News Chum and Observations: Post Election Edition

  • From the “Watch What You Say” Department: Back in 2000, George W. Bush said that he wanted to be a uniter, not a divider. After 8 years of his administration, I think we can now say that goal was achieved. He united a majority of the country… behind President-Elect Barack Obama.
  • From the “Remember the 14th” Department: Alas it looks like Proposition 8 is passing in California. It just looks like same-sex “marriage” will not be accepted by a majority of Californians, let alone Americans, easily. This is a shame, but not surprising. We’ve seen it in other civil rights areas before — it is where the Supreme Court must take its role of interpreting the law of the land, sometimes in uncomfortable ways, if that way is what is right. The 14th Amendment states, “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.” Providing different legal rights and benefits to one class (traditional marriage) that is not available to another class (homosexual marriage) clearly violates this law. If the government is going to give rights and privileges based on marital status (such as inheritance, visitation, tax benefits), then it must be equal for all classes. The ballot box is not the way to get this enforced. The courts are. People are uncomfortable with changes in their paradigm, but given time, it will happen. Just look at what happened yesterday. And the first lawsuit has been filed.
  • From the “I Love A Map” Department: Back when my parents still had their accounting practice, one of their juniors had this fascinating hobby of hand-coloring electoral maps county by county. I don’t know if he still does this, but such maps are now easily available. But there are other maps of interest, such as this map that allows you to see the electoral breakdown for any year. For those in California, this map gives a breakdown, county by county, of propositions and statewide offices.

In other news:

  • From the “And the Trifecta Completes” Department: The author death trifecta is complete. First was Tony Hillerman, and then Studs Terkel. Today completes the trifecta with the news of the death of Michael Crichton, author of The Andromeda Strain and Jurassic Park.
  • From the “Don’t Order Those Potatoes” Department: In the restaurant death trifecta, I’m sad to report the death of “Hamburger Hamlet” on National in West LA. LA Observed notes its passing, together with the outlet in Brentwood and the outlet in Westwood. You can still get your fix in Van Nuys and Pasadena. In other restaurant news, “La Fondue Bourguignonnein the Valley is closing, to be replaced with a Stone Fire Pizza. I believe this means there are no fondue restaurants left in Los Angeles.
  • From the “Comfort Food” Department: Mmmmm. Macaroni and Cheese.