Gay marriage, what’s the big deal? Gay people are just that, people. Duh.
I have followed the gay marriage “controversy” for some time now, mostly with a sense of amusement tinged with disgust. Amusement that so many people can get so worked up over something that really is none of their goddamn business, and disgust that some people actually hate over such an issue. For example Manny Pacquiao just recently quoted a passage from the Bible in an interview where it stipulates that gays should be murdered. Yeah, feel that Christian love.
As is so often the situation I have a number of observations, in no particular order. The first is the observation that this basically is an issue that at its core is about what consenting adults do in privacy. IE sex. I’m sorry, but anyone who even thinks about, let alone is concerned about, how complete strangers fuck … has issues. I mean really, really, how can anyone care about something like that? It’s like being concerned about how people shit or how they eat. If it really bugs someone, they need to get a life or get therapy. Moreover, we are talking about people making a commitment to live together as a loving team. People have a problem with this? What, exactly, is someone’s issue with a couple getting married based on what they see when they pull down the beloved’s pants?
So yeah, I think any pair of consenting adults should be allowed to get married, I can’t think of a single reason to base it on gender. However, many people do have objections to gay marriage. They fall into two categories: religious reasons and absurd reasons. The foremost among the absurd reasons is the idea that gay marriage will lead to such things as polygamy and people marrying their pets. This is is called a slippery slope argument, and in this case, since essentially no one is calling for polygamy or pet marriage, it’s absurd. Especially since the argument suggests that there is something “weird” about gay marriage. No, actually, there’s nothing absurd about gay marriage … it’s simply two people getting married.
There is often the argument through tradition. IE the idea that there is some sort of “traditional” marriage that must be preserved. Fail on two counts. For one thing the idea that some established cultural thing like marriage must be preserved because it is traditional could be used to justify slavery or torture or any number of vile practises. Secondly, the “tradition” of marriage has evolved constantly, as the image above shows. In living memory in the USA miscegenation was illegal and marital rape was legal. Just for starters.
Then there’s the idea that marriage is about raising kids. Again, double fail. For one thing, plenty of people get married who for one reason or another cannot have children, yet we let them get married. Secondly, this may be difficult for some people to grasp, being gay neither makes people sterile nor does it mean they don’t want to have children. Gay people can and do have children all the time. It’s not exactly rocket science: a donor, a turkey baster, and some distilled water do the trick. And don’t even bother with the objection that gay people are somehow unfit parents, the science is long in, gay people raise children with as much success as anyone else.
Then there’s the idea that gay marriage is some sort of “threat” to traditional marriage. Again, deja vu, double fail. For one thing, no one is proposing laws that forces churches to perform gay marriages. And frankly even if they did, such laws would be unconstitutional. Secondly, if your marriage is threatened by a couple down the road getting married … clearly it’s your marriage that has a problem. And as for the idea that gay marriage forces people to subsidize something they disagree with … excellent point. Is unfair for gay people to subsidize an institution they can’t benefit from, so they should be allowed to get married too.
Basically, the bottom line as almost every court case has affirmed, is that the only objections to gay marriage are religious in nature. Since this isn’t a theocracy, such arguments are irrelevant. If your church doesn’t approve of gays or gay marriage, great, don’t allow it in your church. If the sight of a gay coupe on the street holding hands bothers you, there is a simple solution: Avert your gaze.
(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. It’s all over Facebook so I suspect it is public domain. I have no idea who to credit for it. I used it ere for one reason, to illustrate the absurdity of claiming that contemporary marriage is some sort of sacred biblical tradition. No, no it isn’t, not even close. And the Bronze Age is over folks, people can stay there if they want, but the rest of us are moving on.)