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Iowa…One Year Later

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by Brian Leubitz

While we are approaching 2 years from the date the California Supreme Court overturned Prop 22, the first marriage ban, Iowa is now getting to their first anniversary. And they haven’t had any plebiscites to strip their constitutional rights.

In Iowa, to get a Constitutional Amendment on the ballot, they have a much more considered rational process. Instead of just having anybody who can muster up a couple million dollars put something on the ballot, they actually give it to their elected representatives. And as of right now, the Iowa Legislature has not found any reason to put such a decisive issue on the ballot.  But that doesn’t mean the Right-Wingers are just rolling over, and dealing with equality. Far from it:

”There’s two lenses here. One’s a biblical world view and the other is basically more of a secular humanist world view, and that’s why there never seems to be agreement,” said the Rev. Pastor Brad Cranston, of Burlington’s Heritage Baptist Church. “They’re not going to be reconciled with one another.”

Seeing the world through the Bible, Cranston said he’s prepared to continue his agenda even though state lawmakers have so far refused to bring forward a constitutional amendment to define marriage as between one man and one woman.

“(T)his is going to be a fight for the long haul, that the opposition here in Iowa is relentless,” said Justin Uebelhor, a spokesman for Des Moines-based gay rights advocacy group One Iowa. “We’re going to have a presence here for the next few years, making sure that our stories get told.” (The Hawk Eye)

They certainly aren’t likely to give up soon, so One Iowa’s mission of electing legislators who oppose this divisive ballot measure is key. And then keeping up the pressure on them to ensure that they don’t waiver. It’s a lot of hard work.

In Iowa, they understand that in a representative democracy, you don’t simply vote on everything. And in a constitutional representative democracy, you don’t rush to amend that constitution. And when you are dealing with individual liberty, we should be even more concerned.

The right-wing group is now going by the name “Let Us Vote” or LUV…get it? Are you laughing yet? But the concept of a majority voting on a minority’s rights is totally antithetical to the federal and the constitutions of the state.  Eventually, that concept will break through the clutter and the right-wing noise.

We can only hope that the Iowa General Assembly continues their resistance to a vote on our rights. For more information about Iowa marriage equality issues, see One Iowa’s website.

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