The New York Times is not pleased with New York City Mayor Michael (“Mayor Mike”) Bloomberg. In a March 11 house editorial,
“Mayor Bloomberg’s Commitment Issue,” the newspaper in so many words demanded
that Bloomberg embrace same-sex marriage, and begin personally officiating
at same-sex weddings in the mayoral residence of Grace Mansion, forthwith.
“He doesn't officiate at weddings at Gracie Mansion, a previously time-honored
tradition for mayors of New York. And it seems that he has a problem committing
on the issue of gay marriage.
the month or so since performing same-sex marriages became a point of civil
disobedience for a handful of other American mayors, Mr. Bloomberg has tried
to deflect interest in his personal opinion of the debate. He said the city
simply enforced the law made in Albany, which does not allow such unions.
Go there to get the law changed, he told critics. Gay supporters were disappointed,
especially in view of the mayor's long history as a backer of civil rights
for gays and his early comments rejecting President Bush's idea of amending
the Constitution to bar marriage for people of the same sex...
be re-elected, Mr. Bloomberg will need to convince Democratic voters in this
overwhelmingly Democratic city that he still thinks like them, while keeping
the city's Republicans contented enough to forestall any serious competition
for the party nomination.
There are at least four things wrong with the Times’
implied position: 1. Same-sex marriage is against the law in the State of
New York; 2. Mike Bloomberg is a Republican; and 3. The Times is saying
that Bloomberg should break the law, simply because certain ‘other people
are doing it;’ and 4. Even in New York City, same-sex marriage has failed
to win majority support.
Apparently, the Times’
editors, who have published dozens of pro-same sex marriage articles since
last November, think that if the mayor of America’s most populous city were
to join the ranks of criminal public officials, most notoriously San Francisco
Mayor Gavin Newsom and New Paltz Mayor Jason West, it would create a tidal
wave effect that would wash away the law. Mayors of municipalities large
and small across the country, starting with Chicago Mayor Rich Daley, would
set course by the wave of anarchy, and all state attorneys general and judges
would be swept away by the undertow. And so, the newspaper is practically
daring Bloomberg to break the law, suggesting that if he doesn’t, he’s a
is the mentality of a 12-year-old. And gays and socialists alike typically
inveigh against such macho swagger. For the media and the rest of the Left,
politicians are no longer permitted to be “tough guys” in support of law
and order, but are obliged to be tough guys, in supporting lawlessness.
Mike Bloomberg is no Ronald Reagan. Until he ran for mayor in 2001, “Bloomy”
was a liberal Democrat. Today, he is a “RINO” – a “Republican in name only.”
New York, the Republican mayoral primary has come to function as an alternative
Democrat primary for fresh-faced Democrats from outside the clubhouse. The
founder and still owner of Bloomberg Business News wasn’t a politician, he was a self-made media magnate.
terms “Republican” and “New York” co-exist uneasily in the same sentence.
(That applies to both the city and the state; consider the case of Gov. George
Pataki, who was a conservative Republican, until he got elected governor
in 1994.) In “flyover country,” New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani (1994-2001)
would appear to be a Democrat. After all, he’s pro-illegal immigration (alright,
forget that issue), pro-abortion, anti-Second Amendment, and pro-“gay rights.”
In fact, as I once noted, Giuliani had been accused
of being a closet Democrat. And yet, there was a huge difference, in New
York, between Giuliani and the Democrat Party -- the difference between the
rule of law and the rule of crime, between leadership and Clintonian followership.
And in 1993, when despite a 5-1 edge in Democrat to Republican registered
voters, Giuliani beat Democrat Mayor David Dinkins, a black socialist, in
their second head-to-head race, it was the political equivalent of a miracle.
Indeed, led by Al Sharpton,
outraged black New Yorkers sought to undo the “miracle,” and make it impossible
for the man who had beaten the city’s first black mayor to govern.
yet, even in the case of Michael Bloomberg, the adjective “Republican” still
signifies something, even if that something cannot be expressed in terms
of a clear political principle. Had Bloomberg’s socialist Democrat opponent,
Mark Green, prevailed in the 2001 election, Green might well have broken
the law this year, and married men to men, and women to women. Were Bloomberg
to do so, however, he would surely lose the 2005 election, and might not
even win the Republican primary. In any event, if New Yorkers wish to elect
a socialist mayor, they will pull the Democrat lever.
Hence, the Times’
claim that it is dispensing sound re-election advice to Bloomberg, is as
disingenuous as … well, most everything published on its editorial page.
But then, the Times
is not interested in helping Bloomberg get re-elected; it is interested in
forcing same-sex marriage on the nation. Indeed, it is hard to believe that
the hard-left newspaper would ever endorse a Republican mayor, even a RINO,
as opposed to a Democrat party hack. The paper’s veiled call for Bloomberg
to break the law, was more in the matter of an ultimatum: Officiate at same-sex
weddings, or we’ll destroy you.
There is more than a hint of desperation in the Times’ language. This is a newspaper whose top people on the editorial side are, as Reed Irvine, the longtime scourge of the socialist media and founder of Accuracy in Media
revealed in 2000, overwhelmingly homosexuals who daily seek to force the
gay agenda on America. But they have not prevailed… yet.
(Speaking of the Times’ language, in a March 30 story,
“What Marriage Means to Gays: All That Law Allows Others,” “reporter” Thomas
Crampton used the phrase “legally contentious” as a euphemism for “illegal,”
as in “Homosexual couples eager to formalize their relationship do have options
short of a lawsuit or a legally contentious marriage ceremony.” For Crampton,
who speaks of gay “families,” New York is only “a relatively gay-friendly
city.” I suppose that at most, only San Francisco would count for him as
an unconditionally “gay-friendly city.”)
all started when one man, Ulster County (NY) DA Donald Williams, stood up
to New Paltz Mayor Jason West, and said, ‘Stop!’ Socialist New York State
Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has since forbidden the issuance of marriage
licenses to same-sex couples, but prior to DA Williams’ display of public
courage, AG Spitzer had refused to do his job.
AG Spitzer’s spokesman Darren Dopp disagrees with my interpretation, writing,
conduct in the same sex marriage matter has been widely praised. Criticism
has come from only two groups. One is gays and lesbians who would flout the
law, rather than work to change it. The second group is people such as yourself
who may not understand the specific role of an attorney general in New York.
Here's a brief summary and explanation:
asked for his personal opinion, Spitzer said he has no problem with same
sex marriage. He noted, however, that personal views are not relevant in
the matter — that he must act according to the law.
this regard, when asked for a legal opinion, Spitzer took less than a week
to prepare a thoroughly-researched analysis showing that same sex marriage
is clearly against the law in New York.
warned public officials against performing such same sex marriages, saying
that if they proceeded, they would open themselves to prosecution by local
DAs. (In New York, prosecution of local crimes is the responsibility of a
district attorney, not an attorney general.)
issuance of the legal analysis did not conclude Spitzer's involvement. Spitzer
is now preparing to defend New York Domestic Relations Law against a challenge
by gays and lesbians. We are confident that, unlike the situation in
other states, we will successfully defend this statute.
has indeed ‘done his job,’ and he will continue to do so. It is simply not
true that he ever failed to do his job or equivocated in any way…
that in early March, however, political operatives in both major parties
acknowledged the political calculations underlying Spitzer’s actions. Note
the following passage from a March 3 article by AP’s Marc Humbert.
a win-win for him because he effectively protects the law as the state's
lawyer and as the chief law enforcement official of the state, while protecting
his left flank,’ said veteran Democratic operative Hank Sheinkopf. ‘He doesn't
lose gays on this and he doesn't lose other people. He's come down right
in the middle.
Republicans were not letting Spitzer, who has won national attention for
his probes of Wall Street malfeasance, off the hook.
‘He's trying to have it both ways,’ scoffed Nelson Warfield, a Republican strategist.
obvious this guy has crafted a legal-eagle image for himself and feels compelled
to follow the letter of the law,’ Warfield added. ‘But he feels guilty about
it and he wants to say “I'm sorry,” when he enforces the law.’)
And on the same day as the Times
editorial, even the California Supreme Court had a moment of lucidity, in
enjoining against same-sex marriages, until it can render an opinion on the
Four days later, the New York Daily News delivered yet another blow to the Times. The Times’ assumption that most New Yorkers support same-sex marriage notwithstanding, a poll carried out by the News – whose reporters had lionized Rosie O’Donnell for illegally “marrying” her girlfriend in San Francisco – found that 47% of New Yorkers OPPOSED gay marriage, as opposed to only 40% who supported it. (The rest of the respondents had no response.)
Were I a charitable man, I would say that in assuming that most New Yorkers supported same-sex marriage, the Times’ editorial board was merely incompetent. But the Times simply has the same contempt for the facts that it does for the law and for the will of the people.
are we confronted with a campaign by the most influential newspaper in America,
a newspaper notorious for its specious, legalistic-sounding arguments undermining
the Constitution, to bring about legal anarchy across the fifty states.
The New York Times is hoping that it can bluff and threaten Mayor
Bloomberg into committing crimes, and thus create new “facts on the ground.”
Don’t let them snow you, Mayor Mike. For the important thing isn’t whether
you’re a “Republican,” but whether you’re a republican.
New York-based freelancer Nicholas Stix has written for Toogood Reports, Middle American News, the New York Post, Daily News, American Enterprise, Insight, Chronicles, Newsday and many other publications. His recent work is collected at The Critical Critic.
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