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Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Recommended Reading

Posted by on Sat, Nov 3, 2012 at 6:28 PM

"Savage Love" in October of 2009:

Last weekend the boyfriend-in-America/husband-in-Canada and I attended the wedding of some dear straight friends. And we weren't the only 'mos: There were "a number of people in attendance [without] access to the rights" our straight friends were signing up for. And all us homos were delighted to be there and deliriously happy for our friends, and not one of us would've asked them to wait to marry until gay marriage is legal in all 50 states. [Here's] what I think straight couples should do in the meantime, HTRC: Get married, make a donation to the fight for marriage equality, and encourage your guests to do the same.... And in addition to throwing some money around, HTRC, I think you should consider lifting one of the readings from my friends' ceremony.

"Marriage is a vital social institution," the reading began. "The exclusive commitment of two individuals to each other nurtures love and mutual support. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family. Because it fulfills yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life's momentous acts of self-definition."

So touching, so true, and so universal—who could argue with those sentiments? Everyone at the wedding was nodding. And the reading continued...

"It is undoubtedly for these concrete reasons, as well as for its intimately personal significance, that civil marriage has long been termed a 'civil right.' Without the right to choose to marry, one is excluded from the full range of human experience."

After the reading—which was done by a gay friend of the couple—the officiant identified the source: It was from the 2003 Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision that legalized same-sex marriage in that state. It was a lovely gesture: The gay couples at the wedding were touched and the hetero couples were reminded of the injustice that gay couples face. It would be wonderful if this passage from the Massachusetts court's ruling on marriage equality caught on as a wedding reading, HTRC.

The New York Times today:

Adrienne Baker walked down the aisle on her wedding day in August wearing high heels, a strapless ruffled dress and a slender white wristband. Her groom, Austin Vitt, augmented his dark suit with the same accessory. So did many of their 140 guests. Moments later, when the ceremony began, the divinity student who was officiating offered the first reading. It was a selection that the soon-to-be Mr. and Ms. Vitt considered the secular equivalent of Scripture, excerpts from a ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Court in the case of Goodridge v. Department of Public Health.

“Without the right to choose to marry,” the officiant, Julie Maxwell, intoned, “one is excluded from the full range of human experience.” In other words, as the court concluded in the 2003 decision, same-sex marriage is a legal and civil right. As for the delicate wrist ribbons, they were Ms. Vitt’s adaptation of the white-knot logo for the marriage-equality movement.

 

Comments (74) RSS

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74
@7:

"And your smug
pious
self-righteous
assertion

...

The Moral Arc does not bend toward Perversion"

You don't get to use the first and then claim "moral" supremacy. Perversion is you, and you're going away.
Posted by goodbye, scum on November 6, 2012 at 7:45 AM · Report this
73
@71 I am most certainly a douche but I don't bear any particular animus toward gay people. I think the more circumscribed gender roles of the past did a better job of creating stable family environments for children than the gay-friendly sex-positive values we have today. I also think the rigid structure of the traditional family was extremely cruel to gay people, battered women, and to the temperamentally non-monogamous. There were reasons things had to change, but we shouldn't pretend nothing of value was lost in the process. I can't imagine a society that embraces marriage equality doing away with easy divorce. The notion that people ought to be able to change sex partners if they wish is to deeply rooted in the sexual revolution and the gay rights movement.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 9:02 PM · Report this
venomlash 72
@68: Yes, it's from a Supreme Court decision striking down tests of religion for state offices. However, what is or isn't a religion is not the purview of the Supreme Court.
Please explain how secularism can be religious. And while you're at it, explain how water can be dry.
@69: It does indeed work both ways. Government can encourage the masses to accept people different from them, or incite xenophobia and oppress minorities. Which are you trying to do, I wonder?
Also, the entirety of the evidence ACTUALLY DOES say that "homosexual pairings are Just As Good as Traditional Heterosexual Marriage". So it is, in fact, factually true. But what do you care about facts when you've got The Truth?
Posted by venomlash on November 5, 2012 at 6:33 PM · Report this
71
Ken, are you just here to be a douche or do you believe this shit? YES, it seems plausible that in general "accepting as normal many different types of relationships and childbearing strategies" will lead both to gay marriage and less pressure on people to have "traditional" marriages. But that's not really the point. Because we could also say that "allowing any change to male-female relationships" would do the same. You could use that fact to justify banning gay marriage and also to return to an era where men controlled their wives.

You pretend society only has one dimension: tradition vs tolerance. This is not useful thinking. Society can be tolerant to interracial and same sex marriage AND intolerant of BS marriages and lack of commitment and irresponsible parenting. A more intelligent, nonbiased approach would be to recognize that long term, stable relationships have value, and encourage such things: work to create social pressure to raise children in such relationships, ENCOURAGE GAYS AND LESBIANS TO MARRY, and then to MAKE GAY AND STRAIGHT MARRIAGES MEAN SOMETHING. End easy divorce; increase tax benefits; get rid of Britney Spears and Kardashian spectacles. If your agenda is about more long term relationships then do something serious about forwarding that agenda. If you're just here to speciously propose that gays getting fair treatment makes heteros become irresponsible, we all know you're just searching for a slightly more socially acceptable way to say you don't like gay people.
Posted by yonush18 on November 5, 2012 at 2:44 PM · Report this
70
@59

Thank you for the video, and that unpleasant but necessary reminder of why even Mitt Romney is better than Rick Santorum.

You could hear the disgust in Frothy's voice when he said that, without the possibility of reproduction, sex was "about nothing but pleasure!" He went on to say that "these are important public policy issues." He wants sex only within marriage, he wants the states to have the right to criminalize contraception, he wants gay sex recriminalized.

If Romey wins, I'll spend the next four years (maybe the next eight years) replaying the Santorum video you linked to, and telling myself, "Well, it could have been worse."
Posted by Clayton on November 5, 2012 at 2:19 PM · Report this
69
67

you assume a great deal.

asserting that homosexual pairings are Just As Good as Traditional Heterosexual Marriage is factually false and children should not be taught lies.

the success of the nazi movement, especially and including the brainwashing of german children through the Nazi Youth, made it difficult for Jews to impart their values to their children.

see how that works?
Posted by kissing Slog's ass won't make you happy on November 5, 2012 at 2:14 PM · Report this
68
66

the quotation is from a supreme court decision.

Posted by you should have known that. on November 5, 2012 at 2:06 PM · Report this
67
@66 Legal recognition of same-sex unions will change the character of the society in which the troll lives and, possibly, raises children. The success of the civil rights movement made it difficult for racists to impart their white supremacist beliefs to their children because those beliefs were in conflict with the values of the larger society. The success of the marriage equality movement will inevitably make it harder for homophobes to teach their children to be little school yard fag-bashers.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 1:51 PM · Report this
venomlash 66
@63: The opinion of a supreme court justice on matters of law would be relevant. If he says that secular humanism is a religion, or that dishwashers are miraculous, that really doesn't mean anything. Just because someone is an expert doesn't mean they know everything.
Any secular philosophy is by definition non-religious. Dan's religious beliefs are not being brought into play here.
Again: how are you being imposed on by gay people getting married? Again: how are you NOT imposing on gay people by preventing them from getting married? Again: what rights is Dan trying to deny to others?
Posted by venomlash on November 5, 2012 at 12:59 PM · Report this
65
Wow, this post really brought out the trolls/bigots.
What I find facinating is how the arguments against gay marriage so perfectly mirror those used against interracial marriage. It was believed that when white women (and the concern was almost always about 'protecting women') had the chance to marry other races then there would never be a same-race marriage again. Our children would become "confused" because if there wouldn't be strict definitions of black, white or latino anymore. God is clearly against interacial marriages in the OT, and how could we ignore god's word? And above all, it just seems so "icky" to some and how could we force such a thing on them?
These arguments have failed before and they will fail again. The generations who held onto segregation are on the path to extinction (although are clearly still present and trying to make more new converts) and the anti-gay crowd will be taking the same path before long.
Posted by MarquisDesMoines on November 5, 2012 at 12:26 PM · Report this
64
@61 I'd say it is a drop in the bucket of reasons it will be hard to go back to those days. Plenty of straight people who don't think about gays from one year to the next are invested in keeping the strides in sexual freedom they've made.
Posted by agony on November 5, 2012 at 12:18 PM · Report this
63
56

ah junior, you have stumbled upon the point-
we are not debating theology.
we are discussing social policy.
it doesn't really matter what danny believes.
or what maggie believes.
or who is right about the bible.

all that matters is that danny can't force the rest of us to conform to his religious beliefs.

and the opinion of supreme court justices are very pertinent to that discussion.
Posted by insults are a poor substitute for reason on November 5, 2012 at 12:01 PM · Report this
62
@60 Senator Frothy thinks states should have the right to criminalize acts of sodomy between consenting adults and to ban birth control. Strict enforcement of those two laws would result in far fewer childless married couples. Social conservatives don't emphasize the anti-childless straight couple aspect of their beliefs when they are trying to win elections, that doesn't mean it isn't there.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 11:44 AM · Report this
61
@57 I think the success of the gay rights movement will make it that much harder to go back to the days of shotgun marriages and scarlet letters. If there is nothing wrong with gay sex, then recreational straight sex must also be OK. If there is nothing wrong with just for fun hetero-sex then an unplanned pregnancy is an unfortunate mishap rather than a major moral failing.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 11:22 AM · Report this
Backyard Bombardier 60
@59: No one is trying to deny straight people who do not wish to have children, or who cannot have children, the right to marry. The whole "sex is for reproduction" argument is a specious red herring in the marriage equality debate.
Posted by Backyard Bombardier on November 5, 2012 at 11:12 AM · Report this
59
@55 I think people who oppose gay rights care very much what straight people do in the bedroom. Need I remind you what homo-hater extraordinaire Rick Santorum thinks about contraception?

You can listen to what Senator Frothy thinks about birth control here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBTLnO7FQ…
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 11:01 AM · Report this
58
Hi Dan,

We used that reading at my wedding 1.5 years ago, based on that slog entry. Thankfully, we live in MD, so we hope to be an equality marriage state soon!
Posted by aw on November 5, 2012 at 10:27 AM · Report this
57
You're right about that.

Are you trying to say, though, that the gay rights movement fueled the change in straight relationships? Because that's my point - they were both caused by a new freedom in general in personal lives. Sex is part of it, but not all of it - married women working and having their own bank accounts is also part, as is desegregation. There's been a huge wave of social change in the last fifty years, and gay rights are just part of it.
Posted by agony on November 5, 2012 at 10:19 AM · Report this
venomlash 56
@52: Sure, let's ask a judge about theology. While we're at it, let's get the opinion of a theologian about evolutionary biology and ask a businessman about climatology. That's the trouble with your sort; you only respect the expertise of people who are experts in irrelevant fields.
Posted by venomlash on November 5, 2012 at 10:13 AM · Report this
Backyard Bombardier 55
@51: It's a false dichotomy to say that sex is either for reproduction or recreational - defining non-reproductive sex as "recreational" ignores the valuable role that sex can play in establishing and cementing intimate relationships.

It is more accurate to say that sex fulfils a range of roles across reproduction, pair bonding, and sometimes just plain fun and games.

Those who oppose marriage equality on the basis that homosexual sex cannot be reproductive don't even buy the argument that the only valid purpose of sex is reproduction. If they did - if their concern was really about preserving the sacred status of reproductive sex - then they'd be fighting to ensure that no one got married who did not have both the capacity and the intent to reproduce.

They aren't. They don't give a fuck about what straight people do in the bedroom. They themselves engage in non-reproductive sex. They are simply bigots who will use any argument to protect their bigotry.

And while you claim to not be opposed to marriage equality, you do seem to spend an awful lot of time defending the arguments of those who are.
Posted by Backyard Bombardier on November 5, 2012 at 10:05 AM · Report this
54
@53 Maybe the Sandra Fluke thing wasn't the best example. Let me ask you this, do you know anyone who is against gay rights and also pro-choice? Every once in a while you find someone who is anti-abortion but pro-gay rights, but the opposite is nearly non-existent.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 10:00 AM · Report this
53
I think that when we argue about gay rights, what we're really talking about is how our culture should view recreational sex.
----------------------

Yes, I think that's a fair stating of the case, from the conservative side, at least. From the liberal side, the argument would be that it's not about sex at all, or only peripherally, and is instead about relationships and civil rights.

Was there anyone who attacked Sandra Fluke who was not also opposed to gay marriage?
_________________________

I've run into many who *claim* that they are not, that it was all about having to pay for someone else's lifestyle choices. Once you start asking them to defend their arguments, though, it tends to all dissolve into a muddle of lightly disguised "Other people are having more fun than I am; I don't like it and want it to stop."
Posted by agony on November 5, 2012 at 9:24 AM · Report this
52
"Among religions in this country which do not teach what would generally be considered a belief in the existence of God are Buddhism, Taoism, Ethical Culture, Secular Humanism, and others."
Posted by Justice Hugo Black on November 5, 2012 at 9:07 AM · Report this
51
@50 I think that when we argue about gay rights, what we're really talking about is how our culture should view recreational sex. Conservatives, like Tony Perkins and Pat Robertson, believe that purely recreational sex is wrong and that making babies is the only legitimate reason for fucking. All gay sex is purely recreational. That is why, to a social conservative, classifying gay relationships as 'marriages' is morally repugnant. However, social conservatives don't only hate homos. They disapprove of purely recreational hetero-sex as well. Remember the controversy over Sandra Fluke's congressional testimony? Was there anyone who attacked Sandra Fluke who was not also opposed to gay marriage? Was there anyone who defended Sandra Fluke who was not at least somewhat sympathetic to the idea of marriage equality?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 9:02 AM · Report this
50
Mr M, if I'm reading your arguments correctly, you seem to be confusing correlation with causation. It seems to me that the two - gay rights and more flexibility in straight relationships - both come from the same cause, rather than one causing the other. The same cause that brought us second wave feminism, the end of the Hayes office, the end of racial segregation....

If I had to put a name to it, I'd call it a growing cultural awareness that there are many acceptable ways to live, that rigidity for the sake of rigidity serves no purpose. Rules that we all see DO serve a purpose, we all generally follow, even though no one is strictly enforcing them - you don't see hordes of people driving on the left, just because they want that freedom, for example. There aren't enough traffic cops to enforce that rule, if people decided they didn't want to follow it - we all just do, because it works. Rules of sexual regulation are going the way of the sumptuary laws in Medieval Europe - once people don't want to follow a rule like that, it's gone, and can't be called back.
Posted by agony on November 5, 2012 at 8:01 AM · Report this
venomlash 49
@48: Um...there's no such religion as Secular Humanism. Just so you know.
Basically, when someone pushes for something you disagree with, you claim that it's religious and they're trying to impose their religion on you. What a little bitch you are!
Posted by venomlash on November 5, 2012 at 7:50 AM · Report this
48
Status quo man-woman marriage laws do not reflect the religious values of any particular sect; no polygamy for Mormons, divorce is not outlawed as the Catholics teach, widows are not passed down to brothers-in-law as per the OT, etc.

Furthermore, marriage as a man/woman institution predates religion.

Danny Savage and his ilk come along and insist that those who disagree with him are misreading the Bible and the Bible is BS and wants to substitute his Secular Humanist definition of marriage for the status quo.

Others', or Danny's, religious convictions are irrelevant to the question of what the nation's marriage laws should be.

Danny tearing down the Bible and getting all gushy and wet over passages of Secular Scripture that move him is also irrelevant.

Americans are free from Danny Savage imposing his Secular Humanist definition of marriage on them.

Posted by Freedom From Danny's Religion on November 5, 2012 at 7:46 AM · Report this
47
Mr M (and Mr Lash) - Could you kindly avoid the use of the phrase, "straight rights"? I was fired explicitly for orientation more years ago than I care to recall, and find the phrase inaccurate as well as offensive. I'll even suggest "license" as a substitute for "rights".

And, Mr M, this is just a guess, but you could always try Spain.
Posted by vennominon on November 5, 2012 at 6:06 AM · Report this
46
@43 You don't see a connection between pre-marital sex and children born out of wedlock?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 5, 2012 at 12:50 AM · Report this
45
I am an American. I served in the United States Marine Corps. I went to war to fight for OUR rights as Americans. I am a college student; a daughter; a sister; a niece; a best friend; a co-worker; a role model. I am almost thirty years old. I get bullied. I am judged daily. I don’t have equal rights. Approve R74!
Posted by soccerchicusmc on November 5, 2012 at 12:05 AM · Report this
44
On an unrelated tangent, It's becoming clearer and clearer that a lot of my friends will never be able to marry without committing financial suicide. When one partner has defaulted on school loans, and the other hasn't, you're throwing any chance of financial security out the window by getting married. I want to marry my boyfriend, but I don't want him to suffer from my economic ball and chain.
Posted by Caralain on November 4, 2012 at 11:03 PM · Report this
venomlash 43
@42: Gay rights as successor to straight rights I can dig. Gay rights as successor to "the decline of the traditional family" I'm not so sure about.
Alleged, do you have any response to my comment at #8?
Posted by venomlash on November 4, 2012 at 10:38 PM · Report this
42
@38 I'm not a bright university kid like you, VL, but the stuff you said in that old comment would seem to support my theory that the loosening of heterosexual mores leads to, or at least is a necessary condition for, greater acceptance of LGBT people. Is there any country where a gay rights movement has not been preceded by a straight rights movement? Is it really so far fetched to speculate that greater acceptance of gays might also lead to more sexual freedom for straight people?

@39 Assuming your description of Dutch matrimonial law is accurate, and I have no reason to believe it is not, then it seem to support my theory that societies that are accepting of gay people also tend to accept a wider variety of heterosexual relationships. Is there any country in the world in which the rights of gay and lesbian couples are respected, but heterosexual freedom is highly restricted?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 8:33 PM · Report this
41
It annoys me that while this lovely couple ("Mr and Mrs Vitt") support marriage equality, they are unwilling to remake heterosexual marriage. Why are U.S. women still taking their husband's last name? In many cultures - traditional Scotland, many Muslim, African or Hispanic Countries - women kept their birth name and children might get both their parents' names. But in the U.S. we are stuck in the stupid English tradition of women taking their husband's name. Even in England, women didn't start taking their husband's last names until Henry VIII (1491–1547) ordered that marital births be recorded under the surname of the father. Mary Wollstonecraft ( 1759 – 10 1797) was an eighteenth-century British writer, philosopher, and advocate of women's rights, and the mother of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, kept her birth name her whole life, and yet hundred of years later some 90% of U.S. women still take their husband's last name upon marriage. Lucy Stone (1818–1893) was the first woman in the United States to carry her birth name only throughout life, despite her marriage in 1855, but many of the founding mothers (the wives of American Revolutionaries) wrote their names as Hillary Rodham Clinton does today, proudly displaying their birth name. The state where I live, Iowa. It is one of only six states - the others being Georgia, Massachusetts, Hawaii, New York, and Delaware - that give women and men the choice to write in what their new last name will be when signing a marriage certificate. In Massachusetts, for instance, a Harvard study found approximately 87% of married college educated women take their husbands' name down from a peak before 1975 of over 90% but up from about 80% in 1990. I wish more heterosexuals would make sure that while discussing marriage equality they don't cling to any tradition without examining it. The right of same-sex couples to marry gives us all a chance reflect on modern marriage and what "traditions" should continue.
More...
Posted by Punkystewster on November 4, 2012 at 8:33 PM · Report this
40
I suspect that Mr Savage is the best thing to happen to heterosexual marriage since Anne Boleyn.

It is interesting that, for a certain sort of person, the great cultural divide is no longer between straight and non-straight, but between coupled and uncoupled. Even when I was coupled, it would have unnerved me completely to find myself at a large social gathering consisting entirely of couples. It reminds me of Mary Crawford in Mansfield Park saying that, living with her sister in a country parsonage, she felt like the Doge at the court of the French king, who saw no wonder there equal to the wonder of seeing himself in it.
Posted by vennominon on November 4, 2012 at 8:14 PM · Report this
bennett 39
@19: The Dutch government recognizes three categories of formal relationship: marriage, registered partnership and "samenlevingscontract" (a sort of cohabitation agreement). All three are available to gay and straight couples alike, and differ in terms of how easy they are to break, how property and inheritance rights are dealt with, etc. Essentially, it's a choose-your-own-level-of-relationship model.

Anyway, these days a lot of (straight) Dutch couples choose registered partnership or cohabitation agreements over marriage, and many of them have children. (I think something like 40%--would have to check the figures.) When I lived in Holland, I had a female professor who referred to her male partner as just that, her partner; they had been together for twenty years, had 3 children, shared a house, but had chosen a registered partnership over marriage.

Anyway, seems like all of that would skew your figures, because "out of wedlock" means something very different in a Dutch context than it does here. In my experience, whichever one of those categories a couple chose didn't effect how the community perceived their relationship; it was more a private/personal choice having to do with political and religious views, practical issues, etc.

Posted by bennett http://bennettabroad.wordpress.com/ on November 4, 2012 at 7:43 PM · Report this
venomlash 38
@19: Your reasoning is full of beans. Please refer to this comment.
In short, you can't cherry-pick a certain interval to try and make a point. You need to look at the larger trend. dx/dt is more informative than x(t).
Posted by venomlash on November 4, 2012 at 7:14 PM · Report this
37
Could someone in charge please ban unregistered trolls?
Posted by sarah70 on November 4, 2012 at 7:07 PM · Report this
36
The officiant at my (straight) sister's wedding used the same quote (a couple months ago). Which was a pleasant surprise, as my sister and her fiancé had already decided to print it in the wedding program, without coordinating with the officiant.

Go Washington state! I moved away when I was 18, but it's still my native state, and I'll be so proud on tues if R74 is approved.
Posted by Chester Allman on November 4, 2012 at 5:10 PM · Report this
35
34

We are aware that when abstinence is part of a comprehensive sex ed curriculum teen age of first sex is delayed and pregnancy is reduced.

Posted by and abstinence IS part of a comprehensive sex ed curriculum on November 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM · Report this
34
@33 I say again, do you think the gay rights movement could have happened if the straight rights movement hadn't happened first? I think tolerance of LGBT people and tolerance for heterosexuals who are unable or unwilling to stuff their love lives into the straight-jacket of life long fidelity to a single partner are mutually reinforcing.

@32 You are aware that abstinence only sex-education has been show to cause higher rates of sexually transmitted infections and unplanned pregnancies, aren't you?

@31 I was under the impression that Italy provided an extensive social safety net to it's citizens as well.

@29 Dutch people form stable families? I thought life in the Netherlands was nothing but non-stop hashish-fueled orgies. How disappointing.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 2:53 PM · Report this
33
@30
You're proving my point: heterosexuals were exploring alternative, non-traditional sexual and personal relationships long before--and quite independently of--the marriage equality movement. To say that this trend will be spurred on by gays and lesbians wanting to be *more* traditional just does not make sense to me.
Posted by Clayton on November 4, 2012 at 2:06 PM · Report this
32
26

oh yeah-
that special spot.
mmmmmmmmmmmmm......

and when Mr Dreamy Wonderful is done with her and she decides to settle down how will she relate to Mr Perfectly OK But Not Mr Dreamy Wonderful over a lifetime?

And what about the viral calling cards Mr Dreamy Wonderful deposits on her special spot?

Oh, and little Dreamy Wonderful Jr that Planned Parenthood killed for her (thanks, taxpayers!), does he get any consideration? Or should he be happy to give up all but six weeks of his short unappreciated life in the interest of Mom's mind blowing orgasms?
Will Mom feel pangs of guilt later? Or will she be the kind of woman who steels herself to killing her own children without a second's hesitation or regret.

And the saddest part of it is that it isn't about Special Spots or positions or techniques or finding Mr Dreamy Wonderful.
The brain is the biggest sex organ.
Attitude matters more in achieving those all important Mind Blowing Orgasms.

Emotionally Mature Well Adjusted people (not the kind who write sex columnists looking for validation, btw...) find Mind Blowing Orgasms in (gasp!) secure loving lifelong relationships.

In fact Mind Blowing Orgasms are the icing on the cake of secure loving lifelong relationship.

Alas-
Our poor dear will find, probably too late, that eating icing right out of the can gives you diabetes, rots your teeth and makes you fat....

Posted by what could POSSIBLY go wrong? on November 4, 2012 at 1:08 PM · Report this
rob! 31
@ Ken, moreover, the Netherlands and Scandinavia have strong social safety nets of long standing. I think a far better argument could be made that effective control of health-care costs and near-universal availability of care; good schools including university education that is not escalating out of financial reach; solid employment benefits including gender non-discrimination in pay, child-care support, and substantial maternity/paternity leave; etc., are more important determinants of how many people in the entire population decide to get married/stay married than societal and legal acceptance of LGBT marriage equality.

The ability of women to enter the workforce in large numbers in the U.S. over the last 50 years (and hooray for that, no doubt), combined with other distortions like the marriage tax benefit and the mortgage deduction, has also effectively bid up the prices of things like housing and college education (as, say, multiples of an average annual salary) to the point where a single parent has great difficulty competing. My parents' home in 1965 cost twice my dad's annual salary. The last time I seriously considered buying a home, the cookie-cutter non-exceptional kind of house I was looking at was about seven times my annual salary, which was $50,000+ at the time.

You can argue about whether the government should bend social policy to financially incentivize marriage, all-inclusive or otherwise, but the benefits are clear of ensuring basic human needs.

You can also worry about the possibly narcissistic component of single people deciding to reproduce (or even of adopting with the subconscious motive of impressing one's own supposed superior world-view on a malleable child), but I think those are vanishingly minor occurrences compared to the benefits of removing overwhelming economic considerations from people's calculations of whether to get married, or stay married, or bring children into the home.
More...
Posted by rob! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZBdUceCL5U on November 4, 2012 at 12:49 PM · Report this
30
@28 The notion that homosexuality ought to be treated as something other than a crime and a mental illness gained traction only after the sexual revolution of the 1960s had radically loosened heterosexual mores. Do you believe that to be coincidence as well?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 12:22 PM · Report this
Registered European 29
@19:
According to Wikipedia, in the Netherlands the percentage of births that occur out of wedlock has risen from 4% in 1980 to 40% in 2007.

I live in The Netherlands. I know more than one unmarried couple with children. They form happy, stable families, yet the father and mother are not married. Are their children counted as "births out of wedlock"? If so, then that statistic is not as meaningful as it seems.
Posted by Registered European on November 4, 2012 at 12:18 PM · Report this
28
@19 and 27,

I don't know. I still have a hard time thinking that legally allowing LGBT people to enter more traditional relationship forms will encourage het people to explore less traditional relationship forms. You're probably right that both will happen (both are happening already), but I have to agree with 20 and 24: that correlation is not causation, and that what we are seeing here falls into the realm of coincidence, not cause and effect.
Posted by Clayton on November 4, 2012 at 12:07 PM · Report this
27
@25 I think the success of the marriage equality movement will reinforce the general attitude that different types of sexual relationships work for different people. Over time I think this will lead to greater acceptance of straight people, especially straight women, who choose to enter into unconventional sexual relationships, such as open marriages. Personally, I think this is a good thing, but I can understand why Tony Perkins doesn't share my enthusiasm.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 11:19 AM · Report this
26
@23 Yep, if the people of Washington state approve Referendum 74 on Tuesday then Tony Perkins' daughter will be slightly more likely to grow up to be the kind of women who think it's OK to defy both her God and her father by having a sexual relationship with a man she has no intention of marrying simply because he touches her special spot in just the right way and gives her mind blowing orgasms. Who wouldn't want to protect his daughter from such a horrible fate?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 10:58 AM · Report this
25
@19 Even if you are correct that "greater acceptance of LGBT people is an effect rather than a cause of the decline of the traditional family," how will denying marriage to LGBT people will encourage their straight brothers and sisters to get married?
Posted by Clayton on November 4, 2012 at 10:52 AM · Report this
Christampa 24
Ken, you only gave 4 data points. There are more countries to look at. As it is, I don't even see a correlation, much less causation. All I see is coincidence.
Posted by Christampa on November 4, 2012 at 10:43 AM · Report this
23
The Fundamentalists claim that allowing homosexuals to marry will result in widespread immorality and depravity.

We were skeptical.

But listening to Danny advocate homosexual 'marriage' and non-monogamous 'marriage' suggests the Fundies were on to something.
Posted by The Arc of the Universe Doesn't Bends Towards Perversion on November 4, 2012 at 10:30 AM · Report this
22
@20 You don't think that there is a connection between the success of the marriage equality movement and the decline in social disapproval of sexual relationships of the non-hetero-married variety?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 10:23 AM · Report this
21
10

We don't see why those comments were directed to ours...

Our point is that the Gay Jesus can not dictate Secular Humanist Scripture to the US Government and have it enacted as law.

What was yours?

If Danny thinks Secular Humanists scripture should be enacted as US Law does he also think Mormon scripture should be enacted as US Law?

Or is Equality only for Homosexuals?...
Posted by Danny's Bigotry, Prejudice and Hate are unwelcome in America on November 4, 2012 at 10:18 AM · Report this
Backyard Bombardier 20
Correlation is not causation.

If you don't know what that means you have no business quoting statistics.
Posted by Backyard Bombardier on November 4, 2012 at 10:02 AM · Report this
19
According to Wikipedia, in the Netherlands the percentage of births that occur out of wedlock has risen from 4% in 1980 to 40% in 2007. In Norway that number has risen from 15% to 54% during the same time period. In Sweden 40% of children were born to unwed mothers in 1980, in 2007 that number was 55%. All those countries have full marriage equality. On the other hand Italy is one of the few EU nations that does not grant any type of legal recognition to same-sex couples. There, the rate of out of wedlock births in 2007 was only 21%. Up from 4% in 1980. I am inclined to believe that greater acceptance of LGBT people is an effect rather than a cause of the decline of the traditional family. However, I think it is hard to argue that the two are not related.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on November 4, 2012 at 9:40 AM · Report this
Registered European 18
I support gay marriage because I believe they have right to be just as miserable as the rest of us.


-- Kinky Friedman
Posted by Registered European on November 4, 2012 at 9:31 AM · Report this
COMTE 17
The officiant incorporated this into my friends' wedding ceremony this weekend - it's definitely getting used by Marriage Equality-supporting het couples. Let's hope the trend continues until doing so is no longer necessary.
Posted by COMTE on November 4, 2012 at 9:21 AM · Report this
16
My wife and I incorporated this same passage in our (hetero) wedding earlier this year. It really is a beautiful piece of writing, and it also gives non-religious folks like us a very eloquently stated case for marriage as an institution and an important commitment. So much of the boilerplate marriage ceremony stuff out there is superstitious crap, it was great to find some words that articulate the importance and beauty of civil marriage without the religious hoo-hah. It also felt right for us in terms of being inclusive of our gay friends and family members, many of whom were part of the ceremony with us.
Posted by steelyblades on November 4, 2012 at 9:16 AM · Report this
15
We used an excerpt at our wedding... read by a dear friend whose wedding I read it at a year earlier. It's now part of the fabric of weddings.
Posted by So drama on November 4, 2012 at 9:14 AM · Report this
14
I read that quote at my friend's straight wedding last summer at her request, and was moved and honored to do so.
Posted by caritas on November 4, 2012 at 9:11 AM · Report this
13
Damn you, Savage! I don't need to tear up so early on a Sunday morning. While I am dabbing at my eyes, let me say that it amazes me just how far we have come in my lifetime. It took a while for our straight friends to "get it", but now that they have they are jumping on the bandwagon right and left. But then, who could blame them? We do, of course, have a fabulous bandwagon.
Posted by PaulBarwick on November 4, 2012 at 8:55 AM · Report this
12
My husband and I used this quote as part of our post-elopement party. It was prominently featured on the guest table, above the guest book and directly between pictures of our parents at their respective weddings.
Posted by serabelle on November 4, 2012 at 8:46 AM · Report this
Stiny 11
oh I am SO doing this at my wedding!
Posted by Stiny on November 4, 2012 at 7:48 AM · Report this
10
@6, 7
Sorry, but the couple who gets married by a justice of the peace has the same rights and responsibilities as the couple married by an archbishop in a cathedral. Socially there is a great deal of difference in the ceremonies, but legally there is no difference between the marriages. One cannot argue against marriage equality on religious grounds, because the approval of a religious body is not a necessary precondition for marriage.

Besides, there are some denominations that happily perform same sec ceremonies where it is legal. Under the first amendment, their religious views deserve recognition, too.
Posted by Clayton on November 4, 2012 at 5:57 AM · Report this
9
This made me tear up. As I ponder marriage with my girlfriend, I am continually thankful for the wonderful straight ally friends and family we have who are in full support of our getting married one day.
Posted by TickaBoom on November 4, 2012 at 12:42 AM · Report this
venomlash 8
@6: So...it's a case of imposing on others when gays want to get married, but not when straights want to stop gays from getting married?
@7: What civil rights is Mr. Savage denying others?
Posted by venomlash on November 4, 2012 at 12:01 AM · Report this
7
And your smug
pious
self-righteous
assertion of Civil Rights for yourself
that you deny others is impressively hypocritical.

The Moral Arc does not bend toward Perversion
and it does not bend toward Hypocrisy.
Posted by Death to Tyrants on November 3, 2012 at 10:57 PM · Report this
6
"...the secular equivalent of Scripture"

Indeed.

And therein lies the rub.

Secular Humanists want to force their religious definition of 'marriage' on Americans who do not share their religious beliefs.

That is a no-no in this Free Republic.

It flies in Europe,
which has never embraced Freedom of Religion
and where state religion;
Catholic, Lutheran, Secular Humanist;
is the norm.

But we are not European Sheep.

Danny should study American History.

This Free Republic was founded as a refuge from State Religion.

and We are not ready to abandon our Liberties just yet....

Posted by Real America rejects Danny's Intolerance and Bigotry on November 3, 2012 at 10:48 PM · Report this
M3 5
Here's another piece along the same lines: http://nymag.com/news/intelligencer/good…

As a hetero atheist, I also appreciate that the excerpt makes an eloquent non-religous case for the meaning and importance of marriage. It's just a beautiful piece of writing. It will definitely be part of my ceremony. (I hope it makes my evangelical relatives a little uncomfortable.)
Posted by M3 on November 3, 2012 at 10:10 PM · Report this
4
I believe it's Don Quixote from http://xkcd.com/556/
Posted by Hanoumatoi on November 3, 2012 at 9:20 PM · Report this
Christampa 3
@1,2 - Is that by chance Don Quixote as your avatar?
Posted by Christampa on November 3, 2012 at 8:57 PM · Report this
Foggen 2
Wait a good goddamn minute. That decision was in 2003! You were 6 years late to the party on that line.
Posted by Foggen on November 3, 2012 at 7:15 PM · Report this
Foggen 1
Is it more significant that your words made it into the ceremony or the court decision?
Posted by Foggen on November 3, 2012 at 7:11 PM · Report this

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