Paul Bogan writes angrily yet eloquently about California passing Proposition 8, which bans same-sex marriages. One of his points is that Californians could not possibly have misunderstood the clear wording of the bill.
This is East Coast Thinking, which I understand because I spent more time there than here. On the east coast, when someone cuts you off on the parkway, you think, “What an asshole!” But when you get to California, everyone seems so nice. In short order, your perception of your fellow residents changes. Then, when someone cuts you off on the freeway, you think, “What an idiot!” I’ve spoken with a lot of California transplants on this exact issue and it’s pretty unanimous.
This election, I voted no on darn near every prop1, and I did this because I actually took the better part of a day to research them all. However, I think most people do research at the voting booth. They skim and make a gut reaction.
That’s why we voted for a $10B down payment on a train to San Francisco. Yes, people, it’s a down payment! It will cost way more – maybe 2-3 times that! Can’t we start with decent local public transportation first? JetBlue is already doing a fine job flying us to SF. I want a train that takes me from Huntington Beach to the Santa Monica Promenade, Hollywood and Highland, and Old Town Pasadena.2 If you insist on building a bullet train to somewhere cool, make it Las Vegas. San Fran is perhaps the coolest city in America, but it’s crazy expensive. Even with gambling and strip clubs, Vegas is downright cheap in comparison.3
Ignorance and misguided compassion is also why we voted for $980M for children’s hospitals when we just allotted $750M in 2004. Newsflash: we still have $350M of that yet to grant, under the same rules as this prop. This is akin to taking a huge cash advance on our credit card when we’re already knee deep in debt and we don’t even need the money!
I understand how Paul – who is obviously so wise in the way of (political) science – might think Californians could not possibly be dumb enough to vote incorrectly on Prop 8. However, the commercials that called for no on 8 were vague on what you were voting against. They made it clear you were voting against discrimination, but never said of what. I think a lot of people heard prop 8 was the gay marriage bill and thought, “Why, I think Gay Bill’s a swell guy. He should totally have the right to get married. Yes on 8!” OK, maybe not that bad, but just yesterday I heard a guy call into Headline news4 to say that he was not gay, and that he “really, really loves the ladies”, but he thought gays should have the right to get married. Unfortunately, the drafters of said proposition used “confusing language” and he accidentally voted yes when he meant no. Is he the exception that proves the rule? Maaaaaaybe. But I’m often reminded of a quote from the late, great George Carlin:
“Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that.”
Of course, he also said:
“In America, anyone can become president. That’s the problem.”
- Yes on 11 and 12, if you must know.
- Yes, I realize that in 5 years, through the wonders of “gentrification”, they’ll all be the same place. Like when I discovered that San Diego’s Gaslamp District was a carbon copy of Old Town Pasadena (or vice-versa). Now, the Promenade is slowly remaking itself into the image of The Grove. SoCal is becoming one big homogenized crap factory.
- Probably because because SF has better, more expensive strip clubs.
- Why they accept phone calls now I cannot fathom. It’s not news; hell, it’s barely opinions. HLN: If you need more filler, just show your sexy female news anchors shooting coy looks at the camera, maybe biting their lip a little. On slow days, licking a lollipop or sensuously eating a banana. Ratings will skyrocket.