"a recent L.A. Times poll that showed 54% of African Americans remain steadfastly opposed to same-sex marriage. In this regard straight privilege and religious privilege have converged in a decidedly unholy alliance. The tiresome debate over whether gay and lesbian liberation struggle is a “civil rights” issue hinges on proprietary claims to the civil rights movement legacy that supposedly only straight black folk are entitled to."

Same sex marriage, religiosity and race seem to be inescapably intertwined, but wishy-washy lefty liberals like me find it uncomfortable to talk about this.

I live in England, where the majority of caucasians are either atheistic/agnostic or, at worst, vaguely deistic in a vaguely xpian sense. BUT, it seems to me that a majority of arab, asian and black people I meet are religious, generally monotheistic. I'm assuming that the reasons for the higher levels of religiosity among non-white ethnic groups are cultural, not some function of their ethnicity.

So, how do we tackle this?

p.s. You may have worked out from my name that I'm a bit arabic myself. This doesn't mean I'm not racist (IMO, everyone is inherently racist to some degree, the important question is whether we allow ingrained prejudice to affect
our thoughts and actions; I try to recognise my own biases and deal with them), but I feel obliged to chuck it in the mix to add some small support my point that I'm not approaching this argument from a position of racism.

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I agree that it's very disheartening to see denied-their-civil-rights-group A denigrate denied-their-civil-rights-group B. Blacks ragging on Koreans, Native Americans ragging on Blacks. I just want to bitch slap the lot of them and tell them to wake up and smell the blatant similarities between their groups' causes.

I can sort of see gay rights as being separate since 'gay' doesn't come from a particular skin pigment or nationality and there are still too many people out there who think it's a choice, not a natural tendency.

But in my view, there is little difference between the struggle in the 60s to make interracial marriage legal and the struggle now to make same sex marriage legal. Our great, great grandkids will look back on this and wonder, "What were people afraid would happen if gays and lesbians got married?"

P.S. re; your P.S.: Blunt, but true. Don't know if it's made any news your way but the big flap over the nomination over our new supreme court justice was a comment she once made that ended with something like "A wise Latina woman (judge) coming to a better conclusion than a White male." Out of context - which is the only way to go if you are trying to scare voters into hating your enemy - it sounds pretty blatant and racist. In context what preceded that statement was basically what you said; that we are each born into our own culture and background and history and environment, and that is the lens through which we have experienced and learned about the world around us. Applied to certain cases, a wise Latina woman might see something that the white male judge missed (or implicitly, vice-versa). Hence the need for diversity on our courts just as in our juries.
And in going back, I sound kinda harsh saying "I want to bitch slap the lot of them." I hope folks realize that's not specific to any one race, that's my desire to bitch slap the entire human race in general.

It is quite puzzling to me.

I worked vehemently against Prop 8 in the last election and the very last demographic I expected to be for the measure were the blacks. That was a total system shock. I would have expected that they would be the most sympathetic demographic, having themselves been the victims of unjustifiable, unreasonable, prejudicial laws and regulation.

Oddly it was the white voters who split about evenly while the non-white voters voted in favor of the ban -- that fucking blew my mind. (Blacks were the most in favor of the ban at 70% followed by Hispanics at 53%. Asians were the only demographic that, as a whole, voted against the ban).

I still don't understand it entirely.

In fairness, it was mostly the aged and elderly who were lopsidedly for the ban; blacks were the only demographic where both the older and younger voters were both for the ban; all other demographics split between younger voters against and older voters for.

The only comfort I can take in all this is that -- they will die soon. Hopefully before the next time we vote on this. This way they can live out their life in their dream world where gays are sub-human and I don't have to keep living in a state that regulates benign behavior.
Interesting read here.

There are a number of perspectives on who Prop 8 was won and by whom. True that Black voters favored prop 8 (70% to 30%) but then 49% percent of Asians did, and 53 % Latinos, and just under 50% of white votors favored Measure 8. By itself, the Black community did not result in the final outcome of the vote, when the demographics are followed.

Daily Kos broke down the statistics in mind-numbing detail, even for a numbers geek like me. Basically, even if Black voters reflected exactly the other demographics' votes on prop 8, it still would have won. Scapegoating the Black vote doesn't change the fact that the other demographic groups were either against, or barely (hair's-breadth) for, equal rights.

That still leaves the question of GLBTQ communities. Smiling Eyes' comments were the most eloquent regarding religion and, to reject religion can be to reject one's own culture - and there is no obvious "replacement culture" once that occurs. That was the key to the issue.

So then, what next? How to sway a small # of voters to equality, next time around? And should that be focused on a particular group?
Smiling Eyes,

Actually, I don't think that any existing marriages were invalidated. Just no new one could occur.

I agree with you, this is very disillusioning. Plus, looking for someone to blame.

Im sure that it will come up for vote again. It will be a hard-fought, dirty campaign. There will be lot of money spent. I have no idea which way it will go.

Off most radar screens = Washington state passed a domestic partner expansion that results in all rights and responsibilities of marriage. It's marriage in all but name. A ballot measure is being pushed to cancel it, but there is controversy about the signatures.
There was another editorial on this topic that I wanted to add, and finally found it, here. "Are Black people really homophobic?". A couple of quotes,

After a little time passed and everyone took a deep breath, reports said the exit polling was exaggerated and put the percentage of black support for the measure closer to 58 percent.

"Party identification, age, religiosity and political view had much bigger effects than race, gender or having gay and lesbian family and friends." In fact, among regular church-goers, black support for Prop. 8 was lower than for any other ethnic group. But the report also found that African-American support rose above the 52 percent that Prop. 8 received from all voters in the November election."

There is much more to the editorial. As with many issues, it's never as simple as we think on first exposure. It helps to have variety of perspectives. I feel frustrated when reading "X"-people do or think "Y" - you fill in what you want for the X and Y. As Mark Twain said, "All generalizations are false, including this one."

That being said, how to bring about change in the next round of this battle? With limited resources, focus on specfic demographic groups? If the size of California's Black community is too small to change the outcome of the election, will they focus on this one community? If they focus on demographics, will it be more useful to focus on the largest groups, White and Latin? Wait a bit longer, until more of the older, most antigay demographic, dies off? Will they rush into a campaign now, when anti-Republican (The other, overlapping, most antigay demographic) feeling is at an all-time high?




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