You may have noticed that I haven't been blogging much lately, recently going over six weeks with nary a peep. Since it's November, I thought I'd try NaNoBloMo (or whatever it's called: I can never keep these things straight), and I thought I'd have plenty of material, since there was so much I failed to blog about, and some of it is still (reasonably) relevant. So today I was going to show you some nice Rhinebeck pictures, including my ill-gotten loot, but I find I'm not in the mood.
Last spring Maine became the fifth state to legalize same-sex marriage, but put actual implementation on hold until the results of a ballot question were in. I've spent quite a bit of time in Maine, and it is a fairly conservative state, especially the farther north and the more rural you get; but it's also a "you mind your business and I'll mind mine" kind of place, so I had high hopes. Yesterday voters repealed the measure.
I'm sad, and I don't understand. What possible benefit can come from depriving gay couples of a basic civil right? How is it your business that gay couples want to be able to be each other's emergency contact and insurance beneficiary, raise kids together, live together, sit at their spouse's hospital bedside? Your church doesn't recognize same-sex marriages? It doesn't have to perform or celebrate them. (In all states that have passed same-sex marriage so far churches can legally opt out.) You don't recognize same-sex marriages? You don't have to invite the happy couples to dinner, and I hope you'll forgive me if I don't invite you to dinner either.
One of my Facebook buddies brought this site
to my attention this morning. The idea is simple: since most states don't recognize same-sex marriage, let's not recognize marriage at all. Now, I don't think I can pull this off, especially living in Massachusetts, but try a thought experiment: consider of some of the married couples you see all the time, your friends, your coworkers, your parents, your kids. Replace the word husband
, significant other
, or longtime companion
. It diminishes them somehow, doesn't it? That's how it's always been for gay people. I can't believe I never thought of it in quite those terms before. What do you mean, boyfriend? He's my husband. Denying same-sex couples the right to marry doesn't make him more so; in fact I think it makes him less so.
The only comfort I can find is that time is on our side. As time goes on, as the sky over Massachusetts, Iowa, Connecticut, Vermont and New Hampshire stubbornly refuses to fall, as young people get older and the children of same-sex marriages continue to flourish, the tide will turn. It can't come soon enough for me.