Thursday, February 09, 2006

Eyman Idiot

Recently, the Washington legislature passed House Bill 2661, outlawing discrimination against homosexuals in matters of housing, banking and employment. The passage was largely thanks to the tireless work of Ed Murray, who predicted on the day of its passage that there would be many challenges ahead. Well, we didn't have to wait long. Tim Eyman has announced that he will put an initiative on the ballot this Fall to strike down the bill. First of all, David Schmader hits it right on the head when he says that having minority rights determined purely by the majority is a bit fucked. Can you imagine if, after forced desegregation, Southern states were simply able to put popular initiatives on the ballot saying in so many words "nope, you know what, we're not crazy about this"? Good government looks after the minority when majority opinion threatens.

Anyway, when I heard about jackass Eyman's intention, I began to wonder how you could possibly justify such a move in the press. I mean, is there any appeal other than to straight-up bigotry? How can you possibly argue that anti-discrimination laws are undesirable? So I did a bit of searching and found that, unsurprisingly, he's not providing any explanation:

Eyman would not discuss his motivation for filing the measures except to say that voters should have the right to decide an issue this important and that "I do not believe a majority of voters are in favor of preferential treatment based on what group they belong to."

Uh, jackass, anti-discrimination isn't the same as preferential treatment. What this means is that you can't decide not to rent an apartment to a couple solely because they are gay, or to deny them a job for which they are qualified for the same reason. He doesn't attempt any other explanation because we all know that it boils down to conservative bigotry. The Christian Coalition of Washington is backing Eyman's effort. So, fuck you to Tim Eyman and to any so-called Christians who support discrimination.

Cuba and Denmark

The Poor Man is one of the funniest and most entertaining blogs out there, and one of the few that I read on a daily basis, but I gotta take him to task for this post on the Muhammad cartoon issue. Seems like a pretty dodgy game of moral equivalence that he's playing. Yes, the situation in Guantanamo Bay is outrageous; so is the violence being threatened and carried out by Islamist protesters. Neither justifies the other. If the Left cedes the protection of freedom of speech to the Right, then we're truly lost as a movement. It should be possible to recognize the Bush administration's abuses of power without subsequently bending over to anyone who challenges our ideals.