In the end it comes down to this: Given that gay families exist, and are not going to be eliminated or converted by any means acceptable to the American people, what is to be done with them? Is it better for society that they be shunted aside, marginalized, ostracized, made to feel alien to traditional values and institutions? Or is it better that they be included in the fabric of American life, including the most important social institution we have for encouraging, recognizing, and reinforcing loving families? I can see why a sexual liberationist, or a radical of any stripe, might say, “Keep them out.” I have never been able to understand how a conservative could say that....
Recently I came across this passage, written in 1994, that I had saved. I quote it here because I think it expresses something pretty universal about human commitment. It was written by someone, deeply in love, who looked forward to a future life of marriage:I want a silver dipping bowl with our names engraved on it. I want to send out invitations and have a joyous occasion on which to see old friends I haven't seen in years. I want someone to throw bachelor parties for me and showers to mark the end of my celibate life. I want to spend time choosing the place for the ceremony, and the colors for the tuxes. I want people to come up to me and tell me how happy they are for me, and give me best wishes for my bright future. I want to cry as I proclaim my love for you in front of all whom I hold dear and I want you to cry as you do the same. I want my mother to cry. I want my father and brothers to cry. I want to ride away in a chauffeur-driven limousine to a place where I can kiss you to the clanking of forks against champagne glasses. I want to have cake smashed in my face and I want to dance the dance of succession with my husband, and then my in-laws. I want the rights, the responsibilities, the privileges, the good times and the bad times and the love that goes with the institution of marriage. I want to publicly commit to the person with whom I have fallen in love and want to spend the rest of my days with.It was written by one of those traditionalists, you know the type. One of those people who, foolishly and romantically and against all the evidence to the contrary and all the derision heaped on marriage by our culture and its cynics, still thinks marriage is worthwhile, still a beautiful and noble thing.
I want to savor growing together. I want to feel the support of your love when I am blue. I want to be the shoulder you cry on when things go badly. I want to laugh at your jokes and smile with pride at your accomplishments. I want to snuggle up next to you at night and feel the security of your presence. I want to feel the day brighten when you return from work and greet me with a kiss. I want a history with you. I want my life with you.
It was written by my partner to me.
Nov 4, 2005
the thoughtful traditionalist conservative
Hey, Oregon, listen up as Dale Carpenter finishes his week-long rebuttal to Maggie Gallagher in convincing fashion.