Bashing the bashers

Oct 12, 2005 at 12:00 am

News Hits recalls that one of the issues that played prominently in the debate over Michigan’s constitutional ban on gay marriage, which was approved by the state’s voters last November, was whether the amendment would prohibit employers from offering job benefits to their workers’ same-sex partners.

Conservatives assured us that wasn’t the intent of Prop. 2. Liberals warned that such benefits could well be halted if the measure passed. After it did, Republican Attorney General Mike Cox issued an opinion in March stating that the amendment did indeed prevent the City of Kalamazoo from providing domestic partner benefits in future contracts. A lawsuit was filed by gay couples.

Late last month, an Ingham Circuit Court judge ruled that the purpose of the amendment was to bar gay marriages and civil unions. Public employers, the judge said, were allowed to offer same-sex benefits if they wanted.

Which brings us to state Sen. Alan Cropsey (R-DeWitt), who introduced a pair of resolutions urging the Michigan Supreme Court to block state and local governments, and public colleges, from granting such benefits until the court makes a final ruling on the issue. The fact that it isn’t even before the state’s high court seems to have been lost on the good senator and his fellow GOPers. In a 22-16 vote that, the AP reported, went mostly along party lines, the Senate approved two similar resolutions introduced by Cropsey — neither of which have the force of law.

In other words, Cropsey was grandstanding. Or simply just standing — on the necks of gays.

“This marks the latest incident of legislative gay-bashing led by Alan Cropsey,” Jeff Montgomery, head of the Triangle Foundation, said in a press release. “Cropsey, who is obsessed with all things gay, led this latest attack on gay and lesbian families simply for the sport of it, since the resolutions have no authority. The only effect of this mean-spirited action is to bruise and bully gay people.”

On the other end of the issue is state Sen. Gilda Jacobs (D-Huntington Woods), who had this to say: “The supporters of Proposal 2 went out of their way to convince voters that their ‘sanctity of marriage’ agenda was not to take away rights or benefits from people. But that’s exactly what they are trying to do now.”

Send comments to [email protected]