It was with dismay that I read the headlines this morning, which informed me that the California Supreme Court upheld Proposition 8. The proposition, which barely passed with a simple majority vote, banned same-sex marriage in the state of California. The arguments against the proposition’s passage include the fact that it contradicts the equal protection clause in the state constitution, as well as the assertion that Proposition 8 revised the constitution, rather than simply amending it.
Gay marriage aside, I have several problems with this turn of events. Effectively, we’ve been shown that a simple majority vote can eliminate the rights of a minority group, the state constitution’s equal protection clause be damned. Secondly, this shows that only a simple majority is needed to rewrite the state constitution. California has been shown to be nothing less than a tyranny of the majority. If they (voters) can deny one group (gays) from exercising their rights (marriage), then what is to stop them from doing the same to other groups? Equal protection apparently isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. Let’s repeat that statement, replacing groups and rights: “If they (voters) can deny one group (non-whites) from exercising their rights (owning property), then what is to stop them from doing the same to other groups?” Do we see now how bad this is?