James Dobson on CNN

At lunch yesterday, I was perusing CNN.com to see their latest headlines. Right up top on the main page, they featured a link to a commentary by James Dobson, of "SpongeBob" and Focus on the Family fame.

Dobson complains that the media provided "cover" to U.S. Senators who opposed the federal constitutional ban by making it seem like this issue wasn't a top priority for most Americans:
Let's examine the claim that traditional marriage lacks support in the court of public opinion. As it always does when conservative issues are being debated, the liberal press produced a series of trumped-up polls indicating the issue was of no interest nationally. However, there was another "poll" that the media completely ignored. In fact, there were 19 of them. They represented the 19 states in which voters overwhelmingly defined marriage as being between a man and a woman.

Not one state has chosen by popular vote to permit marriages between homosexuals. Support for the family has been affirmed in every instance.
He goes on to provide the percentage of "yes" and "no" votes in each of the 19 states:

In Mississippi, traditional marriage was approved by a whopping 86 percent majority. Other state votes registered similar wide margins: Nevada (70 percent), Arkansas (75 percent), Georgia (77 percent), Kentucky (75 percent), Louisiana (78 percent), Nebraska (70 percent), Missouri (71 percent), Montana (66 percent), North Dakota (73 percent), Ohio (62 percent), Michigan (59 percent), Oklahoma (76 percent), Utah (66 percent), Kansas (70 percent) and Texas (75 percent). Even states considered to be more liberal voted for traditional marriage, including Hawaii (69 percent), Alaska (68 percent) and Oregon (57 percent).

Indeed, on the day before 48 senators bailed on marriage, a 20th state voted on its own constitutional amendment. It was Alabama, which supported traditional marriage by 81 percent to 19 percent!
Dobson's analysis is faulty. The reason these measures ended up on the ballots in so many states has more to do with a top-down political strategy than public desire to see this issue made a priority. But his commentary crystallizes the importance of defeating the ban in Wisconsin.

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At 1:43 PM, Blogger Paul said...

I was a bit surprised when I saw this commentary from Dobson on CNN.com (afterall, I've been told by many conservatives that CNN is terribly liberally biased). But you're right, his analysis is completely flawed.

First they used to say that the courts shouldn't decided this issue, but then the California Legislature approved a bill for same-sex marriage, which Schwartzeneggar vetoed. So now they're forced to use cumbersome language like "Not one state has chosen by popular vote to permit marriages between homosexuals." as Dobson did. So, in addition to courts not deciding this issue, it seems that the religious right thinks that our elected leaders shouldn't either.

What happens when a state defeats a gay marriage ban or approves of marriage equality by popular vote? We know it will happen eventually. What cumbersome, silly little phrase will they use to tell us just how "unpopular" gay marriage is then?



At 10:59 PM, Blogger Karmachrome said...

Jeez...check out his contribution to the World Bank of Rediculous Logic

Focus on the Family

At 12:50 AM, Blogger Jay said...

Here's an interesting story on the fight going on in the UK between the liberal and conservative wings of the Church of England.

I love when Dobson and others claim that marriage needs defending from activist US judges, completely ignoring the fact that this is a civil rights struggle going on EVERYWHERE in the world. The entire world is slowly realizing that gay and lesbian families have always been with us and will ALWAYS be with us. We can choose to embrace them or not. It's a choice each country and each community will make.

I know which side I want to be on. We will win eventually, why should we have to wait much longer??

I'm voting against this amendment so we can move on to the serious work of getting equal marriage rights for everyone.


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