Drawing a Blankenhorn

August 6th, 2010

A follow up to our earlier Prop 8 piece (or click here to read the full series), inspired by The Dressing Down of David Blankenhorn (Slog 8/06/10).

“Blankenhorn gave absolutely no explanation why manifestations of the deinstitutionalization of marriage would be exacerbated (and not, for example, ameliorated) by the presence of marriage for same-sex couples. His opinion lacks reliability, as there is simply too great an analytical gap between the data and the opinion Blankenhorn proffered. Blankenhorn was unwilling to answer many questions directly on cross-examination and was defensive in his answers. Moreover, much of his testimony contradicted his opinions. Blankenhorn testified on cross-examination that studies show children of adoptive parents do as well or better than children of biological parents. Blankenhorn agreed that children raised by same-sex couples would benefit if their parents were permitted to marry… Blankenhorn’s opinions are not supported by reliable evidence or methodology and Blankenhorn failed to consider evidence contrary to his view in presenting his testimony. The court therefore finds the opinions of Blankenhorn to be unreliable and entitled to essentially no weight.” – A small excerpt of Judge Walker’s opinion about Blankenhorn


Prop 8 supporters seem to have drawn a factual blank,

For which they have no one but themselves to thank.

Or maybe I should say they drew a Blankenhorn,

Since he’s the one with no facts in his testimony sworn.


Do you mind if I call you Blankie for short

While discussing the results of your day in court?

Thanks, I suspected that would be OK,

Since the name Blankenhorn is kind of gay.


Of course, I’m not suggesting that you yourself are on the LGBT team,

Though anti-gay fervor and closeted desires are often correlated, it would seem.

I’m just saying you don’t want to give the wrong impression,

Unless, of course, you have a confession…


Now getting back to your testimony

Which Judge walker dismissed as factually phony.

It was based on unfounded opinion and prejudice against people born gay,

Not a strong enough basis, people’s rights to take away.


Don’t get me wrong, Blankie, I’m not blaming you–

I think that was the best that your side could do.

It’s hard to win with a losing hand,

So believe me, Blankie, I understand.


Why is this important?

Let me give you a little hint.

It deals with one of many little quirks

In how our legal system works.


Lower courts are the arbiters of fact,

Which can not at higher levels of review be attacked.

(Well, they can, but it’s a tough standard to overcome,

Particularly when the lower court judge isn’t dumb.)


Now, when it comes time for appellate review,

Your side will have a hard time introducing facts that are new.

The weakness of your testimony made Judge Walker’s opinion much stronger.

So thanks to you, Blankie, we may not have anti-gay marriage laws much longer.


And Blankie, it also seems to me

That the future of marriage isn’t what you foresee.

***

Here’s Rachel’s 8/04/10 report on Judge Walker’s scathing refutation (or should I say refudiation) of Blankenhorn’s “testimony.”

 

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