If you thought Prop 8 was outrageous, you may find this proposed ballot initiative to be totally insane.
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Earlier this month, Christian anti-gay activist Matt McLaughlin took advantage of California's extremely lenient policy on ballot initiatives by filing papers to have residents vote on his Sodomite Suppression Act. If you're wondering if that is what it sounds like, it is.
"Seeing that it is better that offenders should die rather than that all of us should be killed by God's just wrath against us for the folly of tolerating-wickedness in our midst," the measure reads, "the People of California wisely command, in the fear of God, that any person who willingly touches another person of the same gender for purposes of sexual gratification be put to death by bullets to the head or by any other convenient method."
Yes, you read that right.
Matt McLaughlin, who is also an attorney, would like the people of California to vote on whether or not they want a law to "put to death by bullets to the head" all gay people or "any person who willingly touches another person of the same gender for purposes of sexual gratification."
Apparently, it is not illegal to file papers wit the State of California calling for the genocide of a group or class of citizens.
Even though nearly 6000 people have signed a petition asking the State Bar to revoke McLaughlin's license to practice law, "the measure is likely to proceed to the signature-gathering stage."
At the moment, its fate rests with state Attorney General Kamala Harris, who is charged with writing a title and summary for the proposal. Legal experts say she has little choice but to let the process continue and that McLaughlin is unlikely to face professional repercussions.
It only takes the proper paperwork and $200 to file for a ballot initiative. Once the Attorney General processes it, the filer will need to obtain valid signatures – in this case 350,000 – to have the measure appear on the ballot. That's a pretty steep hurdle, but who knows, anything can happen.
McLaughlin, who has remained silent, in 2004 went the same route, but tried to get the Bible in curriculum studies in public schools, an effort that would probably have been unconstitutional and cost the state about $200 million.
Who knows, next year, if McLaughlin is successful, residents of the Golden State will be asked if they want to put their gay neighbors, co-workers, and family members to death.