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05/29/2014

None of this 'protect marriage' idealism excludes same-sex couples

by Jeremy Hooper

412958 251335688282245 889398456 O The North Dakota Family Alliance, likely spooked by the news that a court case might challenge their state's marriage ban and remove the distinction of being the only state in the union without equality or a judicial test, wrote the following in support of their exclusionary view of marriage:

Today, it seems many in society are focusing only on the temporary, their feelings, their wants, failing to take into account the longer term and their role in society. The couple putting all of their energies into planning for the perfect wedding day while failing to prepare for the rest of their life together may well find the wedding day was indeed the best day of their marriage. The wedding is only the beginning and the best lies in the years ahead.

The couple, carving their names inside a heart on a tree trunk, illustrates a romantic beginning. Soon the names of their children will be carved alongside. Even more illustrative is how the tree and the strength of the trunk represent this couple, the roots their guidance and nurturing, and their children the fruit of their love and care.

This couple represents the essence of the institution of marriage, serving as the foundation of the family and society. It, along with virtually billions of others, serves to provide a framework for the common good for those living and those yet to be born.

Should this not be the ideal? Should this not be the societal foundation upon which all rests, as it has for centuries past? Marriage is truly a blessed union of two, and is most certainly about more than you. It is about you in relationship to your spouse. It is about you as a created being serving a role for the generations to come.

FULL: Marriage: Irreplaceable [Focus on the Family]

What, in this idealistic text, speaks only to man-woman marriage? Answer: Nothing. Not a damn thing.

Or I should say that nothing in this text is limited to man-woman marriage, so long as you accept the idea that LGBT people and same-sex couples do, in fact, exist. We carve our names in trees. Many of us have children. And some of us would actually agree with much of what the North Dakota Family Alliance says here, particularly the part about couples who place far more emphasis on "the perfect day" than they do on a functional and thriving marriage. The only way you can say this stuff, and see it as applying only to heterosexuals, is if you operate with a heterosexist mindset that considers LGBT people and same-sex couples lesser, at best, and deservedly shunned, at the further end of the agenda.

And that is of course the problem. Our opposition movement does operate with this exclusionary mindset, and they are quite certain that our love exists in some sort of "other" realm that has no pertinence or application to that of man-woman coupling. If they'd just admit that, the root truth that begun their cause and that keeps their movement going, then at least our debates would be more honest.

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