Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Like many young transactional lawyers, I have found myself back on a very soft legal job market. But frankly this minor challenge is the only thing bad in my life right now, so over all, I am in a good place.

For those concerned about this, take heart: I was prudent enough to save considerably, and I have enough to keep my loans current (my only real obligation) for six months, and perhaps the rest of the year if I find some employment. For places to live I have several options (including the BF), and by a stroke of luck I am employed through the term of my current lease. As far as new jobs go, firms are pretty much not hiring at all, so I am looking elsewhere. I have a few leads, including doing tax work-outs or taking over the small estate planning practice of a lawyer who has grown disillusioned and is going back to school for economics. So we'll see how they pan out. I could even go the non-profit route. I have applied to the Army and Air Force JAG, but I am leaning against going full active duty, largely because in just a a year I have become rather integrated here, and I don't want to chuck that. Reserves may still be an option for extra cash flow if I go out on my own.

In the full half of the glass:

I am still with the same boy, and continue to love him very much. We basically live together in two apartments. He's still a damn, dirty Democrat, but our relationship isn't contingent on our politics. Besides, I can put up with his support of Obama so long as my boyfriend continues to let me wear his designer ties!

I have become heavily involved in my local and county Republican parties as a result of my connections through the Log Cabin Republicans. I am my State House District Secretary for the county party and my State Senate District Chairman for the state party. My county party is an urban county party and has made a concerted effort to reach out to gay Republicans. In addition to soliciting the LCR for folks to take leadership positions (which is how I got two of them), the county party is a paid member of the local gay and lesbian chamber of commerce. Last night the county chairman said, "I may be a stauch social conservative [he is], but ours is a party of the Big Tent, and those wedge issues aren't going to unify or help us here." The local young republicans meet at a restaraunt in the gay district--not necessarliy as a means of outreach, but to show that we young, urban Republicans are more interested in liberty than what some people do in the bedroom. I'd like to say this is my influence, but it isn't, and perhaps that's an even more encouraging sign.

The connections I have been making in the party may well pay off. For instance, I have some inside information on who will be running for what in 2010, including early smart money bets. I have contacted one campaign before it announced to offer my support, and the reaction I got suggests that it could turn into a job once it gets started. I'm brushing up on non-profit taxation, campaign finance, and electioneering law just in case. (P.S. this candidate has a moderate record on gay issues for a Republican. For instance, he opposed the FMA).

I'm out to more people, though none of the important ones. Mostly college friends. One was surprised, the other was just waiting for me to admit it.

More good news

Yesterday, Vermont did the right and honorable thing and LEGISLATIVELY legalized same-sex marriage by overcoming (just barely, but by still enough to matter) the Governor's veto. This is exciting news. It eviscerates the opponent's misdirection argument against "activist judges." That means if Federalist types who opposed court imposed gay marriage still oppose Vermont's gay marriage, they reveal their real animus is with the policy not the process. Of course, for some that will be no problem. For others, the only opposition to gay marriage was if the court imposed the policy and they welcome the Vermont outcome. And then there are those who much preferred to make the Federalist argument without touching the merits of gay marriage. I don't have a link for that third type because I can't be quite sure who they are just yet (I will note that the bloggers on NRO Corner had a lot more to say about Iowa on Friday than Vermont yesterday, although some of the usual suspects did chime in on both). Nonetheless a little sunlight won't hurt here.

As far as I am concerned this is an even more important victory for marriage equality than Iowa was.

Friday, April 3, 2009


First the good news:

As most gay people in the U.S. are already aware, the Iowa Supreme Court unanimously declared Iowa's defense of marriage statute to be unconstitutional on equal protection grounds.

Further a Proposition 8 type backlash in Iowa is unlikely because Iowa has properly stringent procedural requirements to amend the state constitution. There are only two procedures, the first is that the amendment must pass both houses in two consecutive legislative sessions, and then be approved by a majority of voters in a general election. Unless the democratic Iowa legislature passes a Prop 8 type amendment in the current session, the earliest such an amendment would appear before voters would be 2012. The second is via constitutional convention. In 2010, the voters of Iowa can vote to have constitutional convention, and if they so vote, in the following session (beginning in 2011) the legislature determine when to have such a convention.

Either way, there is good amount of time for the citizens to realize that allowing gay marriage does not lead to rampant bestiality, polygamy, child abuse, and whatever else the gay marriage opponents pretend to worry about.

Now the bad news:
It is still likely to galvanize efforts in other states, perhaps making marriage equality across the nation more difficult to achieve. Outrage will be directed towards "activist courts," and states without marriage amendments are likely to see a push for such. States with marriage amendments that allow for the possibility of civil union may see a push to explicitly prohibit civil unions, perhaps even to the Virginia extreme.

This is a battle won, and an encouraging one at that, but the war continues.