Friday, March 11, 2011

Civil Marriage Protection Act

It's not gay marriage or same-sex marriage. It's marriage. It's not a different kind of marriage. It's not about being lesbian or gay or straight. It's simply about marriage. That's all that it's about. Marriage.

I'm deeply disappointed that the House of Delegates did not pass the Civil Marriage Protection Act, but instead sent the bill back to committee. The delegates took their action because of the religious prejudice of some of the delegates, and because of the religious prejudice that many constituents have about homosexuality. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, "Religious bigotry makes bad public policy."

I resent that this whole topic is even up for discussion. Marriage is a basic human right - a right to form and nurture a family. I am angry that legislators, responding to a religious proscription that is 5,000 years old, would deny me my civil right to marriage. These same legislators wear linen/wool blends, but they certainly don't act on that ancient religious proscription.

Religious bigotry is insidious for several reasons. First of all, it's a useful cover in the United States, because our society has an extremely high regard for "Judeo-Christian" beliefs and practices. Secondly, this kind of bigotry is highly selective in the kinds of proscriptions it professes to be God's will. It used to be that slavery was God's will. Today, it is God's will that gay and lesbian people cannot marry. In America, if you can wrap your rhetoric in the Bible, then wrap it in the flag, you're well on your way.

Okay, I'll calm down some. But I ask the members in the House of Delegates, how would my marriage undermine marriage? If any of those delegates who voted to recommit the bill are divorced, or have committed adultery, I submit they are truly undermining marriage, and maybe they should re-examine their stance on the Civil Marriage Protection Act.