I wasn’t pleased the day my fellow Michigan voters decided to add a bigoted and discriminatory amendment to our state constitution banning gay marriage and I wrote several times in the past about how the intent behind the law was not only to prevent gay marriages from happening in this state, but to strip people of their domestic partnership benefits. The referendum was written by Thomas Moore Law Center attorney Patrick Gillen and by Michigan AFA President Gary Glenn and it was sold the people of Michigan as being only about marriage and not about issues such as benefits for gay partners.
So then perhaps one of the two of them can explain why the TMLC has filed a lawsuit against MSU accusing the school of violating the marriage amendment by offering domestic partner benefits:
LANSING—A conservative group sued Wednesday to stop Michigan State University from offering health insurance to the partners of gay workers and said the school is violating a 2004 amendment to the state constitution.
The American Family Association of Michigan filed the lawsuit in Ingham County Circuit Court and hopes to get a ruling setting a precedent that would block domestic-partner benefits at other state universities.
The purpose of the suit is to ensure that courts rule on the constitutionality of domestic-partner benefits at public universities, said Patrick Gillen, an attorney for the Thomas More Law Center in Ann Arbor, which is representing the association.
By providing same-sex benefits, MSU is “recognizing same-sex marriage in substance, if not by label,” Gillen said.
Fellow Michigan resident Ed Brayton has an excellent writeup of the TMLC’s hypocrisy over at his blog:
The behavior of the TMLC and the CFPM in this situation is appalling. Over and over again during the campaign for Proposal 2 in 2004, they assured the public that the amendment would not have any effect on domestic partnership benefits. The Detroit News, in November 2005, quoted several people who voted for the amendment as saying that if they had known the law would outlaw such benefits they never would have voted for it.
What makes this even more enraging is the sheer hypocrisy of the anti-gay marriage groups. These people talk in lofty terms about morality, yet they blatantly lie to the public about what this proposal would do and then, the moment it’s passed, begin filing suits to do exactly what they assured us the law would not do. I would go so far as to say that Gillen, at least, should be under investigation by the bar association for this. He told the public one thing in advocating a law, then tries to use the law to do what he said it would not do. That’s a pretty clear breach of ethics in my view.
Why doesn’t it surprise me that the folks behind the push for the amendment would openly and blatantly lie to the public about their true intentions? So long as they get their way they’ll tell you whatever they think will get you to vote their way. Michigan voters enacted an amendment that institutionalizes bigotry and the elimination of freedoms for no good reason. It makes me ashamed of my home state.