just as the law protects the right to believe as we please, and protects the right of religions institutions to believe as they please, we should respect each other’s beliefs from state to state, and not impose New York’s social policies on Idaho, or Iowa’s on Alabama’s. The law is the sentinel of the Constitution.

DOMA is a compromise. And compromises often do not please everyone. They can’t. But DOMA protects the social and public policy diversity of our nation. It should be maintained and supported by the federal government. Obama is wrong to impose one rigid and uniform liberal social doctrine on the entire nation. His unwavering and relentless liberalism will be his undoing.

As for me, now that these remarks are finished and ready for distribution, I can catch up with my deferred reading, and start with the marriage announcements in last Sunday’s Times.
Readers of Obama: The Man Behind The Mask, say the book is still the only gold standard and practical handbook on Barack Obama's unfitness for the presidency. Buy it.Book orders: Amazon.com or http://OrangeStatePress.com. Immediate shipment from Amazon.com or signed copies (delayed for signing) from the publisher are available.
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Andy Martin is a legendary Chicago muckraker, author, Internet columnist, radio talk show host, broadcaster and media critic. He has over forty years of broadcasting background in radio and television and is the dean of Illinois media and communications. He is currently promoting his best-selling book, Obama: The Man Behind The Mask and producing the new Internet movie "Obama: The Hawai'i years." Andy is the Executive Editor and publisher of www.ContrarianCommentary.com. Martin comments on regional, national and world events with more than four decades of experience. He holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois College of Law and is a former adjunct professor of law at the City University of New York.
UPDATES: www.twitter.com/AndyMartinUSAwww.facebook.com/AndyMartin Andy's columns are also posted at ContrarianCommentary.blogspot.com; contrariancommentary.wordpress.com. [NOTE: We frequently correct typographical errors and additions/subtractions on our blogs, where you can find the latest edition of this release.]
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Jenifer said...

A bad Mark Kirk is still better than an Andy Martin any day.
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