Author Archive: nathanrudy

DOMA Struck Down by Supremes, Prop 8 Appeal Nulified

If you are legally married by a state, regardless of the couple’s gender, the federal government has no right to treat you differently than other legally married people.  That is, as of a half hour ago, the law of the land in the United States of America.  

SCOTUSBlog is also reporting that Prop 8 in California is invalid and overturned the Ninth Circuit which had heard an appeal.  The reason is that the people appealing the earlier decision that Prop 8 was unconstitutional had no standing.  The only entity that had standing, according to the majority of SCOTUS, was the state of California and it declined to appeal.  

So, same-sex couples in California can now get legally married and file their federal taxes jointly and get Social Security benefits.

Would be nice if the same were true in NJ.

Brian Stack Thinks “Democratic Principles” Mean “Doing Whatever I Want

Loretta Weinberg attacked Democratic party and elected officials who have endorsed Chris Christie yesterday, saying that they should be excluded from “party political sessions.”

Double dipping Union City Mayor and State Senator Briian Stack fired back today with a self-serving statement showing a massive ignorance about what it means to belong to an organization.

“If Senator Weinberg feels that a cross-party endorsement violates Democratic principles, perhaps she has lost sight of the core Democratic values to which I adhere on a daily basis, which include championing the people and fighting for those who may not have a voice.  These same core principles were exemplified by those who have laid the foundation of the Democratic Party.”

Beyond the fact that this misses the countless issues — climate change, infrastructure investment, women’s health, transportation, marriage equality etc. — that Christie works for that violate our party’s platform and position, Stack misses the point that accepting the benefits of being a part of an organization means not working against the organization.

If Stack and the other Christie endorsers want to be free to endorse across party lines and go against major platform issues regularly then he should be an independent.  But by accepting ballot position as a Democrat, using the Democratic brand in order to better get elected, taking advantage of the money raised and volunteers recruited by the party, of the authority and accepting committee positions from the party in the State Senate then you also accept that there are limitations to your freedom to piss on the party.

So, yes, Stack, you can endorse Christie.  But you’ve benefited mightily from the Democratic Party’s political decisions and breaking from them has consequences and you have to accept them.  

And going against the political will of your party should mean you don’t get to participate in the political decision-making of the party.

This is the Lobbyist for AshBritt

There are allegations that Chris Christie’s choice of AshBritt to win a no-bid contract to clean up after Hurricane Sandy was politically motivated.

There’s no smoking gun, but there’s lots of smoke.  For instance, here’s a quote from the owner of AshBritt’s lobbying firm, former Governor of Mississippi Haley Barbour, who apparently recommended AshBritt to Christie in the first place.

“We’ve got a socialist in office right now — how’s that working for us?”

Oh, and the chairman of said lobbying firm threw a high-dollar fundraiser for Christie back in February.

Now, were there this kind of smoke around a Democrat with an Hispanic surname he’d be in front of a grand jury. But for the Teflon Governor?

A Couple Pics from Joe Gutenkauf’s Memorial

Maureen, Kendy and I planned to go to the memorial for Joe Gutenkauf yesterday, but a lack of immunization intervened.  Someone decided not to get their baby immunized, and the kid got the measles.  Will a full breakout the baby was brought to Somerset Medical Center to infect everyone there, then someone who got infected there went to Maureen’s office.

So they tested Maureen and she has no demonstrable immunity.  On Sunday morning we got a call from the Somerset County Public Health folks telling us we were quarantined in our home! We couldn’t go shopping, play softball, or say goodbye to a wonderful man and good friend.

All because someone didn’t bother to immunize their kid.  Get the shots, folks. It’s not just about you and your kids, but about everyone they might infect.

Anyway, after the memorial already started we got a call that Kendy and I could leave, so I took her to softball and headed off to the memorial. Maureen stayed home, and is still home in quarantine.

Here’s a couple pics for everyone of Dottie Gutenkauf and the Solidarity Singers.

Dottie telling about how she learned Joe was a “jailbird”

The Solidarity Singers

It’s a Small Thing, But …

When I got married a lot of people asked if my wife was going to take my name.  I always replied, “I’m sure as hell not changing mine, so why should she change hers?”

In truth, I would have been happy if she had taken my name and am happy that she didn’t.  

But if I wanted to I should have been allowed, and apparently in New Jersey the only way would be through a court order.  Because I have a Y chromosome.  

There are only nine states that currently allow a man to change his name after marriage in the same manner as a woman: California, New York, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Oregon, Iowa, Georgia and North Dakota. Other states require additional paperwork, months to process the request and a hefty filing fee.

This is not only wrong that a guy can’t change his name on marriage, but what about the assumption that a woman would.  I know it’s sexist, but how often do you get sexist stuff that’s wrong to both sides like this, but in completely different ways?

It’s not marriage equality, but it is about equality in marriage.

And, speaking of that, when we do get marriage equality maybe two women can swap names without any problem but two men getting married will be stuck with theirs?

The whole thing is just stupid, belittling to everyone.