After what seemed like an eternity, Florida has finally embraced marriage equality, albeit by force. Federal Judge Robert Hinkle ruled, back in August, that it was unconstitutional for Florida to ban gay marriage. Despite his ruling, many hurdles were to come, all on account of one woman.
Florida's attorney general, Pam Bondi, put up as many road blocks as she could in futile attempts to derail marriage equality. After the federal judge's ruling and several defeats by county and circuit judges, Bondi took her fight to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals where her plans were shot down. The U.S. Supreme Court also denied her request to extend the gay marriage stay which had been put in place by Judge Hinkle. In a desperate last attempt, she asked for "clarification" on what the judge's August ruling meant, and how to interpret his order.
On January 1, Judge Hinkle clarified his ruling, one which was already clear to begin with, and stated that gay marriage would become legal in all of Florida's 67 counties.
Bondi had lost.
A modern day Anita Bryant, Pam Bondi had seemingly been obsessed with the issue of gay marriage. One would think that her two marriages and third engagement would've made her abandon her stance of protecting the "sanctity of marriage" -- but that would be too logical. Just because she can't be happily married doesn't mean that she has to punish the state's loving gay men and woman that do want to tie the knot. Preventing gays from being able to feel the joys of being treated equally under the law and experiencing marriage, at least once, isn't something to be proud of.
You see, Pam Bondi has dedicated a great portion of her political work and a nice chunk of tax payer's money to preventing the inevitable. Marriage equality is happening across the nation and despite her fierce opposition, justice and equality have finally prevailed in Florida. She won't admit defeat though. In a statement, Bondi said, "This office has sought to minimize confusion and uncertainty, and we are glad the Court has provided additional guidance. My office will not stand in the way as clerks of court determine how to proceed." Bless your heart, Pam. Bless your heart.
What really grinds my gears is how a women who is seemingly educated, has both a criminal justice and law degree and holds a prestigious and important position, has been incapable of logically and legally executing her duties as attorney general. History will probably remember her as someone who was bigoted, homophobic, unjust and narcissistic. So that brings me to my last question: Why did she do it?
I can only come to one conclusion: She wants to hold higher office.
As scary as that may sound, it's a real possibility. She found an issue that could give her notoriety and exposure. She found something that could keep her in the spotlight and solidify her Conservative base. She is a megalomanic and seems proud of all the malice she's tried to accomplish. After handedly winning reelection, her ego became prodigious, which in turn emboldened her to become the torchbearer of backwards ideology. Therefore, the only logical next step is the Florida governorship or the U.S. Senate.
To imagine that this might've all just been a ploy to shore up her base and solidify her popularity is disheartening, pathetic and repulsive. Of course, the road to power is paved with hypocrisy -- and justice is usually the first casualty. Pam Bondi could have decided to do what was right and be an example for goodness, yet she chose to forsake these values so that she could create her own political "happily ever after."
If I ever had the misfortune of being in the same room as her, I would look straight into her wide eyes and quote a line from the The Dark Knight Rises by saying, "There's a storm coming. You and your friends better batten down the hatches, because when it hits, you're all gonna wonder how you ever thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us."
That storm is the next election.