Well, here's an agenda for your review:

The most recent edition of The Weekly Standard contains an article by Sam Schulman entitled "The Worst Thing About Gay Marriage."

In it, he declares that, although same-sex couples are just as legitimately romantically involved as straight couples, romance is no reason to get married. He states that marriage is based on "The Kinship System.".

Now I had to go look that up, but it basically goes back to feudal times when wives were conferred with property. In fact, wives were property. This is his ideal marriage?

So he states that 4 aspects of the kinship system that comprise marriage are not available to same-sex couples.
  1. "[M]arriage is concerned above all with female sexuality. The very existence of kinship depends on the protection of females from rape, degradation, and concubinage."
    (Ah, but who is to protect them from the oppression of being married to a man who assumes he must protect her 24-7?)
  2. Kinship sets up rules that prevent "ritual pollution" of family lines. In other words, no one will object if an Irish guy marries an Italian guy, since they can't have kids.
    (You may draw your own prejudicial parallels.)
  3. Marriage legitimizes sexual relations, and "many of us feel that licit sexuality loses, moreover, a bit of its oomph. Gay lovers live merrily free of this system."
    (Do you sense a bit of jealousy on his part?)
  4. Marriage builds a bond between two families. "There can, of course, be warm relations between families and their children's same-sex partners, but these come about because of liking, sympathy, and the inherent kindness of many people. A wedding between same-sex lovers does not create the fact (or even the feeling) of kinship between a man and his husband's family; a woman and her wife's kin."
    (Then why are my parents still in contact with my partner's parents 9 years after he died, while my father's family and mother's family never speak to one another?)
These he describes as "duties." Protect women, maintain ethnic/class purity, pressure folks to get married to guarantee them bad sex (I swear that's what it sounded like), and build interfamilial bridges. And after lengthily describing these duties he slipped in the following:
"Few men would ever bother to enter into a romantic heterosexual marriage--much less three, as I have done--were it not for the iron grip of necessity that falls upon us when we are unwise enough to fall in love with a woman other than our mom. There would be very few flowerings of domestic ecstasy were it not for the granite underpinnings of marriage."
Cough ... Cough ... three marriages? And, oh, dear, men don't want to get married?

I do not condemn him for having married three times. In fact, I applaud his faith in the institution, no matter how often it has failed him or he has failed it. However, doesn't it SLIGHTLY bring into question his perspective that he is protecting women, holding the bulwark on purity, and building bonds between families? (He certainly seems to have found his way around the sexual monotony issue, although it is a pity he decided to involve America's legal system in the process.) And his assertion that men do not want to get married actually falls apart in the face of his own life. Men LIKE getting married ... some like doing it over, and over, and over again. In fact, most studies show that men's benefits from marriage far outweigh those gains for women.

I find it bewildering that The Weekly Standard, America's premier conservative publication, would print such an article that prizes a feudal mentality, demeans women, promotes ethnic purity, and legitimizes such obvious male superiority. However, when your highest hope is to stop the progress of gay marriage, it seems that even the Weekly Standard is willing to engage in a scorched-earth strategy. Luckily, their spokesperson is such a buffoon that I don't think anyone will take it very seriously.

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Comment by Becky Garcia on May 24, 2009 at 1:08pm
Scott M has figured it out!

Point #1 is laughable, but it is exactly the kind of marriage that they're supporting. To them, marriage is not about love but about controlling--or "protecting", as their euphemism goes--women. His argument that this protects them from rape is absurd. How can you be free to say "no" when the idea is that your sexuality is the property of your husband (and, before that, your father)?

And marrying for "protection" is "concubinage"!

Comment by John Shuey on May 24, 2009 at 12:43pm
"Second marriages are the triumph of hope over experience." - H.L. Mencken

Makes one wonder wtf third marriages are?
Comment by Scott M on May 24, 2009 at 11:40am
In your last paragraph you answer your own question. Social conservatives *want* to return to a sort of neo-feudal 1950s-esque view of society and culture that never truly existed outside of television fantasy. For those people, anything you wouldn't find on "Leave it to Beaver" is suspect and the most extreme example of that is two people of the same sex "corrupting" their precious fantasy world by trying to insinuate themselves into it.

This is the same crowd that opposed interracial marriages, civil rights for minorities, and even women's suffrage with very nearly the same language. The real story here is that they don't even realize the extent of their own bigotry, or worse yet have an inkling of it but see it as a *good* thing.



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