Ed Team

Will Same Sex Marriage Hurt America?

Filed By Ed Team | August 02, 2005 2:03 AM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, The Movement

Interesting and intelligent debate on-line. Jonathan Rauch does an admirable job for equality. He has helped me sharpen my arguments on the issue with some very original thinking. Maggie Gallagher isn't capable of original thinking.

Sample Rauch answer to the oft-asked question:

Q. Surely you don't want to apply this principle [that no one should be excluded from the institution of marriage] unrestrictedly. Do you mean that polygamy should be permitted also? ... Surely there have to be some restrictions on the principle of marriage?

A. Yes. Absolutely there should be restrictions on the principle of marriage, and those should be made with the following overarching principle in mind ...that societies are stabler (sic) when you maximize the opportunity to marry, so that everybody has that opportunity. Same sex marriage is very much a part of extending that opportunity to the last remaining class of remaining people who are shut out of it: homosexuals.

...It's important to understand what we are asking for in this debate. We are not asking for extra opportunities for marriage. We are not people who can already go out and have a marriage but want an extra spouse. Nor are we people who are saying we want to marry absolutely anyone we want to: our mother, our daughter, our sister, our brother, a toaster, a dog, what have you. We don’t want to marry everybody, which is polygamy, and we don't want to marry anybody, which is incestuous marriage. We just want the same thing heterosexuals have and that is the opportunity to marry somebody.

...When heterosexuals get the opportunity to marry two or three people or their mother or a dog or a toaster, homosexuals should also have the opportunity to marry three or four people or their mother or a dog or a toaster. But until then we just want the same thing heterosexuals take for granted, which is the opportunity to marry somebody.

Rauch wrote Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America, published in 2004 by Times Books.

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