Vail Daily columnist Richard Carnes: Really? Gay marriage again?
Vail, CO, Colorado
All those who believe President Obama’s “evolution” toward gay marriage is a ruse to cement the estimated fourth-largest voting bloc next November, please go stand in a corner.
All those who believe candidate Romney will use the same moment to prove to his ultra-conservative compadres that he is “one of them,” please go stand in a corner.
Now look around, and realize you are all standing in the same corner of the same round room.
What a surprise.
Those who hate Obama now hate him even more. Those who love Romney now, at least pretend to love him even more, and vice versa.
For Pete’s sake, who really cares? That “who marries whom” is even an issue is what amazes me.
Stating that marriage is between one man and one woman is, of course, a religious proclamation, or Belief Based Bigotry (BBB), as I like to call it. There are sadly many other types of bigotry in the world, but the anti-gay narrative is planted firmly in the annals of ever-evolving church doctrine.
Those who have actually read holy books, in this case the Bible (although I won’t bother to get into which “version” as each one tends to change societies perspectives from generation to generation), know full well that Jesus said nary a word about gay marriage (though he was highly intolerant that one time against straight capitalists, but that’s another story).
Anyway, no matter how hard some folks wish, America is not a theocracy. The BBB crowd does not dictate public policy, and in accordance with our Constitution, they never will. Because one group allows fairy tales and talking snakes to dictate their moral compass does not mean the rest of us are required to do so.
Gay marriage has been relegated to a state issue because of that pesky clause in the U.S. Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
This means we have no official religion and you are free to believe in whatever you choose, and we mean it so strongly that we promise to not even tax you for it if for some bizarre reason you decide to treat it as a money-making business.
Yet no matter how you try to slice it, the discrimination from bigotry is simply taking away rights and equality for those who think or look differently. Every generation of Americans so far has applied it at one time or another to slaves, blacks, women, Asians, Irish, Germans, Mexicans, Muslims, Jews, Christians, non-believers, homosexuals and just about any other category you can think of (KKK, anyone?), except perhaps aging white guys, of which I am a proud member.
But to pretend gay marriage is a serious issue every time we have elections is just downright silly. It’s like firemen standing around in front of a burning house but hesitating to do their job because of the broken front door hinge on the house across the street (it’s swinging both ways, hahahaha).
Personally, I think France and Greece voting to keep their heads in the sand to avoid any semblance of responsibility just a little bit longer is a much larger issue, and one that has actual long-term consequences for the economy of the planet, including the United States.
Then there’s the national debt, unemployment, Social Security, Medicare, a national energy policy, the wars, the terrorists, the Euro, Iran, North Korea, etc.
How about we work on trying to solve real issues instead, OK?
Richard Carnes of Edwards writes weekly. He can be reached at email@example.com.