Opposition to Gay Marriage: The Republican Love Affair with the Past

opposition to gay marriageOpposition to Gay Marriage

The future is always a dystopia and the past is always better than this mess we live in right now. That’s if literature has any ability to tell us about ourselves. Stories about the future: Forewarning. Stories about the good ol’ days: Heartening. Somewhere in our collective unconscious we believe there was a golden era of innocence and irresistible quaintness. The present is far from that—so the future has to be worse. Most likely involving robots … emoting and plotting their revenge.

The future scares us and we wish it could be more like it used to be. Therefore we freak out about change and demand tradition because it connects us to this proverbial Garden of Eden in our minds.

This logical glitch is a pestilence in American politics. Conservative politicians in particular pander to this notion; we must go back to the past. There it’s better because we were better.

Presumptive presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s punt on same-sex marriage is: “I agree with 3,000 years of history.” To him this means a love-based consensual marriage between one man and one woman; our current interpretation of marriage. Of course plural marriage, like that of Romney’s grandfathers, has also been practiced in the last 3,000 years. As were arranged marriages. As were loveless contractual nuptials. Deuteronomy is pretty clear if a woman isn’t a virgin when she gets married she should be killed. It wasn’t until 1993 that North Carolina became the last state to remove the marriage exemption for rape. Regardless Romney, admits to agreeing with 3,000 years of marriage history. His Etch-a-Sketch must be set to history revision.

I personally don’t agree with any history before sewage systems, women’s suffrage or the Loving decision. I also refuse to romanticize any era before the advent of antibiotics.

tina dupuyThe GOP’s objection to state-sanctioned monogamous homosexual relationships is, they offer, based on their belief in the Bible. The current crop of Republicans are less into Jesus (who didn’t like rich people or capital punishment) than they are into 1st Century values like stoning misfits in the public square. They’ve picked gay marriage to condemn as an evil out to kill us all, because for Republicans there actually IS a magic time in the not-so-distant past to be nostalgic for—specifically 2004. Then gay marriage was the perfect catalyst to get people to vote Republican. Hence Dubya’s second term.

And now? Now in the wake of the unremarkable ending to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (which, funny enough, is no longer talked about), gay rights doesn’t have the same bite. In 2005 the Supreme Court made sodomy legal in all 50 states and since then there have been absolutely no reports of anyone turning into a pillar of salt. But Republicans who pride themselves on being traditional and firmly planted in the past—regardless of folly—are going to try and chum the water with something as anemic as spousal privilege.

Last week, President Obama said he supported gays being allowed to marry. This was the right thing to do. But it wasn’t the radical thing to do—it’s popular. Most Americans agree that homosexuals should be able to be married. According to a recent Gallup poll 51 percent of Americans agree with President Obama on this issue.

tina dupuyWill gay marriage corrode the foundation of this country? When gay marriage becomes the norm (which it will eventually) we probably won’t even notice. We’ll get the same amount of wedding invites, only all of these will be legal. You’ll know the same amount of gays you know now. Our children will have the same likelihood of being homosexual as they do now. Very few American’s lives will change. It’s just a minority—a persecuted, ostracized, demonized minority—of Americans whose lives will improve with the option for full-legal rights as a married couple.

That’s if the past is actually prolog … instead of paradise.

Tina Dupuy
Taking Eternal Vigilance Too Far 


  1. like-mind says

    I’m delighted with Obama turning this election into a sharp focus on Civil Rights (and diverting from GOP-dampened economy).  However, “This was the right thing to do. But it wasn’t the radical thing to do—it’s popular” depicts Author’s lack of realistic political sense: is it a sure thing all 51% of those gay marriage supporters will also make it to the polls to vote for Obama? And one percent majority is mighty slim to stake re-election on, especially given the white-hot fervor of Bible-thumpers who make it a religious sacrament to Vote Bible.  To think, ‘Those who’d vote against Obama for this were already going to vote against him’, are locked into thinking in abstracts: the greater likelihood is someone who wasn’t going to bother to vote might now be energized to do so, against Obama.

  2. Hwood007 says

    If HE was not in favor of putting anyone to death, why did HE not save those to HIS left and  right while on the cross?  How about the many times HE helped the Jews defend themselves against other tribes.  What do you think happened to Sodom and Gomorrah?  I do not know what Gay marriage will do to the country but it will do more harm than a civil union would do.  If we were all gay, how then would we populate our country.  Please do not say use a doner bank, people want to create a child with the same DNA. Good question, I will have to ask my child what process they would use to create a child as that union has two of the same sex.

    • Peter says

      If we were all gay, how then would we populate our country.

      Oh. My. God.
      Is that really what you’re concerned about? Wow.
      Guess what, lesbians and gays have children all the time. How about you help them do their part in overpopulating the country by giving their families equal rights?
      PS: If your god exists, then he made gays. If you want to pretend they’re sinners, fine. But please keep your magic sky beings and your silly beliefs out of my country’s laws.

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