Bryan's got a really good post regarding the passage of Proposition 8 in California, which, appallingly, constitutionalizes allowing one group of American citizens fewer rights than the rest.
The Associated Press reports that the legal challenges have already begun, and I wish them Godspeed, because legislation like this strikes me as not only discriminatory and un-American, but ironically, I also think it's unchristian and fundamentally anti-conservative: it violates our constitutional separation of church and state, impedes American citizens from pursuing happiness as they see fit, and it denies people who love each other the right to make a commitment before God and the community.
Personally, I don't see what any government has to do with marriage, per se, as marriage is a religious sacrament, and in my mind, if a church will marry two people, the government has no business putting them asunder. The government should oversee nothing but the legal ramifications of the union, and that goes for any couple, gay or straight. It's amazing to me that conservatives would support greater government involvement in the private lives of American citizens, but the unholy marriage between fundamentalist Christianity and political conservatism (whatever that is,in view of recent history) isn't always logical, is it?
Here's what I say, though: those of us who oppose government-sanctioned moral judgments and support all Americans' right to dignity and equality have lost a battle in California, but not the war. Time is not on the side of discrimination, and in 6 or 8 years, when the baby boomer culture warriors are no longer the largest voting demographic in America, this kind of thing will not fly.
The other link I have for you is to an article by Andrew Sullivan in the Times online on the role "identity politics" played in the election. Sullivan interestingly points out the way the left mostly gave identity politics the slip this year while the right embraced it, to it's detriment. It's a good read, and I'm interested in what you think about it.
I'd only add that I think a big part of Obama's accomplishment this year is that he really did sideline race as a topic, but not by ignoring it; he managed to put the focus on his own individual human identity, rather than taking on the mantle of "black identity" -- he treated it as part of what made him what he is, but as one factor of many. He rightly gave the lie to any efforts to box him in. It's interesting to note, I think, that we consider the role of identity when we think about electing a woman or a black man, but does anyone think that John McCain's "identity" as a white man is germane to whether or not he can do the job?
Finally, this article is hilarious.