Thursday, January 7, 2010

New Jersey votes Live and Courts Come Out of The Closet.

Coming out of the closet for most of us means letting go of hiding our real selves, moving from a life of deception, to a life lived openly and honestly. This is not usually a thought that I would associate with the legislative or judicial process, but thats precisely the case this year in California and, most in New Jersey.

New Jersey's vote on Marriage Equality occurs TODAY!  The vote will be broadcast live Via their state website.(find it here). Though the prognosis has not been good  for New Jersey's vote, they have New York to serve as an example of what NOT to do. It will be interesting to see how New Jersey's democrats vote given the  reaction to their neighboring states decision and the actions of their democrats.

In Similar news in California, Judge Vaughn has allowed court proceedings in the Olsen-Boies (Perry vs. Schwarzenegger) case. In an interesting addition, Judge Vaughn will also allow video of the proceedings to be uploaded to Youtube.

....really?....that sends my mind down all kinds of speculative roads about why he would allow youtube. Surely he know it would end up there anyway. Is this strictly a show of transparency or is there other reasoning at work?

So court and legislative processes are coming out of the closet. Not that televised proceedings are a new invention. If your interested and have a mountain of patience, C-SPAN has been around for years. But this is different....with so much attention given to the issue of gay marriage, it truly has become THE wedge issue of  our time. No matter which way a judge rules or a legislative body votes, they know that there will be some form of angry mob on their doorstep the next day. So perhaps the move to televise is, in part an effort to cover their behinds, as much as it is to bring honesty and transparency to the process. It's a positive thing for us to see the arguments used for/against our lives, to see what our politicians actually do versus their words. We also get to know who are accusers are and hear their arguments. Which is why lawyers supporting Prop 8 resisted the move to televise based on "intimidation" of the witnesses. If you believe in your views...why hide them?

In addition, in our society so much is available for public scrutiny that when something happens behind closed doors, the public automatically looks on that with the health care debates which were promised to be broadcast on C-SPAN but are now happening in private session. The fact that we can't see whats happening gives rise to allegations of intrigue, shadowy cabals, and corruption.

Now...I don't need to know what Judge Vaughn has for lunch, or where he weighs in on the boxers or briefs debate, but I WILL be watching these hearings with great interest....


  1. I am all for visualizing the homophobes..ingraining their faces and words in my brain and remembering them on election day at the ballot box!

  2. Great to hear our plea was heard and found valid.

    I think it's really important for people to actually hear why we are fighting for our right to be able to get married, and why the other side considers it should not be allowed. All most people have now is sheer thought from some old times that it is wrong to be gay and it is wrong to let 'em gays get married... But have they ever gave it a thought? Have they ever tried to figure it out on their own, without the minister's lies from Sunday school? I seriously doubt that!

    We all have experiences of our own to back it up: remember how many times you considered something true without doubting it, and it seemed right, but once you questioned it and really gave it some though, you were coming to a conclusion that you were wrong before, and you had to change your mind about that! This is the same thing: people don't like to be bothered with using their brains too much, they just take it as is, as it always been. But if you'll just try to listen to what people have to say, you may start thinking on your own and you may change your mind.

    That's exactly what we need: for people to try to really question their opinions. I bet most of them never even tried to understand us, gays. This has to change. If only they would listen...

  3. I read up on the Perry vs. Schwarzenegger after your post and legally it seems like it could be the most important event in gay rights in the USA for a long time.

    Many commendations are saying that it is an all or nothing move. It is exciting and worrying at the same time. I can't stop thinking about it.

  4. What you won't get on camera is the back office lobbying, chattering, vote trading, back slapping, and posturing that is all part of politics. This is a good start, yes. But what you see on camera is all carefully crafted for playing to the constituency. Even that never really gets down to the heart of how a politician really feels about things.

    14 to 20.
    Homophobia wins again.

  6. Im glad about prop 8 stuff being broadcast, Im gonna watch for sure (on youtube or other ways), I think its really great this can happenn. The openess of this case, the way I see it, will reach many more people hopefully than previously was the case, and it will make people think about the gay rights more. Noone can really predict ofcourse what it will do, but I believe it's positive. And yes, Bryan I agree those debates on the healthcare stuff should have been accessible to the public, thats what a democracy is about! :)
    Ofcourse I feel bad about NewJersey, cant believe it. :( take care both of you.
    Summer x