The End of Democracy?

dpinello at dpinello at
Sat Oct 29 10:59:18 PDT 2005

I agree with Mark Tushnet that the U.S. Supreme Court is unlikely to 
address gay marriage head on for a long time.  Moreover, I realize 
that Rick Duncan's assertion that the Court's doing so might signal 
the "end of democracy" for social conservatives was made in the 
context of court action.

But how do hardline social conservatives explain away the facts that, 
this year alone, the California Legislature passed a gay marriage 
bill, the Massachusetts Legislature rejected a constitutional 
amendment to reverse Goodridge, and the Connecticut Legislature 
created full civil unions for lesbian and gay couples?

Are legislatures not democratic institutions?  And don't these recent 
legislative actions (not to mention the probability of future state-
house authorizations of same-sex unions by the time the Court acts) 
seriously undermine the "end of democracy" argument?

Dan Pinello

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