Most of the people who are opposed to marriage for gays are basing their opposition on religious grounds. This falls into a "if you don't like it, don't do it" area; imposing one's moral beliefs on others is bad enough, but using the government to further a religious agenda is beyond the pale. The government needs to dump the Defense of Marriage Act (DoMA), which is one of the more hysterically anti-gay pieces of legislation to come down the pike in the past 10 years or so.
There are those out there who say that marriage is a sacred vow between a man and a woman, and that forcing churches to perform same-sex marriages is wrong. I agree entirely. What I propose is a radical redefinition of marriageonly marriages performed by a religious leader shall be defined as a marriage. Any other type of joining, including heterosexual unions performed by a justice of the peace, shall be considered a civil union, with the same legal privileges. This should satisfy everyonegays can enjoy the rights and responsibilities afforded by the current marriage laws, and religious objectors keep the sanctity of marriage intact. The 14th amendment is no longer abused, and the church may see a small uptick in the number of people who decide to get hitched in a church to say they are "traditionally" married.
The more outspoken anti-gay types will scream that gays are trying to push their agenda on them. That is only because the law, as it stands, suits heterosexuals just fine, while denying equal protection to about 10% (give/take) of the population. As for the concept of "defining deviancy downward" (Moynihan's phrase has been moved far afield of its original intent), it is God's place to judge souls, not mankind's. Allow gay men and women to live their lives, and let God decide who receives their eternal reward, and who doesn't.
posted on March 29, 2002 08:05 PM
The "more outspoken anti-gay types" have always screamed about the so-called "gay agenda" that's allegedly being forced upon them; the adoption of your proposal would increase the volume of such screams only marginally. Of course, I think it's worth supporting, if only to add to their level of annoyance; here in the Theocratic Homeland of Oklahoma, where the Bible Belt is a tool of bondage, where a state representative actually claimed that feminism can cause breast cancer, anything that perturbs the Jesus Loves Me And Not You crowd tends to get thumbs-up from me.