Objecting to same-sex marriage is pointless

People who are unhinged by disgust for homosexuality should understand that many of us are equally disgusted by reactionary religion, its political corollaries, and the wackadoodles who embrace either. Thus, the expression: “You go to your church, I’ll go to mine.” In going apocalyptically apoplectic over childish obsessions, conservatives make proponents of the same-sex marriage fantasy look reasonable by comparison and increase acceptability of a silly notion based upon (1) failure to define terms (e.g., marriage “equality” or redefinition, same-sex or gay), (2) false analogies (berdache or niizh manitoag = marriage, comparison of ssm with interethnic marriage), and (3) extravagant vituperation.

I submit that if same-sex marriage is conceived as for gays only, it is discriminatory and thus illegal. Also, it is not so much a matter of equality – everybody agrees with “equality” – as a redefinition such as is best left to the writing staff of Saturday Night Live. Further, the nature of various native berdache institutions, such as our local Anishnabeg called niizh manitoag, is quite different from anything conceived in European concepts of sexual identity. The identification with marriage is unsupported or subject to debate.

If I seek to coherently organize the elements of the fragmentary ssm argument, it comes to be something like, “I feel it is right, so if you are against it you are a hater and a bad person, so there.” Chastised by that stunning logic I, with other doubters, am supposed to resume my place and shut up. Usually, I require more substance before I even consider a subject worth expending air.

If there are legal privileges attached to marriage that illegitimately disadvantage people in same-sex alliances, then those discriminatory encumbrances can be addressed without redefining an ancient institution in ways that pointlessly wave red flags at the larger society.

Bob Greene