Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Studds, the AP, and really weird reporting

The headline reads:

"Studds's spouse 1st denied U.S. death benefits because he's gay"

Duh. Okay, reporters don't generally write headlines...I assume this is true on the web as well as in print media. But the story is amazing in its headlong rush to appear, well, stupid.

The lead:

BOSTON For the first time, the federal government is denying death benefits to the spouse of a congressman because he is gay.

Double-duh! The federal government is denying "spousal benefits" to the late Gerry Studds' male friend, Dean Hera, because he is not nor ever was the "spouse" of Mr. Studds.

Studds married Dean Hara in 2004 after gay marriage was legalized in Massachusetts.

No he did not. He went through a sham ceremony that was never recognized by the legislative bodies of the state of Massachusetts.

The 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act blocks the federal government from recognizing the marriage between Studds and 48-year-old Hara.

Common sense, one would think, would block anybody from recognizing a marriage between too people of the same sex.

Now I'm wondering: is the proposed constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman even necessary?

Source: Associated Press