And speaking of incredible asses . . .
This week the voters of the great state of North Carolina went to the polls and overwhelmingly endorsed hatred. Since they were approving a constitutional amendment to vilify the love two people of the same sex may have for each other at the same time as I was writing a post about a study that ranked penis size by state, I was tempted to remove North Carolina from that list for being a bunch of dickless wonders. But as difficult as I find it to believe, the fact is you can be both an incredible ass and a humongous prick at the same time.
Not that I’m necessarily a proponent of gay marriage. With the majority of marriages ending in divorce these days, it’s a failed institution and it is not something I feel is necessary in anyone’s life, gay or straight. Gay rights and equality is a different matter. But the issue these days isn’t gay rights. Or equality under the law. It’s same sex marriage. Which is a lose-lose proposition. Arguing against – or even approving a constitutional amendment against – same sex marriage is a waste of time.
That our country is even debating the subject tells you that it is only a matter of time before it becomes reality. A recent Reuters poll reported 62% of Americans believe same-sex couples should be allowed to marry legally or that such couples should be allowed to form civil unions but not marry. Only 27% are against any form of same sex unions. Of course that California, where same sex marriage is not yet legal, now has a law on the books legalizing gay divorce tells you just how successful, once legitimized, those marriages are expected to be. But the debate rages on anyway.
It is somewhat ironic that an institution that unites two people is one that divides our nation. Ironic, but not surprising. Because the aisle that really matters isn’t in a church, it’s the one that divides the senate and house chambers in Washington DC. The national debate isn’t about same sex marriage, it’s about liberals vs. conservatives. Which really means Democrats vs. Republicans. Though these days Democrats are starting to look more and more like Republicans. I’m not sure what Republicans are morphing into. Aliens perhaps.
Politicians have glommed onto the same sex marriage issue as a political hot potato and are using it to bolster the views of fanatics. On both sides of the aisle. The Republicans championed the move to prohibit same sex marriage in North Carolina, and President Obama, on behalf of the Democrats, threw his support behind legalizing same sex marriage a day later.
President Obama’s comments marked the first time a U.S. president had publicly expressed support for gay marriage, and his position was hailed by Democrats, gay rights groups, and others as a benchmark for civil rights in the United States. None of them must have realized it’s an election year. Not that the President hasn’t been supportive of gay issues, but I do believe his comments stemmed more from his need to gather support for his reelection.
While I may not be a fan of same sex marriage, I am against enacting any laws that single any group of people out for unequal treatment under the law. But that’s not about gays. That’s about human beings and Americans who supposedly have an inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness. No matter how miserable that happiness may make them. Since this issue seems to be destined to be one of the pivotal platforms during this presidential election I thought I should be less ambivalent about the marriage part and consider more fully what legalizing gay marriage really means.
It is now legal in 14 of the 50 states for same sex partners to enter into marriage or a domestic partnership, both of which provide the same rights as straight married people enjoy. Even with the possibility of divorce looming heavily in their future, I’ve no doubt that those who choose to be married do so out of love and not as a political gesture. And I think that scares the hell out of a lot of straights. If lesbians and faggots can love each other and make a commitment to each other in the same manner as straight people do, god only knows what despicable normal human activities they’ll get up to next.
That love, in traditional marriage vows, is expressed by promising to cherish and honor each other through sickness and through health, for richer or poorer, and for better or worse. The act of marriage solidifies an agreement of mutual support between two people who care for each other. Looked at in that light, marriage between two people of the same sex is even more important than it is for straight people. Because gays and lesbians need that support more than their straight compatriots do. Not so much when we are richer, because face it the pink dollar is a hell of a lot stronger than the greenback these days. And not so much during happy times either, because we tend to be brighter, more engaging, more intelligent, and just all around more satisfied than most straight people are. But during times of misfortune we need that support. And times of misfortune are more likely to happen to gays.
When a gay man or lesbian gets fired from his or her job in any one of the 29 states where it is legal to discriminate in the work place based on sexual orientation – and to fire someone for absolutely no other reason than that they are gay – having someone to share and support you during what for most people is one of the most devastating traumas they will face in life is a necessity. In that light, maybe I need to rethink my stance on the same sex marriage issue. Because it is certainly an issue more important to the welfare of this country’s gays and lesbians than something like being safe from loosing your job because of the person you love.
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