Now, after my final read-through of the Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage [ "Obergefell v. Hodges"; PDF: 103 pages, 430KB], I can give you my final inventory of its lulz, culled from the pure piss 'n' vinegar of the dissents:
■ Use of the word «mummery».
Mmmmmmmmummery. Mmmmmmrmrmrmmrmrr. Rmrmrrmyrmy? Mrmrmmm. [pause] Aaaaaand WE'RE OFF...
■ Use of the phrase «o'erweening pride», with a gracious gracious apostrophe.
■ Quote: «Ask the nearest hippie.»
■ Quote: «California does not count.»
That's actually out of context, but it's a tease for further down. Until then, you must keep reading, while pondering the question "What possible context in these dissents could produce that sentence?".
■ Quote:«the Court invalidates the marriage laws of more than half the States and orders the transformation of a social institution that has formed the basis of human society for millennia, for the Kalahari Bushmen and the Han Chinese, the Carthaginians and the Aztecs. Just who do we think we are?»
...Well, apparently, people who haven't seen a comparative anthropology textbook that's recent enough to keep a bookstore from putting it in a solander box and shelving it in the antiquarian section.
So, uh... Bushmen, and Carthaginians? What, no Hindoos, Thuggees, Blackamoors, or Grecians?
(And, say, what *are* the newest findings from Lemuria? We must skim the epigraphs of our finest Pith-helmeted gentlemen scholars.)
And have a look:
Yes, they've considered every world culture! From A... to... C. But then we can stop there, that's quite enough.
I can picture someone fumbling with the index in the back of a leatherbound volume, "Hiſtory o∫ Man"... "Hmmmnnn,... China... what, 'Han'? Not spelt 'Hun' anymore? Well, bother! Modern times grumble grumble grumble. Now... Wait, this book completely lacks a chapter about the Antediluvians! I need verifactions for my truths about all cultures!"
■ Quote:«If you are among the many Americans— of whatever sexual orientation— who favor expanding same-sex marriage, by all means celebrate today’s decision. Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.»
And that is how to sound like a prick who is trying to sound like Cicero, but still just sounds like a prick.
You don't have to rev up a super-sensitive chromatograph to detect the acrid whiff of indignation, desperation, flopsweat, and untreated vascular dementia. Rob Ford Overdrive.
■ Quote: «I would hide my head in a bag.»
A picture of Scalia with the caption "I would hide my head in a bag" is an image macro whose existence would so clearly be in the public interest that its creation cannot be delayed a moment longer! So, you, my minions, go make it for me-- for *the world*.
■ Scalia tipped his hand and revealed his whole plan for living:«It is one thing for separate concurring or dissenting opinions to contain extravagances, even silly extravagances, of thought and expression; it is something else for the official opinion of the Court to do so.»
In other words: Is it better to win and have to be concise and level-headed? No, it is better to lose, to earn the chance to thrash and to yowl.
■ A final quote... and this is a wowser...«the Federal Judiciary is hardly a cross-section of America. Take, for example, this Court, which consists of only nine men and women, all of them successful lawyers who studied at Harvard or Yale Law School. Four of the nine are natives of New York City. Eight of them grew up in east- and west-coast States. Only one hails from the vast expanse in-between. Not a single Southwesterner or even, to tell the truth, a genuine Westerner (California does not count). Not a single evangelical Christian (a group that comprises about one quarter of Americans), or even a Protestant of any denomination. The strikingly unrepresentative character of the body voting on today’s social upheaval would be irrelevant if they were functioning as judges, answering the legal question whether the American people had ever ratified a constitutional provision that was understood to proscribe the traditional definition of marriage.»
In other words, the dissenting judges, four old Catholic American Republican men, are bitching that there's not enough ~diverse~ people around who would show up... and agree with them. It has been quite a bother, because the current diverse people (count off: two Jewesses!, a Jew!, an Irishman!, and that Spanish woman from the Boroughs!) dared to vote against them, and thus are *clearly* not working out as planned.
It is enough to make one's monocle drop into one's snifter.
SNIFTER, I SAY.
After I wrote the above, I was asked: "One hopes they had enough fainting couches in the judicial chambers, doesn't one?"
I replied: "The fainting couches were once numerous and ample-- but they are no more! It is said by some that the IRISHMAN has replaced them with OTTOMANS! (#CultureWars)"
Some months later, I noted that the five-month anniversary of the ruling is on Thanksgiving day (Nov 26th), and the six-month anniversary is the day after Christmas.Tags: argumentation, dongs, geezers, history, infantilism, invective, law, nixons, policy, politics, usa, writing
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