Today, in his Second Inaugural Address, President Obama said: “Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law – for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”
When he says that, I hear: “I want to change the law such that society no longer specially recognizes and helps potential parents.”
That’s exactly what I hear. It seems like the two sides of this debate are speaking different languages.
We live in a strange Orwellian moment when to say “parenting relationships deserve special status” is denounced as bigotry and to say, “I deny that parenting relationships are unique” is hailed as brave and bold.
When we say, “I’m against gay marriage.”
They hear: “I hate gay people. Their love isn’t real. Their relationships don’t matter.”
When they say, “Gay people have the right to marry the same sex.”
We hear: “There is nothing unique about a procreative relationship. Relationships that bear and rear children deserve no special status.”
When we say, “Heterosexual relations are natural to human beings. They are ordered toward procreation. This is a biological fact.”
They hear: “Gay people, in their deepest identity, are subhuman to me.”
When they say, “Love makes a family.”
We hear: “The facts of our biology are entirely arbitrary. We can wish them away. Your job is to honor our pretense.”
When we say, “The only reason the state recognizes marriage in the first place is to encourage and reward parenthood.”
They hear: “I am an anti-gay bigot.”
When they say, “LGBT marriage equality is the new civil rights movement!”
We hear: “In a nation that rejects the right to life for an entire class of people, the unborn, and kills 3,700 babies a day, applying the term ‘marriage’ to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual relationships is the real issue!”
History will look at our times in the harsh light of truth, with all the Orwellian nuances stripped away. All the name-calling will be shown up for the silliness it always was. And when that happens we will be proud to have stood on the side of marriage.