Gazette says fracking and gay marriage are the same


  • Boulder Daily Camera
  • Rep. Jared Polis
I'm fairly sure our local daily hasn't heard the news that a relentless über-con attitude is driving the next generation toward an intense hatred of conservatives, because it's keeping its guns blazing. 

The latest is a continuation of this all-hands-on-deck freak-out over the anti-fracking measures being pushed by Boulder Rep. Jared Polis. It's not surprising, considering the paper's ownership can attribute a large portion of its fortune to the energy industry — and hey, what's a billion dollars worth, if you can't use it to pay others to pimp your empire — but it can get pretty stupid, as today's gem illustrates. 

In a piece that calls Polis a hypocrite, the paper attempts to connect same-sex marriage and fracking. And while the two don't immediately seem related, the paper makes a good case that it wishes the two were related. "One cannot sincerely use the 14th Amendment to defend same-sex marriage while crusading against private property owners," reads the collective wisdom of the paper's editorial board. "Rep. Polis, choose your battle."

Let's take a look at the Fourteenth Amendment, specifically the due-process clause, which the daily cites as part of a legal strategy against bans on gay marriage that's "increasingly difficult to refute." Well, wouldn't it be nice if fracking were the same way ... but it's not.

Polis is pushing laws that would allow legal setbacks between private residences and drilling sites, as well as enable local regulation of environmental hazards due to drilling. These may make it harder to drill, or sometimes impossible, but courts, like the Supreme Court in New York, have found these efforts constitutional. 

In other words, nobody's being deprived of property, though there may be limitations to its use due to concerns over public health. But you can sure as hell argue gay couples are deprived of liberty by a blanket ban on marriage for personal moral reasons.

If the paper wants to make the argument that the Fourteenth Amendment protects against local actions like that, it better jump on the marijuana bandwagon yesterday, because business owners are confronted with more regulations than it's possible to read, and 400- to 1,000-foot setbacks exist all over Colorado. 

This all comes after another inspired piece we wrote about, which urges readers "to vote the right way" on potential fracking questions. Anyway, Polis (who is gay) commented below the Gazette's story:


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