When South Carolina’s same-sex marriage advocates get their heads handed to them on Election Day, they will know exactly who to thank: Massachusetts.

Since the 4-3 majority of the Massachusetts Supreme Judiciary Court “discovered” the right to same-sex marriage in their state’s constitution (a discovery that surely would have astonished its author, John Adams, who wrote the constitution in 1779) 13 states have overwhelmingly passed ballot initiatives defining marriage as “one man and one woman.” A total of 20 states have had it on the ballot since 1998. And the record for gay marriage? A solid 0-20.

It’s worse than the Chicken Curse.

Eight more states — Idaho, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin, Colorado, Arizona and, of course, the Palmetto State — will be voting on same-sex marriage bans this year. The electoral devastation has been so complete that gay activists are bragging that, this year, they are actually competitive in some states. They might even win one. But probably not.

Same-sex marriage advocates have already written off South Carolina (despite their terrific website at www.dumbamendment.com), and they’re blaming their usual suspects: evangelicals, right-wing extremists and, of course, Karl Rove.

They’re wrong. Don’t blame “Bible-thumpin’ morons.” Blame Massachusetts. Watching the mess created by court-ordered marriage laws would turn any rational supporter of democracy into a Rovian right-winger.

What the opponents of the gay marriage ban either don’t get or won’t admit is that their enemy isn’t theology or bigotry — it’s democracy. The Massachusetts courts have rejected the very premise of self-government, and liberals have no one but themselves to blame if we peons (a.k.a. “voters”) rise up and fight back.

The fundamental premise of self government is that South Carolina is our state and we ought to be able to screw it up however we like. If we want mini-bottles, we get mini-bottles. If we get tired of mini-bottles we (eventually) get rid of them. And if we don’t believe that Uncle Vernon, his brother Derwin, and their prize heifer Daisy Mae, should be bound in legally-recognized matrimony, that should be our decision, too.

Nobody’s saying Vernon, Derwin, and Daisy Mae can’t all love each other. And it is completely within their right to dance under the moon while being beaten with pine boughs by a Druid priestess and proclaim their marriage in the eyes of Gaia. But when people show up at the courthouse and ask for a public, legal recognition of their marriage contract, they are demanding something from the rest of us.

Who should decide what the speed limit is? Each individual driver? Who should decide what the state income tax rate is? Individual taxpayers? If the obvious, common-sense answer to these questions is “no,” why then would the answer to the question “Who decides what a marriage is” be “Why, anybody who wants to get married!”

What gay-marriage activists forget is that the clerk who hands out those marriage licenses works for “we, the people,” and if you, the individual get to make the marriage laws of South Carolina then that means everyone else doesn’t. It is a direct assault on democracy. And the result is, inevitably, a disaster.

You can see that disaster unfolding in Massachusetts, where the liberal courts have announced that they don’t need no stinkin’ laws. They know what the state’s marriage laws ought to be, whether the people are smart enough to pass ’em or not. Not surprisingly, gay couples from across America began flocking to the Bay State.

Then somebody noticed another law making it illegal to marry an out-of-state couple if that marriage is illegal in their home state. So now Massachusetts judges are ruling on the marriage laws of Minnesota and Montana.

The citizens of Minnesota and Montana are, as you can imagine, thrilled.

One local judge decided that, while Rhode Island doesn’t allow same-sex marriage, it doesn’t have a specific law against it — at least, in his opinion as a judge neither elected nor appointed in Rhode Island. So this Massachusetts judge married a Rhode Island couple — who came to him because they couldn’t get married back home in the first place — and now they are back in Providence demanding that the voters of Rhode Island accept a new definition of marriage because a judge in another state told them to.

Got that?

Here’s your choice. Either we make the laws, or we can put our fate in the hands of the Mad Mullahs of Massachusetts. The choice is yours, and — despite the best efforts of the American Left — you’ll be allowed to make it at the ballot box.

At least for now.

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