On Marriage

Wednesday, November 26th, 2003 | Gay Stuff

A friend of mine just pointed me at this article entitled Holy Matrimony: What’s really undermining the sanctity of marriage? By Dahlia Lithwick on Slate. She has done an outstanding job of distilling down the issue in a clear and meaningful way. Many of the arguments I’ve heard a number of times but and still ring true. However this part of the article really hit the nail on the head for me:

Here’s why marriage will likely survive last week’s crushing decision out of Massachusetts: Because despite all the horrors of Section 4, above, human beings want and deserve a soul mate; someone to grow old with, someone who thinks our dopey entry in the New Yorker cartoon competition is hilarious, and someone to help carry the shopping bags. Gay couples have asked the state to explain why such privileges should be denied them and have yet to receive an answer that is credible.

What really gets me about these arguments is the tone they take. Those who support basic human rights for gays and lesbians (marriage, domestic partner benefits, or whatever) consistently do so with clear logical arguments which seem to be presented with calmness and dignity. I was pawing through the archives that our GLTB group at work kept on the process of lobbying for DP Benefits back in 1992. After reading the justification, the research that backed the presentation, as well as watching the video tape of the presentation I couldn’t imagine any opposition to its adoption because they made it clear that it was just the right thing to do – from every angle.

Those who oppose these basic rights seem to base their arguments on historical dogma that doesn’t hold up to scrutiny and they do it with a very thinly veiled contempt (and hate) for those who don’t share their beliefs. I’m the FIRST to admit I’m clearly biased on this issue, however I would be very interested to read an opposing position that was introspective, well thought out and divorced from prejudice. Even if I didn’t agree with the points making I could at least respect the case presented. As it stands these arguments come across as thinly veiled justification for bigotry using the same arguments that have been used throughout history against numerous other groups of people. There’s a good reason why the keep finding the way they do – because they have to. The arguments don’t hold up to scrutiny.

I won’t even START on this Constitutional ammendment thing – I need breakfast and don’t need to get riled up.

Anyway… Enough preaching…

1 Comment to On Marriage

November 26, 2003

Absolutely right on that front, Pete. Ever read the Letter Wars, as seen in USA today? Your comment on dogma brought this right to mind; it’s the story of Wes and Tom vs. some ultra-Christian family members. Glad to come from more liberal a stock 🙂