First off, can we please drop the canard that allowing certain people to marry each other somehow impinges on certain other people’s religious freedoms? No one will be forcing churches or religious leaders to perform same-sex ceremonies against their will, and people will undoubtedly maintain their right to worship as they choose completely free of government interference—as they always have. And for the Post to suggest that recognizing marriage equality necessarily conflicts with the beliefs of all religious groups is completely disingenuous, especially after nearly 200 religious leaders in the district stood with the multifaith group D.C. Clergy United for Marriage Equality.
But perhaps more to the point, it’s time for mainstream America to realize that endorsing politicians who claim to support “equality” for LGBT Americans but not marriage equality is tantamount to aiding and abetting homophobia; that they are mounting a direct attack on the love shared by fellow tax-paying, law-abiding citizens who want to make lifelong commitments to care for one another; that they are relegating people they work with, live with, and, yes, worship with, to second-class status.
There is no gray any longer, no hair-splitting, no rationalization or triangulation that suffices anymore. If you don’t support same-sex marriage, you don’t support equality and that is quite simply homophobic.
Thank you! There seems to be a mindset among certain people, even among conserva-gays, that the mere fact that somebody doesn’t support marriage equality doesn’t mean they’re homophobic. Whenever I see that, my reaction is pretty simple: this is not 1969. Really, it isn’t. I joked a few months back that gay conservatives are valiantly fighting the battles of the 1970’s, but I was making a serious point. In the year 2010, to not support marriage equality is to not support gay people. Period.
Of course, there are different kinds of homophobia, and wingnuts are quick to assert that viciously anti-gay politicians and leaders hold “the same position as the president” on marriage equality, which is a talking point Obama really needs to stop handing them, since no one in their right mind actually thinks the President is against marriage equality in his heart of hearts. He’s just being a wuss. But, as Kerry says, he’s “aiding and abetting homophobia.”
When I talk to people younger than me (and I’m not that old), I’m always quite taken aback to find out that a young person doesn’t support equality. Usually, my reaction is one of “What planet do you live on, exactly?”, as the consensus among Americans under thirty is so strongly in support of equality.
It’s time for everyone else to get with the program. You either support all of our equal rights, or you’re standing on the side of hatred and discrimination. As Kerry said, there’s no longer a gray area here.
Read the whole column, because she says a lot more than I quoted.
[h/t Joe Sudbay]