Same-sex marriage: is it triumphing?
Of course things did not turn out that way, and it became evident that a long, hard slog lay ahead of us. In the interval, of course, much has been accomplished. California will soon be a done deal, and Maryland and New Jersey cannot lag far behind.
But is euphoria warranted, at long last? According to Andrew Sullivan today, “the country is edging relentlessly toward accepting the humanity of gay couples and our marriages and relationships.” Would that that were so. What we actually seem to be confronting is somewhat different, reflecting a reinforcement of the blue-state/red-state dichotomy. Iowa is an anomaly, while elsewhere in the heartland resistance is hardening. Unfortunately, thirty-one states have constitutional restrictions limiting marriage to one woman and one man.
Once the liberal coastal states are won--as they must be--a further long, hard slog awaits. Only when same-sex marriage exists in all fifty states will the panoply of federal benefits be assured.
At least there is hope in the United States. In the rest of the world I am not so sure. So far things are breaking out into two big blocs. The first consists of Western European countries, Canada, and some Latin American countries. The second bloc, officially and relentlessly homophobic, predominates in sub-Saharan Africa (except for South Africa) and the Middle East. In this way the US split mirrors the global one--at least for the present,
Labels: gay marriage