Wednesday, November 04, 2009

As Maine Goes . . .

So goes the Nation is an old rubric that has a certain element of truth. I suppose that is because Maine is the first spot in America to see the sunrise of the new day (never mind that the westernmost islands of the Aleutian chain are technically across the 180 meridian). Another example is when the voters of Maine rejected same sex marriage at the ballot box yesterday. This means that everywhere the vote has been put to the public, the public has rejected it. The only places where same sex marriage is allowed were put into effect by either judicial, or legislative fiat.
I don't really understand the desire for gay marriage, mostly because it leads to gay divorce. The other thing is, that the institution of marriage (and we should all be institutionalized) holds a meaning beyond the normal understanding of the word. But to say that it provides for a stable relationship between a husband and wife for the rearing of children, would mean that I shouldn't be married, since I had that whole fertility problem solved before I married my wife. And what about the fertile octogenarian, which is a legal fiction to screw with law student's minds for no purpose other than the amusement of the law professors.
On the other side, the heavy handed approach that the proponents of gay marriage make, turns people off who might otherwise be agreeable to their cause. Sexual orientation is really nobody's business, and should not be flaunted for that very reason, whether straight or not. Throw in the lawsuits that seek to force churches to condone gay marriage, and people become very uncomfortable with the notion and its adherents.
If the gay community is going to accomplish their goals, they will need to change their tactics. This issue is never going to follow the pathway of the civil rights movement of the '60s. Then, the majority of the population supported equality, but the legislators, (especially Southern Democrats) rejected it. A sort of reverse of the present situation. But this is not to say that they don't have a certain segment of the general population who do support their cause. Mostly, it is made up of straight friends and family who realize the disparity of treatment given to their loved ones because of their sexual orientation. I myself, have a distant cousin who is living in San Francisco with his husband, and a step-grandson, who the women in my family all agree is probably gay. Me, I can't tell, so I don't bother. But I am worried about my step-grandson, because he is just a great kid. Kind, happy, intelligent, and just fun to be with. I wouldn't want him to suffer from what I saw happen to people who were "different" when I was growing up. He has done nothing to choose his orientation, it was thrust upon him.
No, the future of gay civil rights will have to come from us straights (or "breeders" in the vernacular) who love and care for our friends and relatives. Keep the flamboyance out of the picture, and there will be greater success. If on the other hand, it becomes an "in your face, you must accept me" thing, it will continue to fail at the hands of the voters.
The choice is clear: Feel good about moral vindication that accomplishes nothing, or agree to let others lead the way and get what you want.


Auntie Lib said...

Thanks for the thoughtful post, Steve. You have reinforced the argument I continually make to my son that the "in your face" approach by the LGBT community ends up being self-defeating. It's a horrible situation for these folks, but so often they become their own worst enemies in the political arena. I'm hoping that cooler heads prevail when the results of Referendum 71 in Washington state are finalized and that can be the pathway for a more positive results in the future.

Steve said...

Thanks Auntie.