Steven Taylor and Andrew Sullivan are confused about President Bush’s latest pronouncements on gay marriage. Steven was confused first, but Sully has been posting on the topic much more vociferously. Steven is catching up, however, with three posts already today.
Washington Times has yet another news-editorial on the front of their website on this topic. (See here for the previous one.) What I especially love is the use of “quotes” in this piece:
For years, the issue of same-sex “marriage” in America has surfaced only occasionally, a topic of arcane conversation, and promptly slips away.
No longer. High court decisions in Canada and the United States and a pending lawsuit in Massachusetts will finally force “gay marriage” to the top of the nation’s legal and cultural agenda.
While I think “marriage” is a topic for “legislatures” and should be in the “public debate” rather than the “courts,” it seems silly to approach it as if it were some fantastic “creation.”
Query to readers of the print edition: Are these on the front page and/or news section of the paper, too? Or is this just a function of the way web pages are arranged?
Stephen Green takes Stanley Kurtz to task for his opposition to gay marriage on the grounds that it undermines the culture.
While I support gay marriage, largely for the reasons Stephen and his first commenter Seth lays out, I don’t have a major problem with Kurtz’ argument.
It’s one thing for society to say that homosexuals have a right to, well, be homosexual. It’s another for it to place its imprimatur on the relationship and say, “We endorse this and put it on par with heterosexual marriage.” Marriage, especially with the current easy divorce laws, is really nothing more than a social stamp on a union. It also conveys certain advantages in terms of taxation (although not always), property rights, and the like. But we grant those priviledges because we as a society have decided that we want to promote the institution. The main rational basis for which is the protection of children. Given that the vast majority–although a shrinking one–of society believes homosexual relations are repugnant, I don’t think they have to give it a ringing endorsement.
So, why do I support it? While I’m not enthusiastic about the idea, I think the argument for homosexual marriage is ultimately the same as for heterosexual marriage: monogamy is better than promiscuity. Not that monogamy isn’t possible without marriage or guaranteed by it. But it does seem more likely. While homosexuals, presumably, aren’t going to have a spate of out-of-wedlock pregnancies from their promiscuity, they are spreading disease. (Also true of promiscuous heterosexuals, although not at the same rate–and heterosexuals can get married under current law.)
So, on libertarian and practical grounds, I think government should get out of the way and legislate on a rational basis. But the conservative argument here isn’t just outdated nonsense, either.