One of the reasons my wife was happy to leave Atlanta was because of all the surrounding rednecks and their less-than-enlightened social politics. Now that we live in Arlington, Va., I maintain that the surrounding areas here are as bad or worse (not just rural Virginia, but Northern Virginia as well). This Post article helps my position:
That's what Del. Robert G. Marshall (R-Prince William) says he fears. "The apocalypse for society is contained in this decision," Marshall said.But props to Gov. Warner, whose position is that the state shouldn't let such hot-button social issues get in the way of legislative work on schools, taxes, and other non-sexy legislative topics. At least he's got it right.
He called the ruling "cultural suicide" and said the justices involved wear the "black robes of death."
"The most fundamental unit of society is the family -- husband, wife, children -- and when you attempt to parody that and make some new structure or some alternate structure, you cannot contain it; you have to have gay recognition," Marshall said.
Nevertheless, Marshall pledged to fight that outcome by opposing any furthering of gay rights in Virginia.
The state also is home to such leading national conservatives as Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, who both condemned Thursday's ruling.
The Republican-controlled state legislature has fought annual efforts by gay groups to gain rights, while making curbs on abortion a legislative priority. Conservative legislators say they are confident that their social proposals are in the mainstream of public opinion in Virginia.
Anti-sodomy laws date to the early 17th century, when Capt. John Smith and the first settlers set foot on the Jamestown peninsula.
State Sen. Ken Cuccinelli (R-Fairfax) said he would fight any extension of gay rights. He added that "homosexuality is wrong." Cuccinelli said gay rights will be an immediate campaign issue.
All 140 seats in the General Assembly are on the ballot Nov. 4. Cuccinelli predicted that candidates will use the issue to let voters know where their values lie, much as they do with the issue of abortion.
"This will be a strong indicator on a variety of issues for some voters," he said.