Several years ago a Florida judge ruled that Micheal Schiavo could removed the feeding tube that was keeping his (ex?) wife Terri alive, over the objections of her family of origin.
President Bush and the Republican Congress moved to prevent this and managed to delay the removal by a couple days. Ultimately the tube was removed, government agents were posted to prevent Terri's family from feeding her, and she died.
The Republicans controlled all aspects of both the federal and Florida government, and were only successful in postponing the removal of a couple days. Nevertheless, this was seen as a massive overreach by the federal government, and was blamed for the Republicans' losses in the 2006 midterm elections. How dare they overrule the decision of the duly appointed judge?
In said midterm election, Amendment 2 passed in Missouri after a massive celebrity-filled advertising campaign funded mostly by a single family. This declared that there could not be any restrictions on embryo-denying research. I don't recall if there was a lawsuit challenging it, but I had no expectation that we could sue to undo a constitutional amendment that was approved via a public referendum.
Fast forward to 2010.
Arizona passes an immigration law approved by its populace. The Administration sues and succeeds in blocking it from being implemented.
California's Supreme Court establishes same sex marriage. The voters approve Proposition 8, restoring marriage to its previous definition. The federal court overturns it.
Now. I'm not a fan of Arizona's immigration bill. And I'm growing inclined to believe that given the trajectory of heterosexual marriage, that it may not be just to excluded homosexual couples. Dahlia Lithwick, whom I cited above thinking Bush's actions in the Schiavo case violated every constitutional principle, seems to think this is just great.
Still. If you are a somewhat conservative voter in Arizona or California or anywhere else, wouldn't you get the feeling that if the eggheads in Washington don't like something you did, no matter how duly you followed the correct process to do it, they will find a way to undo it.
This provides ample ammunition to anti-intellectual movements and appeals like the Tea Party and Sarah Palin. These elites think they're better than you and smarter than you. They think you're a bunch of bigots who have "no rational basis" for your policy preferences, and they can just decide to overrule it. I don't think that would be a good thing.
I hate to rain on the parade of same sex marriage advocates, but I see little to celebrate in the further division in our society. Might makes right. You don't need to persuade those who disagree with you; you just have to grab the reins of power, determine that your opponents have "no rational basis" for their policies, and impose your will.
Guess I should start working on my lawsuit to overturn Amendment 2. Who cares if Missouri voters approved it? I think it declares a class of persons to be outside the protection of the law. That's got to be unconstitutional, right? I've just got to find the right judge.