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02/13/2012

NOM, Kristof, and the core worldview that stops our supporters from ever being theirs

by Jeremy Hooper

A few days ago, the National Organization For Marriage posted this little blip and link, as if it helps their stated, anti-gay-marriage cause:

Screen Shot 2012-02-13 At 8.26.39 Am
[SOURCE: NOM Blog]

But the one truth that invalidates any point NOM might have been trying to make is that Nick Kristof supports marriage equality. In fact, he's supported it for years, even before many in New York Times media circles were forthright on the subject. He's fully with us on this one, not NOM.

What NOM doesn't understand (or doesn't care to admit) is that people on our side of this issue don't typically see "traditional marriage" as being at odds with marriage equality for same-sex couples. In the second paragraph above, the young men could presumably marry other young men they cared about and experience the same kinds of benefits. This is surely hard for NOM to understand (or again, admit) because their very existence relies on the idea that Karen and Sue and their two kids are in some sort of "culture war" with Kate and Steve's own brood. However, most of us who prefer actual culture over concocted skirmishes prefer to use the "solid marriage" or even "traditional marriage" labels judiciously, affixing that branding to families on the basis of demonstrated strength, not genitalia. And in fact, if you are someone who sees ours as a world that does naturally and non-controversially include LGBT people for the same reasons that it includes heterosexual, cisgender individuals, then it's bizarre, at best, and offensive, at worst, to even dignify the contrived "culture war" divisiveness that the NOM crowd so cherishes.

For NOM, a group solely focused on stopping same-sex marriage, to use an avowed marriage equality advocate to make some sort of point about "traditional marriage" would be sort of like me using George W. Bush to back my belief that the early 21st century was a great time for gay marriage ballot initiatives. When an example's fundamental view breaks so fully from the example-giver's own outlook, the obstacles towards cogency are typically too inherent to overcome.

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