A lot of my close and not-so-close liberal friends seem pretty flabbergasted today. Turns out the state of North Carolina has voted on an amendment to its state constitution that would define the only valid marriages in the state as those between one man and one woman. This vote has passed by a fairly large majority, 61% to 39% as of this post.
The outrage! The shock! It’s pretty incredible how something like this could actually exist. But never fear, friends! Jeff is here to help ease the shock, and to make sense of these things for you in light of other fairly shocking things. I’ve prepared a short list of other tough topics that we’re all going to have to accept as reality before we can actually get shit done. Without further ado, here’s Jeff’s List of Five Very Surprising Things.
1. Fucking Heliocentrism
Posited as early as the third century BCE, this theory would later be reinforced by the findings of Nicolaus Copernicus and Johannes Kepler. It holds that the sun, not the Earth, is the center of the goddamn solar system (which was probably named thus in light of these shocking discoveries).
2. Fucking Gravity
Allegorically discovered when Sir Isaac Newton observed an apple falling from a tree, this insanity posits that objects are attracted by a force proportionate to their masses. Some would go so far as to posit that there exists a relationship between electro-magnetism and gravity. Shocking!
3. Fucking Subatomic Particles
Turns out, based on decades of exhaustive research spent bent over microscopes, that we are in fact random associations of matter arranged just so that we’ve got hearts and brains. Those individual components have observable individual components, the atoms, are composed of subatomic particles. Hell, those subatomic particles are theoretically composed of all manner of component pieces that folks at the LHC would like to understand better.
4. Fucking Pringles
Originally proposed in 1968, Pringles are food-like bent discs made of something like potatoes, salt, and grease from old women and cats. Scientists who ate the first Pringles made two startling conclusions: firstly, that once you popped open the large dolphin in which they were formed originally, it was hard to stop the Pringles from bleeding out; and secondly, that it would be better to store these “chips” in a large cylindrical tube to prevent people from eating them. The tube idea, and the first unofficial motto of Pringles, LLC, have stuck around to this day.
5. The Fucking Constitution
Go ahead and cry, Washington. Really, go ahead. It solves nothing. On the other hand, go ahead and gloat. We deserve some gloating. We passed our gay marriage legalization bill, and are on the right site of history. Just be sure that when you’re out gloating, you say thanks to my Constitutionalist brother. You see, friends, the same piece of the Constitution that enabled us to do the right thing has just been used in North Carolina to do the wrong thing. And the best part? It doesn’t care. The Constitution is concerned only with the forms and procedures, and could give a shit about you. No really, it doesn’t care about you. The first Americans who read the Constitution noticed this fairly large hole, and the result was the Bill of Rights. Until there is an amendment added to the Constitution of the United States that makes a final and legally binding decision on fifty states and 300 million plus citizens, the status quo of individual states deciding for themselves how to handle domestic partnerships and marriage will stand.
“So let’s change the Constitution!” I’m with you, but I must ask a question. Given the population of this country and how close the last elections have been, do you think a majority of voting citizens would vote in support of “gay marriage” amendment (I use quotes because the wording of this amendment would need to be fairly broad so as to include a more nuanced understanding of gender and provide wholesale the same rights and privileges afforded to heterosexual married couples)? I have my doubts. That might be skepticism, but it’s also realistic. Do you know how long it takes to get the wheels of a Constitutional plebiscite going in this country? If brought to bare, and then this amendment fails to gain a popular majority, do you know how long it will take to get another one up? There is no precedent for this, but my guess is “a long fucking time.”
The current arrangement allows some of my friends to be lawfully wed in the very near future. We did this as Washingtonians and should be proud of it. We stand with Iowa, Vermont, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Washington D.C. on the right side of history. As for the rest of the country? Let them make awful decisions and be dicks. Let them live in the stone age. They are entitled to do so right now, and I see that as a good thing. I believe firmly in democracy, even when the results are off. A majority of North Carolinian voters have made an adult decision, and it should be respected as such. However, it is a shit decision. If the end product of that decision is that Washington State will become a new home to a few lovely queer couples, I welcome them with open arms.