2012 Election | Barack Obama | Gay Marriage | Minnesota | News

Marriage Equality Looms Large Over Obama's Minnesota Visit

Obamaminnesota

President Obama takes his reelection campaign to Minnesota tomorrow, and analysts think both his overall popularity and gay marriage endorsement will help defeat a ballot measure that will further restrict marriage rights in the Northstar State.

From the Washington Post:

Minnesota’s[ballot measure] would toughen current limits on gay rights and etch the ban into the state constitution. Obama won 54 percent of the vote in the state and is expected to win it again this year, so opponents of the ban are hoping enough Minnesotans follow the president’s self-described evolution on gay marriage so they can defeat it.

John Murphy, an expert on presidential rhetoric at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, said it’s not a stretch to think some Democrats previously unlikely to vote in favor of gay rights would be won over by Obama. When presidents take a new stand on a hot-button social issue, Murphy said, it can motivate dedicated party followers to change their own views and stay on the same page as their party’s leader.

“I imagine his newly unequivocal support for gay marriage is likely to convince at least some die-hard Minnesota Democrats to swallow personal qualms they might have in order to give their side a win,” Murphy said.

The discriminatory measure's defeat may also be aided by the fact Mitt Romney has yet to open an office in Minnesota, nor does he seem inclined to spend time and money in a largely Democratic state he lost to socialyl conservative primary rival Rick Santorum. Plus, it's unlikely Romney wants to get involved in a marriage fight when the majority of the nation supports recognizing same-sex relationships.

Obama, meanwhile, seems in it to win it. Hopefully he'll his use his clout to the best of his ability.

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Comments

  1. Like he used his clout to get health care reform. He'll spout a lot of "fierce advocacy" and do absolutely nothing.

    Posted by: Roscoe | May 31, 2012 8:05:55 PM


  2. maybe I'm too much of a worry wort, but this sounds way too optimistic.

    I know the polls say a majority support marriage equality, but that has never worked out at the polls. And only the polls count. Let's hope i'm wrong.

    Posted by: dms | May 31, 2012 9:12:05 PM


  3. Target is "neutral" on the issue. Contrast that with real equality-minded companies like Microsoft, Starbucks, et al.

    Posted by: PDX Guy | May 31, 2012 9:32:46 PM


  4. Target is NOT neutral on it. They continue to finance rabidly anti-gay candidates. They want you to believe they're neutral so you'll shop there. Don't. Boycott's still on.

    Posted by: candide001 | May 31, 2012 9:43:06 PM


  5. See this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lEU8c8sCfMc

    Don't vote for more war. Get rid of Obama. Get rid of Romney. Get rid of corporate control.

    See this:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/05/supreme-court-corporate-human-rights-kiobel-royal-dutch-petroleum_n_1322007.html

    So now corporations are people but they aren't responsible for anything? Pay attention to Alito's response to corporate thievery and murder: "What business does a case like that have in the courts of the United States?"

    If you agree that this amounts to the totalitarian rule of corporations in America, find out how to get involved with occupy this summer. Give money. Also, get involved with democracy and the election process and the democratic party. Take it over. Spread the word.

    When people tell you how great Obama and Hilary and Pepsico and Shell are, refuse to be friends with them. Do not eat with them.

    Most importantly, DON'T let this election be about gay marriage. Hold Obama accountable for his actions. And Clinton, who just made a surprise visit to Sweden behind closed doors at the announcement of Assange's extradition to Sweden from England. Remember manning and the new powers to kill American citizens without trial, judge, or jury - which Obama personally oversees.

    See:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/29/world/obamas-leadership-in-war-on-al-qaeda.html?pagewanted=all

    America, end this now. The only way is to become political and to become a lobby.

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 10:11:10 PM


  6. Also, incorporate yourself. This is possible and gives you rights that you never new you had.

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 10:14:45 PM


  7. *knew

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 10:15:36 PM


  8. I'll bit, screech who should we vote for

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 31, 2012 11:04:58 PM


  9. And personally I stand behind the wars we're in and believe we need to win them. Just my opinion

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 31, 2012 11:07:48 PM


  10. Vote for yourself and those who hold your values. If you can honestly say that American foreign policy embodies your values, vote your conscience. If you can say that the American economic policies that led to the crash in 08 embody your values, then vote your conscience. Remember, Obama actually claimed that no laws were broken! Lies! It's called securities fraud! The bankers are his friends! In a race between Obama and Romney I don't care who you vote for. People should be political 24/7 and you should either run for office or find someone who is neither neo-con or neo-dem and campaign for them. This means getting young people out there and spending time and money.

    Vote Obama. Vote Jesus. Vote velociraptors. Just make sure you nail Obama every step of the way for his failed policies (or nail Romney every step of the way for his same failed policies). But change the future by being involved today.

    I want to set fire to liberal apathy. March in the street, is my message. Invest time and money, is my message.

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 11:30:21 PM


  11. And also ask the right questions. Yes, I know that sounds lame. But a lot of people never question or examine the concepts they parrot.

    Ex: What is democracy? Isn't a gang rape a democracy where 5 consent to intercourse and 1 objects? Is voting by majority actually a democratic value, then?

    Does the united states have a right to act unilaterally? Does any organization on earth have that right? Or is there a responsibility to act multilaterally?

    Since the second reference is obscure, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unilateralism

    There is this taboo in North American culture that says we mustn't question these things. Bring it up at your next dinner party lol.

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 11:39:17 PM


  12. On what ground do you support these wars - these gang rapes of other countries?

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 11:43:26 PM


  13. see this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=Wz3uDTRZgXQ

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 11:53:08 PM


  14. The more you dig into these, the more you see how widespread it is. If one third of American women in the American military experience assault, then you do the math. War and rape go hand in hand.

    Posted by: screech | May 31, 2012 11:58:43 PM


  15. Maybe you need a little Jesus? "Blessed are the peacemakers, they are the children of God." Maybe you need a little Paul? "So far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all." Sounds like good advice. The militarization of the world, at the hands of America, has led to millions of deaths. You prop up more dictators and arm more militants than is sanely possible. See East Timor, where the US armed Indonesia to slaughter the civilian population. See Turkey and Iraq, who the US armed to kill the Kurds in 88. You aided Sadam in his crimes and then punished him for it!

    Of course if you value profit, then this is all stupendous! After all, all these guns cost money and the US gains rights to all the natural resources. So vote your values, then. But the tide of the world has begun to change. You just might find yourself on the other end of the arms you sell.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 12:17:24 AM


  16. No? No one wants to talk about American foreign policy and American values? Or maybe Obama's policies and values? See:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AIMJG--YolQ

    Isn't that nice. Let's talk about American values. I'd love to. The problem is I can't find Americans who want to talk about policy or values. Well, I'm off to bed GeorgeM.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 12:53:58 AM


  17. @Screech
    I know a lot of what you speak about. I don't find any of it pretty. I question your bit about no country has the "right" to... What do you mean by a right? people talk about "rights" that people have or don't have, but they can't justify such statements without commiting fallacy. I find nothing one can know about "rights" in the imperical sense and I can't find anything but imagination outside of imperical knowledge. There are facts and truth values for measurable things - science. Nobody has been able to justify logically without commiting fallacy anything having to do with metaphysics in any sense ever and never will either. Metaphysics are imaginary. So explain to me what you mean by this elusive "right," please. Do you need an explaination what I mean by "Metaphysics?" I am talking about all normative questions: "Ethics","Aesthetics","Political Science", etc...

    Posted by: NullNaught | Jun 1, 2012 2:16:06 AM


  18. I mean ‘rights’ according to the Wilsonian doctrine espoused by Reagan, Bush I & II, Clinton and Obama. One of the points of Wilsonian doctrine is that the US has the right to act in a self interested way concerning the resources of US colonies (it is an imperialistic doctrine). Chomsky is one political theorist who wrote about this doctrine’s impact on Clinton: “The Clinton doctrine, presented to Congress, was that the United States is entitled to resort to ‘unilateral use of military power’ to ensure ‘uninhabited access to key markets, energy supplies and strategic resources.’” That’s in Chomsky’s ‘Hopes and Prospects’ (2010). Note the use of ‘unilateral’ and ‘strategic resources’.

    Politicians could be using ‘right’ in two senses here. In one sense ‘right’ is used in the sense of a legal right. In another sense, ‘right’ could express a sentiment of entitlement according to nature. In that sense, everyone acts in their own interests and so the US has an ability to do likewise. I think these are the general senses in which people are using the term ‘right’.

    Values create different kinds of rights, viz. civil/legal rights, natural rights, human rights, moral rights, etc. JS Mill, an empiricist philosopher, grounded legal/civil/natural rights on the experience of pleasure and pain. Pleasure and pain are values that create rights in an elaborate argument in Mill’s book ‘Utilitarianism’. Kant the rationalist creates moral/human rights out of the respect for will, in effect claiming that all rational agents have moral/human rights. Most people develop a system where the two of these theories interact. This is the source of rights. The values that create rights are pleasure/pain (liking or not liking something) and respect for will (acknowledging abstract value).

    Both empirical and abstract values are explainable and human phenomena. But in the legal/natural sense of the term ‘right’ outlined above, I take it that ‘a right to act’ means ‘acting according to law’ or ‘acting according to nature’ in the case of US interests. Concerning ‘according to law’, law is created through mutual agreement and consent (international law enforces agreed upon rules between parties). Concerning ‘according to nature’, the reference is merely to a possessed ability.

    I would make the case that the US has no legal/natural right to act unilaterally, in the same sense that politicians use those words.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 5:31:07 AM


  19. Your deeper philosophical point I will contest in a friendly way by claiming that science does in fact make metaphysical claims concerning physics.

    There are plenty of non-material things. Consider how a physicalist might account for density, semantic properties, or psychological phenomena. If science involves a complete description of the universe as Stephen Hawking suggests, then how is a physicalist going to account for things like mental processes? General consensus says that science is reductive in the sense that science can account for all the complexities of life by reducing a concept into a more primitive language. So density is the easiest to understand: (ρ=m/V). Here density is translated into simpler terms of a relation between mass and volume and is hence reductive. Science engages the question of what the universe can be reduced to. It would be nice to have a grand unified theory for example. But lets say that you can come up with a list of fundamental particles and forces. We might call it the master list and on the master list are particles/forces X, Y, Z. It is a metaphysical claim that ‘consciousness’, for example, cannot be on that list of fundamental ingredients to the universe. Science makes metaphysical claims all the time.

    Metaphysical claims are claims about value – and science makes them. I think that closer examination of Kant and Mill leads one to the conclusion that there are ways (empirical and rational) to determine human value.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 6:56:45 AM


  20. @ SCREECH
    I’m curious as to what you think of the “holographic principle” put forth by string theorist.

    Posted by: 1♥ | Jun 1, 2012 7:40:41 AM


  21. @Screech
    Science can not make normative claims. People who make normative claims are not speaking as scientist. Science consists of what is measurable, hence what is knowable in the empirical sense.
    There are claims made for example such as string theory and the coppenhagen interpretation that are not science. When people sell these things as science, they betray a fundamental misunderstanding of science. Science consists of the method, the things we learn through the method, the technology we create through the and the act of conservation of that knowledge through recording and teaching that knowledge. That is all. The method requires measurablitiy of some physical property. Do we actually have a basic disagreement there? If you think science contains claims about what consciousness is or is not you are sadly mistaken. There is no way to measure directly this phenomenon called consciousness. Consciousness has not been clearly defined. It is not of the realm of science, but of the realm of philosophy.
    Kant and Mills et. al. make claims bassed on their suppositions and oppinions. There values are not shared by everyone. They are not objectively true. How would you go about demonstrating their value systems as having any basis in reality?
    In other words, if there were a conscious god who cared about human beings, what would be human rights or ethical would be whatever that god thought it should be or not if it chose nothing at all. One would then have to demonstrate this god and demonstrate they new the mind of this god in order to demonstrate that their set of ethical values was correct. By not having any ability to disprove the existance of this god I could say "I know the mind of god and he says screech is unethical!" and you would have no way to refute that. How is Kant or Mills or Locke or Hume on any more sure grounds than anyone else when they speculate? You have named two disagreeing systems amongst many. There is only one measurable science. That is what is. That is how you know it is real and not some stuck-up jacka$$es imagination that they know better than someone else what is right and wrong. Show it or shove it.
    As to legal rights; the U.S. has unilateral veto power over the only agreed apon organization that provides "rights" out of their a$$. Show me that the fact that the U.S. is able to ignore international law doesn't mean they have the legal right. You have to rely on political science wich will go right back to normative claims I will have to point out you can't back up with factt, ultimately.
    You can't go from an is to an ought, now can you? Opinion and fact are two different things and you can't make the one into the other.

    Posted by: NullNaught | Jun 1, 2012 8:24:31 AM


  22. @holographic principle
    Though it is counter-intuitive at first, I actually think it is a good way to interpret our model of a universe in one sense: the encoding of information seems to occur at all levels of nature. Biological reproduction (encoding DNA), language (for example, Ruth Millikan constructs a model of the mind that essentially uses symbol production and symbol consumption that gives rise to a semantic account; also see Grice), perceptual systems (think about how photo receptors send information to areas of the brain to be processed), cognition (the modularity of mind theory posits adaptations useful in evolutionary psychology), to MP3’s and digital media – even light can be quantized which is essentially to think of it as if light is information. For example, just like it takes time for information to travel it takes time for light to travel. So I see how we, as human beings, have really latched on to explaining the world in terms of codified information. The stuff that makes up the information we quantize is determined by the encoders and decoders.

    If I could get over the strangeness of it, it might be the best way of understanding gravity and light.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 9:18:00 AM


  23. Thank you for your response.

    There is still a great deal to learn about the universe

    Posted by: 1♥ | Jun 1, 2012 9:24:03 AM


  24. @Screech
    Yeah, that's what I thought. You don't want to criticize my definition of science and you don't want to offer a deffinition of your own. You won't either admit normative questions are a matter of opinion and not fact and thus not knowable, nor will you refute this. I have never had a conversation with a person of letters end so quickly.
    Good luck to you with that lighting a fire thing; I think you're onto something with that telling liberals to help sink Obama and expecting people to be political all the time idea. Sounds like a lot of fun. Good aproach, reasonable expectations. I think you will go far with this. And never learn to talk down to people, that would make you look patronizing, wouldn't it?

    Posted by: NullNaught | Jun 1, 2012 10:10:28 AM


  25. I was just thinking about what you said - don't take offense. Well, whether or not we disagree depends on what you mean by “The method requires measurability of some physical property.” In virtue of what is a property physical? Define ‘physical’. I don’t know anyone who would say that theoretical physics is not a science, yet they postulate mathematical entities all the time. Now my point about ‘consciousness’ is just that physicalists, which I am, are committed to reducibility. So what is the physical world reducible to? If you claim, contra Descartes, that consciousness is not a fundamental thing that the physical world is reducible to – that claim is metaphysical. Metaphysics is concerned with what there is in the world and how to characterize what there is. When you say “There is no way to measure directly this phenomenon called consciousness” are you saying that physics cannot account for it? Then physics cannot give a complete account of the world. On the contrary, I do think physics can account for such things (see ‘supervenience’: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supervenience). So I do think science makes claims about value; what you call ‘physical property’ is just a value.

    Kant and Mill do have value systems based in reality. I don’t accept some sort of Christian Scientist view that says evil and pain are illusions, for example. Pleasure and pain, Mill’s values, are very real. The acknowledgement of abstract value is also very real. Just to be clear, I’m not claiming that ethics and value theory belong to the sciences. I’m claiming that science makes metaphysical claims and that human values create rights. You indicated that metaphysics is imaginary – pleasure and pain are not imaginary. And neither are the attributions of abstract value. And I don’t know why you’re bringing God into the conversation. You seem to think that claims are objectively true in virtue of God’s saying so or they are subjective and relative to the individual. I would say that claims are true inter-subjectively and the same is true of value systems of the type Kant and Mill consider.

    Posted by: screech | Jun 1, 2012 10:24:10 AM


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