Does Texas Values Also Support School Segregation and the Ban on Interracial Marriage?

Was it wrong for the federal courts to force an end to school segregation and the ban on interracial marriage in Texas? One might be excused for wondering whether the folks at Texas Values think so.

Texas Values, lobby arm of the right-wing, Plano-based group Liberty Institute, insists today that Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott “stands up against lesbian mayor.” The anti-gay group notes that Abbott, a Republican running for governor this year, has filed court briefs in two lawsuits regarding Houston Mayor Annise Parker’s move to extend insurance benefits to the same-sex spouses of city employees who were married in states where such unions are legal. Abbott’s briefs are in opposition to that policy.

The Texas Constitution and state law bar recognition of same-sex marriages, but such unions are legal in 17 states and the District of Columbia. As the Houston Chronicle reports, Parker and the city attorney support extending benefits to married spouses of city employees by pointing to last year’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling against the federal Defense of Marriage Act, other relevant case law, and the federal government’s recognition of same-sex marriages conducted where such unions are legal.

Jonathan Saenz, the lawyer/lobbyist who heads Texas Values in Austin, today praised Abbott for filing the briefs and insisted that federal courts should leave Texas to enforce its own laws in its own state courts:

“Texas has the right to enforce Texas law and the Texas Constitution in Texas state courts. We are thankful that Attorney General Abbott has sided with our position on this issue, and we believe that his office’s further involvement in this case will be a benefit to Texans and to the Texas Constitution.”

So, Jonathan, does that mean you and your organization think the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka ruling was wrong? After all, the Texas Constitution mandated racial segregation in the state’s schools. The Supreme Court essentially told Texas it could no longer enforce that constitutional provision or related laws.

And what about the Supreme Court’s 1967 ruling in Loving v. Virginia, Jonathan? Do you and Texas Values think it was wrong for the justices to strike down laws against interracial marriage in Virginia, Texas and other states? The justices ruled that states couldn’t enforce such laws because the measures violate the rights to due process and equal protection guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment.

Do you oppose those rulings as well as recognition of same-sex marriages, Jonathan? Or is your bigotry limited just to gay people?

5 thoughts on “Does Texas Values Also Support School Segregation and the Ban on Interracial Marriage?

  1. The bottom line is in these quotes from the U.S. Constitution and the Presidential Oath of Office:

    1) This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.

    2) No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.

    3) Presidential Oath of Office: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

    President Dwight D. Eisenhower sent the 101st Airborne Division with loaded guns to Arkansas to support desegregation of its schools.

    If I were President of the United States and some analogous situation existed in Texas, I would send the military in to do the same thing. President Andrew Jackson, from Tennessee, said it first” “Our federal union. It must be preserved!!!” Abraham Lincoln thought so too, and we fought the American Civil War to support the three above statements.

    No state has the legal right to countermand federal law with its own state or local laws. What any state’s population thinks about that (pro or con) is not worth a tee-tee in a tin can before the U.S. Constitution. If the bigots in the State of Texas want another American Civil War and enormous bloodshed by Texans on Texas soil, all they need to do is consult a U.S. History book and the year 1861. Real Americans know how to deal with this problem, and 1861-1865 is the proven way.

    1. Also probably worth including, the excerpt from Article III, section 2: “The judicial power shall extend to all cases, in law and equity, arising under this Constitution”.

      Which is to say: resolving whether a law breaches the privileges or immunities (or equal protection) is a question that is entirely within the reach of the judiciary; and the Supreme Court has the final appellate jurisdiction — at least, until the judicial process leaves off for the political process.

  2. “Small government” for god-fearing suburbanites, an intrusive and discriminatory government for everyone else…

  3. Texas is the greatist state in the union, and it is in the union, like it or not. The graphic weakness is the large collection of ignorant, misinformed, misguided people who get their “facts” from primitive religion based influences devoid of evidence only strongly promoting beliefs circa 3000yag. Unfortunately these elect their own kind to public office and the influence chain expands.

    Bertran Russell said it well: The trouble with this upside down world is that the ignorant are cockshure and the intellegent are full of doubt.

    1. Here in Tennessee, those of which you speak pronounce it (and probably sometimes spell it) “ignernt.”

      We live in a day and time when millions upon millions of intelligent and sensible people have become the victims of homespun back porch knowledge, rural hick religionists, and half-literate men who read and understand the Holy Bible poorly under their shade trees. The great theologians and teachers they trust attended the Clem Lemuel Family Bible College or some similarly named institution of lower learning. Far as I am concerned, if it does not come from the Duke University School of Divinity, Vanderbilt University School of Divinity, or a similarly prestigious institution inhabited by real theologians and Biblical scholars, you can use it as toilet paper. No, Baylor does not count and neither does Southwestern Seminary—not in my book.