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21st Century Lesbian Trailer Trash

These are the mad musings of a middle aged woman, dyke, nurse, poet. I have a dog, a cat, a mobile home, and delusions of grandeur.

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Location: California, United States

Monday, July 10, 2006

The Circle of the Life of Bigots

Thanks to Elle Voyage, I found a 1959 article on the Blog of the Moderate Left. From the Minneapolis Star Tribune, it's about the attempt of the Minnesota legislature to write anti-miscegenation laws into their State constitution.

Would someone please explain to me how this is different from what is going on in the fight to prevent gay marriage?

1959 column by former Minneapolis Tribune columnist Catherine Kjerstinsen (1908-1977):

Opinion polls in 1959 revealed that a majority of Minnesotans support the proposed marriage amendment to the state Constitution, which would define marriage as the union of one man and one woman of the same race. That’s why a few Senate DFLers are working overtime to make sure that the full Senate — and you, the voters — don’t get to vote on it.

During the 1956 presidential campaign, Adalai Stevenson likened the push for interracial marriage to the fight against the Nazis. Sen. Hubert Humphrey agrees. “Discrimination isn’t just about other nations anymore,” he told WCCO Radio. “I still am not sure that if I had to depend on the Minnesota legislature to have my civil rights, that I would have them.” Humphrey claims that the proposed amendment would put discrimination in the Minnesota Constitution.

The NAACP, a negro advocacy organization, says that “[p]ublic opinion cannot be allowed to permanently enshrine discrimination into the Constitution.”

Miscegenation
1. The interbreeding of different races or of persons of different racial backgrounds.

2. Cohabitation, sexual relations, or marriage involving persons of different races.

4 Comments:

Blogger El Güero said...

Shocking that as late as 1959 Minnesota, an otherwise liberal state--traditionally Democratic and pro-labor--would have even considered such a law. The parallels to today are striking indeed.

8:52 PM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

I know that people can make arguments as to why the issue is not the same. But a thinking person will recognize the (rather frightening)parallels.

6:52 AM PDT  
Blogger Pat Kirby said...

The arguments for why the two issues--same sex/interracial marriage--are not the same are rather weak and usually founded on the "natural" argument.

I.e., it's natural for a man and woman of any color to marry where as not natural for two women to marry.

Except...back in the day, it wasn't considered "natural" for whites to despoil themselves with blacks.

There's really no good argument against letting consenting adults forge a legal commitment with the consenting adult of their choice.

10:30 AM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

I pretty much agree with you Pat. And once again we deal with that old bugaboo: separation of church and state. I have no argument with those who believe gay relationships and marriage are sinful. As long as they are not allowed to step on my civil rights as a citizen.

5:44 PM PDT  

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