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Thursday, May 29, 2008

This Morning in Gay Marriage

posted by on May 29 at 8:47 AM

New York’s governor orders state agencies to recognize gay marriage performed elsewhere (Massachusetts, California, sane countries), essentially legalizing gay marriage in that state.

Bill O’Reilly challenges an opponent of same-sex marriage in California to come up with a reason gay marriage would be bad for California that isn’t about religion—and the opponent can’t do it and O’Reilly comes to predicting that California’s anti-gay-marriage amendment won’t pass.

And Macy’s takes out full page ads in NYT and LA Times celebrating the legalization of same-sex marriage in California, and—naturally—urging same-sex couples to register at Macy’s.

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Registries are tacky. If anyone asks where you're registered, tell them you would be grateful for any small thing, if anybody thought to bring you a gift, and you are only looking forward to seeing them at the joyous occasion. If you get two identical toasters, smile and act pleased.

Posted by elenchos | May 29, 2008 9:10 AM

Bill O on the side of justice? next thing you know, Pat Buchanan will start to make sense.

Posted by max solomon | May 29, 2008 9:10 AM

The bit about Macy's makes me wonder: Could this be the perfect conservative conundrum? I mean, the idea of two-income-no-kids gay couples having lavish weddings must make the cash registers in any conservative's heart jingle, but it comes directly into conflict with their impulse to appease evangelical Christian zealots so they'll keep voting against their economic interests. Oh, what a dilemma!

The Wall Street Journal brand of conservatives must be twisting themselves into knots trying to figure out ways to encourage gays to drop five or six figures on a day-long event while continuing to demonize them in order to pander to the GOP's fundamentalist base.

Posted by flamingbanjo | May 29, 2008 9:11 AM

Wait wait wait. BILL O'REILLY? What kind of bizzarro world, year 3000 bullshit is this?

Posted by karst | May 29, 2008 9:12 AM

RE: Macy's. Let's hope that capitalism remains the most powerful religion in this country.

Posted by Bub | May 29, 2008 9:14 AM

I am soooooooooooo not registering at Macy's.

I am however that much closer to getting married. Good news.

Posted by It's Mark Mitchell | May 29, 2008 9:15 AM

Bill... making... sense?

I think a pig just flew by my window.

Posted by nvt2125 | May 29, 2008 9:28 AM

Bill O'Reilly challenges an opponent of same-sex marriage in California to come up with a reason gay marriage would be bad for California that isn't about religion—and the opponent can't do it

Perhaps Bill should have dug up either Dennis Prager or Michael Medved, both of whom explicitly avoid making religious arguments in their case against same-sex marriage on their radio shows. (not that their case is convincing, in fact I kinda forget what their argument is).

Posted by jmr | May 29, 2008 9:30 AM

I will happily buy a gift from your Macy's registry should you choose to renew your vows and get your marriage certificate in the USA. PS Can you register for those personalized picture condoms at Macys?? STILL laughing about that one. So.freakin.funny

Posted by bridezilla | May 29, 2008 9:32 AM

My only advice for those registering (wedding or baby showers) is you should choose a national chain that has a location near where your out-of-town/state friends and family live. So far my ever classy family has used Target for the past ten years, since it has a wide variety of crapola at a huge range of prices for the cash flow challenged.

Posted by yucca flower | May 29, 2008 9:33 AM

That's where Capitalism as an economic theory, and Conservatism as a political theory come to loggerheads, FB.

Capitalism is always going to opt for whatever condition or situation best provides for the flow of capital, which in this case clearly is one that supports gay marriage, as it opens up numerous new opportunities for capital to move through the system, of which Macy's management seems to be quite cognizant.

But, as you say, Conservatives, most of whom presumably would consider themselves right-thinking Capitalists, are put in the position of having to decide whether their moral/religious or their economic principles are going to come out on top. I would expect that those who consider themselves Social Conservatives first and foremost are going to continue to vote against their own economic self-interest, just as they have always done, while those who consider themselves predominantly Capitalists will embrace whatever the system demands in order to maintain fluidity.

Which, in my mind suggests the status-quo on the right side of the socio-economic spectrum isn't going to change significantly as a result of this. Moral absolutists will continue to stand their ground against the onrushing wave, while economic pragmatists will find a way to ride it.

The good news for the rest of us is, I suppose, that it's pretty clear which of these two factions is going to survive in the long-run.

Posted by COMTE | May 29, 2008 9:38 AM

Well, if even Bill O'Reilly is talking like this, is it safe to assume that it's becoming a more commonly-accepted truth that there is absolutely no non-religious reason to oppose gay marriage? I really hope so.

Posted by Hernandez | May 29, 2008 9:38 AM

@1 - Agree registries are tacky, but they are a necessary evil unfortunately. Most people want and need that guidance. Some people seriously get flustered trying to come up with something on their own. And as many times as you can say nothing is necesssary, they're going to get you something anyway. Might as well be what you want.

For the record, I was going to register at Macy's already, now even happier to do so. Will also create a Honeymoon registry and for the socially concious types, ask that they donate to Equal Rights WA.

Posted by defman23 | May 29, 2008 9:40 AM

How does it help our economic health to borrow more money from China for wedding gifts?

Posted by elenchos | May 29, 2008 9:47 AM

We were registered at Macy's, which was the Bon Marche then, and god DAMN if the gifts we received from there (picked out by us) weren't of the most spectacularly terrible quality imaginable. You'd get better quality stuff at Target. Best registry option: Laguna Vintage American Pottery in Pioneer Square.

I have to take issue with Elenchos @1. I wish that EVERYBODY would register at the tackiest places imaginable, and when your gifts are not pleasing to you, throw a massive fit. Make sure the video camera is on.

Posted by Fnarf | May 29, 2008 9:50 AM

Oh my, kudos to Bill O'Reilly.

Posted by Mr Fuzzy | May 29, 2008 9:59 AM

Wow, way to go Billo.

Posted by AMB | May 29, 2008 10:02 AM

Macy's? Never. NEVER!!

Posted by Balt-O-Matt | May 29, 2008 10:04 AM

Finally, some good news for a change.

Posted by Tiktok | May 29, 2008 10:10 AM

When I get married this summer I am not accepting gifts, but I am going to give one to Barak Obama.

Because of his outspoken support of the right of individual states to deny equal protections to entire classes of citizens, I will buy him his very own drinking fountain.

That should make him proud.

Posted by patrick | May 29, 2008 10:23 AM

OMG- I re-read the O'Riley bit ten times before I realized that there wasn't a type-o.

Good for him!

Posted by Wes | May 29, 2008 10:33 AM

It's mind-warping why the right is so opposed to gay marriage. If it wasn't for their alliance with the fundies, they probably wouldn't.

As a Federalist friend of mine once pointed out, discrimination is a poor economic choice, as it limits your potential for business. Gay marriage would benefit all aspects of the wedding market (think of the business done by SF flower shops a few years back, thanks in part to FFA&D). Then it would go on to benefit the insurance industry, the housing industry, etcetera.

I'm just saying, there's no good economic reason to be against gay marriage. I imagine many Republicans who oppose gay marriage in public (or stay mum about it, like Cheney) are looking forward to a time when they don't have to suck evangelical teat.

Posted by K | May 29, 2008 10:36 AM

I guess that's two and a half states, then? Forty seven and a half to go.

Posted by Beguine | May 29, 2008 10:41 AM

The best part of NY backing CA marriages is that Macy's and everyone else gets a chance to have gay couples marry a SECOND time and spend all that money they should have spent on their retirement funds.

In the end, if the money flows, the market will start fighting for it to continue.

Just ask all the people who buy those Bridal magazines ... hmmm, there's a marketing concept, gay bridal magazines ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | May 29, 2008 10:49 AM

I also had to read the O'Reilly paragraph a couple of times. That's pretty awesome... it's the same question I ask folks who are morally opposed to homosexuality. Name one non-religious reason why it's wrong... no one has ever been able to do it.

As for registries, I really don't care whether couples do it or not. I usually end up using something from the registry as a starting point for a gift and then go from there. We registered -- I felt weird about it, but in the end my family and my parents friends wanted to know something specific to get us. If our friends got us something it was usually not from the registry...

Posted by Julie | May 29, 2008 11:00 AM

MARRIAGE as applied in its current definition grants unions lasting 50+ years, 2 generations of children and grandchildren as equal to a couple of horny drunks who don't even remember which chapel in Vegas they stopped at. Along that spectrum, there are all the serial matrimonialists, covers for immigration, closeted men marrying their beards, and just plain fucked up people who beat each other and/or their kids between anniversary parties. The definition of marriage seems loose enough already, and adding "2 people with matching plumbing" to the definition's inclusions will have to be proven to be the singular arrangement that will cause all others to fail. We plan to take advantage of it ASAP, in order to increase the number of people that will be negatively affected by attempts to overturn on the ballot.

Posted by stagelefty | May 29, 2008 11:00 AM


Registries should only be used to let interested parties know what patterns of china, crystal, silver (and possibly fine linen) you have selected and how many place settings and which pieces you are hoping to acquire. That way, people that are stuck for an idea can by you a single item that will contribute to a matched set. Otherwise they are tacky, tacky, tacky.

Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me | May 29, 2008 12:07 PM


You want another concept... Gay Mail (Male?) Order "Brides"...

Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me | May 29, 2008 12:09 PM

I hate to be the pessimist, here, but O'Reilly's recognition that there is no non-religious justification for hetero-only marriage dovetails nicely with the more basic fundamentalist effort to break down the separation between church and state -- if that separation weren't there, a religious justification for hetero-only marriage *would* be adequate, given how pervasively religious this country is. I suspect this is more the direction his mind is headed: the fact that there's no way to stop the movement toward gay marriage indicates how deeply the first amendment has screwed things up in this country.

Posted by A in NC | May 29, 2008 12:10 PM

The best part of this Don Schweitzer guy is he was suspended from the bar for assault . . .

January 10, 2003

DONALD PHILIP SCHWEITZER [#166412], 43, of Pasadena was suspended for one year, stayed, placed on 36 months of probation with a 60-day actual suspension and was ordered to take the MPRE within one year. Credit toward the actual suspension will be given for an interim suspension which began July 14, 2002. The order took effect Jan. 10, 2003.

Schweitzer pleaded guilty to felony assault, a charge later reduced to a misdemeanor. He had an ongoing custody battle with his estranged wife and one evening entered her apartment and beat her boyfriend. Schweitzer broke his hand in the assault and the victim suffered jaw pain and significant bleeding.

The criminal conduct did not involve moral turpitude.

In mitigation, he has no record of discipline in nine years, was having severe family problems at the time that affected his emotional state, and reports involvement in community activities. His actions cost him his job as an Orange County deputy district attorney.

June 14, 2002

DONALD PHILIP SCHWEITZER [#166412], 43, of Norwalk was placed on interim suspension June 14, 2002, following a conviction for. The suspension ended Sept. 12 and he returned to active status. He was ordered to comply with rule 955.

Posted by Dean P | May 29, 2008 12:35 PM

Oh, and in case anyone is interested. Here's my registry:

Luxembourg Green by Faberge

Bunny Stemware by William Yeoward

Burgundy Flatware by Reed & Barton

(All are available at Bloomingdales, but Slog would not let me throw the links up...)

I'm just a few place settings away from 12 place settings. (And, of course, one can never have enough serving pieces...) Any help will be appreciated!

Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me | May 29, 2008 12:39 PM

@26 "MARRIAGE as applied in its current definition grants unions lasting 50+ years, 2 generations of children and grandchildren as equal to a couple of horny drunks who don't even remember which chapel in Vegas they stopped at."

Actually, most of the Greatest Generation that married during WW II didn't expect to live more than 20 years. Average lifespans were fairly short, there was a World War, the flu had killed a lot of people in 1918 after another World War, and men frequently died in their 40s.

This "myth" that they married for 50+ years is just that - a myth.

Posted by Will in Seattle | May 29, 2008 12:49 PM

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