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“Love is bigger than government” – Jesse Ventura Makes Sense

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Now that he is out of office, Jesse Ventura seems to feel free to make some sense again:

    “We have a representative-style government. Represent your people and vote and stand by what you believe in,” said Ventura, who as a professional wrestler was known for his flamboyant costumes. “Civil rights issues should not be put on the ballot.”

    Currently a fellow at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics, Ventura appeared at the Statehouse alongside State Auditor Joseph DeNucci, a former boxer.

    “We’re two tough guys here to show support for a basic human right,” DeNucci said.

    Clad in jeans and sneakers and wearing a full beard and a shaggy ring of hair, Ventura asked, “How is my marriage under attack if two gays or lesbians down the street want to make a lifelong commitment to themselves?”

    Ventura, a one-term governor elected on the Reform Party ticket, added: “Love is bigger than government. Think about that.” [AP]

I have thought about it Jesse, and I think you’re right.

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About Eric Olsen

  • mike

    JV was very strongly pro-gay rights when he was Gov. He belongs to that micro-group of conservative politicians who support gay marriage, along with William Weld of MA and….um….uh…well, I guess that’s it.

  • bhw

    “How is my marriage under attack if two gays or lesbians down the street want to make a lifelong commitment to themselves?”

    Or a commitment to each other, even?

  • RJ Elliott

    Fine. Have your commitment. No one is stopping you.

    But when you call it “marriage” it perks up the ears a bit.

    If we are to redefine marriage because a small minority demands it, we should redefine marriage totally to include polyamorous relationships, who are also a (smaller) minority.

    I mean, why not?

  • bhw


  • Eric Olsen

    I don’t get the slippery slope argument at all: why does leaving the gender of the TWO participants undefined open the way for more than two participants in a marriage. Who has suggested this would be a good idea?

    Regarding “small minority”: estimates the 5-10% of the population is gay. As minorites go, that is not particularly small. The African-American population is about 12% by comparison. What is the percentage of those seeking multipartner marriage? .001%?

  • Andy Bates

    Here is the slippery-slope argument in a nutshell: Historically, “marriage” has been defined as a commitment between a man and a woman. By changing the definition at all, you make it easier to justify future changes. So right now, people are saying, “Why not leave the gender of the two participants undefined? It’s still a commitment between two people, so what’s the problem?” And in the future, someone else will be making the argument, “Why not just make marriage a commitment between people? Why does it have to be two people? It’s still a commitment, and that’s the important part. So what’s the problem?”

    The problem is that words mean things. You can’t just go around redefining words based on the prevailing interests of the time. If two gay people want to make a lifelong commitment to each other, then fine. However, it is not a marriage. You can call it a marriage if you want, but that doesn’t change the definition of the word.

    And just to short-circuit the other argument that gets brought up all the time: No, “marriage” was never defined historically as “a commitment between a man and woman of the same race.” That was something that local laws established, or that prevailing beliefs of the time restricted, but it was never part of the actual definition of marriage.

  • Mark Saleski

    yea well, historically…an eligible voter was one who was male.

    we fixed that.

    maybe we shouldn’t have though….the next thing you know, DOGS will be voting. then HOUSEPLANTS!

  • bhw

    You can’t just go around redefining words based on the prevailing interests of the time.

    Actually, you can. Dictionaries are living documents that define words as they are used today, not as they were used 100 or 500 years ago. New words are added all the time, and “old” words are redefined as needed.

    A dictionary does nothing more than represent the meaning of words as they’re commonly used. It doesn’t determing a word’s meaning; it just reflects it back out to the people who gave it meaning.

  • bhw

    It doesn’t determing a word’s meaning;

    It doesn’t determine it, either.

  • bhw

    Omigod, what if polyamorous dogs — you know, the ones that live in packs — start voting?

  • Mark Saleski

    ooooh, that would be bad.

    …and would certainly strike a blow to the sanctitiy of marriage (and voting).

  • RJ Elliott

    The Netherlands allows gay marriage. Beastiality too. And sex between a 16 year old and your grandma is completely legal. Look it up.

  • Michael Croft

    #6 “Historically, “marriage” has been defined as a commitment between a man and a woman.”

    Bah. Historically, “marriage” has been an economic agreement between a man and a woman’s guardian, generally for the purpose of dynastic generational asset transfer and often with the anticipation of longer-term alliance.

    While marriage for love has long been a possibility, it was not necessarily common.

    The assumption that everyone who marries marries for love is a very recent one, but not so recent that it’s within living memory. It’s a failure of historical imagination to assume that something that done by your grandparents has been done the same way and for the same reasons for ‘thousands of years’ or that they must be therefore done in the same way ad infinitum.

    The definition of marriage has already changed, and now the change is being fully integrated into our society and our laws. Probably the last chance to really prevent it was when women were given the vote. I wish the White House luck on rolling back that change.

  • Natalie Davis

    Bad luck: That’s what I wish the gummint.