Update: Chris Geidner has also posted a spectacular piece about this today that is a must read. A link to his article is also below.

The link below is to a post written by David Badash which is really superb and a must read for anyone following the Prop 8 trial in California. The judge issued a set of questions to be answered by both side. David breaks these questions down, adds links, and adds some commentary. Hew also links to full version of the Judge’s document on Scribd.

For some, the Prop 8 decision seems simple. Either Marriage Equality is right or wrong, but in reality, this court case and how the numerous more subtle questions are considered and answered has everything to do with how the future of this litigation will work out in the end.

David’s purpose is, I believe, clear. To cut out the legal jargon, and help everyone follow the process of this case. It is in everyone’s (who supports Marriage Equality) best interest, to understand what everyone in this court case has said and done.

I find myself wondering however, what does it all mean. By articulating the questions in this way, is he setting up the two sides to be responsible for the framing of the case in how it is seen at the next level of the Judiciary? Is he asking because he doesn’t feel these questions were addressed enough. Is this about making sure that the future of the trial remains focused on the merits of the case itself, instead of focusing on the merits of his decision?

I think I’ve been clear over time, that I believe that there are other issues for the LGBT community that must come before Marriage Equality, like basic non-discrimination in the workplace, housing and public accommodations. But for me, Prop 8 is about how decisions concerning rights are handled, even more than it is about Marriage Equality. Can questions about the civil rights of the minority be put up for a majority vote? What is the role of the state (or federal) government in protecting the institution of traditional marriage. How does this support for traditional marriage advance, improve or support the role of government? For me, these are some of the big questions that this case is articulating.

To be honest, all of this still makes me nervous. I think it is a given that this case will make its way up to the supreme Court, and given the far-right activist court now there, does this case have any chance of passing in support of Marriage Equality?

I stand by my assertion that actions like passing ENDA will affect more LGBT Americans than a positive outcome of this case (positive for marriage equality), but no one can deny that no other LGBT related issue has gathered the amount and intensity of support from the gay and lesbian community as this issue has. The right to fully recognized civil marriage stands as the single most significant symbol of the way gays and lesbians are treated as second class citizens. Every way that this is articulated helps move all LGBT issues forward by focusing the attention on that central question: does the majority of voters have a right to restrict any other group of people to second class and unequal status?

The 39 Questions Both Sides On The Prop 8 Trial Must Answer Today | The New Civil Rights Movement.

Chris Geidner’s article: http://www.metroweekly.com/news/?ak=5336

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