Bob Herbert’s column today in the NY Times — “Bliss and Bigotry” — made me cry. It’s a good column, but it did not provoke my sadness and anger so much as allow it. I keep surprising myself with how much the issue of gay marriage means to me. Every day I find it means more.
When I was a young a-hole in the ’70s, my line of grad school patter said that homosexuality is an inferior form of love because the sex carries no risk. (Yeah, those were the days.) Homosexuals sex acts lack the existential possibility of creating new life, I’d maintain, affecting my best Norman Mailer-esque pose. This gave me sufficient cover for my homophobia even with my gay friends. But, as I became an older a-hole and saw those friends form relationships as loving as the best of my straight friends, I stopped spouting that particular form of stupidity. I shut up, and was a better person for it. Funny how often that works.
I thought my patter was cocktail-party interesting, but it was just a spin on the mainstream bigotry that pinned itself on the “promiscuity” of “the gay life style.” No commitment. No love. Just sex sex sex.
So, now we have gay couples standing in line to foreswear promiscuity, to embrace commitment and love. But it turns out that it’s not just their way of having sex that’s unacceptable to us. Even their love isn’t good enough.
Well, God damn a country that turns away love, that would diminish love, that would deny love. What purer gift could we be offered?
Aren’t we commiting the very sin that brought God to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah? It sure wasn’t because their citizens were just too deeply in love with one another.
History may give Bush a pass for his doctrine of preemptive war, because the country was traumatized by 9/11. It may chuckle ruefully at the brazenness of his oligarchical partisanship. But I do not think history will forgive George W. Bush’s attempt to turn our Constitution against the love our children have for one another.
And if history will, I won’t.
It’s a shame that John Kerry is once again taking a position that’s politically convenient. We could use a leader right now.
[Cross posted at Loose Democracy]
Categories: Uncategorized dw