Meet Your Representative

Oct 112004
Authors: JP Eichmiller

While it is easy to get distracted by all the bells and whistles

that surround a presidential campaign, the voting public owes it to

themselves to be informed about all their potential

representatives. For instance, did you know that by being a

resident of Colorado’s 4th congressional district here in Fort

Collins, you are currently represented by Marilyn Musgrave?

If there were ever a reason to burn your wardrobe, buy yourself

a dog, move south to Boulder and declare oneself a Buffalo, this

alone would be it. Having a corrupt, lying politician representing

us in Washington is something we have all become used to. One who

uses her power to try and advance baseless, whacked agendas, that

serve only to separate and discriminate, is a whole different bag

of potatoes.

Maybe it’s the water in our state, but between Musgrave’s

disdain for gays and Rep. Tom Tancredo’s apathy for immigrants of

color, Colorado has become a hotbed for hatred in Congress.

Remember the good old days when we could just tear into people from

California and Texas? Perhaps that was to broad of a spectrum for

Musgrave. Maybe she needed more of a social and political minority

to disenfranchise. Whatever the reason, in this day of world

calamity and genocides, our representative has made a personal

crusade of attacking the rights of our brothers and sisters in the

gay community (as well as any other homosexuals who may not fit the


Webster’s defines a bigot as “one obstinately and irrationally,

often intolerantly, devoted to his own church, party, belief or

opinion.” Before we start attaching any such labels, we should

perhaps examine Musgrave’s history.

Musgrave, an Aquarius, was born in Greeley and went on to

graduate from our very own CSU, where ironically she received a

degree in social studies. Here she met her heterosexual life

partner with whom she would go on to procreate and produce four

fine children. Somewhere along the line she got an itch for

politics and decided to run for the local school board, where she

made it her defining issue to teach sex education only through

abstinence. The success of the campaign is unclear, but anyone who

has had to endure such head-in-the-sand rhetoric knows that

preaching abstinence to teenagers has been about as successful as

our nation’s war on drugs. From there it was on to the state House

and then Senate. Here would be where Musgrave would find her

calling, protecting our families from the constant threat of

homosexual unions. There is no written record as to what caused

this epiphany. Perhaps a gay man tried to lure her husband to a

wedding chapel in Las Vegas. Maybe her daughter considered joining

the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour. Whatever the reason,

Musgrave was a woman on a mission. In 1996 she would introduce her

first bill to ban gay marriage in Colorado, which would go on to be

vetoed by then Gov. Roy Romer. A second attempt would meet the same

fate, until finally a Republican governor with his own marital

problems (Bill Owens) would sign it into law in 2000.

Securing her own state was apparently not enough however, and

unfortunately for us all, she ran and won a seat for Congress in

2002. Keeping with the new Republican push for a unitary federal

government with diminished state control, her next goal would be a

constitutional amendment to legally diminish homosexuals to

second-class status who could not enjoy the rights of the majority.

Musgrave’s amendment proposal did not stop just at limiting

marriage however. Part of her bill would prohibit same-sex parents

from having visitation rights in an emergency room of their

children. She would deny gay couples judicial protection against

testifying against ones’ partner. All tax, legal, veteran and

inheritance benefits would be denied for those whom chose a partner

that Musgrave disapproved of.

Less than two weeks ago the “Marriage Protection Amendment” was

brought to a vote. Fortunately, much like Musgrave’s career, the

amendment was seen as a joke and fell 49 votes shy. Most did not

view it seriously and it was seen as an election year, polarizing

issue, much like the flag-burning amendment.

Think for a moment about the issues that may affect your life.

Is it rising tuition, a less than superb job market, or the high

cost of living in Colorado, to name a few? That our congresswoman

would chose to spend her time, at our expense, pursuing such a

non-pertinent issue, should say enough about her qualification to

hold office. That she fits the definition of a bigot is a private

issue that she can deal with in the confines of her own house and


JP Eichmiller is a junior studying technical journalism. His

column runs every Tuesday in the Collegian.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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