A Republican lawmaker is floating the idea of making marriage illegal in the state of Oklahoma. Oklahoma State Representative, Mike Turner, is so terrified that gay people might be allowed to marry, that he is proposing a ban on all marriages in the state. Turner’s proposal is being drafted in response to U.S. District Judge Terrence Kern’s ruling that the state’s ban on same-sex marriages violates the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. Presumably, Turner believes that if all marriages are banned, everyone will be equally discriminated against, and the equal protection clause will thereby be rendered moot.
Turner’s proposal underscores the real motivation behind the movement to ban same-sex marriage. Clearly Turner is less interested in preserving the sanctity of “traditional marriage” than he is in punishing gay people. He would sooner deny every couple the right to marry than allow same-sex partners to wed one another.
Turner who represents House District 82 (Edmond) is ironically the vice chair of the Government Modernization Committee although he spends an inordinate share of his time trying to prevent progress towards marriage equality in Oklahoma. In addition to sponsoring a complete marriage ban, he has also proposed a second vote to amend the state’s constitution to ban same-sex marriage. A bill was passed amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage in 2004. However, that measure was the bill that was deemed unconstitutional by Judge Kern. Apparently, Turner believes that is you pass an unconstitutional law twice, it counts the second time it passes.
Once again, Turner demonstrates that while today’s Republican Party argues that they favor less government, their actions suggest they love government interference into people’s personal lives. Turner’s proposal would pass a government ban on marriage, because apparently in his eyes, government not the couple should decide who can get married.
Mr. Turner is so appalled by the idea of two people of the same gender entering a committed lifetime relationship, that he would sooner take away that privilege from everyone, than see a happily married gay couple. While his petty, mean-spirited, and intellectually indefensible proposal may appear downright wacky to most rational Americans, it has not yet caused even a murmur of dissent from anyone of importance in the Republican Party. That alone speaks volumes about what the GOP stands for in today’s political climate.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.