Well, it appears the end of the world began yesterday, as the US Supreme Court struck down state bans on gay marriage. Judge Roberts dissented and said “the fundamental right to marry does not include a right to make a state change its definition of marriage”. Judge Scalia said it was a threat to democracy. As the four conservative judges fought valiantly, the US slid down the slippery slope of further destruction. I fear for what is next. Will those crazy liberals now claim that the world is round, and not flat? Perish the thought.
Sigh…..in these crazy times, it is perhaps best to remember that the sun will still shine tomorrow, and life in many ways will go on just fine for most of us. “The times, they are a changing”, and change is sometimes far from easy. The US has struggled with this idea for awhile. However, the reality is that this is a good thing. A society that discriminates is not the society we should be. There were teeth gnashed when women were given the right to vote, when blacks were freed and later given civil rights, when we let the Irish/Chinese/Polish/Hispanic people into the country, etc, etc, etc. Yet through it all, this country and its people persevere. Not always perfect, not always smooth, not always right, but we manage. This will be no different.
Support for gay marriage increases significantly as you move from the old to the young. With more exposure to gays in school, work, and social settings, the young are more supportive and understanding. Even in society, it is gradually becoming less of an issue. We have a whole lot of other things that are a “threat to democracy”, Mr. Scalia. Such as Citizens United. Such as inequitable tax laws. Such as Medical Monopolies. Such as huge and endless wars and government spending. Blaming gay marriage would be like blaming the butterfly that lands on the house, which then collapses due to dry rot.
I liked one quote from Kennedy’s decision – “Far from seeking to devalue marriage, the couples seek it for themselves because of their respect – and need – for its privileges and responsibilities”.
In time, I think it will be clear that this was a civil rights issue, not a religious issue, not a states’ rights issue, not a democracy issue. If we want to “save” the institution of marriage, we should invite those in who will be dedicated to their partner, and set a good example for the family and community. Heterosexual marriages are not perfect – look at the divorce rate, the number of spousal abuse cases, the number of child abuse cases. Those in glass houses should not throw stones, I think. If all the money and effort against gay marriage was instead spent improving the lives of families and family members in heterosexual unions, we all would be better off.