Although some will continue to try, it’s becoming very difficult to pretend that these loving, ridiculously normal couples are part of some radical movement to dismantle civilization.
In a recent column, commentator Kathleen Parker writes about the implosion of the so-called “Christian right,” that three decade long experiment of trying to fuse the Republican Party with a sickeningly misogynist, authoritarian strain of religious dogma. Its monstrous creation, “culture war,” is suddenly not going very well. Parker gives the example of head “culture warrior” James Dobson himself admitting that “the big cultural battles have all been lost.”
For those poor souls who feel that marriage equality is their “Armageddon,” things must seem grim indeed today. Their November Prop 8 victory in California doesn’t offer much comfort when in the space of a few days we have seen: The first unanimous court ruling that affirms marriage as a civil right that must be granted to same sex couples on the basis of equal protection – in the heartland state of Iowa, no less; the override of Vermont Governor Jim Douglas’ veto of the marriage equality bill; and the unanimous vote by the DC City Council to recognize same sex marriages performed in other states.
There’s also the statistical analysis by Nate Silver showing that states are losing support for anti-marriage equality amendments at the rate of about 2% per year. His model predicts that by 2012, about half of the states would reject such an amendment by voter referendum, including several that have previously voted to adopt them. Virginia reaches that point in 2015. By 2016, “only a handful of states in the Deep South would vote to ban gay marriage, with Mississippi being the last one to come around in 2024.”
This part will be disappointing to the lazy politicians who have been using our community, our families and our lives as a convenient political wedge:
Overall…marriage bans appear unlikely to be an electoral winner for very much longer, and soon the opposite may prove to be true.
That’s certainly already true of Vermont; as pointed out earlier, the most recent polling shows anti-equality votes to be a losing bet for officeholders.
Here’s a bit of the scene at the Vermont Statehouse this morning:
Among the celebrants in the lobby were former Rep. Robert Dostis, D-Waterbury, and his longtime partner, Chuck Kletecka. Dostis recalled efforts to expand gay rights dating to an anti-discrimination law passed in 1992.
“It’s been a very long battle. It’s been almost 20 years to get to this point,” Dostis said. “I think finally, most people in Vermont understand that we’re a couple like any other couple. We’re as good and as bad as any other group of people. And now I think we have a chance to prove ourselves here on forward that we’re good members of our community.”
Dostis said he and Kletecka will celebrate their 25th year together in September.
“Is that a proposal?” Kletecka asked.
“Yeah,” Dostis replied. “Twenty-five years together, I think it’s time we finally got married.”
Although some will continue to try, it’s becoming very difficult to pretend that these loving, ridiculously normal couples are part of some radical movement to dismantle civilization. That’s why the anti-gay activist front is now spending so much of its energy facilitating pogroms in other parts of the world. The savagery to which anti-gay extremist groups like Exodus are enthusiastically contributing will not be forgotten.