Monday was the one year anniversary of the Iowa Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Iowa’s Defense of Marriage Act. We’ve seen our Governor flip flop on the issue and have seen the arrogance of the Democratic Leadership in Iowa’s Legislature in willfully denying the right of the people of Iowa to vote on the matter.
In this year-long debate I’ve kept hearing the civil rights meme brought up over and over and over again. On Monday, Craig Robinson at The Iowa Republican made some great points about viewing gay marriage in light of the civil rights argument that I couldn’t have said better myself.
Comparing the struggle of gay couples to what African-Americans, or women for that matter, had to endure in the past is disingenuous. Gay couples are not singled out and treated differently because of their appearance, as was the case with the civil rights movement. Gay couples instead have sought special rights based solely on their behavior.
If gay marriage is the civil rights issue of our time, then why are Culver and Gronstal unwilling to pass legislation that would put gay marriage rights into the Iowa code? The only way to guarantee gay couples the right to marry is to either pass a law allowing it or amend our constitution to support it. Instead, they cling to a court decision that validates their support of gay marriage.
The reason Iowans should have the right to vote on the issue of gay marriage is because our elected officials are cowards. Senator Grostal and Speaker of the House Pat Murphy both refuse to let a vote on a constitutional amendment see the light of day. The entire American system is based on representative government, yet on this issue, Governor Culver and Democrat legislative leaders has basically told the people of Iowa to shut up and deal with the Court’s ruling.
The people have a right to weigh in on this issue whether Culver or Gronstal think it is a civil rights issue or not. The 13th, 15th, and 19th Amendments to the US Constitution all dealt with civil rights and all went through the necessary process to be ratified. So why are we treating gay rights differently than the civil rights of African Americans or women? Because politicians like Mike Gronstal and Chet Culver know that there is no way the people of Iowa would vote to grant special rights to gay couples.
We have a right to vote. This should not be left to the courts to decide.