Letter To California: Hate Won't Solve 8

With even California's Republican governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, getting in on the anti-Prop 8 action, it seems that, between the growing protests and the liberal sadness over the passage of California's anti-gay marriage amendment there might eventually be something not to be that sad about. The reaction by many people — like Dan Savage and some racial-epithet-using protesters in L.A. this weekend — will never be one of those things. Signs aside, you can't fight H8 with hate.There has been a lot of talk on the blogosphere about how African-American voters are supposedly to blame for the passage of Proposition 8 in California. Yes, as Ta-Nehisi Coates acknowledges, 70% of African-American voters in California reportedly voted in favor of the amendment (according to a CNN exit poll). Given that African-Americans are one of the smallest minorities in the state of California and the margin of loss is something like 500,000, there's simply no way that African-Americans were the "cause" of the loss. Alex Blaze over at Billerico points out what should (otherwise) be blindingly obvious: ace is not the biggest factor in whether a Californian voted against same sex marriage. In fact, religious affiliation, current marital status and party identification were all bigger factors — and bigger pools of voters from which to draw yes votes. So how does dropping n-bombs and blaming every African-American in the state of California (including the 30 percent who voted against Prop 8) help? It doesn't, and it's blind, racist, disrespectful of people's religious values, hateful, ignorant, and a convenient way to scapegoat a much-abused minority group that did not push, fund, mislead voters about its implications or herald, as a community, the passage of Prop 8. That dubious distinction belongs to, among others, the Mormon Church and the Knights of Columbus, groups in which African-Americans have little high-level participation. So people can either read posts like Shanikka's on DailyKos, Alex Blaze's on Bilerico or Pam Spaulding's on HuffPo and recognize that this scapegoating is based in false assumptions and poor statistics, or they can keep shouting racial epithets at African-Americans in Los Angeles and others can allow it to happen without shouting down the bigots in the LGBT community. Because that will make everything better, obviously. No need to work together, to learn together and educate one another when you can just yell and scream and carry on...because that's how you obtain civil rights. Calif. Gov.: 'We Will Maybe Undo' Prop 8 [UPI] Black Homophobia [The SLOG] The N-Bomb Is Dropped On Black Passersby At Prop 8 Protests [Huffington Post] Prop. 8 And Thinking Before We Write [Ta-Nehesi Coates] Facts Belie the Scapegoating of Black People for Proposition 8 [DailyKos] Race, Sexuality, and Proposition 8 {The Bilerico Project]

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