Dear Proponents of Prop 8: A Lesson on Standing

So, the Supreme Court said you can’t litigate just because you don’t like gay people? And after you spent millions of dollars trying to forever ban man on man kissing? Total bummer. But, never fear, the friendly staff here at Bitter Lawyer is here to give you some tips on how to get that pesky thing called standing.

First, for the non-lawyers out there, you need three things to have standing. You need:

  1. A concrete and particularized injury;
  2. Some connection between that injury and the conduct complained of; and
  3. That injury has to be fixable.

This legal research is brought to you by Wikipedia, my sole and only source for legal information.

From what I can tell from the opinion, it looks like you Prop 8 guys messed up the very first requirement—an injury. Now, I’m not saying that the sight of two people of the same sex pledging their commitment, love, and respect for each other doesn’t cause you harm. I’m saying you didn’t appropriately articulate that harm. So, for the next time around, I have a few suggestions.

Getting Standing

First, stop trying to pretend that you spent millions of dollars and hundreds of hours because you altruistically wanted to save families from sliding into porn-filled cesspools of man-on-man love. That’s never going to get you standing. Although the sentiment is nice, this isn’t about saving other people, it’s about saving yourself.

Instead, tell them the real reason you don’t like gay marriage—you think it’s gross. I mean, just thinking it’s gross isn’t going to be enough, so you are going to have to follow that up with tales of some sort of illness like unrelenting vomiting. Maybe the thought of two women living in a committed relationship together causes you constant explosive diarrhea. If hot sloppies aren’t a particularized injury, I don’t know what is.

You should also point out how letting all these gay people get married is making you more gay. Just as President Obama is making everyone more Muslim each day, allowing gay people to get married is making everyone more gay. For example, just minutes after the Supreme court released DOMA, I started thinking about having sex with another woman! As my neighborhood fills up with gay marital bliss, I could start acting out against my will (of course) on these thoughts! This could have a serious and ruinous effect on my heterosexual relationship with my boyfriend.* So, just track how much more gay you are getting and how that is harming your heterosexual relationships. To be sure (you don’t want to push too fast only to be told you aren’t quite ripe yet), wait until you are actually bumping uglies with someone of your same gender, so your claim for standing can be as strong as possible.

I think either of these options will clearly get you standing, but you might want to make sure you claim both in your next law suit just to be sure. Good luck litigating!


*My boyfriend is reporting that this in fact will not be a problem for him and he is willing to soldier on despite the unrelenting attacks on our relationship by the gay lobby.



  • Jay D Kaputski

    DOMA is unconstitutional; CA Proposition 8 is officially history. Chick-fil-A is poisonous. Kamala Harris is the best looking AG.

  • Ivan

    I realize that the altruism of wanting to save marriage may seem unconvincing to. After all, how could a redefinition of marriage, as well as its expansion to include more people, possibly affect traditional marriage, right? Interestingly, some gay rights activists would disagree.

    The Advocate: “Antiequality right-wingers have long insisted that allowing gays to marry will destroy the sanctity of ‘traditional marriage,’ and, of course, the logical, liberal party-line response has long been ‘No, it won’t.’ But what if—for once—the sanctimonious crazies are right? Could the gay male tradition of open relationships actually alter marriage as we know it? And would that be such a bad thing?”

    Victoria Brownworth wrote that our good old George W. Bush was right “when he states that allowing same-sex couples to marry will weaken the institution of marriage. . . . It most certainly will do so, and that will make marriage a far better concept than it previously has been.”

  • Larry

    This same sex stuff is OK for people that want it. But for the rest of us, just give us some hot chicks that want to bone. We’ll bone the bejeesus out of them and have a great time!

  • Allan

    Kennedy was right. The whole point of having a referendum process in California is so private citizens can create law against the will of the state government. By depriving those same citizens of the right to federal appellate forums, the Court did much to strip away those rights. I am hugely against Prop. 8, but this was a horrible ruling for states rights, all because the Court did not have the balls to hear this case on the merits and declare anti-marriage laws are unconstitutional nationwide.