Similar Unions

First published in “Between the lines” in December of 2004. On December 17 my current state of residence (Michigan) will amend its constitution to declare that “the union of one man and one woman in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as a marriage or similar union for any purpose.” Same-sex marriage is already… Continue reading Similar Unions

Second Thoughts on Civil Unions

First published November 18, 2004, in Between the Lines. Given our losses in the last election — all eleven states with same-sex marriage bans passed them, some by a wide margin — is it time to put aside the marriage fight? You’re probably expecting me to say, “No, of course not!” But I won’t. Let… Continue reading Second Thoughts on Civil Unions

200 Million Americans Can Be Wrong

First published September 9, 2004, in Between the Lines. Gay-rights opponents are fond of noting that the majority of Americans are against same-sex marriage. This is a reasonable claim for them to make. For one thing, it’s true (although by increasingly narrow margins). Furthermore, it’s rhetorically effective. America is, in spirit if not always in… Continue reading 200 Million Americans Can Be Wrong

Senator Kerry’s Marriage Contortions

First published October 1, 2003, in Between the Lines In a recent Advocate interview Massachusetts Senator and Democratic presidential hopeful John Kerry told reporter Chris Bull that, despite his otherwise strong support for gay rights, he could not bring himself to support gay marriage. In a previous Washington Post interview Kerry had stated, “Marriage is… Continue reading Senator Kerry’s Marriage Contortions

The Inclusive Santorum

First Published at Between the Lines on May 1, 2003 By now you’ve no doubt heard the flap about Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, who, in response to a question about whether homosexual persons should remain celibate, stated that “if the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home,… Continue reading The Inclusive Santorum

Homosexuality and Morality, Part 3: The Harm Arguments

First published at Between the Lines on December 19, 2002 The ancient Roman Emperor Justinian believed that homosexuality was the cause of earthquakes, plagues, famine, and various other maladies. Modern-day critics have been only slightly less creative in their allegations. Homosexuality has been blamed for the breakdown of the family, the AIDS crisis, sexual abuse… Continue reading Homosexuality and Morality, Part 3: The Harm Arguments

First Gays, Then Polygamists?

First published in “The Harvard Gay and Lesbian Review” on November 30,1999 AN INCREASINGLY COMMON objection to same-sex marriage takes the form of a slippery-slope argument: “If we allow gay marriage, why not polygamy? Or incest? Or bestiality?” This argument is nothing new, having been used against interracial marriage in the 1960’s. But what it… Continue reading First Gays, Then Polygamists?