Monday, October 26, 2009

Prop X, Where X = 8

Okay, I'm doing a switcharound because clearly I'd rather write about this than do a Q/A. So the Q/A can be Friday.

Apparently, over in the Marvel universe, a place I dare not look (Dune reference!), Matt Fraction had the "foresight" (self-proclaimed) to plan this story out two years ago, way before anyone even cared about Prop 8.

What story?

WTF is Prop 8?

Right, so Prop 8 is the California proposition to amend the California constitution to ban same sex marriage.

And Prop X is the thinly-veiled Marvel Universe equivalent wherein mutants aren't allowed to breed.

Here is why Prop X would never happen, even in a mutant-hating world:
  • Breeding and marriage aren't the same thing. Believe it or not, the Constitution actually establishes a fundamental right to privacy where it concerns what to do with your own body in the matter of conception. That's from Roe v. Wade, which lots of people hate but which is still law. The deal is that a woman can decide when, how, and if to become pregnant and/or stay pregnant. Granted, that's a very wide reading of the law, but considering the actual case law about procreation is very different than the case law about marriage, I could make the argument that it doesn't matter. The deal is that the federal Constitution serves as the entry-level for rights. A state can give more rights than the federal Constitution, but not less. That means that because of this fundamental right to privacy extended over the conception and pregnancy of a woman, a state constitution, no matter how amended, can not take away that right.
  • Too many comparisons to Communist China are never good for any right wing movement. Sorry, guys.
  • Unless you forcefully sterilize mutants, you can't actually stop them from breeding. And while various governments of the real world, including the United States, have been responsible for forced sterilization in the past, it's pretty much considered a horrible thing by just about everyone these days. Except more governments that a right wing movement wouldn't want to be associated with, such as Iraq, Iran, Venezuela and, you guessed it, Nazi Germany.
  • The reason Prop 8 passed was because President Obama got a whole heap of church-going African American and Latino voters out to the California polls in November that would not have normally gone. This was part of his grassroots campaign that worked beautifully for him and terribly for the separation of Church and State. There is no equivalent reason in the Marvel Universe right now for there to be a high voter turnout for Prop X.
Now none of this stops that whole Humanity Now! movement from trying, I guess. And maybe it's some sort of way for the writers and the readers of Marvel to feel satisfaction over the failure of a right-wing, anti-rights group's failure. Or maybe they'll (inconceivably, and that words does mean what I think it means) succeed, and that's a way to get us all angry and Doing Something.

Though unless we live in California, there's really not much for us to do at this point.

Well, unless we're self-proclaimed Comic Fan Obama. He could always repeal DOMA. That'd help.

Wait, sorry, talking about Prop 8 again.

Which is the point, I guess.

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