Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Same-sex Marriage: Be Careful What You Wish For

I was having a conversation with a friend of mine last night and we got to talking about same-sex marriage. First and foremost I am a huge supporter of same-sex Marriage. But what does this mean? Does it mean I support same-sex marriage because it stands for equality? Yes. Does it mean I support same-sex marriage because two consenting adults have the right to do what they want? Yes. Does it mean I support same-sex marriage because it validates the next progression of love and understanding? Yes. Does it mean I support same-sex marriage because it injects moralistic norms within the gay community. NO!

I only support same-sex marriage as an additional option for the lifestyles of gay men and women. There is a fear I have pertaining to my support for same-sex marriage that, if and when we ever get it passed on a national level same-sex marriage may create an "us vs. them" complex amongst members of the gay community. That is to say that those who get married or find relationships are "right" and those who choose to stay single, exercise sexual freedom and/or have multiple sexual partners are "wrong." Same-Sex marriage should only be used as an additional aspect in our freedom to choose and should not be mistaken for the future shaping of gay life. The worst thing that could possibly happen would be for same-sex marriage to pass, people pair off, and those who remain single or even choose to not get married suddenly get served with a backlash of judgment and criticism for not doing what the new cultural moralistic norm demands of them. The statement should be: If you choose to get married, fine. If you choose to not get married, fine. There is no right and wrong regarding gay marriage; it is only an additional option to the lifestyles we already lead. Let's fight for same-sex marriage because it stands alongside equality and our freedom to choose, not because it's the new standard for who we should be and how we should act.

4 comments:

CraigF said...

I would agree with every one of those points. Seems like a reasoned argument. Balanced, unbiased and unmolested by fake sentiment.

A refreshing change in the pros and cons of this particular argument.

Tim said...

Gay people would probably faced with the same questions that straight single people face.

David said...

When marriage equality becomes a reality of course people (gay, straight, married, single) are going to continue to judge those who choose not to live within societal "norms." Anyone who chooses to live in a non-traditional relationship will always have to face that kind of pressure and judgement. But, as gay people have already proven, that's not going to stop them from choosing the course and pattern of their lives.

Trevor Hoppe said...

The issue for me has always been, what happens to the imagination of gay men when marriage becomes a tangible option? Will we still be at the cutting edge of imagining new and alternative ways of structuring relationships? The cynic in me tells me that, no, most of us will fall prey to the lure of the billion dollar marriage industry.

We will, essentially, buy into heteronormativity. It's a shame.