In response to Bond’s statement that “Black people, of all people, should not oppose equality,” Harris writes, “[W]hen he says ‘equality,’ he isn’t talking about the right to vote, the right to eat at a public restaurant, the right to attend an integrated school or the right to a fair trial. He is talking about the right to change the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples.”
Harris’s implication is that gays should not be allowed to marry because they didn’t face the same discrimination as blacks. First, many gay people are black. Second, I thought the message of the civil rights movement was that Jefferson's phrase “all men are created equal” means that equal rights are the birthright of everyone. Harris, by contrast, seems to be saying that only people whose ancestors were victims of particularly brutal discrimination are entitled to civil rights. This notion that civil rights belong exclusively to African Americans makes a hash of what the leaders of the civil rights movement said they were fighting for.
Harris's comment about redefining marriage reminds me of Judge Leon Bazile’s famous statement in the Loving case, “Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.” How is Harris’s disapproval of same-sex marriages any more enlightened than the views of Judge Bazile?