of gays and matrimony

Years ago, my well-meaning, liberal arts college-educated friends started taking me aside. I apparently had missed practice, and didn’t know all of the new plays by heart, so they decided to enlighten me as to what the new progressive playbook contained, and on page one was the right of men to marry men, and women to marry women. “Really?” I asked without prejudice. “Come on, man, you should be able to marry whoever you want!” I got the opposite play from the campus Republicans, who were taking me aside and putting their [strictly platonic] hands on my shoulders and saying, “But if They get the right to marry, then They can adopt.” Jaws drop, horror. Not normal, said they, no way!

These were the Al Gore “civil union” days, and I supported the former vice president, not out of any belief in any virtue or universal truth [oh, hell no], but simply because I grasped the problems that faced same-sex couples [taxes! hospital visitation rights!], and I thought that the civil union Trojan Horse had a better chance of making it past the gates of traditional Christian America than some extended sojourn into the dank depths of rabbit-hole questions like, “But are you born with it?” Well, if [formerly straight] Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon is our poster lesbian, then obviously not! [Which is also why the arguments about gay marriage are so ridiculous: straight woman decides she’s actually lesbian, leaves husband for woman, takes kids and – voila! – kids suddenly have two moms]

I am of the two-camps camp, actually, the “born this way” camp and the “chose this way” camp, some born with, some chose, which actually makes me part of the “just don’t give a shit” camp. That’s right, I don’t care how gays got gay, or what makes gay people gay, or, really about gays at all, well, as little as I care about straights. They’re just people, all of them, not one more fascinating than the other, at least when sexual orientation is concerned. Which is why I really wish that each one of the United States, and Estonia, too, would legalize same-sex partnerships, so I can stop hearing about it and having my well-meaning, liberal arts college-educated friends go over the playbook with me, again and again and again, and watch people trade Biblical quotes on the Internets and see legally minded pals advocate civil unions for opposite-sex couples, with liberal use of exclamation marks …

In Estonia, I even signed a petition in support of it, just to keep it moving toward that final relieving destination, where it’s SO normal that nobody talks about it anymore. I have been grateful to see the public opinion shift in the last few years toward support for same-sex marriages, because it means that, at last, Praise Be to You, Lord Christ, Western society can move on with its life. Same-sex marriage, your fifteen minutes/years are almost up …


21 thoughts on “of gays and matrimony”

  1. I'm not bothered about it. Don't believe in marriage. But my partner of 6 years does. And that's why there's a problem. I also own my own property in Estonia and the law treats property rights in accordance with martial status. For example, if there's a war or a major catastrophe, our home would potentially not be categorized as a “home” anymore. It would be possible for the legislator to treat it as any public or commercial property, like a shop or a factory, and do whatever they want with it. At the same time my sisters house would be protected under the law. It just can't be right that there's a different law for me and a different one for my sister.


  2. Isn't it only same-sex civil union that is on the cards in Estonia, not same-sex civil marriage? In Ireland there are some 160 legal differences between SSCUs and marriage, which is why people (gay and straight) are pushing for SSCM.


  3. LGBT community campaigns for civil partnerships, liberal christians and public opinion leaders campaign for full marriage equality and adoption rights (that is straight people who want full legal synchronisation for gays).

    That's why this debate is often hijacked by people with extreme views – people get confused on who wants what.

    Media doesn't help either, it's only straight people debating or occasionally a gay rights activist gets their 5 minutes air time and that's it.


  4. As far as I know, lawmaker has all draft legislation in place – all options are open to debate and technically possible. But the conservative party has blocked all of these options. So in England you could say that gay people are treated as second class citizens by not allowing people to make the ultimate commitment, but in Estonia legally speaking you couldn't, as on paper our relationships don't even exist.


  5. Okay, I was under the impression that only civil partnership (something less than civil marriage) was on the table, mea culpa.

    And why isn't the LGBT community compaining for full equality? They are in Ireland, France, USA, Australia etc.

    And who mentioned England?


  6. It's like with everything, isn't it. It just doesn't work that way. Took us nearly 700 hundred years to form a state. Could have just kicked some German asses centuries ago and took charge but life isn't that simple.

    Partnership law is realistic. Full equality is not. That's the difference and that's why sometimes those liberals irritate me – with their action, focus shifts. It stops being about basic practical things in life and becomes a debate about something else all together.


  7. I've been also wondering about this. In Estonia we say that persons sexuality or gender is something that is not stuck between persons legs, but between persons ears. This is how a typical common Estonian understands it. At the same time, for example, and I'm not being horrible or putting anyone down, people with limited mental capacity (like people with down syndrome) are allowed to marry on the condition that they are aware of the consequences. And to me that raises a question of legality of the current situation. If what's “beween my ears” is unacceptable to some because of their religious beliefs, yet the same argument does not apply equally to others, then who is the one to decide? All political parties, with the exception of IRL support at least civil partnerships. So why is it so difficult to find a consensus? It can't be constitutionally right to segregate on ideological grounds, surely.


  8. Funny … hahaha … if anyone were to ask me what I think of it .. I'd say … ban the fucking marriage!

    I say after being married 3 times and my current marriage is on the rocks …


    Don't get why anyone wants to marry anyone. Women just want to marry me or it is .. boo-hoo, boo-hoo .. you dont love me … and I go oh … fck!!!



  9. Well, technically speaking you couldn't. Because IRL wants to control what you're up to in the bedroom. 🙂

    As I said I don't believe in marriage. My dad had three or four of them. Waste of time and money. But then again my partner believes in it. The British are very old fashioned in that sense so I'm stuck in a way between a rock and a hard place.


  10. Both sets of my grandparents had several marriages too. Don't know if it's cool, lihtsalt Eesti elu. Guistino was right that having several partners through life, is a facy of life around here. Always has been. Only in North America and Western Europe is this something “new”.

    I've been watching “Modern Family” on telly lately and have to admit – there's a brighter side to American families too. Love yhat show.

    There's only two things in life that matter, an Irishman told me once, your family and your health. In that order.


  11. Very true. That's also the way I see this marriage thingy. If we don't get married, nothing happens, life will go on. But if something does happen and for example they will not allow my partner to pull the plug or take over the assets we acquired throughout our lives. An awful lot of people would be pissed off.

    That's why I say – concentrate on civil partnership, leave marriage to the next generation.


  12. “”But if They get the right to marry, then They can adopt.” Jaws drop, horror. Not normal, said they, no way!”

    Is this the best your conservative classmates had to offer? Justin, your attempt at presenting US political arguments are laughable or maybe just convient to your bias.


  13. For the record, I don't care and do agree that this is an issue of convienence for those on the general left and the general right. It's time to put it in the history books.

    But, it is not the governments role to dictate morality or endorse one group over another. For example, why are unmarried parents with a kid who rent going to pay more in taxes than a married couple without kids and a mortgage.

    The government should not endorse marriages at all. Civil Unions for all. Or how about equal treatment for regardless if you are single or married or united in some fashion.

    With 70,000 pages of tax codes in the US and endless legal issues surrounding end of life issue, the government has created oportunities for unequal treatment. Maybe this intrusion should addressed and let individuals deal with what they think is natural or moral or righteous or fair. In other words, if we get the government out of the picture, we could focus more on how we treat each other and less on how the government treats us.


  14. Is this the best your conservative classmates had to offer? Justin, your attempt at presenting US political arguments are laughable or maybe just convient to your bias.

    No, it's just what a campus Republican said to me at the time. As I recall, he was a rich kid from Orange County, Calif. [And he had a watch that was a little too nice for an eighteen-year old] I guess he was trying to recruit me. FAIL.


  15. Lol….

    What does his economic status have to do with an opinion on whether gay marriage should is legalized? constitutional? accepted? promoted? recognized? endorsed? promoted? by a representative government or a referendum of the voters?

    I know plenty of guys struggling to make it on their own who holds the same opinion as your classmate, yet with far greater depth of understanding.

    Don't get me wrong the adoption issue is definetely not a none issue, but it should not rate very high in a rational and fair discussion on the issue, neither should someones economic status.

    I have been exposed to plenty of close minded people struggling in the inner city or rural counties, who believe we should gays with disrspect and unequality. These guys and girls are far removed from Orange County, CA.


  16. Well, most often progress doesn't happen because the political elites and public opinion in their infinite kindness decide to give up some morally indefensible positions. It happens because activists organize and start asking “impossible” concessions. Like not been routinely beaten up by the police and having fully concensual sexual relationships and acts decriminalized. Then you move on and make next impossible demands and so on – and finally you get to be treated like people, and the debate will focus on other things. That's how you make progress happen, by annoying every respectable unthinking person and campaigning for hopelessly impossible things.


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