November 17, 2008

Progressives”€™ California Dreamin”€™

In electing Barack Obama, many liberals thought we might be closer to an America where race wouldn’t matter. But for California progressives, the same election proved that race mattered more than ever. California’s gay marriage ban referendum, known as Proposition 8, passed 52-48%. While whites narrowly opposed the ban 51-49%, blacks overwhelmingly supported the measure 70-30%. The trouncing of gay marriage by blacks was a reminder that while they might vote Democrat as a matter of race, inheritance and perhaps economics, African-Americans consistently remain socially conservative. So does America’s largest minority: Hispanics voted for Prop. 8, 53-47%. Social liberalism has always been a white man’s gig, and the more progressive the politics, the more Caucasian the constituency. The racial make-up of the typical Green Party meeting looks like a hippy version of the standard GOP gathering. And an increasingly multi-ethnic America could be as suicidal for gay marriage as it might be for the Republican Party.

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